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The Air-Conditioned Nightmare by Henry Miller
The Ballad of Ami Miles by Kristy Dallas Alley
Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
Bloodroot by Susan Wittig Albert
Chili Cauldron Curse by Lynn Cahoon
Crow by Candace Robinson and Amber R Duell
Curiosity Thrilled the Cat by Sofie Kelly
Death Gone A-Rye by Winnie Archer
Death of an English Muffin by Victoria Hamilton
Farm to Trouble by Amanda Flower
Foul Play at the Fair by Shelley Freydont
Hearts by Hilma Wolitzer
House of Cards by Michael Dobbs
The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros
The Last Book Party by Karen Dukess
Little Bookshop of Murder by Maggie Blackburn and Christa Lewis (Narrator)
Montauk by Nicola Harrison
Nightschool: The Weirn Books Collector's Edition, Volume 2 by Svetlana Chmakova
On Borrowed Crime by Kate Young and Dina Pearlman (Narrator)
Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield
Over the Woodward Wall by A. Deborah Baker
A Playdate With Death by Ayelet Waldman
The Printed Letter Bookshop by Katherine Reay
Sabrina: Something Wicked by Kelly Thompson and Veronica Fish (illustrator)
A Side of Murder by Amy Pershing
To Know You're Alive by Dakota McFadzean
This is Munich by Miroslav Sasek
Those People by Louise Candlish
Unplugged by Gordon Korman
A Witch's Printing Office, Volume 2 by Mochinchi and Yasuhiro Miyama
Wondercat Kyuu-Chan Volume 1 by Sasami Nitori

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5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

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Chili Cauldron Curse: 05/17/21

Chili Cauldron Curse

Chili Cauldron Curse by Lynn Cahoon is the prequel to One Poison Pie. In the first full length mystery from the Kitchen Witch mystery series we're given glimpses into events that lead to Mia Malone and her ex-boyfriend's sister moving to Magic Falls, Idaho. This novella is a short mystery that takes place just before those events.

Mia and her still boyfriend's sister meet in Magic Falls to help clean and organize a food pantry that has been receiving deliveries without anyone to manage it. The place is full of rotting fruit and other formerly fresh food and canned and dried goods that need sorting and inventorying. On the second morning of working through the backlog, Mia discovers the body of her grandmother's boyfriend.

Chili Cauldron Curse has only nine chapters. For the first seven, the pacing is similar to a longer mystery. What's different here is the abruptness of the ending. There's a point where Mia is confronted by the murder. In a longer book, she would either be captured and later manage to escape, or she would manage to talk her way out of the situation to postpone the final confrontation. Here, though, rescue comes quickly because the authorities aren't corrupt nor are they incompetent.

There's another novella immediately following One Poison Pie, Murder 101, which released in ebook format on April 27, 2021.

Four stars

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