To perk themselves up after a case that resulted in a miscarriage for Sarah Booth Delaney and almost killed the husband of Tinkie Richmond, her partner in their fledgling detective agency (Greedy Bones, 2009, etc.), the girls head for a weekend at the posh Alluvian Hotel to take a few cooking classes, have a massage and a facial, and not think about crime. But those plans go kaput when the cooking pageant at the hotel sponsored by the Viking company suddenly loses two contestants to poison and a third falls into a coma. The local lawman is convinced that Hedy Lamarr Blackledge is viciously eliminating her competition, but Sarah Booth and Tinkie believe her innocent and take on the task of proving out who really done it. Their self-appointed mission involves sorting through voodoo gris-gris packets, old grudges, child-custody rights and hints imparted by Jitty, a ghost who appears first as Rachael Ray, then as Emeril, then as Paula Deen, and lastly as Aunt Jemima. Furthermore, the detecting gals’ menfolk want them to stop their snooping. And this time Tinkie will have her very own near-death experience before dessert is served.
So-so, with the greatest originality expended on the travails of Sarah Booth’s lovelorn hound.