Pastry chef Sophia Cummings had it all: her dream job in New York, her
dream guy, and plans for them to open their own restaurant. That all
went up in smoke when she walked in on her boyfriend with the maĂ®tre
d'. Now Sophia's back in her hometown of Bucolic Rumford, Kentucky,
nursing her broken heart and baking for the locals. Sophia agrees to
bake her high school friend Charlotte's wedding cake using the
Rumford Country Club's kitchen but encounters a stumbling block
when the body of the club's chef is found with a skillet next to it.
With the country club down a chef, the manager of the club, Evelyn,
who gave Sophia her first job, convinces Sophia to fill in for the interim.
Sophia has more than cooking on her mind though because Evelyn has
become the handsome sheriff's number one suspect and Sophia is
determined to prove her innocence. The more Sophia digs into Chef
Emile's life, the more reasons she's finding for someone to kill him.
Between the tormented staff at the club and the members, Emile
rubbed the wrong way with his non-southern menus, Sophia's list of
suspects keeps growing but if she doesn't figure out who the killer is
soon, she just might be next.
CAKE AND PUNISHMENT is a
delightful start to a new series by Maymee Bell. Bell does a great job of
infusing southern charm into the story along with some delicious
sounding pastries. The quirky secondary characters are amusing,
especially Sophia's mom Bitsy, and the chemistry between Sophia and
the sheriff will have you rooting for a love story for the two. I love how
Sophia can't seem to say no to anyone and how everyone just assumes
she's back for good. This southern who-done-it is a wonderful start to
a new series that'll leave you craving something sweet. I can't wait to
see what book two has in store for us.
Bucolic Rumford, Kentucky has glowing fields of
bluegrass, a fine selection of bourbons, and now a
professional pastry chef. Broken-hearted Sophia Cummings
has come home from New York City. Sheâ€™s not there a
minute before sheâ€™s charmed into making her high school
friend Charlotteâ€™s wedding cake. The kitchen at the
Rumford Country Club seems perfect until Chef Emileâ€™s
body is discovered, sprawled near the stove, a cast iron
skillet on the floor close by.
With one look at the shiny, new frying pan, Sophia knows
itâ€™s not Emileâ€™s. She offers her knowledge to Sheriff
Carter and her talents to Evelyn, the manager, who needs
an interim chef. The mood in the country club is grim:
Emileâ€™s peppery personality had burned members and staff
alike. Sophia wonders which one of them burned him?