Greetings! A Whisker in the Dark by Leighann Dobbs releases on July 31. It is the second novel in The Oystercove Guest House series. Pride, Prejudice and Poison by Elizabeth Blake will be out on August 13. It is the debut of A Jane Austen Society Mystery series. All He'll Ever Need by Loree Lough publishes on August 27. It is the premiere of A Little Child Shall Lead Them series. How do you keep track of book that you want to read? Notebook, Goodreads, or a spreadsheet?
Death in a Budapest Butterfly by Julia Buckley takes readers to Riverwood in September. Hana Keller co-runs Maggie’s Tea House with her Hungarian mother and grandmother which features the European-style tea service. They are hosting a tea for St. Stephen’s Magyar Women group that day, and Hana will be featuring her newly acquired Anna Weatherley butterfly teacup in the decorations. Hana uses the butterfly teacup as the centerpiece to the table where her grandmother, Juliana will be reading tea leaves for the guests. While the guests are enjoying the scrumptious pastries and drinking their tea, Hana notices Ava Novak sipping from her butterfly cup. Ava is later found outside the ladies’ room by Hana and she has indulged in her last cup of tea. Detective Erik Wolf quickly arrives and takes charge of the investigation. The butterfly teacup is taken away as evidence when a warning is found written inside it and Detective Wolf shuts down Maggie’s. When the ladies start getting cancelations, they know they need to solve Ava’s murder, or their business will go down the drain like day old tea.
Death in a Budapest Butterfly is the first novel in A Hungarian Tea House Mystery series written by Julia Buckley (A Writer’s Apprentice Mystery series). Hana Keller is twenty-six years old and of Hungarian descent. Hungarian food and the culture are a big part of the family’s lives. We get a comprehensive account of the various Hungarian dishes prepared. It was interesting to learn more about the Hungarian culture, cuisine, traditions and folklore. I wish, though, that the Hungarian words had come with a pronunciation guide (next to each word). Hana works with her mother (Maggie Keller) and her grandmother (Juliana Horvath) to run Maggie’s Tea House which features high tea and delicious pastries made by Francois, a French culinary student. I enjoyed hearing about Hana’s teacup collection. The mystery starts off with a bang early in the book. Since many of the suspects are Hungarian, Detective Wolf asks them to be present while he conducts interviews to help with translations. This allows readers to be introduced to various characters plus we find out what they knew about the victim. Hana stays involved in the case as she uncovers information and relays it to Det. Wolf. While I was able to pinpoint the who, I did not know the why. Clues are revealed as Hana talks to various people in the community. I appreciated that we are given all the details of the murder for a complete wrap-up. There were instant sparks between the single Hana and the fetching detective. Hana’s grandmother is happy to give them nudge or two since she would like to see Hana wed. Erik Wolf needs more fleshing out because I thought he was one-dimensional (lacks life). There is a hint that Hana and her grandmother have special psychic abilities. I hope this will feature more prominently in future books. Julia Buckley is a detail oriented writer. She needs to find a balance between not enough and too much which would greatly help the flow and pacing of the book (in my opinion). My favorite phrase was when Detective Wolf said to Hana, “You’ve got the bug, haven’t you? Solving puzzles exhilarates you.” I can certainly understand the feeling. There are recipes at the end for Chicken Paprikash, dumplings and stuffed cabbage. Death in a Budapest Butterfly has Hungarian charm, dainty teacups, a poisoned patsy, a canny killer, a dashing detective, and a neophyte sleuth.
Death in a Budapest Butterfly will be out on Tuesday, July 30 and can be pre-ordered on Amazon. Thank you for joining me today. I will share my review of Mrs. Morris and the Ghost by Traci Wilton tomorrow. I hope you have a stellar day. Take care and Happy Reading!
The Avid Reader