“Death by Pumpkin Spice” by Alex Erickson


By Alex Erickson

The Bookstore Café Mystery series continues with this third installment. A smooth narrative where most of the characters are normal, down-to-earth folks, combined with suspects galore and twists and turns make this a great afternoon read.

Vickie Patterson and best friend Krissy Hancock own a combination coffee shop/bookstore called Death by Coffee, located in the picturesque village of Pine Hills. Will Foster, who is a local doctor, invites Krissy to a Halloween party being held at the mansion of recent widow, Margaret Yarborough.

Early in the evening, Quentin Pebbles proposes marriage to his girlfriend Jessica. Unfortunately for him, she turns him down and embarrasses him in front of all the guests. After a short while, Jessica, who happens to be dressed as Marilyn Monroe, is found strangled to death in a room that is filled with jack-o’-lanterns; her head has been turned at an angle and smashed into a pumpkin. All the signs point to a crime of passion at first because of the messed-up way she trounced Quentin’s proposal. However, when the hostess’s jewelry comes up missing, a robber may also play a large part in the crime of murder.

Police Officer Paul Dalton is a guest at the party. Because of a nasty storm there are road closures, and Officer Dalton seems to be the only lawman on hand to investigate the crime. He asks Krissy to help him out as no other officials are able to get to the crime scene and some of the guests have gone missing. Happy to help investigate, Krissy jumps on board to help find these mysteriously missing party-goers and, instead, finds herself in deep trouble.

It’s no surprise to say that Alex Erickson has created yet another mystery that is so much fun to read!

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