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Catch Me If You Candy

The 17th book in Ellie Alexander's Bakeshop Mysteries featuring amateur sleuth and caterer Juliet Capshaw is all set for Halloween! I love this series and was very excited to read this, and it did not disappoint!

One of the things I enjoy most about this series is the sense of place. Ellie Alexander's writing is vivid and descriptive, even making the baked goods Juliet whips up seem almost like you can smell them baking. These books transport you to the picturesque small town of Ashland, Oregon, a real place known for its Shakespeare Festival and America's oldest Elizabethan theatre. And the Shakespeare Festival plays a role in this story as an end-of-festival Halloween parade ends with a dead body just outside Juliet (Jules) Capshaw's bakeshop, Torte. Throw in canines who perform at the theatre and their squabbling stage moms, an antique mahjong set carrying a cryptic note, and suspects with links to Juliet's mom, and this is a fun one!

This series is populated with great characters, and their relationships are endearing. From Juliet's sweet romance with her husband, Carlos, to the supportive and loving ones with her mom, step-father, family, and friends, this group is fun to spend time with and see how their lives evolve from book to book. The mystery in this one has enough misdirection to keep you guessing about the motive and the identity of the murderer. And, as always, it is fun to sleuth alongside the likable Jules. The food and coffee descriptions are mouth-watering, and the dogs in the story are such an adorable touch! If you're looking for a charming culinary cozy mystery with Fall vibes and Halloween festivities, add this to your spooky season tbr!

Thank you to St. Martin's Press and Minotaur Books for the opportunity to review this ARC. I enjoyed it!

My steep was Queen of the Harvest from Club Magic Hour. An organic rooibos/honeybush blend with pumpkin, vanilla, and warming spices. This herbal tea also features ashwagandha for relaxation benefits. I love to curl up and read with a cup of this- sometimes with an added splash of coconut milk!


Halloween has arrived in picturesque Ashland, Oregon, and all of the ghouls and goblins have descended on Main Street for the annual parade. It's a giant street party and Torte is right in the mix.

Jules Capshaw and her team have been baking up autumn delights and trick-or-Torte bags filled with sugar cookie cutouts, spiced cider, and mummy munch. It's the end of the season at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, which means that the costumes for the parade are going to be out of this world. The elaborate guises even extend to pets. The grand marshal of this year's parade is no other than a regal pug aptly named King George. Jules is delighted to get to share the experience with Carlos and Ramiro, but things take a dark turn when she discovers a dragon slumped in front of the bakeshop.

Jules is distraught when she realizes the dragon is dead. She's also shaken because a few days before the parade, her mother's Mahjong partner Helen discovered a warning note about a dragon in an antique game set. Jules hopes it's just a random coincidence, but as the clues begin to unfold it becomes evident that there's been a murder on All Hallow's Eve. Can Juliet sift out the truth before the killer comes after her?

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