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In her assured debut, Crawford, a caterer with many travel-related articles to her credit, introduces an appealing family trio: tender-hearted Libby Simmons, owner of a catering business, A Little Taste of Heaven, in Longely, N.Y.; her wisecracking sister, Bernie, a refugee from L.A. and a disastrous marriage; and Sean, their wheelchair-bound father, a retired police chief. Nasty Laird Wrenn, a best-selling author of vampire fiction, plans to celebrate his success with appropriate menu (Bloody Marys, devil's food cake) and decor to match (black roses, a coffin) at a reunion dinner to be held at the local high school. When Laird drops dead at the dinner after drinking a glass of water, a slew of ill-wishers, including Libby's close friend Tiffany, whom Laird was stringing along, become suspects in his sudden demise. A naturally flowing narrative, lively and likable characters, and plenty of clever word play amid the foul play set this first novel above the common run of cozies.
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"In A Catered Murder, Isis Crawford has served up a delicious menu for a cozy mystery that has all the right ingredients. A terrific debut!"