The Proof of the Pudding has all the ingredients for a top-drawer cozy: well-hidden secrets (Sir Mordred’s murky past); a plucky heroine (Lady Georgiana); an ideal setting (Blackheart Manor); and humor (think Jeeves and Bertie Wooster).
This is what happens.
Lady Georgiana has just hired a French chef, Pierre by name. Sir Mordred Mortimer, an author of horror stories, is so impressed with the new arrival’s culinary skills that he invites him to prepare a banquet at Blackheart Manor for the launch of his latest book. He also plans to open his ‘poison’ garden for the amusement of his guests. Attendees include a famous explorer, an Harrovian schoolmate (uninvited), his clearly alienated daughter and her needy husband, several luminaries including Laurence Olivier and Agatha Christie, and Georgiana and husband. The scene is set for murder. The banquet, however, goes off splendidly. It is not until later that several guests suffer stomach upsets ranging from unpleasant to fatal, and Pierre is arrested. Georgiana believes him innocent but cannot figure out how the poison was targeted so selectively, and precisely, when everyone ate exactly the same meal. Fans of Rhys Bowen’s Royal Spyness Series will gobble up The Proof of the Pudding, poison and all.
Star Rating: 4 out of 5 Available on Amazon
Published by Berkley Prime Crime
November 7, 2023