Culinary whiz and reluctant amateur sleuth, Amy Ridley, has a lot on her plate. Her very pregnant best friend, Carla, can barely move from her couch per doctor's orders. So Amy is tasked with preparing meals for the expanding family along with baking endless pans of brownies to quench Carla's pregnancy cravings. Not only is she playing chef, but she's also trying to convince the mommy-to-be that she needs to have a baby shower. But when a restaurant owner is murdered at a blogging conference, Amy finds herself in a race to catch the killer before the baby is born.
As Carla's baby bump gets bigger, so does the list of suspects. While Amy pares down the potential murderers and staves off disgruntled cooking competition rivals, the clock ticks down, the baby's arrival draws closer, and the danger grows stronger! If Amy doesn't watch her back, she may be the next member of the competition going down.
Culinary Competition Mysteries:
Pies & Peril (book #1)
Chicken Soup & Homicide (book #2)
Christmas Canapés & Sabotage (short story)
Doughnuts & Deadly Schemes (book #3)
Barbecue & Bad Juju (short story in the "Killer Beach Reads" collection)
Fudge Brownies & Murder (book #4)
What critics are saying about the Culinary Competition Mysteries:
"PIES & PERIL is the perfect cozy to curl up with in your favorite chair or at the beach while enjoying some sun. It's teeming with a lot of charm and great characters along with many tidbits of delectable goodies perfect for any foodie. I was really looking forward to reading (Janel Gradowski's) first full length novel and it didn't disappoint! PIES & PERIL is sure to please any reader who loves their cozy mysteries!"
~ Peeking Between the Pages
"PIES & PERIL is a beautiful debut and I know I will be eagerly awaiting the second book in the series. (Amy Ridley) had me laughing and smiling, and the warm cozy feeling of reading a good mystery never left me."
~ Cozy Reader
"PIES & PERIL is a fun read with, murder, arson, threats and romance in the plot! This is a very enjoyable story with a very satisfactory closure. There is also an added bonus of recipes at the end of the book. Amy's many trial recipes made me hungry and inspired me to bake some goodies! Enjoy!"
~ Indy Girl
|Product dimensions:||5.25(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.44(d)|
About the Author
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I loved this mystery. I read a lot of mysteries and any time that I don't figure out who did it half way through the book is a great book in my opinion. I have fallen in love with these characters and really look forward to the next book by this author. Another reviewer commented on the third person, I happen to prefer the third person and really added to my enjoyment of the book.
Fudge Brownies & Murder is my favorite book in the Culinary Competition Mystery series. It is the fourth book in the series but can be read as a standalone. Amy Ridley is spending a lot of time creating brownie recipes and making brownies for her very pregnant, bedridden best friend Carla Shepler. Amy’s also working overtime trying to convince Carla she needs to have a baby shower. I have to admit, going into the story, I was ready to not like Amy because of her pushiness. I thought she was trying to push her wanting to have a baby shower onto Carla. In the past, I found Amy to be a little irritating, in wanting Carla to do what she wanted her to do. As it turns out, in the end, Amy just wanted to give Carla a baby shower as something to look forward to, instead of being miserable stuck on the sofa. There are a couple of reasons why I liked Fudge Brownies & Murder: 1) Janel Gradowski gives readers more of a look into Amy & Alex’s marriage. You see more of their love life, which is closed door, but it was a nice change to see them interact that way. 2) Detective Bruce Shepler, Carla’s husband, and Amy actually work together to catch the murderer of a local restaurant owner. In fact, Bruce actually asks Amy for her help. Bruce has his reasons for including Amy. But for her part, Amy doesn’t really do anything to get herself into trouble. 3) New characters are introduced or at least characters I didn’t pay attention to before. Old characters are shown in a new light, allowing you to actually understand them better. 4) Janel doesn’t leave any loose ends that leave you wondering what’s going to happen. 5) The killer reveal. Talk about thinking the story is going to go one way, but goes another. Unfortunately for them, what goes around comes around and karma loves to bite you in the rear. I’ve read all the books in this series. I love the way Janel has written her characters (Amy and Carla), allowing readers to see them grow as people, with their lives evolving. I’m looking forward to seeing what else is in store for Amy, Carla, and the rest of the people in Kellerton, Michigan. Oh, it should be noted that while the story is told in third person, it is told with Amy and Carla alternating in telling the story. **Received a copy from the author in exchange for an honest unbiased opinion.** Rating: 4.5 stars
This one was a slow start for me for some reason, and I wasn't sure if I would end up liking it or even finishing it. I was having a hard time staying interested, and I usually love these kinds of mysteries. Then towards the middle, it really picked up for me and I had a hard time putting it down! Definitely kept my interest then! Be sure to stick with it, it's a really good mystery read! Now, I want to read the others in the series for sure! **I was given a free copy by the publisher in exchange for my honest review.
It is hard to put down once you start reading. I was given this book as an ARC and once I started reading I could not wait to find out how everything evolved. You find yourself absorbed in the lives of Amy and Carla and the other characters. Who would have had the motive and opportunity to murder the victim? It seems that many fit this description.