dinsdag 21 september 2010

Joanne Pence - Bell, cook and candle

The 9th book in the Angie Amalfi mystery series.

Bell, cook and candle

For once Angie Amalfi’s newest culinary venture, “Comical Cakes”, seems to be a roaring success! There’s nothing funny however, about her homicide detective boyfriend Paavo Smith’s latest case. Paavo’s investigating a series of baffling murders that may be rooted in satanic ritual. And when Angie is called upon to deliver a humorous confection to the mysterious owner of a decadent after-hours goth club, the inquisitive gourmet baker suddenly finds herself up to her neck in the demonc business. It gets harder to focus on pastry alone when strange “accidents” and desecrations to her delectable, fresh-baked creations begin occurring with frightening regularity. And if Angie can’t help Paavo track down a maniacal serial killer with an obsessively unhealthy interest in her, she might end up as devil’s food of a different kind.

Almost accidental, Angie stumbled upon a new business venture. Baking and designing comical cakes for special occasions. At first she has her friend Conny to help her with baking and delivering and serving, but after a fight, she has to find other help.

So when a young woman helps her run off a scary old man who warns her off danger, and tells her she is a pastry chef looking for work, Angie jumps at the opportunity.

Paavo though is not so happy with that. What does she know about this woman? And when a few days later, she also hires a gothic looking young men to help with the deliveries, he is even more worried. So he tries to find out their backgrounds, and doesn’t get anywhere with the mans. He doesn’t exist! But Angie just gets mad at him when the tries to get her to sack them, so he has to give up. Angie is so busy with her new company, and tired at the end of the day, she is not paying much attention to Paavo and his needs to be alone with her. Paavo keeps trying to find a way to propose to Angie, somewhere romantic and memorable. But there is always something spoiling the moment.

He also has no important cases to work on at the moment, to keep him occupied and distracted. His two colleagues are working on some ritual murder, and they think they have caught the culprit, the same man who was aggravating Angie the other day! But somehow Paavo doesn’t believe it. He sounds like a lunatic, talking about evil beings and demons, and that he is the only one capable of fighting them. Warnings about the Dark Queen who will be the next victim gives Paavo the chills? Could he mean Angie?

But when his boss finds out Paavo is messing with the case of his colleagues, he is really angry! That case is solved, and has nothing to do with Paavo. But Paavo just isn’t convinced they caught the killer. Especially when another woman is found murdered the same way …

I liked this book, read it in record time. I did miss the one before this one, which is really a miss, as the happenings in there are mentioned in this one, and I am very curious about that. Finally Angie has found a business that is working and that she is good at. But she doesn’t want it at the loss of her best friend, and not being able to spend time with Paavo! Even when they are together, she is too tired to enjoy it.

A nice book in this series, that is really growing on me.

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