Book Review: Fruit of all Evil by Paige Shelton
A Marriage Made for Murder?
Once I started to read the second installment of the Farmer's Market Mysteries I was a little disappointed. Seven months had elapsed since the first installment and during that time not too much had happened with Becca Robins.
As Fruit of All Evil begins, one of the first things we discover is that Becca and Ian are now an official couple. I was hoping something would have happened between Becca and Sam but only author Paige Shelton can explain the relationship and what's in store. Honestly, I think in the future Becca and Sam will get together but only Shelton can decide their fate.
When this installment begins, Becca finds herself planning a fast wedding for fellow friend/vendor Linda, who's marrying the dashing Drew Forsyth. They have to marry fast since Drew is a Navy SEAL and will be leaving on a top secret mission in the coming days. He wants to be married before his deployment, but with the murder of his mother those plans might have to be scrapped.
Everyone in town basically hates Madeline Forsyth. She's a rich and powerful banking executive who loves the word "foreclosure" along with daunting the community. Becca's not sure what's happening when Madeline blows through the farmer's market confronting Linda a dinner party she's throwing later in the evening.
When Linda confesses she has no idea of the dinner Madeline waves it off as she leaves. The next time anyone will see Madeline is when her body's discovered in her bedroom later on that night.
With Madeline dead upstairs, the others at the dinner party, Drew's cousins Sally, Shawn, Mid and Alan make up for good suspects, but so do a few of the towns residents who are have been threatened with foreclosure.
Becca promises not to get involved with the investigation and makes an offer with Officer Sam: discretely "share information" which should help the police track down the killer.
During Becca's investigation, she begins to uncover family secrets, while at the same time planning Linda's wedding secretly with the other vendors.
Although this installment isn't as fast paced as the first Shelton does bring it to an incredible climax which even I didn't see coming and I was shocked. At the same time I think what happens should have remained because then it would have been the first time a crimeozy would have been shocking for the reader.
On the plus side, the characters are interesting and she does use a lot of dialogue rather than narrative to keep them fresh and entertaining. I also like the fact that Becca doesn't have a lot of excessive baggage (well two ex husbands) and she lives in the moment. She's a very carefree character.
Once the story is over be prepared for some delicious sounding recipes. If I could cook then I'd attempt some of them.