Lye in Wait
A Home Crafting Mystery with Sophie Mae Reynolds by Cricket McRae
Review: Cricket McRae's winsome debut mystery, Lye in Wait, introduces Sophie Mae Reynolds, a widow who sets up a craft shop in her home specializing in soaps and other personal care products.
Following her best friend's divorce, Sophie Mae is asked by Meghan Bly to leave Seattle and move in with her and her daughter in the small town of Cadyville, just north of the city. She's not only offered a room but also space in the basement where she can set up a workshop to create products to sell from her home-based business. Everything is working out fine until Sophie Mae one day opens the door to her workshop and finds the body of Walter, their handyman, dead on the floor. It appears as if he had been poisoned by a concoction of lye and other toxic ingredients. The police initially call it suicide, but Sophie Mae could not believe that anyone could deliberately swallow anything containing lye. She's convinced it was murder and sets out to prove it. After all, the dead man was found in her shop!
It is entertaining to follow Sophie Mae as she becomes an amateur sleuth. She's not above being a bit boorish if it furthers her investigation. She discovers that Walter had recently come into some money, always a motive for murder. The suspects are numerous and include Walter's ex-wife, his fiancé's brother, and even Meghan's ex-husband. All cozies need the gruff but loveable detective, and true to form there's Detective Ambrose who's always on hand to remind Sophie Mae that murder investigations are best left to professionals.
Lye in Wait is an enjoyable book with a credible, if not complex, plot that's handled well. It's a fine start to this new series. And, as is typical of vocation mysteries, at the end of the book are recipes for readers who would like to try to make lye soap and facial creams.
Special thanks to guest reviewer Betty of The Betz Review for contributing her review of Lye in Wait.
Acknowledgment: Midnight Ink provided a copy of Lye in Wait for this review.
Review Copyright © 2007 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Selected reviews of other mysteries by this author …
Heaven Preserve Us
Midnight Ink (Trade Paperback), August 2008
ISBN-13: 9780738711225; ISBN-10: 0738711225
Location(s) referenced in Lye in Wait: Seattle, Washington
— ♦ —
Lye in Wait by Cricket McRae — A Home Crafting Mystery with Sophie Mae Reynolds
Publisher: Midnight Ink
Format: Trade Paperback
Publication Date: October 2007
List Price: $12.95