Book Review: Strawberry Shortcake Murder by Joanne Fluke

Strawberry Shortcake Murder
Joanne Fluke
Kensington, 2001
ISBN 1575667215
Mass Market Paperback

Hannah Swensen, cookie baker extraordinaire, is once again on the snoop.  This time, she’s after the murderer of the husband of a friend, struck down right after his judging duty at a dessert bake-off — and he’s literally facedown in Hannah’s own strawberry shortcake. Only Hannah and a few others know just how nasty-tempered this man was and she’s determined to track down the killer before the police decide the wife is the culprit.  In the meantime, a most annoying reporter is behaving strangely and the list of suspects is growing.

In Hannah’s second adventure, Joanne Fluke brings us another winner, a cozy in the truest sense, complete with the wonderful cat, Moishe. This time, Hannah and her sister, Andrea, have resolved their long-standing rivalry and Andrea joins in the sleuthing with enthusiasm. The two of them make quite a team and the reader has the pleasure of watching the sisters discover surprising things about each other. And the men in Hannah’s life?  Well, suffice it to say that batty Moishe is the only one not causing problems of one sort or another.

Strawberry Shortcake Murder is every bit as enjoyable as Hannah’s first story, Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder, and Ms. Fluke shows us once again that she is very adept at creating a traditional mystery, replete with small-town characters, multiple bodies and suspects, a little romance and a cat with personality, not to mention some wonderful recipes. If the
author keeps this up, I’ll collapse from overeating but at least I’ll be reading a good book while I stuff myself!

Reviewed by Lelia Taylor, 2002.  Slightly revised 2010.
Review first published on murderexpress.net in 2002.

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