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Basic Instinct Review
Philadelphia area Miracolo Northern Italia restaurant, helmed by seventy-six-year old Maria Pia Angelotta, has been in the family for four generations. Her granddaughter Eve Angelotta was her chief chef and other family members and friends completed the staff. Life was relatively smooth until Eve found out her "Nonna" was invited to join a secret Italian culinary society.
Those who joined the women only society automatically became life members. If anyone tried to leave, their life was at stake. When Eve and her cousin Landon discovered what their grandmother did, they conducted an online search which yielded little information except a blog post warning other women not to get involved.
In the meantime, Eve began teaching a basic cooking class at a local career center. She recruited two of the young women to work at Miracolo because they showed promise in culinary skills.
The day Maria Pia was to create her special meal for the culinary society, Eve went to the restaurant when she realized she had forgotten to call the cleaning crew. When she tried to get in, she discovered her new sous chef’s body was blocking the door on the inside.
From that time on, she had two goals. Make sure Maria Pia’s evening was perfect, and she needed to find out who killed the sous chef.
Basil Instinct is the second book in a cozy mystery series created by Shelley Costa following You Cannoli Die Once. So far the stories center on the Miracolo restaurant, the people who work there, and the numerous people of the Philadelphia area who enjoy the cuisine.
This entertaining series will have readers laughing out loud at the antics of those who work in the restaurant, especially Maria Pia’s granddaughter, Eve. She basically carries the load and keeps the story moving forward, although others, such as her cousin Landon, play a huge part as well.
The characters are endearing and by the end of the book, the reader most likely will have their favorites. They may even discover they seem more like friends than strangers in a novel. Many of the characters are carried through from the first book to the next providing a nice continuity and an opportunity to get to know various individuals.
The reveal was a surprise although clues were provided throughout. We highly recommended if you are looking for a laugh out loud culinary mystery, you check out this series. You do not have to read the books in order, but starting with You Cannoli Die Once does provide more background.
A special thank you goes to Simon and Schuster for providing us with a complimentary copy of this book.
You can find Shelly Costa’s books at Amazon.com.
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