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Death on Eat Street
A Biscuit Bowl Food Truck Mystery
J J Cook

April 1, 2014/ ISBN 978-0-425-26345-7
Mystery/Amateur Sleuth

Reviewed by Laura Hinds


Zoe Chase had enough of her dead end job at the bank. Others were promoted while she was passed over. The situation finally moved her to quit the job and follow her dream—to open a restaurant and make people happy with her delicious cooking. Naturally, her wealthy and successful parents and her boyfriend, Tommy Lee, don’t understand and insist that she give up and go back to the bank.

Zoe is going to continue to run her food truck, the Biscuit Bowl, until she earns enough money to convert the old diner she bought into a proper restaurant. So what if it is in a bad neighborhood? Zoe’s made friends with people at the homeless shelter down the street, and has a place to donate all the extra food she doesn’t sell.

Yet when rival food truck owner--Terry, of Terry’s Taco truck--is murdered and Zoe finds his body in her food truck, it seems that maybe her parents and Tommy Lee are right. Then she spots Tommy Lee kissing a fellow banker, Betty, right in front of the murder scene. She may be a murder suspect, and newly single again, but Zoe stiffens her spine and is determined to make her new life work, at all costs.

With the help of her attorney, Miguel, who promptly helps to clear her name, and her friend Ollie from the shelter, and her new roommate, Delia (who just happens to be the current suspect in Terry’s murder,) it seems she might make a go of it. If she can stay alive long enough, that is. The killer thinks she has a valuable recipe and is ready to do anything to get it.

J. J. Cook is a pseudonym for the well-loved mystery writing team of Joyce and Jim Lavene. If you are a fan of the Lavene’s other series (there are several), you’ll probably like this book well enough. If you are a foodie who also enjoys a good mystery, you’ll be happy with the recipes at the back of the book, too. If, like me, you always hope for the Lavenes (no matter what name they are using) to write a fabulous book that you wish will never end, you may be disappointed. The characters didn’t grab my attention and their relationships, and various circumstances in the story just did not ring true for me. With any luck, the series will improve with future books, and because I adore the writing duo’s talent, I’ll certainly read the next book and hope for the best.

Reviewed 2014