ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Retro Reading: Hickory Smoked Homicide by Riley Adams

Updated on May 13, 2022
Hickory Smoked Homicide
Hickory Smoked Homicide

Beauty Pageants and Art Auctions Can Be Murder

There's always something a little creepy about beauty pageants for kids under eighteen, and in the third installment of the Memphis BBQ Mysteries, it's not surprising that (Ms.) Tristian Pembroke ends up dead.

That's the premise for Hickory Smoked Homicide by Riley Adams.

When Lulu Taylor is trying on dresses at Dee Dee's Darling Dress Shoppe, she overhears the owner (Dee Dee) talking with Tristian about contestants in an upcoming pageant. Both women don't hold back on their feelings toward the contestants and while Lulu doesn't find it odd that they'd be talking about the contestants, she does think it's odd that Tristian paid Dee Dee for the information she received. Who would have known?

Later, Tristian hosts a fundraiser at her home where Lulu's daughter-in-law's art work will be auctioned off. Her daughter-in-law Sara isn't too happy about going to the fundraiser since Tristian hasn't paid her in full for doing a huge portrait of her. Sara intends to put it up for auction once the actual auction is completed.

At the auction, Sara and Tristian have a very public fight (causing Sara to become a suspect once again in a murder) Tristian and her lover, Loren have a fight as do Tristian and her daughter Steffi. There's nothing like arguing to damper a good evening.

With Sara once again a suspect, Lulu starts to do a little investigating of her own as she enlists the help of her friend Cherry. They concoct a plan in which Cherry is going to do a total wardrobe makeover so the reluctant woman goes with her to Dee Dee's shop.

Lulu's other nine year old granddaughter, Coco (and twin sister to Ella Beth) enters the pageant with Cherry wanting to "learn" what it takes to become a pageant coach. No one finds it odd that this is what Cherry wants to do.

Lulu also has to contend with a blogger who has recently moved to Memphis and is set up by her son Ben. As she tells him that she's been happy being alone for years and now she's not sure if she wants romance in her life.

I thought that this installment has been by far the best so far. The plot is great and in keeping with the murderous style of Adams, there is a double homicide and the ending is unexpected. I should have saw it coming and maybe I did think for a moment but the thought slipped my mind.

On the downside of this installment: Adams continues to slow the pace down by having details repeated many times throughout the book. I was also confused since one of the character's last name kept changing from Walter to Walter's and there is a problem at the end with the type of vehicle the murderer is driving. Although minor, it still made me wonder who should take the blame here.

Also, in the previous installments, it's spring but there doesn't seem to be any time change. I was confused as to if years had gone by, or is Lulu solving a crime every other week? It's referenced earlier that Derrick in the first installment was spotted going into a tattoo shop, but now he's fully tattooed and if memory serves me right, he didn't have any tattoo's in the beginning.

Anyway, that's just my opinion and as usual, Adam's includes some recipes at the end. Not being a fan of tomatoes, I think I'd skip the tomato pie.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)