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Chopping Spree [Large Print] [Paperback]

Diane Mott Davidson
3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)

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Book Description

October 2002 Thorndike Press Large Print Core Series
For Colorado caterer Goldy Schulz, business isn't just booming - it's skyrocketing. But as her friend Marla is constantly warning her, "success can kill you." Goldy knows she needs to slow down before she breaks down, and she vows she'll do it - right after her next booking: a cocktail party for the Westside Mall's Elite Shoppers Club. It's the event of the shopping season: the Princess Without a Pricetag party for the wealthy shopaholics who drop at least a thousand dollars a week at the mall. Goldy has been hired by charming mall manager Barry Dean to cater the jewel-encrusted affair. But she has hardly begun setting up when she finds herself in the path of a truck that has no intention of stopping until both she and Barry are crushed beneath it. Muddied, bruised, embarrassed, but determined to do her job, Goldy manages to get the party started on time with the help of her trusted assistants Julian Teller and Liz Fury. But with the outbreak of an ugly spat among the guests, the behavior of Barry's flighty young girlfriend, and Barry's own strange actions after the truck incident, the event is - by Goldy's standards - a catastrophe. And it's about to get worse. When she goes to pick up the check, she finds an old friend lying dead in a pile of sale shoes - stabbed with one of Goldy's new knives. Hours later, Julian is the prime suspect in the murder. To prove Julian's innocence, Goldy must catch the real killer. But to do that, she will have to figure out why the victim was carrying a powerful narcotic. And why was a private investigator called in shortly before the murder? Was the killer connected to a mall renovation project - or the eviction of a disgruntled tenant? Or was the villian the odd lover out in a violent love triangle? Between whipping up Sweethearts' Swedish Meatballs, Quiche Me Quick, and Diamond Lovers' Hot Crab Dip, and digging up clues, Goldy knows this is going to be one tough case to crack. And her gourmet sleuth's instinct tells her the final course will be a real killer.
--This text refers to the Audio Cassette edition.

Product Details

Product Description

From Amazon

When Colorado caterer Goldy Schulz is hired by her old friend Barry Dean to provide a lavish buffet for the opening of his chic new Aspen Meadows mall, the last thing she expects to stumble over is Barry himself, stabbed to death with one of her very own carving knives. When the police arrest her assistant, Julian, for the murder, Goldy launches her own over-caffeinated investigation. There's enough espresso in this culinary cozy to keep the reader wide awake while Davidson's irrepressible heroine sets up the suspects, solves the mystery, sends up a Shopaholics Anonymous meeting, and dishes up 10 recipes for fabulous party food, including the Chopping Spree salad of the title. The plot's somewhat creaky and there's hardly any dramatic tension, but fans of this popular series won't mind a bit. --Jane Adams --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Library Journal

Catering a fancy event for a bunch of high-end shoppers gets sleuthing chef Goldy all stirred up. Includes ten new recipes.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars A whole lotta latte going on Dec 16 2007
By Amanda Richards HALL OF FAME TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I'd heard about this series from friends, but this is the first one I've actually read. Chopping Spree is book eleven of the series, which now has fourteen books.

1. Catering to Nobody
2. Dying for Chocolate
3. The Cereal Murders
4. The Last Suppers
5. Killer Pancake
6. The Main Corpse
7. The Grilling Season
8. Prime Cut
9. Tough Cookie
10. Sticks and Scones
11. Chopping Spree
12. Double Shot
13. Dark Tort
14. Sweet Revenge

The series features Gertrude "Goldy" Schulz, a Colorado caterer who solves murder mysteries between courses. What's different about these books is that each book includes a set of recipes for dishes being served up by Goldilock's Catering.

Everybody who knows me knows that I'm no cook, but I do enjoy good food and a murder mystery. Unfortunately, something seemed missing from this book, and I didn't enjoy it as much as I thought I would have.

Short Attention Span Summary (SASS):

Goldy is hired to cater a party at a shopping mall for a group of "Elite Shoppers".
Goldy consumes a lot of espresso and chocolate
Someone tries to run a truck over Goldy and friends just before the event starts.
Someone succeeds in killing somebody else, with a knife, in the shopping mall.
The clues point towards Goldilock's Catering.
Goldy downs more caffeine.
Goldy hunts down the killer, keeps her hubby happy, tolerates her bratty son, chops and dices, snoops and spies, deals with personal problems of her assistants, and yes, drinks enough coffee to cause a worldwide bean shortage.

Recipes in this book:
1. Spice of Life Cookies
2. Shoppers' Chocolate Truffles
3. Sweethearts' Swedish Meatballs in Burgundy Sauce
Read more ›
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5.0 out of 5 stars Perfectly catered, tasty little bon-bon of a read Sept. 1 2003
Format:Mass Market Paperback
In contrast to other reviewers, I find the plotting in this Davidson novel to be more complex and the suspicious characters to be better developed than in her previous books. The victim was a bad guy, a good guy, a two-timer, a lover who wanted (and maybe expected himself) to become faithful, a good friend, and an exploiter -- yes, all rolled into one interesting, attractive man. Likewise, the people who might have knocked him off hardly arouse indifference.
Solve riddles, read recipes, go to a Shopper's Anonymous meeting, sigh at the mistakes we all make with our children: yes, indeed, you can get a lot done reading this book. It is also a great introduction to what passes for springtime on the eastern slopes of the Rockies and to the burgeoning (some would say out of control) commercial and residential development happening here.
I had allowed myself to be put off by reviews here and finally picked up the book for a holiday weekend. I was not in the least disappointed -- except that it had taken me so long to get to it. The book engaged my brain, made me laugh out loud, and brought on ruminations about how life -- and our outrageous mistakes in it -- catches up with us all.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Incredibly disappointing! July 29 2003
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I have stated in my reviews of some of Diane Mott Davidson's other books in this series that I have come to regard Goldy and her family, along with Marla & Julian, almost as real people as she has done such a good job of describing them and making their lives so realistic.
I don't know what in the world has happened during the writing of this book. As I was reading this book on vacation with family, I told them a few times that if it were not for the dedication in the front of the book, I would almost believe someone else had written it. In this book, Goldy is completely irresponsible as a parent, Arch is a caricature of an angst-ridden teenager, Marla is in a few scenes and behaves like a rich snob towards everyone, including her supposedly best friend Goldy, Tom was nearly non-existenet except to make an occasional meal and pamper to Goldy's whining....and the list goes on.
All of these anomalies were so distracting to me, that I really didn't care much who did what to whom with regards to the murder and other crimes. I hope the next in the series will be back to Ms. Davidson's writing standards.
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3.0 out of 5 stars My first Goldy book June 24 2003
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Goldy Schulz, owner and operator of her Goldilocks Catering, is hired by her old coffee drinking friend Barry Dean to cater a party at the high-scale shopping mall he's the manager of. Barry is murdered at the mall after the party and the whodunit begins. Goldy is on the case at once and not only because it was her friend that was murdered, but also because her family friend is the prime suspect!! Goldy puts the clues together in between cups of espresso and solves the mystery.
Chopping Spree was the first Diane Mott Davidson book I have read. I wasn't sure if I would like the book but must admit it was a very easy to read book. The plot was good and moved along at a fast pace. The characters were all interesting, even though they may not all be likable. I believe this book would have been more enjoyable had I read the previous books by this author. Even though this is a free standing book it seems as if the characters had a history that was revealed in earlier books. The reader might better understand the relationship between Goldy and Arch and Tom had they read the earlier books in order. But once you get going in this book it doesn't really matter because everyone and everything gets sorted out and becomes understood. This book is a light mystery also which was very pleasing. There isn't a lot of yucky blood and gore scenes. This was a definite plus in reading this book.
I wasn't really fond of the recipes right in the middle of the chapters. I found I was reading along at a good pace and then would have to spend extra seconds turning through recipes. I agree with earlier reviewers that the recipes should have been at the end of the chapters or the back of the book.
All in all this was a very satisfying book to read. There is enough coffee drank and food ate to make you gain five pounds while reading, but it's all worth it. I am now trying to decide which Goldy book I want to read next!
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Most recent customer reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Loosen your belts
It seems all they do in this book is cook and eat! This is the second only book I've read by this authour. I could care less about the receipes, I'm not going to try any of them. Read more
Published on April 2 2004 by bookworm
4.0 out of 5 stars CHOPPING SPREE
While this was not one of Ms. Davidson's best effort.
It was enjoyable to me in that I love the recipes and
the description of the Mall background.
Published on Oct. 10 2003 by Donna Mckenzie
This is a really good book. This has wonderful recipes! This time Goldy is catering to a bunch of ritzy custermers at the malll. Read more
Published on Sept. 21 2003 by booklover
5.0 out of 5 stars Murder, mayhem and great recipes!
Davidson's culinary mysteries explore the complex world of family relationships with as much intensity as they explore the mystery of the specific crime Goldie is investigating. Read more
Published on Sept. 13 2003
3.0 out of 5 stars not Davidson's best but still enjoyable
This latest in the generally excellent culinary mystery series by Diane Mott Davidson, is a little less inspired than some of her other works. Read more
Published on Sept. 8 2003 by Karen Sampson Hudson
3.0 out of 5 stars Chopping Spree
Davidson's books are easy reads and good for vacationing, but no mind challengers. I've found that, after reading several over the years, I'm impatient with the main character who... Read more
Published on Aug. 1 2003
4.0 out of 5 stars Julian's back!
I think I'd actually give this 3 and half, if one could give half stars. Yes, one does have to wonder how Goldy gets into all the trouble that she does. Read more
Published on June 12 2003 by C. S. Stockwell
1.0 out of 5 stars Caffeine junkie cooks a meal.
It took me a good bit of time to get through this book...i had read others in the series...but this!...Goldy Schulz needs to have a talk with that rude child of hers...and Ms. Read more
Published on June 7 2003
1.0 out of 5 stars Enough already
Will someone PLEASE disable Ms. Davidson's italics key!
Published on June 6 2003
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