On Flashback Fridays I will share with you
the books I was not able to review
when they were first released that have been screaming at me
from my To-Be-Read bookshelf.
Here Comes the Fudge (A Candy-Coated Mystery)
9th in Series
Setting – Mackinac Island, Michigan
Kensington Cozies (September 28, 2021)
Paperback : 272 pages
ISBN-10 : 1496727606
ISBN-13 : 978-1496727602
Kindle ASIN : B08RWFKD68
Fudge shop owner Allie McMurphy never expected her maid of honor duties to include clearing the groom of murder . . .
THE BODY OF A CRIME
It’s late spring on picturesque Mackinac Island, Michigan. Allie is prepping her Historic McMurphy Hotel and Fudge Shop for the start of the tourist season and her best friend Jenn’s wedding. But when Jenn’s fiancé Shane, a crime scene investigator on the island, misses a dinner date, the two friends go looking for him. Led by Allie’s bichonpoo Mal into an alley, they come upon Shane standing over a body with a bloody knife in his hand. Shane won’t say what’s happened, just tells them to call 911. As the CSI is taken into custody by his colleagues, including Allie’s beau Rex Manning, the fudge maker vows to prove her friend’s fiancé is not a killer—before the ceremony turns into a jailhouse wedding . . .
Tourist season is just starting on Mackinac Island and the McMurphy Hotel and Fudge Shop is going to be very busy. Allie’s best friend Jenn is back in town and she has two weddings lined up with the guests filling the hotel. One of those weddings is her own and she has ticked off everything on her to-do list. The one thing not on her list was MURDER and having her fiancé Shane named the police’s prime suspect has really fudged up her plans. Everyone that knows Shane knows he would never kill anyone but he’s not talking and neither is Allie’s tentative boyfriend Rex. They want Jenn and Allie to leave the investigation to them but the entire town knows there is no way that is going to happen.
I was so happy to return to Mackinac Island. It really is an idyllic setting that I have always wanted to visit. For now, I have to settle for Ms. Coco’s delightful descriptions for a virtual vacation.
The characters in this series have really worked their way into my heart. Allie is happy all the renovations are complete and soon the outside will have a fresh coat of paint and guests will be filling all the rooms and tourists will be popping in to buy her fudge. She is also excited about Jenn’s wedding and wants to be sure everything is perfect for her. True best friends, they stick together through thick and thin. Their guys are being pretty shady in this installment but think they have a good reason. Newlyweds Frances and Douglas, they are so cute together. They are truly rocks that Allie can always lean on. They really seem to be unflappable no matter the crisis.
With Jenn’s wedding taking place soon Shane’s family is staying off the island, but her family and Allie’s parents all check in to the McMurphy. I loved that Allie’s mom and dad came for the wedding. They are so supportive of everything Allie is doing with the hotel and fudge shop. Plus they were needed when the scheduled plans went awry. They too remained calm under pressure and allowed Allie the time to do a bit of sleuthing along with her maid of honor duties which are vast when the groom is accused of murder.
Ms. Coco has created such a genuine group of core characters for this series. Truthfully most of the people we meet have good hearts and are willing to help anyone in any way they can. It wouldn’t be a murder mystery without a bad apple or two but she hides them very well until all the clues are mixed together and fall into the right place.
The mystery she has penned in Here Comes the Fudge really tugs on the heartstrings because you want Jenn and Shane’s wedding to go off without a hitch. Allie does turn to a group she knows hears all the gossip on the island to try to get to the bottom of the crime. These ladies are a hoot but they are a fantastic source. The author does an excellent job of twisting things up which means Allie needs more than the seniors can tell her to find the real killer. With plenty of misdirection, I had eliminated the true culprit and was surprised by the very exciting ending.
Romance in this story has an interesting twist too. Allie has a new admirer. . . yup and Rex is not happy.
I can’t forget the fudge recipes. I think I gained 5 pounds just reading them. Peanut Butter and Chocolate Fudge, oh, dear, so easy to make, I am in big trouble.
Here Comes the Fudge is a strong example of a perfect cozy mystery and a Perfect Escape. A strong family element, true friendships, and lovable pets, all brought together with a captivating mystery, plenty of humor, and a smidgen of romance. I loved it!
The next book in this fun series, A Midsummer Night’s Fudge is being released on May 24. I will be reading and reviewing it soon!
Your Escape Into A Good Book Travel Agent
About the Author
Nancy Coco is the byline chosen by popular author Nancy J. Parra for use exclusively with the Candy-Coated Mysteries series. With degrees in engineering, journalism, and a MA in Writing Popular Fiction, Nancy has published in cozy mystery, romantic suspense, and sweet western historical romances.
An Air Force veteran who rose to the rank of sergeant, Nancy is a member of an online group of female veterans who are authors—“Military Women Who Have Turned Sword to Pen.” The group’s website is www.romvets.com.
Nancy is also a member of Mystery Writers of America and Sisters in Crime. She has given workshops on a number of writing topics and enjoys doing author panels at fan conferences such as Malice Domestic and Bouchercon. She lives in California with her dog—a bichonpoo affectionately known as Little Dog on Nancy’s Facebook and Twitter accounts.
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