A touch of mystery and magic comes to the blog today with the seventh in the Magical Baking Mystery series from Bailey Cates. The first I’ve read in this cozy series, the story was clever and fun fun with a nice twist with Irish Travelers in this Savannah based story. Please read on for my review of
Potions and Pastries
The seventh book in this series opens after dinner in downtown Savannah, where Katie and Declan have just been out for a meal with Ben and Lucy to celebrate the 2nd anniversary of the Honeybee Bakery. Continuing the evening before Lucy and Katie return to the bakery to get their familiars, they walk along the waterfront where various street shows, merchants and entertainers are making the most of the setting and weather. Witnessing an odd conversation and scene at the Fortune Teller’s stall, Katie recognizes Orla, a friend of her Aunt Lucy and a customer. But, Orla is so much more – she has a prediction for Katie and a family that is nothing if not secretive and insular. The very next day, Orla walks in front of a car and is killed, shortly after a conversation with Katie and Lucy. Of course, nothing about Orla’s death feels right, and with a touch of interference from her grandmother’s gardenia scent, her familiar Mungo’s frantic barking and Declans long past (and thought to be banished) Leprechaun ancestor all pointing to murder, Katie’s curiosity is piqued.
Not having read the earlier titles in this series (and a situation I intend to remedy immediately) Cates does manage to introduce the many characters with enough information about their background and history of interactions, including Katie’s draw and need to investigate the deaths that have a connection to magic. It’s been, by her own estimation, a very busy couple of years with plenty of revelations: her understanding of her own hedgewitch heritage, learning about magic and understanding her own task to help the magical in need, finding a fiancé in Declan, and now her search for a new house for the two of them as the carriage house that she has customized and crafted into her home. She’s got plenty going on – and the questions about Orla, the Black family and their unfamiliar customs born of their Irish Traveler history all come into play in this story.
While the mystery grows as the Black family curls in upon itself against outsiders, and the dangers from hypnotic suggestions, fire and her own uncertain thoughts about her future, her choices and her options all unveil themselves, the story is both easy to read and engaging – keeping me intrigued with every page. A quiet community existing in the midst of tourist-rich Savannah – support, friendship and plenty of gossipy history is all there for the asking – and will have you wanting to find your own bakery with more.
Title: Potions and Pastries
Author: Bailey Cates
Series: Magical Bakery Mystery #7
Genre: Contemporary Cozy Mystery, Magic
Published by: Berkley
Published on: 7 November, 2017
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Audio Length: 7 Hours: 1 minute
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In this New York Times bestselling mystery series, witch Katie Lightfoot bakes enchanted treats--and faces more than her fair share of toil and trouble....
It's been exactly two years since Katie and her aunt and uncle opened the Honeybee Bakery, where they serve delicious--and bespelled--treats to the good people of Savannah. After a dinner celebrating the bakery's anniversary, they all take a stroll along the waterfront and meet Aunt Lucy's friend Orla, a colorful character who has been telling the fortunes of locals and tourists alike for years.
The next day, Orla meets with what seems like a terrible accident, but Katie's witchy intuition tells her it was something more sinister. Together with her trustworthy coven and her firefighter boyfriend, she'll race to find out what happened to the unfortunate fortune-teller before the piping hot trail goes cold....
A copy of this title was provided via Publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.