Alene Baron’s vegetarian bakery/cafe Whipped and Sipped is a hub of community activity–not always the kind Alene wants to see. Friends and neighbors wander in, a friend wants her to hire his son. There is some much going on, and so many characters it’s hard to keep track. Home isn’t much different. Her busy apartment in Chicago is home to Alene, her three children, and her father Cal. There are neighbors across the hall and down the hall, some have married and divorced each other and taken up with new people. Folks wander into her apartment and out. Again, it’s hard to keep track.
And then there is a murder. Right in the apartment building, as fate would have it. And everything and everyone suddenly come into focus. The reader realizes there are probably 20 red herrings running around, and one of them is the murderer.
Alene has been divorced for a while and would love to meet someone interesting. Enter detective Frank Shaw. He gets her attention, but will she get his? What about the memorial for the deceased? And who’s doing what? Alene finds herself babbling every time she sees Frank. Her mouth moves way faster than her brain sometimes, but she’s no idiot and she’s going to find a killer. Just wait and see.
In this fun and fast-paced debut novel, G.P. Gottlieb breathes new life into the traditional cozy mystery. Plus there’s the food–mouthwatering morsels coming at the reader from every direction. You’ll want to read Battered, and look forward to more from this new author!
Thanks to the publisher for an ARC.