A Cup of Holiday Fear (Bakeshop Mystery Series #10)

A Cup of Holiday Fear (Bakeshop Mystery Series #10)

by Ellie Alexander

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Overview

It’s Christmastime and everyone is heading to Torte, the most cheerful bakery in town. There’s no place like home for the homicide…

Ashland, Oregon, looks as pretty as a postcard this holiday season. The halls are decked, stockings hung, and eyes are all aglow—mostly thanks to the buttered rum. Jules Capshaw and her staff at Torte are busier than ever. . . still, even the town’s most in-demand bakers need to take a break. So Jules invites everyone to celebrate at the local Winchester Inn’s Dickens Feast, a six-course extravaganza with Yorkshire Pudding, Christmas goose, and all the trimmings. But as the weather outside becomes frightful, things inside turn less delightful when one of the guests ends up as dead as Scrooge’s doornail. Now it’s up to Jules and her helpers to make a list of suspects—and check it twice—to try to find out who’s naughty, who’s nice, and who’s guilty of murder…

The Bakeshop mysteries are:

“Delicious.” —RT Book Reviews

“Marvelous.” —Fresh Fiction

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250214348
Publisher: St. Martin''s Publishing Group
Publication date: 09/24/2019
Series: Bakeshop Mystery Series , #10
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 17,969
Product dimensions: 4.10(w) x 6.70(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

ELLIE ALEXANDER is a Pacific Northwest native who spends ample time testing pastry recipes in her home kitchen or at one of the many famed coffeehouses nearby. When she's not coated in flour, you'll find her outside exploring hiking trails and trying to burn off calories consumed in the name of "research." She is the author of the Bakeshop Mysteries, including Meet Your Baker and A Batter of Life and Death, as well as the Sloan Krause mysteries. Find her on Facebook to learn more!

Customer Reviews

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A Cup of Holiday Fear 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 26 reviews.
ReadYourWrites 5 months ago
4.5 stars I can't believe it’s taken ten books for Ellie Alexander to write a Christmas story for her Bakeshop Mystery series. I mean what's a better backdrop than the Torte Bakery in Ashland, Oregon? A Cup of Holiday Fear finds Jules Capshaw and her Torte staff churning out holiday drinks, pastries, and desserts. In the midst of all the working, Jules, her staff, along with her mother Helen, stepfather Doug, and best friend Lance take a night off to celebrate Christmas, all Torte has accomplished during the year, and each other. The group attends the Dickens Feast held at the Winchester Inn. This event is a holiday tradition put on every day during the month of December. Jon and Emma Winchester have been putting on the event for going on thirty years now. The Winchesters are ready to retire but their only child, Nate doesn't want to take over the inn. The Winchesters make the tough decision to sell the inn to a lady named Cami from L.A. Rumors start to spread that Cami doesn't plan on keeping the inn open and that everyone there will lose their jobs. This will definitely be a night and an event to remember. Off the bat, Jules and her guests can tell that Cami isn't a very nice person. Cami doesn't want to abide by the rules of the event and she doesn't want the items being served. Cami goes as far as yelling at one staff member and gets into an altercation with another. Not only is Cami making the event a little uncomfortable for everyone, but the Dickens Feast which usually runs like a well-oiled machine is running like a bunch of newbies are handling things. “Literally everything that could go wrong has.” Someone sabotages the electrical system, throwing the entire inn into darkness. When the lights finally come back on, Jules finds the body of Cami. Without question, Cami was murdered. But who did so and why can potentially send shockwaves through Ashland. I love reading Ellie’s Bakeshop Mystery series. Every book is like meeting up with old friends. Every single character is someone I would love to know except for Richard Lord, the owner of the Merry Windsor Hotel. But let’s not talk about him. I really enjoyed A Cup of Holiday Fear but I think I enjoyed the story too much. I was so wrapped up in reading that I missed the fact that the case was solved. I had to go back and re-read some pages. Throughout this series, Jules has had to deal with her husband Carlos keeping a huge secret from her. The two now live apart with her living in Ashland and him living on a cruise ship as a chef. As far as their relationship goes, Ellie continues to play with my romance girl emotions. I feel as though Jules is partially in limbo and doesn't know what to do. I can't believe the story ended the way it did! I want more. I also can't believe a cozy mystery made me cry. I am so excited there's another book in this series. Fingers crossed that Jules's love life gets sorted out. **Personal Purchase**
bookwomen37 7 months ago
This book was a 3.5 star read. I enjoyed reading it. It is filled with lots of baking and Christmas cheer. But the mystery was really weak. I figured out the killer very early and I am still not sure why the murder was committed other than bad attitudes. I did like the all the Christmas trimmings and the recipes. I just wished that as much time was spent on the mystery as the baking. Even though this book is part of the series it does not have to read in order. Read this for the Holiday not for the mystery.
SewWrite 8 months ago
It's Christmas time in Ashland, Oregon. Jules and her staff at Torte are baking up a storm to fill orders and make sure their regular customers have plenty of baked goods for the holidays. To celebrate, Jules has the staff party at the popular local Winchester Inn's Dicken's Feast. The meal is amazing and the entertainment superb until the demanding woman that's buying the Inn causes a scene and is later found dead on a night full of issues at the Inn. There are many suspects on the list and Jules helps to solve the murder so everyone can get back to having a happy holiday. This is a great series and I really enjoyed this book. I felt like I was visiting Ashland and hanging out with all of the characters that live there. I felt the holiday spirit throughout the book but was also able to enjoy the mystery without feeling like it was pushed in the background.
Anonymous 8 months ago
Juliet takes the staff from her bakery out to celebrate at a local inn’s Dickens Feast, a multi-course meal with characters like Scrooge, Santa and Mrs. Claus welcoming guests while diners are serenaded by a Victorian quartet. The power goes out during the feast and when it comes back on they find a dead body. This is a cozy mystery that I would recommend to fans of Hallmark movies and baking cozies. The focus in this book is heavily on holiday preparations and baking. A Cup of Holiday Fear can be read as a standalone but would be easiest to follow and most enjoyable if you read the series in order. There is not much backstory provided to catch readers up on character connections from prior books. Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for the ARC. The opinions in this review are honest and my own. #ACupOfHolidayFear #cozymystery
SparklingReviewer 11 months ago
Juliet Montague Capshaw owns a bakery in Ashland, Oregon. She recently moved back there after ten years because she wanted to find her roots. Like many small business owners and small towns, she knows almost everyone. It’s Christmas and everyone is celebrating with parades, feasts, and more. But there’s something dark underneath all the joy in town—something that leads to murder. This is a standard cozy mystery with an amateur sleuth and lots of suspects, but that’s where the stereotyping ends. Unlike most cozies, the sleuth is never in mortal danger (which is not necessarily a bad thing!). And she doesn’t have an in-town boyfriend. Instead, she has a husband (who’s off at sea for the entire story) and a stepson (who also doesn’t show up until the end). Different, but interesting. The killer is kind of easy to spot, but nothing is really given away until the end—and again, nobody is in mortal danger. Yes, Juliet goes into the dark basement for things, but…really, no angst there. Things I liked: the imagery! The writer has a deft hand with describing the scenery and the surroundings. I almost wanted to get a cup of hot peppermint cocoa to drink while reading—during ninety-degree weather where I am! I also liked the characters—they were well described and believable, as was the reason for the murder. Plus, no angst about the main characters being in danger. Kind of a nice change from the norm. And her name! Ashland, OR is famous for its Shakespearean Festival and theater and to name the main character after Juliet…had to smile at that. Things I didn’t like: I was just a little lost with the whole absent husband thing and exactly who the Professor (Doug) is—I gather he’s a police detective? But I’m not certain. This is not the first in the series, so I assume these things were explained in earlier books. Also, going back to the norm with most cozies, there was never any danger for any of the characters (except the victim—and it was obvious from the beginning who it was going to be). Recommendation: I really would recommend this series, but I’d recommend you start with book one (Meet your Baker) so you understand the connections between characters and who they are. I know I’ll definitely be looking to get the series. Not necessarily because of the mystery, but the imagery alone drew me in. I want to be there—and can, through the books.
Karen-Hollins 11 months ago
"A Cup of Holiday Fear " the 10th installment in the "Bakeshop Mystery" series by Ellie Alexander, was a fantastic holiday story! It's Christmastime and everyone is heading to Torte, the most cheerful bakery in town. There's no place like home for the homicide... Ashland, Oregon, looks as pretty as a postcard this holiday season. The halls are decked, stockings hung, and eyes are all aglow--mostly thanks to the buttered rum. Jules Capshaw and her staff at Torte are busier than ever. . . still, even the town's most in-demand bakers need to take a break. So Jules invites everyone to celebrate at the local Winchester Inn's Dickens Feast, a six-course extravaganza with Yorkshire Pudding, Christmas goose, and all the trimmings. But as the weather outside becomes frightful, things inside turn less delightful when one of the guests ends up as dead as Scrooge's doornail. Now it's up to Jules and her helpers to make a list of suspects--and check it twice--to try to find out who's naughty, who's nice, and who's guilty of murder... I thought I hadn’t read any of the previous books but the setting, names etc. were familiar so I may have read one awhile ago. I did not have any trouble following along so, yes it can be read as a standalone. I do recommend reading them in order, this way you really get to know the characters. I had no trouble envisioning Ashland all decked out with holiday lights, snow falling, and carollers singing. Jules and the rest of the characters were well developed, I liked how the story was character driven with a mystery, I like these kind of series as you become invested in the characters and what’s happening around them. I enjoyed the holiday atmosphere that the author created and how Jules and her mum included everyone who had no Christmas plans in theirs. I did suspect the killer pretty quick, but there were plenty of suspects to choose from as Cami was a pretty rotten person. There were some twists and turns just enough to keep you guessing. Don’t get me started on the descriptions of all the desserts, drinks and food , I think I gained 10lbs just thinking about them. I like that recipes are included in back of the book too, yes in some spots the detailed descriptions on Jules making a dessert became a bit much but then I’m not a foodie, but those that are will love it. I highly recommend this book and series to all my cozy friends especially the ones that love to bake! I requested and received an Advanced Readers Copy from St. Martin's Press and NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
4GranJan 11 months ago
Cozy Christmas Season Murder Mystery This book is a cozy mystery set in a winter wonderland of the mountains of southern Oregon. The fictitious town is a complete Christmas dream with Dickinson Dinners, Victorian carollers and a town square is full seasonal silliness. One of the main settings is a bakery with descriptions of goodies that will make you drool. Luckily for the reader, the author has included some of her recipes at the back of the book. The story flows easily with lots of suspects and motives. I have read several of this author's works and she is fast becoming a favorite. I received this ARC book for free from Net Galley and this is my honest review.
Anonymous 12 months ago
This is a nicely done cozy series with a super appealing setting and much greater than usual character development. Juliet Capshaw has returned from a life as a cruise ship chef to settle down in her home town of Ashland, Oregon and run her family's pastry/coffee shop. If you're a fan of the series you know that Juliet's widowed mother has re-married and that Juliet is torn since her husband Carlos is still a chef away at sea. But the circumstances are adequately explained for newcomer readers. The small town of Ashland is important to the series and well described. The community itself, particularly with this book's holiday theme, is enormously attractive. And the details of running the bake shop (not to mention the recipes!) add to the appeal. A local couple with close ties to Juliet's family have decided to sell their hotel and retire. The new owner turns out to be horrible, and the discovery of her body leads to lots of murder suspects. Highly recommended series. Thanks to the publisher and to Net Galley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for my honest review.
Quinni 12 months ago
Thank You St. Martins Press, for the opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ With the holidays right around the corner, getting into the mood with holiday themed reads is a great mood booster as well as a head start on gift ideas for the booklover on your gift list! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ I am introduced to Jules Capshaw as this is my first time reading a book within this series, and I am not disappointed. We are headed to Ashland, Oregon in a cozy little town where the bakery is front and center. That alone gets you into the holiday spirit. The author had a great writing style so her descriptions for a total visual reader such as myself, worked like a charm! There is a cozy Christmas meal and gathering set up only to end with one “dead goose”! If you like cozy reads, then this one is right up your alley as I loved it and didn’t want it to end! And.....the cover is simply to die for, isn’t it? Lovey story, quick read, well written and enjoyable from start to end!
neptune75 12 months ago
Juliet is back in the bakery getting ready for Christmas. The story is enjoyable being told from her point of view. We get to read a lot of baking tips and recipe ideas. However, I felt that the story focused too much on that type of thing and forgot to flesh out the mystery part. There is a murder and a conclusion, but it seemed as if almost secondary to the book. The explanation didn't quite work for me and I felt it was a bit contrived to make it work as an afterthought. I normally like this series, but this one left me wanting something more.
Mary_Russell More than 1 year ago
Ellie Alexander delivers another charming cozy mystery. The staff of at Torte take a break from the hustle and bustle at the bakery for a staff holiday party at the Winchester Inn's Dickens Feast. Naturally, the dinner is as delightful as it sounds until everything goes wrong with a power outage, an apparently drunken Santa, and a murder. I feel that Christmas needs a little murder to make it merry and this book is packed with delicious food, humor, and holiday merriment. A Cup of Holiday Fear is an excellent addition to the Bakeshop Mystery series. As always I can't wait for the next book! if you haven't read Ellie Alexander's Sloan Krause mysteries, those are a must read for cozy mystery lovers as well.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A Cup Of Holiday Fear is a warm, cozy Christmas story...with a dash of murder to spice it up. Jules is busy in her family’s bakery, baking delicious-sounding pastries and breads for the holiday season. It’s her first year back home in several years, and Jules is enjoying the town’s many Christmas events. During a Dickens dinner, things go awry and an unpleasant person is found stabbed. The more Jules hears, the more the circle of suspects grows. She is also missing her husband, who hasn’t come home with her. If you’re looking for a cozy mystery to read while sipping peppermint cocoa, be sure to read this one. As a bonus, some of the recipes are included at the end.
WildFlowerBookBlogs More than 1 year ago
Terror has struck a small town this holiday season, but fear not because your favorite detective baker is on the case in this charming, very satisfying mystery. Get your cookies and coffee ready and settle in for one amazingly delicious ride. 5/5 stars
McKenzie-Allyshia More than 1 year ago
When I think of cozy mysteries, the Bakeshop Mystery series is one of the first to come to mind. There is just enough murder and just enough mystery to keep the reader captivated. Through the years, I have loved following along with Jules and the Torte team. Ellie Alexander has done an amazing job creating a beautiful depiction of the Shakespearean town in Oregon. Admittedly, Ashland is now on my list of places to visit since I am just a few hours north of there. While the quaint little town is a jewel in itself, the characters are where it is at. Each character has continued to grow through the books. The relationships between them are believable and have evolved wonderfully! The story itself was intriguing, but not to complex. It is pretty easy for the reader to pick out "whodunit". However, the story is less about the mystery and more about the characters themselves. With that being said, I did find the story line to go at a great pace and it kept my interest throughout the entire book. I am so happy to be able to continue reading this series. It definitely has made a special place in my heart.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Jules and her Torte staff are busier than ever making delicious pastries for the Christmas season. Deciding every one could use a break, she invites them to a dinner party at the local Winchester inn. Unfortunately, things take a turn for the worse when the new owner of the inn is murdered during a power outage. Jules has a few theories about the murder and with her friend, lance's persuasion, she decided to do her own investigation. This is one of my absolute favorite cozy mystery series! Ellie Alexander has created a wonderful cast of characters. Reading a new installment feels like catching up with old friends. From the mouth-watering food descriptions to the wonderful Christmas setting, it feels like you're right there in Ashland enjoying the holiday season with Jules and her Torte family. The mystery does take a back seat to all the Christmas preparations going on, but it was still well developed, and the culprit was not completely obvious. It didn't take away my enjoyment of the book and I was very pleased with the ending. Ellie Alexander is one of my favorite cozy mystery authors and I highly recommend any of her books. Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
PollyBennett More than 1 year ago
Such a charming series. This addition was especially enjoyable, it is a Christmas murder!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Just ok, need more story & less descriptions of the food, also way overuse of the word “quintessential”, felt like it showed up every other page.
Marshathereader More than 1 year ago
A Cup of Holiday Fear by Ellie Alexander is book ten in the Bakeshop Mystery series. I love this series. Christmas is coming and Jules has reservations for Torte's Christmas party at the annual Dickens Feast at the Winchester Inn. This is a staple event in Ashland every year bringing in tourists and business. When Jules learns the present owners have sold the business, she is sad but has been reassured the new owner will keep things the same. But at the feast, the new owner is seated close by and Jule's learns the Inn will be leveled. The feast starts off fine but then it goes downhill, ending with the new owner dead. Jules sets out to find out who did it before Christmas. There are plot twists keeping you guessing to the end. The cast of characters are great. There is a hint of romance and humor. This is a easy to read cozy. There are recipes included. You will be put into the Christmas mood when you go to Ashland. I was given an ARC by Netgalley and St, Martins Paperbacks and have given an honest review.
Marshathereader More than 1 year ago
A Cup of Holiday Fear by Ellie Alexander is book ten in the Bakeshop Mystery series. I love this series. Christmas is coming and Jules has reservations for Torte's Christmas party at the annual Dickens Feast at the Winchester Inn. This is a staple event in Ashland every year bringing in tourists and business. When Jules learns the present owners have sold the business, she is sad but has been reassured the new owner will keep things the same. But at the feast, the new owner is seated close by and Jule's learns the Inn will be leveled. The feast starts off fine but then it goes downhill, ending with the new owner dead. Jules sets out to find out who did it before Christmas. There are plot twists keeping you guessing to the end. The cast of characters are great. There is a hint of romance and humor. This is a easy to read cozy. There are recipes included. You will be put into the Christmas mood when you go to Ashland. I was given an ARC by Netgalley and St, Martins Paperbacks and have given an honest review.
AWilcox777 More than 1 year ago
This entire series is phenomenal. It's got highs and lows, suspense and laughs; pretty much everything to keep you turning those pages wishing for a little longer lunch break or that you didn't have get up early tomorrow for work because you would finish the book. Ellie knows how to write her characters and grow them at a perfect pace that feels real like you're going through life with them. This book goes right along with everything above and more. The story is amazing, pulling at your heartstrings, making you wish it was Christmastime to deck the halls with everyone at Torte. The murder is twisted and suspenseful, as it should be in a mystery novel, and Ellie keeps you guessing right up until the end. I couldn't ask for more in a longer series. Nothing is boring or repetitive, unless it's tradition that should be, and every time I finish a book in this series, I get a little sad that it's over and excited waiting for the next one to see how everyone is doing. This holiday installment is beyond anything Torte enthusiasts could have wished for.
BobbieLCLA More than 1 year ago
Through NetGalley, I received a free copy of A CUP OF HOLIDAY FEAR (Book 10 of the Bakeshop Mysteries) by Ellie Alexander in exchange for an honest review. Jules Capshaw is set to enjoy brisk business and a picture-perfect Christmas season. After all, Ashland, Oregon goes all-out to make the Yule season winter wonderful. This year, Jules and her mother treat the Torte employees to the Dickensian Feast held at the local Winchester Inn. However, their sweet celebration is somewhat soured by the shenanigans of an out-of-town guest. As the evening progresses, go more awry. The grand finale of wrongness presents itself in the murder of the unruly guest. Lance is delighted to have the opportunity for another adventure and urges Jules to investigate the latest homicide. Can Jules find time to capture a killer when she’s up to her eyeballs in hot chocolate, sugar cookies, and other seasonal sweets? I liked this book and, overall, the series. This book progresses the overall story of the friends and community while also focusing on the current mystery. I look forward to the next tale. I recommend this book to fans of Ellie Alexander, to fans of the series, and to fans of cozy mysteries with small town and food themes.
Abby-F More than 1 year ago
I devoured this holiday-filled mystery as one devours a buttery pastry straight out of the oven. Like the perfect confection, it had the precise ratio of mystery, to personal, to holiday cheer. The holiday theme was executed extremely well. Since it is the holiday times, the bakeshop is buzzing, the characters are squeezing in their shopping, and trees are getting chopped. Even if you don't celebrate Christmas or any holiday during December, you will thoroughly enjoy the book. Whether you read this story in the winter or the summer or any season in between, the moment you open the pages you will be enveloped by the cold winter air and the smell of baking holiday treats will immediately hang in the air. One of my all time favorite things about this series is Jules's friendship with her best friend Lance. While they both appear to be completely different, they are actually quite alike. Their escapades are anything but dull and they go together like a cupcake and frosting. The bakeshop is one of the perfect settings for a holiday themed cozy. No matter how you celebrate the holidays, almost everyone has some sort of baked confection they enjoy during the season. The new staff members that were introduced in the previous book have become fully acclimated to their new positions and are thriving. It feels as if they have always been there. The love the characters feel for each other and the relationships showcased throughout are what really drive the story home. You have a group of people that truly care for one another and don't have everything quite figured out yet. This realism is what drives the story home. The world contained in this book feels real which makes the reading experience all the more pleasurable. The mystery was wonderfully incorporated . It was front and center, yet it didn't detract from the rest of the story. The fact that I actually felt my eyes widen with surprise at one point speaks for itself! I received an ARC of this book. I am voluntarily leaving a review. All of the thoughts and opinions expressed here are my own.
CozyOnUp More than 1 year ago
Jules Capshaw is the head baker and co-owner of her family’s bakery, Torte in Ashland, Oregon. With Christmas coming, Jules and her Torte family are busy baking and making the season bright. To celebrate as a family, Jules makes reservations for the Torte team to celebrate at Winchester Inn’s Dickens Feast, a long standing Ashland Christmas tradition. During the Feast, the new owner of the Inn manages to annoy every staff member, whom she quickly fires, even though no one knows the Inn has been sold. But when the new owner is murdered during a power outage, the festivities take a Bah Humbug turn. Having found the Inn owner drugged in the basement before finding the dead woman, Jules has time to come up with some theories of her own before the police arrive. Can the police solve the murder before Jules gets too close to the truth and becomes the next victim to be wearing a knife with a splash of red for Christmas? This is a fantastic series, as are all things Ellie Alexander writes. Ellie has a way of bringing the characters, emotions, weather and aromas to life on the pages of her books. This is a series you can binge on with 10 books already in the series. If you haven’t read anything by Ellie Alexander yet, what are you waiting for? You’ll thank me later!
MKF More than 1 year ago
Cami, the new owner of the Winchester Inn, might be a real pain in the neck but murder? Jules, our intrepid heroine, is the owner of Torte, a delightful bakery in Ashland, Oregon. It's Christmas and there's lots of activities going on so when Cami is killed, Jules must balance her work and her life with her need to find the villain. Her BFF Lance was not in a festive mood but give him a chance to solve crime.....I'd only read one of the previous installments in this long running series but it worked just fine for me as a semi-standalone. Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC. A great Christmas themed cozy.
jjthor More than 1 year ago
A fun cozy mystery! This is the 10th book in this series following Juiet and her family as their lives continue to change and grow. It is set in Ashland Oregon where Juliet runs a bakery. It is christmas time and the staff need a break from the chaos so she takes them all to a speical place for a well deserved thank you for the work they all do for her. Then things start to heat up with a dead body who dunits and who didn't! As they scramble to solve the mystery so they can get back to their lives and the bakery! fast paced and the characters are great most of the same ones from other books but some new as well fun to see where they all are now and how things have developed for them all. can be read as a standalone but would be better reading the whole series to get the most out of the characters. Great reading.