Fonduing Fathers (A White House Chef Mystery)
by Julie Hyzy
Cover Artist: Ben Perini
Review by Verna Suit
Berkley Mass Market Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9780425251812
Date: 31 December 2012 List Price $7.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK
White House Executive Chef Olivia Paras visits her mother in Chicago and at last finds out the details of her father's death many years ago. He's buried in Arlington Cemetery and Ollie has always believed he was an honorable man. But what she learns now raises doubts about that. She also learns that he was gunned down on the street, execution style. When she gets back to Washington she starts digging into the past in order to restore her father's good name.
Uncovering old secrets proves hard to do. Mystery still surrounds everything about her dad's death. Former employees of the company where he worked are unwilling to tell her anything. But Ollie has a valuable resource in her significant other, Special Agent Gavin of the Secret Service. With the help of his powerful contacts, she's eventually able to discover the truth. Meanwhile at the White House, Ollie's special friendship with the president's nine-year-old son deepens when he becomes interested in cooking and she gives him lessons. In the end, their relationship proves life-saving.
This 6th in the White House Chef mystery series remains every bit as delightful as the 1st. The White House kitchen setting guarantees interest and enjoyment, as Ollie and her staff go through familiar food prep routines, but for the First Family and their world-class entertaining. It's also nice to follow Ollie's blossoming romance with Gav, which she persists in trying to keep secret.
Being a Washington novel, the book naturally includes politics, but they are not partisan. In this series, political maneuvering concerns the pecking order among members of the White House staff. To this close observer, the security precautions and official Washington workings come across as quite believable. as unlikely as they may sometimes seem.