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Robert Edler "Master Of Mystery" (Saint Louis, Missouri USA) - See all my reviews
OK, I admit it, I'm a junk food junkie and my dining out usually usually takes me to only the finest four star workaurants. But that doesn't stop me from reading and salivating over every restaurant review I see. The same goes for most of the programs on The Food Network! So naturally, Phyllis Richman's book was written for me and me alone. (OK, you can read it, too!)
To get down to the basic facts, Chas Wheatley is a food critic for a D.C. newspaper who just happens to leave a trail of dead bodies behind her as she eats her way from one four star restaurant to the next. Realizing that something is rotten in the Danish, she sets out to solve the culinary crime capers that are being served up around her.
Ms. Richman is a very witty writer and I enjoyed her bright and gossip-filled style. I also enjoyed all the insider tips on the behind the scene secret going-ons of restaurant operations that she adds to her story telling! And I always thought the stories of the White Castle pickle barrel were an urban myth.
Once you get a taste of this book you'll probably be buying the other books in the series just like I'm doing.
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4.0 out of 5 stars 5 stars for insider's tidbits, 3 stars for writing and plot, June 14 2001
Carol Peterson Hennekens (Colorado Springs, CO United States) - See all my reviews
The real fun of Phyllis Richman's series about Chas Wheatley is all of the insider tips about the restaurant business. For that alone, this book is worth the time it takes to read. In this book Chas is working on a series of columns about how restaurants manipulate (if not plain cheat) their customers to spend much more money than planned.
The problem with this book stems from this same subject. At times, Richman loses sight of her fiction writing and writes with a lecturer's tone. It's a mixed blessing as the information is often fascinating. Still, it disturbs the pacing of the fictional plot. The plot/mystery in this book is a bit far-fetched but the book is set in Washington D.C. It's being to appear that almost anything can happen there.
Bottom-line: A fun read for anyone who engages in recreational restauranting. Reading of her first book "The Butter Did It" would be helpful but isn't critical.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Scrumptious, July 21 2000
By A Customer
I very much enjoyed this second Chas Wheatley mystery, which I hope the author will continue as a lengthy series. I liked the new characters and although the murders themselves weren't described in great detail, I think the strategy works in that my desire to read from a foodie's perspective was greater than my desire to read a grisly murder mystery. I am also glad that some of the characters from "The Butter Did It" were reprised. I love the vicarious thrill of seeing the restaurant industry from the inside!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Strong flavor, pleasing presentation..., Feb. 20 2001
MixedUpMutt "bp" (Portland, OR United States) - See all my reviews
This is the 2nd in the series chronicling the day to day life of the restaurant critic Chas Wheatley. If you've ever been involved in the restaurant business or even if you've eaten at a restaurant this light mystery will keep you reading. The characters are colorful and the plot keeps you smiling and more then often trying to determine what culinary creations one should cook up for dinner!
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