Hardcover, 320 pages
Expected publication: August 2nd 2011 by Berkley Hardcover
ISBN: 0425241432 (ISBN13: 9780425241431)
primary language English
Clare Cosi, general manager and barista at The Village Blend coffeehouse along with her ex-mother-in-law, Madame Blance Dubois, have entered a business agreement with Madame's old friend, Alica. They will be marketing a new product called Mocha Magic Coffee, which will be comprised of the blends beans, chocolate by Voss and an herbal aphrodisiac from Alicia. The new coffee drink will be only be sold at Aphrodite's Village, an online website for women run by seven Aphrodite "sisters."
After Detective Mike Quinn, Clare's love interest, convinces Clare that the Mocha Magic Coffee has something a little more potent than herbs in it, a substance that could be illegal, she is afraid news of this will ruin the coffeeshop. Being part of the Aphrodite Village has proved to be very profitable for the sisters and the competition is fierce to get one of those coveted slots. Is someone covering up what is actually in the product just to amp up the sales figures?
When greedy ambitions and revenge overcome a moral conscience, the results are murderous. At the launch party, one of the "sisters" is murdered followed by another one of the sisters meeting an untimely death. Clare starts her own investigation but as the bodies start stacking up and it's plain to see Clare could be the next one, she knows it's time to stop the murderer. ASAP!
Meanwhile, Mike is working on a cold case that might have a bearing on Madame and Alicia's relationship in the past. Madame and Alicia aren't too forthcoming about any of those circumstances. One more thing for Clare to worry about as her daughter Joy is now dating a young police officer involved in the investigation.
Murder by Mocha is the 10th in series and there is enough for new reader to not feel like they are missing anything yet not too repetitive for readers who have read the series from the beginning. It's like visiting with old friends in each book but with each successive story, we get a little bit more insights into one or two of the main characters.
Coyle presents her most complicated case so far.The prologue grabbed me in this one right away as it was narrated by the killer and interspersed among the chapters the reader gets more input from the killer's point of view. Towards the end of the books there were a few over the top scenarios but they did not detract from the overall well constructed mystery. I enjoyed my visit in the Village and all the recipes at the end very much. 4****
Disclosure: A review copy of the book was provided by Berkley in exchange for my honest opinion.
To celebrate the release of Murder by Mocha, Berkley is allowing me to give away 1 copy of the book. Open to US only. Deadline to enter is September 2nd at 5 PM. This is the first time I have used the doc. ( I know, where have I been?) Please leave a comment saying you filled out form just to make sure I didn't mess up somewhere. Pain in the patoot? Yeah, definitely, but humor me this one time. Thanks!