The Golden Spoon

3.5 stars

For six amateur bakers, competing in Bake Week is a dream come true. A former journalist, a pie aficionado, a math teacher, a bored millionaire, a retired nurse, and a building restorer are all vying for the coveted Golden Spoon.

A big white tent is pitched at Grafton Manor, an aging Vermont estate to film the tenth season of the popular TV show. But for the show’s famous host, cookbook legend Betsy Martin, Bake Week is more than just a competition. Grafton Manor is her family’s home and legacy, and Bake Week is her life’s work.

But as the competition heats up, minor acts of sabotage begin; sugar and salt swap places, gasoline masquerades as orange essence, a refrigerator door mysteriously stands ajar, and a burner gets cranked up. Then a body is discovered, and it’s clear not everyone is there for the love of baking.

As a fan of The Great British Baking Show, I was naturally drawn to this baking themed mystery. It’s billed as a mystery/thriller, but it leans more towards the cozy, locked-room subgenre, which isn’t my cup of tea. For the uninitiated, cozies are light-hearted mysteries that keep sex and violence offstage.

If I’m honest, the first half of the book had me yawning, and the ending felt like a sprint to the finish line. However, a delightful twist at the end caught me by surprise.

The Golden Spoon is a light, intriguing read. If you like authors such as Joanne Fluke, M.C. Beaton, Alan Bradley, Richard Osman, Rhys Bowen, or Lillian Jackson Braun, this book could be perfect for you. For me, it was just okay. It’s slated to become a limited series on Hulu, so if you are a fan of Hallmark and Lifetime movies, it could be an enjoyable watch. 3.5 stars.

** I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book; all opinions are my own.


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