Scene of the Brine by Mary Ellen Hughes is the third book in the “Pickled and Preserved” mystery series. Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime, February 2016

Scene of the BrinePiper Lamb has to take a break from jarring her delicious pickles and preserves to blow the lid off a poisoner. . .

Business is booming at Piper’s Picklings in Cloverdale, New York. But not all is sweet in the life of Piper’s number one customer and friend, local caterer Sugar Heywood. Sugar is dating wealthy realtor Jeremy Porter, but his family doesn’t approve. After their unscrupulous accountant finds some dirt on Sugar, the family quickly urges Jeremy to throw her out like rotten fruit.

Things are further spoiled after the accountant is found poisoned, and all evidence points to Sugar’s son, Zach. With the Porter family determined to avoid scandal, it won’t be easy for Piper to preserve Zach’s innocence. And after someone falls victim to a poisoned jar of some of her brandied cherries, Piper’s got a peck of trouble to deal with herself. . .

This is a fun book to read. I love the idea of a pickling theme and learning what can and cannot be pickled. In the latest adventure, things get dicey when murder strikes and goods sold at Piper’s place is deemed poisoned. Now it’s up to Piper and her friends to find the person responsible for this dastardly crime.

The author does a good job of keeping me engaged and entertained through out this delectable mystery with plenty of suspects with motives and the clues given aids in the identifying killer with a nice twist to enhance the narrative of this tale. All the major players had a key role in this terrific book and the ending put a smile on my face. I can’t wait to see where we go next in this delightfully charming series.

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