Baby, It's Dead Outside: An Un-Cozy Un-Culinary Josie Tucker Mystery (Josie Tucker Mysteries Book 5)
EM Kaplan, author
In the quaint but frigid Chicago suburb of Lake Park Villa, grumpy food blogger Josie Tucker is on the trail of a would-be killer. Is wealthy cough drop heiress Lynetta Downes about to lose her life? Or is she simply losing her marbles?
Besides writing posts for a food blog, Josie Tucker likes to run “errands” for Greta Williams, a wealthy Boston matron, to satisfy her itch to “stick her nose in other people’s lives,” as shown in Kaplan’s entertaining fifth series whodunit (after 2017’s Full Slab Dead). Josie heads to Illinois after Greta becomes concerned about the well-being of her older sister, Lynetta Downes, with whom she has limited contact. Lynetta, a nursing home resident, fears for her life, but Greta isn’t sure whether her sibling is really at risk or is suffering from paranoia. Posing as Lynetta’s niece, Josie checks out the nursing home, where she learns that her “aunt” has memory issues. Lynetta, who disputes that she has dementia, reports that during the past six months some of her possessions have been stolen and she’s repeatedly felt sick for no obvious reason. The case takes a deadly turn, and Josie ends up involved in probing multiple murders. Kaplan does a great job of blending humor and suspense. Despite the subtitle, this is a fun treat for fans of culinary cozies. (Self-published)