Wednesday, October 5, 2016

High Kicks, Hot Chocolate and Homicides

I hope everyone is having a very special day!  It is cookie day in my house.  My mother ran out of her chocolate chip cookies.  It gives me a chance to try out my new silicone baking mat by Walfos.  So far I just love it.  The cookies brown nicely and no sticking (and I do not have to use parchment paper).  I just have to remember they are in the oven and listen for the timer (I keep forgetting and get engrossed in a project).

High Kicks, Hot Chocolate and Homicides by Mary McHugh is the fifth book in The Happy Hoofer Mystery series.  The Happy Hoofers have been invited to do a special routine with the Rockettes for their Christmas show.  It will mean a lot of hard work for the Happy Hoofers.  The Happy Hoofers consists of Mary Louise, Gini, Janice, Tina, and Pat.  They are in their 50s and have danced in various places around the world (Russia, France and Spain for example).  Mary Louise is glad for the diversion.  Mary Louise has been married to George for 30 years, but she has been unhappy lately. Mary Louise met Dr. Mike Parnell on the Happy Hoofers adventure in Spain.  He is the opposite of George and makes her happy.  Mary Louise will have to make a decision.  In the meantime, the group is off to New York for their first meeting with the Rockettes.  They are greeted by Glenna Parsons.  Glenna introduces them to the rest of the Rockettes.   The Happy Hoofers will be doing a short routine with the Rockettes in Santa Claus outfits (that weigh 40 pounds).  After meeting the rest of the performers, the group heads out to enjoy the afternoon in New York.  There afternoon is cut short when they get a call to return to Radio City Music Hall.  Glenna was found dead (and in does not look like an accidental death).  Who wanted Glenna dead and why?  The Happy Hoofers start their training the next day, but the manage to get in a little investigating and sightseeing at the same time.  Unfortunately, Glenna was just the first victim.  Can the Happy Hoofers solve the murders before there are no more Rockettes left to perform?  Join Mary Louise, Gini, Janice, Tina, and Pat in New York for High Kicks, Hot Chocolate and Homicides!

High Kicks, Hot Chocolate and Homicides is an easy to read novel.  It can be a stand-alone book.  Mary McHugh rehashes what happened in the first four books of the Happy Hoofers Mystery series.  The mystery is not prominent in the book.  It plays out in the background, and it is simple to figure out.  The way the crime plays out near the end is actually very similar to what happened in another book in this series.  The book reads more like a romance novel as Mary Louise figures out what she wants to do with her life (stay with George or divorce him).  We also get updates on the other characters and what is happening in their lives.  There are recipes and Mary Louise’s cooking tips included in the book.  We are also taken to see several of the sights in New York.  I give High Kicks, Hot Chocolate and Homicides 3 out of 5 stars. I just found the novel to be predictable.  I wanted more mystery and less romance (which dominated this novel).

The first four books in The Happy Hoofers Mystery series are Chorus Lines, Caviar, and Corpses; Flamenco, Flan and Fatalities; Cancans, Croissants and Caskets; and Bossa Novas, Bikinis and Bad Ends.  The first book in the series is the best one in the whole series. I wish the rest of the series had been up to the same level. I received a complimentary copy of the novel in exchange for an honest review.  The comments and opinions expressed are strictly my own.

I appreciate you taking the time to visit my blog. I am currently reading Memory of Muskets by Kathleen Ernst.  I am off to get some chores done before I collapse for the day.  May you have an enjoyable and relaxing evening. Take care and Happy Reading!

The Avid Reader

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