Live and Let Chai (Seaside Café Mysteries)
1st in Series
Setting – North Carolina
Sourcebooks Landmark (July 10, 2018)
Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
Kindle ASIN: B07CP2VVGS
The first book in a delightful new beachside cozy mystery series!
Trouble is brewing in Everly’s new café. Can she bag the culprit?
Life hasn’t been so sweet for Everly Swan over the past couple of years, but now that she is back in her seaside hometown and the proud owner of a little iced tea shop and café right on the beach, things are finally starting to look up—until a curmudgeonly customer turns up dead on the boardwalk. With one of her hallmark glass tea jars lying right next to him and an autopsy that reports poison in his system, it doesn’t look good for Everly or her brand new business.
As the townspeople of Charm, formerly so welcoming and homey, turn their back on Everly, she fights to dig up clues about who could have had it in for the former town councilman. With a maddeningly handsome detective discouraging her from uncovering leads and a series of anonymous attacks on Everly and her business, it will take everything she’s got to keep this mystery from boiling over.
Welcome to Charm. Everly Swan has just opened her iced tea shop and café in a historic home on the beach, but not everyone is happy about it. Benedict Paine is being a royal pain. He is using his position as councilman to try to close Everly down. When he is found dead on the boardwalk with one of the canning jars she serves her tea in close by, she quickly becomes the prime suspect. Why would she do that? Sabotage her new business over a grumpy old man? Unfortunately, the town of Charm is no longer charming. Thanks to a certain detective Everly has lost all her customers and the formerly charming residents believe she actually killed Paine. Everly is teed off and knows the only way to save her business is to find the killer herself, no matter how much trouble she gets into with that certain detective. But that also puts her in the killer’s crosshairs.
This new series is off to a delightful start!
Bree Baker has created realistic and engaging characters. Everly has come home to Charm and opened Sand, Sun, and Tea. Her aunts own the Blessed Bee honey shop not far from Everly’s. There is a superstition that the woman in the family are cursed when it comes to love. Enter one hunky detective, who is new in town and seems to set Everly’s heart aflutter, that is when he is NOT announcing to everyone she is a murderer or lecturing her NOT to get involved in his case. Our amateur sleuth does get in a little over her head and enough to make the real killer nervous. I really enjoyed her relationship with her aunts. They are an amazing support system. They are there to help her in any way she needs and their confidence in her success shines through.
There are a couple of mysteries to solve. Of course, the murder of the councilman, but there was also someone vandalizing the cute little box libraries along the beach. It gets me pretty upset when people destroy books. Okay, back to the main mystery, the murder. Knowing Everly didn’t do it I zeroed in on two suspects right away. There were many clues telling me I was correct in my thinking and it wasn’t long before I narrowed down the suspects to one. I love it when I am right!
The setting, a beach, sand, sun, iced tea, a bookstore, little libraries, was a wonderful escape. I would give almost anything for a beach vacation. And this book is a wonderful book to read while lounging on the beach or by the pool. Ms. Baker’s words will take you there too if you are sitting on your deck with no water around or in your comfy chair inside your house like I was.
This was a very entertaining read. My interest has been piqued, I want to get to know these characters better and am very interested in where the author is going to take them.
Bree Baker is a Midwestern writer, obsessed with small-town high jinks, sweet tea, and the sea. She’s been telling stories to her family, friends, and strangers for as long as she can remember, and more often than not, those stories feature a warm ocean breeze and a recipe she’s sure to ruin. Now, she’s working on those fancy cooking skills and dreaming up adventures for the Seaside Cafe mysteries. Her debut title, Live & Let Chai releases from Sourcebooks in July 2018. Bree is a member of Sisters in Crime, International Thriller Writers and the Romance Writers of America. She is represented by Jill Marsal of Marsal Lyon Literary Agency.
Find out more on her website here. Book #2 – No Good Tea Goes Unpunished – Coming Soon!
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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. Receiving a complimentary copy in no way reflected my review of this book. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”