Caramel Pecan Roll Murder
A Hannah Swensen Mystery #28
Kensington Books, February 2022
Caramel Pecan Roll Murder is the latest book in Joanne Fluke’s series featuring baker Hannah Swensen, owner of The Cookie Jar bakery. It begins when Hannah is asked to help out Sally Laughlin owner, together with her husband Dick, of the Lake Eden Inn. Sally is desperate for help because a fishing tournament is about to be held at the Inn with the fishermen staying there and having all their meals there. Unfortunately, Sally’s dessert chef isn’t available for the week of the tournament due to a family emergency and Sally wants Hannah to stay at the Inn for the week of the tournament and take over the baking which Hannah agrees to do with the help of her sister Andrea.
The tournament is in full swing and is going well except for the behavior of the fishing pro, Sonny Bowman, the star of the tournament sponsor’s televised fishing show. Sonny it seems drinks far too much and has a habit of hitting on the women present, most of whom are wives of the fishermen, which does not go over well with their husbands.
Sonny’s behavior aside, the tournament is going well until a dead body turns up. Of course, Mike and Lonnie, the police department’s detectives are investigating but, no surprise to regular readers of this series, Hannah, an amateur sleuth, also begins her investigation. One thing readers can always count on is that Hannah will get involved in murder investigations, aided and abetted by her family and friends! In fact, one of the things I find amusing about this series is how she gets involved in the investigations on the thinnest possible pretext!
I liked this book. It’s filled with several of the usual characters and while the solution to the murder makes sense, it isn’t glaringly obvious. I also liked the recipes which, as usual, I am sure I will make someday – but probably won’t. I recommend this book. It is a fun read and a worthy addition to the series.
Reviewed by Melinda Drew, February 2022.