Title: Ice Cream and Incidents (Peridale Cafe Mystery #13)
Author: Agatha Frost
Published on: 19th June 2018
Genre: Cozy Mystery
As the previous story ended, we saw Barker’ decision to quit his detective job and become a full-time writer. Jessie’s adoption hasn’t come through yet – the social worker Kim has stopped answering Julia’s phone calls.
The owner of the B&B in Peridale, Evelyn, wins a vacation at Blackpool but she has a ‘premonition’ about something bad going to happen during her stay so she gives away her vouchers to Dot. Dot asks Julia, Barker and Jessie to tag along.
On the D-Day, Dot comes down with a Lurgy (a made-up illness) and Alfie joins them instead. Barker, Julia, Jessie and Alfie reach Sparkles by the Sea, a drag B&B in Blackpool. They meet the owner/drag queen Russell. The same night, during a drag show in progress, one of the famous drag queens Simone meets with an accident on stage.
Julia soon learns that this was no accident and someone is trying to harm Simone.
Ice Cream and Incidents is the 13th book in Peridale Cafe series. With each book in the series, I have seen the characters grow – Jessie especially. In this book, Jessie has no idea there’s a surprise or two waiting for her. The girl is turning 18 and she wants the adoption to go through before that. But the social workers are taking their own sweet time.
Meanwhile, Julia cannot stay away from baking and sleuthing for too long. When she finds the rig that injured Simone was sabotaged, her curiosity gets the better of her. She has to poke her nose where it doesn’t belong – never mind if others don’t like it.
I loved the previous book but I cannot say the same about this one. The plot sounded a little dull and there was nothing great about the mystery. Jessie’s role was, no doubt, the only best part of this story.
The identity of the perp was not very surprising – when Julia goes around sleuthing, she talks to this particular person who reveals a clue (unknowingly) and this helps Julia solve the case.(Although she doesn’t realize it until the end.) Barker says not all cases can be solved. I really wish to see Julia not solve a case for a change. I wonder how that would change our budding amateur sleuth.
Overall, this wasn’t bad either. Just that, I had high expectations from this book and I am a little disappointed.