From the Back Cover:
Welcome to Torte ---
a friendly, small-town family bake shop where the treats are so good that, it's criminal...
After graduating from culinary school, Juliet Capshaw returns to her quaint hometown of Ashland, Oregon, to heal a broken heart and help her mom at the family bakery. The Oregon Shakespeare Festival is bringing in lots of tourist looking for some crumpets to go with their heroic couplets. But when one of Torte's customers turns up dead, there's much ado about murder...
The victim is Nancy Hudson, the festival's newest board member. A modern-day Lady Macbeth, Nancy has given more than a few actors and artists enough reasons to kill her...but still. The silver lining? Jules's high school sweetheart, Thomas, is the investigator on the case. His flirtations are as delicious as ever, and Jules can't help but want to have her cake and eat it too. But will she have her just desserts? Murder might be bad for business, but love is the sweetest treat of all...
Heartbroken after discovering a secret concerning her husband, Juliet (Jules) leaves the cruise ship they both are employed on and comes home to Ashland, Oregon. Jules hopes that temporarily helping her mom run Torte, the family bakery, will help her sort things out. Everything is going well until a loud and bossy member of the local Shakespearean festival is found dead in Torte. Now Jules has another reason for hanging around Ashland a bit longer than planned. She needs to figure out who wanted the newcomer dead and why she was killed in the bakery.
Meet Your Baker is a wonderful first book the Bakeshop Mystery series by Ellie Alexander. Besides Jules's broken heart and the death of Nancy, the author wove many other stories into the book. Each thread makes sense as you move along in the book, some intersecting with the murder and others just additional everyday life. The book was descriptive and was able to immerse myself into the town of Ashland and the lives of its residents.
The author did a great job building the world surrounding Jules. The characters were well developed and written realistically. The story was fast paced and kept me engaged from the start. The author took her time revealing the real reason for Jules's return to Ashland and this helps build up an emotional connection with Jules. The author also created a cast of characters that were realistic and believable - so real that I felt like I was part of the book.
I enjoyed trying to unravel the murder mystery. Every time I thought I had things all figured out, the author tossed in a complication that changed my mind. Ellie Alexander did a great job keeping everything under wraps and revealing things methodically and at the right time. I was none the wiser until the actual reveal.
I look forward to starting book 2.
Paperback review copy courtesy of author at no cost in exchange for an honest review.
I am part of the Craving for Cozies Challenge 2016.
See my list of Cozies here: