Saturday, September 21, 2013

Review: Banana Split by Josi S. Kilpack

Title: Banana Split
Author: Josi S. Kilpack
Series: A Culinary Mystery, #7
Published: February 2012, Shadow Mountain
Format: Paperback, 372 pages
Source: Personal copy

Welcome to Paradise!
We hope you enjoy your stay her in Hawai'i. If you've never visited the islands before, treat yourself to a delicious slice of grilled pineapple, take a walk along the beach or sample the tasty cuisine offered at one of our famous luaus. And you simply must go snorkeling in the waters around Kaua'i. There is a reason why we call it the Island of Discovery - you never know what you might find!

Sadie Hoffmiller has survived eighteen months of nonstop adventures filled with murder, deceit, and danger. She could really use some rest—and maybe even some time to heal—relaxing in the tropical paradise of Kaua'i. However, palm trees and sunshine are not as effective a medication as Sadie had hoped. And when she finds herself entangled—literally—with a dead body, she is forced to face the compounding fears and anxieties that are making her life so difficult to live.

Her determination to stay out of danger and to focus on overcoming her anxieties soon takes a backseat when she meets eleven-year-old Charlie, the son of the woman whose body she discovered near Anahola Beach. Charlies has some questions of his own about what happened to his mother, and he is convinced that only Sadie can help him. If only Sadie were as confident in her abilities as Charlie is.

With the help of her best friend and a local social worker, Sadie dives into another mystery with the hope that, at the end, she'll be able to find the peace and closure that has eluded her.

My thoughts: This is the 7th book in Josi S. Kilpack's Culinary Mystery series starring Sadie Hoffmiller and I forgot how fun these books are. It's been a while since I've read a book in this series, but luckily I was able to jump right in and pick up where things were left off after the previous book, Pumpkin Roll.

Sadie is taking a much earned break in Hawaii. She's been suffering from panic attacks since her last case and is just coming up to the end of her long vacation when she literally gets tangled up with a dead body in the water. That definitely does nothing to keep the panic attacks at bay and soon she finds herself back on the case, trying to figure out who the woman was and why she was murdered. At first, she tried really hard to stay away from the case, but having the victim's eleven-year-old son visiting her and learning more about the woman herself makes her realize there's more to the story than what appears.

Oh, how I have missed visiting with Sadie! She seems to find herself in some interesting predicaments and I love how she used baking/cooking to help calm her nerves. Being that she's in Hawaii, most of the recipes included deal with island foods and some sound really good - Island Teriyaki Chicken, Sadie's Sassy Grilled Pineapple and the Aloha Cookies. I think I foresee some baking in my future!

I'm anxious to continue on with this series to see if Sadie gets her mojo back when it comes to solving these crimes and if she ever gets over her panic attacks. While she finally got into the swing of things with this case, it did take her a while and she was definitely more cautious than that Sadie I remember from earlier books.

Books in this series:
  1. Lemon Tart                              7.  Banana Split
  2. English Trifle                           8.  Tres Leches Cupcakes
  3. Devil's Food Cake                   9.  Baked Alaska
  4. Key Lime Pie                          10.  Rocky Road
  5. Blackberry Crumble
  6. Pumpkin Roll


  1. Reading the list of books in this series appeals to my inner sweet tooth! I'm glad you're enjoying it so much.

    1. Yes, the titles do tend to make me hungry!

  2. I really like culinary mysteries. I don't know how I missed this series. I'm putting it on my never ending to be read list

    1. Don't we all have a never-ending to-be-read list??? I don't think I will ever be caught up!


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