A day in the life of Sally Solari by Leslie Karst

a-measure-of-murderWhoever came up with the adage “the customer is always right” clearly never worked at a a place like Solari’s. With its prime location out at the end of the historic Santa Cruz Wharf, my family’s restaurant attracts tourists from around the globe—and not all of them particularly well-behaved.

Case in point: Right now, I’m busy chasing down a pair of toddlers running through the dining room snatching francese bread from all the other tables. Their German parents have apparently gotten the impression that child care is included with their orders of spaghetti carbonara.

To make matters worse, if I don’t get out of here soon I’m going to be late for chorus rehearsal. And our director, a fiery Neapolitan named Marta, does not take kindly to tardiness. Corralling the errant children and steering them back to their booster chairs, I deposit my Bolognese-stained apron in the dish room hamper, wave goodbye to my dad at the six-burner stove, and head out the door for my ’57 T-Bird convertible.

Free at last! I have just enough time to go home and scarf down a cheese and avocado quesadilla, take Buster for a walk, and then swing by my other restaurant, Gauguin, to make sure our reach-in fridge has been repaired, before heading downtown to the church where we’re rehearsing the glorious Mozart Requiem.

Tonight, however, we are a tenor short. And not just any tenor, but the section leader, who’s fallen out of the second story window of the church and broken his neck. I know one shouldn’t speak ill of the dead, but I can’t say I’m too terribly sorry. For in addition to being the head of the tenor section, he was a real head case, too, as far as I can tell.

As a result, when his soprano girlfriend starts trying to convince me his death was not an accident, I’m of two minds. Clearly, plenty of folks had good reason to dislike the guy, but I’ve learned the hard way that sticking your nose into other people’s murders can be dangerous business.

I agree to keep my ears open and ask around a bit, nothing more.

But then someone starts a suspicious fire at Gauguin and that’s when the case becomes personal. Because no one messes with an Italian’s kitchen and gets away with it.

* * *


You can read more about Sally in A MEASURE OF MURDER, the second book in the Sally Solari culinary mystery series.

Sally Solari is busy juggling work at her family’s Italian restaurant, Solari’s, and helping plan the autumn menu for the restaurant she’s just inherited, Gauguin. Complicating this already hectic schedule, Sally joins her ex-boyfriend Eric’s chorus, which is performing a newly discovered version of her favorite composition: the Mozart Requiem. But then, at the first rehearsal, a tenor falls to his death on the church courtyard—and his soprano girlfriend is sure it wasn’t an accident.

Now Sally’s back on another murder case mixed in with a dash of revenge, a pinch of peril, and a suspicious stack of sheet music. And while tensions in the chorus heat up, so does the kitchen at Gauguin, set aflame right as Sally starts getting too close to the truth. Can Sally catch the killer before she’s burnt to a crisp, or will the case grow as cold as yesterday’s leftovers?

“Engaging characters, terrific writing, and a savory blend of musical and culinary erudition…polymath Karst sauces her plot without masking its flavor. And she’s a dab hand with the red herrings.” Publishers Weekly starred review

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Meet the author
Leslie Karst is the author of the Sally Solari culinary mystery series, published by Crooked Lane Books (Dying for a Taste, A Measure of Murder). The daughter of a law professor and a potter, Leslie has degrees in English literature, law, and culinary arts. After graduating from Stanford Law School, she worked for twenty years as a research and appellate attorney before turning to mystery writing. Leslie now spends her days cooking, gardening, cycling, singing alto in the local community chorus, and of course writing. She and her wife and their Jack Russell mix, Ziggy, split their time between Santa Cruz, California and Hilo, Hawai’i. Visit her online at lesliekarstauthor.com and on Facebook.

All comments are welcomed.

Giveaway: Leave a comment below for your chance to win a print copy of A Measure of Murder. US entries only, please. The giveaway ends February 13, 2017. Good luck everyone!

A Measure of Murder is available at retail and online booksellers.

41 responses to “A day in the life of Sally Solari by Leslie Karst

  1. Pauline Barlow

    I have never heard of this author but would like to try her books. I’m wondering if there are recipes at the end of the book. I have found great ones in some culinary mysteries.

  2. This one sounds great. Thank you for the chance to win!

  3. This is a new to me author and series. I look forward to reading it.

  4. Another new author/series that you’ve introduced to me – and that I want to read! Thanks!!

  5. Haven’t heard of this author before but the book sounds like an enjoyable read! Thanks for a chance to win!

  6. A new-to-me with author/series……
    Thank you for the giveaway…..

  7. These sounds great and are already on my list at the library…Thanks 🙂

  8. Linda Farabaugh

    Haven’t read anything by this author. I like books that include food as part of the theme. Thanks for a chance to win. My name is LINDA Farabaugh My email is lindafarabaugh56@gmail.com. Mthe website bookmusings.com

  9. I enjoyed reading an ARC of A Measure of Murder last month and I also liked the first Sally Solari book, Dying To Taste. Don’t include me in the draw since I live outside the US. Just wanted to say “HI” to Leslie and see you at LCC in March!

  10. Barbara Hackel

    New author and series for me, but I need to read it! Thanks Dru Ann for introducing me! Thanks Leslie for the opportunity to win a copy of A Measure of Murder! You had me at “…German parents have apparently gotten the impression that child care is included with their orders of spaghetti carbonara.” I needed that laugh!!:) Thanks!

  11. Brian Frauenknecht

    I love this series and would love to win this book. Thanks for the chance to win Dru!

  12. This is a new series for me. I’ll have to see if I can find the first book and get it on my TBR shelves.
    Thank you for the chance. 😀

  13. I love culinary mysteries, so I’ll add this one to my list.

  14. elainehroberson

    Thanks for a chance to win a copy of your book. It sounds like a great series.

  15. Wonderful feature and giveaway. Thanks for this chance.

  16. Sounds like a heap of fun. I’d love to read A Measure of Murder.

  17. I like the sound of the book.

  18. kittsklosetdollclothes

    This sounds like a great series, would love to win!

  19. Sounds like a winner. Anything with murder and food I am in.

  20. Karlene Barger

    I’d love to win this book – my TBR list is getting low!

  21. This series sounds great, love that Italian food!

  22. Robin L. Coxon

    Thank you Dru Ann for the opportunity to enter the give away for the Sally Solari’s culinary mystery book. I enjoy reading your blog and finding new books.

  23. How complicated! I would like very much to win this one.

  24. Sounds good, Thanks for the chance.

  25. Definitely on my TBR list! Thanks for the chance.

  26. “A Measure of Murder” sounds like an amazing read. Would enjoy reading. Thanks for the chance.

  27. Thanks for a great introduction to a series & author I want to try.

  28. Sally sounds like an interesting character, and I love mysteries with food! Thanks for the chance to win.

  29. Sounds great – new author/series.

  30. MaryAnn Forbes

    Would love an opportunity to read A Measure of Murder; thanks for the opportunity.📚

  31. I would love to win a copy of A Measure of Murder. A new author and series for me. I have no idea how I missed it. Thanks for the chance.

  32. I’d like to win this for the ladies at the local nursing home who devour books like this.

  33. Shrimp and mushrooms in a pan have never looked so sinister! Thank you for the contest!

  34. sounds great. thanks for the chance

  35. This sounds like a book I’d enjoy—and some recipes I could enjoy, too.
    suefarrell.farrell@gmail.com

  36. A new-to-me author and series that sound really good. Thank you for the chance to win a copy

  37. **** WINNER ****
    of A MEASURE OF MURDER is Pauline Barlow
    Congratulations!

  38. Marilyn Watson

    Yum …the food recipes should be fabulous and the mystery is something I always love..
    Marilyn ewatvess@yahoo.com