Assaulted Caramel by Amanda Flower
I’ve read quite a few cozy mysteries to date, so there has to be a unique hook to really catch my interest. Murder in Amish country? That’ll do it. (I might also have a soft spot for the 1985 romantic thriller Witness.)
Assaulted Caramel features Bailey, a New York chocolatier (read: fancy chocolate maker) who’s summoned back home to Amish country in Ohio when her grandfather falls ill. Bailey’s grandparents run an Amish candy shop, which is where Bailey had first learned the fine art of chocolate making. While in town to help care for her grandfather, a sketchy property developer winds up dead.
Along the way, while investigating the murder, a budding romance sparks between Bailey and the local deputy…and Bailey starts to wonder where she truly belongs.
Note: I’ve seen this book categorized as a Christian cozy. While there are obviously plenty of references to the Amish faith, I didn’t find the story overtly preachy. Your mileage may vary.
Keep some kind of sweets on hand while you read this, because the descriptions of candy are truly mouthwatering. Also featured: a cat named Nutmeg, a brief primer on Amish life, and this gorgeous cover. Great series starter!