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  • Delightful sleuth mystery

    Reviewed by Susan Sewell for Readers' Favorite When a highly sensitive young woman finds her close friend murdered, she takes it upon herself to unmask the killer in the amateur sleuth mystery Peppermint Cream Die (The HSP Mysteries #1) by Carol E. Ayer. After experiencing difficulties at her previous job, Kayla Jeffries discovers that she is highly sensitive to stimuli in the world around her, including interactions with people. Choosing to work from home to have more control over her environment, Kayla creates her home-based bakery in a peaceful oceanside community. When Kayla discovers Trudy, one of her good friends, strangled, her quiet life is disrupted. Feeling that her enhanced sensitivities are a beneficial asset when questioning people, Kayla starts investigating Trudy's murder on her own. The more she looks into the murder, the more dirt she digs up on Trudy, and unfortunately, the more scandal Kayla uncovers, the more uneasy her friends and acquaintances become. Is it possible one of her neighbors killed Trudy? Had one of Trudy's capers come back to bite her? Peppermint Cream Die (The HSP Mysteries #1) by Carol E. Ayer is a quaint whodunit depicting a person employing the aspects of a disorder to their advantage while sleuthing. With fascinating characters and a suspenseful and intricate plot, this book is a riveting read. Kayla's character is admirable as she acknowledges and accepts her sensitive nature, working to create an environment that is beneficial for her. It is an entertaining story with a unique twist that makes an excellent start for an exceptional cozy mystery. Filled with suspense, it is a delightful amateur sleuth mystery series that will thrill everyone who enjoys mystery novels filled with twisted plots and unique protagonists.

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  • A bevy of baking

    Peppermint Cream Die by Carol Ayer has Kayla Jeffries investigating the death of her friend, Trudy when not baking up tasty treats for her clients. It is a challenge for Kayla who is an HSP (Highly Sensitive Person), but she is determined to get justice. The killer believes Kayla has something he wants. He will do what it takes to recover it and tie up loose ends. Peppermint Cream Die introduces us to Kayla Jeffries who recently moved to Seaside Shores in California where she has started Kayla’s Home Baked Goods in her cozy cottage. She bakes up delicious treats for her clients and friends. We get to learn about HSP and how it affects Kayla. We see how loud noises affect her along with stressful situations. I had not heard of this condition before nor have I seen it in a cozy mystery prior to this. I found Peppermint Cream Die easy to read. I would have liked more time devoted to character development so I could learn more about Kayla. Kayla finds Trudy dead in her home which devastates her. She becomes determined to find out who harmed her friend. Kayla talks to various people, overhears some promising clues, and keeps detailed notes. Kayla shares information with her best friend, Isabella who is dating the investigating officer (allows her to get some helpful intel for Kayla). I liked the action in the story that helped propel the story forward toward the suspenseful reveal. Kayla begins dating Jason and they spend quite a bit of time together. Their romance is prominent in the story along with Kayla’s baking. I would have preferred the mystery be at the forefront. The ending is sweet and left me smiling. Peppermint Cream Die is a charming cozy mystery with a bevy of baking, a cute cat, scrumptious peppermint pie, a steady suitor, a bellicose killer, and a Merry Christmas.

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