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Among the Departed by Vicki Delany
Body on the Bayou by Ellen Byron
The Box in the Woods by Maureen Johnson
Buttercream Bump Off
Camp by Lev A.C. Rosen
A Crafty Killing by Lorraine Bartlett
Darling by K. Ancrum
Deadly Ever After by Eva Gates
Death by the Dozen by Jenn McKinlay
Dough Boys by Paula Chase
Flipped for Murder by Maddie Day
The Ghost and Mrs. McClure by Alice Kimberly
Grilled for Murder by Maddie Day
A High-End Finish by Kate Carlisle
Hollow Kingdom by Kira Jane Buxton
Jukebox by Nidhi Chanani
Killer Chardonnay by Kate Lansing
Maybe Maybe Marisol Rainey by Erin Entrada Kelly
Miss Meteor by Tehlor Kay Mejia and Anna-Marie McLemore
Much Ado About Muffin by Victoria Hamilton
One Way or Another by Kara McDowell
Ozma by Candace Robinson and Amber R. Duell
A Problematic Paradox by Eliot Sappingfield
Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Read and Gone by Allison Brook
Some Places More Than Others by Renée Watson
Stargazer by Anne Hillerman
Tune It Out by Jamie Sumner
What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty
Wicked Things by John Allison and Max Sarin (Illustrations)
Witches and Wedding Cake by Bailey Cates

June 2021 Sources

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5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
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2 stars: OK
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Death by the Dozen: 07/21/21

Death by the Dozen by Jenn McKinlay

Death by the Dozen by Jenn McKinlay is the third in the Cupcake Bakery mystery series. Mel and Angie are participating in the Challenge to the Chef event. Mel is friends with a number of the judges from her time in culinary school. Then after the first round, her mentor Vic is found dead in a portable freezer.

Straightaway I knew who had murdered Vic. Figuring something out early can break the enjoyment of a mystery. Here, it didn't. McKinlay includes enough interesting details on planning recipes for a contest where there will be an unknown by required ingredient that I was fully engrossed with the overall story.

That Mel and Angie took longer to see the obvious is understandable. First there's of course the competition. There's the shock of the mentor's death. Angie meanwhile is concerned about her traveling boyfriend. Finally, the murder goes after Mel and Angie directly.

As I expected after the close of Buttercream Bump Off, the old man who helped with the previous investigation is now working part time for them. Now in book three, a new employee joins the force in the form of a Goth intern. Oz reminds me of Trixie from the Book Town mystery series by Lorna Barrett. I hope he is a recurring character.

The fourth book is Red Velvet Revenge (2012).

Five stars

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