Set in the seaside town of San Elmo, Calif., Bateman’s entertaining debut and series launch introduces former software engineer Claudia Simcoe, who now runs a marketplace for independent businesses selling “local and/or artisanal” products. Claudia has the unsavory task of confronting Lori Roth, owner of Lori’s Handmade Creations, when she discovers that Lori’s merchandise is in fact made in factories and available online at significantly cheaper prices. The next morning, Claudia arrives to open the marketplace and finds Lori dead, hit on the head with a pickle jar and garroted with a cheese-slicing wire. Unfortunately for Claudia, police chief Bill Lennox, a “man with a face like a disappointed frog,” wants to pin the death on her. Evidence starts stacking up, and Claudia has no choice but to investigate on her own. Another death raises the stakes. Claudia’s lively and often highly amusing narration presents plausible potential suspects and motives galore—all this plus intelligent furry and feathered friends. Cozy fans will eagerly await Claudia’s next adventure. Agent: Abby Saul, Lark Group. (June)
Murder Goes to Market is perfect for any reader in the market for mystery. You'll find a puzzling whodunnit, an endearing amateur sleuth to root for and, in bucolic San Elmo, California, a setting you'll wish you could visit. And it's all handcrafted by the finest local artisans. (Well, or wonderfully written by Daisy Bateman, anyway.) Plop a copy into your shopping basket today!
This is my favorite debut novel ever. Bateman's wit, warmth, and charming depth of descriptive power don't just leap off the page, they welcome you into the company of such splendid characters you won't want to leave. Pick your coziest chair, bring snacks, and don't forget to hydrate. May she write fast: I can't wait to devour her next book.
In this charming debut, Daisy Bateman offers a deliciously fresh and funny take on cozy mysteries. Readers will want to spend more time with the irrepressible Claudia Simcoe, not to mention the quirky vendors and customers of her artisanal (but occasionally murderous) market hall located on the atmospheric Sonoma coast. I know *I’m* already hungry for more Murder Goes to Market!
Susan C. Shea
A lively, witty mystery set in a coastal northern California town that’s so real I can almost smell the ocean and hear the gulls. And as Daisy Bateman writes: “If you had asked Claudia what she expected to come of her opening an artisanal marketplace in a seaside town, “assembles a mismatched team to investigate a murder” would not have been her first guess.
There’s nothing like a good murder weapon, and Daisy Bateman delivers, with several, including a jar of pickles, a cheese wire, and a butcher knife. Bateman brings us Claudia Simcoe, a smart businesswoman and manager of an artisanal market who knows her way around software, her tenants’ two-year gouda, and the occasional goose. Claudia is a rich character who gets into the kind of trouble we love: tracking down a murderer who has not only killed, but pushed Claudia to the top of the suspect list. Bateman writes with confidence, providing descriptions that are a sensory delight, whether of frittatas or splendorous bay and ocean views, and a crew of characters who stand out as unique and unpredictable individuals. We hold our breath as Claudia investigates, sometimes sneaking around, other times frighteningly out in the open, but always holding our attention.
This foodie cozy is not too sweet, and not too sharp, but juuuust right. The setting - a farm-to-fork marketplace and cottage by the sea in California - pulls us in on page one and the day-dream is complete when we meet Claudia Simcoe, who's a BFF waiting to happen. Of course, murder gets in the way but the plot is tight, the twists convincing, and the resolution nicely sprung. And did I say it's laugh-out-loud funny? Neatly up-ending some cozy conventions, Murder Goes to Market is a confident series debut, with just a whiff of what's on sale in book two.
A farm-to-table marketplace owner falls back on the computer skills she thought she’d left behind to solve a murder.
Claudia Simcoe used to work as a software engineer but gave it all up for the quiet of a small Sonoma coastal town, where she ekes out a living running a market and lives in a tiny cottage that came with the property. When someone leaves Claudia proof that her stall holder Lori Roth’s handmade products are actually cheap knockoffs, she’s forced to confront Lori, who’s naturally furious at being forced out. Next morning Claudia finds Lori dead, garroted with a cheese cutter from the Cow Cheese Company stand. The local police chief, who’s both incompetent and nasty, clearly has Claudia in his sights. Although his attractive deputy is more sympathetic, Claudia quickly realizes it’s up to her to solve this crime before she’s arrested. Luckily, she has plenty of free time now that the market’s shut down. Because none of her other tenants profess to know anything about Lori’s background, Claudia calls on her computer search skills. One of the boxes Lori had left in the empty cottage Claudia uses for extra storage contains personal property, including a notebook with some cryptic notes and a photo of Lori’s BFF. The arrival of Lori’s ex-husband only complicates the case. But Claudia soldiers on with moral support from friends and her newly adopted puppy.
A pleasing debut for a complicated sleuth in this up-to-date take on the cozy mystery.