Series: Coffeehouse Mystery #3
Published by Berkley Publishing Group on August 2nd 2005
Number of Pages: 243
Genres: Cozy Mystery
Purchase: At Amazon
It's Fashion Week in New York City -- and Clare's shop, the historic Village Blend, is the location of a prestigious insider's party for loyal customer and iconic designer Lottie Harmon, who is about to launch a collection of coffee-inspired accessories aptly named Java Jewelry. But the event, which is attended by the city's most zealous fashionistas, goes terribly wrong when a customer is poisoned and dies from cyanide in his latte. A barista, who coincidentally was recently dumped by the victim, is arrested and charged with murder. But Clare knows in her heart that her employee is innocent and begins to investigate the people surrounding the enigmatic Lottie Harmon. When Clare uncovers a scheme to blackmail one of Lottie's business partners and then that partner suddenly turns up dead, she knows that there is trouble brewing.
As per usual, I didn’t guess who the killer was right away. Unlike the last 2 books however, I did actually figure out who had done it! But not until around 90-92%. So that may not count…
There was still a lot of coffee talk and explanations of drinks and how coffee is processed. It was interesting to me even though I don’t like coffee. (Which I know is crazy since I’m already 3 books into the series!) I loved how Madame had a part in the sleuthing in this book, and she acted all giddy like a teenager at one point. Quinn wasn’t in this one much sadly, instead we got 2 new cops, Starksy and Hut. Who were Bad Cop and Worse Cop as they’re described in the book.
Clare has a habit of describing everything she sees. And normally that would bother me, because sometimes she can go on for pages before getting to the point. But for some reason it works. It might be because I can relate to being easily distracted. The old joke about talking-talking-talking-oh-look-shiny! etc.
I didn’t like the detour Clare and Matteo’s relationship took in this book, and I also didn’t like the fact that the Joy story-line was never resolved. But other than those two things, I really enjoyed this book. If you haven’t tried this series yet, you should!
The recipes included in this book were: Caramel-Chocolate Latte, Clare’s Foolproof Homemade Caramel-Chocolate Syrup, Cafe Brulee, Clare’s Basic Biscotti, Almond Biscotti, Anise Biscotti, Pistachio Biscotti, Ricciardelli.