Mistletoe Cake Murder (All-Day Breakfast Cafe Mystery)
by Lena Gregory
About Mistletoe Cake Murder
6th in Series
Setting – Florida
Publisher : Lyrical Press (October 12, 2021)
Print length : 219 pages
Digital ASIN : B08T6JHSZT
’Tis the season for celebrating when Gia Morelli’s holidays include both a wedding and yuletide festivities. Until someone naughty delivers a most unwanted Christmas gift—murder. . .
For a native New Yorker, palm trees and warm temperatures don’t equal winter, much less Christmastime. Nevertheless, Gia Morelli’s friends have decked the halls and trimmed the trees to truly welcome her into their “family” with an old-fashioned Boggy Creek, Florida holiday season. Even more joyous, Savannah Mills is getting married on Christmas Eve—the greatest gift Gia could ever wish for her best friend.
But when Gia and Savannah stop by the caterer for a final tasting a week before the wedding, they overhear another bride arguing with her son about her husband-to-be. Moments later, the woman is sampling a piece of wedding cake—gorgeously decorated with mistletoe frosting—then suddenly dies.
Now Gia’s caterer friends are the prime suspects in what appears to be murder by poisoning. To clear their names and ensure Savannah has a merry matrimony will require Gia to conjure up a Christmas miracle . . .
Includes recipes from the All-Day Breakfast Café!
Savannah Mills drummed her glitter-tipped maroon nails against the gear shift of her blue Mustang convertible as she rounded one last curve on the way to Trevor Barnes’s mansion, where she and Leo Dumont would be married in a little more than a week.
Few streetlights lined the dark road, casting small pools of light against the slick pavement, compliments of an unusually rainy day in the small town of Boggy Creek, Florida. Gia Morelli would have preferred to head out to the mansion before dark, but they had to wait until after she closed the All-Day Breakfast Café for the day.
Savannah shook her head, tumbling her long blonde hair into her face. She sighed and tucked the strands behind her ear before returning to nail tapping her staccato rhythm.
Gia laid a hand over hers, stilling the steady rat-a-tat-tat. “Will you relax. Everything’s going to be perfect.”
“I know.” She glanced at Gia, her bottom lip caught between her teeth.
Gia just lifted a brow.
“All right, all right.” Laughing, Savannah returned her attention to the road ahead. She rolled her shoulders, tilted her head from side to side. “Maybe I’ve been a little stressed lately.”
Understatement of the year; better to keep that to herself. “Ya think?”
“Hey,” Savannah pointed at her. “A good friend once told me no one likes a smart aleck.”
Gia grinned. Nothing like having her own words thrown back at her.
As Savannah pulled into the cul-de-sac where Trevor’s mansion stood at the far end, she slowed. Her mouth dropped open. “Oh, wow.”
Long strands of evergreen garland, complete with pine cones and ivory bows, had been draped along the stone wall surrounding the grounds. The faux-snow covered garland twinkled with thousands of tiny clear Christmas lights, giving the impression of a winter wonderland, despite the ridiculously hot Florida weather of late. For just a moment, Gia could imagine the rain changing to fluffy white flakes that would bury the estate in rolling hills of snow.
Huge oak trees lined the inside of the wall, their moss draped limbs alight with lanterns that seemed to hover in mid-air, a welcoming invitation to crank up the air conditioning, grab a blanket, and snuggle up with a good book in front of one of the numerous fireplaces Trevor’s mansion boasted.
“Wow,” Gia repeated, not knowing what else to say.
Savannah stopped in front of the wrought iron gate and pushed a button on the remote Trevor had given her. As the gates slowly opened, she looked at Gia. “Trevor sure did go all-out.”
“No kidding.” Trevor’s mansion and grounds were gorgeous on an average day, which was part of the reason Gia had wanted to hold Savannah’s wedding there, but seeing it fully decorated for Christmas left Gia speechless.
“I feel like I’m at the North Pole, heading straight into Santa’s castle.” Savannah rolled through the gates and closed them behind her. “It’s incredible.”
“It sure is.” The palm trees lining both sides of the driveway were strung with lights. Piles of boxes wrapped in pale pink and ivory paper with silver bows were piled beneath them. The fact that they hadn’t turned to mush in the pounding rain told Gia they must be just decorative, made from some material that could withstand the elements, but they sure looked real.
“I can’t believe Trevor did all of this for us.” With her gaze darting everywhere, Savannah pulled into the circular courtyard and stopped in front of the house.
About Lena Gregory
Lena grew up in a small town on the south shore of eastern Long Island, but she recently traded in cold, damp, gray winters for the warmth and sunshine of central Florida, where she now lives with her husband, three kids, son-in-law, and four dogs. Her hobbies include spending time with family, reading, and walking. Her love for writing developed when her youngest son was born and didn’t sleep through the night. She works full-time as a writer and a freelance editor and is a member of Sisters in Crime.
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/Lena.Gregory.Author/?fref=ts
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