Berkley, Dec 7 2010, $7.99
The Midwestern town of Kindred is normally a serene quiet place, but this year the townsfolk seem to face one calamity after another. In the middle of most of the disasters is the Cackleberry Club; a café, bookstore and knitting community center. The Troubles begin when one of the owners Suzanne walks mayororal candidate Chuck Peebler out the door of the café when she hears a noise. Peebler was hit and killed immediately by an arrow.
The sheriff has no clues as to who wanted Peebler dead. Soon after that homicide, Deputy Wilbur Halpern, who uncovered an illegal dog fighting arena, is murdered too on the historical Quilt Trail. Suzanne and the ladies of the Cackleberry Club investigate with the support of the despondent sheriff and the lethal antipathy of the unknown killer who threatens her and firebombs her car.
The Cackleberry soft boiled mysteries (see Eggs in Purgatory and Eggs Benedict Arnold) are special due to friendship of the ladies who have each other’s back. Although the murder mystery prime plot is appropriately somber, the three club owners and their customers bring mouth watering recipes and amusing eccentricity to the entertaining plot. Readers will enjoy these eggs over easy amateur sleuth.