Along with her other many accomplishments, Edith Maxwell’s bio states that she is a former farmer of a certified organic farm. This has clearly helped her weave an intricate and nefarious murder mystery taking place in the farming community of Westbury, Massachusetts.
It’s autumn and Cam is busy preparing for her fall harvest and getting produce ready for the local farmers market. But let’s back it up. Timing, as they say – is everything. Her Uncle Albert was a well- loved local farmer. He was a successful businessman and farmer, growing an abundance of organic farm produce and herbs. But coincidentally, when his health started to go downhill, so did his niece’s job. Seems Cam became unemployed just as Uncle Albert knew he had no choice but to give up his farm. What else could he do but offer it to his niece, Cameron Flaherty.
Cam jumps right in and takes over his farm—a virtual one woman show! She quickly realizes a good way to promote her farm is to host her first farm-to-table dinner. Not only would it give her farm great publicity, but it would also give exposure to the other farmers in the community.
All the local farmers get together discounting or donating their goods or services to help make this dinner event a huge success.
But when Irene Burr, one of the town’s most unloved citizens shows up, she stirs up a mess of trouble. Guess Irene is just one miserable person who doesn’t seem to like anyone. She gets her stepson, Bobby, all riled up because he refuses to work for her import-export textile business. She antagonizes Bobby’s friend, Sim, by flinging unjustified insults. In fact, Irene keeps ruffling feathers with everyone she comes in contact with at the farm-to-table dinner.
In spite of Irene, the event is a home run success. But that evening after the dinner ended, someone apparently had enough of Irene and dished out her just dessert (and I’m not talking apple pie). Let’s just say she met a very grisly fate. Practically everyone who knew Irene becomes a suspect.
Cam tries her best to carry on with her daily farming routine and keep Irene’s murder on the backburner. But she’s drawn smack into it when her friend Bobby Burr and even Sim become suspects.
I loved the detail of this book. Ms. Maxwell learned the farming trade well and it certainly shows. She gives us all a clear look at the hardworking lives of farmers trying to make a living. We’re not spared the struggles and strife of their everyday life trying to bring fresh fruits, vegetables and meat to our table.
When I finished this really intense and well done cozy, it made me appreciate my local farmers market even more. Edith Maxwell brings us a different type of cozy as only she, because of her first-hand organic farming knowledge, can do.
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