by Gail Oust
My Review: This is a new author to me and obviously, the first book I have read in this series. I was able to follow the story with no problem, but would like to go back and read the earlier books to get some background on the characters.
Piper Prescott and best friend, Reba Mae, Live in Brandywine Creek. They are a fun pair of BFFs who get themselves involved in things that can cause problems. When the local realtor is found naked and dead in the fishing pond on the property of police chief Wyatt McBride, he is obviously the main suspect, especially when there are rumours that they had a relationship. Piper’s ex-husband has a hate on for Wyatt and working with his father-in-law, get him suspended. Piper has feelings for Wyatt and she is determined to find out who the real murderer is, that is once the interim chief declares it a homicide. Piper’s shop, Spice It Up, seems to be the center of town gossip similar to the coffee shops in other cozies.
I enjoyed the humor in this story, especially between Piper and Reba Mae. Piper’s children are growing up and require their mother’s patience, help, and understanding more than ever. This adds some family drama to the story. When Piper’s home is broken into and trashed, you know that she had inadvertently stumbled upon something to expose the killer. I figured out what had happened and had a sneaking suspicion who the murderer was before it was revealed. This is a fun cozy and of course, it has recipes included. I am looking forward to seeing where Piper and Wyatt’s relationship is going to go. If you enjoy a cozy mystery, pick this one up and enjoy. The publisher generously provided me with a copy of this book via Netgalley.
Synopsis: Piper Prescott and Police Chief Wyatt McBride might have gotten off on the wrong foot but, over the past year, their interactions have evolved into a friendship of sorts. And when the body of Shirley Randolph is found floating in a fishing hole, their relationship reaches entirely new territory.
Shirley, the town’s Realtor of the Year, was also Wyatt’s suspected romantic interest, and now the residents of Brandywine Creek are speculating that Wyatt is responsible for her death. As the town council moves to suspend the handsome lawman, Piper springs into action to save his reputation and possibly his freedom. She enlists the aid of her BFF, Reba Mae Johnson, along with Wyatt himself, to help solve the puzzle and find Shirley’s real killer.
Pointing them toward high-powered real estate tactics and possible affairs, the investigation soon becomes personal when Piper’s shop, Spice It Up!, is burglarized, and she’s forced off the road late one night, narrowly escaping serious injury. Realizing that she must be close to uncovering the truth, and that the evidence against Wyatt is no longer circumstantial, Piper resorts to drastic measures to prevent a grave miscarriage of justice.