Cover Image: Murder Can Frost Your Doughnut

Murder Can Frost Your Doughnut

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Princess Fuzzypants here:  Normally I like the books by this author.  Her combination of the paranormal, mystery and humour is highly appealing. But if there is one thing that frosts my doughnuts, it is a heroine who does some colossally dumb things whilst trying to convince herself and her friends and family (which in this case includes two cops who are wooing for her favours) that she is being careful.

She parks her trailer in a private area where there are woods around and no cell coverage and she goes out and intentionally puts herself in harms way.  There were times when. I wanted to scream.  I stuck with the book, which did have its moments including an exciting finish.  I am going to have to consider long and hard whether this is the final book of this series I will be reading.

Three purrs and one paw up.
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This is a fun series and this book is no exception. The main protagonist Celeste Cabot and her family and friends are highly entertaining. The mystery is interesting with plenty of twists and turns to keep you glue to the pages. Looking forward to more of this series. 

All thoughts and opinions are my own, and in no way have I been influenced by anyone.
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This series is a good mix of cozy mystery and paranormal, always entertaining and riveting.
I was happy to catch up with the characters, as likeable as usual, and had a lot of fun in reading this story.
The mystery is complex, full of twists, and the solution surprised me.
Recommended.
Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine
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Murder Can Frost Your Doughnut:  A Haunted Craft Mystery
By Rose Pressey
Kensington
October 2021
 
Review by Cynthia Chow
 
Celeste Cabot has built a career for herself selling her artwork out of a trailer she uses to travel to craft fairs from North Carolina to Tennessee.  Her second career is attempting to corral in her brothers and father, who along with her mother have arrived early for a visit.  Celeste and her family are in the mountains of Eastern Tennessee to attend the Sevier County Fair, which along with fried butter and fried candy bars is renowned for hosting a celebrity impersonator contest.  Johnny Cashes, Dolly Partons, Loretta Lynns, and many, many Elvis impersonators roam the fair, but it’s one suspicious-acting jumpsuit-wearing one and another very dead Elvis who really capture Celeste’s attention.  Having recently discovered a talent for ghosts appearing after she unconsciously paints them into her artwork, Celeste shouldn’t have been too surprised at the sight of a spectral pompadoured and bedazzled impersonator after painting a portrait of the King.
 
Despite shots having rung out before Celeste stumbled over his body that was strangled by a wire, Donald Moran refuses at first to believe that he was murdered.  Once he admits to what the evidence indicates though, he continues to be less than helpful with his inability to remember any details about his death.  Able to provide more practical skills are Detectives Caleb Ward and Pierce Meyer, with one being Celeste’s ex-boyfriend and the other being Celeste’s future-maybe.  When the two aren’t jealously chest-thumping over past and present rivalries, they are warning Celeste away from their investigation.  Between attempting to keep her brothers out of trouble and sorting out the killer Elvis from the suspect Elvises, Celeste will barely have time to figure out how to finally send her own haunting crooner off into the light.
 
This fourth in this very light-hearted series entertains readers with the antics of Celeste and her exuberant family.  The descriptions of the fair and her art are elaborate and welcoming, and both truly paint an image of a place readers want to visit. Celeste is as much frustrated and exasperated with her romantic suitors as she is intrigued, which is why they are useful more as investigative tools who are slowly accepting her paranormal gifts.  Adorable, floppy-eared Chihuahua Vincent Van Gogh continues to be Celeste’s constant companion as she hurtles herself into adventure and impulsive interrogations.  The ghosts of her painted portraits may be limited in their capacity to help investigate their deaths, but they more than make up with that with their intrusive but hilarious observations.  This fun mix of spirits, southern fair foods, and eccentric characters are the perfect read for Halloween or any time of the year.
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This is the 4th installment in the Haunted Craft Mystery series.  Celeste Cabot is at the County Fair to sell her paintings and one the first day her family is there along with her best friend Sammie.  Celeste senses something off when she spots an Elvis impersonator acting strangely near the strange and then when she is taking her dog Van (Van Gogh) back to her pink Shasta trailer when she spots an Elvis impersonator at another trailer walking away and acting oddly so she goes to check it out and she finds another Elvis impersonator dead in that trailer so she rushes back to the fairgrounds and calls the police.  Detective Pierce and Caleb both arrive on the scene and once again are competitive for Celeste’s attentions.  Pierce is also working on a high profile art theft case and asks Celeste not to get involved as does her family.  Celeste decides to stay at her trailer on the fairgrounds to sell her pictures and she paints an Elvis picture which turns out to be the victim Donald whose ghost appears to her and wants her to solve his murder as he believes he died in a car accident.  This was a good solid cozy and although she took some chances tracking clues down she was not super crazy.  Loved how her Dad was involved in this one.  Looking forward to the next installment and hopefully she can pick a guy as I am not fond of love triangles that go on for a long time.
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Murder Can Frost Your Doughnut is the fourth installment in the A Haunted Craft Fair Mystery series featuring painter Celeste Cabot and her chihuahua Van (short for Van Gogh).  Celeste has arrived at the Sevier County Fair and is looking forward to selling her paintings in between enjoying the rides, food and celebrity impersonators.

Walking back to her trailer on night one, Celeste sees someone sneaking out of a neighboring trailer and when she goes over to take a peek finds a dead Elvis on the floor clutching a doughnut.  Despite the warnings of the two detectives (and her romantic interests) Caleb and Pierce, Celeste shimmies her way into the heart of the investigation and soon finds the killer's spotlight on her.

A fun way to spend an afternoon but so many things about this series leave me confused.  Most crafters and fair carnies head out out on the road for the Summer season.  Yet it seems that Celeste is always within minutes of her home, her parents, brothers and best friend show up randomly and Celeste takes meals at her Aunt's diner.  
Plus, could Celeste be any more careless?  If you are being stalked by a killer wouldn't you smarten up and stop marching all around the fairgrounds in the pitch dark or perhaps leave your trailer and spend a night at home?
This addition wasn't as enjoyable for me as I didn't think that the ghost Donald did much to contribute to the investigation and wasn't as interactive as the past ghosts that Celeste has painted.

I received an advanced copy of Murder Can Frost Your Doughnut from NetGalley via Kensington Publishing.  While not required to write a review I am happy to offer my honest opinion.
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I'm 100% hooked on this series , can't enough of the main character and her cute and adorable Chihuahua. Every time I pick up one of these books all I can do is just read and laugh at the craziness that happens.
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What a fun, exciting story! I enjoyed the characters and the story line. The story flowed nicely and it had me reading until the end in a day! I highly recommend this book!

Thank you for letting me review this book
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Murder Can Frost Your Doughnut by Rose Pressey is the 4th book in the Haunted Craft Fair Mysteries, and another fun addition. Celeste Cabot is an artist from Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Celeste travels in a remodeled Shasta Trailer with her Chihuahua, Van Gogh, so can travel to craft fairs and sell her paintings. Unfortunately after arriving at the craft fair Celeste and Van find a body, an Elvis impersonator with a doughnut in his had, so the sluething begins.  Celeste also has psychic abilities in her paintings. I loved this series, and I can't wait for the next book in the series. I found this book to be a quick read, with a well developed plot and characters. If you love cozy mysteries with a little paranormal, I strongly recommend this book/series. 
I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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Celeste Cabot returns in a craft fair taking place at a fair - likely a state fair as it has rides, plenty of food options along with an impersonator competition and entertainment.
Celeste’s family arrives early. One this first night Celeste finds an Elvis impersonator dead. She thinks maybe the killer saw her so she is determined to investigate.
What follows is stubbornness, silliness and a complete disregard for safety - her own.
I liked Celeste in the first book and her dog Van or Vincent Van Gogh. Her paintings sound lovely and very interesting with their hidden messages. I liked Caleb. 

By the fourth book, I would have hoped I would be further pulled into the series. That is not the case, Celeste becomes harder for me to like with each passing book. She is one of those heroine stories that is almost too stupid to live.

Don’t get me started on the love triangle. I don’t actually think it exists. The only man she has dated is Caleb. Pierce may cause her heart to speed up but for four books nothing has happened with him.

Donald, the ghost wasn’t really that helpful. He didn’t remember anything until Celeste has solved the case.

At the end of the day, I liked it okay. I was skim read most the middle. I’m not sure how I feel about the author twisting things so the main character solves all the dilemmas facing the police. Caleb and Pierce are portrayed as intelligent men but they rarely show up except to either provide a safety net for Celeste or to cuff the bad guys after Celeste has found them. 

I guess we’ll have to see if I can be tempted to give this series one more try when the next book comes.
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Elvis here, Elvis there...dang, he's all over the fair! When Celeste arrives at the Sevier County Fair in her sweet little pink trailer, ready to sell her paintings, solving another murder with the help of a ghost isn't part of her plans. But it should be - after all every time she arrives at a fair a killing is soon to occur. This time the dead man's ghost is an Elvis impersonator and together with her parents, brothers and Van the Chihuahua investigating the killer won't stay at large for long.
Celeste sees ghosts in her paintings, it's her strange talent and I love it. As for her family, well her brothers and father each need a keeper 24/7 as they tend to get into trouble as naturally as they breathe. Add her BFF Sammie and a romance involving not one but two guys (who will she pick?) and you have a mystery that will entertain to the last sentence. It has something for every reader - a solid puzzle, clues galore, some red herrings and plenty of Elvis impersonators to confuse things. I found it to be the perfect reading escape I needed.
My thanks to the publisher Kensington and to NetGalley for giving me an advance copy in exchange for my honest review.
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I have been a big fan of cozy mysteries since high school, and I always love discovering new series of them. Murder Can Frost Your Doughnut has a lot in common with many of my favorite cozy mysteries: an amateur detective, a small town setting, a love triangle. However, the paranormal element of this series set it apart from many of the others I read.

Celeste Cabot is a psychic painter. In fact, her paintings give her clues that lead her to solving the murder in Murder Can Frost Your Doughnut. Her powers also mean that she can see the ghost of the murder victim, which made this investigation especially interesting. My immediate thought was to ask why Donald couldn’t just tell Celeste who killed him, but Pressey does address that. "'Hey, I’m trying,' Donald said, forgetting Caleb couldn’t hear him. 'You try recalling the details of your own murder.'” While this isn’t necessarily the most convincing explanation, I was glad to see that my question was anticipated and addressed. I enjoyed getting to “know” the murder victim in the story as that doesn’t usually happen in the murder mysteries I’ve read.

Like many other cozy mystery series, there is a romantic plotline. Two people: Caleb and Pierce are both interested in Celeste romantically. As they are both detectives, Celeste calls them throughout the story when she finds a clue or finds herself in danger. I wanted to find myself invested in this story, but there wasn’t enough development in Caleb or Pierce’s characters for me to feel attached to either one of them. It is possible that I would feel differently if I’d read the other books in the series.

In many of the cozy mysteries I’ve read, there isn’t really a sense of danger that threads through the entire story. The amateur detective tends to find themselves in a scary situation with the murderer as they solve the case, but that tends to be the extent of moments like that. Celeste finds herself confronting the murderer at serveral points throughout the book. She finds herself in a car chase and finds herself lured to a fun house under false pretenses. She also finds indications that the murderer has been hanging around her trailer. These moments made me feel a sense of urgency that I enjoyed.

There are several moments of vivid description that really set the scene for the craft fair where Murder Can Frost Your Doughnut takes place. The book opens with a description that pulls the reader into Celeste’s world. "The last rays of sunset faded and the sky turned a deep navy blue as evening arrived at the Servier County Fair. A late summer breeze ruffled the leaves of nearby oak trees. Lights dazzled on the Ferris wheel and carousel, waiting for the nighttime riders." This description made me want to be at the fair with Celeste and her family and friends.

One of my favorite elements of cozy mysteries are recipes and discussion of food. This one does have a few recipes and plenty of discussion around food. However, I had a difficult time with the amount of food shaming I felt throughout the story. Celeste refers to a “weak moment” when she orders a deep fried Oreo and references that her mother calls a concession booth “the sugar coma stand.” It is so important that moral value not be assigned to food, and there was too much of that going on here for my liking.

I don’t think I’ll be reading the other Haunted Craft Fair mysteries, but I found Murder Can Frost Your Donut compelling enough.
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Fun read which will leave you craving a donut and swearing you will not read another book until you have burned off those calories.  Characters you can relate too and a well plotted story which will keep the reader wanting the next installment of the series.
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I read the first book in this series but missed the following two, thankfully it's a standalone and any details I might have missed or forgotten were quickly filled in so I don't think I missed too much. (I'll definitely be going back to read them though.) 
As much as I enjoy them I realized I don't read all that many mysteries, cozy or otherwise. But especially cozy; for reasons I cannot think of. Rose Pressey has really made me want to spend more time reading them. There's something to be said about a cozy mystery, this one itself is simple and charming, perfect for a quiet afternoon in. It's a light, fun read with loveable characters, a great mystery and the best kind of suspense.
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Hey who don't live Elvis, donuts, and rose pressy. I haven't read the others in this series, but have read many of this authors books,so it can be read as a stand alone. Just be prepared to want the first few as well.
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A little too simplistic with characters who aren't developed enough for me.  Her pseudo romane(s) aren't going anywhere. 
Thank you netgalley and the publisher for this arc
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I found this to be a fun read. I loved the addition of ghostly Elvis (even if it was an impersonator). The mysteries were interesting. I like the characters, especially the MC's family. A little does does go a long way with them however.

Thank you to the author, publisher and NetGalley for my eARC in exchange for an honest review.
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This is the fourth book in a series by Rose Pressey about artist Celeste Cabot who has special physic powers and travels to craft fairs to promote her work. In this instalment, she goes to Sevier County, eastern Tennessee to sell some paintings. Arriving with her pink and white trailer and Chihuahua, Van Gogh (Van for short) she finds the venue crawling with Elvis impersonators. She spots one Elvis sneaking out of a trailer without closing the door so decides to take a look and is shocked when she finds a dead body.

I thoroughly enjoyed Murder Can Frost Your Doughnut and found it very absorbing. Although I haven't yet read the first two books from Rose Pressey's Haunted Craft Fair Mystery series this did not tarnish my appreciation for this cozy tale as it was easy to read. I find protagonist Celeste to be a great character as she is personable, smart and independent, although a little prone to impulsiveness.

The mystery itself includes enough twists and variety to keep me guessing and turning the pages. A good bunch of people surround Celeste, and I especially like her BFF Sammie. The Travel Trailer Tips at the start of each chapter were a neat touch. This is a great, very high quality, fun read, and I intend to catch up with the other books in this pleasurable and amusing series. I can’t wait to see what’s next for Celeste. Very highly recommended.

I received a complimentary copy of this novel at my request from Kensington Books via NetGalley. This review is my own unbiased opinion.
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Another winner for this author. Murder Can Frost Your Doughnut is the fourth book in this series and they keep getting better.

In this book, we find Celeste and her trusted Chihuahua Van arriving at the Sevier County Fair in Tennessee to sell her paintings. 

Great storyline and well-crafted characters make this a must-read cozy mystery.
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While I miss the Haunted Vintage series, this one is quickly becoming a fave too. I don't know that I can see sustainability in finding dead bodies at every single fair she goes too, it'll be fun while it lasts. This is the 4th installment in the Haunted Craft Fair series, and having read them all, I feel as though it can easily be read as a standalone.

On a side note, are either of these men ever going to kiss Miss Celeste? 

Thank you Netgalley for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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