Monday, June 22, 2015


Book 5 in the Hayley Powell 
Food and Cocktails Mystery series
by Lee Hollis

Who better than food and cocktails columnist Hayley Powell to book a caterer for the Island Times holiday party? But Hayley's quest for a cook turns into the pursuit of a killer who caters to no one. . .

Office Christmas parties can sometimes mean career suicide--but they rarely lead to murder. Hayley thought Garth Rawlings would be the perfect caterer for this year's bash, but when the gourmet sees her budget, he goes galloping. 

Unfortunately his run is short-lived. Garth is found dead on the floor of his kitchen, with his delectable creations burning in the oven. Faced with a spread of suspects, Hayley is determined to discover who would want to take out the Christmas caterer, because--no matter what the season--justice must be served. . .

Includes seven delectable recipes from Hayley's kitchen!


Before I start my review, I have to say I have been remiss in writing a review for this book. I should have done it last year (2014) when I read it, and indeed thought I had, only to find I hadn’t when I went to refer to my review for this title while writing one for the newest book in the series, DEATH OF A CUPCAKE QUEEN. It’s very important to post reviews ASAP, especially if you read the book when it first comes out. It helps the authors by letting the publisher see how well a book is liked, and it lets other readers see if they would also like to read it. Those numbers on the first week after release really help decide rather or not a series will continue. And I for one want all of my favorite series to continue, don’t you? Thanks. And now my review.

I loved DEATH IF A CHRISTMAS CATERER as much as every book in this series, and I’ll tell you . . . that is a lot! This is one of my favorite series and I always look forward to a new one. With this fifth book in the series, author Lee Hollis has penned another wonderfully thrilling well plotted, funny mystery. Honestly, it was one of the best so far.

Hayley Powell is one of the most imperfect protagonists in a cozy mystery I have ever read, and I have to say, I love that about her! She makes mistakes, gets caught way too much when she’s being nosey, and pretty much feels her way through every mystery she tries to solve. It’s great! She is the everyday woman that we can relate to. But I will give her credit, she always manages to save the day. J Hayley, her friends Libby and Mona, her brother Andy and his partner Sergio, and Hayley’s kids are among my favorite cast of characters.

I think you can start this series with any book and not be lost. But I would suggest reading them all because you will be treating yourself to one of the best cozy mystery series you’ve ever read. Trust me, you’ll find yourself laughing out loud.

There are also delicious recipes throughout the book, and a recipe index in the back to help you find each one easily. And check out the back of the book for an excerpt of DEATH OF A CUPCAKE QUEEN! 


Book 6 in the Hayley Powell 
Food and Cocktails Mystery series
by Lee Hollis 

As the food and cocktails columnist for the Island Times, Hayley Powell attends a lot of events—but this one will be murder…

On the eve of her high school reunion, Hayley dreads seeing the trio of mean girls who used to torment her: Sabrina Merryweather, Nykki Temple, and former prom queen Ivy Foster. These days Ivy wears a different crown as the cupcake queen—and flaunting her success is just the icing on the cake.

But maybe the prom queen should have been voted Most Likely to Die. At the reunion, Ivy is found murdered, cupcakes scattered around her. Is a killer out to teach the mean girls a lesson? As Hayley tries to get the scoop, she’ll have to be careful…or someone may be writing this columnist’s obituary next.

Includes seven delectable recipes from Hayley’s kitchen!


This series is one of the ones where I have got to get every book in the series when it comes out. I have stopped reading other books when I get a new Hayley Powell book to read. And with the word cupcake in the title . . . yeah, I was all over this one!

DEATH OF A CUPCAKE QUEEN is another wonderful installment in an already great series. Author Lee Hollis never ceases to amaze me with the quality of these fantastically fun mysteries that have me both enthralled and laughing out loud.

In this story, we learn more about Hayley’s high school years and the mean girls, including recurring series character Sabrina Merryweather, who made her teen years a misery. It was interesting to see the dynamics between them all. The author also brings in Gemma’s, Hayley’s daughter, high school prom, so things blended perfectly.  

DEATH OF A CUPCAKE QUEEN was another well written mystery. Author Hollis gave us plenty of suspects in the murder of Ivy Foster. She was unlikeable enough that anyone would be happy to see her dead. I had my suspect all picked out, then during the reveal, the rug was pulled out from under my feet and had me saying, OMG!

As always, yummy recipes included. And, there is a sneak peek into book seven, DEATH OF A BACON HEIRESS.

This really is a delightful series. If you’re already a fan of this series, you’re going to love this addition as much as I did. And for those who haven’t read it yet, I just know there are more Hayley Powell fans out there in the making once you check out this series for yourself. 

Both of these wonderful titles are available now. You're going to love them! 

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  1. Thanks, Lisa! I keep telling myself no more new authors/new series. Then, I read your reviews....I'm weak! :)

  2. I love this series. One of my favorites. I have the new one in my tbr.

  3. Thank you Lisa for the review. I will be adding this cozy series to my TBR list.