It was her cheating Fiancé, Bronson, who drove her from her job as a fashionable and sought after high flying pastry chef. Her tale..Show More »nts, which had so recently earned her the big city prices, were now employed in attempting to start her own small town business. Tess was busy turning her Grandmas old restaurant into an upmarket cake shop. Meanwhile, she was catering a wedding rehearsal meal. This is where it all begins.....
At the wedding venue Tess is lovingly arranging her award winning rocky road brownies, these she had baked at the special request of the bride to be. Along comes the brides' Matron of Honour, the glamorous Valerie who wastes no time in telling Tess that she had advised the bride to employ another fashionable pastry chef, Roscoe Marks. Valerie disparages the brownies saying Roscoe could bake rings around Tess. Not feeling too well disposed towards the vile Valerie, Tess keeps her remarks in check. The next day, the day of the wedding, Tess is assembling the wedding cake when she discovers Valeries' body underneath the table.
For some reason, Tess feels she is the main suspect and fears imminent arrest, this drives her to decide that she, like all the best cozy mystery heroines, must solve this murder herself. This first part of the story is quite slow, a little dull and a little predictable, however, the story soon gathers some momentum and interest is garnered. Pompous Bronson arrives in town, he'd hoped to persuade Tess to return with him, he tells her she is obligated to complete the cakes that were ordered prior to her departure. He also wants her back swearing the other woman meant nothing. Meanwhile, Tess seems to be stirring up the interest of other eligible males, but she is just so busy! There's a little romance, there's jealousy, suspicion, treachery and violence, and yes, there's mystery. All this and throw in a little violence, it makes for a story that does hold ones interest, and, for me at least, holds a couple of surprises.
Of course, this review would be incomplete without mentioning the recipes. I don't much care for recipes in an audiobook, I find they interrupt the smooth flow of the story and would be better if left to a section at the end of the recording. Also, the way a recipe is written, sans prepositions, makes them a cumbersome read. I admire the narrator who can read what sounds like pidgin English, aloud, and with all due seriousness: "two teaspoon cinnamon; one cup sugar", I'm afraid I would be able to resist chucking in an "of"! This book is whispersync ready, so, if you really like the recipes, get the book for reference.
To summarise, I found this a slow starter, but it did rev up the interest levels enough to keep me listening to an enjoyable story.
The Narrator Pamela Almand is a very good narrator, in no time at all I was recognising all the characters, all of whom were portrayed well. She has a pleasant voice which is easy on the ear, both tempo and rythymn of speech were perfect. I liked the way that in the early part of the story, she perfectly captured the slight condescension in Tess', speaking manner, portraying Tess as one who had yet to come to terms with the loss of the social status she had once enjoyed as a super star chef.
This book was gifted to me in return for this, my honest opinion
My review Another enjoyable story from the Sweet Bites Mystery series, our intrepid super-baker solves yet another mystery, but, yes,this time by..Show More » request! It's not as if she is bored, her business is building well, she just can't help herself. Oh where would we Cosy lovers be without such intrepid and nosy women? I love the way the series is developing, getting to know the characters and their back stories, the lure of the small town community, the sheer cosines of it all. That is until the murder!
As the blurb says, the victims' teenaged stepson is being fingered for the heinous crime, teenaged boys being what they are (a mystery, wrapped in an enigma etc. or near enough) Tess proves surprisingly adept at dealing with them, all it takes is food! Who knew? I love a story that hooks my interest quickly, this one certainly did that, what's more, it held my attention, so much so that I was reluctant to break. Tess interests me, she is finding and forming her very own family in order to satisfy her need to belong, so far, it's working very well. For both of us. I enjoy Tess and her "family" and really want to hear more. Of course, we know that the storyline is going to be more than unlikely, but so what? It's a story, it transports us to somewhere else, an enjoyable place, a place to listen and relax. Can't wait to hear more.
Narration I love the voice of Pamela Almand, simple as that. Dulcet tones, that is, sweet, soothing and low, she could read aloud the label of a sauce bottle and I would listen, it is entrancing. Need I say more? Well yes I do, I have to say how well she characterises both male and female, the listener never doubts who is holding forth. Pamela never intrudes upon the story, there is nothing required of the listener other than to enjoy the work of the author, exactly as it should be. I sincerely hope the author never, ever considers another narrator for this series.