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Murder in the Cookbook Nook

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The witty new story from the bestselling author of The Secret Book & Scone Society series is perfect for bibliophiles who love a A Bookish Cook-Off with a little murder on the side… Six chefs are preparing to compete in an outdoor tent at Storyton Hall in Virginia for prizes that will boost their careers—but is there someone who can’t stand the heat? It looks that way The witty new story from the bestselling author of The Secret Book & Scone Society series is perfect for bibliophiles who love a A Bookish Cook-Off with a little murder on the side… Six chefs are preparing to compete in an outdoor tent at Storyton Hall in Virginia for prizes that will boost their careers—but is there someone who can’t stand the heat? It looks that way when one of the contestants is found dead in a pantry packed with two centuries’ worth of cookbooks, among other treasures and rarities. Could there be a connection to other recent events in town, like tampering with the costume of a local mascot? Jane isn’t sure, but after someone serves a second course of murder, the kitchen must be closed and the killer must be found . . .


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The witty new story from the bestselling author of The Secret Book & Scone Society series is perfect for bibliophiles who love a A Bookish Cook-Off with a little murder on the side… Six chefs are preparing to compete in an outdoor tent at Storyton Hall in Virginia for prizes that will boost their careers—but is there someone who can’t stand the heat? It looks that way The witty new story from the bestselling author of The Secret Book & Scone Society series is perfect for bibliophiles who love a A Bookish Cook-Off with a little murder on the side… Six chefs are preparing to compete in an outdoor tent at Storyton Hall in Virginia for prizes that will boost their careers—but is there someone who can’t stand the heat? It looks that way when one of the contestants is found dead in a pantry packed with two centuries’ worth of cookbooks, among other treasures and rarities. Could there be a connection to other recent events in town, like tampering with the costume of a local mascot? Jane isn’t sure, but after someone serves a second course of murder, the kitchen must be closed and the killer must be found . . .

30 review for Murder in the Cookbook Nook

  1. 5 out of 5

    Judy

    All my favorite elements came together in this book: food, mystery, romance - what more could you want? And get this - it's set in a literary hotel, Storyton Hall in Virginia. The hotel is filled with books and all the rooms have literary names and themes. I would love to stay there! The hotel is run by Jane Steward, who is the guardian of the all the rare books at Storyton Hall. The hotel is hosting a cooking competition featuring six renowned chefs. One of the chefs is found murdered in the pa All my favorite elements came together in this book: food, mystery, romance - what more could you want? And get this - it's set in a literary hotel, Storyton Hall in Virginia. The hotel is filled with books and all the rooms have literary names and themes. I would love to stay there! The hotel is run by Jane Steward, who is the guardian of the all the rare books at Storyton Hall. The hotel is hosting a cooking competition featuring six renowned chefs. One of the chefs is found murdered in the pantry off the kitchen. There's a sense of foreboding following the death, as the murderer hasn't been found, but the competition continues. There are several suspects. An engaging mystery with great characters, lots of food, and a literary backdrop. I truly enjoyed spending time at Storyton Hall and look forward to visiting again. Thanks to Kensington Books through Netgalley for an advance copy.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Peggy R

    This is one of my favorite cozy mystery series. Every book is a new adventure for the reader. I love the premise of the series - Jane and her family are the guardians of old and rare books. It's always interesting to see how her role as the Guardian of Storyton Hall puts her in conflict with her role as manager of the retreat. The author does a great job providing her readers with new and interesting plots revolving around books. This time around, it is a reality cooking competition that is film This is one of my favorite cozy mystery series. Every book is a new adventure for the reader. I love the premise of the series - Jane and her family are the guardians of old and rare books. It's always interesting to see how her role as the Guardian of Storyton Hall puts her in conflict with her role as manager of the retreat. The author does a great job providing her readers with new and interesting plots revolving around books. This time around, it is a reality cooking competition that is filming at Storyton Hall with plenty that goes wrong. A fire, a murder, and an explosion are just some of what Jane has to deal with while keeping her guests safe. The characters in this story are well-written, diverse, and dimensional. Ms. Adams continues to evolve them in all aspects, personally, professionally, and for some romantically. The Cover Girls always provide Jane with assistance given the group is so diverse in age and experience. This time around, the author gives her readers a lovely surprise - we get to revisit with Olivia Limoges and Chef Michael from her Books By the Bay series (which was one of my early introductions to this author). Fin and Hem are growing up fast and I love how the boys are curious, smart, protective of their mom, and still retain some of the innocence of childhood. Jane's relationship with Edwin is progressing well and I like how the author writes their partnership. The mystery is well done. There are several suspects to choose from and will keep the reader guessing until the climactic reveal at the end. The reason behind all the problems with the cooking competition does have a darker theme than most cozy mysteries, but I applaud the author for using it and shining a light on these issues. I am a big fan of this series, so I will return to Storyton Hall whenever this author has another adventure to share. I voluntarily read a digital advanced reader copy provided to me by the publisher, Kensington Books, through Netgalley. The thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Morin

    As I prepared to dive into this book, I had no idea that I was going on a wild roller coaster ride. As Jane Steward, guardian of the treasures at Storyton Hall, prepares for the filming of a literary themed cook off, she, too, has no idea of the escapades she’s about to encounter. The cook off seems simple enough, but the the undercurrent of emotions is felt by everyone, and before long, Jane and The Fins are wrapped up in another murder investigation. For me, the best part of this story was the ap As I prepared to dive into this book, I had no idea that I was going on a wild roller coaster ride. As Jane Steward, guardian of the treasures at Storyton Hall, prepares for the filming of a literary themed cook off, she, too, has no idea of the escapades she’s about to encounter. The cook off seems simple enough, but the the undercurrent of emotions is felt by everyone, and before long, Jane and The Fins are wrapped up in another murder investigation. For me, the best part of this story was the appearance of an old friend, Olivia Limoges, and her standard poodle, Captain Haviland. Ms. Limoges was the protagonist in another series written by Ellery Adams. It was so nice to see a friendship begin with Olivia and the ladies of Storyton Hall, I hope to see her again.

  4. 5 out of 5

    JoAn

    Murder in the Cookbook Nook by Ellery Adams once again returns readers to Storyton Hall in Virginia and there is nothing that I like better than being there with Jane, the Fins, Mrs. Hubbard and Edison. I love this series and I was thrilled to see a new one is soon to be released. I was delighted to see Olivia Limoges and Captain Haviland visiting Storyton Hall since Ms. Adams series starring Olivia had ended quite some time ago. The story moves quickly with a long list of characters that might h Murder in the Cookbook Nook by Ellery Adams once again returns readers to Storyton Hall in Virginia and there is nothing that I like better than being there with Jane, the Fins, Mrs. Hubbard and Edison. I love this series and I was thrilled to see a new one is soon to be released. I was delighted to see Olivia Limoges and Captain Haviland visiting Storyton Hall since Ms. Adams series starring Olivia had ended quite some time ago. The story moves quickly with a long list of characters that might have personal reasons for murder. As the story progressed and Jane and the Fins investigated it seemed that there were more threads to the events than a murderous desire.It was so difficult to put the book down once I opened the first page, the twists and red herrings kept me guessing and I was completely off base as to who had "done it" at the reveal. I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book from Kensington Books via NetGalley. All of the above opinions are my own.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Dawn Michelle

    **A note before the review** I read a lot of ARC's and have learned to navigate around the occasional wonky formatting, misspelled word, poor to nonexistent grammar and punctuation and the occasional missing word. It is what you do when you get an uncorrected proof. That said, I do think, that as an ARC reader, we do have a certain expectation that we are going to get the full book, edited or not, and that we will be able to read it and review it without wondering what we might have missed. This **A note before the review** I read a lot of ARC's and have learned to navigate around the occasional wonky formatting, misspelled word, poor to nonexistent grammar and punctuation and the occasional missing word. It is what you do when you get an uncorrected proof. That said, I do think, that as an ARC reader, we do have a certain expectation that we are going to get the full book, edited or not, and that we will be able to read it and review it without wondering what we might have missed. This was not the case with this book. To start, the cast of characters at the beginning of the book are from the previous book. Which seems problematic to me. And then the book starts and it is just one problem after another; like I said, I totally understand the occasional missing word etc, but in this case, there were missing sentences [and if there weren't, then what I was reading made absolutely no sense, and I HIGHLY doubt that an amazing author such as Ms. Adams is would write such confusion], missing words that made the conversations...wonky, and at several points, I am absolutely sure there had to be missing paragraphs as you jump from one thing to another and there is absolutely no flow and you just know that you have missed something that would have explained things more. And the most distressing thing is, that this happens on almost every page. It made for a very disconcerting and to be honest, disappointing read. If it had been any other author and not one I have read extensively and adore, I would have abandoned ship. It is a huge credit to Ms. Adams' writing and storytelling that I was both able to finish this book AND enjoy it as much as I did [even while banging my head in frustration]. I can only hope that the publisher and editors caught all of the mistakes in this ARC and that the final product is what it should be. Why am I mentioning this at all? Because it DOES hinder your reading experience when you are trying to fill in sentences [from missing words], trying to figure out what you might have missed to due to [what must be] missing paragraphs and trying to figure out what some words were due to misspelling to a degree I have never seen. Would I have liked this book more [like 5 stars more] if I had not had this reading experience? I don't know. Perhaps. All I know is it took me longer than normal to read this and my experience with a book I have been waiting a year for, was less than it should have been. **REVIEW** Reality TV is coming to Storyton Hall. Given the opportunity to get more publicity for the Hall, Jane allows a reality cooking show to come and put on a competition. Unfortunately, it starts badly with a deliberately set fire and just goes terribly downhill from there. There is a lot to love about this book - Jane and Edwin and the boys spend a lot of time together in this book and it is just so beautiful to see. Edwin has been home for some time and it has helped them become a more cohesive unit. His love for Hem and Fitz really shows and I just love that. As a child of several step-parents, I know how important that relationship can be [and also how badly it can go] and I admire Ms. Adams' way of writing it. It is very true to life. The Cover Girls are in this, but more briefly than they normally are. It was still very good to see them and they surely help save the day during the reveal. Olivia Limoges and Captain Havilland. O M GOSH I had forgotten how much I L O V E D this character and her pup and how much I had missed her. It was like a breath of fresh air to have her in this book and I love how her being there both helps Jane [and I LOVE that they are now friends - how glorious. MORE books with Olivia making an appearance please] AND helps Olivia [(view spoiler)[ I had forgotten how the last book of the Books by the Bay series had ended and when I went and revisited it, I was sad all over again. I love that this visit to Storyton Hall helps Olivia heal some from that loss (hide spoiler)] ] as well. Plus we get to see Chef Michel and her support of him and Jane and Company learning to love him and his cooking as much as Olivia does. I knew who the killer was early on and I thought the reveal was good because it makes you think you were wrong [I was not] but also introduces another aspect to the story [that you find out more about in the Epilogue] that was very good. So even though I knew who the killer was, the writing was so well done that it didn't take away from the story [the only thing that did was addressed in the note above; I need to reiterate just how much that affected the reading experience of this book. SO. MUCH. FRUSTRATION.] This book touches on so many things that affect people every single day today and it was good to have reminders of social issues alongside a mystery. I have said this before and it applies here - Ellery Adams writes books that are right on the cusp of being a cozy and being a regular mystery. Her willingness to NOT shy away from sensitive topics and uncomfortable scenarios makes her books even better to read and makes me love them move with each publication. It truly says a lot about how great the author's writing is that I [and everyone else that read this and never mentioned the issues I did] was able to read this and love it as much as I did. **SIDE NOTE** I highly suggest diving into her "Books by the Bay" series, one to learn more about Olivia and her beloved dog and two, to read another REALLY excellent series. Thank you to NetGalley, Ellery Adams and Kensington Books for providing this ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Cheryl

    An outdoor tent on the Storyton Hall is the setting for a cooking contest with several chefs competing. The winner will get fame, money, and other prizes. Right from the start things are going wrong, a fire on the set, the gas grill exploding and finally a murder. Jane is worried about her family, the hall and protecting the people visiting.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Fred

    Murder In The Cookbook Nook is the seventh book in the Book Retreat Mysteries series by Ellery Adams. Since the beginning of her writing career, I have been reading Adams’ books, starting with The Supper Club Mysteries written as J. B. Stanley and have read almost all of her books since then. She is a beautiful storyteller. Her books are very descriptive, well-written, and plotted so that you envision being there as you read. She also does an excellent job developing intriguing, engaging, and bel Murder In The Cookbook Nook is the seventh book in the Book Retreat Mysteries series by Ellery Adams. Since the beginning of her writing career, I have been reading Adams’ books, starting with The Supper Club Mysteries written as J. B. Stanley and have read almost all of her books since then. She is a beautiful storyteller. Her books are very descriptive, well-written, and plotted so that you envision being there as you read. She also does an excellent job developing intriguing, engaging, and believable characters that I would love to call my friends. This book definitely reinforced these feelings. Jane Steward’s book-related retreat, Storyton Hall, is the site for a cooking competition, Posh Palate with Mia Mallet. Malletisa billionaire trendsetter and social media influencer. Mullet can be demanding but is willing to compensate for her demands. For the Posh Palate show, six of America’s very best chefs have been brought in for the cooking show. On the day that the filming crew is setting up, Jane and her twin boys, Hem(Hemingway) and Fitz(Fitzgerald) are bicycling back from a visit to the nearby village of Storyton when they notice smoke in the distance. They soon realize that it is coming from the archery field at Storyton Hall and head there to see the problem. When they arrive, they soon find that it was a minor grass fire. The fire could have been much worse, as it was near the tent set for the cooking. It will soon be learned that someone might be trying to sabotage the cooking competition, as a fire investigator finds the electrical writing has been miswired. The next evening, Chef Pierce, who throughout the day had been rude to most of the other chefs and having spent most of the evening drinking, finds his way to the inn’s kitchen, where he groups the pastry chef. Mia is immediately notified of his action and has her personal assistant deliver a note that he is no longer in the competition. The following day when he fails to show up at breakfast, he is found in his room dead. Two days later, in the middle of the cooking competition, an odor of gas is noticed. The program director momentarily blocks the fire safety advisor, Mr. Gilmore, from shutting off the offending stove. Just as Gilmore gets free and reaches the grill, it explodes in a big ball of flame. Gilmore is not killed but sustains severe burns. Jane meets with her Fins to discuss the course of action to find the killer before any more lives are lost. Jane will also seek the help of the members of the Cover Girls book club. This book is an excellent addition to this exciting and informative series with a wonderful cast of characters. Ms. Adams has brought back a couple of characters from my favorite series, Book By the Bay. Chef Michel, the executive chef at Olivia Limoges restaurant in Oyster Bay, is one of the competition’s chefs. Olivia, along with her standard Poodle, Haviland, is also staying at Storyton Hall. Olivia and Haviland are my favorite characters from all of Ms. Adams’ books; Olivia is experiencing writer’s block and felt a change of scenery would help her out. I would love to see Jane take Hem and Fitz on vacation to Oyster Bay for a vacation and a chance to experience the ocean. I am anxiously awaiting the next book in this exciting series.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer Brown

    I love cozies that include food, animals or more books and I feel like this one had a little bit of all of that! I liked this adventure with Jane and murder at the bookish cook-off. I thought I had figured out the whodunit but I feel like there was a nice little spin in the end that threw me off. I finished this one in one day so now to wait another year for the next one! (Hopefully there will be many more!)

  9. 5 out of 5

    Kav

    This is an exceptional mystery series -- definitely one of my all time favourites -- so I preordered the audible edition and started listening bright and early on release day. Joanna Parker's narration is the perfect match for Ellery Adams' storytelling style. A solid mystery with enough twists and possible suspects to make an armchair sleuth's head spin. And, warning, this book might be dangerous for your waistline because all the delectable food descriptions are sure to whet your appetite. I en This is an exceptional mystery series -- definitely one of my all time favourites -- so I preordered the audible edition and started listening bright and early on release day. Joanna Parker's narration is the perfect match for Ellery Adams' storytelling style. A solid mystery with enough twists and possible suspects to make an armchair sleuth's head spin. And, warning, this book might be dangerous for your waistline because all the delectable food descriptions are sure to whet your appetite. I enjoyed being back among old friends at Storyton Hall. If this was a real place I'd book a vacation there every year or, better still, apply for a position at the front desk so I could watch all the drama unfold firsthand. :-) This is definitely a series best read in order as aspects of Storyton Hall, Jane's role there and her romantic relationship continue to develop with each new book.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kelli Roberts

    I'm always thrilled to visit Storyton Hall, and each installment just gets better and better. Along with the lovely atmosphere of the literary-themed luxury resort, there was the filming of a cooking competition reality show, more time with the wonderful supporting characters, and insight into some human rights issues that don't get enough attention. I also loved the crossover with the Books by the Bay series, and definitely want to see more of these characters again. This is one of my favorite I'm always thrilled to visit Storyton Hall, and each installment just gets better and better. Along with the lovely atmosphere of the literary-themed luxury resort, there was the filming of a cooking competition reality show, more time with the wonderful supporting characters, and insight into some human rights issues that don't get enough attention. I also loved the crossover with the Books by the Bay series, and definitely want to see more of these characters again. This is one of my favorite cozy mystery series from a favorite author, and I can't wait to read the next one! Thanks to Netgalley and Kensington for the advance digital copy.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    I think I start every review for books in this series by saying I wish Storyton Hall was a real place where I could go on vacation, but I really do! The setting for the series is lovely and I like the cast of characters. The ending of this mystery felt rushed to me, but I still enjoyed reading it. I received an ARC from NetGalley. The book will be released on April 27, 2021.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Heidi Prockish

    I hope this series never ends. I love it so much.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Shawn

    I'm excited for the next in series. I'm excited for the next in series.

  14. 5 out of 5

    OpenBookSociety.com

    https://openbooksociety.com/article/m... Brought to you by OBS Reviewer Jeanie It takes an amazing imagination to design the incredible Storyton Hall with the details of every area covered and the excellent characterizations of Jane, her family, Fins, family, friends. Even Storyton Village is delightfully pictured for the reader. I am impressed with the author’s design of the series and with this novel and latest mystery. It must be exhilarating for Jane and her staff to welcome every special group https://openbooksociety.com/article/m... Brought to you by OBS Reviewer Jeanie It takes an amazing imagination to design the incredible Storyton Hall with the details of every area covered and the excellent characterizations of Jane, her family, Fins, family, friends. Even Storyton Village is delightfully pictured for the reader. I am impressed with the author’s design of the series and with this novel and latest mystery. It must be exhilarating for Jane and her staff to welcome every special group that arrives at Storyton Hall! It is early summer, and we are welcoming the star of Posh Palate with Mia Mallett, a gourmet cookoff reality show between six top celebrity chefs. The chefs, director, and crew have already arrived. Mia, international trendsetter, influencer, and 27-year-old billionaire is a gracious, friendly young woman who gifted Storyton’s head chef, Mrs. Hubbard, with a breathtaking surprise. Thankfully, the fire that began earlier in the day, near the huge tent where much of the filming will be done, did not damage anything. It has been determined that the electrical fire was an act of arson, hopefully a foolish prank. The staff will be on high alert to make sure nothing else occurs. Storyton Hall is an amazing destination for the person who loves to read, with events and retreats held throughout the year for booklovers of all kinds. It is the kind of place I would love to visit, nestled in the mountains of Virginia like another world. It was lovingly brought from Europe, piece by piece, and reconstructed in this lovely location. The filming of the cookoff will open Storyton Hall and nearby Storyton Village up to millions of viewers with the potential of many new tourists. Filming the first challenge goes off without a hitch. Almost. Chef Pierce, unhappy with the judges’ determination, showed everyone what a high-maintenance jerk he could be by damaging the winning chef’s prize. He had been rude, harassed one of Storyton’s kitchen chefs, and annoyed almost everyone. A couple of the chefs were wonderful guests, folks who were personable and complimentary of everything. Chef Pierce is a top-rated chef, one of the reasons he was invited to participate. The other reason he was invited, however, is to help create the drama that makes for a good show. Early the next morning, Jane received a call from a kitchen staff member with an emergency. She dashed to the Hall to find one of their worst nightmares. Chef Pierce was dead in Mrs. Hubbard’s peaceful sanctuary, the cookbook nook, with two family heirloom serving containers shattered around him. At first it wasn’t clear, but within a couple hours they knew for sure. He had been murdered, and once again, there was a murderer staying at Storyton Hall. The Fins have been part of Storyton for many years. They have special backgrounds and training, and are prepared to protect Jane, her great-aunt and uncle, and her sons. They also oversee the security needs of the Hall undercover of being head of the library, recreation, chauffeurs and cars, and the butler. Three of the four men were like surrogate fathers to Jane when she grew up, having lost her parents at a young age. One oversees the martial arts training she and her twin sons receive. The Fins, Jane and her family, and her friends are defined to perfection. They are endearing and invaluable. Plot twists affect so many things in this complex mystery! As if a fire and a murder are not enough, unusual things continue to occur. One incident cannot occur without being intertwined with several others. The sheriff spends many hours at the Hall and, without the help of the Fins and Jane, would have a much more challenging job this time. They have an excellent working relationship, so they do not have the head-butting that often happens in cozy mysteries. I enjoy the interaction between them, as well as between Jane’s twins, the staff, and the chefs. I enjoyed a special guest of one of the chefs who became fast friends with Jane. Discovery of the bad guy(s) was not easy to determine, as there were unforeseen layers to each situation. I was actually shocked at part of the solution, while expecting part of it. All the loose ends were tied up, and I am so looking forward to the next visit! I highly recommend this, and the rest of the series!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Carla

    Murder in the Cookbook Nook is #7 in the Book Retreat Mysteries. This is one of those series where each book builds on the one before it, but the mystery is self-contained. If you want to read all the books in this series, I recommend reading them in order, but you can read this one and enjoy it even if you have not read the previous books. Storyton Hall is its best vacation spot for lovers of books. This summer a reality show is filming at Jane Steward's resort mixing culinary with literary. Si Murder in the Cookbook Nook is #7 in the Book Retreat Mysteries. This is one of those series where each book builds on the one before it, but the mystery is self-contained. If you want to read all the books in this series, I recommend reading them in order, but you can read this one and enjoy it even if you have not read the previous books. Storyton Hall is its best vacation spot for lovers of books. This summer a reality show is filming at Jane Steward's resort mixing culinary with literary. Six chefs are preparing to compete in an outdoor tent at Storyton Hall for prizes that will boost their careers. Each of the chefs is also the author of a cookbook, so there will be a book tent as well. For anyone who has ever seen a cooking show, you know that they can be very dramatic, with a lot of conflict, but this one has the added drama of the death of one of the contestants. Jane along with many of her staff, set out to discover how he died, and find the culprit before someone else is hurt. I really enjoy the characters in this story Jane is smart, loyal and very serious about her job protecting the books and artifacts in the resort, but also the way she protects the safety, privacy and comfort of her guests. Her boys, Fitz and Hem are also a part of the story, but they are involved with the festival, not the murder. Edwin and Jane are in a wonderful relationship and it is going well. I love that the resort's chef plays a large role in the story. Apparently some of the characters in this book have crossed over from another of her series, but it is not one that I read. The mystery starts off quickly, but settled down to a good pace while the investigation plays out. There were several clues, but I did not catch them until they were revealed and explained during conclusion. I had no idea who the culprit was and there were plenty of red herrings to throw me off. The showdown was partially planned out by the Fins, and it went well, catching the murderer. I find this series is very character driven with the reader getting to know the townspeople well. I enjoyed this mystery and recommend this series. Johanna Parker does a nice job with the narration, but I find her voices are not differentiated very much. Besides that, she adds expression, tone and emotion to the reading of this story. The publisher generously provided me with a copy of this book upon request. The rating and opinions shared are my own.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Bridget

    Murder in the Cookbook Nook by Ellery Adams is book seven in the 'Book Retreat Mystery' series and my second book in that series. Jane Steward is the manager of Storyton Hall and a single mum to her twin boys Fitzgerald and Hemingway (Fitz and Hem). Her boyfriend, Edwin Alcott runs a restaurant called the Daily Bread Cafe in Storyton and is a food writer. Storyton Hall, a book-related retreat, is the site for a cooking competition, Posh Palate with Mia Mallet, a billionaire trendsetter and social Murder in the Cookbook Nook by Ellery Adams is book seven in the 'Book Retreat Mystery' series and my second book in that series. Jane Steward is the manager of Storyton Hall and a single mum to her twin boys Fitzgerald and Hemingway (Fitz and Hem). Her boyfriend, Edwin Alcott runs a restaurant called the Daily Bread Cafe in Storyton and is a food writer. Storyton Hall, a book-related retreat, is the site for a cooking competition, Posh Palate with Mia Mallet, a billionaire trendsetter and social media influencer. Mia can be demanding and for the Posh Palate show, six of America’s very best chefs have been brought in. On the day that the filming crew is setting up, Jane, Hem and Fitz are cycling back from a visit to Storyton village when they see smoke in the distance but it turns out to be a minor grass fire. Later, a technician from a power solutions company finds the electrical wiring has been overloaded, suggesting that someone might be trying to sabotage the competition. Then one of the chefs, Chef Pierce, who has been annoying and insulting everyone since his arrival, gropes the pastry chef and Mia informs him that he is no longer in the competition. Chef Pierce fails to show up at breakfast the next day and he is found dead in his room... Murder in the Cookbook Nook was a compelling and fun cosy read and you'll want to read the other instalments if you are new to this series. I was sold from the very beginning, with its solid characters, great writing and a marvellous mystery that provided a good sprinkling of clues. The cast is quirky, and busy protagonist Jane is sparky, spirited, and curious and she has a lot going on in this story. There was a large number of characters in Murder in the Cookbook Nook but I think I just about managed to keep track of all of them. Janes's trusty sidekicks, The Fins, Butterworth, Sinclair and Sterling made a welcome return, the mystery itself was well done and there were enough red herrings and twists to keep me guessing the culprit's identity. Overall, a marvellous cosy and a very worthwhile read. I can't wait to see what Ellery Adams has in store for Jane next, in book #8. I received a complimentary copy of this novel at my request from Kensington Books via NetGalley. This review is my own unbiased opinion.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Daniele

    I am a huge fan of the Book Retreat Mystery series, and each book is unbelievably better than the last. What could be better than a book-themed five star resort, glorious talk of food, a crossover visit from an old literary friend, a touch of romance, and a complex murder mystery to solve? MURDER IN THE COOKBOOK NOOK has it all. This installment finds resort manager, and guardian of priceless literary treasures, Jane busy with a reality cooking competition that has set up camp at the resort. Thin I am a huge fan of the Book Retreat Mystery series, and each book is unbelievably better than the last. What could be better than a book-themed five star resort, glorious talk of food, a crossover visit from an old literary friend, a touch of romance, and a complex murder mystery to solve? MURDER IN THE COOKBOOK NOOK has it all. This installment finds resort manager, and guardian of priceless literary treasures, Jane busy with a reality cooking competition that has set up camp at the resort. Things immediately take a dangerous turn when there is an electrical fire followed by one of the chef contestant’s murder…and that’s just the beginning of the danger, action, and puzzles that Jane and her Fin cohorts must face. There are plenty of new characters to get to know within these pages, all varied and interesting, but my favorite is getting to see Olivia Limoges, her canine companion Captain Haviland, and Chef Michel from Adams’s Books by the Bay series again. I’ve missed these characters so much and dearly hope that Jane and Olivia remain in contact with one another. As always, Jane is intelligent, insightful, and calm under pressure. Her Fin cohorts are fabulous at digging up information and solving clues, and Jane’s twins Hem and Fitz are growing into wonderful tweens. The motive for all the mayhem is darker than some cozies out there, but it is an important issue handled well with Adams’s deft abilities. The subject never comes across as preachy, and it is a timely message. The mystery is well thought out and executed with aplomb. Every character and event serves a purpose, and the story moves along at a brisk pace. I suspected “whodunit” but was unable to put it all together before Jane and the climactic reveal. MURDER IN THE COOKBOOK NOOK is one of my best reads of the year. It is a bibliophile’s perfect escape. I cannot wait to spend more time with Jane and company. Highly recommended! I received an ARC of this title from the author and Kensington Books and voluntarily shared my thoughts here.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Toni

    4 stars This is the seventh book in the Book Retreat mystery series by Ellery Adams. This book is reality show meets cozy mystery. I wish there had been a bit more reality tv show in here. Seems like they were walking around the subject most of the story. Oh, we got to interact with all the Chefs and newcomers but I never really felt invested in the storyline. Even Jane and her significant other didn’t really connect for me. It was almost like everyone was just going through the motions. I think B 4 stars This is the seventh book in the Book Retreat mystery series by Ellery Adams. This book is reality show meets cozy mystery. I wish there had been a bit more reality tv show in here. Seems like they were walking around the subject most of the story. Oh, we got to interact with all the Chefs and newcomers but I never really felt invested in the storyline. Even Jane and her significant other didn’t really connect for me. It was almost like everyone was just going through the motions. I think Butterworth really stood out for me the most. The mystery was nice and the pacing good but I just couldn’t get into it like I have other books by Ellery Adams. Maybe it was just me and my mindset at the time of reading that skewed it all. Who knows. Definitely pick this up if you are a cozy mystery lover. I received this as an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) in return for an honest review. I thank NetGalley, the publisher and the author for allowing me to read this title. Opinions are completely my own.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

    Thanks to the publisher, via Netgalley, for an advance e-galley for honest review. This series continues to be a favorite in the genre with this newest one! This combines a reality tv cooking show with a bookish cozy mystery, a meld I didn't even know I was looking for but thoroughly enjoyed. Despite the high murder rate, Storyton Hall remains a place I desperately wish I could visit. All of the usual characters get a chance to shine in this one. One of the things I really enjoy about this series Thanks to the publisher, via Netgalley, for an advance e-galley for honest review. This series continues to be a favorite in the genre with this newest one! This combines a reality tv cooking show with a bookish cozy mystery, a meld I didn't even know I was looking for but thoroughly enjoyed. Despite the high murder rate, Storyton Hall remains a place I desperately wish I could visit. All of the usual characters get a chance to shine in this one. One of the things I really enjoy about this series is the way the subplot of Jane as the Guardian of Storyton Hall and it's secret treasures, along with the Fins, has been carried through, and while this plays a smaller role in this one compared to some others, it is still present and really just adds to the story.

  20. 5 out of 5

    The Cozy Review

    This series has always been a hit or miss for me. Sometimes the books are absolutely wonderful, entertaining, filled with characters and scenes that make me want to visit. Other times, it has left me scratching my head in confusion. Murder in the Cookbook Nook is definitely a hit that left me smiling. Storyton Hall is an amazing resort and readers will want to spend hours, even days picturing it. I love cookbooks or any book for that matter, however, this series keeps readers exploring the world This series has always been a hit or miss for me. Sometimes the books are absolutely wonderful, entertaining, filled with characters and scenes that make me want to visit. Other times, it has left me scratching my head in confusion. Murder in the Cookbook Nook is definitely a hit that left me smiling. Storyton Hall is an amazing resort and readers will want to spend hours, even days picturing it. I love cookbooks or any book for that matter, however, this series keeps readers exploring the world of books, and this time, cookbooks. The characters are charming, the premise modern, the killer not unexpected but still interesting. The issues brought up throughout the book for the cooking show add interesting bits to the plot and help readers understand why bad things keep happening. The resort is breathtaking and would be an amazing place to stay. The recurring characters are worth the read every time, and Jane’s twins keep things from getting too dark. Motives for the murder(s) range from jealousy, culinary competition, to a natural inclination for revenge. There is a twist ending that many readers may not see coming but there are plenty of clues to lead them down the right path. The killer isn’t difficult to find but readers may find themselves second-guessing their conclusions. The cooking part of the book will have readers scrambling to their kitchens and pouring over the cookbooks they own, and maybe even going out to buy a few more. The descriptions of books at Storyton Hall will have readers clamoring to read the classics. Murder in the Cookbook Nook is worth the read. One word of caution, if you haven’t read any of the other books in this series, I highly recommend doing so before jumping into this latest installment.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Marcia

    Every time I go to Storyton Hall, I don't want to leave and can't wait to return. Jane and her intrepid staff take on a cooking competition show for this trip. We see Mrs. Hubbard take her place among the professional chefs competing and shine in her own way. Of course The Cover Girls play a key role in helping Jane and the Fins take the "bad guy" down. Naturally, a perfect wedding shower was planned and held for Eloise, the bride-to-be. So now the question is, how soon can I get back to Storyto Every time I go to Storyton Hall, I don't want to leave and can't wait to return. Jane and her intrepid staff take on a cooking competition show for this trip. We see Mrs. Hubbard take her place among the professional chefs competing and shine in her own way. Of course The Cover Girls play a key role in helping Jane and the Fins take the "bad guy" down. Naturally, a perfect wedding shower was planned and held for Eloise, the bride-to-be. So now the question is, how soon can I get back to Storyton Hall and celebrate Eloise and Lachlan's big day?

  22. 4 out of 5

    Kathy

    Another fun book about what sounds like it would be my favorite place to visit, Storyton Manor. I have read this series from the beginning, and like the characters and how Jane and her sons have accepted their legacies of guardians of the secret library. This is a pretty original idea. This time Jane is hosting a Bookish Cook Off, and it seems several people really don't want to see it happen. Things go wrong almost from the beginning, and everyone, including the cook is involved. Another fun book about what sounds like it would be my favorite place to visit, Storyton Manor. I have read this series from the beginning, and like the characters and how Jane and her sons have accepted their legacies of guardians of the secret library. This is a pretty original idea. This time Jane is hosting a Bookish Cook Off, and it seems several people really don't want to see it happen. Things go wrong almost from the beginning, and everyone, including the cook is involved.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Maria

    I enjoyed this one a little more than I did the others in this series, mainly because of the cooking competition and the crossover with Olivia Limoges, but there is something that just turns me off to this series. I think it might the overly cutesy feel of the setting and the super sweet people who are just so virtuous.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Stormi (BMReviewsohmy)

    Glad to be caught up on this series. This one was pretty good with six celebrity chefs battling it out at Storyton Hall and one gets murders and Jane is not happy as it was at Storyton Hall and she must get to the bottom of it.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Deborah Almada

    Wow, just wow. This is always an interesting series but this book had you running from the get go. The kitchens and food have always been a big deal at Storyton Hall, so a reality show with gourmet chefs, cookbook deals and a big monetary reward seem like it would be a comfortable fit until a fire is started on the Archery field, one of the chefs is murdered and then a propane tank blows up during filming. What is going on? Jane, the Finns, the Cover Girls, Mrs Hubbard and Edwin are going to hav Wow, just wow. This is always an interesting series but this book had you running from the get go. The kitchens and food have always been a big deal at Storyton Hall, so a reality show with gourmet chefs, cookbook deals and a big monetary reward seem like it would be a comfortable fit until a fire is started on the Archery field, one of the chefs is murdered and then a propane tank blows up during filming. What is going on? Jane, the Finns, the Cover Girls, Mrs Hubbard and Edwin are going to have their hands full figuring out what is really going on and making it stop. Hang on for a wild ride because just when you think you have a handle on it, you don't!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Nancy Haddock

    This is another series I've loved from the get-go, and I was able to borrow this installment from the library. Storyton Hall is a wonderful setting, and I love all the characters! The plots are inventive and intriguing, the writing is excellent, and the story moves along at just the right pace. If you want a vacation with a side of mystery, this series is for you! This is another series I've loved from the get-go, and I was able to borrow this installment from the library. Storyton Hall is a wonderful setting, and I love all the characters! The plots are inventive and intriguing, the writing is excellent, and the story moves along at just the right pace. If you want a vacation with a side of mystery, this series is for you!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Micky Cox

    Each book in this series that you read will be your favorite....until you read the next book! It seems impossible, but this series just keeps getting better and better. Outstanding characters that you can't wait to delve into their stories each time a new book comes out. Most of this series is available on audiobook and the narrator does a fantastic job of making the characters feel alive as well as enhances an already fabulous plot. Each book in this series that you read will be your favorite....until you read the next book! It seems impossible, but this series just keeps getting better and better. Outstanding characters that you can't wait to delve into their stories each time a new book comes out. Most of this series is available on audiobook and the narrator does a fantastic job of making the characters feel alive as well as enhances an already fabulous plot.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Trish

    Better than Killer Characters, although I hope what happened there wasn't just to lead in to a "some years later" for Olivia and Michel here. The trouble is, Ellery Adams has now broken my trust, so I'm not sure if any characters from any of her series are safe. Better than Killer Characters, although I hope what happened there wasn't just to lead in to a "some years later" for Olivia and Michel here. The trouble is, Ellery Adams has now broken my trust, so I'm not sure if any characters from any of her series are safe.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Anna Fox

    This is a good addition to the series. I like the relationship between the characters and how the MC doesn't try to do it alone. She has the Finns as well as her good friends to help her out. This time she has Olivia Limoges from the Books by the Bay series to help her out. The mystery kept me guessing and I hope for many more. Thank you to the author, publisher and NetGalley for my eARC in exchange for an honest review. This is a good addition to the series. I like the relationship between the characters and how the MC doesn't try to do it alone. She has the Finns as well as her good friends to help her out. This time she has Olivia Limoges from the Books by the Bay series to help her out. The mystery kept me guessing and I hope for many more. Thank you to the author, publisher and NetGalley for my eARC in exchange for an honest review.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Kristina

    I could not wait to read Murder in the Cookbook Nook by Ellery Adams. I look forward to reading the newest installment in this series each year. While this is the seventh A Book Retreat Mystery, it can be read as a standalone. I have enjoyed reading this series from the beginning, and I recommend reading it in order (you’ll love it). I love visiting Storyton Hall which is a delight for bibliophiles. The author provides vivid descriptions of Storyton Hall and the surrounding area. These word depi I could not wait to read Murder in the Cookbook Nook by Ellery Adams. I look forward to reading the newest installment in this series each year. While this is the seventh A Book Retreat Mystery, it can be read as a standalone. I have enjoyed reading this series from the beginning, and I recommend reading it in order (you’ll love it). I love visiting Storyton Hall which is a delight for bibliophiles. The author provides vivid descriptions of Storyton Hall and the surrounding area. These word depictions really bring the story alive for me. I especially was delighted with Mrs. Hubbard’s cookbook nook. It sounds amazing with the special cookbooks and the precious antiques. I want a cozy nook like that where I can read and relax. There is a cast of charming, developed, and diverse characters led by Jane Steward. She has an excellent staff who are part of her family. Jane’s two sons are smart and adorable. Jane’s relationship with Edwin is progressing nicely. They are a cute and compatible couple. It was wonderful to see Olivia Limoges and her poodle, Captain Haviland from A Books by the Bay Mystery series. I hope we see more of her in the future (especially since she has made friends with the Cover Girls). The mystery was well-crafted. There are several suspects who disliked the offensive victim. The clues are subtle (the devil is in the details). This is an engaging whodunit that will keep readers guessing until the tension filled reveal. I like how it all came together with a satisfying conclusion. The epilogue was delightful and fun. I am eager for my next visit to Storyton Hall (I wish we did not have to wait a year for it). Murder in the Cookbook Nook is a bibliophiles dream with a cozy cookbook nook, an odious oaf, delectable delights, a proper poodle, creative chefs, a fierce fire, and a bounty of books.

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