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Earthy Delights A Corinna Chapman Mystery.

Earthy Delights A Corinna Chapman Mystery

Kerry Greenwood

Poisoned Pen Press

6962 E. First Ave Ste 103, Scottsdale, AZ 85251

9781590583937 $25.95

I'm not sure what caused me to pick Earthly Delights up off the shelf. Maybe it was the title. Earthly delights sounds yummy. Maybe it was the artisan bread on the book's cover, I was hungry while perusing the shelves in the library. Whatever it was, after reading the first few paragraphs, I knew I was in for a treat. Ms. Greenwood, the author, writes in a first person voice that is engaging..

"Suppressing an unworthy thought that he carefully positioned his tail so that I would stand on it and then spend ten minutes apologizing to him, I spent ten minutes apologizing to him--poor kitty! Did the big fat woman stomp on his innocent stripy tail? I would see if a little milk would assuage his sense of insult."

Corrina Chapman, the main character, shares (in a mockingly contemptuous manner) her view of the business world's manner of dress, hierarchy, and subservient environment, glad to be rid of the heels, the skirts, and the boss--now that she wakes at the unforgiving hour of 4am to work alone, but as owner of her own bakery shop.

Her life is a pleasant routine until her intrigue was piqued by yesterday's mail, which included a letter accusing Corrina of being a "Scarlet Woman," and then telling her "that the wages of sin are death." Instead of being afraid, Corrina found it weird.

From that incident, Corrina's routine was even more disturbed. One of her "Mouse Patrol" cats, Heckle, scrambled in from outdoors with a syringe in his paw. Corrina raced outside to confront the junkie, only to find a skinny young girl whose face was a dark blue. As her "skin tries to crawl off and find a more compassionate human," Corrina set up safety measures and started CPR on the young girl.

The girl survives, the first blessing, and Daniel Cohen walks into her life, the second blessing. Her life is about to take some strange turns in discovering more about herself and her capacity as "a compassionate human," as she helps solve not one, but two mysteries in her little part of Melbourne, Australia.

Author Kerry Greenwood spins a rich story, written in a humorous, self-effacing manner. You cheer when Jason, a fifteen-year old street urchin Corrina has accepted into her fold, smiles at his creation of a new-flavored muffin, cringe when you learn the multiple uses for a syringe, and crumble defenses like a flaky croissant when you hear how Daniel feels about Corrina. The neighbors of Corrina are one's you'd enjoy having at your place, well, maybe not one or two or three of them.

A fun read as you try to figure out who's sending the threatening letters and who's killing the city's junkies. The rising emotions of Corrina are hot enough to bake bread without the oven. Also fun is Ms. Greenwood's style of writing which makes you feel as if you're right there in the room with all the goings-on. I look forward to reading her other books.

Lorraine Morgan Scott


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Author:Scott, Lorraine Morgan
Publication:Reviewer's Bookwatch
Article Type:Book review
Date:Sep 1, 2009
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