Review: Key Lime Pie, by Josi S. Kilpack

Key Lime Pie
Key Lime Pie
Josi S. Kilpack
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Product Description (from
When Sadie Hoffmiller’s new friend, Eric Burton, receives word that his missing daughter’s body may have been found in Florida, he immediately packs his bags. Sadie is determined to stay home and prove to everyone that she is not a busybody. But when she senses Eric is hiding something, Sadie is compelled to take action. Before she knows it, she’s in the heart of Miami, trying to piece together a trail that might just give Eric the answers he’s so desperately searching for. In the process, Sadie finds herself in the company of some colorful characters and some good ol’ southern cooking. But despite the drama and intrigue, all Sadie really wants is to go home … as soon as she does just one more thing.

Includes eight new mouthwatering recipes, tested and approved by the official bakers of Sadie’s Test Kitchen

While I’ve been reading culinary mysteries for decades now, ever since I first discovered Diane Mott Davidson’s work, I haven’t really read a lot of them recently. I mean, yes, Cleo Coyle’s coffeehouse mysteries do have recipes, but she puts them all at the end of the book. Josi S. Kilpack’s Key Lime Pie is the first I’ve read in a long time that has the recipes after each chapter, and while it took me a while not to find that jarring – it pulls me out of the book – eventually I was able to simply sink into the story.

I like Kilpack’s protagonist, Sadie Hoffmiller, woman of a “certain age” and ersatz detective, a lot. She’s smart, confident about most things, but retains a bit of the reserve that women who aren’t twenty tend to embrace. It’s nice to read a book about adults, and even see the way adults who are a bit older than I am handle relationships. I could see Sadie’s attraction to Eric – he’s a bit younger, a bit of a mystery, a bit of a scoundrel – but I like that she was honest with herself about him, and about her feelings for Pete, the steady, stable cop.

As to the story, while I thought the plot was interesting – follow your friend to Florida and help him find his lost daughter who may be dead – at times I thought things were just a little too convenient, a little too easy. Yes, people were injured, and people were killed, and yes, the ending provided a plausible resolution (I can’t say more without spoilers) – it was probably just me being overly picky as I’d read this novel in the middle of a personal marathon of the first four seasons of Bones (thank you, NetFlix).

Overall, I like Sadie, and I like Kilpack’s storytelling, and I’ll probably go read the earlier books in this series for a better picture of the character and her world.

I did not try the recipes, however. Well, not yet.

Goes well with key lime pie (obviously) and really good coffee.