Murder Gone A-Rye (A Baker's Treat Mystery)
by Nancy J. Parra
Cover Artist: Patricia Castelan
Review by Sherry Lilley
Berkley Mass Market Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9780425252444
Date: 06 May 2014 List Price $7.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK
Toni Holmes is happy running her gluten-free bakery in Oiltop, Kansas. She's even entered a float in the annual Homer Everett parade, which takes place every Thanksgiving in honor of a hometown hero and former mayor. (FYI, it is possible to have too many paper tissue flowers on a float.) But when her grandmother is questioned for murder, Toni has to find the truth.
Yes, Toni is still living the "no dating" life, although two very attractive, eligible men are waiting for her to drop that rule. And both of them are more willing to help her look into the murder of Lois Striker, her grandmother's long-time least favorite person. Well, maybe not willing to help, but at least willing to do what they can to keep Toni, and, by extension, Grandma, safe.
In between baking delectable gluten free treats and working on her parade float, Toni and Grandma, a former investigative journalist, start looking for the murderer. Somehow, it must be connected to the town's hero, Homer Everett. The parade is in his honor, Grandma was investigating an old scandal that involved Homer Everett in some way, and Lois was intimately involved with him back in the day. How intimately? Well, now, that's the question. And what about the people involved in the famous, or infamous, scandal? Champ, Homer's best friend and the person who told the world about Homer's heroism in battle, left town after that bit of scandal never to be heard from again. Could Lois's murder be a result of that long-ago scandal?
So what if the scooter tracks at the murder scene match the tires on Grandma's scooter. It's a public park, and Grandma has been all over the park. The police had no right to confiscate the scooter. Well, okay, maybe Grandma is hazardous to the public when she's racing around on the scooter, but that's no reason to confiscate it.
This is a delightful book. The characters are well-drawn, entertaining, and for the most part, could be people you know and interact with on a daily basis. The mystery remained a mystery almost to the very end, and yet when it was revealed, it made sense.