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A Peach of a Murder

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All year round, retired schoolteacher Phyllis Newsom is as sweet as peach pie-except during the Peach Festival, whose blue ribbon has slipped through Phyllis's fingers more than once...Everyone's a little shook up when the corpse of a no-good local turns up underneath a car in a local garage. But even as Phyllis engages in some amateur sleuthing, she won't let it distract All year round, retired schoolteacher Phyllis Newsom is as sweet as peach pie-except during the Peach Festival, whose blue ribbon has slipped through Phyllis's fingers more than once...Everyone's a little shook up when the corpse of a no-good local turns up underneath a car in a local garage. But even as Phyllis engages in some amateur sleuthing, she won't let it distract her from out-baking her rivals and winning the upcoming Peach Festival contest. She and all the other contestants guard their secret, original recipes with their lives-and talk a whole lot of trash. With her unusual Spicy Peach Cobbler, Phyllis hopes to knock 'em dead. But that's just an expression-never in her wildest dreams did she think her cobbler would actually kill a judge. Now, she's suspected of murder-and she's got to bake this case wide open.


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All year round, retired schoolteacher Phyllis Newsom is as sweet as peach pie-except during the Peach Festival, whose blue ribbon has slipped through Phyllis's fingers more than once...Everyone's a little shook up when the corpse of a no-good local turns up underneath a car in a local garage. But even as Phyllis engages in some amateur sleuthing, she won't let it distract All year round, retired schoolteacher Phyllis Newsom is as sweet as peach pie-except during the Peach Festival, whose blue ribbon has slipped through Phyllis's fingers more than once...Everyone's a little shook up when the corpse of a no-good local turns up underneath a car in a local garage. But even as Phyllis engages in some amateur sleuthing, she won't let it distract her from out-baking her rivals and winning the upcoming Peach Festival contest. She and all the other contestants guard their secret, original recipes with their lives-and talk a whole lot of trash. With her unusual Spicy Peach Cobbler, Phyllis hopes to knock 'em dead. But that's just an expression-never in her wildest dreams did she think her cobbler would actually kill a judge. Now, she's suspected of murder-and she's got to bake this case wide open.

30 review for A Peach of a Murder

  1. 4 out of 5

    Mark Baker

    The annual peach festival is coming and Phyllis is hoping she can finally beat her friend and roommate in the backing festival. However, she gets distracted when some murders start happening. I didn't like the characters, the plot was bad, and the writing was distracting. Read my full review at Carstairs Considers. The annual peach festival is coming and Phyllis is hoping she can finally beat her friend and roommate in the backing festival. However, she gets distracted when some murders start happening. I didn't like the characters, the plot was bad, and the writing was distracting. Read my full review at Carstairs Considers.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Christy

    I usually love books where the main character is much older than I am. While I did like these group of retired school teachers, they weren't my favorite. Even though this is considered a "Cozy Mystery"... I felt it was a bit sad in some places, and even had some things that some people would consider trigger warnings. However, I did enjoy the story and had no idea who the Killer was until the main character, Phyllis, was figuring it out herself. The amazing cover alone was what prompted me to re I usually love books where the main character is much older than I am. While I did like these group of retired school teachers, they weren't my favorite. Even though this is considered a "Cozy Mystery"... I felt it was a bit sad in some places, and even had some things that some people would consider trigger warnings. However, I did enjoy the story and had no idea who the Killer was until the main character, Phyllis, was figuring it out herself. The amazing cover alone was what prompted me to read this, and I wasn't disappointed. I also am obsessed with peaches, and there were some great recipes at the end.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    This is murder meets the Golden Girls. The four main characters are retired teachers who all live together. While the characters weren't quite enough to hold me interest, I did think it was good. I did not figure out the killer until the main character started realizing who it was. The recipes are great. This is murder meets the Golden Girls. The four main characters are retired teachers who all live together. While the characters weren't quite enough to hold me interest, I did think it was good. I did not figure out the killer until the main character started realizing who it was. The recipes are great.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Laurie

    A Peach of A Murder was a wonderful beginning to a fun, light cozy series. Phyllis Newsom is a widowed retired schoolteacher living in a house with several of her close friends and fellow retirees from the world of education when she is unexpectedly thrown into the mix of a murder. While she is picking peaches for a cooking contest at the county fair, the owner of the orchard is found dead under mysterious circumstances and Phyllis may be one of the only witnesses to the crime. After her son, a A Peach of A Murder was a wonderful beginning to a fun, light cozy series. Phyllis Newsom is a widowed retired schoolteacher living in a house with several of her close friends and fellow retirees from the world of education when she is unexpectedly thrown into the mix of a murder. While she is picking peaches for a cooking contest at the county fair, the owner of the orchard is found dead under mysterious circumstances and Phyllis may be one of the only witnesses to the crime. After her son, a sheriff's deputy, takes her statement and the cops seem to get nowhere on their investigation, curiosity takes over and Phyllis and her friends begin chatting with the network of small-town buddies to dig deeper into the lives of the deceased and his family. Meanwhile, another murder takes place at the cooking contest just as Phyllis serves her cobbler. Being present at both scenes makes Phyllis and her friends fall under suspicion and in an effort to clear their names, they must do a little detecting of their own. Livia Washburn hit a home run with this story. I adored the characters and thought the plot was clever. Phyllis is a witty and strong older woman, her friends reminded me of The Golden Girls and their new male roommate threw enough kinks into the works of the house to add humor at every turn. The banter between Phyllis and Sam is charming and while there is no real romance, their platonic chemistry is irresistible. While falling in love with the characters, I discovered the plot was outstanding. Rarely does a cozy mystery capture a reader's imagination enough to make the killer undetectable but in this case, I wasn't able to see the clues until the very end of the book. I began putting things together along with our amatuer sleuths and the story was riveting by that point. I was slightly disappointed by a little twist at the end but the situation was fitting and my disappointment was completely a personal issue. In no way should it detract from the books rating. Overall, I gave this book a 4 star rating but if I was able to be more specific, it would have received 4.75. It was "A Peach" of a cozy mystery and I highly recommend it!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Tari

    I just loved this mystery featuring a group of retired teachers! Since they all shared a house, it was sort of like the Golden Girls with the addition of a man. I really liked Mattie, the oldest teacher who kept busy with all her volunteer work and tutoring. Even though she was getting close to ninety, she didn't let that stop her. This was a great mystery with quite a few bodies piling up, and I would never have guessed the killer. I can't say much more due to some spoilers, but this book was a I just loved this mystery featuring a group of retired teachers! Since they all shared a house, it was sort of like the Golden Girls with the addition of a man. I really liked Mattie, the oldest teacher who kept busy with all her volunteer work and tutoring. Even though she was getting close to ninety, she didn't let that stop her. This was a great mystery with quite a few bodies piling up, and I would never have guessed the killer. I can't say much more due to some spoilers, but this book was awesome and kind of sad in places, but I'm really anxious to keep reading in the series.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Luffy

    It appears that I've just read a very good book, which in my book, happens once in a blue moon. What a dramatic yet emotional finale. I'm bowled over. I can't imagine the subsequent books in the series to live up to the benchmark set by this one. In a good but eerie way, the story reminded me of my favorite medium, which is anime. I can pay no higher compliment than that. It would be wonderful if this story is adapted onscreen and my hunch or insight or whatever is validated. The last time that It appears that I've just read a very good book, which in my book, happens once in a blue moon. What a dramatic yet emotional finale. I'm bowled over. I can't imagine the subsequent books in the series to live up to the benchmark set by this one. In a good but eerie way, the story reminded me of my favorite medium, which is anime. I can pay no higher compliment than that. It would be wonderful if this story is adapted onscreen and my hunch or insight or whatever is validated. The last time that person in the tale mentions Fred and the Pennsylvanians, it tugged on my heartstrings. The book is not littered, but more strewn with insightful tidbits about human nature, some of them erroneous, which was deliberate, methinks. I still don't know if the ending qualifies as a happy one, but there's closure, definitely. What an unforgettable book, one of the best I'll read this year.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jeannie and Louis Rigod

    This was a very likable book. The mysteries were well-crafted and kept my attention while learning to enjoy the new characters within the plot. The dialog was readable and made the book a pleasure. I was surprised but not after the explanation of the culprit whom seemed a victim as well as a killer. I will read the next in the series.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Lynn

    A really entertaining good read! I enjoyed the characters, and how they all not only live together but work well in this story! Kept my interest and didn't guess who did it until the author told me. Already ordered the 2nd in this series! Of course I enjoy peaches also so............ A really entertaining good read! I enjoyed the characters, and how they all not only live together but work well in this story! Kept my interest and didn't guess who did it until the author told me. Already ordered the 2nd in this series! Of course I enjoy peaches also so............

  9. 5 out of 5

    Suzanne

    Nice debut to a cozy series. I found Carolyn a little hard to take, but I'll definitely give the next book in the series a go! Nice debut to a cozy series. I found Carolyn a little hard to take, but I'll definitely give the next book in the series a go!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Linda

    Good start to the series. I liked the characters and look forward to seeing what happens to them in the future. Good mystery as well.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Camille

    A Peach of a Murder by Livia J. Washburn A Peach of a Murder is obviously a murder mystery. And to top off the fun, it's a baking murder mystery! It is the first book in Livia J. Washburn's baking mystery series: A Fresh-Baked Mystery. Phyllis Newsom lives in the area of Texas famous for its peaches. Each year a huge peach festival occurs in the town, complete with a baking competition, and this year Phyllis is determined to win. However, Phyllis has a rival, her own boarder, Carolyn, who has taken A Peach of a Murder by Livia J. Washburn A Peach of a Murder is obviously a murder mystery. And to top off the fun, it's a baking murder mystery! It is the first book in Livia J. Washburn's baking mystery series: A Fresh-Baked Mystery. Phyllis Newsom lives in the area of Texas famous for its peaches. Each year a huge peach festival occurs in the town, complete with a baking competition, and this year Phyllis is determined to win. However, Phyllis has a rival, her own boarder, Carolyn, who has taken blue ribbon the past two years. Phyllis is determined her peach recipe will win, and so she heads over to the Bishop farm with her boarders and close friends Mattie, Eve and Carolyn. Mattie is helping Phyllis to choose the best looking peaches, which Eve is helping Carolyn find the best peaches on the other side of the orchard. Mr. Bishop, a pleasant man who was once suspected of beating his son, has been helpful with their peach-gathering needs. A few minutes later, Phyllis goes to find Mr. Bishop to ask him something and when she does, she unfortunately finds him dead, squished under his car. The question is: did the jack fail? Or did someone cause it to fail on purpose? A few weeks later, Carolyn and Phyllis are working hard at perfecting their secret peach recipes for the festival. Phyllis has come up with a great idea for a spicy peach cobbler with candied ginger to really add that spicy kick. On the day of the peach festival Carolyn and Phyllis are both anxiously awaiting judging of their tasty peach recipes. Carolyn has come up with a peaches and cream cheesecake and Phyllis is just a bit worried that she may not win, as tasty as her spicy peach cobbler is. After praising Carolyn's work, the judges reach Phyllis' booth, and in the middle of tasting her peach cobbler one of the judges, Donnie Boatwright keels over dead throwing suspicion on Phyllis' cooking, and on anyone else that the judges tasted food from, including Carolyn. Phyllis is determined to get to the bottom of the Boatwright death, ruled a murder, and feels it in her heart that the Bishop death is somehow not an accident, and connected to the Boatwright murder. But in their peaceful town, who would have a motive to kill them both? Read A Peach of a Murder to find out! I thought this was a cute and cozy little murder mystery. I like baking mysteries and this was no exception. However, it also was not exceptional. While I will read the next book in the series (since I already own it) I doubt this will be my favorite baking mystery series of all time. Definitely a quick and easy, worthwhile read, and I definitely did not guess who the killer or killers were until right as it was revealed at the end. A bit of a surprise, and almost a bit unbelievable, but I guess it is up to each reader to decide how believable, or not, the identity of the murderer or murderers is. I say 3.5 out of 5 stars. Not bad, definitely cute, but not extraordinary.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Avid Series Reader

    A Peach of a Murder by Livia J. Washburn is the first book of the Fresh-Baked Mystery series set in modern-day Parker County Texas. Phyllis Newsom is a retired teacher, a widow who decided to keep her home and share it with fellow retired teachers as roommates. Carolyn Wilbarger is not only Phyllis’ roommate, but her rival in the annual peach festival cooking contest. Phyllis and Carolyn are very secretive about their original contest recipes, concealing their cooking efforts from each other in A Peach of a Murder by Livia J. Washburn is the first book of the Fresh-Baked Mystery series set in modern-day Parker County Texas. Phyllis Newsom is a retired teacher, a widow who decided to keep her home and share it with fellow retired teachers as roommates. Carolyn Wilbarger is not only Phyllis’ roommate, but her rival in the annual peach festival cooking contest. Phyllis and Carolyn are very secretive about their original contest recipes, concealing their cooking efforts from each other in the shared kitchen. When the judge samples Phyllis’ cobbler then drops dead, it stuns everyone at the festival; when the autopsy determines he was poisoned, Phyllis knows she didn’t do it, but feels compelled to discover who did. She investigates the judge’s life, family, friends and business associates. Her knowledge of townspeople (former students) from years of teaching serves her well in her questioning. Several murders occur; it’s hard to imagine they could be connected, but she eventually ties together all the evidence and understands the pattern. Her newest roommate, Sam Fletcher, turns out to be a wonderful assistant sleuth, as well as a kind and compassionate man. Once Phyllis’ conservative roommates get over the fact he’s a man, they enjoy his companionship. The cozy mystery is filled with Southern small-town culture, like dressing up for funerals to show respect, regardless of the heat, and preparing a roast in Coca-Cola. And of course, recipes are included.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Connie N.

    #1 in the Fresh-Baked cozy mystery series. I liked it. The heroine, a retired history teacher, is a bit old-fashioned and straight-laced, which sometimes makes her seem a bit off-putting because of her rigid standards. But basically she is a thoughtful and intelligent woman with a strong loyalty to her friends and a need to "do the right thing." In this first book of the Fresh-Baked Mysteries, she enters a peach cooking contest in her home town, with dire results. There are delicious-sounding rec #1 in the Fresh-Baked cozy mystery series. I liked it. The heroine, a retired history teacher, is a bit old-fashioned and straight-laced, which sometimes makes her seem a bit off-putting because of her rigid standards. But basically she is a thoughtful and intelligent woman with a strong loyalty to her friends and a need to "do the right thing." In this first book of the Fresh-Baked Mysteries, she enters a peach cooking contest in her home town, with dire results. There are delicious-sounding recipes included in the book. I'll definitely read more of this series.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Brenda Kirton

    Good to finally read the first of the series. I can definitely feel what the characters are like. Multiple seemingly unrelated murders, with a very unexpected connection. But when you look back it fits. Very good mystery.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Eileen

    Phyllis is widowed and a retired school teacher. She has borders living in her home with her since her husband is now gone and she has a big house.. The borders are all former teachers that she has known for many years. There is a Peach Festival in Texas every year and there is always a great competition to be the winner of the best Peach dessert. Lots of secret recipes are being created by the women so they can hopefully win the prize. Meanwhile another new border comes to rent a room from Phyl Phyllis is widowed and a retired school teacher. She has borders living in her home with her since her husband is now gone and she has a big house.. The borders are all former teachers that she has known for many years. There is a Peach Festival in Texas every year and there is always a great competition to be the winner of the best Peach dessert. Lots of secret recipes are being created by the women so they can hopefully win the prize. Meanwhile another new border comes to rent a room from Phyllis and it is quite different since it is a male. He likes the house and was highly recommended as a good person, so Phyllis decides to let him move in. They become good friends and the ladies all get along with him. As the days go on there is a few shocking deaths in the town and murder is suspected. Mike is Phyllis's son and the town sheriff and he is in charge of the investigation on the two mysterious death and another crime that is suspected as manslaughter if the person survives. Phyllis gets involved along with Sam, her new tenant in trying to solve the crimes. Lots of suspicion on many people with good reason to want to commit murder. In the end it is a shocking surprise as to who committed the murders + the attempt at murder of another person. The person decides to confess to the crimes.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    Cute little story about a retired school teacher who loves to cook and her 3 retired school teacher friends who board with her in a large house in small town Texas and all the drama they get up too. Recipes at the end and the 1st book in a series of 14 (so far).

  17. 5 out of 5

    Shala

    Nice cozy mystery. I really enjoyed the characters being older and former teachers. I look forward to continuing the series.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Cindy

    I'm happy to start this series! I'm happy to start this series!

  19. 5 out of 5

    Diane Morasco

    A Peach of a Murder kicks off Livia J. Washburn's mouthwatering Fresh-Baked Mystery series. Yummy! Let me tell you straight away, you will definitely be on the hunt for a Peach Festival & some heavenly peach-pie piping hot from the oven. Oh, go ahead, toss on a few scoops of ice cream. I'm not Paula Deen so homemade is not necessary for this foodie. Good 'ole Turkey Hill or Blue Bunny does the trick. Crazy good! I read A Peach of a Murder w/ my faux Texas accent which is actually quite good... tha A Peach of a Murder kicks off Livia J. Washburn's mouthwatering Fresh-Baked Mystery series. Yummy! Let me tell you straight away, you will definitely be on the hunt for a Peach Festival & some heavenly peach-pie piping hot from the oven. Oh, go ahead, toss on a few scoops of ice cream. I'm not Paula Deen so homemade is not necessary for this foodie. Good 'ole Turkey Hill or Blue Bunny does the trick. Crazy good! I read A Peach of a Murder w/ my faux Texas accent which is actually quite good... thank you JR Ewing! Livia's description about life in Weatherford, Texas is unbelievable. I wanted to go visit the gritty, broiling Texas climate in search of a Peach Festival. Which is a plus whenever I'm reading any book, but especially a cozy! If the author pulls me off the island & plunks me down into their fictional town it is definitely a winner. Washburn has an uncommon way w/ words & knows how to create a stirring tale. A Peach of a Murder is a delectable debut. Washburn doesn't toss nonsense into a baking pan & expect it to taste good. It is good because all the ingredients to prepare a well written & interesting story is included in this pungent cozy. What I thought was impressive was the way Washburn weaved the mystery, showcased the ladies various degrees of friendship, introduced a man in their enclave & touched on a very delicate matter. A Peach of a Murder isn't your standard whodunit, Washburn seasoned it w/ layers of twist & turns. Washburn showcased her writing chops by encompassing different story lines & crocheting it all together in a delightful bow. A Peach of a Murder has a terrific cast of characters. Phyllis isn't the only witty character to grace the pages of Washburn's baking debut. I'm not a fan of the Golden Girls... the theme song is torture enough. I just can't get into those biddies, yet, I pictured Rue McClanahan as Eve. 'Nuff said! A Peach of a Murder is a zesty start to an engaging series. Phyllis made me ache for my grandma who passed away when I was 8. For me, 23 years is too long to be w/o a grandma & while reading this baked delight she wasn't too far away. So, what 'cha waiting for? The Peach Festival to pass ya by? Grab a copy of A Peach of a Murder. After all, Weatherford is the Peach Capital of Texas. I also love the cover. I just wanted to jump in & voilà end up picking peaches @ Newt Bishop's Orchard. Psst... I'm a cover tart!

  20. 4 out of 5

    Versel Rush

    I love Washburn's literary tour series. I love Texas mystery writers. I love mysteries set it Texas. So I thought the fresh-baked mysteries would be perfect (I even love Weatherford). Oh, was I wrong. The settings and Texasisms included in the book are spot on. And, unfortunately, those are the ONLY things to like in this book. The book plods along--and I mean PLODS. The dialogue is a little stilted but I'm assuming a way to differentiate her older school-marmish characters. However, being friends I love Washburn's literary tour series. I love Texas mystery writers. I love mysteries set it Texas. So I thought the fresh-baked mysteries would be perfect (I even love Weatherford). Oh, was I wrong. The settings and Texasisms included in the book are spot on. And, unfortunately, those are the ONLY things to like in this book. The book plods along--and I mean PLODS. The dialogue is a little stilted but I'm assuming a way to differentiate her older school-marmish characters. However, being friends with 70+ year old teachers, and one an English teacher, I recommend she try another character trait. The plot is unbelievable--literally. About halfway through the book the motives became clear and about 3/4's into it, the "killer" was obvious. Even so, I kept hearing myself think, "you have GOT to be kidding!". Unfortunately, she wasn't. And, finally, the big, huge, ENORMOUS problem with this book--a total lack of understanding of Texas law and the unforgivable sin of not checking before finishing the book. "Hold her as a material witness"? Really? Not in this state. "Attempted homicide"? HUH? "If there's a reason to want () dead, then it's murder"? WHAT? And, finally, criminally charging someone with sexual harrassment? NOPE. Buy a Penal Code, buy a Code of Criminal Procedure, or talk to an attorney. Do not put out a novel in which law enforcement is so misinformed. One star--and the last of this series for me.

  21. 5 out of 5

    AngryGreyCat

    A Peach of Murder is book one in Livia J. Washburn’s A Fresh Baked Mystery Series, which now boasts nine books. The protagonist, Phyllis, is perfecting her peach recipes for competition, when a murder occurs at the peach orchard. Her son is a local cop and that gives her an in with inside information and leads that she wouldn’t know about otherwise. Phyllis’s husband has died and she has turned the family home into a boarding house, mainly for retired teachers. One is an older good friend of her A Peach of Murder is book one in Livia J. Washburn’s A Fresh Baked Mystery Series, which now boasts nine books. The protagonist, Phyllis, is perfecting her peach recipes for competition, when a murder occurs at the peach orchard. Her son is a local cop and that gives her an in with inside information and leads that she wouldn’t know about otherwise. Phyllis’s husband has died and she has turned the family home into a boarding house, mainly for retired teachers. One is an older good friend of hers, Mattie, who is sadly showing the first signs of dementia. The plus was the resolution of the mystery and the tie up of all the threads, exceptionally well done! The hints were there, but subtly done. The theme of baking/cooking contests was fun and entertaining, just seeing the petty rivalries that such events stir up. The negative was I just didn’t find Phyllis all that exciting or likable. She is the stereotypical school marm character and comes across as judgmental to me. Myaybe being a teacher I am just sensitive to that portrayal of us? I think if you like very, very clean cozies that exemplify southern Christian values you will enjoy this more than I did. It is well written and I said the mystery piece was handled very well.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Terri Rowe

    This was an intriguing book for me. I think this is the first time I have read a book set in Texas. It was comforting and enjoyable to see that they have their fairs and festivals that they feel as passionately about as we feel about ours her in Michigan. I look forward to making both of the peach dessert recipes at the end of the book. Phyllis Newsom is a retired teacher that lives in a big old farm house, renting out rooms to some of her friends, also retired teachers. They all seem to get alon This was an intriguing book for me. I think this is the first time I have read a book set in Texas. It was comforting and enjoyable to see that they have their fairs and festivals that they feel as passionately about as we feel about ours her in Michigan. I look forward to making both of the peach dessert recipes at the end of the book. Phyllis Newsom is a retired teacher that lives in a big old farm house, renting out rooms to some of her friends, also retired teachers. They all seem to get along just peachy, except for this time of year-when the festival rolls round with its baking contest. Then Phyllis and Carolyn slip into competition mode and they are fierce competitors. This years festival has already been overshadowed by the death of a local farmer, Newt Bishop. Phyllis had been at his peach orchard that day picking peaches with Mattie while Carolyn had been with their other roommate Eve, out in the back orchard also picking a bushel of peaches for preparation for the competition on the afternoon that Newt met his demise, seemingly in an accident in his barn. Or was it?

  23. 5 out of 5

    Jan

    3 1/2 Stars. The annual peach festival in Weatherford, Texas is disrupted by two unexpected deaths that turn out to be murders. Phyllis Newsom is not only put out because the Peach Cook-off judging is disrupted but because one of her good friends and boarders is the chief suspect. Despite warnings from just about everyone, Phyllis is determined to find the real murderer. This story about retired school teachers who share a house has been compared to The Golden Girls and I see a bit of that. Mostl 3 1/2 Stars. The annual peach festival in Weatherford, Texas is disrupted by two unexpected deaths that turn out to be murders. Phyllis Newsom is not only put out because the Peach Cook-off judging is disrupted but because one of her good friends and boarders is the chief suspect. Despite warnings from just about everyone, Phyllis is determined to find the real murderer. This story about retired school teachers who share a house has been compared to The Golden Girls and I see a bit of that. Mostly I see some very southern ladies and gentlemen with old fashioned values and that is not a bad thing. There were a few times I wanted to shake Phyllis for being so forgiving, but I have known ladies like her so I just let it ride. The mystery is pretty good and the town and characters are fun. It does move a bit slow at the beginning. The age of the characters may make it more interesting to mature readers. I will probably read the next in the series.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Amy the book-bat

    So I was looking up Joanne Fluke on the library website to see if I could request her new book, and this one came up on the list under her name. I thought perhaps it was an early book, possibly under a pseudonym, but it is actually by a totally different person, so I guess it came up because it is a similar type of novel to what Fluke writes. I figured I would give it a shot. This novel seemed to be kind of slow to me. I had trouble liking the characters. They just didn't grab me and hold my att So I was looking up Joanne Fluke on the library website to see if I could request her new book, and this one came up on the list under her name. I thought perhaps it was an early book, possibly under a pseudonym, but it is actually by a totally different person, so I guess it came up because it is a similar type of novel to what Fluke writes. I figured I would give it a shot. This novel seemed to be kind of slow to me. I had trouble liking the characters. They just didn't grab me and hold my attention very well. The main story was decent. I did figure out who the killer was fairly early in the book. All in all it was an ok read. I do want to try the recipes that were included... Spicy Peach Cobbler with candied ginger sounds pretty good.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Dharia Scarab

    Since I don't normally write reviews unless I have something specific to say, here's the break down of how I rate my books... 1 star... This book was bad, so bad I may have given up and skipped to the end. I will avoid this author like the plague in the future. 2 stars... This book was not very good, and I won't be reading any more from the author. 3 stars... This book was ok, but I won't go out of my way to read more, But if I find another book by the author for under a dollar I'd pick it up. 4 sta Since I don't normally write reviews unless I have something specific to say, here's the break down of how I rate my books... 1 star... This book was bad, so bad I may have given up and skipped to the end. I will avoid this author like the plague in the future. 2 stars... This book was not very good, and I won't be reading any more from the author. 3 stars... This book was ok, but I won't go out of my way to read more, But if I find another book by the author for under a dollar I'd pick it up. 4 stars... I really enjoyed this book and will definitely be on the look out to pick up more from the series/author. 5 stars... I loved this book! It has earned a permanent home in my collection and I'll be picking up the rest of the series and other books from the author ASAP.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Text Addict

    This is the first of a proposed "Fresh-Baked Mystery" series. Here, heroine Phyllis Newsom is a retired schoolteacher whose peach cobbler is the last item one of the festival food judges tastes before he keels over, poisoned! The other two deaths don't appear to form a pattern ... but there is one, and a rather sad one at that. With a hint of potential romance arriving with a new boarder in Phyllis's house - another of several retired schoolteachers - and comfortingly competent law enforcement, This is the first of a proposed "Fresh-Baked Mystery" series. Here, heroine Phyllis Newsom is a retired schoolteacher whose peach cobbler is the last item one of the festival food judges tastes before he keels over, poisoned! The other two deaths don't appear to form a pattern ... but there is one, and a rather sad one at that. With a hint of potential romance arriving with a new boarder in Phyllis's house - another of several retired schoolteachers - and comfortingly competent law enforcement, it looks like a series with solid potential. (A little further investigation reveals that though this book is new to me, the series has already gone on for several additional books!)

  27. 5 out of 5

    Clare

    I had no interest in finishing this book. Picture The Golden Girls (one really old woman, one sexually voracious senior, one home owner and her rival/frenemy renter) but in the South. I LOVED Murder, She Wrote, but this is nothing like that series. I'l make a copy of the peach cobbler recipe, but I don't care who murdered the guy and reading about a bunch of old ladies squabbling while trying to solve it. I had no interest in finishing this book. Picture The Golden Girls (one really old woman, one sexually voracious senior, one home owner and her rival/frenemy renter) but in the South. I LOVED Murder, She Wrote, but this is nothing like that series. I'l make a copy of the peach cobbler recipe, but I don't care who murdered the guy and reading about a bunch of old ladies squabbling while trying to solve it.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Kimberly

    I was surprised when I found out who the murderer was at the end. It kind of left me sad at the end of the book. Overall, the book was a quick read. The characters were nice and I found myself wanting to get back to reading sooner rather than later. It's like The Golden Girls meets Cozy Mysteries. I was surprised when I found out who the murderer was at the end. It kind of left me sad at the end of the book. Overall, the book was a quick read. The characters were nice and I found myself wanting to get back to reading sooner rather than later. It's like The Golden Girls meets Cozy Mysteries.

  29. 4 out of 5

    BJ Rose

    Good first book in a series that I plan on continuing! It involves senior citizens and retired teachers, both of which describe me, so I was able to (mostly) relate. I also enjoy baking, so that works for me as well. Kudos to the author for doing a good job of masking the identity of the murderer, which I did not figure out until the main character did.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Alyssa White

    HA! This book is so great! It is so cute and so unexpected. It is like the Golden Girls meets Cozy Mystery, which is really great! The characters are so adorable - makes you wonder what they could get into next!

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