Mint Chocolate Murder

An Ice Cream Shop Mystery

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Pub Date 26 Jul 2022 | Archive Date 09 Aug 2022
St. Martin's Press, St. Martin's Paperbacks

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Description

"Mint Chocolate Murder is a delightful confection of wonderful characters, a yummy setting, and an intriguing, twisty, and multi-layered mystery. It's the perfect book to curl up with on a lazy summer afternoon—preferably with your favorite flavor of ice cream close to hand." --Elizabeth Penney, Edgar-nominated author of the Cambridge Bookshop Series

Riley Rhodes returns in the second delicious cozy set in a New England ice cream shop, Meri Allen's Mint Chocolate Murder!

When Udderly Delightful Ice Cream shop manager Riley Rhodes is summoned to Penniman’s Moy Mull Castle, it’s the cherry on top of a successful summer season. The gothic pile built by an eccentric New England Gilded Age millionaire has been transformed into a premiere arts colony by Maud Monaco, a reclusive former supermodel. As part of Moy Mull’s Fall Arts Festival, Maud is throwing a fantasy ice cream social and hires Riley to whip up unique treats to celebrate the opening of an exhibit by Adam Blasco, a photographer as obnoxious as he is talented.

As Penniman fills up with Maud’s art-world friends arriving for the festival, gossip swirls around Blasco, who has a dark history of obsession with his models. Riley’s curiosity and instincts for sleuthing – she was a CIA librarian – are piqued, and she wonders at the hold the cold-hearted photographer has over the mistress of Moy Mull.

But when Adam is found dead behind the locked door of Moy Mull’s dungeon, Riley realizes there’s more than one suspect who’d wanted to put the malicious photographer on ice.

"Mint Chocolate Murder is a delightful confection of wonderful characters, a yummy setting, and an intriguing, twisty, and multi-layered mystery. It's the perfect book to curl up with on a lazy...


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ISBN 9781250267085
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Average rating from 96 members


Featured Reviews

I received this book for free for an honest review from netgalley #netgalley

I especially love this cozy and I can't wait to read more about the wonderful characters and amazing setting.

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Former CIA librarian and current manager of the Udderly Delightful Ice Cream shop, Riley Rhodes is thrilled to land a job supplying ice cream to an event at Moy Mull Castle hosted by former supermodel Maud Monaco. Moy Mull has an interesting history, as does Maud herself, including with Adam Blasco, the photographer who is highlighted at the event Maud is hosting. When Blasco is found dead, there are plenty of suspects, and Riley can’t help but do some behind the scenes investigating. She needs to be careful or her sleuthing will put her in very real danger.

“Mint Chocolate Murder” is the nicely done second book in Meri Allen's Ice Cream Shop cozy mystery series. While I like the Ice Cream Shop setting, what I really like about this book is the Moy Mull Castle setting – it is a good one and I really enjoyed reading about it – both the current day events and past events before Maud moved in. I like Riley as a character – even if the former CIA Librarian thing doesn’t ring quite true – I love her intrepidness in trying to solve the mystery. As for the mystery – it is a nice one with plenty of twists and turns, with plenty of suspects and a nicely done (if sad), side mystery. Speaking of suspects – my one complaint about this book is that there are far too many characters to keep track of and I was a bit confused about who owned what in town. Hopefully that will fall into place as the series continues.

“Mint Chocolate Murder” is a nicely done cozy mystery.

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Ice cream and a Scottish castle (in America). It's a mystery of a different flavor. A famous former model still making good money, a fiendish photographer with a slick persona; still making enemies, and a creative ice cream shop manager trying not to upset the police, but determined to find out what happened.

The model's major demo (not a butler at all), Prentiss, may be her best resource, or the killer. But my money is on someone else.

I liked that the policeman wasn't closely accessible. But not that the secretary was a loose cannon--and they supposedly didn't know. She must have spilled the beans to someone else in that much time.

The general setting of a story is important to me as well. I enjoyed picturing the green hills and occasional cow across from the ice cream store.

This was a fun mystery; a bit out of the usual trends lately, so refreshing. And I especially liked Prentiss.

There's just one question. Why doesn't the book mention "mint" or "mint chocolate"? (See title.)

4/5 Stars Fun; I loved the castle and cottages!

Thanks to St. Martin's Press and NetGalley for the preview of this ebook; the review is voluntary.

#MintChocolateMurder #MeriAllen #NetGalley
#StMartinsPress #CozyMystery
#CozyCulinaryMystery
#AmateurSleuthMysteries #RileyRhode
#IceCreamShopMysteriesBook2
#MysteryThriller

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A quirky, fast paced, exciting story that keeps you turning pages. It was great to not be able to predict who it was.

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Back to the Udderly Delightful Ice Cream Shop in Penniman, CT. This is the authors second cozy in this series. An art exhibit is taking place at the Moy Mull Castle located in Connecticut's colorful rolling hills as part of an Autumn Arts Festival. Riley, the Manager of Underlying is preparing some special ice cream treats for the Opening Night Exhibit. Opening night highlights the work of a famous photographer, Adam Black who has a tumultuous past with the Castle s owner, Maud.Adam is found dead after the first nights festivities, in the Castles locked door dungeon. Riley, again,uses her past CIA experiences to do some sleuthing.

This was a great locked door cozy mystery read.I immediately reconnect ed with Riley and also enjoyed seeing some of the returning characters. The location and the castle itself gave the book a nice ambiance. The castle itself held secrets as castles often do. I went back and forth on who I felt the murderer was and while I deducted correctly, the ending was still intense and expanded from what my thought had been. Very satisfying. I also enjoyed the side story regarding the 2 cats. And I am still craving some pumpkin spice ice cream which was a flavorite of many in the book. .....and yes there is a very tasty recipe for it!

Thank you to NetGalley, St Martin's Press an the author Meri Allen for the opportunity to read and review this book which publishes on 7/26/22

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What a delicious cozy mystery! Riley Rhodes, a former CIA librarian, channels her best Miss Marble as she sets off to solve a murder mystery. Currently managing in the Udderly Ice Cream Shop, she is hired to develop some unique ice cream desserts for a party at the local castle, home to the famous former supermodel Maud who is hosting an Arts Festival featuring an art showing for her former husband, Adam. Adam is a photographer who really thinks a lot of himself. However, Adam is found dead in the dungeon which was locked. Riley seems to have been everywhere, hearing this argument and partial conversations, witnessing suspects sneaking around, discovering thefts and searching for hidden tunnels. As a lover of Agatha Christie, she truly embraces being an amateur super sleuth.
Having a whole host of characters with plentiful motives and secrets galore, this made for a delightful read. It also seems as if everyone wants to know whodunit and has an opinion. Some red herrings and madcaps as well, similar to what you find in an Agatha Christie novel. To top it off, there is another mystery within a mystery. I enjoyed this yummy cozy mystery which was a quick read. As an added bonus was the recipe for pumpkin spice ice cream at the end. I look forward to reading more ice cream mysteries from this author.

Many thanks to #netgalley #mintchoclatemurder #meriallen #st.martinspress for the opportunity to read and review this book.

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Chocolate mint Murder
This is the first book I have read by author Meri Allan.
I enjoyed the light read of the book and enjoyed the main character Riley as she is asked to attend a function at Moy Mull Castle. The story is well written and characters are strong and well developed
I enjoyed the book and think I will look for more of these books in the future.

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Castles with rumors of a weeping ghost, locked door mysteries, ice cream, royalty, bees, and, oh, yeah, a murder. In the locked room. And that somehow just scratches the surface. There's also ice cream.

Riley Rhodes may be the manager of the Udderly Delightful Ice Cream Shop but she's also a former CIA librarian, one who did the occasional covert mission. I found her rather nervous and a bit impulsive to have had such training but, shrug, what do I know? Anyway, hired to create a Scottish inspired dessert featuring ice cream for an art show, she finds herself at Penniman's Moy Mull Castle when the pretentious, manipulative photographer appearing at the show is murdered. In a locked room, no less. The only known key was still tucked away in the cabinet it is stored in. Security cameras show no one entering the dungeon, er, conference room, other than the victim. Nor do old blue prints handed over to the police show any hidden rooms or passageways. Who killed Adam Blasco? Equally puzzling, how?

The whys seem to be numerous. His photographs are unsettling and he seems to treat everyone with scorn....unless he sees a way to use them. Riley's young friend Willow is seemingly targeted, which is upsetting to not just Riley but Willow's boyfriend Luca. Could Luca have killed Adam in a fit of jealousy? What evidence is found that puts him on the suspect list? Why does Adam's assistant Vye go missing when the body is found? What are Max and Bree up to? What happened to the missing photo called Dallas? Again, how? Could the castle, made from stones brought from Scotland, really be haunted? Is the Weeping Lady real or just a figment of imagination? And, can jovial, personable Prentiss be hiding a secret? Like, he killed Adam? What startling discovery is made about hostess Maud's brief marriage to Adam? And, oh, so much more. Seriously, the twists and turns had twists and turns. Multiple suspects, so many in fact that I had difficulty keeping who was who straight, and surprises at every turn.

Despite my initial confusion keeping the multiple characters straight, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Once we got past the initial background introductions, the pace was quick and I found it hard to put the book aside. Okay, who am I kidding? I stayed up way too late reading last night. Like Riley, I wanted to know "whodunit" and how. Locked room mysteries are a favorite of mystery readers and this one did not disappoint. And, oh, did I mention that there is a spoiled diva of a cat, Sprinkles, who gets her own side story? Lots to like as well as ponder. I'm betting you'll like this one but, well, don't stay up to late reading.

Thanks to #NetGalley and #StMartinsPress for giving me an all access pass to Moy Mull Castle. Having Riley as my guide was intense but fun.

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This was such a fun mystery! Merci Allen is a new author to me and I enjoyed this book! Loved the characters and the mystery along the way had me guessing! Hope there are more books in the series, can't wait to read more!

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Perfect cozy: food, a castle, attractive people and locked room mystery. Nice fun romp. I liked that this worked as a stand alone since this is the first one in the series that I read.

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This book was the second in the series and although I never read the first book, I did not have any trouble keeping up. There were a few references made to the previous book, but nothing that really seemed to matter. Having an ex FBI agent working in an ice cream shop was certainly a different approach to things. I have always loved castles, so to set the murder in one was interesting to me. There were lots of possible assailants and several red herrings to make the plot hard to figure out. If anything, my one complaint was that it had a slow beginning and seemed a touch too long, while reading on my KIndle. I have never read anything by this author before, so have nothing to compare it too. Thanks for the opportunity to read this.

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I feel I’ve been waiting forever for this second book in the “Ice Cream Shop Mysteries” by Meri Allen. Riley investigates the murder of a famous photographer, Adam, who is hired to take photos for his friend, Maud, for her newest cookbook. There are many people who would want Adam gone. I loved the castle setting and the mini mystery of Oona who was the wife of the builder of the castle. Ms. Allen writes the perfect cozy mystery. No obscene language, light on romance and a fun but not easy to figure out mystery. My only complaint is the time I have to wait until the next book in the series. One of my favorite series.

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More ice cream delights in the next installment of Rileys adventures!

When catering an art event at a notorious castle, Riley gets drawn into another murder mystery when the man of the hour, the photographer, turns up dead, she utilizes her sleuthing skills honed as a Librarian for the CIA to dig deeper before she become the next target.

I loved the return of Riley and the gang, but I wish there was more interaction with Rocky and Caroline. But otherwise was really good!

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Mint Chocolate Murder is the second in the Ice Cream Shop Mysteries, but works very well as a stand-alone. Riley, a former CIA librarian and sometime agent, if managing a gourmet ice cream shop for her friend, Caroline. Riley is excited to be invited to provide ice cream for a fancy artist event at the local castle. And the castle is an actual castle, built from a Scottish castle that was demolished and the pieces shipped to Connecticut to be rebuilt for an wealthy eccentric. A famous photographer is featured, but many of his pieces are disturbing and he is obnoxious. When a death occurs, Riley’s CIA background kicks in and she begins investigating.
An old, haunted castle, a pair of cats with strong personalities, and ice cream flavors that sound amazing, make this a fun read with an excellent mystery. Thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for the opportunity to read this ARC.

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Kindle Copy for Review from NetGalley and St. Martin's Press.

I received a free, advance copy of this book and this is my unbiased and voluntary review.

Riley is summoned to Penniman’s Moy Mull Castle which is designed in a gothic pile by an eccentric rich supermodel as an art colony. As part of the fall festivities there will be an exhibit by a well-known photographer with a fantasy ice cream social which Riley is hired to provide special treats.

Things quickly melt away when he is found dead. Rumors of his obsession with his subjects run rampant. Could the killer be one of his models or are there other people he pissed off?

A fast paced cozy to enjoy.

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Riley manages Udderly Delightful Ice Cream Shop. She gets the opportunity to cater her specialty ice cream treats for an event being held at Moy Mull Castle celebrating the opening of an art exhibit by Adam Blasco. As a former librarian for the CIA, she can’t help but put her former research and sleuthing skills to work when Adam is found dead behind a locked door. There are several suspects, twists and turns, and secrets revealed. Meri Allen is a new-to-me author and I enjoyed the storyline and trying to figure out whodunit.

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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A castle, secret passage, bees, thefts, murder and ice cream- what is there not to like about this cozy mystery. Likable characters and the murder of an unlikable character make this a cozy mystery to enjoy with your favorite cup of tea or maybe some ice cream. A great read for cozy mystery lovers everywhere.
#MintChocolateMurder#NetGalley

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After leaving the CIA, Riley Rhodes took a job in her hometown running her friend Caroline's ice cream shop, Udderly. This fall she has been asked to make a special ice cream dessert for former model and Princess, Maud Monaco as she is hosting an art festival. The star artist is murdered, his most famous piece is stolen and everybody is a suspect.
As former CIA, Riley is nosy, but doesn't want to step on the toes of the sheriff, who is Caroline's new beau. Plus, one of her employees is a suspect. She has to sneak around the estate and try to question people and find clues while trying to avoid law enforcement and, of course, the murderer.
This is a really fun read (with recipes!). Everybody has a secret and someone may be blackmailing one or more of the suspects. The victim was so unpleasant and caused so much harm to so many people that it is hard to develop any sympathy whatsoever for him. (Never an excuse for murder though!)
This was my first book by Meri Allen, but I will be looking for her other books. Thoroughly enjoyable!

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The second book in the Ice Cream Shop Mysteries, Mint Chocolate Murder, brings us back to the world of Riley Rhodes, former CIA librarian, current ice cream shop manager. I liked that this one is set outside of the shop/farm, at an artist's retreat, Moy Mull.
Readers get a delicious mix of ice cream flavours that they'll crave alongside Riley's persistence in looking into the murder of a photographer who was being feted with an exhibit at the resort. There's no shortage of suspicious characters to investigate, which works well until it starts to drag towards the end. At that point, readers have enough info for it to move towards the conclusion and it starts to feel like the story is meandering to delay the conclusion.
It's a good contemporary cozy mystery regardless, and will particularly appeal to those who like history mixed in with contemporary intrigued, as the haunted estate may have its own story to tell.

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Cozy mystery fans will find this book a treat! Unlike many mysteries I’ve read, you’re several chapters into the book before someone dies. This added suspense because you read along not only wondering who did it, but who’s going to die. Much of the story takes place in a castle, (fun setting), and the author does a nice job of setting the scene. Although I like fewer characters in a story, I thought the plot was believable and well thought out. I’ll be looking for more in the series. Thank you #NetGalley and #St Martins Press for the book! #MintChocolateMurder

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Plot: 4.6
Characters: 4.6
Writing Style: 5
Cover: 4
Enjoyment: 4.6

Thank you to St. Martin Press and NetGalley for the Advanced eARC of MINT CHOCOLATE MURDER. This is the perfect cozy mystery set in Scotland. I loved the premise of an Ice Cream Shop in Scotland. I loved the references to Agatha Christie novels.

Riley Rhodes owns Udderly Delightful, an Ice Cream Shop, and she is catering for an event at Moy Mull Castle. Before her current job, she was a librarian at the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency) in the USA. It was interesting that even though she escaped from the small town in Connecticut, which resembled an English village, she lives in a village in Scotland.

A former Model, Maud, who is now a widow owns the Castle. She is a Black woman who is six feet tall. She sounds like a delightful character and I liked her character. She hires Riley to put together an Ice Cream social as part of Moy Mull's Fall Arts Festival. There is also an opening of an exhibit by a malicious photographer Adam Blasco who is obsessed with models. When Adam's dead body is found in the castle's dungeon, Riley discovers that there are many suspects who wanted to kill Adam.

This is a new to me author and a new to me series. A novel set in the British Isles and delightful characters and ice cream sounds like a perfect combination for a summer cozy mystery.

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What could be a better combo - a dreary & rainy day, a cozy mystery featuring a former librarian who just happened to have worked for the CIA, a gorgeous but spooky castle, the murder of an unlikable photographer, a delicious ice cream shop that will make you want a cone (trust me) and two adorable felines - well, one adorable cat and one car who is slightly homicidal! Mix that together with greed, broken promises and anger and you have a perfect cozy mystery!

Riley Rhodes, former CIA librarian and now ice cream shop manager & flavor developer, is a relatable and slightly mysterious character. At the CIA, Riley also worked as an "asset" and has a unique skill set. There were "red herrings" all over and I fell for each one! The felines have such different personalities but you'll love them both. The mystery was fast-paced and I enjoyed it!

I had not read the first book, but had no trouble keeping up with this book. Settle in for a cozy mystery you'll love! I'm hoping the next book comes out soon!

I received an ARC from NetGalley and the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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Utter delight to read this action packed fun ad. Great characters. Good solid story plot. A fun enjoyable cozy to curl up with! Thanks #netgalley and #stmartinspress for the eARC in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are mine.

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"Mint Chocolate Murder" is the second book in the Ice Cream Shop Mysteries series, but easily reads as a stand-alone book. Everyone is excited when Udderly Delightful Ice Cream, the shop run by Riley Rhodes, a former librarian for the CIA, is asked to provide ice cream desserts at a fine arts event at the Moy Mull Castle in town. Former supermodel, Maud Monaco, the owner of Moy Mull Castel, asks Riley to provide not only desserts for the festival, but to also create some Scottish-themed ice cream desserts for the opening of a photography exhibit that she is hosting at the castle by renowned photographer, Adam Blasco. When Adam, who is allergic to bees, is found dead in the locked dungeon of the castle from an apparent bee-sting, Riley sets about searching for answers on who might have wanted Adam dead, and discovers that Adam was well-known for his questionable behavior, in addition to his photography skills, and that there is no shortage of people who might want to see him dead.

Overall, "Mint Chocolate Murder" was a fun, and fast-paced read, and I would definately be interested in reading any future books in this series. There was a good number of twists and turns, and just when you thought you might have an idea who did it, something else came up that had you questioning your guess again! Given the theme of ice cream, this book is a perfect summer read!

Thanks to NetGalley and St Martin's Press/St Martin's Paperbacks for providing me with an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest re3view. "Mint Chocolate Murder" is scheduled to be released on 7/26/22.

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t’s such a delight to be back with Riley, the Udderly Delightful crew and two cats with tons of personality. Allen has written one humdinger of a head scratching mystery with plenty of twists and turns that will leave you guessing till the end. And let me just say don’t read this book if you’re even a little bit hungry because all of the ice cream flavor descriptions will have a craving a gallon or two to dig into. YUM! I very much enjoy this series and can’t wait to see where it goes from here. This is the second in the Ice Cream Shop Mysteries series, so be sure to check out The Rocky Road to Ruin and get caught up.

I received this eARC thanks to NetGalley and St Martin’s Press in exchange for an honest review

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For the most part, I enjoyed this book. It's well-written, the pace is good. I figured out who the murderer was early on, but there were enough red herrings to make me doubt myself here and there. The primary thing that bugged me was Riley's murder solving technique. Every theory she had panned out. She never guessed wrong. I realize that she used to be CIA, but no one's instincts are 100%. Even a couple of times where it seemed like she might be reaching a bit... it's okay! She's right. But if you can overlook a couple of things that are just too perfect, the book is a good read. The characters were interesting, the pace is good, the setting vivid and real--plus, there's a cat that may or may not be evil. What's not to love?

I found myself unreasonably annoyed at the title (and by extension, the cover). The main character manages an ice cream shop--great! That was one of the things that drew me in. But the flavor that is mentioned like every three pages? Pumpkin Spice. Not mint chocolate. It's weirdly confusing.

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A huge thank to St Martin's Press for the invite to read Mint Chocolate Murder via NetGallery!

Well paced, action packed adventure, or should I say whodunit story! It really keeps you in the dark til the end and was not what I might of expected. I've not read Meri Allen's work before but I will be now.

I look forward to reading more from this series...especially to see if Sprinkles behaves ;)

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Chocolate Mint Murder is the first book I have read by author Meri Allen. The setting for this cozy mystery worked well. Instead of a creepy English/Scottish castle, the setting is a not-so-creepy Scottish castle rebuilt in a small town outside of Boston. This setting providing the locked room mystery. And this setting helped to feed the two additional mysteries of who committed the murder and who has been stealing valuable items from the castle.

Although the castle is a wonderful character, as is the ice cream shop to a lesser degree, the real characters work together especially well in solving these mysteries. Mostly, though, it is ice cream shop manager, Riley, who solves the murder, the locked room mystery, and the thefts. However, Riley has a number of interesting secondary characters to feed her information. The two cats have starring roles, as well. Thankfully, I have dogs, since after meeting Sprinkles, I don't believe I have the energy for a diva cat like sprinkles.

There were many red herrings, which made this mystery especially compelling. I solved a couple of the mysteries pretty easily, but the thefts took a bit longer. It did take me a while to really get into this book, but once the mystery began, I had a difficult time putting down Allen's novel. I want to thank the author and publisher for providing this ARC for me to read and review. These comments are my honest opinions. Thank you also to NetGalley for introducing me to another wonderful author, whose books I will want to read.

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Mint Chocolate Murder is the second wonderful book in the Ice Cream Shop Mysteries by Meri Allen. This book has everything I like about cozy mysteries. The characters are friendly, likable and interesting. The mystery was intriguing and kept me guessing, although my suspicion was correct. Riley Rhodes was a former CIA librarian but now manages Udderly Delightful Ice Cream Shop. The people who work there definitely add to the story. Riley is asked to provide unique flavors of ice cream for an Ice Cream Social at Moy Mull, the local castle owned by Maud Monaco. Maud has an interesting past. She is hosting famous photographer Adam Blasco's exhibit. Adam has some secrets plus he isn't well-liked. He misses the opening of his exhibition and is found dead. In the dungeon of the castle in a locked room. With Riley's background with the CIA, she is very curious about Adam's death and wants to keep her friend Willow's boyfriend Luca from going to jail for Adam's murder. I liked that Riley's best friend Caroline is dating Detective Jack Voelker.. There is quite a bit going on in the story besides the murder which kept it interesting and the book was hard to put down.! #NetGalley #MintChocolateMurder #StMartinsPress

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** spoiler alert ** [Warning: Some spoilers, though not the killer's identity] Theft, murder, bees, a castle, ice cream, fashion models, and more. I like this book overall, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading it. The one issue for me is that I'm never made quite clear on what exactly the victim, Adam, did to incite the suicide that eventually leads to Adam's murder. Yes, he's a jerk and has a history of toying with and degrading women. But it's assumed he caused this woman's suicide? I don't know. I just feel like it's well plotted and all hangs together so nicely, EXCEPT for the fact that the actions that led to his murder are never actually revealed. The lack of this info makes the story stand on somewhat shaky ground.

Review copy provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

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I first want to thank St. Martins for allowing me to read this book ahead of its release.

I absolutely love cozy mysteries set in a castle! It is such a fun idea and I felt like I was in Moy Mull with Riley! Meri Allen did a fantastic job of walking us through the different rooms, very descriptive!

Another high point was the cats, Sprinkles and Rocky! They are so adorable and animals in cozies are always a highlight for me.

The only downside of the book for me was I felt like there was more mystery vs. cozy feel. I wish we got to spend more time in the ice cream shop. But I did enjoy being at the castle more, so I wasn't too upset. If you like your cozy mysteries to be about 65 mystery-45 cozy this will be perfect!

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This exciting, fast-paced, cozy mystery is so much fun to read! I enjoyed the castle setting and all the characters, and the art show theme. I'll be looking for more work by Meri Allen and the next installment in the Ice Cream Shop cozy series. I'm not sure where the title came from, though - I did not see Mint Chocolate mentioned in the story.

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I absolutely LOVED this cozy. Mint Chocolate Murder brings us back to Riley Rhodes, ice cream maker and purveyor extraordinaire and CASUAL FORMER CIA AGENT. WHO ALSO NEEDS NO MAN. I love Riley so, so much, and Sprinkles! This book brings us to the local castle, where Riley will be catering a photography event. However, when the sleazy photographer turns up dead, everyone is a suspect. The scottish stuff? loved it. The friends? love them. The ice cream? please send it to me. This is the perfect fast-paced cozy with a heroine who comes off as smart, independent and content with her life. Definitely pick it up.

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I love this series from Meri Allen! Not only do I love cozy mysteries but ice cream is one of my favorite treats! So really, it's no surprise that I feel like this is the perfect series for me! And for those who enjoy a charming series!

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What a great Cozy Mystery! Loved the characters, the plot, and of course the description of all the delicious ice cream!!
When Adam, the photographer for an even Riley is helping to cater with her ice cream, is found supposedly fatally stung by a bee. But things just don't add up for Riley. There are a few people that would have liked to see something happen to Adam, and lots of motives. Can she figure out the real suspect before its too late?
Great story, thoroughly enjoyed it. Looking forward to another in the series.
I received an advance copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

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I found this book to be a great addition to the series. I read the first book Rocky Road to Ruin, and couldn't wait to read this book. A note to readers: reading this book will definitely make you crave ice cream. The story, plot, and characters made this book a fun read . The book also includes recipes for readers to try as well similar to the first book. While this book can be read as a stand-alone, I also recommend that you check out the first book in the series as well.

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You'll enjoy reading this story and wishing to sample all the ice creams. The characters will intrigue you and the clues will keep you guessing.

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When a former CIA librarian who now manages an ice cream shop finds a body after a festival at a haunted castle, the intrigue deepens. There's plenty of suspects and the local police has their hands full. Riley uses her skills and likability to investigate. I enjoyed this cozy suspenseful mystery.

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I did not read the description for this before I requested it on NetGalley, or before I started to read it, beyond finding out that it was the second in a series, following The Rocky Road to Ruin (which I teased on Friday). I'm opting to not include the usual Amazon Description because I discovered that I kind of liked not knowing ahead of time who the victim was going to be. I wasn't surprised but, really, it could have gone in a number of ways and I kept thinking to myself "ooooh maybe it's going to be her/him/whomever." If you really want that bit spoiled, go ahead and read the description or go to Amazon ... but I'm not going to be the one to spill the beans.

This story still takes place in Riley's hometown of Penniman, Connecticut, but we see very little of the ice cream shop and farmstead and spend most of our time at Moy Mull -- the castle-turned-artist colony. It's a reproduction Scottish castle with all sorts of history and outbuildings and a dungeon-turned-conference room and I have loved reading about all of it (especially the potential hauntings). It does kind of make me sad because I'm at 60% right now and we have yet to see two of the side characters from Rocky Road who had been staying there, but there's enough going on that I'm only kind of sad -- not completely devastated. Besides, there's still 40% left for them to suddenly appear and there's still a little matter of who killed ....... someone.

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This is the second book in this mystery series. But this book can be read as a standalone. This was a fun mystery and I enjoyed the cast of characters.

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This is a great cozy mystery. I've had hard days at work recently, so wanted easy read. This is the second I've read recently and would definitely recommend it to a friend for a quick/easy read.

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An Ice Cream Shop Mystery #2

Riley Rhodes returns in the second delicious cozy set in a New England ice cream shop, Meri Allen’s Mint Chocolate Murder!

We are back in New England with Riley Rhodes of Udderly Delightful Ice Cream Shop, which she manages for her best friend.

Riley is surprised to be asked out to Peeniman’s Moy Mull Castle. The famous Maud Monaco, former supermodel, and wife of a very rich man. She has turned the castle and the extensive grounds into an art colony and she is hosting an art show and an ice cream social. Bitsy will be catering but Riley will provide the luscious fall flavors of ice cream she has dreamed up. And they sound dreamy!

The featured artist is photographer Adam Blasco. He has a rather dark reputation and sounds like a creep, so when he is found dead in a locked room, Riley ( a former CIA Librarian), figures out that more than one person had an ax to grind with Blasco and motives abound!

The biggest mystery is the locked room. How did someone kill him and get out without unlocking the door? Was it the famous Weeping Ghost? Or did this Scottish castle come with a secret as well as a ghost?

The food descriptions had my mouth watering! A book series about ice cream? Yes, please! I can’t wait for the next one.

NetGalley/ July 26, 2022, St. Martin’s Press

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Book 2 of a series but still can be read as a stand alone.
Too many series feel the need of doing a recap of the previous books and take 3-5 chapters to do so. In this book a few comments are a nod to the previous story without delving into it.

It was enjoyable, light and a good mystery. I highly recommend this cozy mystery series!

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This is the second book in the series and can be read as a standalone, I will be going back to read the first one as I would like to see how Riley ended up back home running an ice cream store.

Mint Chocolate Murder was a really fast-paced mystery, set in a super cute small town. Riley is catering a gig with some specialty ice creams when someone is found murdered... The guy Adam, was kind of a skeevy tool who definitely gives off some bad vibes so there was no end of people who would have wanted him dead. Riley is definitely curious by nature and ends up in the right place at the right time to get some juicy tidbits that fuel her desire to figure out what's going on... I really like that whenever she finds something new she has no problem sharing it with the police. Even if he is a little bit hard to get a hold of at times. The mystery part was really great, every time a new piece of evidence was revealed I changed my mind about who the killer was...
I can't wait to see what Riley and her friends will be getting into next!

There is also a kitty cat named Sprinkles, a diva who definitely stole the show... I can't wait to see more of her and Rocky...

Also if you like pumpkin spice ice cream there is a recipe at the end!

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I received an advance copy via NetGalley.

I hadn't read the first book in this cozy mystery series, but I had no trouble slipping into this cozy New England setting with ice cream galore and a man found dead in a locked room. Lead character Riley is a former CIA librarian who comes across as smart, savvy, and compassionate. When she's hired to cater ice cream for a nearby art exhibit opening at an imported Scottish castle, she finds a lot of drama among the guests, and soon, the dead guy--the man whose art was on exhibition. He was a creep, and a lot of people have reason to want him dead.

What sets this apart from other recent cozies I've read is that there are layers here. There's more going on that the dead dude. The ending had several twists I didn't see coming, and I loved that. I'm definitely curious about reading more from this author!

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I have voluntarily read and reviewed a copy of this title given to me via NetGalley. I really enjoyed this book. It was really well written and it just had you trying to solve the mystery. I look forward to seeing what’s next from this author.

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The first thing you will notice when you start to read this book is that the author does a phenomenal job of describing every detail. I found that by her doing so I felt like I was watching a movie. A movie filled with friends, ice cream, bees, castles, festivals, and of course - MURDER!
I found the book a tad bit hard to get into but I kept at it and was sucked right in. If after you start to read this book you are also finding it hard to track characters (there are many) please stick with it. Remember good things happen to those who wait (or in this case a good book happens when you get over the hump ;) )

Thank you to St. Martin’s Press and NetGalley for this advanced copy to read. This is my honest review.

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I received this ARC via Netgalley and St. Martin’s Press, in return for an honest review. While the second book in this series, it is easily read as a standalone. Riley Rhodes, former Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) librarian, now runs an ice cream shop and is invited to cater a special art exhibit at local castle, Moy Mull. With quite a few resident and visiting personalities, it’s no wonder when tempers flare over old and new encounters. Is the death in the dungeon natural or unnatural causes? Riley puts her expertise to work in unraveling all the mysteries. Be warned, this book will leave you craving ice cream!

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Mint Chocolate Murder is the second in this wonderful New England ice cream shop series by Meri Allen. In this one, Riley is now running Udderly Delightful Ice Cream shop when she stumbles upon a murder at the nearby Moy Mull Castle during an event. The New England setting and the Castle provided an excellent backdrop for the murder and introduced us to more of the characters in Penniman. The mystery itself was great and provided lots of red herrings along the way!! This is another great cozy mystery to add to your list!

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This is a charming second in series and a perfect cozy escape for summer. Thank you to the publisher and to NetGalley. My review opinion is my own.

At the Udderly Delightful Ice Cream Shop in Penniman, CT business is good. Riley is making treats for a art exhibit at a local castle. Part of the exhibit is a local photographer who does not get along with the owner of the castle. The owner of the castle is found dead in the Castles dungeon. Riley and friends step up to investigate as Riley has proven to be a smart savvy problem solver and has a background in the CIA. ,

The receipes for ice cream are divine, the castle is a worthy setting and majestic throughout the story. I like the smart protagnist and the supporting charcters. A enjoyable read and I look forward to the next in series.

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This book was a blast! After reading the description and knowing a lot of hoity-toity character types would be in the book, I'll admit I was a little leery about picking this up. BUT IT WAS AWESOME! Meri Allen brought all the characters to life, and the murder mystery was so gripping. I found myself unable to put it down!

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Through the narrator, the author paints such a vivid picture that you truly feel like you’re walking in Riley’s footsteps.

Riley is the manager of Udderly Delightful Ice Cream Shop in Penniman, CT. As part of the opening night of an art exhibit, scheduled to be held in a local castle, Riley is busy prepping some delish ice cream treats for the event. The night seems to be going well just as a body is found. Riley’s CIA background clicks into gear as she works to unravel the truth.

This is the second book in the Ice Cream Shop mysteries and I loved every minute of the twists and turns the author takes you on. Book one was such a great introduction to Riley and the town, that I felt immediately connected with the cast of characters when I dove into book two. This is the perfect cost mystery to spend a weekend with!

📌 Pub Date: July 26, 2022

I was given a copy of this story to read; but thoughts and opinions are all my own. Thank you to Netgalley and St. Martin’s Press @stmartinspress for the chance to read this book!

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Mint Chocolate Murder is the second book in the Ice Cream Shop Mysteries by Meri Allen.
I absolutely LOVED the first book in the series, and was so EXCITED for this second book.

I love the setting of the Udderly Delightful Ice Cream Shop that is located in Connecticut.

There is an art exhibit at Moy Mull Castle. Riley is doing some wonderful ice cream treats for opening night. There is a great mystery here, and this is a fantastic locked door cozy mystery.

I LOVE locked room mysteries. The setting was fantastic and the mystery kept me guessing.
Absolutely loved this story and left me craving ice cream.

There is a recipe for Pumpkin Spice Ice Cream. I live in New England and we love pumpkin spice everything an I am excited to try this!

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What’s better than a cozy mystery about ice cream for summer? Add in a Scottish castle, a rich hostess & of course murder. I think I enjoyed this second book even better than the first. The fact that Riley used to work for the CIA is a fun addition & lends itself to a clever protagonist. This was a great mystery, lots of interesting suspects. I loved all the descriptions involving the castle & the history, I’m a sucker for when a mystery delves into the past & this one does an excellent job at that! This is a really promising new series, one I look forward to reading more of. Definitely read these two books they are a perfect beach/summer read.

Warning, you may start to crave ice cream when reading this! ☺️

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This was an amazing sequel, it was so nice to return to Penniman New England and rejoin the Udderly Delightful cast of characters. The pacing was very good and I enjoyed following Riley Rhodes as she tried to solve the murder at Moy Mull. The interactions between the different characters and their evolution from the first book was well crafted.
I enjoyed the use of the cats within the story and glad that they made frequent appearances, it is always fun to see those interactions.
If you are looking for a fun cozy mystery with a great cast of characters I highly recommend this series.

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This double mystery featuring ice cream and a Castle set in Penniman New England was a nice summer read. Former CIA Librarian and current manager of Udderly Dellightful Ice Cream, Riley Rhodes, gets drawn into the murder of, Photographer, Adam Blassco, after she discovers his body in the locked dungeon of the castle. I enjoyed Riley’s investigative style. She uncovered lots of information without being nosy. The victim, Adam, had lots of people who didn’t like him which made for a variety of suspects. It seemed like everyone was holding onto a little secret and Riley sorts through them to find the killer.

Be warned Mint Chocolate is not mentioned in the book, BUT there are plenty of delicious ice cream flavors that are. YUM!

Thank you Netgalley and St. Martin’s Press for the eArc. This is my honest review.

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If the background of an ice cream shop doesn't capture your attention, a New England mystery based in a castle will! Mint Chocolate Murder continues the story of Riley Rhodes, former CIA librarian, as she manages Udderly Delightful ice cream shop wile solving mysteries and murder at Moy Mull castle in a small town in New England. Riley has been asked to provide ice cream for the Fall Arts Festival being held at the castle, where the photographer, Adam Blasco, whose work is being featured, is found dead in a locked room that used to be the dungeon. Riley's CIA-background kicks in and she finds herself trying to figure out how Adam was murdered in the closed room and by whom. Suspects abound, as Adam was not well-liked and mis-treated past models, including his current assistant and the Festival's host. By using her research skills, considerable deductive reasoning, and putting herself in danger, Riley is able to figure out who killed Adam.

The mystery in Mint Chocolate Murder was well-developed, however you could pretty much assume from the start who the victim would be. What took time to develop was all the connections people at the festival had to the victim, how the murder could have possibly been committed, and who the actual culprit was. Each character, their motive and connection to the victim was was well-described. The full complexity of the castle was slowly revealed as its tragic past and mysterious passages were discovered. Extremely well-written and engaging book!

Of course the characters we met in the first book were present - Riley's friend Caroline, Detective Jack Voelker, sisters Flo and Gerri, Pru and Willow - and feel like old friends. Best of all, cat buddies Sprinkles and Rocky continue their antics and add to the enjoyment of the book.

I highly recommend book 2 in the Ice Cream Shop series and will look forward to many more!

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I received an advance copy from net galley. I did not know there is a 1st book. But I enjoyed reading once I got everyone figured out who each person is and trying to find out who killed was amazing. Riley stumped me with all the twist and turns in the book. The setting of the castle sounds amazing I will have to read the ist book soon as i can.

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"Riley Rhodes returns in the second delicious cozy set in a New England ice cream shop, Meri Allen's Mint Chocolate Murder!

When Udderly Delightful Ice Cream shop manager Riley Rhodes is summoned to Penniman’s Moy Mull Castle, it's the cherry on top of a successful summer season. The Gothic pile built by an eccentric New England Gilded Age millionaire has been transformed into a premiere arts colony by Maud Monaco, a reclusive former supermodel. As part of Moy Mull's Fall Arts Festival, Maud is throwing a fantasy ice cream social and hires Riley to whip up unique treats to celebrate the opening of an exhibit by Adam Blasco, a photographer as obnoxious as he is talented.

As Penniman fills up with Maud’s art-world friends arriving for the festival, gossip swirls around Blasco, who has a dark history of obsession with his models. Riley’s curiosity and instincts for sleuthing - she was a CIA librarian - are piqued, and she wonders at the hold the cold-hearted photographer has over the mistress of Moy Mull.

But when Adam is found dead behind the locked door of Moy Mull's dungeon, Riley realizes there’s more than one suspect who’d wanted to put the malicious photographer on ice."

Yes, the Gothic pile and Gilded Age mansion are all well and good but I can't be the only one willing to kill for that ice cream on the cover can I?

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