This is the first book in the Spice Shop series written by Gail Oust. I had heard of this series but when I was browsing the Libby app (powered by Overture, the library app) on my iPad yesterday, I ran across the first in this series and thought, why not? I’ve been curious about it anyway. I was so glad I borrowed this book, it was really good. Check out my Goodreads review!
My Goodreads review:
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I’d been curious about this series since a new one had recently come out but it was such a long-running series, I decided to start at the beginning and read this one when I found it on the Overdrive library app. I quickly became engrossed in this little Georgia town with all its quirky, gossipy characters. It was definitely a well-written, well-thought out plot and I didn’t guess the killer until the author started the reveal. The showdown was pretty exciting.
Piper Prescott had just gotten divorced from her husband who was now dating a girl who was 24 years old. CJ and Piper shared a son, Chad, and a high school freshman, Lindsey. They were on fairly good terms but Piper had no patience for the girl CJ was dating who was nearly half her own age…and his.
Piper’s new shop, Spice It Up!, was slowly becoming popular in the small town and she was hoping that a local chef named Mario would come and do a recipe demonstration to help tell people about spices she had available. When she found an injured puppy, it led her to eventually going into Mario’s restaurant and finding his very dead body. New police chief McBride seemed obsessed with wanting to charge Piper with the crime, so she and her bestie, Reba Mae (who honestly made me think of the singer with the same first name) started investigating the others who would have a reason to want Mario out of the picture.
There were a lot of characters in the book but as I read, some of them were minor players and I found out the more major ones weren’t really hard to keep track of after all. I just loved Reba Mae, Piper’s best friend! What’s not to love about a sassy Southerner for a best friend? Being a hairdresser gave her access to all the town’s best gossip and sometimes it even came in handy. I really liked Dr. Doug Winters, the local veterinarian who patched up the injured puppy that Piper ended up adopting. They seem like a cute couple…but then there is also something interesting developing between Piper and the police chief, once he figured out she wasn’t guilty, that is.
I know I want to keep reading this series. Melly, CJ’s mom was such a hoot! She could be a snooty woman of wealth but I loved that she was willing to watch the store for Piper whenever she needed her. I think that Piper made a lot of headway with her daughter, Lindsey, too and that despite being a teen spoiled by her rich daddy, Lindsey will turn out just fine.