Isn't it great when a book connects more than one of your passions? If a story has intrigue and romance, I like it, but when a story manages to have both intrigue and romance, plus incorporates cooking or a dog, it has reach my trifecta of perfection. I have read my fair share of cozy mysteries that incorporate some of these qualities, and they are great reads during the Fall months. There's something so comforting about curling up on a chair with a soft blanket, a hot drink, and a cozy mystery. You know there will be some type of crime that will be resolved, but you also know that it will never get too gruesome and in the end they will live happily until the next adventure.
Of Spice and Men by Sara Fox is a cozy mystery that meets my trifecta of perfection. It is the third book in the Pancake House Mystery Series. Marley McKinney owner of the Flip Side Pancake House is trying to solve a mystery that involves a film crew, and famous actors filming a horror film in the town of Wildwood Cove. Christine, the head makeup actress of the film has been seen arguing with a few members of the cast by Marley and then right before they are about to meet for a tour, Christine is murdered. Marley is set on finding out who the killer is, to make matters worst, the main suspect; Alyssa Jayde, use to date Marley's boyfriend.
I enjoyed this story and was able to follow the dynamics of the characters without having read the previous Pancake House Mystery books. It is a fun, light read, and at the end of the book there are a few recipes from treats mentioned in the story. Marley's character seems to be that classic female sleuth, who takes advantage of living in a small town and gets herself involved in police activity more than she should. I liked that even though she was clearly getting herself into things she should not, she was never of the mentality that she had to do things by herself, she accepted help from other and always had a friend who wanted to join her in her escapades.
I also really enjoyed the ambience of the small town, the community of Wildwood Cove was cute. Some characters were more interesting than others, specially when it came to the mystery and murder. Christine's murderer is a real mystery, I mean it's a bit surprising and it was a little left field for me. I was not expecting the back story or motive for the murder of Christine. Which I guess is both good and bad. It kept me guessing and was a fun read.
If you enjoy cozy mysteries and are looking for a new female sleuth that also enjoys cooking, this is a series to pick up. I can't wait to try some of the recipes.
*I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.*