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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Cinnamon Roll Murder - Joanne Fluke



Released March 2012

Joanne Fluke
Kensington

Reviewed by Tracy Farnsworth

Joanne Fluke's Hannah Swenson is back in her 15th book. This time, Hannah and her sister Michelle are on their way to an event with a truck filled with cookies and cinnamon rolls, hence the title Cinnamon Roll Murder, when they come across a terrible pile-up on icy roads. They decide to stop and help the passengers on an overturned tour bus.

The driver is dead, but they tend to the members of the band as well as they can. When one of the band members is later found dead in the hospital with a pair of surgical shears sticking out of his chest, Hannah, her siblings, and her mother become involved in solving another case.

Meanwhile, Hannah's ex-beau is about to get married. When her mind's not on the case, Hannah is certainly thinking about the man she loves and how he's about to make a huge mistake.

I'm going to come out and admit that I haven't been impressed with the past few Hannah Swenson books. The recipes have been amazing, the stories have had the warmth I expect, but I haven't liked the love triangle between Mike, Norman, and Hannah. Cinnamon Roll Murder takes a step on the path towards fixing that. I'm not going to give away spoilers, but I found myself intrigued with the story and by the outcome. It's nice to be excited about this series again.

I did want to note something that the author didn't suggest. If you make the cinnamon rolls, in lieu of a knife, cut the rolls with a piece of unflavored dental floss. Simply slip the piece of floss under the jelly-rolled dough, cross the ends and pull like you're tying a knot. The string cleanly cuts through the dough without squishing it. It's the trick my grandmother taught me decades ago and works perfectly for cutting any dough without ruining its shape.

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