By Isis Crawford
Copyright February 2012
Publisher Kensington Publishing
Gastronomical dream team Bernie and Libby Simmons wade into a Celtic knot of malice and mayhem when a St. Patrick’s celebration goes terribly wrong…
To most of the people of little Longely, New York, St. Paddy’s Day means good food, great music, and plenty of Guinness. But when the lifeless body of Mike Sweeney floats to the top of a vat of green beer, it looks like the luck o’ the Irish has just run out.
Unfortunately for the Simmons sisters, the number one suspect is related to one of their very best catering customers, the pampered and powerful Bree Nottingham. When Bree visits A Little Taste of Heaven to beseech them to clear her nephew’s name, they just can’t say no.
But the more information Bernie and Libby stir up, the more Duncan Nottingham looks like a killer. Known for his hot temper and love of the drink, Duncan and the deceased were both part of the Corned Beef and Cabbage Club, a group with more buried history than the Emerald Isle. And each member—especially Duncan—had a motive to sing Sweeney his last Irish lullaby. A motive they don’t want anyone revealing.
For Bernie and Libby, the situation is deadly and in danger of boiling over. And they can’t count on good old Saint Pat to drive out the snake in their midst…they’ll have to do it themselves, before a murderer strikes again.
The Dynamic Duo of Bernie and Libby Simmons are well known in their hometown of Little Longley, New York. It was a little after 9 am one morning and Bernie and Libby were working in their shop kitchen rolling out pie dough for sale and special orders. They were thinking how quiet things had been lately with no crimes to get involved in and even things in the shop were running smoothly. Too bad this wasn’t going to last.
When Bernie’s cell phone rang and she looked at the caller ID she was surprised when the call was from her boyfriend Brandon. Brandon should have been in bed already after working the late shift at RJ’s a local bar. With no explanations he insists that the sisters come and meet him at the back of the bar. When they arrive he explains that he found a dead body in the barrel of green beer that had been ordered for the St. Patrick’s Day Celebration.
The body is identified as Mike Sweeney, a member of the Corned Beef and Cabbage Club. Brandon told them a story about the past evenings events featuring Mike Sweeney being forcibly removed from the premises after he attempted to crack the barrel and “taste” the beer.
Bree Nottingham, the local bigwig in the real estate business asks them to meet with her in their apartment. She needs to talk to them. Her nephew Duncan (a member of the Corned Beef and Cabbage Club) is arrested for the murder and she offers to pay for their help. All the evidence found points to Duncan being the guilty party and Bree says she just knows he’s innocent. She tells them that she wants to hire them to investigate the case and prove his innocence. They are shocked when she hands them a check for a five figure amount, and finally agree to help her.
It appears that at every turn the Dynamic Duo are going to be hitting their heads against a wall as they find nothing that will help Duncan’s case.
This mystery is well written, and the characters are all three dimensional. Even the peripheral people they run into appear to be there for specific reasons and the story just flows so smoothly you’ll be surprised to find yourself at the end of the book and the truth will out.
FTC Full Disclosure: I received an ARC of this book from the publishers who asked only for a fair and impartial review.