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The Butter Did It

A Gastronomic Tale of Love and Murder
Narrated by: Susan O’Malley
Length: 9 hrs and 8 mins
3.5 out of 5 stars (32 ratings)
This title is included in Audible Escape

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Publisher's Summary

The Washington Post’s award-winning former food writer, Phyllis Richman, has cooked up a tempting tale of mousse, mayhem, and murder: a tautly woven insider’s look at the food and newspaper worlds.

Laurence Levain was a culinary superstar: the high-profile owner and chef of Chez Laurence, an internationally renowned restaurant in Washington, D.C. When Levain collapses in his clogs the night before a star-studded black-tie benefit dinner, all bets are on his soaring cholesterol level.

But one person has her doubts: Chas Wheatley, the Washington Examiner's saber-penned restaurant critic. Still carrying a torch for Levain after an affair they had years before, she breaks out all her investigative resources to find the culprit. But the big-city newspaper and food communities are deadly competitive.

©1997 Phyllis Richman (P)1997 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

“[A] delectable tale of manslaughter, edibles and romance….Susan O'Mally's wry narration adds the appropriate amount of seasoning to this tale….This is a yarn worth savoring.” ( AudioFile)
“A terrific and stylish first mystery by the Washington Post's restaurant critic….How can you not love a writer who includes a reference to the wry and passionate folksinging McGarrigle sisters? Four stars for a stunning debut.” ( Booklist)

What members say

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Dale
  • Houston, TX, United States
  • 12-29-10

Phyllis Richman did it!!!

I enjoyed reading Phyllis Richman's first murder mystery. The plot to "The Butter Did It" is well constructed and it has plenty of suspects. You learn a lot about the main character, food critic Chas Wheatley. She is not perfect, which is something I like. All of the characters are easy to care about, and realistic. I thought I had the murder solved but was wrong. There were plenty of suspects and a lot of twists and turns. The descriptions of the meals and restaurants she reviewed made me want to find a food critic to befriend. I will definitely be reading the next two books in the series.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

More Please

Although the food described is way out of my league, the writing is quick; the twists and turns unexpected and the personal reflections right on.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

Fair - characters lost out to food detail

Disappointing - Too much time spent describing elaborate French food to the point of detracting from the characters and the story. I prefer Hannah Swenson (Fluke) and Goldy Bear (Davidson) for food related mysteries.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

enjoyable listen

i wish the cover ... would do the story more justice ... this book or listen deserves a better cover!! such a great listen ... this narrator ... nice on the ears ... and such an easy time does pass ...doing chores listening away and was sad to see it end ... i love a good mystery. mystery read (listen) with food. such a fan ... hope to find more by Phyllis soon enough!

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars

Not cozy enough

I can't critique the performance or story fairly as I only listened to 48 minutes. The story was interesting and I wanted to know what happened but there was too much cursing and sexual talk in the first hour for my liking.