Candy Slain Murder
by Maddie Day
December arrives to provide a Christmassy backdrop to this cozy mystery set in the little town of South Lick, Indiana, where Robbie Jordan owns a breakfast and lunch restaurant that also features vintage cookware for sale. There is a cast of regulars making their appearance in Maddie Day’s Candy Slain Murder, but remain fearless, dear Reader, as the author’s talents include bringing the reader quickly on board with Robbie’s friends and family.
This mystery includes a cold case and a new murder case that appear to be connected. There are a number of characters with potential motives that Robbie has to sort through as she informally interviews various persons of interest as well as those whose knowledge might contribute to her investigations.
Another thread in the story is the surprise appearance of the mysterious half-brother of one of Robbie’s employees. Protective of those she loves, Robbie is concerned that this man’s claims might not be legitimate. Even his religious ties as a former Quaker turned Muslim are odd. They lead to a discussion of inclusiveness versus discrimination in South Lick with some B&B guests. This thread is interesting, but seems an afterthought as the couple appears only once besides meal times.
I enjoyed the book as I tried to discover the murderer or murderers along with Robbie. There were plenty of distractions to keep me guessing, although I had in mind a resolution that I wanted to see. Happily, I was correct, but it was fun to follow the characters to a satisfactory conclusion.
I would like to extend my thanks to Netgalley and to Kensington Books for giving me the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
Notes: 1. #8 in the Country Store Mysteries Series. I have read, out of order, a few of the books in this series. All, including Candy Slain Murder, have worked well as standalones.
2. Six recipes are included in the book and several are holiday appropriate.
3. I am puzzled by Robbie’s critical comment on the celebration of Christmas in the little town. They were having a Christmas tree lighting and a visit by Santa. Robbie said of the mayor, “Corrine could have slanted the celebration in a more secular direction.” As a Christian, I think the celebration was very secular. There was no nativity scene and no mention of the birth of Jesus, which is the origin of Christmas celebrations.
Publication: September 29, 2020—Kensington
“You’re more full of questions than one of them robots on the phone. At least you ain’t asking me to press one for this and two for that.”
Buck poured on the syrup and tore into his cranberry pancakes so fast I thought they would catch on fire.
“It’s one of them, you know, fifty percent of one and a dozen of the other.” My jaw dropped at his fractured metaphor.