Fiber & Brimstone

Laura Childs, Berkley Prime Crime, $24.95 (336p) ISBN 978-0-425-23674-1
Halloween season in a revitalized, post-Katrina New Orleans provides the backdrop for Childs's colorful, briskly plotted eighth scrapbooking mystery (after 2009's Tragic Magic). When Brett Fowler, a Big Easy Ponzi schemer, gets fatally gored by the horns of a Minotaur head for the French Quarter's Monsters and Mayhem Torchlight Parade, suspicion falls on art appraiser Jekyl Hardy, the float designer who created the mythical beast's head. Jekyl's old friends and fellow float designers, Carmela Bertrand, the proprietor of Memory Mine, "a cozy little scrapbook shop," and Ava Gruiex, of Juju Voodoo, determine to clear his name. Catching the real killer is a job, of course, for NOPD Lt. Edgar Babcock, Carmela's main squeeze, but the detecting chops of artsy Carmela and her saucy sidekick, Ava, totally steal his thunder. Scrapbooking tips and recipes for dishes like candied fruit banana bread and Dr. Pepper tickle-your-ribs spareribs round out a volume sure to please cozy fans. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 08/02/2010
Release date: 10/01/2010
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