cover image The Garden Club Murder

The Garden Club Murder

Amy Patricia Meade. Severn, $28.99 (208p) ISBN 978-0-7278-8944-7

Meade’s appealing sequel to Cookin’ the Books takes caterer Letitia “Tish” Tarragon, who owns a café in Hobson Glen, Va., and Tish’s occasional assistant, weatherman Julian “Jules” Jefferson Davis, to the Coleton Creek Sixty-Plus Community to prepare for the annual garden club luncheon. While touring the top contenders for the prize for best garden, Tish and Jules discover the body of wealthy retiree Sloane Shackleford, who has won the event for the last five years, his head bashed in with a garden spade. Would someone kill to win a gardening competition? Nathan and Mariette Knobloch, Coleton Creek’s developers, seem to think so and are adamant about cancelling the proceedings. But popular opinion dictates that the garden show must go on. Tish insists that she will not investigate; however, her sympathetic listening skills uncover more potential motives and enough suspects to keep the novel zipping along at a good clip. Happily, Meade keeps the cute puns to a minimum this outing. Cozy fans will have fun. [em]Agent: Jessica Faust, BookEnds Literary. (Sept.) [/em]