Sunday, October 13, 2013

Lemon Tart, Josi Kilpack

Lemon Tart is a culinary murder mystery. This means that the main character is obsessed with baking and share's her recipes with you throughout the book. This is definitely a plus when she describes the carrot cookie with orange glaze so well you can almost taste them, and really WANT to taste them, and there you go, at the end of the chapter, the recipe! So I liked that.

Total, I'd probably give it 3.5/5 stars. Sadie, the main character and voice of narration is in her mid-fifties, a widow with 2 grown children-both adopted, although you only meet her daughter Breanna, you know that Shawn was a rather picky eater based on her recipe notes. Sadie's newer younger friend Anne Lemmon was found murdered outside her home and her toddler son missing. Sadie just can't seem to keep her nose out of things-if you've ever watched the show, Castle, she's 100 times more annoying that he is and doesn't have any connections to let her be in on this even though she DOES offer some helpful tips to the detectives working the case. She jumps to conclusions and in real life would definitely have been arrested only a few chapters in just for interfering with an investigation. I found myself annoyed with Sadie a LOT of the time. But I think that's because Josi Kilpack describes her so well, we all know someone in our life who cares very much about how they look, how they're perceived, what's going on, mother hen, can't pass up any gossip-especially if it's in the name of "good". While Sadie goes through many different assumptions of what is going on, there are some twists I wasn't really expecting, but I though they were a little wild and when things finally wound down to "who dunnit" I wasn't really at all surprised. Evidently this is a continuing series, which seems a little funny because really, how many random murders can show up in a "normal" person's life? Perhaps I'm just not as familiar with this genre and what's generally expected for an audience for the genre.

It was entertaining, even though some parts were fantastical (as well as the things that happen in the TV shows we love, like Castle), there was definitely a lot of humor. For instance, Sadie ends up sneaking around where she doesn't belong-twice in the same day at different locations-and both times ends up hiding under a bed in order to avoid being caught. Can you imagine a mid-fifties woman hiding under a bed? Yeah, that definitely made me laugh (and roll my eyes). But I think that's what makes it eye rolling funny-she's playing detective the way Nancy Drew did, but she's not young and glamorous.

And I did come away with a wonderful mantra. Sadie states that her metabolism isn't what it used to be and if she wanted to maintain any semblance of her figure, she had to be careful about things. But she didn't believe in depriving herself of anything either, so her personal rule was "Eat what you want, but not all of it." Which meant that if she was craving brownies, she'd make a pan of brownies, set some aside for herself and then take the rest to a friend or neighbor. Same with rich dinners, such as lasagna. I thought those were definitely good words to live by!

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