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Long Island Iced Tina: 03/10/21
Long Island Iced Tina by Maria DiRico is the second of the Catering Hall mysteries. Mia Carina is planning a baby shower at Belle View for her friend Nicole. The problem is Nicole's stepmother, Tina. She has a well deserved terrible reputation. What Tina isn't expecting is to have her found dead in the water near the catering hall. Before Tina's murder, she was shocked by the unexpected extra shower gift, a painting that's been missing for two decades.
Mia's catering know-how, combined with her mob ties, means she can spot when something isn't right. Her goal this time is figuring out how the returned painting relates to Tina's murder, and how both might relate to some shady business at a rival catering hall.
In the midst of running Belle View and investigating Tina's murder and the decade's old heist, Mia is learning how to drive. These moments provide some necessary levity in an otherwise faced paced, multi-threaded mystery.
The mystery while more complex than many of the cozies I've read, provides enough clues amongst the red herrings to make putting everything together possible and satisfying. Long Island Iced Tina is enjoyably similar to Lost and Fondue by Avery Aames (2011) and Once Upon a Spine by Kate Carlisle (2017).
The third in the series is It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Murder. It releases October 26, 2021.