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Fiber & Brimstone (Scrapbooking Mystery, Bk 8) (A Scrapbooking Mystery) Hardcover – October 5, 2010

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4 Stars and Up Feature: Kitchens of the Great Midwest
"Foodies and those who love contemporary literature will devour this novel that is being compared to Elizabeth Strout's Olive Kitteridge. A standout." --Library Journal Learn more

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Halloween season in a revitalized, post-Katrina New Orleans provides the backdrop for Childs's colorful, briskly plotted eighth scrapbooking mystery (after 2009's Tragic Magic). When Brett Fowler, a Big Easy Ponzi schemer, gets fatally gored by the horns of a Minotaur head for the French Quarter's Monsters and Mayhem Torchlight Parade, suspicion falls on art appraiser Jekyl Hardy, the float designer who created the mythical beast's head. Jekyl's old friends and fellow float designers, Carmela Bertrand, the proprietor of Memory Mine, "a cozy little scrapbook shop," and Ava Gruiex, of Juju Voodoo, determine to clear his name. Catching the real killer is a job, of course, for NOPD Lt. Edgar Babcock, Carmela's main squeeze, but the detecting chops of artsy Carmela and her saucy sidekick, Ava, totally steal his thunder. Scrapbooking tips and recipes for dishes like candied fruit banana bread and Dr. Pepper tickle-your-ribs spareribs round out a volume sure to please cozy fans.
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About the Author

Laura Childs is the New York Times bestselling author of the Cackleberry Club, Tea Shop, and Scrapbooking mysteries. In her past life she was a Clio Award–winning advertising writer and CEO of her own marketing firm. She lives in Plymouth, Minnesota.
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Product Details

  • Series: A Scrapbooking Mystery (Book 8)
  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley Hardcover; First Edition edition (October 5, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425236749
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425236741
  • Product Dimensions: 5.6 x 1.2 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #557,957 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Laura Childs is the New York Times bestselling author of the Tea Shop Mysteries, Scrapbook Mysteries, and Cackleberry Club Mysteries. In her previous life she was CEO/Creative Director of her own marketing firm and authored several screenplays. She is married to a professor of Chinese art history, loves to travel, rides horses, enjoys fund raising for various non-profits, and has two Chinese Shar-Pei dogs.

Laura specializes in cozy mysteries that have the pace of a thriller (a thrillzy!) Her three series are:

The Tea Shop Mysteries - set in the historic district of Charleston and featuring Theodosia Browning, owner of the Indigo Tea Shop. Theodosia is a savvy entrepreneur, and pet mom to service dog Earl Grey. She's also an intelligent, focused amateur sleuth who doesn't rely on coincidences or inept police work to solve crimes. This charming series is highly atmospheric and rife with the history and mystery that is Charleston.

The Scrapbooking Mysteries - a slightly edgier series that take place in New Orleans. The main character, Carmela, owns Memory Mine scrapbooking shop in the French Quarter and is forever getting into trouble with her friend, Ava, who owns the Juju Voodoo shop. New Orleans' spooky above-ground cemeteries, jazz clubs, bayous, and Mardi Gras madness make their presence known here!

The Cackleberry Club Mysteries - set in Kindred, a fictional town in the Midwest. In a rehabbed Spur station, Suzanne, Toni, and Petra, three semi-desperate, forty-plus women have launched the Cackleberry Club. Eggs are the morning specialty here and this cozy cafe even offers a book nook and yarn shop. Business is good but murder could lead to the cafe's undoing! This series offers recipes, knitting, cake decorating, and a dash of spirituality.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on October 9, 2010
Format: Hardcover
In New Orleans, Brett Fowler has worked a successful Ponzi scheme on a city recovering from Katrina. However, someone must have become outraged by his con because during the French Quarter's Monsters and Mayhem Torchlight Parade, he is killed by a minotaur horn stabbing him.

Art appraiser Jekyl Hardy designed the float that included the mythical creature. As such he is a person of interest to the New Orleans Police Department investigating the suspicious death. Jekyl's float designers' friends, Carmela Bertrand the owner of Memory Mine scrapbook shop and Ava Gruiex the owner of Juju Voodoo, believe he is innocent and set out to prove their assertion. NOPD Police Lieutenant Edgar Babcock begs with his girlfriend Carmela to stay out of the case that he leads in what is now believed to be a homicide investigation. However, as he expected to his chagrin, Carmela and Ava ignore his plea and continue their investigation.

The latest Scrapbooking amateur sleuth (see Tragic Magic and Death Swatch) is an enjoyable New Orleans cozy. The story line is fast-paced from the moment the two BFFs start their investigation. With Scrapbooking tips and mouth watering recipes on top of a fun investigation, fans will appreciate zesty Fiber & Brimstone.

Harriet Klausner
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By D. Baker on October 13, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Halloween always draws out the ghosts and goblins in us all. New Orleans the perfect setting for the ghouls and vampires that are walking around these days, but when real corpses start making an appearance things get really scary. Carmela Bertrand and her best friend Ava Gruiex are immersed in building a monster puppet for the Monsters and Mayhem Torchlight Parade when they stumble upon the body of Brett Fowler.

Carmela's good friend Jekyl finds himself embroiled in the center of the investigation since he was heard arguing with Brett shortly before Brett's body was discovered. Having known Jekyl for years, Carmela is convinced that someone is framing him. While Brett owed Jekyl money, he owed money to many people after being indicted for his involvement in a Ponzi scheme. With so many suspects can Carmela discover the real murderer and clear Jekyl?

Review:
I love the Big Easy and the flavor but I wasn't comfortable right away with the vernacular. I adjusted rather quickly and became immersed in the story. Being a southerner myself, and one who lived for a time in the deep south I can be a little picky over the way southerners are portrayed in books. Laura Childs did this well. The story is fun and perfect for a cozy Halloween. And I must admit-for a change-it took me a while to even guess who the murderer could be.

This is the first of Laura Childs cozy mysteries that I have read but I am sure it will not be the last. Carmela is a fun, stable character while her friends Ava provides the quirkiness. Halloween is the perfect setting for a mystery. And what better place than New Orleans! In addition to the mystery the book also includes some scrapping tips as well as a few recipes. I tried one of the recipes and it was delicious: Carmela's Cajun Shrimp Bake.

If you like cozy mysteries this one will be a delight. Grab a bottle of wine, fix a plate of Shrimp, and enjoy the story.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Sabrina Estrada on November 29, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book represents some of the best writing from Laura Childs I've seen in a while. I like to keep up on all three of her series and have been disappointed by the last books from the other two. This one is the kind of writing that made me like her from the beginning; her vivid descriptions make you feel like you've been to the French Quarter and the murder motivations are passably entertaining.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Katie C. Nelson VINE VOICE on November 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Nothing is better than getting cozy with a book on a cold and rainy night. I've been reading this scrapbooking mystery for the past few nights and enjoying it so much. I love mysteries and I especially like Laura Childs' books because she keeps them interesting, just a bit scary, but not gruesome. They are just right for me. Sort of like Nancy Drew for grown-up girls. Mysteries have always been my very favorite type of fiction, even when I was quite young.

Fiber and Brimstone is a great little book that features Carmella as the main character. It is set in New Orleans which is a wonderful backdrop for a story. This one takes place at Halloween time, so it has been fun to read it in season. I also love that the author includes recipes at the back of the book that go along with the story. I'm totally craving Pralines now!

I've also read most of her other scrapbooking mysteries. I've loved all of them! I think I only missed one of them, Tragic Magic - not sure how that happened, but I will have to go back and read it. The nice thing is that even though the books are part of a series all about the same character, you don't have to read them in order for them to make sense. I haven't tried any of her Tea Shop mysteries, but I did read and enjoy Eggs in Purgatory.

If you are looking for a relaxing read, I totally recommend Laura Childs scrapbooking mysteries.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Cozy Mystery Lover on November 10, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Just finished this latest in the scrapbook shop mystery series set in New Orleans by Laura Childs, and enjoyed it as I have all in this series. Never too serious, too gruesome, too unsettling. You know it will work out in the end. It's fun to try to figure out "who done it." There is humor and fun mixed in with solving the mystery. Appreciate the references to current events (i.e.,Hurricane Katrina) and how the city is slowly rebounding from the destruction. It gives you hope. Connecting it with scrapbooking, with creative tips and ideas just adds to the appeal to one who is "into" that. Recipes at the back are another great addition. It's fun, it's escape, it's cozy. Am looking forward to her next book.
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