Friday, February 28, 2014

Review: Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder by Joanne Fluke

Title: Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder (A Hannah Swensen Mystery #1)
Author: Joanne Fluke
Rating: ***
ISBN: 0758213506
Genre: Cozy Mystery - Adult - Crime - Cooking - Mystery
Source: Apple App Store Free Book of the Week

Summary: From Goodreads: "Hannah Swensen already has her hands full, between dodging her mother's attempts to marry her off, and running Lake Eden, Minnesota's most popular bakery, The Cookie Jar. But when the Cozy Cow Dairy's beloved delivery man is found murdered behind Hannah's bakery with her famous Chocolate Chip Crunchies scattered around him, Hannah sets out to track down a killer. The more Hannah snoops, the more suspects turn up. This is one murder that's starting to leave a very bad taste in Hannah's mouth, and if she doesn't watch her back, her sweet life may get burned to a crisp."

Thoughts: This book was a very light and cozy read. I discovered it because it was iBook's free eBook of the week one week during February. I read it in two or three small parts of evenings before bed, and thought it was a perfect before bed read because (even though there were elements of mystery) it wasn't so well written or so engaging that I had trouble setting it down when I got tired. However, I did enjoy it. Hannah is a no-fuss, friendly, and relate-able heroine. She had a lot of advantages going for her new-found sleuthing skills because of the small town she lives in and her prior relationships to most of the people in the book.

The small town atmosphere was realistic and relate-able. I think what I liked about this book is that it didn't pretend to be something it wasn't. It wasn't a scary mystery, or one with a shocker ending. Hannah and her lifestyle were simple and cozy, and it contained all of the amusing, cheesy moments you might hope for due to the cover.

I would say that this book is perfect for airplane flights or if you're looking for something that you can enjoy in a weekend. If you are looking for a great mystery or hugely suspenseful elements, or even really great writing, this would not be the mystery novel for you.

OH! And there are several recipes contained within the novel so that you can bake all of the goodies that Hannah talks about serving at her bakery, The Cookie Jar.

Discussion Questions: (Please note, though I do my best to keep spoilers out of my reviews, discussion questions are by nature for people who have read the book and may contain spoilers. Read them at your own risk! Also, if you are responding to one of the discussion questions in the comments below, please put SPOILERS at the beginning of any portions of your comment that might ruin the book for other interested parties. Thank you!)

- What did you think of Hannah's relationship with her mother? Do you think Hannah handled it well or could she have been doing anything better/differently? Did her mother's desperation for Hannah to get married seem odd to anyone else?

- What did you think of Hannah's romantic "love triangle" situation that developed towards the end of the book? Too unrealistic? Too impractical? Is she getting in over her head?

What books are you all reading right now? Any cozy mysteries I should be looking in to?

- Faye

1 comment:

  1. Ha love this title! It sounds like a really fun book too and I love small town settings! I can totally relate since I was raised in one. I also like how real it sounds - not trying to be something it's not like you said. Def. a good rainy Sunday read! :)