My Review:A bright new talent makes her fiction debut with this first novel in a delicious crime series set in rural South Africa—a flavorful blend of The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency and Goldy Schulz, full of humor, romance, and recipes, and featuring a charming cast of characters
Tannie Maria ("tannie" meaning auntie, the respectful Afrikaans address for a woman older than you) is a middle-aged widow who likes to cook—and eat. She shares her culinary love through her work as a recipe columnist for the local paper, until the Gazette decides its readers are hungrier for advice on matters of the heart than for lunch and dinner ideas.
Tannie Maria doesn't like the change but soon discovers she has a knack—and a passion—for helping people. Of course, a recipe is always part of the remedy she offers. Assisting other people with their problems, Tannie Maria is eventually forced to face her own issues, especially when the troubles of those she helps touch on the pain of her own past—like a woman who contacts her desperate to escape her abusive husband.
When the woman is murdered, Tannie Maria becomes dangerously entwined in the investigation, despite the best efforts of a handsome detective named Kannemeyer, who is determined to keep her safe. Suddenly, this practical, down-to-earth woman is involved in something much more sinister than perfecting her chocolate cake recipe . . .
Reading this book I was instantly transported to South Africa, which I'm afraid to say is not somewhere I had thought about much before. I could picture the landscape and the descriptions of the recipes and food were so immaculate. What I mean by that is that the recipes fit so well into the book and Tannie Maria making each of them were some of my favorite parts of the book. I truly cannot wait for more books to come out in this series -- I was so intrigued and so hungry reading this one!!
I definitely recommend this for anyone that likes murder mysteries as well as books involving food. I was reminded a bit of Tumbling by Diane McKinney-Whetstone when reading this -- something about the feeling and the descriptions.
Recipes for Love and Murder comes out next week on November 3, 2015, and you can purchase HERE!
"If you are honest with yourself," I said to the potato salad, "is the feeling of love really any better than the satisfaction you get from a good meal?"