Once again murder has come to the Texas community  of Hillside and Donut Delights bakery owner, Heather Shepherd, is back on the case helping her husband, Detective Ryan Shepherd and the Hillside Police Department catch the bad guy. Since Heather is also a licensed private investigator who else is better equipped to aid law enforcement?

Heather and her bakery and investigating assistant, Amy Givens, are both ready, willing and able to find the culprit.

Heather, Amy, and favorite donut customer, Eva Schneider are bringing some tasty donut treats to the well-deserving nurses at the Hillside Regional Emergency Room when an ambulance rushes in with patient Billy Bolde.

Ryan tells Heather later that day that someone tried to kill Billy by hitting him over the head with a rock hard fudge ball made by Heather’s donut-making competitor, Geoff Lawless. Geoff is now a suspect because he’s nowhere to be found. He hasn’t been to his home and his bakery, Delightful Donuts, is dusty and looks like nothing has been baked there in some time, which really isn’t really a bad thing since Geoff’s pastries are far from tasty.

Geoff soon become a murder suspect when the attempted murder charge changes to murder when Billy is killed in the ICU unit in the hospital. Heather doesn’t have a very high regard for Geoff but in her heart of hearts she doubts if he could actually kill anyone; steal Heather’s donut recipes maybe, but not murder. But as Heather investigates she discovers that there are others who just might have hated Billy enough to sneak into the hospital and finish what they started to do and kill the man right then and there.

Anyone could be the murderer; Billy’s wife, Billy’s sister-in-law, and all the people Billy cheated by taking their money advertising that he could teach them how to become private investigators just by taking his course. One of these people is Jamie Purdue and another is Geoff Lawless. Jamie and Geoff wanted Billy to give them back their money since the course didn’t teach them anything.

Were Jamie and Geoff so angry at being cheated that they killed Billy or is there someone else who wanted him dead? Heather doesn’t know right away but she will keep digging until she finds all the answers including who killed Billy.

“Coffee Treacle Murder” is the 24th book in Susan Gillard’s cute donut hole mystery series. Every couple of weeks Ms. Gillard writes another murder that happens in Hillside, Texas. Residents of the community might not be happy with a death occurring twice a month but guaranteed the author’s fans are always ready to settle in a read about the newest donut hole murder.

All the regular characters show up to eat Heather’s newest donut and watch how she solves the murders even if some of the characters are a suspect from time to time.

This is a fun series to get involved with. These cozies are cute, short, and well written and Susan Gillard creates some luscious donuts to get her reader’s mouth’s watering.

It’s always fun getting comfortable on a couch and reading about the newest murder and donut from this delightful long-running series.

“I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.”

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