Guess what’s wafting around the haunted house.
Young Bessie Osgood, who either jumped or was pushed from a window of the Peabody School years ago, has returned, so folks say, to haunt the place. So it’s not surprising when sisters Libby, who has premonition dreams, and Bernie, who wears cute shoes—arriving to cater the Longely Volunteer Fireman’s fundraiser planned by Mark Kane—feel drafts, hear a plea for help and, even worse, discover that one of the Halloween displays featuring a chainsaw actually holds the decapitated head of loathed Amethyst Applegate. Between icing cupcakes and slicing pumpkin bread, the sisters confer with their dad, a wheelchair-bound ex-police chief, their significant others, and ghost-hunting twins Konrad and Curtis. They learn that snooty Amethyst and Bessie were schoolmates; that a long-hidden journal proves Amethyst was wicked enough to be dismissed from school; and that she stole boyfriends and generally made everyone’s life miserable. While Libby and Bernie replenish their supply of cookies, pies and cider, the murderer resurfaces long enough to do in Ed Banks on his estate, where Amethyst had planned to celebrate a secret wedding. Determined to reconcile with an old beau, Bessie puts in yet another appearance, wrapping up this tale of school days and leaving the sisters free to return to their kitchen.
A lightweight mystery with lots of chitchat, food sampling and an impossibly arch coda. Like A Catered Valentine’s Day (2007, etc.), includes simple, high-carb recipes, not sampled.