Cookie Dough or Die (Cookie Cutter Shop Mystery #1) by Virginia Lowell
After Olivia Greyson’s divorce to a renowned surgeon, she moved home to Chatterley Heights, Maryland. While she was trying to figure out what to do next with her life Olivia was befriended by Clarisse Chamberlain, entrepreneur and businesswoman, who encourages her to buy the historic Gingerbread House and follow her dream to open a cookie shop.
Since then she and her best friend Maddie have been running the shop together. Olivia runs the numbers and planning; while Maddie is the creative one who is in charge of the baking and making fantastical creations.
Olivia is catching up on her beauty rest when she hears something downstairs. It’s not a robber, but Maddie coming over to create something fun and wonderful for Spring. After her, the hunky Sheriff Del comes with a a sad message for Olivia; Clarisse was found dead, and it looks like suicide.
Olivia knows that Clarisse would never kill herself and sets off to discover who murdered her.
The suspect list is long and complicated. There are her two dueling sons; Hugh and Edward; that have always wanted to inherit the full power of the business. Could they have killed her for the inheritance? Before one was written out of the will?
Tammy, Olivia’s old best friend from elementary school, also has a strong motive. She has been in love with Hugh for as long as she can remember. They dated at one time, but Hugh was distracted by another, Jasmine, and Clarisse was set against Tammy from that day on. Even when Jasmine left the picture, Clarisse hated any girl that wanted Hugh. Could Tammy have killed Clarisse in order to marry Hugh?
And what of Jasmine who just mysteriously disappeared? Is she somehow involved with this?
When a local postman hints that he knew Clarisse received some information from a private detective; he ends up on the hit list.
It turns out he was poisoned by one of Olivia and Maddie’s cookies.
Now it is clear that they are the next target. Can Olivia solve the murder before she is killed too?
Thoughts After Reading:
I didn’t really care for this book. I was a bit disappointed too, as I waited three months for the book to come in from a sister library to read but it wasn’t as good.
The mystery itself was good, but the way it was carried out was seriously lacking.
The story was okay except there is a lot of information about the characters that we aren’t given which make it a bit confusing. For a first book, it is best to not confuse the reader.
I didn’t like the mom character as felt she was far too cliché and boring.
A character like this again?!
The end wasn’t all that good either. The mystery was intriguing, but the resolution was too quickly wrapped up. It was very murky mysterious, and then all of a sudden crystal clear. I felt they need more leeway time, steps leading it up to the resolution.
It was also weird to have a mystery book that features dogs instead of cats. I’m not against dogs or anything, I like them too. But cats and mysteries just seem to go hand in hand. Having a mystery book without one and a dog instead is just so unusual. After all, cats are just so amazing.
For more mysteries involving a cookie shop, go to Cream Puff Murder
For more Southern mysteries, go to Bloom and Doom
For more suicides as a cover for murder, go to Murder and Other Unnatural Disasters
For more death by poison food, go to A Pinch of Poison
For more Charles Dickens quotes, go to Gorgonzola Cream Cheese Log
For more mystery reviews, go to Sleeping Beauty