Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Cakes of Wrath

The Cakes of Wrath (Piece of Cake Mystery, #4) 

This is the first book that I have read by Jacklyn Brady and I picked it up initially due to the title. I found the title quirky and fun since it is a play on the title "The Grapes of Wrath". It also has some recipes at the back of the book. which I loved since I am also an avid baker. I was also intrigued by the story premise: Rita, the owner of Zydeco Cakes, almost gets run over by a van right after the business town meeting, but is saved by the local motorcycle shop owner Moose. Was the van aiming for her or was it a case of mistaken identity? When the wife of Moose is found dead a couple of days later, it looks like there is more to the hit and run. Rita takes it into her own hands when a detective comes round accusing her of killing Moose's wife. Will she be able to figure out who the murderer is before she is arrested or someone else gets killed?

In regards to the story in terms of writing, I felt it was an average read. This book is number four of the "Piece of Cake Mystery" series, so the characters have probably already been well established in the previous mysteries. However, I will say that the characters all seem to be interesting and have wonderful little idiosyncrasies. I wish I would have started at the beginning  of the series though to get a better feel for the main character Rita and her life in New Orleans as the owner of Zydeco Cakes. The tension between her mother-in-law and her is very apparent, but I am now curious as to what the back story of these two is.

I would also like to applaud Brady for sticking with the first person point of view throughout the entire book. It is not easy to do, especially for longer pieces. If it were me, I would struggle with trying to show parts of the story through the eyes of the other characters, which you cannot do with first person. This book does not suffer by having this limited point of view and I found that the story still moved very smoothly from chapter to chapter.

The main problem that I had with this book was how many tangents the main storyline had. At times it felt like there was a little too much going on, especially with the addition of Edie's and Pearl Lee's passages. But I will say that it helped to flesh out Rita's character in terms of her humanity for me, so I tried to let it slide. There may have also been a little too much misdirection with regards to the murderer itself. Sadly, I had a suspicion as to who the killer was early on and was right on the money. Having said that though, I am not easily misled or fooled and thought that Brady did do an okay job at trying to keep the identity hidden until the very end.

Overall, it was a pleasant read and I enjoyed it. If I have the time, I might even go back and start at the beginning some day. For the moment however, I think I will move on to the next book in my "To Be Read" list. If you enjoy mysteries that are part of a series and are easy reads, then you will most likely like this book. However, if you need a little more of darker, richer mystery that keeps you guessing the whole time, then you may not like this book.

Rating: 2.5 out of 5

I got this book from my local library; I was not asked to do a review of this book.

 (Image was taken from Good Reads).

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