as told to B.B. Haywood,
author of Town in a Cinnamon Toast,
available everywhere on Feb. 2, 2016
Candy Holliday, I tell myself, you should know better. But here I go again!
I know I promised more than a few people (including our local police chief, Darryl Durr) that I would stay out of trouble and stop playing detective. It’s just that one of the most important events of the year is going to happen in three days, and there’s trouble in the air, thanks to a missing best man and a misguided bottle of champagne!
You see, my best friend and sidekick, Maggie Tremont, and our local German baker, Georg Wolfsburger (commonly known as Herr Georg) are getting married—right here at Blueberry Acres, the blueberry farm I run with my dad, Henry “Doc” Holliday. Our farm is located on the outskirts of the seaside village of Cape Willington in Down East Maine, and we’re in the process of getting it ready for the wedding—tidying up, setting up a reception tent, that sort of thing.
But we’ve run into a fatal snag. When Herr Georg’s best man, local historian Julius Seabury, fails to show up for the wedding rehearsal dinner, I have to go out looking for him. Unfortunately, when I find him, he’s lying face-down in the historical archives upstairs at the English Point Lighthouse and Museum. Much to my horror and surprise, he’s dead! Worse, he may or may not have been murdered, and the murder weapon may or may not be a bottle of champagne lying next to the body.
But here’s where it gets really crazy. The bottle of champagne found next to Julius’s body was ordered especially for their upcoming wedding by Herr Georg himself! That unleashes all kinds of questions. How did it get there? What was Julius doing up in those archives? Is Herr Georg himself involved in Julius’s death? And, most important, what will it mean for the upcoming wedding? No wonder a certain blueberry farmer finds it hard to sit back and do nothing!
I’ve vowed that I will not let anything or anyone stop my best friend’s wedding from taking place as planned. Julius wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. I am so certain he knew something was going to happen to him. I’m also certain he left clues in some of the books upstairs in the archives, which was one of Julius’s favorite places—possibly in the old books about the history of the village’s founding families. If you know anything about our village, you know that includes the Sykes and the Pruitt families, who have had an ongoing feud for a century and a half. You can guess how well things will go when those two families are involved!
So now I’ll have to go back to the historical society’s archives to snoop around a little. And yes, I’m terrified of being caught, since that place is off limits due to Julius’s death. But Maggie’s happiness is at stake, and the risk is worth it.
While I’m off snooping and questioning certain residents of Cape Willington, the barn at Blueberry Acres is being transformed into a wedding wonderland by Ralph Henry and Malcolm Randolph Stevens, owners of the Bird’s Nest Garden and Flower shop on Main Street. Their talent for decorating cannot be matched. Just wait ’til you see the place!
In just three day’s time, Maggie and Herr Georg will have the wedding of their dreams, with all of their friends and relatives celebrating with them at the farm. I just have a few things to solve before then, so for better or for worse, in fear or in bravery, here I go!
NOTE: Town in a Cinnamon Toast will be published on Feb. 2, 2016, by Berkeley Prime Crime, and available in both print and as an ebook. Other titles in the New York Times bestselling series include Town in a Sweet Pickle, Town in a Strawberry Swirl, Town in a Pumpkin Bash, Town in a Wild Moose Chase, Town in a Lobster Stew, and Town in a Blueberry Jam. Large print editions of the books and an audiobook of Town in a Blueberry Jam are also available. For more information on the series, visit http://www.hollidaysblueberryacres.com.