About the Book
Genre: Cozy Mystery, #3 in A Sweet Pepper Fire Brigade Mystery Series
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime Mystery
Release Date: January 2015
Synopsis from Goodreads...
Sweet Pepper, Tennessee, has the world’s hottest and sweetest peppers—as well as a ghost that cooks and a fire chief who fights crime…
SPARK OF INTEREST
Stella Griffin should be bubbling over with joy now that she’s the full-time fire chief of Sweet Pepper, except trouble is brewing on her doorstep. An angry resident has purchased her cabin, and—with a bulldozer in tow—is ready to tear it down. But as Stella worries over the fate of her home and Eric, her ghostly roommate, there’s soon an even greater cause for alarm.
A suspicious house fire in the pricey Sunset Beach community at Sweet Pepper Lake claims the life of ex-state representative Barney Falk. The nature of the death has Stella feeling out of her depth, so she teams up with the state’s arson investigator. Moving full steam ahead with the case, they must smoke out a killer before the firebug strikes again…
Fire Chief Stella Griffin is just starting to settle into her new position in Sweet Pepper, Tennessee. She’s excited and happy until a local resident purchases her cabin and is ready to tear it down. The cabin belonged to the original Sweet Pepper Fire Chief Eric Gamlyn and he still maintains his residence there, even though he’s been dead for a very long time. Stella didn’t think she believed in ghosts until she met Eric and now has a ghost for a roommate. Stella fears for Eric’s existence if the cabin is torn down. However, that’s exactly why Bob Floyd wants to tear it down, he fears the cabin is haunted.
As Stella fights for her new home, a fire breaks out in the expensive part of town. Former state representative, Barney Falk, is found dead and arson is feared. Stella is assigned the job of investigating the fire and is joined in the search by a state arson investigator. Suspicions mount as it’s looking more and more like murder everyday. It’s not long before Stella finds her own life on the line.
I have anxiously been awaiting for the release of this book. I adore this series. It’s action-packed, filled with drama, adventure, a dash of romance and a little bit of magic. This series has it all. Each book is written to perfection and this one is no exception. I devoured this one. I stayed up late into the night as I couldn’t sleep without knowing what was happening to Stella and her friends.
It’s a fast-paced book with endearing characters. Readers will truly care what happens to the people of Sweet Pepper. The book even includes sweet pepper recipes, although I haven’t tried any. The author sneakily leaves us with a huge cliffhanger at the end and now I’m counting the minutes until the next book in this wonderful series. I just wish there was a way for Stella and ghost Eric to get together :)
FTC Disclosure: The author/publisher provided me with a copy of this book to review for this blog tour. This did not influence my thoughts and opinions in any way. All opinions expressed are my own.
Author Guest Post
Living in Sweet Pepper
By Stella Griffin
Living in Sweet Pepper, Tennessee is a lot different than living in Chicago where I grew up – I can tell you that. It took me a while to get used to the differences, and even appreciate them, but now that I have, I can’t imagine living anywhere else.
Take eating biscuits instead of rolls or toast. I never thought I’d like biscuits. Now I can’t stay away from them. I have to work out just to be able to eat biscuits, and still fit in my dress uniform. The biscuits they make at the Sweet Pepper Café are the best. I could eat their egg biscuits every day.
Another thing that was weird to get used to – men holding doors and chairs for me. Back home, sometimes you had to fight to get in the door if a man wanted to get in there first. In Sweet Pepper, men will stand there and wait for you to reach the door so they can hold it for you. They always hold chairs for you to sit down (even men you work with), and they open car doors too. I wasn’t sure what to think about that when I first got here. I was even a little offended by it, but not anymore. It’s very pleasant, even though I do feel a little old fashioned when it happens.
There are dozens of events going on here. The Sweet Pepper Festival contributes a lot to that since people work on it all year round. But there are also square dances, barbecues, charity runs – it’s something all the time. I’m not much of a dancer, but no one seems to mind that I never danced until I moved here.
I guess what I’m saying is that I love Sweet Pepper. It has its drawbacks – shopping isn’t close by, you have to drive forever to get places, and nothing is open after eight p.m. But people are friendly and happy for the most part. They worry about their neighbors and want their town to be a better place. I didn’t think you could take the city out of the firefighter but I guess you can.
Maybe there has always been a little Sweet Pepper in my soul and I just never knew it. I’m proud that this is my home now, and that I’m the fire chief. I’m proud of my fire brigade who works hard for very little recognition and no money.
Just another reason that Sweet Pepper is the best!
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