Stars: 4 out of 5
Pros: Some great characters, good mystery
Cons: Some over the top characters, slow start to mystery
The Bottom Line:
Slow opening day
Even before the murder
An Opening Scoop of Murder
Yes, I have a massive sweet tooth, but one of my biggest weaknesses is ice cream. So, naturally, A Deadly Inside Scoop caught my eye. This is the first in the Ice Cream Parlor Mysteries by Abby Collette, and it was a mostly delicious debut.
Bronwyn “Win” Crewse is ready to reopen Crewse Creamery, the ice cream parlor founded by her grandparents in Chagrin Falls, Ohio. It’s been closed for a few months as Win remodeled the inside, returning it to its former glory. Unfortunately, the renovations took longer than originally planned, so she missed the summer season. Even worse, the day of the reopening in October coincides with the early first snowfall of the season, keeping all the customers away from the shop.
However, Win’s day gets even worse when she stumbles upon a dead body after she’s closed the shop for the day. The man turns out to be someone who crossed paths with Win’s family years ago, and not for the better. Before Win knows it, the police are looking at her father as the killer. Now, Win needs to figure out what really happened so she can clear him of a crime she knows he didn’t commit. Can she do that and get customers into the ice cream parlor?
Before you pick up this book, you need to have ice cream handy. Yes, you will crave it that much. I’m glad Win’s shop isn’t in town because I’d be in multiple times a day sampling all the flavors and I don’t need that kind of temptation. There are some recipes in the back to enjoy, and they sound delicious.
Unfortunately, the mystery’s pacing was off. It seemed to take a while to get to the point where Win was actively trying to investigate things. Once she does, there are some good surprises and suspects before she figures everything out at the end.
The characters were also a bit of a mixed bag. I loved Win and her family. In fact, just before I picked up this book, I was thinking how rare it was to find a series with a main character who has good relationships with her parents and grandparents. It seems to be usually one or the other. Here’s we get to meet three generations of Win’s family, and I loved all of them. Her best friends, on the other hand, were more caricatures than true characters. They provided some laughs for me, but they could also annoy me at times. Hopefully, they will be better developed as the series goes along. The suspects were good and did their part keeping me confused as I read.
A Deadly Inside Scoop was still a tasty treat. There is plenty of promise in this debut, and I can see this growing into a series that becomes a favorite for many.