If You Can't Stand the Heat: Poppy Markham, Culinary Cop

Robin Allen. Midnight Ink (www.midnightinkbooks.com), $14.95 trade paper (288p) ISBN 978-0-7387-2607-6
In Allen's red-hot saucy debut, flamboyant French chef √Čvariste Bontecou prepares to help relaunch Markham's Bar & Grill as Markham's Grille & Cocktails in Austin, Tex. Too bad health inspector Poppy Markham, the daughter of Mitch Markham, the restaurant's founder, discovers Bontecou stabbed to death by the Dumpster before opening night is over. When the knife turns out to belong to Ursula York, Poppy's bitchy stepsister and the cafe's other (and very jealous) top chef, Poppy, though she's not Ursula's number one fan, sets out to clear her stepsister's name. Poppy must summon all of her investigative chops to sniff out a most unsavory killer while worrying about her ill dad and Mitch's controlling wife, Nina. Readers will want to see more of this laid-back Austin-style snoop, though hopefully next time she'll interact with more law enforcement officials. (May)
Reviewed on: 03/14/2011
Release date: 05/01/2011
Hardcover - 375 pages - 978-1-4104-3953-6
Hardcover - 379 pages - 978-1-4458-6039-8
Open Ebook - 288 pages - 978-0-7387-3020-2
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