Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder (Hannah Swensen Series #1)

Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder (Hannah Swensen Series #1)

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by Joanne Fluke
     
 

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Discover the delicious mystery that started it all!

No one cooks up a delectable, suspense-filled mystery quite like Hannah Swensen, Joanne Fluke’s dessert-baking, red-haired heroine whose gingersnaps are as tart as her comebacks, and whose penchant for solving crimes one delicious clue at a time has made her a bestselling favorite. And it all began on these pages

Overview

Discover the delicious mystery that started it all!

No one cooks up a delectable, suspense-filled mystery quite like Hannah Swensen, Joanne Fluke’s dessert-baking, red-haired heroine whose gingersnaps are as tart as her comebacks, and whose penchant for solving crimes one delicious clue at a time has made her a bestselling favorite. And it all began on these pages, with a bakery, a murder, and some suddenly scandalous chocolate-chip crunchies. Featuring a bonus short story and brand new, mouthwatering recipes, this limited edition of the very first Hannah Swensen mystery is sure to have readers coming back for seconds.

Hannah Swenson already has her hands full trying to dodge her mother’s attempts to marry her off while running The Cookie Jar, Lake Eden, Minnesota’s most popular bakery. But once Ron LaSalle, the beloved delivery man from the Cozy Cow Dairy, is found murdered behind her bakery with Hannah’s famous Chocolate Chip Crunchies scattered around him, her life just can’t get any worse. Determined not to let her cookies get a bad reputation, she sets out to track down a killer.

Who would have the sheer audacity and the motive to kill the most punctual delivery man Hannah ever had? Topping the list is the high school football coach. What exactly was his wife doing, making the rounds with the milkman? Could Max Turner, owner of Cozy Cow Dairy, have had a secret he didn’t want to share with his top employee? The more Hannah snoops, the more suspects turn up. Why has Lake Eden’s most prominent prodigal son, Benton Woodley, just resurfaced? And what about the mysterious Mr. Harris who seemed interested in buying the property next to the dairy, but then disappeared? This is one murder that’s starting to leave a very bad taste in Hannah’s mouth. And if she doesn’t watch her back, Hannah’s sweet life may get burned to a crisp.

Filled with a healthy sprinkling of humor and a delightful assortment of nuts, CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE MURDER serves up a great new mystery series and introduces a delicious, down-home sleuth that mystery readers will surely savor for years to come.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Hannah Swensen, amateur sleuth, runs an eat-in cookie establishment in little Lake Eden, MN. When the well-liked milkman is murdered in the alley near her shop, Hannah joins forces with the deputy sheriff, who just happens to be her brother-in-law. While delivering cookies, catering scouting events, and otherwise gadding about the community, Hannah gathers important clues. Family and other connections, concern with finding Hannah a "steady," and several cookie recipes lend this debut series a small-town, rural flavor. This mystery is pleasant and easy to take. Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.\

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780758269324
Publisher:
Kensington
Publication date:
01/01/2011
Series:
Hannah Swensen Series , #1
Product dimensions:
4.10(w) x 6.50(h) x 1.20(d)

Read an Excerpt

Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder

A Hannah Swensen Mystery


By JOANNE FLUKE

KENSINGTON PUBLISHING CORP.

Copyright © 2006 H.L. Swensen, Inc.
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-61773-124-2


CHAPTER 1

Hannah Swensen slipped into the old leather bomber jacket that she'd rescued from the Helping Hands thrift store and reached down to pick up the huge orange tomcat that was rubbing against her ankles. "Okay, Moishe. You can have one refill, but that's it until tonight."

As she carried Moishe into the kitchen and set him down by his food bowl, Hannah remembered the day he'd set up camp outside her condo door. He'd looked positively disreputable, covered with matted fur and grime, and she'd immediately taken him in. Who else would adopt a twenty-five-pound, half-blind cat with a torn ear? Hannah had named him Moishe, and though he certainly wouldn't have won any prizes at the Lake Eden Cat Fanciers' Club, there had been an instant bond between them. They were both battle-worn — Hannah from weekly confrontations with her mother, and Moishe from his hard life on the streets.

Moishe rumbled in contentment as Hannah filled his bowl. He seemed properly grateful that he no longer had to scrounge for food and shelter and he showed his appreciation in countless ways. Just this morning, Hannah had found the hindquarters of a mouse in the center of the kitchen table, right next to the drooping African violet that she kept forgetting to water. While most of her female contemporaries would have screamed for their husbands to remove the disgusting sight, Hannah had picked up the carcass by the tail and praised Moishe lavishly for keeping her condo rodent-free.

"See you tonight, Moishe." Hannah gave him an affectionate pat and snatched up her car keys. She was just pulling on her leather gloves, preparing to leave, when the phone rang.

Hannah glanced at the apple-shaped wall clock, which she'd found at a garage sale. It was only sixA.M. Her mother wouldn't call this early, would she?

Moishe looked up from his bowl with an expression that Hannah interpreted as sympathy. He didn't like Delores Swensen and he had done nothing to hide his feelings when she'd dropped in for surprise visits at her daughter's condo. After suffering through several pairs of shredded pantyhose, Delores had decided that she would limit her socializing to their Tuesday-night mother-daughter dinners.

Hannah picked up the phone, cutting off the answering machine in midmessage, and sighed as she heard her mother's voice. "Hello, Mother. I'm ready to walk out the door, so we'll have to keep this short. I'm already late for work."

Moishe raised his tail and shook it, pointing his posterior at the phone. Hannah stifled a giggle at his antics and gave him a conspiratorial wink. "No, Mother, I didn't give Norman my phone number. If he wants to contact me, he'll have to look it up."

Hannah frowned as her mother went into her familiar litany on the proper way to attract a man. Their dinner last night had been a disaster. When she'd arrived at her mother's house, Hannah had encountered two additional guests: her mother's newly widowed neighbor, Mrs. Carrie Rhodes, and her son, Norman. Hannah had been obligated to make polite conversation with Norman over sickeningly sweet Hawaiian pot roast and a chocolate-covered nut cake from the Red Owl Grocery as their respective mothers beamed happily and remarked on what a charming couple they made.

"Look, Mother, I really have to ..." Hannah stopped and rolled her eyes at the ceiling. Once Delores got started on a subject, it was impossible to get a word in edgewise. Her mother believed that a woman approaching thirty ought to be married, and even though Hannah had argued that she liked her life the way it was, it hadn't prevented Delores from introducing her to every single, widowed, or divorced man who'd set foot in Lake Eden.

"Yes, Mother. Norman seems very nice, but ..." Hannah winced as her mother continued to wax eloquent over Norman's good qualities. What on earth had convinced Delores that her eldest daughter would be interested in a balding dentist, several years her senior, whose favorite topic of conversation was gum disease? "Excuse me, Mother, but I'm running late and ..."

Moishe seemed to sense that his mistress was frustrated because he reached out with one orange paw and flipped over his food bowl. Hannah stared at him in surprise for a moment, and then she began to grin.

"Gotta run, Mother. Moishe just knocked over his food bowl and I've got Meow Mix all over the floor." Hannah cut off her mother's comments about Norman's earning capabilities in midbreath and hung up the phone. Then she swept up the cat food, dumped it in the trash, and poured in fresh food for Moishe. She added a couple of kitty treats, Moishe's reward for being so clever, and left him munching contentedly as she rushed out the door.

Hannah hurried down the steps to the underground garage, unlocked the door to her truck, and climbed in behind the wheel. When she'd opened her business, she'd bought a used Chevy Suburban from Cyril Murphy's car lot. She'd painted it candy-apple red, a color that was sure to attract notice wherever it was parked, and arranged for the name of her business — The Cookie Jar — to be painted in gold letters on the front doors. She'd even ordered a vanity license plate that read: "COOKIES."

As Hannah drove up the ramp that led to ground level, she met her next-door neighbor coming home. Phil Plotnik worked nights at DelRay Manufacturing, and Hannah rolled down the window to pass on the warning that their water would be shut off between ten and noon. Then she used her gate card to exit the complex and turned North onto Old Lake Road.

The interstate ran past Lake Eden, but most of the locals used Old Lake Road to get to town. It was the scenic route, winding around Eden Lake. When the tourists arrived in the summer, some of them were confused by the names. Hannah always explained it with a smile when they asked. The lake was named "Eden Lake," and the town that nestled next to its shore was called "Lake Eden."

There was a real nip in the air this morning, not unusual for the third week in October. Autumn was brief in Minnesota, a few weeks of turning leaves that caused everyone to snap photographs of the deep reds, gaudy oranges, and bright yellows. After the last leaf had fallen, leaving the branches stark and bare against the leaden skies, the cold north winds would start to blow. Then the first snowfall would arrive to the delight of the children and the stoic sighs of the adults. While sledding, ice-skating and snowball fights might be fun for the kids, winter also meant mounds of snow that had to be shoveled, virtual isolation when the roads were bad, and temperatures that frequently dropped down to thirty or even forty below zero.

The summer people had left Eden Lake right after the Labor Day weekend to return to their snug winter homes in the cities. Their cabins on the lakeshore stood vacant, their pipes wrapped with insulation to keep them from freezing in the subzero winter temperatures, and their windows boarded up against the icy winds that swept across the frozen surface of the lake. Now only the locals were in residence and the population of Lake Eden, which nearly quadrupled over the summer months, was down to less than three thousand.

As she idled at the stoplight on Old Lake Road and Dairy Avenue, Hannah saw a familiar sight. Ron LaSalle was standing by the dock of the Cozy Cow Dairy, loading his truck for his commercial route. By this time of the morning, Ron had finished delivering dairy products to his residential customers, placing their milk, cream, and eggs in the insulated boxes the dairy provided. The boxes were a necessity in Minnesota. They kept the contents cool in the summer and protected them from freezing in the winter.

Ron was cupping his jaw with one hand and his pose was pensive, as if he were contemplating things more serious than the orders he had yet to deliver. Hannah would be seeing him later, when he delivered her supplies, and she made a mental note to ask him what he'd been thinking about. Ron prided himself on his punctuality and the Cozy Cow truck would pull up at her back door at precisely seven thirty-five. After Ron had delivered her daily order, he'd come into the coffee shop for a quick cup of coffee and a warm cookie. Hannah would see him again at three in the afternoon, right after he'd finished his routes. That was when he picked up his standing order, a dozen cookies to go. Ron kept them in his truck overnight so that he could have cookies for breakfast the next morning.

Ron looked up, spotted her at the stoplight, and raised one hand in a wave. Hannah gave him a toot of her horn as the light turned green and she drove on by. With his dark wavy hair and well-muscled body, Ron was certainly easy on the eyes. Hannah's youngest sister, Michelle, swore that Ron was every bit as handsome as Tom Cruise and she'd been dying to date him when she was in high school. Even now, when Michelle came home from Macalester College, she never failed to ask about Ron.

Three years ago, everyone had expected the star quarterback of the Lake Eden Gulls to be drafted by the pros, but Ron had torn a ligament in the final game of his high school career, ending his hopes for a spot with the Minnesota Vikings. There were times when Hannah felt sorry for Ron. She was sure that driving a Cozy Cow delivery truck wasn't the glorious future he'd envisioned for himself. But Ron was still a local hero. Everyone in Lake Eden remembered his remarkable game-winning touchdown at the state championships. The trophy he'd won was on display in a glass case at the high school and he volunteered his time as an unpaid assistant coach for the Lake Eden Gulls. Perhaps it was better to be a big fish in a little pond than a third-string quarterback who warmed the Vikings' bench.

No one else was on the streets this early, but Hannah made sure that her speedometer read well below the twenty-five-mile limit. Herb Beeseman, their local law enforcement officer, was known to lie in wait for unwary residents who were tempted to tread too heavily on the accelerator. Though Hannah had never been the recipient of one of Herb's speeding tickets, her mother was still livid about the fine that Marge Beeseman's youngest son had levied against her.

Hannah turned at the corner of Main and Fourth and drove into the alley behind her shop. The square white building sported two parking spots, and Hannah pulled her truck into one of them. She didn't bother to unwind the cord that was wrapped around her front bumper and plug it into the strip of power outlets on the rear wall of the building. The sun was shining and the announcer on the radio had promised that the temperatures would reach the high forties today. There was no need to use her head bolt heater for another few weeks, but when winter arrived and the mercury dropped below freezing, she'd need it to ensure that her engine would start.

Once she'd opened the door and slid out of her Suburban, Hannah locked it carefully behind her. There wasn't much crime in Lake Eden, but Herb Beeseman also left tickets on any vehicle that he found parked and unlocked. Before she could cover the distance to the rear door of the bakery, Claire Rodgers pulled up in her little blue Toyota and parked in back of the tan building next to Hannah's shop.

Hannah stopped and waited for Claire to get out of her car. She liked Claire and she didn't believe the rumors that floated around town about her affair with the mayor. "Hi, Claire. You're here early today."

"I just got in a new shipment of party dresses and they have to be priced." Claire's classically beautiful face lit up in a smile. "The holidays are coming, you know."

Hannah nodded. She wasn't looking forward to Thanksgiving and Christmas with her mother and sisters, but it was an ordeal that had to be endured for the sake of family peace.

"You should stop by, Hannah." Claire gave her an appraising look, taking in the bomber jacket that had seen better days and the old wool watch cap that Hannah had pulled over her frizzy red curls. "I have a stunning little black cocktail dress that would do wonders for you."

Hannah smiled and nodded, but she had all she could do to keep from laughing as Claire unlocked the rear door to Beau Monde Fashions and stepped inside. Where could she wear a cocktail dress in Lake Eden? No one hosted any cocktail parties and the only upscale restaurant in town had closed down right after the tourists had left. Hannah couldn't remember the last time she'd gone out to a fancy dinner. For that matter, she couldn't remember the last time that anyone had asked her out on a date.

Hannah unlocked her back door and pushed it open. The sweet smell of cinnamon and molasses greeted her, and she began to smile. She'd mixed up several batches of cookie dough last night and the scent still lingered. She flipped on the lights, hung her jacket on the hook by the door, and fired up the two industrial gas ovens that sat against the back wall. Her assistant, Lisa Herman, would be here at seven-thirty to start the baking.

The next half hour passed quickly as Hannah chopped, melted, measured, and mixed ingredients. By trial and error, she'd found that her cookies tasted better if she limited herself to batches that she could mix by hand. Her recipes were originals, developed in her mother's kitchen when she was a teenager. Delores thought baking was a chore and she'd been happy to delegate that task to her eldest daughter so that she could devote all of her energies to collecting antiques.

At ten past seven, Hannah carried the last bowl of cookie dough to the cooler and stacked the utensils she'd used in her industrial-sized dishwasher. She hung up her work apron, removed the paper cap she'd used to cover her curls, and headed off to the coffee shop to start the coffee.

A swinging restaurant-style door separated the bakery from the coffee shop. Hannah pushed it open and stepped inside, flipping on the old-fashioned globe fixtures she'd salvaged from a defunct ice-cream parlor in a neighboring town. She walked to the front windows, pulled aside the chintz curtains, and surveyed the length of Main Street. Nothing was moving; it was still too early, but Hannah knew that within the hour, the chairs that surrounded the small round tables in her shop would be filled with customers. The Cookie Jar was a meeting place for the locals, a choice spot to exchange gossip and plan out the day over heavy white mugs of strong coffee and freshly baked cookies from her ovens.

The stainless-steel coffee urn gleamed brightly and Hannah smiled as she filled it with water and measured out the coffee. Lisa had scoured it yesterday, restoring it to its former splendor. Lisa was a pure godsend when it came to running the bakery and the coffee shop. She saw what needed to be done, did it without being asked, and had even come up with a few cookie recipes of her own to add to Hannah's files. It was a real pity that Lisa hadn't used her academic scholarship to go on to college, but her father, Jack Herman, was suffering from Alzheimer's and Lisa had decided to stay home to take care of him.

Hannah removed three eggs from the refrigerator behind the counter and dropped them, shells and all, into the bowl with the coffee grounds. Then she broke them open with a heavy spoon and added a dash of salt. Once she'd mixed up the eggs and shells with the coffee grounds, Hannah scraped the contents of the bowl into the basket and flipped on the switch to start the coffee.

A few minutes later, the coffee began to perk and Hannah sniffed the air appreciatively. Nothing smelled better than freshly brewed coffee, and everyone in Lake Eden said that her coffee was the best. Hannah tied on the pretty chintz apron she wore for serving her customers and ducked back through the swinging door to give Lisa her instructions.

"Bake the Chocolate Chip Crunches first, Lisa." Hannah gave Lisa a welcoming smile.

"They're already in the ovens, Hannah." Lisa looked up from the stainless-steel work surface, where she was scooping out dough with a melon-baller and placing the perfectly round spheres into a small bowl filled with sugar. She was only nineteen, ten years younger than Hannah was, and her petite form was completely swaddled in the huge white baker's apron she wore. "I'm working on the Molasses Crackles for the Boy Scout Awards Banquet now."


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder by JOANNE FLUKE. Copyright © 2006 H.L. Swensen, Inc.. Excerpted by permission of KENSINGTON PUBLISHING CORP..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Meet the Author

JOANNE FLUKE is the New York Times bestselling author of the Hannah Swensen mysteries, which include Double Fudge Brownie Murder, Blackberry Pie Murder, Cinnamon Roll Murder, and the book that started it all, Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder. That first installment in the series premiered as Murder, She Baked:  A Chocolate Chip Cookie Mystery on the Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Channel. Like Hannah Swensen, Joanne Fluke was born and raised in a small town in rural Minnesota, but now lives in Southern California. Please visit her online at www.JoanneFluke.com

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Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 639 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is a good weekend read. If you're just starting with mysteries (like I was when I read it), then its a nice place to start. Its nothing too out there and it has a more down to earth feeling to it. Its got a good start. And the recipes are entertaining. The lead character is also someone easy to identify with, and it'll have you wishing you lived in a small time like hers (well, one without all the murders). I think its a nice combination of chick-lit and mystery and highly recommend it if you're looking for a quick read or something to get your mind off of work. Joanne Fluke definitely has a lot of talent.
BookaholicTracy More than 1 year ago
Joanne Fluke does a wonderful job at creating an amazing plot. I stayed up late to read it and enjoyed every minute. will buy more.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Hannah Swenson is able to keep the towns folk in delicious cookies while solving a murder mystery. She does all this without finding the need to use foul language or sex to do it. I tried several of the cookie recipes she includes throughout the book and found them to be very good. My family and friends enjoyed them. A very good read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a great series. I have read all of them that are out. They are like chocolate. One is never enough.
harstan More than 1 year ago
Thirty-year old Hannah Swensen lives in Lake Eden, Minnesota, a town with a winter population of about three thousand residents. Though her mother lives near her, Hannah likes living in her own condo shared with a one-eyed cat, Moishe. Hannah enjoys being single and resents her mother¿s efforts to fix her up with seemingly every bachelor in the state. Hannah owns and operates the Cookie Jar, a combination coffeehouse and catering service. Her business is thriving but dramatically increases when Hannah discovers the murdered body of dairy delivery person Ron La Salle in the parking space behind her shop.

Hannah¿s brother-in-law Winnekta County Deputy Sheriff Bill Todd asks her to help him solve the case. He knows she is a good sleuth and he feels he will get a promotion if they succeed. The enthusiastic Hannah dives into the investigation to uncover the identity of a killer. However, unlike a cat, Hannah does not have nine lives and if she gets too close she might lose the one she has.

Readers will need to make a quantum leap of faith to believe that law enforcement official will ask a civilian to help on a homicide case. That flaw permeates a well-written novel as Bill continuously encourages his sister-in-law Hannah to make inquiries that place her in danger. The story line is fast-paced and the fully developed characters except for Bill (who places career ahead of loved ones) are all likable. Throughout the tale are recipes for cookies as expected from a ¿culinary¿ mystery. Joanne Fluke shows she is no fluke as an author of amateur sleuth tales as the novel is quite interesting. It does needs a different plot device for Hannah to enter the investigation realistically.

Harriet Klausner

Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a great mystery book. It is for all ages because it a good clean story. It is hard to find a mystery book that has "NO" sex or "NO vulgar language. I plan on reading the rest of the series. I love the recipes.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved the Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder book. It is the only one I have read. I just started reading it the other day. I thought that it was neat to have the recipes written out in the book. I also thought that the characters were really cool and believable. Hope to get the second one soon. Trying to read them in order.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A good quick read and the recipies were actually great
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
fun reading and great receipes
Piano502 More than 1 year ago
The plot was great. I am now going to read the whole series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A great blend of mystery, romance and humor. I also love having the recipes.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Easy reading and enjoyable. I especially liked the recipes along the way. Have made two of the cookies and both were delicious. Didn't realize they were a series that should be read in order, but since this was #1, I guess it's not a big deal at this point.
smilingturtle More than 1 year ago
This book is an easy read... I like her writing style. Love that she includes the recipes for the cookies she talks about in the story. I also like the fact that the main character is trying to be an detective making references to the many csi type shows and movies. Fun read... Definitely recommend.
nancydrew123 More than 1 year ago
This is a delightful series set in Lake Eden, Minnesota. I love the quirky small town setting and the bakery theme. In this first book in the series I thought the author did a great job of introducing the main characters. I wanted to light the fireplace, curl up and grab a cookie when I read this book. Hannah is a likeable character with a humorous relationship with her family... especially her mother. The mystery kept me guessing. This book doesn't have a deep sub plot with lots of twists and turns but it's a fun, quick read that draws you into the small MN town and makes you want to come back for more.
boadiccea More than 1 year ago
I went into this book expecting a bit of fluff. I have to say, the mystery was actually quite good, and I found myself LOVING the characters! A very fun read. I immediately bought the 2nd book in the series. I also look forward to trying some of the cookie recipes found between chapters!
MissMarie5 More than 1 year ago
I wanted to read a light hearted book. Even though this was a murder mystery, the characters were all great. The recipes are fantastic!!! I can not wait to read the next one I downloaded!!
Anonymous 10 months ago
john19713 More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was such a fun read! I can't wait to read the next one!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I cant wait to continue on with the series. Really enjoyed this book!
ILuvBooks25 More than 1 year ago
After reading an ARC of A Blackberry Pie murder I was very much interested in reading the rest of the series starting with the first book. I think that Joanne did a great job of developing the back story on the main character Hannah and setting the scene of the book in Lake Eden. However, I felt that book fell short of what I was expecting as there was just too much fluff put in the book between the two murders in the book. I think this fluff was when she stuck too much time in to the different people she investigated for the murder. I felt either the chapters could have been slimmed down or combined into one chapter. In addition, I felt like the author gave a little too much back story on Hannah's sister Andrea. If Andrea would have played a bigger part in the book then i would have totally understood. However, she only came in to the story three, maybe four times in the whole book.  Lastly, the last part that I felt the author could have spent more time on was when she had the murder divulge why they killed two people. It had very little lead up to it happening which was weird considering of how the rest of the book was read.  All in all for a first book in the series I would consider it a decent book but not one that I would read again. I think that the rest of the series is worth reading as I have read a later book in the series and had liked that one better. I definitely think Joanne created the perfect character in this book series and we will just have to continue to read the books to see how she continues to have Hannah grow and see her love life flourish.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I’ve been reading mysteries since the day I picked up my first Nancy Drew book in 3rd grade so many decades ago.  I found this to be a light read and guessed the murderer immediately.  BUT, I was wrong so back to the story and zeroed in on another person.  Wrong again!  “OK, just read the story” I told myself and I was surprised when I found out “who done it” as they say on TV.  Last night the Hallmark channel had this movie.  Usually I prefer the movies over the books; but, in this case the book dug deeper into each character and this was lost in the movie.  Both are good entertainment; but, if you have seen the movie and even though the ending is the same a lot is missed in not reading the book.
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Lindsie More than 1 year ago
Hanna Swensen is the owner of the Cookie Jar. While baking cookies is her number one priority, fighting crime takes second place. In this novel we have an amateur sleuth on our hands that works harder than local law enforcement. While some points are a bit unbelievable (how Hanna is much more tuned into investigating than Bill- her police officer brother in law) the book it utterly delicious. I love the characters and the recipes that are included in the book. For those who are fans of Cozy Mystery's I suggest checking this one out! It is the first in the series and I guarantee you will love what you read. A+