Reviewed By Esteemed Member Lois Grossman Graziano
Young and successful book author, Victoria Rienzi (also known as "Vic"), decides to sublet her apartment in
for a year and return to her roots in New York . She had grown tired of writing formula
mysteries with the same main character and yearned to do research on the
history of her own family, which she would then use as a subject for a book. Vic
also intended to learn how to cook from her "Nonna" (grandmother),
who had been angry and disappointed with Vic for reasons that were unclear. New Jersey
Gio Parisi, the despised potential producer of a new reality TV series which was about to be filmed at the Jersey Shore where Vic had re-located, turns up (and face down) dead, shortly after receiving his ordered meal at the local Casa Lido restaurant.
The real fun begins when Vic and her "SIL" (sister-in-law) are resolute about finding the killer, although Vic’s brother, Danny, a policeman, repeatedly warns the two women to not interfere with the investigation into Gio's apparent murder. Strangely enough, this warning doesn't seem to deter the women at all. Off they go...
Out of the list of suspects in Gio's murder is Vic’s former boyfriend, Tim, who was hired by Nonna as the sous chef at the same restaurant Gio died in.
Tim is the very same guy who had broken Vic’s heart years prior by having a relationship with another woman while Vic and Tim were together. Eventually, the "other woman" in the affair is revealed to be the wife of the murdered producer, Gio. Tim appears to be a likeable former (and possible future...?) boyfriend, who, in spite of breaking Victoria’s heart, is determined to get her past the past and reunite.
The list of suspects in the murder case included the restaurant produce delivery man, the producer's widow, the carpenter working in the restaurant, Gio’s former girlfriend, two young actors who were to star in the series, and a few other shady characters.
The story was entertaining and fun to read. I liked the intentions of the characters: the stern grandmother, the dance teacher SIL, the flashy mother, the interesting carpenter, the protective produce man, and all the others.
Also, this book made me hungry for marinara!