Author: Jenn McKinlay
Series: Cupcake Bakery Mystery, Book #4
Genre: Mystery (cozy mystery)
Rating: 4 Stars
Synopsis: It may be summertime, but sales at Fairy Tale Cupcakes are below zero—and owners Melanie Cooper and Angie DeLaura are willing to try anything to heat things up. So when local legend Slim Hazard offers them the chance to sell cupcakes at the annual Juniper Pass rodeo, they’re determined to rope in a pretty payday!
But not everyone at the Juniper Pass is as sweet for Fairy Tale Cupcakes as Slim — including star bull-rider Ty Stokes. Mel and Angie try to steer clear of the cowboy’s short fuse, but when his dead body is found face down in the hay, it’s a whole different rodeo.
With a vengeful murderer on the loose, the ladies are quickly realizing that while they came to save their business, they may have to save themselves—and that’s no bull.
Review: Craving a cozy mystery read? You’ll be sweetly satisfied with this fourth delicious installment of the Cupcake Bakery Mystery series by Jenn McKinlay. Red Velvet Revenge has the whole gang (Mel, Angie, Tate, Oz, and Marty) from Fairy Tale Cupcakes going on a road trip to sell cupcakes at the rodeo, only they wind up involved in a murder investigation that Mel can’t seem to stay out of. I was pleased that the ensemble of characters went on the trip, as the the story line would have been lacking otherwise. Initially I was missing Joe DeLaura from the story. But, as Melanie’s love interest, and Angie’s older brother, Joe made an appearance towards the end that made up for his lack of earlier involvement– in a big way. The tension between the Mel/Joe and Angie/Tate relationships keep me turning the page as much as they mystery does. What I appreciate most about this book is that while I’m given enough clues to try and figure out the murderer and his/her motivation, there is always a twist that comes along to surprise me. I was left guessing until the very end. And, I love these believable, quirky, endearing characters and their constant habit of quoting the perfect movie line at the perfect time. I recommend reading the series in order– you’ll do yourself a disservice, and won’t enjoy the book nearly enough, if you start with this book. The characters, and their relationships to one another, are more developed by Red Velvet Revenge (book #4) and you’ll be missing out on some essential history. The previous three books in the Cupcake Bakery Mystery series are just as enjoyable and definitely worth a read.