Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Cozy Mystery Review ~ LADLE TO THE GRAVE by Connie Archer

Ladle to the Grave (Soup Lover’s Mystery, #4)
by: Connie Archer
Series: Soup Lover’s Mystery
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Release Date: March 3, 2015
Source: Publisher ~ Berkley

By the Spoonful is Snowflake, Vermont’s most popular soup shop, but owner Lucky Jamieson doesn’t have any time to enjoy her success—she’s too busy trying to keep a lid on false accusations against her loved ones…

It’s almost May, and some of the local ladies have organized a pagan celebration in the woods to welcome spring. But the evening goes terribly wrong when one of the attendees winds up dead, apparently poisoned by an herbal concoction prepared by Lucky’s grandfather, Jack.

Lucky’s sure her grandfather could not have made such a tragic mistake. But before she can clear him of suspicion, her best friend, Sophie, is diverted from planning her wedding to By the Spoonful chef Sage DuBois when she finds a dead man floating in the creek on her property. Now it’s up to Lucky to get both Sophie and Jack out of hot water before a killer stirs up more trouble…

Recipes included!

Even though I knew there was going to be murder involved, Ladle to the Grave was simply a cozy (pun intended) comfort read from beginning to end.  Connie Archer is one of my favorite cozy mystery authors.  I’ve read two of the three previous books in the Soup Lover’s Mystery Series and she seems to just get better.  The best or I should say, one of the best things about this series is that you don’t have to read the other books to enjoy this one.

Snowflake is a small town in Vermont with not a lot to do.  A group of local women form a women’s group to do something fun and interesting.  They decide to celebrate Beltane Eve, a night to celebrate the coming of Spring and the first May blooms.  Some people in Snowflake view Beltane Eve as a pagan ritual and are not happy the women have gotten together, in the middle of the woods, at midnight.  Once the ritual begins and the May wine starts to be passed around, one of the women drinks it and falls to her death.  Suspicion is cast on Jack Jamieson, Lucky’s grandfather, as he is the one who picked the ingredients for the drink.

Yes, Jack is getting older, but Lucky knows that there is no way Jack would have picked a deadly weed or plant and given it to someone.  Refusing to allow her grandfather to be convicted of something he didn’t do, Lucky starts her own little investigation.  However, investigating and trying to clear her grandfather’s name isn’t the only thing on Lucky’s plate.

Lucky is also making the wedding dress and planning the wedding of her best friend, Sophie Colgan.  Sophie is marrying Sage DuBois, the chef for By the Spoonful.  There hasn’t been a wedding in Snowflake in forever.  Everyone is talking about it, wondering what to wear and what to get the happy couple. The only problem is...it’s a small private ceremony and only about six people are invited, and not any of them are By the Spoonful regular customers.  Now, Lucky also has to figure out how to broach the subject with Sophie.

Wanting to take a break from everything wedding, Sophie plans a surprise trip for Lucky.  Only the surprise ends up being on Sophie and Lucky, when they make a unwanted discovery.  Guilt isn’t immediately put on Sophie, but you have to wonder since she does have a motive.

Connie Archer has managed to write a wonderful story of death, family, and friendship.  Showing just how far a person is willing to go in order to seek justice.  I will admit that Connie made my spidey senses tingle, which is a sign that there’s something off about someone.  But those senses didn’t enable me to figure out what was going on and why.  I was in the dark until the big reveal and I found myself in awe by the details.  Ladle to the Grave introduces a new character, at least one I didn’t know about before.  I can only hope to see them again in future books.  And speaking of future books, I can’t wait for the next book in this series.

**Received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest unbiased review.**

Rating: 5

Purchase Ladle to the Grave from:

A Soup Lover’s Mystery Series:

A Spoonful of Murder ~ Review
A Broth of Betrayal ~ Review coming soon
A Roux of Revenge ~ Review

You can read my Ladle to the Grave interview with Connie Archer here!

Connie Archer is the national bestselling author of the soup lover’s mystery series from Berkley Prime Crime: A SPOONFUL OF MURDER, A BROTH OF BETRAYAL, A ROUX OF REVENGE and LADLE TO THE GRAVE, will be released on March 3, 2015.

Connie was born and raised in New England. She now lives on the other coast.  

Places to find Connie Archer:

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