The Whole Enchilada
Goldy Schultz, Book #17
By Diana Mott Davidson
Author’s Website: http://www.dianemottdavidson.com
Brought to you by guest reviewer Mary C.
The Whole Enchilada…
Goldy Schulz knows her food is to die for, but she never expects one of her best friends to actually keel over when she’s leaving a birthday party Goldy has catered. At first, everyone assumes that all the fun and excitement of the party, not to mention the rich fare, did her in.
But what looks like a coronary turns out to be a generous serving of cold-blooded murder. And the clever culprit is just getting cooking.
When a colleague—a woman who resembles Goldy—is stabbed, and Goldy is attacked outside her house, it becomes clear that the popular caterer is the main course on a killer menu. With time running out, Goldy must roll up her sleeves, sharpen her knives, and make a meal out of a devious murderer, before that killer can serve her up cold.(Goodreads)
The Goldy Schulz books have been going stale for quite some time and this latest visit with Goldy and friends is no exception. Most of the story is formulaic. The freshness and enthusiasm featured in earlier books is sadly lacking.
One of her best friends dies of an apparent heart attack after a birthday party Goldy throws for her son and the best friend’s son. While her friend and sidekick, Marla, is still refreshingly fun, Goldy is cranky, rude, and bullying. Marla has to resort to bribing individuals for information that once these two could get for free. They do manage, however, to uncover several crooked maneuverings in their snooping that tilt the scales from one suspect to another. These were nicely placed red herrings.
We are asked to believe that her husband Tom, a police investigator, uses the town’s resources to assign a policeman and policewoman to follow Goldy and his step-son Arch everywhere they went to keep them safe. I can’t see that happening in real life. At one point, Boyd, the police officer, prepared molded salads with Goldy’s assistant for a party. Really?
Despite its flaws, I did enjoy seeing Julian, Goldy’s assistant, reappear. His bright and cheerful presence was the perfect foil to Goldy’s grumpiness. Arch and his pal Gus were also an enjoyable part of the cast.
A separate playbill should have been included to keep track of the characters, motives, and back stories. Goldy’s constant rehashing of every item she discovered ad nauseam was irritating. A lot of the story felt like filler. Too much space was devoted to food prep and food talk. The ending was rushed and felt as if the series was coming to a close.
If you’re a culinary fan or a fan of the Goldy Schulz series, you’ll more than likely find this book will fill your needs. If you’re looking for a cozy to whet your appetite, it’s unlikely this one will fit the bill.