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You Cannoli Die Once by Shelley Costa
Finding a man in your dumpster and a body in the kitchen might seem unusual, but not for Eve Angelotta and the crew from Miracolo Italian Restaurant. Shelly Costa's, You Cannoli Die Once will have readers laughing, right along with solving the whodunit, in this well wri...
Finding a man in your dumpster and a body in the kitchen might seem unusual, but not for Eve Angelotta and the crew from Miracolo Italian Restaurant. Shelly Costa's, You Cannoli Die Once will have readers laughing, right along with solving the whodunit, in this well written cozy mystery. With an over-the-top Italian family, a ban on cannoli's and a murdered boyfriend it couldn't be anything but... eccentric and exciting! What I liked: The Italian Restaurant mystery series starts off with a bang, in You Cannoli Die Once. Shelley Costa's wit and humor take center stage as she creates an Italian American family that will have readers laughing one minutes and crying the next. Eve was once a dancer, but now she's the head chef in her families Italian restaurant outside Philly. She not only has to contend with her customers, but her formidable Nonna, Maria Pia and let's just say she's a hand full. Costa does such a good job building this family, from their eccentric grandmother, right down to the last cousin, and there are a ton of them. Each character was well defined, even if they were a little hard to sort through. With all the customers, friends, new acquaintances and everybody else that stopped into the restaurant it took me a while to keep them all straight. One of the hazards of a large cast in the first book in a series. But once Costa gets the reader through that it was mostly smooth sailing into the mystery. When Eve's grandmother's boyfriend ends up dead, she has a hard time trying to figure out a way to keep her out of jail. In fact she gets herself into a situation that could land her there as well. I liked all the hustle and bustle of the restaurant and the way finding the body was almost anticlimactic after finding out Eve's cousin might have been banging a married man. The whole dynamic of the family was just as interesting as the mystery. I thought Costa used the idea of what American's think of as an Italian family to her advantage here. It added a great element of humor to the story and kept the mystery light and fun. I found myself a little concerned about how they described the jail in this one, only because it reminded me a little bit of Mayberry instead of Philly. You don't usually get to talk to prisoners through the bars in a big city and I found that slightly disingenuous compared to the rest of the book. I found most of the situations in the book believable other than that and I thought Costa did a good job of making parts of the mystery hard to figure out and other parts kind of self explanatory. A good tactic overall. Bottom Line: Overall this was a good read. The big Italian family was a hoot and I found them very endearing. I did have some trouble figuring out who was related to who, who was a friend, who was one of the musicians, who ran the business next door and so on, but once I got that down I liked this one a lot. I liked the idea that some parts of the mystery were easy to figure out while other parts were more complex and took some time. A good start to the series!
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Posted June 12, 2013
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