Anyone who loves good food and enjoys cooking it has had the fantasy–owning their own restaurant. We picture ourselves greeting loyal customers and their friends (because of course all those loyal customers have talked us up to everyone they know). We imagine recommending wines from our extensive cellar, ordering the freshest and tastiest produce, coming up with new food combinations, new pairings, and new recipes that knock the socks off customers and critics alike.
And then there’s reality.
Believe me, I know. I’ve worked in the restaurant business a long time, most recently at Sophie’s Terminal at the Tracks in Hubbard, Ohio.
Soft candlelight and linen table cloths?
Not a chance.
Now there’s something we can talk about!
You see, in addition to taking care of all the usual restaurant business–updating the menu with our latest ethnic specials, handling the staff, making sure our patrons are happy–we here at Sophie’s have had a couple challenging mysteries to sort through lately. It started last year when the Lance of Justice, a local TV investigative reporter, was killed. I documented that case in “Irish Stewed.” Now this year . . .
I have to admit, I’m catching my breath here. Rocky Arnaud was not only Sophie’s best friend, she was helping me with our latest French specials. And to think of what happened to her . . .
The cops insisted it was suicide, but I knew from the start they were wrong. Rocky was more full of life than people half her age. She was a fan of French music, enjoyed French cooking, and loved nothing more in the entire world that Pacifique, the charming farm where she grew specialty vegetables and herbs. Rocky dead? The very thought still clutches as my throat and sends my heartbeat racing.
There was only one thing I could do and that was to investigate. I’ll let you read the details in “French Fried,” book #2 in the Ethnic Eats series, but let me just tell you that things got pretty complicated, what with the Statue of Liberty commemoration going on in town, and a famous historian visiting, and the over-the-top author on book tour, the one who’d written the sweeping French saga that was being turned into a TV series.
A day in the life? It’s hard enough to take care of everyday business in a restaurant. It’s even more of a challenge when there’s murder on the menu!
You can read more about Laurel in French Fried, the second book in the “Ethnic Eats” mystery series.
Poison du Jour
The Statue of Liberty is 130 years old, and for the struggling residents of Hubbard, Ohio, any opportunity to bring in tourists is reason enough for a celebration. Laurel Inwood and her aunt, Sophie, are pitching in. Sophie’s Terminal at the Tracks, a former greasy spoon turned charming ethnic eatery, will be offering French cuisine for the entire week.
For expert help with their quiche and escargot, the ladies turn to Raquel “Rocky” Arnaud, a former French chef and friend of Sophie. What looks like a match made in heaven turns rank as quickly as buttermilk on a summer’s day. Rocky turns up dead and when her nightly red wine shows notes of oak, cinnamon, and poison, Laurel turns from soufflé to sleuth.
INCLUDES A RECIPE
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About the author
Kylie Logan is the bestselling author of the Ethnic Eats and the League of Literary Ladies mysteries. She has never had the fantasy of owning a restaurant and, in fact, finds it a challenge simply to decide what to cook for dinner each day. She does, however, enjoy good food almost as much as she enjoys a puzzling mystery. As Casey Daniels, she also writes the Pepper Martin mysteries. You can find her online at Facebook (Kylie Logan and Casey Daniels) or at www.kylielogan.com.
All comments are welcomed.