Crunch Time

Crunch Time

3.6 132
by Diane Mott Davidson

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When the rental house shared by chef Yolanda Garcia and her irrepressible aunt Ferdinanda is destroyed by arson, the pair moves in with cop-turned-PI Ernest McLeod. But then Ernest is shot dead and his house is set on fire, nearly killing Yolanda, Ferdinanda, and their good friend, Colorado caterer Goldy Schulz, along with nine beagle puppies that Ernest had

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When the rental house shared by chef Yolanda Garcia and her irrepressible aunt Ferdinanda is destroyed by arson, the pair moves in with cop-turned-PI Ernest McLeod. But then Ernest is shot dead and his house is set on fire, nearly killing Yolanda, Ferdinanda, and their good friend, Colorado caterer Goldy Schulz, along with nine beagle puppies that Ernest had recently rescued from a puppy mill.

Concerned for her friends, Goldy invites them to stay with her. But even her house isn’t safe. After a failed break-in and the discovery of a second body, the intrepid Goldy decides to swap her chef’s hat for a sleuthing cap. Now she’s got to move fast because it’s crunch time and a killer is getting dangerously close.

Editorial Reviews

Richmond Times-Dispatch
“Fans who relished Davidson’s previous culinary mysteries will assuredly eat up this newest one, too.”
Richmond Times-Dispatch on
Booklist on
“Fans who relished Davidson's previous culinary mysteries will assuredly eat up this newest one, too.”
Richmond Times-Dispatch on Crunch Time
Booklist on Crunch Time
“Fans who relished Davidson’s previous culinary mysteries will assuredly eat up this newest one, too.”
Library Journal
First, the apartment building where Yolanda Garcia lives with her aunt is torched; then, when they move in with PI Ernest McLeod, he's shot dead and his house is set ablaze. So Goldy Schulz invites them to stay with her—and swings into action. Morrow's lead fiction title for April and, with a one-day laydown, a 250,000-copy first printing, and a six-city tour, another nice showing for Davidson.

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Culinary Mystery Series, #16
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
4.20(w) x 6.70(h) x 1.50(d)

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Crunch Time 3.6 out of 5 based on 1 ratings. 132 reviews.
harstan More than 1 year ago
In Aspen Meadow, Colorado, an arsonist burns down the rental in which chef Yolanda Garcia and her Great Aunt Ferdinanda lived. Shook, the pair moves into the abode of former cop turned private investigator Ernest McLeod. However, soon after the two females move in, he is murdered and his house set on fire. Goldilocks Catering owner Goldy Schulz invites her friend and the aunt to move in with her as the Fatally Flakey caterer will not allow a homicidal arsonist to scare her from doing the right thing for friends. Her husband Sheriff's Department investigator Tom and police officer John Bertran as Ernest's former partner lead the inquiry. When someone tries but fails to break into Goldy's home, a cop moves in to protect the three women. However Goldy, who not one to stew in silence, investigates who targets Yolanda and Ferdinanda, and why. The latest Goldy Colorado culinary cozy (see Sweet Revenge) is an entertaining whodunit as once again the amateur sleuth competes with law enforcement to uncover the identity of the culprit. The mystery is personal as the killer murdered a friend and threatened to harm another long time pal of the heroine (the chefs worked together in a defunct restaurant), but it is the home invasion partly thwarted by Jake the bloodhound that sets Goldy in motion. With a strong late spin, fans will relish this taut suspense thriller. Harriet Klausner
Dollycas More than 1 year ago
Goldy Schultz, Colorado caterer, is in hot water again as she tries to help her friend, employee and fellow chef, Yolanda Garcia. It seems Yolanda is having a bit of bad luck after breaking up with her "boyfriend". The rental she is sharing with her great aunt Ferdinanda burns to the ground and arson is suspected. Then they move in with cop turned private detective Ernest McLeod. Shortly thereafter Ernest is killed and his house goes up in flames. Goldy, Yolanda, Ferinanda and nine puppies rescued from a puppy mill, barely escape with their lives. Goldy takes them all in thinking that her house will surely be safe since her husband is a cop but they are not even safe there. The house is almost burglarized but Golldy's son foils that attempt. Then another body is found. Goldy decides it is Crunch Time and jumps from the frying pan into the investigation of the fires and the murders. Can she stay one step ahead of the killer and keep herself from being their next victim? My Thoughts I have enjoyed this series since Catering to Nobody (Goldy, Book 1) but by the 16th installment it must get harder to write for characters. I really had a hard time finishing this book. The main plot and subplots were very good and I love these characters but the book seem so dragged out and really long. It is over 400 pages and 100 could have easily been cut. The last installment came out in April of 2009 which leads me to believe the author may have struggled a bit with this one and it shows. An the positive side, Aunt Ferninada is hilarious, her little digs and her amazing wheelchair carried this story. If you are a fan of this series you will want to read it to keep up with the characters you love but I recommend picking it up at the library unless you have the whole series collected on your keeper shelf. It will be interesting to see if this is the last we read about Goldy Schultz or if the author brings back a new installment more like the previous editions I loved. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the Amazon Vine Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
PSMN More than 1 year ago
I was really disappointed. My favorite Goldy books are when I feel like I am in her kitchen watching her cook while she tells me a great story. This one felt like she was running around in a frenzy trying to solve this murder, barely cooking, and Archie was an afterthought. I was thinking, she can't help herself. She has an obsessive compulsive disorder.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is by far the worst I've ever read. But let me correct that. I was so bored by this book I was unable to finish it. I returned it to the library without getting half way through it. I think the author has run out of viable ideas for plots.
SA_Reader More than 1 year ago
Just finished reading Crunch Time and I have loved all the Goldy books-this one was way over the top. Too much of her breaking into and stealing things that would not be good in court. A few laughs but most of the time I was just shaking my head saying "Oh no, Not AGAIN!" because Goldy was doing something she should not be doing time and time again. As I say, Too Much Already! Diane took a good thing and went too far over the edge.
Books_And_Chocolate More than 1 year ago
Colorado caterer Goldy Schulz tries to help her longtime friend and fellow chef Yolanda Garcia when the rental house shared by Yolanda and her Aunt Ferdinanda is destroyed by arson. The women move in with friend and private investigator Ernest McLeod but he is shot dead and his house is set on fire, nearly killing Goldy, Yolanda, Ferdinanda, and nine beagle puppies that Ernest had recently rescued from a puppy mill. Goldy invites the women to stay with her family while the murder is investigated but after an attempted break-in, an ex-boyfriend stalking Yolanda, and Goldy discovering clues about missing gems that Earnest was investigating before being killed, no one is safe and no one is spared being the killer's next target. I'm a fan of Davidson's series about Goldy Schulz and while I mostly enjoyed this newest book, parts of it dragged on too much for me and I found myself skipping over whole paragraphs and even pages. For some reason everyone seemed to be more into "in your face" lengthy interrogations than what I remember in past titles. There were several side stories going on with various characters in this book and while some of them didn't seem to be important to the story I felt Davidson did a decent job connecting them while not letting their stories distract from the main conflict. The biggest surprise for me though was the one in Goldy's personal life revealed toward the end. You'll have to read it yourself to find out what that is.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Lots of filler in it. Not up to her early books.
Famfatale More than 1 year ago
I found this one a bit hard to "swallow" despite the tasty recipes.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read and enjoyed all of the Goldy books-with the exception of this one. "Crunch Time" has been a major dissapointment and I am having to force myself to finish it. Yolanda and her aunt are both obnoxious characters. I cannot understand why Goldy is so hell-bent on coming to their rescue. What has happened to Goldy? She is running all over town like the proverbial chicken with its head cut off and allowing this pair to move into her house and take over, bullying her into making rum sauce at 5 a.m. in her own kitchen. Not the Goldy we all know and used to love. I wish the author would allow Julian to return from exile in Boulder and be the subject of a book. He hardly appears anymore and I would like to see more of him. Also, way too much interference by Goldy in Tom's investigations/interrogations. Would a detective really be allowed to question suspects in his kitchen with frequent interruptions by his busybody wife who is cooking in the background and evesdropping the entire time? Highly doubtful. And finally...600 pages? Seriously?! She could have trimmed one third of this and I doubt we would have missed a thing. I hope the author can come up with some better characters for the next installment and that it does not take three years for it to happen.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I generally enjoy the "Goldy" books. Light hearted and fun to read, but this was not one of the better ones. Too much running around town, too many characters to keep track of, and little to no appearance if some of our favorites like Julian. Not a favorite. Maybe the next one will be better.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I usually love reading Diane Davidson's books but Crunch Time is one of her worst books. I was hoping that Goldy was the victim. The book was so boring it took me days just to finish it. I'll make sure I read her next reviews before buying another one of her books.
cerises More than 1 year ago
loved it
kimily More than 1 year ago
Hurry and write another
AMHMN More than 1 year ago
Just finished reading this book- she gets better all the time- very innovative, and very intertaining.
lovesmysteriesRH More than 1 year ago
Well I've read all the other books in the series, so I thought well why stop now. Her last books are not as good as the first ones. This one is ok, but the main problem I have with it,is how involved Goldie gets in her husbands cases. She sits in when he interogates a suspect and constantly interrupts, like she knows more then her husband. To me it's annoying. Goldie should stick to cooking and snooping.
librarysusie More than 1 year ago
This is #16 in the Goldy Schultz series and as usual Goldy puts herself in the middle of a murder investigation. I liked the new characters Yolanda & her aunt Ferndinanda especially the aunt, she made me laugh. This one had a lot going on puppy mills, marijuana, cheating husbands and a hooker who used to tutor Arch! Poor Tom still thinks just maybe this will be the time when Goldy actually tells him what she's doing and just maybe she will listen to him when he tells her to stay out of it, Oh Tom will you never learn! I enjoyed this one better than Fatally Flaky, these books are just good escapism and a laugh or two. The author always keeps you guessing who did it.
SharonRedfern More than 1 year ago
Goldy Schulz, owner of Goldilocks Catering in Aspen Meadow CO, has her work cut out for her in the latest culinary mystery by Diane Mott Davidson. Goldy's assistant Yolanda has broken off her relationship with wealthy Kris Nielsen, followed by her apartment being burned to the ground. She moved in with local PI Ernest McLeod, but he has been murdered. Goldy, Yolanda, and her Cuban refugee aunt Ferdinanda, are at McLeod's house when a mysterious bald man lobs molotov cocktails into the house and boom! another house gone. Tom, Goldy's husband, is an investigator for the Sheriff's department and has suspicions about Yolanda's involvement. Goldy convinces him to let the two women stay with them for a short period of time. Of course, Goldy can't keep her nose out of the murder and the mayhem commences. Add in nine adorable Beagle puppies, mysterious house breaking adulterers, and missing gold and diamonds from a Cuban refugee family, and the plot becomes quite complicated. Tom continues to be a big lovable guy who worries about his inquisitive wife. Son Arch is now in high school and has become a fencing aficionado. Goldy's best friend,Marla ( the second wife of Goldy's deceased first husband, commonly known as "the jerk") has a significant role in this book. Ferdinanda is an interesting character with lots of spunk even though she is wheelchair bound after a hit and run accident. I loved her snarky comments throughout the book. There are several secondary characters who add the red herrings but it all comes together in the end. As always, Ms. Davidson has done a great job of combining all the elements much like the yummy recipes at the end of the book. Fans of the series will enjoy this book. My only negative- we didn't see enough of Julian, Goldy's former apprentice.
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jaysueread More than 1 year ago
This is a great series
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm so sorry...*she sniffles*
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Too many subplots, too much of Goldy breaking the law, too maudlin at times. Too much for good character development and good basic story line to overcome.