BELL, COOK AND CANDLE
Avon, Jan 2002, 6.99, 336 pp.
After numerous false starts, plenty of failures, and several times quitting out of boredom, Angle Arnolf has finally found a business that she performs well and that people appreciate. “Commercial Cakes” is doing so well that Angie barely has time to sleep. This frustrates her boyfriend homicide detective Paavo Smith, who after much deliberating, has finally worked up the courage to ask her to marry him.
Every time Paavo begins to propose, Angie is distracted, called to the phone or falls asleep. She ends up hiring two employees who are into the Goth scene while Paavo happens to work on a serial killer case involving Goths. He doesn't know how, but based on experience with his beloved, Paavo expects Angie is going to become involved in his case though he hates it when she places her life in danger.
Joanne Pence writes an ingenious mystery that is both hilarious and deadly serious, sometimes at the same time. The proposal scenes are hysterical while the action scenes involving the Goth cult are frightening even as they seem otherworldly. BELL, COOK AND CANDLE is a humorous novel that has cross-genre appeal.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner