Madeline Bean, caterer to the stars, is in the middle of the biggest job of her career. She and her partner Wesley have pulled off Hollywood's most outrageous A-list Halloween party for notorious producer Bruno Huntley, complete with an eerie fortuneteller who is astonishingly accurate, and exotic food that's to die for. Before long, Bruno is thrashing and writhing out on the dance floor. Just one problem: he's not standing up, And soon, he's not even breathing.
The newly late Mr. Huntley was poisoned, that's certain. But the number of suspects with a yen to send Bruno to the devil could fill an audition for extras in the next Quentin Tarantino flick. When Wesley is arrested for the murder because of a long-standing dispute with the maniacal mogul, Madeline knows he couldn't be guilty. But to prove it, she has to wade through the muck of a mudslinging family, outrun a pair of crazed canines, dodge a pair of well-aimed bullets, and expose a slew of secrets that could put a soap opera to shame. Somebody's cooked up a murder, and it's up to Madeline to find out whobefore she faces a fadeout of her own.
|Series:||Madeline Bean Series , #1|
|Product dimensions:||4.18(w) x 6.75(h) x 0.64(d)|
About the Author
Jerrilyn Farmer, the author of seven acclaimed, award-winning Madeline Bean novels, is a TV writer who has written for game shows such as Jeopardy! and Supermarket Sweep, and sketch comedy specials for Dana Carvey, Jon Lovitz, Timothy Stack, Cheri Oteri, Tim Meadows, and others. Farmer also teaches mystery writing at the UCLA Extension's Writers Program. She lives in Southern California.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
The single compliment most fitting for a culinary mystery was earned here: The opening paragraph made my mouth water. It featured stuff simmering on a commercial stove, the ambiance of aroma, and a continuum of taste bud appeal carried out in balsamic detail. Farmer knows how to surge the saliva glands! She enhances the essence of ¿taking a bite of bread,¿ giving detailed, on the tongue descriptions, thereby spreading warm, buttery rapture to the senses, repeatedly interjecting flavors into the plot at just the right intervals. Her yummy scene of making polenta from scratch (occurring 1/3 into the story) was exquisite flavor enhancement, as she stirred with one hand, held the phone with the other, and went through the process with enough detail to cause auto drool, no recipe necessary. Diane Mott Davidson, move over a stool at the communal breakfast bar. Make room for another friend. Not only does Jerrilyn Farmer use all the natural culinary draws to their devilish levels of delight, whenever she¿s not cooking, she packs nearly every scene with heated, jazzy action and well-spiced intrigue. No chance of even a quarter-inch of reader boredom getting within a mile of Farmer¿s aura. The opening scenes around the front stage, huge Halloween party for a demon-blooded (metaphorically) Hollywood mogul were intense enough to seat the reader into a race car and throw him against the backrest, sans seatbelt, as the motor roared into a dancing choreography of ¿let¿s have a party!¿ When the party¿s over and the next morning arrives, I¿m welcoming the pace-drop to cozy, ready for the sensual scenarios to begin, luxuriating in the fascinatingly unique, ideal home/office setup Miss Bean has arranged for herself. Being invited to share the intimate details of a character leisurely opening her day, indulging and divulging personal routines, is the strongest ploy of the cozy mystery¿s ability to allow a reader to let down the hair and begin living in. I also enjoy the ways Farmer comes up with to get her heroine into and out of jams of sonic-boom-paced, risk-factor-rich intensity. The scene of Madeline being chased by 2 bad guys was exquisite action, and her means of evading and escaping them were simply ingenious. When I say simple, I mean it in the most efficient, absolute sense of the word, which leaves a person feeling ¿yeah, that would work. Sure. Why didn¿t I think of that? How deliciously easy and right.¿
Annoying to try to read only about 50 words per page so i did not read the entire book.