It’s my pleasure to be on the blog tour for Death on the Menu by Emma Davies. This is the third in Davies’ Adam and Eve Mystery series.
Title: Death on the Menu
Author: Emma Davies
Publication Day: September 22, 2022
Buy Link: https://geni.us/B0B21SSK37social
Francesca Eve has planned a showstopping funeral supper to say goodbye in style, but the last thing she expects is a murder on the menu…
When elderly millionaire and eccentric entrepreneur Clarence Lightman dies, his nearest and dearest gather one final time at Justice House, Clarence’s beautiful country estate, for the reading of his will. But the day ends in uproar when it is revealed that whoever solves a series of complex clues will inherit everything. Will one of Clarence’s disagreeable children outwit everyone else for the fortune, or could his devoted housekeeper or even Francesca herself win the day?
Francesca knows she should stick to the kitchen and stay out of this lethal game, but she is unwillingly drawn into the mystery when she finds one of Clarence’s sons, blood pooling from a deadly thwack to the head, shoved into the larder. Somebody is clearly not playing fair, and Francesca feels sure that they won’t stop until all of the competition has been eliminated.
Trapped in the game until all the riddles are solved, Francesca must solve the clues and find the ruthless killer to protect herself and her fellow innocent guests. But she can’t trust anyone. Fran must use all her wits, not only to hunt down the truth, but to stay alive…
An addictive cozy crime novel packed with twists you won’t expect. If you love Faith Martin, M.C. Beaton and The Thursday Murder Club you’ll adore this thrilling mystery.
Francesca (Fran) Eve’s old school chum, Olivia, has hired her to cater the funeral dinner for Clarence Lightman. Mr. Lightman, an author who created games based on his books, died a wealthy man. His will makes one last effort to reconcile his fractured family by sending his “nearest and dearest” on a treasure hunt. His children do not take this news well, and they’re really unhappy when they learn that Olivia – the “hired help” – has the right to try to unravel the clues and claim an inheritance for herself.
This book is nearly impossible to put down! The treasure hunt premise is unique and a lot of fun. The characters end up in some pretty outlandish situations trying to chase down the clues that lead to the fortune. And in addition to trying to sort out the clues, Fran and Adam are trying to track down a murderer.
There’s some stiff competition among the teams (Marcus and Cate, two of Lightman’s children; Saul, the third of Lightman’s children; and Fran, Olivia, and Adam). At least one of the teams is playing dirty, and we know it isn’t our fearless protagonists. The fact that someone is willing to stoop to murder really ramps up the tension in the story.
And the characters! Fran is a delight. She’s close to my age, which makes me appreciate her that much more. She and Adam seem like they’d be as different as chalk and cheese, but their personalities actually work well together. I like that Fran isn’t someone who has to be in charge all the time. She realizes that Adam has the skill set they need to work out the clues here, and she doesn’t hesitate to let him take the lead on that. She knows her strengths and is fine with letting others shine when it’s what works best. And even the minor characters, like Margaret, the family solicitor, are fleshed out nicely.
There were plenty of twists and turns in the story, and Davies kept me guessing until the end. I love a book where I can’t solve the mystery until the reveal smacks me in the head!
If you like a modern story with a unique premise and a cozy mystery that will have you second-guessing what you think at every turn, I highly recommend Death on the Menu!
About the author:
After a varied career, Emma Davies once worked for a design studio where she was asked to provide a fun and humorous (and not necessarily true) anecdote for their website. She wrote the following: ‘I am a bestselling novelist currently masquerading as a thirty something mother of three.’ Well the job in the design studio didn’t work out but she’s now a forty something mother of three and is happy to report the rest of her dream came true.
After many years as a finance manager she now writes full time, and is far happier playing with words than numbers. She lives with her husband, three children, and two guinea pigs in rural Shropshire where she writes in all the gaps in between real life. It’s a county she adores, her love of its beautiful people and landscapes providing endless inspiration for her books, and in fact the only thing that would make Shropshire more idyllic is if it were by the sea.
Pop over to her website www.emmadaviesauthor.com where, amongst other things, you can read about her passion for Pringles and singing loudly in the car. You can also wave to her on twitter @EmDaviesAuthor or find her on Facebook (a little too often than is good for her).