The Walking Bread (A Bread Shop Mystery)
3rd in Series
Setting – California
Kensington (September 25, 2018)
Mass Market Paperback: 304 pages
Digital ASIN: B078QSJ8G4
Beloved Mexican bakery Yeast of Eden has scored the catering deal at the annual Santa Sofia, California, art car parade and ball. But when a contestant turns up dead, making bread will be the yeast of their problems . . .
Apprentice baker Ivy Culpepper sees art cars everywhere she turns. Besides helping prepare the bread and pastry for Santa Sofia’s annual spring event, she’s the official photographer, documenting the elaborate cars, outspoken artists, and riotous celebrations. Even her family’s in on the act: her brother Billy has been runner-up in the competition more times than she can count—but this is going to be the year he celebrates his win in the victory lane.
But after Billy’s rival, Max Litman, revs up his bombastic showmanship, Billy is once again set to cruise into second place. Until Max is found dead—positioned as a prop in his own art car. The whole town knows there’s no love lost between the two men, and Billy is the prime suspect. Now Ivy will have to sift through collusion, deception, gossip, and lies to find out what really happened. But with the help of her octogenarian Watson, her restaurateur beau, and her adopted aunts at Yeast of Eden, she knows she can take the heat . . .
Spring in Santa Sofia, California, means it is time for the annual Art Car Parade and Ball. Ivy Culpepper is very familiar with the event, her brother Billy has come in second for years, always losing to Max Litman. This year should be different. Billy has a fantastic idea inspired by his mother that has passed away. Ivy is amazed by the work of car art he has created. The cars are all being moved to the pre-event site and Ivy notices a very creepy car. Her pug, Agatha, really has an issue with the car, actually barring teeth. When Ivy examines it closer the thing she thought was a prop turns out to be a man. A very dead man. Max Litman is dead and a huge piece of evidence points right at Billy. Her best friend Deputy Sheriff Emmaline Davis has been sidelined because of her relationship with Billy, so the chief is taking charge. Ivy knows she is going to have to work hard and find the real killer because he thinks the case is open and shut and Billy is his man.
This art car thing is brand new to me. I have been to many car shows but never an art car show and the whole thing drew me into this story. I was fascinated by the author’s detailed descriptions of the cars. What a creative event.
Ivy Culpepper works at Yeast of Eden as an apprentice baker, but she trying to get her photography business off the ground. She was at the event to take pictures but Yeast of Eden is also one of the caters for the event so sleuthing out the real killer should be easy . . . NOT! The suspect pool is wide open and there is not a lot of clear evidence. With a little help from her friends and her pug, Ivy starts to piece things together and I was right there with her. Again the author’s vivid descriptions painted a vivid picture to put readers right on the spot.
Ms. Archer has created characters with depth. They are likable and relatable. They have grown in each story with a nice progression. I was taken by Billy’s tribute to his mother’s love of reading. It warmed my heart the way she passed the love on to her children.
The story was very well-plotted and entertaining. It was perfectly paced and held my attention the whole way. I love the creative title and the way it tied into the story.
This story stands on its own but reading the series from the start will make it more enjoyable.
About the Author
The indefatigable Winnie Archer is a middle school teacher by day and a writer by night. Born in a beach town in California, she now lives in an inspiring century-old house in North Texas and loves being surrounded by real-life history. She fantasizes about spending summers writing in quaint, cozy locales, has a love/hate relationship with both yoga and chocolate, adores pumpkin spice lattes, is devoted to her five kids and husband, and can’t believe she’s lucky enough to be living the life of her dreams. Visit her online at WinnieArcher.com.
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