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by Leslie Meier , Lee Hollis & Barbara Ross

Pub Date: Jan. 24th, 2023
ISBN: 978-1-4967-4029-8
Publisher: Kensington

A trio of coffee-themed murders celebrates the wearing of the green.

Meier’s novella celebrates one of Ireland’s less-talked-about cultural treasures: step dancing. As reporter Lucy Stone interviews a teacher and four of her most talented students, readers are treated to a wealth of detail about the customs and costumes of Irish dance. It isn’t until someone swigs a fatal cup of whiskey-spiked brew that the focus shifts from choreography to coffee. Hollis, on the other hand, starts with coffee, as Randy, owner of Drinks Like A Fish, works on a java-based concoction he hopes will be his March special all the way to St. Patrick’s Day. It isn’t till Randy’s sister Hayley’s best friend, Liddy Crawford, snags Irish comic Jefferson O’Keefe for a March 17 gig at the Criterion that someone turns out to have a motive for murder. Like Hollis, Ross starts out with the good stuff. Best friends Julia Snowden and Zoey Butterfield plan to make a night of it with a fifth of Jameson and two quarts of whipping cream to supplement their favorite brew. When they find Julia’s mom and Capt. George McQuaig enjoying a cozy evening of their own in the house Julia lives in with her mom, Julia and Zoey are willing to share, and Capt. George pitches in with a ghost story. Soon the lights go out and neighbors start to arrive, each group seeking company during what looks like an extended power outage. They bring treats and opinions about who really killed Hugh O’Hara, the hero of Capt. George’s story. As the captain’s tale gets longer and shaggier, the Irish coffee flows and a good time is had by all, except maybe Hugh, who was murdered back in 1867.

Three good-natured tales are sure to make readers as mellow as their namesake drink.