Death al Fresco: A Sally Solari Mystery

Death al Fresco: A Sally Solari Mystery

by Leslie Karst

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Overview

Death al Fresco: A Sally Solari Mystery by Leslie Karst

It’s up to Sally Solari to serve up a killer before their family restaurant’s reputation goes up in smoke.

It’s early autumn in Santa Cruz and restaurateur Sally Solari decides an open-air painting class is the perfect way for her to learn more about Paul Gauguin, the inspiration for the restaurant she has recently inherited. But the beauty of the Monterey Bay coastline is shattered when Sally’s dog Buster sniffs out a corpse tangled up in kelp.

The body is identified as Gino, a local fisherman and a regular at Solaris’ until he disappeared after dining there a few nights before. Witnesses claim he left reeling drunk, but his waitress swears the old man only had two beers with is meal. And then the fingers begin to point at Sally’s dad for negligently allowing an inebriated customer to walk home alone at night.

From a long menu of suspects, including a cast of colorful characters who frequent the historic Santa Cruz fisherman’s wharf, Sally must serve up the tall order of clearing her father’s name in Death al Fresco , Leslie Karst’s third delectable Sally Solari mystery.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781683315322
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Publication date: 03/13/2018
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 501,724
Product dimensions: 5.60(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Leslie Karst has degrees in English literature, law, and culinary arts. After graduating from Stanford Law School, she worked for twenty years as a research and appellate attorney before retiring. Karst now splits her time between Santa Cruz, CA, and Hilo, HI, passing the days cooking, gardening, cycling, singing alto in the local community chorus, and of course writing.

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Death al Fresco: A Sally Solari Mystery 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 14 reviews.
Paula Jacobson More than 1 year ago
Paula Jacobson Death al Fresco by Leslie Karst is the third book in the Sally Solari mystery series. Sally and Eric, her friend and the local D.A., are taking an open air painting class. Buster, Sally's dog, finds the body of a local fisherman on the beach. Sally must find the killer to save the family restaurant and her father's good name. This is the first book of the series that I have read. I really liked the fact that I didn't feel lost. I could follow the plot line and felt comfortable with the characters. I liked Sally. She was personable and strong. I also liked that she gave up being an attorney to become a restaurateur. She did her own thing and was happy. I liked the setting of the story in Santa Cruz. I felt like I was on the wharf watching the people. I could smell the wonderful aromas coming from the restaurants. The mystery has a page turning plot line that kept me guessing until the end. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes a page turning mystery with great characters and a wonderful story. It also includes recipes. I received a copy of this book from the author for review. This is an honest review.
CozyMarie More than 1 year ago
As satisfying as a big plate of the pasta served at Solari’s Restaurant, Death al Fresco is sure to leave you with a smile on your face. I enjoyed this book. I thought the characters in this book were strong and relatable. I love multi-generational families and watching how the dynamics play out within them. This book also did a nice job of endearing you to the characters so you are hooked and want to be sure to come back for future installments.
grandmareads102 More than 1 year ago
Sally Solari is back and she's involved in another mystery. Buster discoveres the body of Gino, a local fisherman. Was his death an accident or murder? When her father becomes a suspect, she's determined to find the truth. Sally is a fascinating character. She's a good daughter and a caring friend. The fact that she's a former lawyer sharpened her powers of observation. I liked her wide variety of interests especially her painting classes with Eric. They have a deep and trusting friendship. I think he's a special man. It was sweet how he took care of Buster when Sally couldn't be there. I secretly hope they can rekindle their romance. Their banter is both sweet and sassy The two restaurants in the story add an interesting backdrop for the mystery. I was fascinated by the peak at their kitchens. I also loved Santa Cruz. The beaches and the scenery are breathtaking. Leslie Karst has an engaging writing style that pulled me right in. The recipes she included are an added bonus. I received a copy of this book which I voluntarily read and reviewed. My comments are my honest opinion.
K_Kendler More than 1 year ago
I have been looking forward to this book. I have read a lot about the author’s books but this is the first that I have read. It is the third in the Sally Solari Mystery series. This story can be read as a stand alone. Sally is a restaurateur. She has inherited Gaugin from an aunt, helps her dad with Solari, his restaurant, on an emergency basis, and tries to investigate questionable deaths. Her dog,Buster, finds a pile of seaweed with a body in it at an open air painting class. Sally recognizes the body as a regular customer to Solari. Her friend and former boyfriend, Eric try to resolve the case to insure her father is not arrested for this crime. The story was tight, well written and entertaining. I liked all the revelations as I progressed through the plot. I'm rooting for Eric and Sally.Recipes were included at the end of the book. I am so happy that the publisher has given me the opportunity to read this book. I received a copy in exchange for an Honest review. These are my own opinions.
Miccox99 More than 1 year ago
An excellent addition to the Sally Solari Cozy Mystery series. Once again we see interesting characters that have been well developed including a grouping of characters that could be the villain in the mystery. The plot is interesting, funny and very entertaining. Combine interesting characters and intriguing plot and you have an entertaining read to while away an afternoon with! Be prepared though, you will be craving Italian food by the time you finish the book! Fortunately the author includes a few recipes to feed that craving at the end of the book, a true cozy mystery!
NeenReads More than 1 year ago
This is the first book I have read in the Sally Solari Mystery series. It worked as a good standalone novel and it's great for those who just want to jump right in to the series. I didn't feel lost at all and was able to get a good handle on the characters. Since this novel was based around a restaurant, Karst's culinary knowledge shines through which I thoroughly enjoyed. The descriptions of the food and cooking style was great, speaking to my inner foodie self. I also loved the descriptions of the wharf and the ocean. I love being near the water and I really felt like I was there. Sally Solari was a likable character. I became familiar with the different facets of her life: career, relationships, hobbies...oh, and let's not forget detective! I really had no idea how the book would end and I was pleasantly surprised. Sally was so thorough in her investigation, that I was able to come up several theories and felt like I was investigating right along with her! For a fun read, I highly recommend this book. And if you are working on your beach to be read list, I would say add it! You won't be disappointed. I received a complimentary copy of this book and voluntarily posted an honest review.
Geri-Thueme More than 1 year ago
The story begins with Sally Solari painting on the beach with her friend/ex-boyfriend, Eric, while her dog Buster investigates a pile of seaweed and finds the dead body of an old fisherman. Sally had worked in her father's restaurant until she inherited her aunt's restaurant, Gauguin. I found the story very hard to engage with and I really wanted to put the book down several times but I have one rule and that is to read a book until the end once I start reading it. Perhaps it was that I haven't read the previous books in the series that left me feeling out of the loop but perhaps it was all of the Italian words and sayings that I didn't know the meaning of and that weren't defined, ie. 'glace de viande' and 'garde manger', 'mise en place', etc. I felt like I needed a dictionary nearby. I found it slow and cumbersome. Sally gets pulled back to her father's restaurant to help out with the sister cities dinner that he is hosting and this leaves her head chef at Gauguin on his own to run the place for a few days. Even though she has to leave her own restaurant in the hands of another she seems to have plenty of time to paint on the beach, throw a dinner party for her friends and solve a murder. In the end, Sally does indeed solve the murder but not before she almost drowns as the result of the killer trying to do away with her as well. I volunteered to receive a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. The opinions here are my own.
Marla-Bradeen More than 1 year ago
DEATH AL FRESCO is an enjoyable book. The heroine is easy to like, the characters are diverse and unique, and the mystery kept me guessing. I also found the Santa Cruz setting to be quite appealing, and for those who like the food angle there were some enticing recipes included at the end. Disclosure: I won a free copy of this book in a giveaway.
Missisue4 More than 1 year ago
When I read a book there are lots of times that I find one word best describes the book. And I have to say when reading Death al Fresco by Leslie Karst the word that pops in my mind throughout the entire book is HUNGRY. In Death at Fresco, the third book in the Sally Solari Mystery series by Karst, you are hanging out with Sally who is going back and forth from her father's restaurant, Solari's to Gauguin's, the restaurant that Sally inherited from her aunt. As she just recently inherited Gauguin's she is trying to learn thr ropes of owning and running her own business but she is also getting pulled back to her father's restaurant to help him prepare for a huge dinner honoring the Mayor of their sister city. As if that isn't enough a local fisherman, Gino, that frequented the Solari's is found washed up on the beach by Sally's dog. When Sally learns his approximate time of death happens to be right after he was in the restaurant appearing very intoxicating and he was kicked out by her father, Sally cannot help but try to figure out what happened and why he ended up dead. While you read Death al Fresco you will notice that it is slightly different than most cozies in the way that Sally approaches the case. Usually the main character is butting heads with the police and getting themselves in hot water. However, with Death al Fresco as Sally goes about working at both restaurants, she witnesses things and just seems to talk to some of the locals.....without giving much away. Even though the underlying fact is that she is trying to find out who would hit Gino over the head and throw him into the ocean and why. He was just an old local fisherman....... Also she wants to prove that her father had nothing to do with his death even if there are some facts that say otherwise...... Make sure you have a yummy snack, maybe an antipasto or a nice dish of black cod with miso and sake, or a slice of panettone or something to keep your appetite in check because once you start reading it will be hard to put the book down.....
kimdavishb More than 1 year ago
DEATH AL FRESCO, the third book in the Sally Solari Mystery series by Leslie Karst, is a delightful addition to Sally’s story. I enjoy that each book (all can be read as a stand-alone) focuses on a sense: the first book is taste, the second is sound, and this third book is sight. Ms. Karst weaves in plein air painting* into Sally and her dog discovering the body of an elderly Italian fisherman which had washed up on the beach. When she realizes the man frequented her father’s Italian restaurant, Sally feels a personal connection to the death. I found the bits and pieces that are provided about the Italians settling in the Santa Cruz area in the early 1900’s very interesting and it piqued my curiosity. The descriptions of the sea side setting made me feel like I was on vacation at this popular tourist destination. Sally Solari is a likeable character. She is one busy woman though, running her own restaurant, Gauguin, and helping her father as his restaurant prepares for a huge banquet to welcome an Italian mayor who is coming for a visit. There is also a hint of romance to come and I, for one, am hoping things work out between Sally and her ex in future books. I’ve always enjoyed the way they work together in the previous books and this one is no exception. With so much responsibility demanding her attention, Sally doesn’t have much extra time on her hands. But when people start blaming her father for the death of the fisherman and she finds incriminating evidence, she knows she needs to start asking questions to clear his name. The action starts off early in the story with a good build-up to a satisfying conclusion. There are plenty of suspects to keep the reader guessing and I found the reason for the murder quite unique. It wasn’t at all what I had anticipated which added a nice twist to the mystery. With Sally working at two restaurants in this book, there are so many delicious dishes mentioned! It made me want to visit Santa Cruz and track down both Solari’s and Gauguin… if they really existed. Fortunately, Ms. Karst has included a few recipes at the back of the book. All sound exceptional and since the author graduated from culinary school, you can count on them being delicious. I was provided an advance copy with the hopes I would review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Carstairs38 More than 1 year ago
Sally and her friend Eric are taking an outdoor painting class around Santa Cruz. During class one Saturday, Sally’s dog finds a dead body in the kelp. The man was a regular at Sally’s family’s restaurant, and his last few days seem to be connected to his time there. Can Sally figure out what happened before the restaurant’s reputation is ruined? This book has a good mystery with viable suspects and a couple of good twists to it. It also has some strong sub-plot, which are a double-edged sword. On the one hand, they take the focus off the mystery a bit too much at times. On the other hand, they are the perfect showcases for some of the recurring characters, and I enjoyed seeing them again and how they are growing. Overall, I found this a satisfying read. NOTE: I received an ARC of this book.
Shelly9677 More than 1 year ago
Death al Fresco was a relaxing read. It is the third installment in the Sally Solari Mystery series. It can, however, stand on its own. This is a delightful series perfect for those wonderful lazy afternoons at the beach or quiet evenings in with a cup of tea. Leslie Karst does a nice job of balancing mayhem, duplicity and a touch of romance. This book is less suspenseful than the previous books in the series, but it is still a nice read. The recipes at the end appear appetizing. I enjoyed it.
CozyMysteryLover1 More than 1 year ago
I really tried to like this book. I attempted to read it 3 different times. The story fell flat, it had nothing that grabbed me or captured my attention. I had hoped that one of my attempts would have sparked an interest, but it just didn't happen. I voluntarily read an ARC of this book provided by the publisher and NetGalley.
CozyOnUp More than 1 year ago
Sally Solari, former attorney and current restauranteur from Santa Cruz, California grew up in the family restaurant. When the body of an old local fisherman, and regular customer at her Father’s restaurant, is discovered by her dog, Buster, on the beach where she is taking a painting class, Sally finds herself playing detective. While I enjoyed beyond whisked away to the Monterey Bay area for a while, the story was more focused on Sally’s personal life than solving the mystery. Running a restaurant, not counting helping in another, is a labor of love with lots of hours spent working. Between running her own restaurant, Gauguin, and helping her Father prepare for a party to celebrate the visit from the town’s sister city in Italy at his restaurant, Solari’s, I’m not sure how Sally managed to have free time to paint, throw a dinner party, and solve a murder. While the author’s writing style provides for an easy read, I just didn’t truly get into it. Perhaps not having read the previous books in this series caused me to view the story differently, but I believe that books should be written to stand alone. And when well written, they will also make me want to read the previous books. I’m sorry to say that this voracious reader does not find either to be the case with Death Al Fresco.