Never Trust a Skinny Cupcake Baker
by DE Haggerty
Date Published: April 11, 2016
A cozy mystery with a heap of laughs, a generous portion of romance, and just a smidgeon of suspense.
Callie’s life is rather awesome. She owns a successful bakery and teaches German literature at the local university. There’s just one tiny problem. She has no self-confidence when it comes to her body. And then there’s the little matter of her being accused of murdering her pole dancing instructor. There’s no way Callie’s going to risk losing her teaching position and thus she embarks, with her best baker bud Anna, on a journey to discover the real killer. Between stripper auditions and a detective who insists Callie is the woman of his dreams, it’s a roller coaster adventure. Cupcakes not included.
A cupcake + a pole dancer = murder.
A baker + death threats = mystery.
One hot detective + One year courtship = one big decision.
Callie whips up that tastiest cupcakes this side of town, and Detective Hottie sure loves being around her, especially after Callie and her ex broke up. Despite the attention she gets, she still feels insecure about her body. So she signs up for a pole dancing class and meets terror instructor, Dolly.
Dolly and Callie never gets along. The slim pole dancer often demeans Callie’s body and even her bakeshop. Things take a turn when cops arrest Callie for murder after her altercation with Dolly.
Detective Hottie aka Ben is sweet and determined. While other guys may have given up hope when their ladylove is already taken, Ben is the opposite. He is persistent, but not in the stalkerish kind. He really is so sweet with Callie that I could feel ants swarming my feet whenever he shows how much he loves her.
Sumptuous, delicious, mouth-watering, mystifying and mind boggling…. Murder mystery in the hands of a cupcake baker who only wishes to slim down. Would she go to great lengths to kill someone who humiliates her and degrades her?
One of the reasons why I love reading cozy mysteries is the thrill and chill I feel whenever murder is involved. I could never rightly guess the culprit or murderer in a story and it always left me wondering how in the heck I missed all the clues and such. It’s a thrill to read this book. You’d expect hilarious scenes from Callie and her best friend / business partner Anna. They’re one odd pair but clicks in every way.
D.E. Haggerty’s got a knack for writing funny cozy mysteries, and I loved the laughs I got from reading her latest offering. It is true what they say, never trust a skinny baker. Better go for the heavier girl, they’re better to hug and cuddle. Trust those who have curves and love handles to prove it.
Anna starts to fiddle with the lock, but it’s pretty clear she has no idea what she’s doing. My heart nearly jumps out of my chest when I hear the door behind me open. “What are you doing?”
I turn to stare at the man yelling at us and nearly fall down the stairs in surprise. He’s tall, way taller than Ben, although the kitten heels he’s wearing probably add several inches to his already impressive height. He’s wearing a pink flowered silk robe and his hair is in a hair net. Is that mascara he’s wearing?
I start to apologize for bothering him and take the first step down the stairs, but Anna interrupts my escape attempt.
“Oh thank goodness, you’re home.” She smiles up at him and flutters her lashes. “We’re in a bit of a jam.”
The neighbor crosses his arms over his chest causing the robe to drape open. His chest is completely hairless. I look down to see he’s wearing woman’s underwear. And not just some simple underwear from the local department store. This is the good silk and lace stuff. That can’t be cheap.
“Richard Wagner reportedly liked to wear women’s underwear made of silk and satin.” I can’t seem to help myself from blurting out random facts when I’m nervous.
He ignores me and demands, “What’s going on?” in a voice that makes it clear that although he may enjoy wearing woman’s clothing, he’s definitely a man who won’t be putting up with silly females.
“We’re at our wit’s end,” Anna says as she saunters up to him. Never one to acknowledge another’s personal space, she’s nearly rubbing up against him. With their difference in height, Anna’s chest is nearly aligned with the neighbor’s manly parts. I start to worry about the effect, if any, having Anna’s female attributes in such close quarters will have on the man’s underwear. “We’re trying to notify all of Dolly’s friends about the funeral, but those stupid police took her phone. We have no idea how to find her friends now.”
The man leans away from Anna and relaxes a tiny bit. “You’re friends of Dolly? I haven’t seen you around here before.”
“We know her from work,” I pipe up.
He raises an eyebrow at me and then proceeds to very obviously check out my assets. A smile lights up his face. “Yeah, I can see you working at Club Bristol.” He looks down at Anna and smirks. “But this little pink-haired one isn’t exactly the type.”
I nearly swallow my tongue and manage to stop myself from asking what Club Bristol is. He needs to think we work there as he obviously doesn’t know about Dolly’s job as a pole dancing instructor. Anna is much quicker on the uptake than me. “I work behind the scenes,” she says. “You know costume design and that sort of thing.” Does she actually know what Club Bristol is? Or is she guessing?
The neighbor nods as if it makes sense. I can only hope it does. “Sorry, I can’t help you. I don’t have a key to Dolly’s place.” He scoots back into his apartment. “I need to get some sleep. I had a late shift last night.” I wonder what kind of work he does. “Good luck.” And with that, he shuts his door, and I hear the lock click as well.
I grew up reading everything I could get my hands on from my mom’s Harlequin romances to Nancy Drew to Little Women. When I wasn’t flipping pages in a library book, I was penning horrendous poems, writing songs no one should ever sing, or drafting stories which have thankfully been destroyed. College and a stint in the U.S. Army came along, robbing me of free time to write and read, although I did manage every once in a while to sneak a book into my rucksack between rolled up socks, MRIs, t-shirts, and cold weather gear. A few years into my legal career, I was exhausted, fed up, and just plain done. I quit my job and sat down to write a manuscript, which I promptly hid in the attic after returning to the law. Another job change, this time from lawyer to B&B owner and I was again fed up and ready to scream I quit, which is incredibly difficult when you own the business. Thus, I shut the B&B during the week and in the off-season and started writing. Several books later I find myself in Istanbul writing full-time.