Happy February 29! The older I get, the faster time seems to go. Have you noticed that? Secrets of My Heart by Tracie Peterson releases on March 3 along with The Ungodly Hour by Laura A. Egan, Love and Marriage at Harpers by Rosie Clarke, and The Numbers Game by Danielle Steel. A Forgotten Murder by Jude Deveraux will be out on March 10 and Light Shines on Promise Lodge by Charlotte Hubbard is out on March 31. I have thirty books to read in March and nine book tours. It will be a busy month. Now for the book pun of the day: What did the sketch book say to the novel? I am drawing a blank!
|Hannah & Delores get to visit Paramount
Coconut Layer Cake Murder by Joanne Fluke takes us back to Lake Eden, Minnesota. Doc Knight has ordered Hannah Swensen to take a vacation and he already has everything arranged for her. Hannah along with her mother, Delores are heading to Brentwood to help Lynne Larchmont pack up her home (this does not seem like a vacation to me). They are almost done with the packing when Hannah receives a frantic call from her sister, Michelle. Michelle’s beau, Detective Lonnie Murphy is the prime suspect in the murder of Darcy Hicks. Lonnie went to the Double Eagle bar to meet Brian and Cassie Polinski. It was Cassie’s birthday which they were celebrating with drinks and coconut layer cake that Lonnie picked up on the way. Darcy was at a nearby table with her boyfriend, Denny. The pair ended up fighting and Denny left Darcy without a ride home. Lonnie drove an impaired Darcy home and helped her into her bedroom. Lonnie wakes up on Darcy’s couch and is not sure how he got there. Before departing, Lonnie checks on Darcy and finds her dead in her bed. The only member of the Lake Eden police force who can investigate is Andrea’s husband, Bill. Hannah is needed to prove Lonnie’s innocence before he must turn in his dress blues for a prison jumpsuit.
|A cookie shop
Coconut Layer Cake Murder by Joanne Fluke is the twenty-fifth A Hannah Swensen Mystery. I have read all the books in this series and there is a marked difference between Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder and Coconut Layer Cake Murder. The mystery is not the primary focus of the story. It seems that most of the book is devoted to cooking, baking, eating, and chatting. More than half of the book is devoted to recipes. I have stuck with the series this long, and I am not about to quit. After the cliffhanger left in the last book, I wanted to know what was happening with Hannah. I like how close Hannah is to her family and friends. Delores, Michelle, Doc Knight, Andrea, Bill, Norman, Mike, Lonnie and all the regulars are back. Lonnie is accused of murdering an old high school classmate and he needs Hannah’s help if he is to prove he is innocent. Mike is Lonnie’s partner so that bans him from investigating and Lonnie’s brother is also off the case. The lone detective left is Bill, Andrea’s husband, who lacks experience solving murders. This time (believe it or not) Hannah’s nosiness is encouraged. Lonnie’s fuzzy memory, though, causes some problems. Hannah zips around town in her cookie truck asking questions, dispensing cookies, and searching for clues. With help from family and friends, Hannah pieces together the clues and identifies the killer. Readers will have no problem solving this whodunit before the reveal. The story proceeds in a unique manner for cozy mysteries that was a nice change of pace, but I would not want too often. I know that Hannah needs to recover from what happened with Ross, but I believe it is time for her to decide between Mike and Norman (my pick is Mike). When A Hannah Swensen Mystery series ends (it is inevitable), I hope Joanne Fluke starts a new cozy mystery series. Coconut Layer Cake Murder is a light, feel good story firm friends, mouthwatering meals, a vital vacation, scrumptious cookies, and a busy baker.
|Fruity Pebble Pudding Cookies (I bet Hannah has made them)
Coconut Layer Cake Murder can be found on Amazon* (as well as other major booksellers). Christmas Cupcake Murder is the next A Hannah Swensen Mystery which comes out on September 29, 2020. Thank you for stopping by today and reading my review. I am featuring Journaled to Death by Heather Redmond tomorrow. It is the debut of A Journaling Mystery series. I hope you have a luminous day. Take care and Happy Reading!
The Avid Reader
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