MURDER UNCORKED is the first tantalizing full-length mystery in the new CeCe Barton Mystery series by bestselling author Maddie Day. CeCe was first introduced in the Christmas novella collection, CHRISTMAS MITTENS MURDER. After moving from L.A. to the wine country community of Colinas, CA, CeCe is happy living near her twin sister and nephews, but she’s not so happy when a customer winds up murdered after a night of drinking at Vino y Vida, the wine bar she manages.
Vincent Sardo worked for the Vineyard Valley Association and was known for being obnoxious, but when he winds up dead in his apartment, everyone in town is stunned. CeCe had just served the man the night before in her wine bar. Who would want Vincent dead? CeCe soon learns that Vincent’s ex-wife is the new sales clerk at the bookstore next door. Inez Sardo is quite the character, and she doesn’t have a lot of good things to say about Vincent. Furthermore, Nico Rispoli, the museum director and CeCe’s boss, seems to have his own issues surrounding a land feud with the dead man. As CeCe digs deeper for clues, Sheriff Detective Sergeant Kelly Daniell is watching her every move. As a killer and wildfires threaten the Colinas community, CeCe worries her new home and community are in some serious trouble. Can she find a killer and restore peace in Colinas?
MURDER UNCORKED is a fun, fast-paced, expertly plotted, and entertaining mystery. CeCe is an interesting character dealing with widowhood, an estranged daughter, a new home, and creating a life in her forties. She is finding a sense of community in Colinas and considering dating again. The pacing is quick with sustained action, good clues and revelations, and a nice denouement. Her twin sister, Allie, is a good complementary character to CeCe. The twins share a special bond but lead different lives. The setting of the wine bar adjacent to a historical museum provides the perfect ambiance for this series set in wine country. Grab a glass of your favorite wine or non-alcoholic beverage and settle in and enjoy MURDER UNCORKED.
Raise a glass to Cece Barton, a widowed single mom and recent L.A. transplant to California wine country, who suddenly finds herself at the center of a murder investigation in this sparkling new mystery series from Agatha Award–winning and national bestselling author Maddie Day.
As the manager of Vino y Vida Wine Bar in Colinas, Cecelia “Cece” Barton’s first Alexander Valley harvest is a whirlwind of activity. Her twin sister, Allie Halstead, who owns a nearby Victorian bed & breakfast, is accustomed to the hustle and bustle of peak tourist season. But Cece barely has a moment to enjoy her new home in between worrying about her estranged college-age daughter, juggling her responsibilities at the bar, and navigating the sticky politics of the local wine association. Just when it seems things can’t grow any more intense, Colinas is rocked by a murder within the wine community . . . and Cece is identified as a possible suspect!
With her reputation and her livelihood on the line—and the Sonoma County deputy sheriff breathing down her neck—Cece has no choice but to open up her own murder investigation. Tensions are already high in the valley, as a massive wildfire creeps toward Colinas, threatening homes, vineyards, and the vital tourist trade. And now, with a murderer on the loose, and Cece’s sleuthing exposing the valley’s bitterest old rivalries and secret new alliances, Colinas feels ready to pop! But with Allie’s help, Cece is determined to catch the killer and clear her name before everything she’s worked so hard for goes up in flames . . .