Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Apple Turnover Murder-Joanne Fluke

Apple Turnover Murder
Joanne Fluke
Kensington, Feb 23 2010, $24.00
ISBN: 9780758234896

In Lake Eden, Minnesota, Hannah Swensen’s business The Cookie Jar is booming with orders as June is busting out with weddings and other events. When Mayor Bascomb and his wife Stephanie order one thousand and one hundred apple turnovers to sell at the Lake Eden Combined Charities Drive, Hannah is elastic but wonders of there is time to make that amount in addition to their other orders. Her partner Lisa’s enthusiasm plus other bakers all chip in to fulfill the order.

The only real issue Hannah has with the gala is the emcee is community college professor Brad Ramsey; whom Hannah and her younger sister Michelle had relationships with at different times when the sisters were attending school. Ramsey has made a lot of enemies especially breaking the hearts of many coeds, but Hannah never expected someone to kill him when she finds his murdered body backstage holding a turnover. Hannah investigates hoping to identify the culprit without the police especially her other boyfriend deputy Mike Kingston, who leads the official inquiry, knowing that the Swensen siblings were part of Brad’s conquests. She is also worried about her second boyfriend Norman acting peculiarly and out of character, as he left home warm and loving but has come back to the nest cold and aloof

Although the Swenson brood seem to find murdered corpses all over Lake Eden (see Lemon Meringue Pie for instance)that should run them out of town as jinxes, fans will fully enjoy Apple Turnover Murder as this is probably the best baked amateur sleuth of the series. Hannah has two mysteries to solve; first the whodunit and second what is wrong with Norman. Thus the heroine is at her best as she works the homicide trying to conceal from the town knowing her and Michelle were on the professor of love’s hot list. Besides an entertaining mystery and a dozen recipes, readers will learn much more about how the heroine feels re her two beaus and a look at the family.

Harriet Klausner