cover image Three Blonde Mice

Three Blonde Mice

Jane Heller. Diversion, $13.99 trade paper (268p) ISBN 978-1-68230-285-9

Somebody wants to kill famed farm-to-table chef Jason Hill, but the titular blonds%E2%80%9440-something Elaine Zimmerman and her two best friends, Pat and Jackie, all on a "haycation" at a Cultivate Our Bounty week in Connecticut%E2%80%94are on the case in this tepid sequel to Princess Charming. Heller offers plenty of red herrings and a decent amount of laughs at present-day foodie culture, but there's a dull edge to the overly broad humor as the three women attempt to ferret out which of their fellow agritourists wants to add the arrogant chef's murder to the menu. Might it be the Jason Hill groupie, tired of being ignored by the object of her adoration? Perhaps it is the handsome Palm Beach lawyer wooing Elaine after her breakup with her ex, who shows up to win her back, or one of the sustainable farming%E2%80%93obsessed husband-and-wife team. The ever-wry Elaine is a finely honed narrator, but for much of the story, malapropism-prone Pat and horny, soused Jackie walk around in a fog. Agent: Ellen Levine, Trident Media Group. (Aug.)