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Fried by Jury Mass Market Paperback – May 6, 2003
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The reader can settle into Hemlock Falls comfortably. -- Armchair Detective
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Fried By Jury
By Claudia Bishop
Hemlock Falls, New York, sounds like a town I'd like to visit. I'd definitely enjoy a visit at the Inn at Hemlock Falls run by sisters Meg and Quill. I think that's why I enjoy this mystery series so much. It's set in a place I could see myself visiting.
Meg is the chef at the Inn and Quill is the manager. In this book the town's mayor, Elmer Henry, tries to convince Meg to judge the Fry Away Home contest being held in town. Meg emphatically refuses. She is appalled to be asked to judge a deep fat frying contest. Harry Holcomb of Holcomb's Wholesome Fried Chicken wants celebrity chef Banion O'Haggerty to judge the contest. Unfortunately O'Haggerty wants more money than Holcomb is offering. Elmer will have to come up with the difference. He'd rather Meg do it -- he wouldn't have to pay anything. Holcomb is opening the town's first Holcomb's Wholesome Fried Chicken. O'Haggerty arrives and decides to stay at the Inn. Meg hates O'Haggerty. Then Holcomb's most hated rival, Colonel Cluck, is setting up shop here, too, and decides to stay at the Inn as well.
O'Haggerty is found dead. Meg and her fiance, Andy (and the town doctor), are suspects. Meg and Quill jump into action to help solve the murder. Sheriff Myles Hales, who Quill sees on a regular basis, is not happy when Meg and Quill try to help. He even calls in an old friend he once worked with, Jordan Bellemarin, to run the investigation as he was too connected.
The setting in this book really assists this story. Having everyone staying under one roof helps in the investigation and "snooping." The characters are very well developed and life-like. The plot always has plenty of twists and turns. I definitely couldn't figure this one out ahead. I also like that Quill, who does most of the detecting, is smart. I don't like books where you can't figure out why they can't see what's right in front of them. I never feel that way in this series.
I highly recommend you read this book. It is the greatest in a long line of great books in this series.
In this story a master chef, hired to judge a fried food contest in Hemlock Falls, is found dead, and, as usual, there are suspects galore to sort through. And, as usual, at least one of the sisters' acquaintances is a possible suspect meaning that they must involve themselves in the mystery to save them.
I rated this one 3 stars as opposed to 4 as I figured the mystery out midway through the book; otherwise, it would have been 4 stars as it was enjoyable as most of the books in this series have been for me.
I have read many mystery series and have noticed one trend. At a certain point the author seems to get tired of doing the series and starts slacking off. It is like they don't care anymore and that is what I sense with this book.
It's a good thing that most of the others are much better.