Magic and Macaroons
A Magical Bakery Mystery, Book #5
By Bailey Cates
Author Website: baileycates.com
Brought to you by OBS Reviewer Daniele
For magical baker Katie Lightfoot, the only way to beat the Savannah summer heat is to whip up some cool treats for the Honeybee Bakery’s patrons. But when a meeting of the spellbook club is interrupted by a stranger collapsing on the floor of her shop, mumbling something about a voodoo talisman, Katie drops everything to begin investigating.
Her search for answers quickly leads her into a dangerous blend of Savannah’s infamous voodoo queens, a powerful missing charm—and a deadly witch who seems to be targeting the city’s magical community. And with the case getting hotter by the second, Katie will have to work fast to track down the talisman and the killer before the timer runs out…. (Goodreads)
Magic and Macaroons is the fifth installment in the Magical Bakery Mystery series, and it is spellbinding from the first page to the last.
Katie co-owns the Honeybee bakery in Savannah with her Aunt Lucy and Uncle Ben where they bake a little something extra into the treats. Katie and Lucy are hedgewitches, dealing mostly in kitchen and garden magic, and Katie is still learning about her abilities. Their coven, a group a ladies with varying magical specialties, meet regularly at the bakery after hours, and they are surprised one evening when a stranger staggers into the bakery looking for Katie. She delivers a disjointed message about a missing gris-gris and seeking out a voodoo queen for help before she falls into a coma. After the stranger is whisked off in an ambulance, Katie learns that she is Dawn Taite, the niece of her friend and ex police detective Frank Taite. Things get even stranger when Frank’s former partner Pete Quinn arrives to tell Katie that Frank has been found dead in an abandoned warehouse. Katie is surprised because she thought Frank had died months earlier when she had received a message from him through a medium. It looks like Frank died during a voodoo ritual, and Katie can only begin to imagine what he could have been involved in?
Katie relies on her fellow witch Cookie, who grew up around voodoo, to procure her introduction to the local voodoo queens and their sometimes dark world. Information is hard to come by at first, but Katie soon learns that if the missing gris-gris has fallen into the wrong hands, it will lead to pure evil. If she can find the talisman, she will also uncover Frank’s murderer. It quickly becomes apparent that this is a very dangerous world indeed.
I have not read the other books in the series but had no problem jumping right into the action. Ms. Cates does a masterful job of revisiting the characters’ back stories without spoiling any of the previous mysteries. Katie is likable and down to earth. Her witchy sisters provide plenty of variety in personality and skill, and they are all equally as likable. Declan, with his ability to channel his leprechaun uncle’s spirit, and Steve’s druid affiliations add even more diversity and appeal. As a dog lover, I thought Katie’s familiar Mungo was great. I also hope we see more of Mother Eulora in the future. You gotta love a voodoo queen who collects hedgehog figurines and stuffed animals.
Magic and Macaroons’ focus on voodoo was especially fascinating, and it provided rich layers of intrigue and heart pounding suspense. Though I suspected the murderer’s identity early on, there were plenty of twists to keep me reading, and the final turn took me by surprise. The Savannah setting was both atmospheric and delightful. It truly is a magical city.
Magic and Macaroons is a fun, quick read, and I recommend it to both cozy fans and those who like paranormal mysteries. I look forward to many more visits to the Honeybee Bakery.