On What Grounds (Coffeehouse Mystery Series #1)

On What Grounds (Coffeehouse Mystery Series #1)

3.8 108
by Cleo Coyle

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Introducing a delightful new series featuring Clare Cosi, manager of the historic Village Blend, where coffee and crime are always brewing...


Introducing a delightful new series featuring Clare Cosi, manager of the historic Village Blend, where coffee and crime are always brewing...

Editorial Reviews

The Barnes & Noble Review
After an extended stint in suburbia raising her now-grown daughter, Clare Cosi is ready for a change, but she expects complications when she agrees to take over as manager of the historic Village Blend coffeehouse. After all, her ex-husband is the importer responsible for buying coffee for the shop, and she's been hired to undo the damage caused by a manager who has practically ruined a reputation more than a century old. There aren't many problems Clare doesn't think can be cured by the perfect cup of coffee -- but that theory is about to be tested. When she and her cat, Java, arrive, the shop is locked, the baked goods cases are empty, there's no coffee ready...and the assistant manager who was supposed to be opening the shop and handling the morning rush is sprawled at the bottom of the basement stairs, critically injured. The police want to write it all off as a tragic mishap, but Clare has grounds to believe the trouble brewing at Village Blend is no accident. Coffee lovers will delight in Clare's tips on roasting, grinding, storing, and preparing the perfect cup of coffee (and using the grounds to tell the future). And her luscious recipes and captivating anecdotes about the important role of coffee in the history of civilization are a perfect accent to the rich blend of characters and plot that make On What Grounds such a satisfying mystery. This new series is off to a piping-hot start, and we can't wait to see what new cases the author has percolating! Sue Stone

Product Details

Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
Coffeehouse Mystery Series , #1
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
6.82(w) x 4.22(h) x 0.78(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

CLEO COYLE is a pseudonym for Alice Alfonsi, writing in collaboration with her husband, Marc Cerasini. Both are New York Times bestselling authors of The Coffeehouse Mysteries, now celebrating over ten years in print. Alice and Marc are also bestselling media tie-in writers who have penned properties for Lucasfilm, NBC, Fox, Disney, Imagine, and MGM. They live and work in New York City, where they write independently and together, including the nationally bestselling Haunted Bookshop Mysteries.

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On What Grounds (Coffeehouse Mystery Series #1) 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 108 reviews.
6tessa9 More than 1 year ago
I enjoy reading mystery novels, and I'm always surprised by the inventive settings and plots for murder and mayhem. Recently, while I was waiting for the latest book in my current mystery series, I decided to try something new. I was browsing the mystery shelves, before sitting in the B&N cafe to have my morning hot chocolate and scone, when the cover with "Coffeehouse Mystery Series" caught my eye. I was intrigued, since, here I was at a coffeehouse, looking for a mystery series... Could it be fate? Apparently so! I picked up 'On What Grounds' to read in the cafe, and I was instantly hooked by the novel setting, the interesting cast, and the colorful writing style. I especially liked that it was written in 1st-person, so I felt truly connected with the main character. Of course, the descriptions of coffee-related beverages and food made my mouth water - and I don't even drink coffee! The recipes and tips, related to all things coffee, at the back of the book are a unique touch that makes this series useful as well as entertaining. I have already purchased the second and third book, and can't wait to continue reading!
nookbookworm More than 1 year ago
The plot didn't move much. There were some "teases" but it didn't go anywhere with them. There were some interesting twists. Good information for those who love coffee. The average coffee drinker would say, "Neat information" and then hope to get on with the plot soon.
bookbearPJ More than 1 year ago
If you are a fan of mysteries and coffeehouse coffee blends, this is a fun book to read. Clare Cosi is the manager of the Village Blend. A 100 year old coffeehouse in Greenwich Village, NY. Clare is running the Village Blend for her ex-mother-in-law and lives above the coffeehouse. The problem is Clare has to share this living arrangement with her ex-husband,Matt, who is the coffee buyer for the Village Blends specialty roasts and a womanizer. Joy,their daughter is in culinary school. What happens at the Village Blend next....you have to read for yourself. Follow Clare's curiosity at the events that surround her and the Village Blend.
scovel More than 1 year ago
This is a murder mystery that takes place in a coffee house in New York. Clare is the old/new manager of the coffee shop when she finds one of her employees dead. She is determined to find out what happened to her. I found the plot slow and the story dull. It was missing everything I like in a mystery and the coffee recipes were - well just okay. I wouldn't go out of my way to read any more in this series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Cleo Coyle's Coffeehouse Mysteries are as close as you can get to coffee without actually drinking it. I bought this first in the series because I had check out a couple of others in the series from the library. Clare Cosi is a single mom who used to manage the Village Blend Coffeehouse in NYC for her mother-in-law, lovingly referred to as "Madame". But when she and her cocaine-indulging husband are divorced, she leaves NY and raises their daughter on her own. Now, her daughter is grown and Madame asks Clare to come back and take over managing the Village Blend again. Only, very shortly after taking over the coffeehouse, she finds a body in the basement, and an historic plaque has gone missing. Thus begins Clare's new career as an amateur sleuth. Along the way, she deals with the globe-trotting ex-husband, a very handsome, though somewhat hard-boiled detective, and the college hijinks of her daughter. All the while, serving up gourmet espresso to customers and coffee facts to anyone who will listen. I learned more about coffee in one book than I ever imagined. And while reading it on a rainy autumn evening, I could practically smell the fresh coffee. I think I'll have another cup.
Faeschild More than 1 year ago
I really hoped for the best with this series. I like the other series (Haunted Bookshop) and wish she would go back to it. This series had potential but it drifted too far into the dissertation on the correct procedures to roast, grind and brew coffee. The mysteries are lost. I read the first one and thought...ok, not bad...a little to heavy with the description of the perfect espresso...maybe the next book will be better. Unfortunately, I was wrong, again too much time on coffee and not enough time on the actual mystery. I actually read the first two books and part of the third. I did the classic skip to the end to find out whodunnit and went...huh??? I had to go back and find out who the murderer and the supposed murderer were...they are not introduced until way into the last third of the book because again she spent far too long describing the perfect espresso.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I won't be reading the next book. It took 178 pages to actually get started with the story! I'm a tea drinker anyway :)
mysterychickCT More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this mystery, a great introduction to the characters and their lives in this book. It is a must read for someone who enjoys a light mystery and coffee! The story itself is well written with the reader believing that they are right there on the scene.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a nice introduction to the series. I was hooked right away and loved the incorporation of the different coffee recipies.
TheBookResort More than 1 year ago
Grab your chocolate. Latte. Cocoa. Chi. Chocolate liqueur. Kahlua® coffee liqueur Swing batter batter swing... We have a winner!!! I am not a coffee connoisseur, but the aroma of a heady brew gets my blood boiling. I love the potent bouquet that attacks my senses whenever I step foot inside a coffeehouse. *Sigh* I love to soak up the atmosphere ~ I sip on delicious hot tea, Poland water &/or grab a bite to eat ~ soup, panini... scones. Oh, those yummy desserts. I relax, read, listen to music, poetry or tune into people engaging in conversations ~ ok, eavesdrop... =Q I just like to settle in & marinate in the creative & energizing ambiance. Clare Cosi is an absolute delight. She is not one of those amateur sleuths you wonder, "where'd she go to school ~ KoKo Puffs U". She is a charming, intelligent & witty protagonist. Clare does not rely on anyone to be her superhero. Her cape is right next to the Sumatra in the storeroom. All of the the impressive characters leap from the page. Oh, Matteo... Joy, Madame, Matteo... *oops, back on track* Tucker, Detective Mike Quinn are absolutely compelling, expressive & irresistible. I love how the coffee info is scattered throughout the book. Some complain this is annoying, but I don't find it irritating or distracting in the least. On What Ground's is the 1st coffeehouse mystery & is a delightful, picturesque, sparkling, lighthearted cozy. Now, I'm in the mood to visit a coffee bar & order an iced raspberry, bottle of Poland & a lemon raspberry bar. Come to mama, baby.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It took forever to get to the end
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JoMacall More than 1 year ago
I took a chance and purchased the first two books of the Coffeehouse Mystery series, even though I was not familiar with the author, and I am glad I did. Taking on the running of a celebrated coffee bar owned by her ex-mother-in-law and finding out her ex-husband is part of the package was the first shock. Then finding one of her employees at the bottom of the basement stairs barely alive, complicated matters. Add in some shady characters and a handsome police detective, well, need I say more? Interspersed throughout this riveting story are tips for making the perfect cup of coffee and, at the back of the book, recipes you will want to try. Like the one for a Black Russian. This is a case where you should try it at home...and with a chair nearby! Can't wait to start series #2.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I wanted to like this book, but it just never really engaged me. I love mysteries and cozy coffee shops, so I gave this book a shot (so to speak). From the description of the characters, I presumed they'd be interesting, but, somehow, they never seemed to develop any depth. They felt shallow, self-involved, and uninteresting. I stuck it out through 16 chapters, but then had to concede defeat. I flipped to the last chapter, saw "who dunit", and gratefully tossed it aside.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
omalane More than 1 year ago
Its a good read. I will look for the next one in the series and more by this author.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Although this book is rather poorly written and painfully predictable, I enjoyed it very much. It's cute and fun to read. I will read more in the series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Going to try the 2nd book to see if the goodness continues.