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Posted December 9, 2008
Delicious Gourmet Detective tale
Although he is a grand chef, he hires himself out as the Gourmet Detective, locator of rare foods, herbs, and spices for a fee. He also provides lectures worldwide about recipes and the history of food. Solving homicides is not part of his job description, but has become part of his resume because he has brought four murderers to justice. <P>Chef Clive Armitage asks the Gourmet Detective to replace him as the speaker at a cooking conference at a luxurious Swiss spa. He accepts and upon arrival at the spa, he notices the guests are rich and famous. The Gourmet Detective arranges an assignation with attendee Kathleen Evans at the Seaweed Forest. When he arrives at their rendezvous spot, he thinks she is dead, but before he can check if she has a pulse, he passes out. When he regains consciousness, he learns that Kathleen checked out of the spa and flew to France. Although he wants to believe the spa¿s story, he can¿t dismiss his own suspicions, especially when a second attendee disappears in a similar fashion. Unable to resist temptation, the Gourmet Detective places himself in jeopardy trying to uncover the truth. <P>A HEALTHY PLACE TO DIE is a light hearted, but fast paced culinary mystery that will be fully enjoyed by anyone who relishes a bumbling amateur sleuth tale. Peter King always addresses his lead character as The Gourmet Detective, a useful plot device to keep the audience from getting too attached to the protagonist. This serves to focus attention on the creative plot and forces the reader into trying to solve the mystery. The only quibble the audience will have about this delightful mystery is that the dishes described in great detail do not come with recipes. <P>Harriet Klausner
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