From peacekeeper to beekeeper…
After an injury forced her to leave the police department, Abigail Mackenzie started a second career as a farmer. Raising chickens, harvesting honey from her bee colony, and growing heirloom vegetables on her farmette in the beautiful Bay Area town of Las Flores, Abby has embraced all the benefits of a peaceful life.
But when she attempts to deliver her trademark honey to local pastry chef Jean-Louis Bonheur and finds him dead in his shop, her old investigative instincts kick in. After the coroner rules the death a suicide, the chef’s handsome French-Canadian brother insists on hiring Abby to find out who really killed Jean-Louis.
With the patience of a farmer and the industriousness of a bee, Abby sorts through a swarm of suspects, including the chef’s landlord, his protégé, an eccentric homeless woman, loan sharks, and a brawny biker. But as she closes in on the truth, she’ll need more than her beekeeper suit to protect her from a killer’s sting…
Includes farming tips and delicious recipes! (Goodreads)
Abby is a beekeeper and farmer who used to work with the police force. She was injured and left the police department to work with her bees, and try her hand at her farmette. She enjoys the quieter pace and is fascinated with her beekeeping. While making a delivery of honey to a neighborhood pastry chef, Abby finds his body. It appears to be a suicide, but Abby cannot shake the feeling that something is not right with that determination. She knows that the chef had a sharp tongue and at times argued with people and she thinks that this may be a case of murder instead of suicide. When the chef’s brother shows up insisting that his brother did not kill himself, he hires Abby to look into the death. Even though Abby has enough to keep herself busy, Abby knows that once a policeman, always a policeman, and she agrees to investigate.
The characters are well developed and well rounded. I think Abby is a tough but fair heroine and I really liked the fact that she is an ex-policemen. To me that made the story of her looking into the death much more believable. And the fact that she still has some friends on the force to get information added even more believability. She has a harder side to her personality that serves her well in her investigating. But she also has a softer side that served her well in her beekeeping and farming career. And the fact that she took in the chef’s dog, Sugar, and bonded so well with her made me like her even more.
The writing style flows smoothly and the book is an easy read. The mystery is carried on throughout the entire book and there are enough twists and turns to keep even the most avid mystery fan guessing. I like there is the beginnings of a romance for Abby and that it is progressing slowly. I also enjoyed the information contained within the book, from tips for beekeeping and gardening to delicious sounding recipes.
I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a well crafted cozy mystery. I think this book is a good start to a new series and I look forward to reading the next one when it is released.
I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for a honest review. I would like to thank NetGalley and Kensington Press for the opportunity to read and review this book.