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Grilling the Subject

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Things heat up for bookstore owner Jenna Hart in the latest Cookbook Nook mystery from the Agatha Award-winning author of Fudging the Books.   As the Wild West Extravaganza rides into Crystal Cove, California, Cookbook Nook store owner Jenna Hart is ready to indulge her appetite for grilled and barbecued treats and maybe even try the Texas skip. But when the body of one of Things heat up for bookstore owner Jenna Hart in the latest Cookbook Nook mystery from the Agatha Award-winning author of Fudging the Books.   As the Wild West Extravaganza rides into Crystal Cove, California, Cookbook Nook store owner Jenna Hart is ready to indulge her appetite for grilled and barbecued treats and maybe even try the Texas skip. But when the body of one of her father’s neighbors is found the next morning smoldering in a bonfire, the rodeo revelry is extinguished.   Sylvia Gump had acquired plenty of enemies with her practice of illegally encroaching on her neighbors’ properties—including Jenna’s dad, who was off fishing by himself and has no alibi for the murder. Now it’s up to Cary Hart’s dutiful daughter to clear his name before the real killer turns up the heat and rakes someone else over the coals...


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Things heat up for bookstore owner Jenna Hart in the latest Cookbook Nook mystery from the Agatha Award-winning author of Fudging the Books.   As the Wild West Extravaganza rides into Crystal Cove, California, Cookbook Nook store owner Jenna Hart is ready to indulge her appetite for grilled and barbecued treats and maybe even try the Texas skip. But when the body of one of Things heat up for bookstore owner Jenna Hart in the latest Cookbook Nook mystery from the Agatha Award-winning author of Fudging the Books.   As the Wild West Extravaganza rides into Crystal Cove, California, Cookbook Nook store owner Jenna Hart is ready to indulge her appetite for grilled and barbecued treats and maybe even try the Texas skip. But when the body of one of her father’s neighbors is found the next morning smoldering in a bonfire, the rodeo revelry is extinguished.   Sylvia Gump had acquired plenty of enemies with her practice of illegally encroaching on her neighbors’ properties—including Jenna’s dad, who was off fishing by himself and has no alibi for the murder. Now it’s up to Cary Hart’s dutiful daughter to clear his name before the real killer turns up the heat and rakes someone else over the coals...

30 review for Grilling the Subject

  1. 5 out of 5

    Luffy

    The best thing about this series is that whoever the murderer is, or how easy was it to guess correctly the culprit's identity, it does not spoil the enjoyment of the series. It took me time to go through this particular book, but whenever I came back to the novel, it was as if there wasn't a break in the reading experience. The most frustrating aspect of the books were the recipes. Half the ingredients in the recipes cannot be readily found in my country. These 3 stars, that I award my beloved co The best thing about this series is that whoever the murderer is, or how easy was it to guess correctly the culprit's identity, it does not spoil the enjoyment of the series. It took me time to go through this particular book, but whenever I came back to the novel, it was as if there wasn't a break in the reading experience. The most frustrating aspect of the books were the recipes. Half the ingredients in the recipes cannot be readily found in my country. These 3 stars, that I award my beloved cosies, are positive ratings. Please bear that in mind. The heroine has little clues going on but the wrongdoer helped her in a comically transparent manner. That was funny. I strongly recommend this book.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    I gorged myself on this latest installment in the Cookbook Nook series by Daryl Wood Gerber. But it didn't fill me up; I want more! Our heroine Jenna Hart is hard at work getting her specialty bookstore ready for the Wild West Extravaganza in the charming Californian town of Crystal Cove. Quickly things turn deadly, and with no alibi AND an ax to grind against the victim, Jenna's father is the prime suspect. It's up to Jenna to clear her father's name and find out who really did the dirty deed. I gorged myself on this latest installment in the Cookbook Nook series by Daryl Wood Gerber. But it didn't fill me up; I want more! Our heroine Jenna Hart is hard at work getting her specialty bookstore ready for the Wild West Extravaganza in the charming Californian town of Crystal Cove. Quickly things turn deadly, and with no alibi AND an ax to grind against the victim, Jenna's father is the prime suspect. It's up to Jenna to clear her father's name and find out who really did the dirty deed. I love cozy mysteries like this: lots of subtle clues that keep you guessing, interesting and quirky characters, just the right amount of romance, and lots of yummy food! Rich and witty and light on the fluff, Grilling the Subject checks all my cozy boxes. It's full of detail and charm and suspense. This is my first trip to the charming Crystal Cove but it won't be my last. I usually read cozy series in order but I made an exception since I was lucky to win a copy of this book from the author (*Thank you, Daryl! Truly wonderful read!*) I'm glad I jumped head first into this series and now I want all the back story! In fact I've already ordered up the first book in the series, Final Sentence. I highly recommend this one to all cozy mystery fans or anyone looking for a good, tasty, satisfying read!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Tina

    I must be honest and admit that the Wild West theme in Grilling the Subject did not excite me, but the Cookbook Book Nook Mysteries being one of my favorite series, I had to read it. All the barbecue and ranch style food that chef Katie was cooking up in the The Nook Cafe kitchen had my mouth watering not to mention the the Grilling themed cookbook titles mentioned that were on display in the Cookbook Nook Shop, had me salivating Jenna Hart helps her aunt Vera run a culinary cookbook shop in Crys I must be honest and admit that the Wild West theme in Grilling the Subject did not excite me, but the Cookbook Book Nook Mysteries being one of my favorite series, I had to read it. All the barbecue and ranch style food that chef Katie was cooking up in the The Nook Cafe kitchen had my mouth watering not to mention the the Grilling themed cookbook titles mentioned that were on display in the Cookbook Nook Shop, had me salivating Jenna Hart helps her aunt Vera run a culinary cookbook shop in Crystal Cove California, The Cookbook Nook. Everyone is excited for the Wild West Extravaganza complete with horse races, rope jumping and more. Shane Maverick used to work with Jenna in advertiseing before she came to Crystal Cove. He is now a promoter for the Wild West Extravaganza. He is in a property dispute with a local named Sylvia after Shane had moved across the street from her from the local land owner. Sylvia is murdered after her house caught on fire and she was stabbed with a implement sold at her shop. Sylvia was not well liked among the locals in the area including Jenna's father,Cary after he complained about loud noise from one of Sylvia's many parties. When Cary is accused of the murder Jenna stops at nothing to try to rope in the killer even with a chilling secret coming back to haunt her that could possibly jeprodize her relationship with her current boyfriend, Rhett. I always antisipate the themes in every Cookbook Nook mystery although this one didn't thrill me the BBQ dishes and the murder never failed to keep me interested. The unbeliveable drama in Jenna's life along with the murder made Grilling the Subject a page turner, Shane was a new down right arogoant character that you love to hate. I look forward to reading and reviewing the next book in this series. FTC Disclosure: Thank you to the publisher and/or author or Net Galley for providing us with a copy of this book for review.This did not influence our thoughts in any way. All the opinions of the book are our own.

  4. 4 out of 5

    JoAn

    I am enjoying this cozy series by Ms. Gerber. The setting in the small beach community is a delight and the characters are likeable. I'm patiently waiting for my library to get the next book in the series.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Chatting About

    In the fifth book in this mouthwatering cozy series, Jenna, owner of The Cookbook Nook, has stocked the shelves with books themed for the local Wild West Extravaganza and they're selling like hotcakes. Barbeque, grilling, smoking--any kind of cowboy recipe is available. Jenna's father, Cary, retired FBI man; is on the outs with a neighbor, Sylvia Gump, who insists on throwing frequent outdoor cookouts with loud music despite the protests of himself and several other close neighbors. After Cary a In the fifth book in this mouthwatering cozy series, Jenna, owner of The Cookbook Nook, has stocked the shelves with books themed for the local Wild West Extravaganza and they're selling like hotcakes. Barbeque, grilling, smoking--any kind of cowboy recipe is available. Jenna's father, Cary, retired FBI man; is on the outs with a neighbor, Sylvia Gump, who insists on throwing frequent outdoor cookouts with loud music despite the protests of himself and several other close neighbors. After Cary and Sylvia have a heated argument, Sylvia's body is found skewered and smoking in her own backyard, and her husband insists he saw Cary running from the scene. Author Daryl Wood Gerber knows how to pen a lively and engaging plot from page one. The foods sampled by the characters throughout the story will make your tummy growl and recipes at the end of the book are an added bonus just for you. Lasso your copy of this book for several hours of reading entertainment! FTC Disclosure – The publisher sent me a digital ARC provided through NetGalley, in the hopes I would review it.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Carmen Slaughter

    I received a copy of this release in exchange for a book review. I had not read any of the previous titles in the series so I was intrigued by the premise but anxious about diving in at book five. The author does a great job of including enough backstory to make the characters familiar without spoiling the potential to revisit the earlier books. In this outing, the residents of Crystal Cove are participating in the Wild West Extravaganza. Jenna is looking forward to the festivities and the food I received a copy of this release in exchange for a book review. I had not read any of the previous titles in the series so I was intrigued by the premise but anxious about diving in at book five. The author does a great job of including enough backstory to make the characters familiar without spoiling the potential to revisit the earlier books. In this outing, the residents of Crystal Cove are participating in the Wild West Extravaganza. Jenna is looking forward to the festivities and the food but can’t shake a feeling of menace in the air. Her father is one of several neighbors at odds with Sylvia Gump because of her obnoxious behavior and unscrupulous business dealings. When she is murdered Jenna’s dad is one of the suspects and she is determined to prove his innocence. There is also a subplot regarding Jenna’s past and her current romance which kept me engaged. This was a fun read with just the right blend of humor and suspense. The relationships between the characters is believable and I got hungry several times with the great culinary descriptions. I really enjoyed GRILLING THE SUBJECT and I am thrilled there are four other titles for me to read while I wait for another entry into this fun series!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Mark Baker

    Crystal Cove is celebrating all things western, and Jenna and the Cookbook Nook are joining in by promoting BBQ. However, things take a tragic turn when one of Jenna’s father’s neighbors turns up dead in a bonfire. With her father a prime suspect, Jenna must find a way to clear his name. I truly love the different themes we get in this series, each one adds a unique flavor to the story. The characters are fabulous as well, and they definitely feel like old friends here. Toss in a plots with plent Crystal Cove is celebrating all things western, and Jenna and the Cookbook Nook are joining in by promoting BBQ. However, things take a tragic turn when one of Jenna’s father’s neighbors turns up dead in a bonfire. With her father a prime suspect, Jenna must find a way to clear his name. I truly love the different themes we get in this series, each one adds a unique flavor to the story. The characters are fabulous as well, and they definitely feel like old friends here. Toss in a plots with plenty of suspects and twists and you’ve got the recipe for another winner. NOTE: I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. Read my full review at Carstairs Considers.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Amy

    Grilling The Subject by Daryl Wood Gerber is the 5th book in this wonderful series. Crystal Cove is celebrating a Wild West Extravaganza with lots of contests, activities, food tasting, stagecoach races and delicious recipes. A murder has occurred, Sylvia is found dead and this one becomes more personal to Jenna as her dad is a suspect. Jenna also has to think about her relationship with Rhett and her dead husband David in order to move forward. This story had twists and turns, plenty of suspects Grilling The Subject by Daryl Wood Gerber is the 5th book in this wonderful series. Crystal Cove is celebrating a Wild West Extravaganza with lots of contests, activities, food tasting, stagecoach races and delicious recipes. A murder has occurred, Sylvia is found dead and this one becomes more personal to Jenna as her dad is a suspect. Jenna also has to think about her relationship with Rhett and her dead husband David in order to move forward. This story had twists and turns, plenty of suspects to keep you guessing. Love Jenna's cat Tigger and his personality and being back in Crystal Cove with her friends and family. This is a great cozy that I would recommend. I received a copy of this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Taryn

    A Wild Ride Ride along with Jenna Hart while she delights in the Wild West Extravaganza, tries to solve a murder, and works through some relationship issues. This 5th book in Gerber's Cookbook Nook series is a definite page turner that keeps you on your toes the whole way through. Jenna is such a down to earth character you will treasure getting to know her and through her, some fantastic friends and family. This lovely series is filled with a huge variety of cookbooks, eccentric characters, tast A Wild Ride Ride along with Jenna Hart while she delights in the Wild West Extravaganza, tries to solve a murder, and works through some relationship issues. This 5th book in Gerber's Cookbook Nook series is a definite page turner that keeps you on your toes the whole way through. Jenna is such a down to earth character you will treasure getting to know her and through her, some fantastic friends and family. This lovely series is filled with a huge variety of cookbooks, eccentric characters, tasty recipes, plus an awesome cat named Tigger. Gerber has yet to disappoint and I always look forward to her next story!!!

  10. 5 out of 5

    AngryGreyCat

    This is book number 5 in the Cookbook Nook Mystery Series, Grilling the Subject. The sleuth, Jenna Hart, finds herself investigating the death of an obnoxious neighbor to clear her father. Along with the murder investigation, a Wild West Extravaganza is in town adding to the drama, Bailey is in the midst of wedding planning, Jenna and Rhett’s own relationship is heating up, and finally, is someone following Jenna? If so, why? The murder plot is well done and has plenty of suspects and clues to ke This is book number 5 in the Cookbook Nook Mystery Series, Grilling the Subject. The sleuth, Jenna Hart, finds herself investigating the death of an obnoxious neighbor to clear her father. Along with the murder investigation, a Wild West Extravaganza is in town adding to the drama, Bailey is in the midst of wedding planning, Jenna and Rhett’s own relationship is heating up, and finally, is someone following Jenna? If so, why? The murder plot is well done and has plenty of suspects and clues to keep you guessing, but Jenna’s personal life is equally important in this outing in this series. Jenna Hart has shown a great deal of character growth since this series began, as have some of the other recurring characters. It has been a lovely series to read and get to know the characters over the course of time. Highly recommended cozy mystery read!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Christine

    : The theme of this book was the wild west and all things barbecued. Jenna's father is accused of murder when a witness swears they saw him running away from a fire where a body was found. Jenna investigates to try and prove her fathers innocence. She also deals with her former advertising coworker who had a dispute with the victim. This wasn't one of my favorites from the cookbook nook series. I had a hard time getting into it and the mystery aspect didn't really hold my attention. I was more i : The theme of this book was the wild west and all things barbecued. Jenna's father is accused of murder when a witness swears they saw him running away from a fire where a body was found. Jenna investigates to try and prove her fathers innocence. She also deals with her former advertising coworker who had a dispute with the victim. This wasn't one of my favorites from the cookbook nook series. I had a hard time getting into it and the mystery aspect didn't really hold my attention. I was more interested in what was going on with Jennas personal life.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

    It's Wild West Extravaganza days in Crystal Cove, and The Cookbook Nook Cafe is participating with a host of wonderful "Cowboy Food" items! However, when a rather nasty woman turns up dead in a bonfire, and Jenna's father is the chief suspect, the party is over so far as Jenna is concerned. She WILL find out who this killer is, and clear her father's name!

  13. 4 out of 5

    OpenBookSociety.com

    http://openbooksociety.com/article/gr... Grilling the Subject Cookbook Nook Mystery, Book #5 By Daryl Wood Gerber ISBN13: 9780425279410 Author website: http://www.darylwoodgerber.com Brought to you by OBS reviewer Kayt Synopsis: Things heat up for bookstore owner Jenna Hart in the latest Cookbook Nook mystery from the Agatha Award-winning author of Fudging the Books. As the Wild West Extravaganza rides into Crystal Cove, California, Cookbook Nook store owner Jenna Hart is ready to indulge her appetite fo http://openbooksociety.com/article/gr... Grilling the Subject Cookbook Nook Mystery, Book #5 By Daryl Wood Gerber ISBN13: 9780425279410 Author website: http://www.darylwoodgerber.com Brought to you by OBS reviewer Kayt Synopsis: Things heat up for bookstore owner Jenna Hart in the latest Cookbook Nook mystery from the Agatha Award-winning author of Fudging the Books. As the Wild West Extravaganza rides into Crystal Cove, California, Cookbook Nook store owner Jenna Hart is ready to indulge her appetite for grilled and barbecued treats and maybe even try the Texas skip. But when the body of one of her father’s neighbors is found the next morning smoldering in a bonfire, the rodeo revelry is extinguished. Sylvia Gump had acquired plenty of enemies with her practice of illegally encroaching on her neighbors’ properties—including Jenna’s dad, who was off fishing by himself and has no alibi for the murder. Now it’s up to Cary Hart’s dutiful daughter to clear his name before the real killer turns up the heat and rakes someone else over the coals… Review: Daryl Wood Gerber has another hit on her hands. Grilling the Subject is jam packed with suspects, shocking surprises and loads of cowboy fun. Crystal Cove, California is hosting the Wild West Extravaganza and things are about to get wild. Jenna Hart and her friends are ready to put on their spurs, practice their yeehaws and enjoy some serious grilled and barbecued treats. Before the festival starts though, it seems there is some trouble brewing in Jenna’s dad’s picturesque neighborhood. Sylvia Gump’s encroaching on Cary (Jenna’s dad) and the others and that is not even the half of it. Realtor Ava is trying to rally the troops to put a stop to it and Cary is all for it. Someone however puts a stop to Sylvia all together with. Unfortunately, Cary is a suspect and he does not have any witnesses to his alibi. Even though Jenna has no desire to get involved in the murder investigation, she does not see much progress from Cinnamon and the Crystal Cove police force. What’s a daughter to do? Sylvia was not well liked so there are suspects aplenty. Add in affairs, possible blackmail and more and Jenna is faced with more questions than answers. Jenna also thinks someone is following her. Is she just imagining things? Fires are not limited to the grills either Things get scary and heated and the suspect list is still full. Sylvia’s personality definitely did not make her any friends, at least not any female ones. Aunt Vera does a tarot card reading on Jenna, whether she wanted it or not. Let me just say, Vera is good. A real shocker comes in play and turns Jenna’s life on end. No spoilers here, but hang on to your cowboy hats. That just complicates matters for Jenna in her hunt to prove her dad’s innocence. The suspect list seems to grow instead of getting shorter the more she learns about the deceased and her life. I was well and truly shocked by some things in the latest installment of “Cookbook Nook Mysteries”. Grilling the Subject is as enjoyable as a deliciously marinated and well grilled steak. Hot off the grill, this read is fun, fast paced and full to the brim with enjoyment. I love the characters and the friendships. The story is exceptionally well written and the mystery kept me guessing. I do not think you have to read the others in this series to enjoy this one, but read them too. They are all wonderful. I would recommend this cozy to any foodies and lovers of a fun mystery. Jenna is a great protagonist and her family and friends are always entertaining. Sink your teeth into Grilling the Subject and be ready for a spicy treat! *OBS would like to thank the publisher for supplying a free copy of this title in exchange for an honest review as part of their ongoing blog tour*

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kristina

    Grilling the Subject by Daryl Wood Gerber is the fifth book in A Cookbook Nook Mystery series. Jenna Hart and the town are getting ready for the Wild West Extravaganza that is coming to Crystal Cove. All the shops have decorated to reflect the wild west theme including Jenna’s The Cookbook Nook. Then Jenna finds out that the Shane Maverick is now running the WWE. They used to work together at Taylor and Squib Advertising in San Francisco. Shane is a type of guy that reminds you of a snake oil sa Grilling the Subject by Daryl Wood Gerber is the fifth book in A Cookbook Nook Mystery series. Jenna Hart and the town are getting ready for the Wild West Extravaganza that is coming to Crystal Cove. All the shops have decorated to reflect the wild west theme including Jenna’s The Cookbook Nook. Then Jenna finds out that the Shane Maverick is now running the WWE. They used to work together at Taylor and Squib Advertising in San Francisco. Shane is a type of guy that reminds you of a snake oil salesman (just what they do not need). Cary Hart, Jenna’s father and the other homeowners in the his neighborhood have been having difficulty with Sylvia Gump over some land. Sylvia is trying to take over other people’s property. Sylvia has taken to throwing loud parties (bands with electric guitars) and has even erected an ostentatious fountain (along with hedges and fences). Cary has a loud argument with Sylvia on the phone when she is setting up for another party. The next morning Sylvia is found dead by her fountain. Cary was out fishing at the time (by himself, of course) which means he has no alibi. Jenna will do whatever is necessary to clear her father off the suspect list (which considering Sylvia is quite long). Will Jenna be able to wrangle the real killer? Jenna has felt that someone is following her. She has only been able to see a shadowy figure. Who is it and why are the following her around town? Jenna is in for the shock of a lifetime when she discovers the individual’s true identity. Join Jenna as well as her family and friends for barbecue, iced tea, and other delectable delights in Grilling the Subject. Grilling the Subject is an entertaining novel. It has developed characters, a gorgeous setting in sunny California, and great descriptions of cookbooks. The book is easy to read and has a good pace. The book is 277 pages long and has some recipes from Katie, Jenna, and Bailey at the end (with their comments). I give Grilling the Subject 4 out of 5 stars (I liked it). The mystery will lead you on a merry chase, but I thought it was easy to solve (I read a lot of mysteries and love solving them). I was surprised by the person who is following Jenna. It was a great twist. While this is the fifth book in the series, it can be read alone (the author gives the reader’s Jenna’s backstory to catch them up). I do, though, highly recommend you go and read the other four books when you get a chance (if you have not enjoyed them yet). I look forward to the next A Cookbook Nook Mystery (and any other books by Daryl Wood Gerber). I received a complimentary copy of the novel in exchange for an honest review. The opinions and comments expressed above are strictly my own.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    Another winner in the Cookbook Nook series! There are no spoilers in this review but it's a doozy of a book. Some of the things I loved... * Jenna knows food but doesn't cook. * The real life cookbook titles peppered throughout. * Food is a constant all the way through the book. * Recipes! * All the suspects and the way Jenna herself flip flopped during the journey to the truth. A couple of minor irritants (I'm grasping here, there isn't really much to dislike) ... * The way Jenna doesn't share her Another winner in the Cookbook Nook series! There are no spoilers in this review but it's a doozy of a book. Some of the things I loved... * Jenna knows food but doesn't cook. * The real life cookbook titles peppered throughout. * Food is a constant all the way through the book. * Recipes! * All the suspects and the way Jenna herself flip flopped during the journey to the truth. A couple of minor irritants (I'm grasping here, there isn't really much to dislike) ... * The way Jenna doesn't share her uneasy feeling of being watched. * How nobody seems to hear her when she calls to them on the street. I usually try to pace myself during good books, I don't like to speed through it and miss some of the nuances. This book kept me coming back to read "just a little bit more" more times than I care to admit. There were a couple of times that I had to turn the dryer back on to un-wrinkle forgotten laundry. I had to heat up cold coffee more times than I care to admit. I may have even forgotten that the dogs were out in the rain. If you like cozies, cats, food, and recipes please give this book a try...I don't think you'll be disappointed.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Clare O'Beara

    Jenna Hart left her advertising work to help her aunt run a cookbook store in a small town. The business seems to pay just enough and she is settled in with a gentleman friend, good neighbours and hearty recipes to learn. The town is staging a rodeo with a nice touch - animal friendly performances. As this will attract tourists the Santa Cruz-area town is going all out to grab passing trade including trail cooking and barbecues which are called grills. I've been noticing a trend in light crime t Jenna Hart left her advertising work to help her aunt run a cookbook store in a small town. The business seems to pay just enough and she is settled in with a gentleman friend, good neighbours and hearty recipes to learn. The town is staging a rodeo with a nice touch - animal friendly performances. As this will attract tourists the Santa Cruz-area town is going all out to grab passing trade including trail cooking and barbecues which are called grills. I've been noticing a trend in light crime to throw in a colourful spectacle but make it just background, unrelated to the murder. A murder occurs, sure enough related to town issues rather than running a rodeo. The wealthy owner of the jewellery store has been angering some locals with her plan to buy up all the empty houses in town. This does occur and on a much bigger scale, so it's quite topical. Jenna also has someone walk back into her life whom she never thought to see again. This major issue distracts her for a lot of the book so her smart aunt has to do some of the sleuthing. The atmosphere and location are well described and all characters feel very real. Enjoy the rodeo and the recipes. An ARC copy was sent to me for an unbiased review.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Dawn Frazier

    Jenna and the gang are back, in this fifth installment of the series, getting ready for the Wild West Extravaganza. This book is great, I loved every page. Full of yummy new recipes, descriptions of mouth watering food, and of course it takes place in Crystal Cove, CA, one of my favorite fictional cozy towns. I love Jennas bookstore, it would definitely be a place I would visit often! Her Aunt Vera is a hoot, always lots of fun to catch up with her, and I love how so many cookbooks and cozy myst Jenna and the gang are back, in this fifth installment of the series, getting ready for the Wild West Extravaganza. This book is great, I loved every page. Full of yummy new recipes, descriptions of mouth watering food, and of course it takes place in Crystal Cove, CA, one of my favorite fictional cozy towns. I love Jennas bookstore, it would definitely be a place I would visit often! Her Aunt Vera is a hoot, always lots of fun to catch up with her, and I love how so many cookbooks and cozy mysteries are mentioned throughout the book, makes me want to go buy them all. Jennas dad gets himself into some hot water, after an argument with a neighbor, who turns up dead! There are so many suspects in the book, Jenna has her hands full trying to clear her dads name. Throw in some twists and turns, and some romance too! There is a huge surprise in the book, I was shocked to say the least. I went through many emotions reading this, parts where I was happy, sad, even a little angry, then happy again! I think this is one of my favorites in the series so far. Such a great read, don't miss it!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Celia

    I enjoyed this book immensely -- from the Wild West Extravaganza, the wonderful barbecue recipes with cookbook references and cozy book recommendations, to, of course, a murder. The victim was disliked by many residents in the town of Crystal Cove, so there is no shortage of suspects. There are also some very unexpected twists and turns in the story as Jenna tries to exonerate her father of the crime and find the real killer. I really enjoyed my journey back to Crystal Cove and reconnecting with I enjoyed this book immensely -- from the Wild West Extravaganza, the wonderful barbecue recipes with cookbook references and cozy book recommendations, to, of course, a murder. The victim was disliked by many residents in the town of Crystal Cove, so there is no shortage of suspects. There are also some very unexpected twists and turns in the story as Jenna tries to exonerate her father of the crime and find the real killer. I really enjoyed my journey back to Crystal Cove and reconnecting with the characters who really have become like family to me. Jenna has really come into her own in this book and is a strong and vibrant protagonist. I highly recommend this book, and cannot wait for the next book to come out in Daryl Wood Gerber's wonderful Cookbook Nook series. I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Morin

    This is a wonderful addition to a great series. Jenna Hart is a strong character and reading about her daily adventures is sure to put a smile on any reader's face. In Grilling the Subject, it's time for the Wild West Extravaganza in Crystal Cove and the delectable barbecued treats are bringing in the tourists. Local resident Sylvia Gump is a force to be reckoned with and has made plenty of enemies with her rude attitude and arrogant ways. When Sylvia's body is found in the remains of a fire, the This is a wonderful addition to a great series. Jenna Hart is a strong character and reading about her daily adventures is sure to put a smile on any reader's face. In Grilling the Subject, it's time for the Wild West Extravaganza in Crystal Cove and the delectable barbecued treats are bringing in the tourists. Local resident Sylvia Gump is a force to be reckoned with and has made plenty of enemies with her rude attitude and arrogant ways. When Sylvia's body is found in the remains of a fire, the suspect list is long, but heading the list is none other than Jenna's dad, Cary Hart. This story was so good, I couldn't believe all the twists and turns that were going on. The author really hit it out of the park with this whirlwind story.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Becky

    I really enjoyed reading Book #5 in this series and I appreciated how the story lines tied together and the creative alibis. Once again, the Cook Book Nook is complementing the town's big tourist activity with enticing foods in the store and at the cafe and tempting cookbooks (I love cookbooks!) for customers to browse and buy. Part of the pleasure of reading this book and others in the series is that the Cookbook Nook is a place where cookbook lovers and foodies and their children would love to I really enjoyed reading Book #5 in this series and I appreciated how the story lines tied together and the creative alibis. Once again, the Cook Book Nook is complementing the town's big tourist activity with enticing foods in the store and at the cafe and tempting cookbooks (I love cookbooks!) for customers to browse and buy. Part of the pleasure of reading this book and others in the series is that the Cookbook Nook is a place where cookbook lovers and foodies and their children would love to hangout. The core characters are all excellent and believable! I had delayed reading this a few years, because I thought it was going to be the last in the series. Happy;y for fans, Book #6 is coming this year!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Elaine

    I received a digital copy of this book for my honest review from Netgalley and the author. This is another great book in this series. Jenna is bound and determined to figure out who killed Sylvia and to clear her father's name. So many people disliked her, and for good reasons! The characters and the town of Crystal Cove are all fun to get to know. The festivals that this small touristy town has are very interesting. Because of a certain surprising character showing up in this book, I do recommend I received a digital copy of this book for my honest review from Netgalley and the author. This is another great book in this series. Jenna is bound and determined to figure out who killed Sylvia and to clear her father's name. So many people disliked her, and for good reasons! The characters and the town of Crystal Cove are all fun to get to know. The festivals that this small touristy town has are very interesting. Because of a certain surprising character showing up in this book, I do recommend reading them in order.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Robyn

    I love this series and this book did not disappoint. I have to say this was my favorite book in this series so far. I was hooked from the beginning and couldn't put it down. This book takes so many twists and turns, it kept me on the edge of my seat and I didn't want it to end. Jenna definitely went through a lot, but came out a stronger person because of it. If you love food, cats and people with a lot of personality, then this is the book and the series for you. I highly recommend it!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Donna

    I like this series setting - a Cookbook book store and cafe. BUT - there were way too many "What if he .." "What did that mean.." "Did she know that.." musings from the narrator throughout this book. It overwhelmed this one for me.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    Really enjoy this series. The author has developed a number of quirky characters and always has interesting plots. Can't wait to finish this newest addition.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Peggy R

    I can't believe that I let myself get so woefully behind in this series. I was happy to finally pick up book 5 in the series and return to Crystal Cove. This is such a fun and entertaining series. All of the characters are very likable and the town is such a charming setting. I love how each book seems to have a theme with a different event at the center of each book. This time around it was the Wild West Extravaganza. Jenna is once again at the center of solving a mystery, this time because her I can't believe that I let myself get so woefully behind in this series. I was happy to finally pick up book 5 in the series and return to Crystal Cove. This is such a fun and entertaining series. All of the characters are very likable and the town is such a charming setting. I love how each book seems to have a theme with a different event at the center of each book. This time around it was the Wild West Extravaganza. Jenna is once again at the center of solving a mystery, this time because her father is a suspect. Those two are just alike, both of them stubborn. The author really made the reader work hard to figure out the killer in this book. There are plenty of suspects given that the victim was not well-liked and caused plenty of trouble for a number of people in her neighborhood. The author weaves a lot of clues for the reader to sift through and they all point to someone different. In the end, Jenna does what she does best, with a little luck she puts all the pieces together to come up with the identity of the killer, which is revealed in a climactic fashion. There is also a twist in Jenna's personal life that I didn't anticipate, but the author does a good job of wrapping it all by the end. Luckily, I purchased the 6th book a little while ago when it was on sale, so I'll be returning to Crystal Cove in the not too distant future.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Nichole

    Thumbs up, Ms. Gerber, for the many mouthwatering recipes for barbecue and other western-themed foods! Thumbs down for having Jenna stay with boring old Rhett. 3 stars

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kelly

    Man, I was totally bamboozled with this one! Every time I thought I had it figured out, something else happened. One heck of a good Mystery!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Mary Brown

    Grilling The Subject Cookbook Nook Mystery, Book 5 Daryl wood Gerber 5 Stars Synopsis: Things heat up for bookstore owner Jenna Hart in the latest Cookbook Nook mystery from the Agatha Award-winning author of Fudging the Books. As the Wild West Extravaganza rides into Crystal Cove, California, Cookbook Nook store owner Jenna Hart is ready to indulge her appetite for grilled and barbecued treats and maybe even try the Texas skip. But when the body of one of her father’s neighbors is found the next mor Grilling The Subject Cookbook Nook Mystery, Book 5 Daryl wood Gerber 5 Stars Synopsis: Things heat up for bookstore owner Jenna Hart in the latest Cookbook Nook mystery from the Agatha Award-winning author of Fudging the Books. As the Wild West Extravaganza rides into Crystal Cove, California, Cookbook Nook store owner Jenna Hart is ready to indulge her appetite for grilled and barbecued treats and maybe even try the Texas skip. But when the body of one of her father’s neighbors is found the next morning smoldering in a bonfire, the rodeo revelry is extinguished. Sylvia Gump had acquired plenty of enemies with her practice of illegally encroaching on her neighbors’ properties—including Jenna’s dad, who was off fishing by himself and has no alibi for the murder. Now it’s up to Cary Hart’s dutiful daughter to clear his name before the real killer turns up the heat and rakes someone else over the coals... (Goodreads) Review: In Crystal Cove, they sure do like their Wild West Extravaganza. All of the shops decorate for the celebration and stock merchandise that would make an old cowboy happy. But when a dead body is found, the happy atmosphere takes a nosedive. And when Jenna’s dad becomes the number one suspect, she knows she has to investigate the murder and clear his name before the festival becomes his last rodeo. The characters are well rounded, well developed and three dimensional. I really enjoyed reading about the interactions between Jenna and her family and friends. Most of them are people you would want to be friends with and spend time with. The writing style flows smoothly and the book is an easy read. The author is very talented in her descriptive writing and through much of the book, I felt like I was right there watching all the action going on around me. The mystery is well plotted and carried on well throughout the book. Since the victim is not the most well liked person in Crystal Cove, there are many suspects to consider. There were enough twists and turns to keep me guessing and made it difficult to solve the mystery, which I like. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a well crafted cozy mystery. This is the first book of the series that I have read and I did not have any trouble following the story and the characters. But like most series, I would think you would want to read all of the books, to see the character development and to just be able to spend more time with everyone. That is what I plan on doing. I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for a honest review. I would like to thank NetGalley and Berkley Publishing Group for the opportunity to read and review this book.

  29. 5 out of 5

    LORI (Dollycas) CASWELL

    Dollycas’s Thoughts Welcome to Crystal Cove! Just in time for the Wild West Extravaganza! Jenna is excited about all the tourists arriving and the new people coming into the Cookbook Nook. But grilling isn’t only happening at the festival. Sylvia Gump has been found dead in a bonfire on property shared with her neighbors. Including Jenna’s dad! He was seen in the area and is the prime suspect. Jenna is burning around town trying to prove what everybody knows, that he is no killer! She intends to Dollycas’s Thoughts Welcome to Crystal Cove! Just in time for the Wild West Extravaganza! Jenna is excited about all the tourists arriving and the new people coming into the Cookbook Nook. But grilling isn’t only happening at the festival. Sylvia Gump has been found dead in a bonfire on property shared with her neighbors. Including Jenna’s dad! He was seen in the area and is the prime suspect. Jenna is burning around town trying to prove what everybody knows, that he is no killer! She intends to grill anyone that could have killed the woman. Lord knows she had plenty of enemies! Another spectacular addition to this series! Daryl Wood Gerber creates such wonderful characters. They are fun, engaging and so entertaining. I love the way the couples are evolving but this time a surprise visitor to Crystal Cove could throw a huge twist into one of the relationships. I don’t want to spoil anything but the author had my emotions running out of control from mad to sad, and everywhere in between. I even had to reach for a tissue. To me that is the test of a great story. It is more than following the clues and figuring out the guilty party. If the story really makes you feel something, it is a story that will hold you beyond the final page. It is for this reason I recommend this series be read in order. You need to see how everything began. That being said the mystery part of this story is well written and plotted as well. So many suspects and so many people withholding bits and pieces of the truth. As the pages continued I thought “Are we ever going to pin the right person down?” Then there was the “aha moment” and I realized I had missed some key clues. This author is a master at doing that to me. I hone on something so interesting that I forget to keep track of the details. One part of this book that I really enjoyed is the location and not just sunny California. Jenna’s father and his neighbors all own a small piece of property that connects their lots. It is a place to gather and enjoy each other’s company. Sadly Sylvia Gump didn’t realize what a treasure this was and abused it terribly. Others also didn’t appreciate it fully either. This is a fantastic idea and I wish more communities would have places like this. In the days when everyone want to put up fences and walls it is refreshing to have community places like this. Years ago I lived in a place where there was a park complete with playground equipment where the neighbors would congregate while their children played, even having cookouts and picnics. What a great way to build a true friendships both for the adults and the kids. I loved everything about this story! The worst part is now waiting for the next book in the series. Write fast Daryl!! I can hardly wait!!

  30. 4 out of 5

    Valerie

    “Grilling the Subject” is the 5th book in the Cookbook Nook series by Daryl Wood Gerber. This was actually the first one of that series that I had read, but I enjoyed it enough that I have since gone back and read the rest of the books in this series. Once again, I find myself wishing Goodreads and Amazon and some of the others would allow additional 1/2 star ratings. I would actually classify this book as a 4.5 out of 5. When I first started this book, I was immediately hooked by Jenna, Bailey, “Grilling the Subject” is the 5th book in the Cookbook Nook series by Daryl Wood Gerber. This was actually the first one of that series that I had read, but I enjoyed it enough that I have since gone back and read the rest of the books in this series. Once again, I find myself wishing Goodreads and Amazon and some of the others would allow additional 1/2 star ratings. I would actually classify this book as a 4.5 out of 5. When I first started this book, I was immediately hooked by Jenna, Bailey, Katie, Aunt Vera, Rhett and the whole cast of characters. They’re wonderful! They’re well-rounded individuals, they have their ups and downs like anyone, they’re realistic and they’re fabulous. This particular book finds our group and the town of Crystal Cove hosting the Wild West Extravaganza, a family-friendly, animal-friendly, Wild West style festival. While the festivities and the barbecue-themed foods occupy our heroine in her store and within the town, the murder in this book takes place away from the festival and its festivities. This murder once again has Jenna out looking for a murderer, this time because her own father has been accused at being at the scene! On top of all that, Jenna has her own surprise to deal with. I don’t want to spoil it, but it’s a doozy! It shakes up life for Jenna and her friends for a good chunk of the book. This book kept me riveted. It had a fast-paced, well thought out plot line, enough surprises to keep you on your toes but not so many that you end up in a constant state of suspense, and fabulous characters. I had no idea who the killer was until just before the author revealed it, even then, I only had an inkling and still wasn’t completely sure, until it was revealed and solved. I highly recommend this book to any cozy mystery reader! Enjoy it! ** I received a free ecopy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for my fair and honest review. My opinions and views are my own and were not influenced by this. ** Originally posted on: Valerie's Musings

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