If you like intelligent amateur sleuths who successfully juggle family, business and community, try Leslie Budewitz' Food Lovers' Village mysteries. The fourth in the series, Treble at the Jam Fest, even has a community jazz festival and recipes. Something for everyone.
Erin Murphy manages her family's general store, Murphy's Mercantile, in Jewel Bay, Montana. She's also involved in the community as head of the Village Merchant's Association. It's a natural fit for the Merc to kick off the annual Jazz Festival with a small preview in the back courtyard. The audience members may not have noticed the tension between the headliner and a couple musicians. But, Erin observed a couple unpleasant moments. So, it doesn't come as a shock when the man is found dead the next morning. But, Erin's boyfriend, Adam, and his childhood best friend, Tanner, found the body. And, Tanner saw someone push him to his death.
No one except Erin and the police seem to care that the man is dead. But, people do urge Erin to do something about it because they don't want the notoriety affecting the festival. Erin juggles the training of a new staff member with her roles as supportive friend and girlfriend. She has a lot on her plate in her personal life, along with her role as amateur sleuth.
Erin is an appealing amateur sleuth. She's intelligent, with good business sense. She even uses a spreadsheet, the "Spreadsheet of Suspense", to analyze the mystery. She supports the decisions made by her mother and former best friend. And, when her boyfriend faces a dramatic change in his life, she struggles to accept it, and find a way to support him as well. But, it takes Tanner to point out to her that she takes foolish risks, placing herself in danger.
Anyone who appreciates the community life in cozy mysteries, and an intelligent amateur investigator, might want to check out Treble at the Jam Fest. You might find yourself singing the praises of author Leslie Budewitz.
Leslie Budewitz' website is www.LeslieBudewitz.com
Treble at the Jam Fest by Leslie Budewitz. Midnight Ink. 2017. ISBN 9780738752402 (paperback), 312p.
FTC Full Disclosure - I received the book to review for a journal.