Beatrice is on a date with Mathew Anderson at Mon Chere Cafe`. Beatrice orders a glass of champagne and a slice of Passion Fruit Pie while Mathew orders a glass of champagne and a slice of Bea cake. (he’s unaware of the fact that Bea cake is named after Beatrice)
The waiter mixes up their order and Mathew is given the pie. He says he wants to taste it, puts a piece of the pie in his mouth and complains of a bitter taste. Then, he excuses himself and goes to the loo.
As Beatrice is about to eat the pie, she sees someone familiar. Before she could think about this someone, she hears a scream from the bathroom. Beatrice rushes to the bathroom and sees Mathew writhing on the floor, choking. She calls for help. A man claiming to be doctor tries to help Mathew but Mathew has now turned purple. Someone pus a hand on Beatrice’s shoulder and she turns to see who it is. No, it can’t be! She sees her husband and that’s not possible – her husband is dead! Then she realizes that it is her late husband’s brother – Fred. The doctor interrupts to convey the bad news – Mathew is dead.
Beatrice knows that the passion fruit pie was her order and someone poisoned it – meaning, someone is trying to kill her. But why? With the help of her Cookie Club girls – Stella and Sophie, and her hot-looking detective/ex-student/could-be-lover, Beatrice decides to solve the mystery behind the passion fruit pie poisoning.
Case of the Passion Fruit Poisoning is the third installment in the Cookie Club Mystery series. Beatrice is now somewhat experienced in solving mysteries. First, it was solving the murder case of her (dead) date in Case of the Strawberry Cream Stabbing and then she had to save her grandson from being charged with a murder that he did not commit in Case of the Sugar Cream Shooting. And now someone is trying to kill her! Or, are they?
Beatrice seems to be unlucky in love. This is the second time her date is found dead. Meanwhile, she doesn’t seem to be interested in Detective Rogers anymore. And then there is Fred, her brother-in-law, who is desperately trying to win her back. Beatrice choose her husband over Fred! Ouch!
I saw a lot of changes in this book. First, the writing – it seemed to be better than the first two books. Next, Stella and Sophie seemed to be a bit tame. Sophie was uncontrollable in the second series. Stella too seemed a bit calmer and wiser, though she was almost getting on Bea’s nerves, pestering her to join an online dating site.
Bea seemed to be suffering from a baker’s block (??) initially. Maybe it was the sudden death of Mathew or Fred’s appearance or the fact that someone was trying to kill her – cause of her block.
The story was hilarious and interesting. Sophie’s antics were as usual – she says her tea tastes funny. When Bea looks into her cup she sees that Sophie is drinking hot water mixed with salt! Bea also her issues – she likes Rogers but he’s her ex-student and she just cannot seem to get over that fact!
The best… (Or should I say shocking?) part of the story is when Bea tracks down Mathew’s kids. When I say kids, you might think that the guy had two or three… Let me tell you that Mathew had 23 kids!! 23!!!! All redheads. The guy seperated from his wife twenty five years ago, and then had an affair with a redhead – 23 kids in say.. 24/25 years. You do the math… and biology too. 😉 Quirky, crazy and unusual – that is the best part of a Cozy mystery.
I liked the way the story proceeded. The ending was really good and unexpected. Beatrice is not just a good baker, but a good detective too. I liked this book better than the first two. I also see that the ratings for this and the next two books in the series is higher than the first two. (In Goodreads). Maybe it is the writing or the story in general, but whatever the reason, I am definitely going to read the next two books in this series.
The thing I like about Jessica Lansberry’s Cookie Club mystery series is that there is a whole lot of baking and crime solving, fun, quirks, and romance – a perfect blend of spice and everything nice!
Character Development: 4.5/5
Overall rating: 4.5/5
Title: Case of the Passion Fruit Poisoning (Cookie Club Mystery #3)
Author: Jessica Lansberry
Published on: 26th May 2017
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Featured Image Credits: Goodreads.com