A Christmas mystery with a host of great recipes

The Candy Cane Caper (Cozy Culinary Mystery Book 13)

By: Josi S. Kilpack

Rating: 5 of 5

When I first started reading this book, I had no idea it was part of a series, let alone the 13th book of that series. It can absolutely be read stand-alone. However, was I read it, I was hooked and will go back and read the rest of the series from the beginning.

This is not a murder mystery. It is solving a theft whodunnit. While I had some idea of who might have been involved, I was surprised by the total resolution.

Sadie Hoffmiller is the sleuth in this book. Her best friend, Mary, is much older (at 94) and is in hospice and not expected to live through Christmas.

Sadie helps Mary decorate her last Christmas tree. Mary is unable to see but get feel her ornaments, which turn out to be antiques that are extremely valuable. When some of the ornaments turn up missing, Sadie decides she must solve the case and get those ornaments back without Mary knowing they were ever gone.

There is a lot of sadness in knowing that Mary is dying and that Sadie will have to learn to live without her best friend. At the same time, Sadie learns more about Mary’s relatives and creates new friends. She also finds out more about her own family members and what they are capable of doing without her assistance.

There is a recipe at the end of every chapter of the book. The recipes are referred to and seamlessly worked into the story. I loved reading them and hope to make some of them this holiday season and beyond.

It’s been awhile since there was a new book in this series. I’m not sure if this book ties up loose ends or is a new beginning for Sadie. In either case, it was a very good read and got me into the right mood for the Christmas season.

I was provided a digital advance reader copy of this book by the publisher via Netgalley.

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