Whew, what a busy season! Launching my own second novel (The Secret Room) and welcoming Archer Mayor back to Kingdom Books (Tag Man, number 22 with Joe Gunther) pushed up against finishing the garden, canning applesause, freezing apple pie slices, making lemon-tomato conserve, pruning the apple trees (still need to prune the roses and raspberries). So of course, I've read some new mysteries for pleasure, in the little scraps of time I could find. Here are three:
author's website for more titles.
A Brisket, a Casket. It should be clear from the titles that the author is an avid punster, and Gwen Katz brings a dollop of New York Jewish culture to the Nashville, Tennessee, Jewish-style deli that she's inherited from her Uncle Murray. This second book plunges Katz and her crew into trouble at their first catering gig, when a wealthy guest, murdered, falls through the ceiling, splashing gravy and spoiling the event. Pit this amateur sleuth (and kitchen pro) against the local police investigation (they're not supposed to let the amateurs in on the hot trail, you know) and you've got issues as challenging as making Kosher dill pickles (see the recipes in the back of the book). The Jewish humor is a bit heavy-handed, but the plot is sweet, and the resolution satisfying. Hint to book sleuths: "Delia Rosen" is a pseudonym. When you've figured out the author's original name, check the relevant Wikipedia entry; it appears that those Internet sleuths don't yet connect this series to the author's amazing earlier work. It's worth keeping an eye on the series, since with such extensive experience behind this author, there are sure to be a lot of twists and turns already lined up for the future volumes. Hint: From what I can see, the author of the second book is NOT the same as for the first one!