Blog Tour and Book Review: The Pepper Peach Murder by Meg Benjamin
Roxy Constantine is the jam queen of Shavano, Colorado, and she’s fine with it. Not that things couldn’t be better. Her social life is a bust, and she’s still recovering from a bad experience as a line cook in Denver. But things are looking up when she meets local chef Nate Robicheaux. Roxy would like to get closer to Nate, but she’s fending off the unwanted attentions of another local, Brett Holmes, who won’t take no for an answer. When Brett threatens to derail Roxy’s appearance on a national cooking show, the two have a very public fight. A few days later, Brett is found murdered in his restaurant kitchen, and suddenly Roxy’s a prime suspect. Now Roxy, Nate, and her other friends must find out the truth about Brett’s background and his murderer before the town of Shavano decides Roxy’s reign as jam queen is over for good.
Meg Benjamin will be awarding a $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. You can enter at the end of the post.
It would be better for him to hear it from you than to discover it on his own.
Nate’s voice still echoed in my ears. For a moment, I wished I’d asked him to come with me. But I had to face this on my own. It was my disaster, after all.
I climbed up the stairs to the front door, pausing for a moment to check the directory on the wall inside. The chief’s office was on the first floor, right down the hall. Once I turned in that direction, there’d be no going back. I’d be committed to confessing.
I walked down the corridor, feeling like I was going to the executioner’s block.
There was a receptionist for the chief’s office along with the county attorney and the sheriff. I didn’t recognize her, which was just as well. This visit wasn’t something I wanted shared on social media.
She looked up expectantly. “Yes?”
“I need to see Chief Fowler.” I was amazed that my voice was steady.
“Do you have an appointment?”
I shook my head. “He’ll want to talk to me. Tell him it’s Roxy Constantine.”
The receptionist picked up her phone and dialed a number, turning away from me as she spoke.
Of course, I wasn’t absolutely sure Fowler would want to see me. Maybe he’d be too busy. Maybe he wasn’t interested. Maybe…
The receptionist glanced up at me. “Go on in. He’ll see you now.”
So much for hope. I opened the office door and stepped inside.
Fowler was sitting at his utilitarian, city-issued desk. He gazed up at me with that same unsmiling, inscrutable look he always seemed to wear. I wondered if he ever smiled. Probably not at people like me, people he suspected of murder.
I cleared my throat. “I have some things to tell you.”
He gestured to the chair in front of his desk. “Sit down, Ms. Constantine. I’ve been expecting you.”
This book was a pleasant read. I admit that I am biased because I love cooking. So I thoroughly enjoyed following along with all of Roxy’s jam recipes and Nate’s pork chop ideas. The whole concept of a pepper peach jam just sounds amazing. As someone who cooks, I prefer risky unusual flavors, and Roxy delivered. I also thought that the author did a good job with the setting. The farmers market, the restaurant scene and the overall culture of Shavano was described very well. It was one of the novel’s most charming aspects.
The book provides the reader with romance, food and murder. What else is there in life, right? Roxy is a strong woman who stands up for herself. She refuses to remain passive in the police investigation of the murder when it may jeopardize her jam business. In other words, she isn't going down without a fight. She’s stubborn but all in good ways. Nate is a caring gentle soul, but I would've liked to see his character develop more. At the same time, maybe Roxy needs a partner who is simple and drama-free. Brent makes a good villain whose ego is fed through the amount of attention he receives from many women. Yet his arrogance gets the best of him.
If readers want to visit a town in Colorado full of tasty food and quirky locals, then they'll be right at home. I would have liked some more twists and turns in the plot, but the author did well in keeping readers guessing overall. Lastly, I have a strong urge to make my own jams now thanks to this book.
Meg Benjamin is an award-winning author of romance. Meg’s Konigsburg series is set in the Texas Hill Country and her Salt Box and Brewing Love trilogies are set in the Colorado Rockies (all are available from Entangled Publishing). Her new cozy mystery series, Luscious Delights from Wild Rose Press, concerns a jam-making sleuth based in the mythical small town of Shavano, Colorado. Along with contemporary romance, Meg is also the author of the paranormal Ramos Family trilogy from Berkley InterMix and the Folk trilogy from Soul Mate. Meg’s books have won numerous awards, including an EPIC Award, a Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award, the Holt Medallion from Virginia Romance Writers, the Beanpot Award from the New England Romance Writers, and the
and the Award of Excellence from Colorado Romance Writers.
Meg’s Web site is http://www.MegBenjamin.com.
You can follow her on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/meg.benjamin1), Pinterest (http://pinterest.com/megbenjamin/), Instagram (meg_benjamin) and Twitter (http://twitter.com/megbenj1). Meg loves to hear from readers—contact her at email@example.com.
The buy links for Pepper Peach Murder is https://www.amazon.com/Pepper-Murder-Luscious-Delights-Mystery-ebook/dp/B0BKYJPN22/ref=sr_1_1?crid=3PHU83N6E7I8N&keywords=meg+benjamin+pepper+peach+murder&qid=1668885185&s=books&sprefix=meg+benjamin+pepper+peach+murder%2Cstripbooks%2C105&sr=1-1
Enter the Giveaway
Meg Benjamin will be awarding a $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
Thanks to the author for providing a free review copy. Thanks to Goddess Fish Promotions for offering this tour and for all the work you do to support authors.