cover image Murder Most Fowl

Murder Most Fowl

Edith Maxwell. Kensington, $25 (304p) ISBN 978-1-4967-0025-4

A contentious town hall meeting in Westbury, Mass., about the projected use of a particular piece of land kicks off Maxwell’s entertaining fourth Local Foods mystery (after 2015’s Farmed and Dangerous). Some want affordable housing, others would prefer sports fields, and a third contingent seeks to have the land remain undeveloped. Chicken farmer Wayne Laitinen speaks in favor of housing. Organic farmer Cam Flaherty tables the discussion for another day after observing that opinions are divided. When Wayne is found dead at his breakfast table the next morning, Cam and her boyfriend, State Police Det. Pete Pappas, investigate. Wayne had his share of enemies, including members of a local animal rights activist group who vandalized his chicken house. Wayne also was on bad terms with neighbor Judith Patterson and with a former high school friend, Paul Underwood, so there’s no shortage of suspects in what turns into a murder case. Though a rushed ending detracts somewhat, cozy fans will still enjoy spending time with Cam and friends. Agent: John Talbot, Talbot Fortune Agency. (June)