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Raspberry Danish Murder (A Hannah Swensen Mystery Book 22) Kindle Edition
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Hannah Swensen has been feeling as bitter as November in Minnesota since her husband, Ross, vanished without a trace and left their marriage in limbo. Still, she throws herself into a baking frenzy for the sake of pumpkin pie and Thanksgiving-themed treats while endless holiday orders pour into The Cookie Jar. Hannah even introduces a raspberry Danish pastry to the menu, and P.K., her husband’s assistant at KCOW-TV, will be one of the first to sample it. But before taking a bite, P.K.—who’s been driving Ross’s car and using his desk at work—is murdered. Was someone plotting against P.K.—or did Ross dodge a deadly dose of sweet revenge? Hannah will have to quickly sift through a cornucopia of clues and suspects to stop a killer from bringing another murder to the table.
Features over a dozen cookie and dessert recipes from The Cookie Jar!
“Joanne Fluke is the doyenne of deadly desserts with her deliciously popular Hannah Swensen series.”—Publishers Weekly
From the Publisher
Meet Joanne Fluke
-- How did you start writing food mysteries?
My editor at Kensington, John Scognamiglio, asked me if I’d like to try my hand at writing a cozy mystery series. I asked him what that was, he explained, and as he was explaining I remember that book I’d tried to sell years ago. It contained many of my family’s cookie recipes and I had been very disappointed when it hadn’t been published. I asked John if I could put recipes in my cozy mysteries, he said yes, and Hannah Swensen, owner of The Cookie Jar in Lake Eden, Minnesota, was born.
-- How did you come up with the idea of a murder based on different dishes? When you started, did you envision a long-running series? How many books do you plan for the series?
When I started writing the Hannah Swensen series, I limited myself to cookie and bar cookie recipes. When the first book did well, John and I discussed it and we decided to branch out to desserts. Gradually, since Hannah entertained her two boyfriends so often for dinner, the books began to include main dishes and quick breads.
-- Have you always been a cook? What are your favorite dishes to serve others?
I’m not like Hannah Swensen’s mother, Delores, I DO cook and bake. I started baking when I was four years old by stirring the bowl for my mother and grandmother. They encouraged me and I kept it up, all through high school and college. Whenever I get a hankering for a particular dessert, main dish, or bread, I experiment and come up with something. We’ve eaten some great meals throughout the years and I’ve also had some colossal failures. A word to the wise; Don’t put tomato soup in a tuna casserole! The night I tried that, we called out for pizza.
Attempting to choose my favorite dishes is difficult. It makes me too hungry! But because you asked me, I’ll give it a try. I have two favorite cookies, Chocolate Chip Crunch Cookies in Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder, and the new cookie that will be published in RASPBERRY DANISH MURDER, Chocolate Butterscotch Crunch Cookies. My favorite main dish is John Brady’s Irish Chili in Sugar Cookie Murder, my favorite pie is the Lemon Meringue Pie in Lemon Meringue Pie Murder, and my favorite bread recipe is the one for Blue Apple Muffins in Blackberry Pie Murder. My favorite cakes are Red Devil’s Food Cake in Devil’s Food Cake Murder and the Cherry Cheesecake in Cherry Cheesecake Murder. And because I didn’t mention bar cookies, my favorite is the Double Fudge Brownies in Double Fudge Brownie Murder.
You’ll have to excuse me for a second. I’m going to preheat the oven because I’m really getting hungry!
-- You’ve cooked many cookies for fans. How did that start? Do fans cook for you?
I began bringing cookies to book signings and book fairs from the very beginning. It just seemed like a natural thing to do. I don’t do that as much as I used to because it’s not easy to travel with cookies or anything that can crumble or break.
The Hannah fans occasionally bake for me and bring yummy things to book signings. They generally accompany their baked goods with a favorite family recipe. If I really like the recipe, I’ll use it in a Hannah book, but I always give credit to the Hannah fan who gave it to me. If you see that Hannah got a recipe from Genevieve, an old friend she knew in college, or from Lisa’s cousin, Toby, and those names don’t belong to any characters in the books, you’ll know that I received those particular recipes from Hannah fans named Genevieve and Toby.
-- What was it like having your books made into TV movies? Any surprises?
It was wonderful to actually see Hannah on the screen. And even though Alison Sweeney is not a redhead and she isn’t overweight, she’s completely believable as the “movie” Hannah. The whole cast and crew are incredibly talented and I couldn’t be happier. At first, the Hannah fans were anxious about the differences between the characters in the books and the movie characters, but after the first movie, Chocolate Chip Cookie Mystery, aired on the Hallmark Movies and Mysteries channel, they emailed to say that they thought it was just as wonderful as I did. With such a talented cast and crew, the Hannah movies are like a dream come true for all of us.
--Did they make more Hannah movies?
Yes. They’ve done three so far, Chocolate Chip Cookie Mystery, Plum Pudding Mystery, and Peach Cobbler Mystery. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that there will be many more movies in the Hannah Swensen franchise.
-- What do you think makes the cozy mystery genre so popular with readers? Do all of your books include a romance thread?
I think one of the reason that cozy mysteries are so popular is that people need a chance to get away from the everyday trials and tribulations of their lives. Cozy mysteries are set in a kinder, gentler world (except for the murders, of course). There’s a little humor, a little romance, and a little jeopardy, but everything always turns out all right in the end.
-- What’s your favorite thing about writing food-themed mysteries?
My favorite part is testing the recipes. I always make them at least three times and they must turn out perfectly all three times to be included in a Hannah book. After I test them, my son’s girlfriend tests them. My dear friend Trudi tests certain recipes for me. Trudi and I have great fun talking about the various common and unusual ingredients we might combine to come up with something delicious.
-- What’s next in the series? And beyond?
The next book in the series is RASPBERRY DANISH MURDER which will be released on February 27, 2018. Then there’s CHRISTMAS CAKE MURDER coming in October 2018. We’ve already got our plans ready for a Hannah mystery in 2019 and my editor and I have decided on the title. It will be CHOCOLATE CREAM PIE MURDER. I’m experimenting with Hannah’s version of that pie right now.
-- Anything else you’d like to add?
I think we’ve covered everything. And now, I’m going off to the kitchen to bake a Chocolate Cream Pie.
Get the Recipe that Started it All!
CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE CRUNCH
Preheat oven to 375° F.,
rack in the middle position.
1 cup butter (2 sticks, melted)
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 beaten eggs (you can beat them up with a fork)
2 ½ cups flour (not sifted)
2 cups crushed corn flakes (just crush them with your hands)
1 to 2 cups chocolate chips
Melt butter, add the sugars and stir. Add soda, salt, vanilla, and beaten eggs. Mix well. Then add flour and stir it in. Add crushed corn flakes and chocolate chips and mix it all thoroughly.
Form dough into walnut-sized balls with your fingers and place on a greased cookie sheet, 12 to a standard sheet. Press them down slightly with a floured or greased spatula.
Bake at 375 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes. Cool on cookie sheet for 2 minutes, then remove to a wire rack
until they’re completely cool. (The rack is important—it makes them crisp.)
Yield: 6 to 8 dozen, depending on cookie size.
(These cookies have been Andrea’s favorites since high school.)
Hannah’s Note: If these cookies spread out too much in the oven, reduce temp. to 350° F. and do not flatten before baking.
About the Author
- ASIN : B071SK3STR
- Publisher : Kensington Cozies (February 27, 2018)
- Publication date : February 27, 2018
- Language : English
- File size : 2666 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 417 pages
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #33,822 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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It’s a cute and charming series and I will still read it, but Hannah seems like a person from an earlier generation when she does things like look up a store in the phone book or call the Better Business Bureau—I’m thinking the author is even less techie than her main character. And the descriptions people hanging up their coats or doctoring their coffee are just tedious. Please finish up the interesting plot about Ross and skip the minutiae.
It's also contains filler paragraphs that serve no purpose other than to add pages. Why oh why do we need to read that Hannah has five voice messages, and then descriptions of five marketing junk messages. Pure fill.
The Ross story gets more ridiculous as it goes along. I enjoy these characters but it's time to end this series with some dignity.
I continue to purchase these books, after the price drops substantially, because after reading I pass them on to my sister, otherwise I'd pass.
Top reviews from other countries
The story in this one is quite strong so whilst I wouldn't describe it as a return to form it was good enough to make me buy next year's offering.