The Down South Café Mystery series is off to a fantastic start! The author is Gayle Leeson, who also writes cozies under the pen names Gayle Trent and Amanda Lee. It was one of her earlier books that got me hooked on the cozy mystery genre, so I was excited to give THE CALAMITY CAFÉ a read.
Amy Flowers is a budding chef with hopes of opening her own restaurant, but for now she’s stuck waitressing for one of the meanest people in town. When Amy offers to buy the diner, her boss, Lou Lou, flat out refuses. Amy never dreamed that soon after, her ill-tempered boss would become the victim of killer.
This book had all the elements that I love in a cozy. The crime took place early on, and the plot stayed focused on the investigation, while weaving in Amy’s delicious Southern cooking and her pursuit of opening her own café. Lou Lou had many enemies, so figuring out whodunit wasn’t easy. Fun cast of characters, and some nice laughs along the way. A little romance too. I’m looking forward to seeing what comes next for Amy and the folks of Winter Garden, Virginia. 4.5 stars!
Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.