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Tough Cookie (Goldy Culinary Mysteries, Book 9) Mass Market Paperback – April 3, 2001

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Fans of Diane Mott Davidson's Goldy Schulz, the gourmet gumshoe of Aspen Meadow, Colorado, love her modus operandi: "Treat every puzzle with questions and chocolate." In Tough Cookie, Davidson's ninth culinary mystery, Goldy is waiting to reopen her catering business, which has been shut down by the health department for lack of adequate drains. She's got a PBS cooking gig for a few weeks, and is trying to build a reputation as a personal chef, but she's desperate for a little extra Christmas cash, so she agrees to sell a pair of vintage skis to Doug Portman, a local art critic and former sort-of-romantic interest.

When Portman's killed in a skiing accident at Killdeer Resort with Goldy nearby, the police treat her with suspicion. It turns out that Portman was the easily persuaded head of the Parole Board, and Goldy's ex-husband (a.k.a. The Jerk, who was imprisoned for domestic violence) is coming up for parole. But when Goldy herself narrowly escapes a chilly death after her van is forced off a snowy highway, she starts looking for connections and steps into a minefield of unsolved murders, including the three-year-old avalanche death of her friend Nate Bullock. There're a multitude of suspicious characters lurking around Killdeer: Barton Reed, a crazy ex-con who sent Portman a letter loaded with poison; Arthur Wakefield, whose wealthy mother was also killed in a skiing accident at Killdeer; Jack Gilkey, a handsome young chef who was convicted of manslaughter in the death of Wakefield's mother (and released by Portman); Boots Faraday, a local artist; and even Rorry Bullock, Nate's angry widow. As usual, Goldy manages to solve the murders (with the help of Chocolate Coma Cookies), save her own skin (just!), skewer a few local snobs in passing, and revive her catering business. Lots of fun, and recipes too. --Barrie Trinkle --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

Chef/amateur sleuth Goldy Schulz returns for a ninth outing in Davidson's popular culinary mystery series. Goldy's home-based catering business in the Colorado high country is temporarily suspended by drain problems, so she accepts a stint on a PBS cooking show before the Christmas holidays. After a meeting with Goldy, Doug Portman, her wealthy ex-boyfriend, is found dead on a back country ski run, with thousands of dollars flying from his pockets. Goldy discovers that an old acquaintance, Nate Bullock, had also been discovered there after an avalanche in almost the same spot three years earlier, and she herself is a victim of misadventure when her van is nudged over a cliff. Determined to find the killer lurking on the ski slopes, Goldy unearths motives aplenty, possibly among her culinary friends in a mountain restaurant. Davidson's creative recipes, scattered liberally throughout the narrative, add flavor to this spirited tale, which follows Goldy from one life-threatening escapade to the next. The characters are sometimes too good to be true (such as Goldy's husband, who's a county sheriff), but others have a refreshing edge, like pink-haired coffee-shop owner Cinda Caldwell. The ending is cookie-cutter predictable, but overall this is hearty fare for those who like their murder with a bit of nosh on the side. Agent, Sandra Dijkstra. (Mar.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam (April 3, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553578308
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553578300
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.7 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (113 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #508,714 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Diane Mott Davidson is the author of more than ten bestselling mysteries. She lives with her family in Colorado.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

43 of 45 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on March 1, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Aspen Meadows, Colorado resident Goldy Schultz knows she has much to be thankful for just before Christmas. Her abusive ex-spouse "The Jerk" is in jail on assault charges. Goldy has her own cooking show on PBS that is being taped at the Kildeer Ski Resort's Summit Bistro. More important, Goldy has the love and respect of her husband, Police Detective Tom Schultz and her son Arch. On the negative side, Goldy remains upset that the health department closed her successful Goldilock's Catering business due to poor drainage.

Tom frantically tries to fix the facility problem before Goldy's business is ruined. To raise some need liquid capital, Goldy plans to sell Tom's antique skis to her ex-boyfriend Doug Portmont, head of the state parole board. Before they complete the transaction, Goldy finds Doug's murdered body on a ski slope. An investigation proves Doug was on the take, making it seem as if Goldy was paying him with the valuable skis to keep her ex behind bars. Refusing to allow The Jerk to damage her, her family or her business Goldy begins her own investigation into the victim's affairs.

Do not read this novel on an empty stomach because the mouth-watering recipes will leave readers raiding their refrigerator or traveling to the nearest restaurant. Goldy remains in tiptop fighting form as she confidently finds clues that lead her into more dangerous inquiries. Diane Mott Davidson is the Julia Child of culinary mysteries as she weaves a plot filled with red herrings and delightfully bakes them into her story line, making for a continuity that is shared in other Goldy tales. The audience feels they are sharing a gourmet meal with old friends, as TOUGH COOKIE is actually a victory layer cake.

Harriet Klausner
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44 of 48 people found the following review helpful By Dee C. on March 5, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Once again, the author delivers a delicious mystery entwined with mouth watering recipes! Goldy has to find a way to earn a living without the use of her catering business, at least until her brand new kitchen passes the county health inspector's rigorous inspection. Leave it to Goldy to find a way! She tries her hand at a TV cooking show, and winds up in the middle of a murder mystery. As she tries to figure out who killed her old boyfriend, she will tempt you with recipes for crab cakes, ginger snaps, oatmeal and of course, chocolate cookies. I couldn't put the book down - except to grab a bite to eat! If you have enjoyed Diane Mott Davidson's other novels, you will certainly love this one. And if you are new to this author, you will want to read more! I recommend this book to anyone who loves a good mystery, and who loves to eat!
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Suzanne on October 14, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I have read and enjoyed all the books in the Goldy Schultz series. I find them quite entertaining and relatively easy reading when you don't feel like reading something that would be mind boggling. I also enjoy her recipes and have tried quite a few of them. As far as the story goes, I am amazed, however, at how Goldy can just wander into her kitchen (after just being almost killed by someone, somehow) and whip up a fabulous meal. Better yet, she has a hunk of a husband that is a gourment cooking policemen too!! What a life! But I do think these books are fun. The only comment I would make about this one, is that I would have liked to have seen more participation in the story by her best friend Marla and also more of Julian. I think Tom (the husband) should have had more to do besides cook and work on the plumbing. I am hoping that in her next book her son starts to mature and not be so sullen all the time. If you are looking for a real serious novel, this isn't it. But if you enjoy a fun mystery and some recipes, this is your book! Enjoy! and I am looking forward to the next book.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Michael Butts HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on June 20, 2000
Format: Hardcover
"Tough Cookie" is a great way to be distracted and entertained at the same time. Goldy once again manages to get herself into more trouble and sure she should know better, but if she did, then we wouldn't have a book, would we? Diane's characters again are interesting, complex and for the most part, believable. This time out Goldy is caught up in the murder of an old boyfriend (although they only had three dates) and the previous death of an old friend in an avalanche. The ski setting, Christmas background, and snow, snow, snow, are great assets in this mystery. I have to admit that the killer is easier to pick out in this one, but that's okay; she throws enough red herrings to make you think you're wrong. And the climax is a good one. This would do great on film. I ponder, though, one fellow customer's review who thought Tom Schulz was fat. Did I miss something way back in his introduction. I never got the impression he was fat? Just big---there is a difference! Oh, well, Davidson fans rejoice---it's a solid entry in this entertaining and mouthwatering series!
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Barbara O'Neill on March 5, 2000
Format: Hardcover
After waiting a whole year for this new entry on Davidson's menu, I found myself reading straight though and staying up until I finished Tough Cookie. I found myself relating to Goldy's funk over her teen son's 'growing pains' (Been there. Done that. survived!) and I found myself with heart in throat while reading the descriptions of maneuvering mountain passes in a blizzard.
Davidson throws enough curve balls throughout the story to have kept me guessing about the identity of the culprit until the end.
If there was one thing I would have liked more it's Tom Schultz. Lovable character, great hubby. And my only big disappointment is having to wait another year until the next entry is released.
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