Tally is hosting a party for her parents who have just returned from a trip. Tally is hoping to get some publicity and new customers. Free sweets and some wine, the party is going well… until, Fran Abraham, the town’s foul-mouthed theatre director drops dead after a confrontation with Tally’s mother.
Tally’s mum was feeling sick while at the party and had to be taken to the ER. She’s diagnosed with dengue. Meanwhile, Grace, the new helper at Tally’s store is acting strange. Tally’s dad becomes the main suspect in Fran’s murder and it is up to Tally to clear his name off the suspects’ list.
Deadly Sweet Tooth is the second book in the Vintage Sweet Mysteries and can be read as a standalone. I have mixed opinions about this book.
As the story began, I was confused with who’s who. The story alternates between two POV characters – Yolanda and Tally. The switch of scenes from Tally and Yolanda wasn’t very clear. Until the end of first chapter, I thought Yolanda was the one who hired helpers for the sweet shop. Only later did I realise it was Tally’s sweet shop and Yolanda ran a gift basket business.
The writing is way too simple and some of the sentences are long and confusing. Also, the story could have been better with the elimination of a few redundant paragraphs. Like, there is this scene where Tally asks if Lily had breakfast and Lily replies in affirmative. This is a good breakfast kinda day because Tally had a good breakfast and so did Lily. I don’t know about you but I found these details to be not very appealing/interesting.
The mystery is what kept me hooked on to the story. Tally’s parents, the Holts, have a lot of skeletons in their closet. As the story proceeds, a few of their secrets are out; Tally and her brother are in for a series of shocking revelations.
Fran’s husband had a wandering eye. In fact, at the party, he was seen with a young lady in tow. Was Fran killed as a result of jealousy? Did any of Len’s (Fran’s husband) jilted lover kill Fran? Fran and Len had a prenup agreement so is it possible that she was killed by her husband? Too many possibilities here but as the story proceeds, the identity of the killer and their reason for murder becomes clear.
Tally’s parents play an important role in the story. In fact, it is one of their revelations that leads to the killer. Deadly Sweet Tooth is an inverted mystery as the readers have a clear picture as to who the killer is halfway through the story. But somehow, Tally misses looking further into the killer’s past. But one cannot blame her, the poor thing has too many things on her plate. She has to juggle between running a Vintage Sweet Shop and enquiring about her parents’ frequent visits to the police station.
Overall this was an okay read. The narration could have been better though…
Writing Style: 2.5/5
Character Development: 3/5
Overall Rating: 3/5
Title: Deadly Sweet Tooth
Author: Kaye George
Published on: 02 June 2020
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Many thanks to Kensington Books for the ARC. This is my honest and unbiased opinion.