Catch Me If You Candy: A Bakeshop Mystery
17th in the Series
Setting – Oregon
Minotaur Books (August 22, 2023)
Mass Market Paperback : 352 pages
ISBN-10 : 1250854407
ISBN-13 : 978-1250854407
Kindle ASIN : B0BQGJGX34
Things are getting spooky in Catch Me If You Candy, the next delicious installment in the Bakeshop Series from author Ellie Alexander, set in Ashland, Oregon!
Halloween has arrived in picturesque Ashland, Oregon, and all of the ghouls and goblins have descended on Main Street for the annual parade. It’s a giant street party and Torte is right in the mix.
Jules Capshaw and her team have been baking up autumn delights and trick-or-Torte bags filled with sugar cookie cutouts, spiced cider, and mummy munch. It’s the end of the season at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, which means that the costumes for the parade are going to be out of this world. The elaborate guises even extend to pets. The grand marshal of this year’s parade is no other than a regal pug aptly named King George. Jules is delighted to get to share the experience with Carlos and Ramiro, but things take a dark turn when she discovers a dragon slumped in front of the bakeshop.
Jules is distraught when she realizes the dragon is dead. She’s also shaken because a few days before the parade, her mother’s Mahjong partner Helen discovered a warning note about a dragon in an antique game set. Jules hopes it’s just a random coincidence, but as the clues begin to unfold it becomes evident that there’s been a murder on All Hallow’s Eve. Can Juliet sift out the truth before the killer comes after her?
Halloween is a big deal in Ashland, Oregon. It starts with the annual parade followed by a huge street party. The team at Torte has been busy filling trick-or-Torte bags with mummy munch and Halloween-themed sugar cookies.
It also marks the end of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s season and the actors, human and canine, will be involved in all the Halloween festivities. This year’s grand marshall just happens to be a royal pup named King George. Jules is so excited to share all the events with her husband Carlos and his son Ramiro.
There is quite a crowd of people but when Jules and Carlos arrive back at Torte. Then they notice a person in a dragon costume down on the ground in front of the shop. Jules quickly sees that the person is dead. She is quite upset because just a few days ago one of her mother’s friends found a note warning about a dead dragon in an antique Mahjong set. Is it a connection to the murder or just a coincidence? Jules is determined to find out.
I love the characters in this series! Jules and Carlos’s relationship is strong. I am happy that Ramiro has been added to the mix and his presence continues to grow in each new story. He is a good kid and parenting him is pretty easy. Thanks to Jules’s mother, a true gem, all the employees at Torte are as close as family. They work so well together and come up with so many delicious things to serve from special coffee drinks to soups and sandwiches and every fantastic baked sweets you can imagine. The Sunday suppers they host are so creative. All of Ms. Alexander’s characters are well-developed and genuine and fresh even after 17 books.
Several new characters are introduced. Actors and staff associated with the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. It was crazy to see what two women would go through to have their dogs get the leading role in a play. We also meet a group of ladies that love to play Mahjong and Camille the new owner of the hospice shop where a unique antique Mahjong set was found. All the new characters were interesting. I must say I now want to learn how to learn to play Mahjong.
The mystery was very well-written. There are several suspects along with several twists and turns. I was keeping notes to keep everyone straight. I did pare my list down to two rather quickly. As usual, Lance was excited to investigate but I did enjoy the way Jules and Carlos talked through the clues and motives. A bit of confusion sets up a standoff and a very gripping reveal.
Catch Me If You Candy is a fun Halloween-themed cozy mystery with some of my favorite fictional characters. Each visit to Ashland and Torte is always a good time, I just wish each book came with free samples because I am always left craving all the delectable treats described within the pages.
I am already looking forward to my next trip, A Smoking Bun is set to be released on February 20, 2024.
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About the Author
Ellie Alexander (aka Kate Dyer-Seeley), author of the Bakeshop Mystery Series (St. Martin’s Press), is a Pacific Northwest native who spends ample time testing pastry recipes in her home kitchen or at one of the many famed coffeehouses nearby. When she’s not coated in flour, you’ll find her outside exploring hiking trails and trying to burn off calories consumed in the name of research.
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.”