Mastering the Art of French Murder

Tabitha Knight arrives from Detroit for an extended stay with her French grandfather. Thanks to her neighbor and friend Julia Child, she is learning how to cook for her Grandpère and Oncle Rafe.

The night after Child’s sister, Dort, hosts a party at Child’s apartment, a guest named Thérèse Lognon is discovered dead in the basement. The murder weapon is a knife from Julia’s kitchen.

When Inspector Merveille reveals that a note, in Tabitha’s handwriting, was found in the dead woman’s pocket, Tabitha conducts her own investigation to find the actual killer before she or one of her friends ends up in prison. Much to the inspector’s consternation, Tabitha gathers clues until another murder occurs. Tabitha’s investigation leads her to Théâtre Monceau, a local English-language theater where Dort worked with the victim, and where most of the suspects are rehearsing an Agatha Christie play.

I bounced between the audiobook and the ebook for this title, which was very convenient. Polly Lee well narrated the audiobook and does a fine job.

On the positive side, I enjoyed the cooking tips Julie offered Tabitha. On the less-than-positive side, the rookie writing had me wanting to edit as I read. Not a good sign. The author made Julia Child sound imbecilic, particularly when it came to the investigation of the murder. She was a CIA agent, for goodness’ sake, and would have been smarter than that. I also found the protagonist irritating… so glad this is a short book.

A quick, light read, even though the subject is murder. It wasn’t a bad book, just not a good one. I doubt I’ll read the rest of the series. 2 stars.

** Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a complimentary copy of this book. The opinions are my own.

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