Author: Josi S. Kilpack
Publisher: Shadow Mountain
About the book: Sadie Hoffmiller has survived eighteen months of nonstop adventures filled with murder, deceit, and danger. She could really use some rest -- and maybe even some time to heal -- relaxing in the tropical paradise of Kaua'i. However, palm trees and sunshine are not as effective a medication as Sadie had hoped. And when she finds herself entangled -- literally -- with a dead body, she is forced to face the compounding fears and anxieties that are making her life so difficult to live.
Her determination to stay out of danger and to focus on overcoming her anxieties soon takes a backseat when she meets eleven-year-old Charlie, the son of the woman whose body she discovered near Anahola Beach. Charlie has some questions of his own about what happened to his mother, and he is convinced that only Sadie can help him. If only Sadie were as confident in her abilities as Charlie is.
With the help of her best friend and a local social worker, Sadie dives into another mystery with the hope that, at the end, she'll be able to find the peace and closure that has eluded her.
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About the author: Josi S. Kilpack hated to read until her mother handed her a copy of The Witch of Blackbird Pond when she was 13. From that day forward, she read everything she could get her hands on and accredits her writing “education” to the many novels she has “studied” since then. She began writing her first novel in 1998 and never stopped. Her novel, Sheep’s Clothing won the Whitney Award 2007 for Mystery/Suspense. Lemon Tart, the first book in the Sadie Hoffmiller
You can find Josi on the web at her blog and on twitter.
My thoughts: This was my first Sadie Hoffmiller mystery, and from what I can gather it is very different from the other mysteries. In this one, Sadie has had some pretty traumatic experiences over the last year and a half. She is suffering from depression and probaby post traumatic stress and has gone to Hawaii to try to relax and get back to her old self. After being there for a couple of months though, she is more anxious than ever and spends much of her time locked in her condo. On one of her few outings though, she has the misfortune of discovering a dead body. For a short time this throws her anxiety into overdrive -- until she is visited by Charlie, the preteen son of Noelani, the woman she discovered.
Something about needing to help Charlie find closure propels her to find out more about Noelani and how/why she died. The police, as well as many of the people who knew Noelani feels that it is a open and shut case of overdose. You see, Noelani is a recovering drug addict - but she had been clean for quite a while and was working to be reunited with Charlie. Sadie meets a variety of people in her quest, from a womanizing preacher and his beautiful, but jealous wife; Olie, the social worker assigned to Charlie's case, Noelani's fellow employees and boss at the Sand and Sea Motel. We get to go along with Sadie, as she begins to overcome her anxieties and fears and begins investigating Noelani on her own.
The suspects are wide and varied in this book and I even wondered if Noelani was the victim or not. It started off quickly and pulled me in, but I will admit that I got kind of bogged down in the middle and it seemed to drag for awhile. As it got closer to the end though, the twists kept coming and I had to find out what was really going on! I am definitely going to go back and find the first books in this culinary series.
Oh- and as a bonus - the book is filled with yummy recipes that I can't wait to try!
~I received a complimentary copy of this book from Tristi Pinkston Book Tours in exchange for my unbiased review.~
Publisher/Publication Date: Shadow Mountain, March 2012