Welcome to Cozy Wednesday!
I am delighted to share my thoughts on Karen Rose Smith’s new book today!
Murder with Cucumber Sandwiches (A Daisy’s Tea Garden Mystery)
3rd in Series
Setting – Pennsylvania
Kensington (May 28, 2019)
Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
Kindle ASIN: B07H1YBJ6S
Daisy’s Tea Garden in Pennsylvania’s Amish country is known for its elegant finger foods—but now owner Daisy Swanson has to finger a killer . . .
Restaurant critic Derek Schumaker, notorious for his bitter reviews, is about to visit Daisy’s Tea Garden, and Daisy and Aunt Iris are simmering with anxiety. A bad word from the culinary curmudgeon could really hurt their business, but Daisy tries to stay confident. After all, how can he resist her cucumber sandwiches with pimento spread—not to mention the cheesy cauliflower soup and strawberry walnut salad?
Schumaker takes a to-go order when the afternoon tea service is done, which Daisy hopes is a good sign. But when he perishes from a seizure, it looks like his food was dosed with something deadly. Considering a threat that recently appeared on his blog—and whispers of scandal in his past—Daisy has quite an assortment of suspects to sift through . . .
Includes delicious recipes!
Holy Cucumbers! When restaurant critic Derek Schumaker arrives at Daisy’s Tea Garden Daisy tries to stay positive. She knows the food they serve is fantastic. Aunt Iris is a little more pensive. The man is known for his derogatory reviews. Reviews that can shut restaurants down. When Schumaker requests a to-go order of cucumber sandwiches, Daisy knows they have the review in the bag.
That all changes when the police show up investigating the critic’s death pointing fingers at the sandwiches from Daisy’s Tea Garden. This is bad for business and bad for her employees especially when two of them is clearly hiding something. Daisy knows there are a plethora of suspects that should be on the list, just from all the restaurants he has critiqued badly. The man had received numerous threats, one recently on his blog. Daisy decides to delve deep into the man’s life to see if she can catch the killer before her business is tainted and out of business.
It this 3rd book of this series the author has filled Daisy’s plate with so much. She is juggling the murder, an employee that is going through something he refuses to share, her younger daughter’s relationship with her birth mom, her older daughter wants to come home from college to talk, and she is trying to have a relationship with Jonas Groft, all the while trying to keep customers coming into the tea shop while many think their food killed the critic.
The author strikes a nice balance of work, home, and murder drama. All the character’s lives are intertwined and the relationships are all evolving in a believable way. Daisy has a huge heart, but that heart is still healing from the loss of her husband. Her girls are growing up and dealing with some heavy issues. Daisy’s compassionate soul reaches out to everyone. She treats her employees and friends like family and would do anything for them.
Daisy has a way with people, they open up to her like they never would for the prickly Detective Morris Rappaport, so the murder investigation gets very interesting. Jonas is kinda caught in the middle. Ms. Smith has plotted this mystery perfectly. She kept me guessing right up until the very end.
I enjoy everything about this book/series. The characters are warm and engaging, the mystery is well thought out and presented, and Willow Creek is a place I would love to visit.
These stories are best read in order to follow the character growth but enough background is given to read each one on their own. I was excited to see this week, that the 4th book in this series – Murder with Cherry Tarts will be out later this year and is already up for preorder.
About the Author
Karen Rose Smith likes to chat with her readers on social media. You can find her on Facebook at KarenRoseSmithBooks and on Twitter @karenrosemith. Find out more about her mysteries at https://www.karenrosesmithmysteries.com.
Also by this Author
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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.”