Stars: 5 out of 5
Pros: Fun characters and setting in a strong mystery
Cons: One aspect not resolved (but could easily be followed up on in later books)
The Bottom Line:
Corpse in Robbie’s store
Starts this charming mystery
Who Left the Corpse in Robbie’s Restaurant?
One of my favorite books from last year was the first in the Country Store mystery series by Maddie Day. Naturally, that meant I was looking forward to Grilled for Murder, the follow up. I’m delighted to say I enjoyed this one as well.
While Robbie Jordan’s restaurant is normally open only for breakfast and lunch, she is making an exception this particular Saturday night. She’s been hired to host and cater a welcome home party for Erica Shermer. Erica had moved to Chicago, but now she’s come back to South Lick, Indiana. Naturally, her family is thrilled she has returned.
But not everyone feels that way. Robbie sees this first hand when Erica shows up late to her own party and then proceeds to have arguments with several of the guests.
When Robbie comes down from her apartment over the restaurant the next morning to start breakfast, she feels a cold draft. Investigating, she discovers that someone has broken the window in her door, and then she finds Erica’s dead body in the restaurant. Erica was very much alive when she left the party. So what was she doing back at the restaurant? And who was upset enough by her return to kill her?
When I started reading this book, I quickly remembered just how much I loved these characters the first time around. The cast is filled with strong, fun characters I love to spend time around. Naturally, they are led by Robbie herself. Her aunt is also fun, and I love Danna, the young woman who is Robbie’s employee in the restaurant. Of course, this book introduces some interesting suspects as well.
I also really enjoy the setting. Robbie’s restaurant sounds so charming, and the food always sounds so good. The displays of cooking ware are a fun added touch. If I were in the area, I would love to visit for breakfast myself.
Which brings us to the mystery. It is fast paced, with us always getting some clue or red herring that progressed the story. There was one thing introduced that was never resolved, and I hope it is brought up in a future book. In fact, I can easily see that happening. The climax to the main mystery of who killed Erica was logical and suspenseful and provided the resolution I needed for this book.
This book is actually set right after Thanksgiving, so in between investigating, Robbie is doing a little decorating and other things connected with Christmas. Since I love Christmas so much, this was a nice surprise.
And we get recipes. There are a total of 4 in the back of the book, covering everything from French toast to coleslaw.
If you are looking for a strong, capable mystery with characters you’ll love spending time with, look no further than Grilled for Murder. You’ll eat it up faster than one of Robbie’s specials and be ready for your next helping.
NOTE: I received an ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review.