by Kathleen Costa
Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a signed copy of Death of the Big Kahuna, and a link to purchase it from Amazon.
Alooooha! Welcome to the Aloha Lagoon Resort Mystery series…
Gemma Halliday Publishing has provided ‘cozy’ fanatics a marvelous multi-author book series. Each story, penned by several well-received authors, is set at the same tropical destination, Aloha Lagoon Resort, a resort where it seems murder has come to vacation.
In Death of the Big Kahuna, to escape a miserable situation back home in Vermont, follow her hunky reluctant boyfriend, and check off a destination from her ‘dream’ list, Carrie Jorgensen heads out to Hawaii, but she discovers finding a job and trying to save the relationship is not so easy. Through fortuitous events, being at the right place at the right time, she lands a waitressing job at the Loco Moco Café, part of the Aloha Lagoon Resort facilities on Kauai. The other employees and the head chef seem nice enough, but the owner Hale Akamu, dubbed the “Big Kahuna,” is very worrisome. His uncomfortable stares, boisterous manner, and questionable employee relationships, make getting THIS job a mixed blessing…very mixed, especially when Carrie happens upon the ‘Big Kahuna’ in the kitchen dead…a slice of pineapple stuffed in his mouth, a knife in his chest used to pin a note sporting big bold letters, “PIG!”
Carrie is devastated by her discovery and fears she may be considered a suspect. Isn’t that always how it works when you are the one to find the body? But, Keanu, the assistant manager of the restaurant, tries to calm her down. “Everyone I can think of had a reason to want Hale dead,” he said. This turns out to be true from harassed waitresses and underpaid chefs to a very angry wife scorned. The boyfriend is showing less and less interest, and then there is Detective Ray, dressed in his Hawaiian shirts and khaki pants, disorganized and suspicious, who didn’t even notice a key piece of evidence was unaccounted for. Carrie decides she needs to take life by the palm trees and figure it out on her own.
Carrie’s curiosity takes her throughout the resort and into the little nearby town. She uncovers betrayal, a tragic past, secrets, a key on the stairs, and more possible motives than the police could ever manage. The boyfriend may be more than an assumed jerk and true friendships may save Carrie from disaster. And then there is the missing evidence…could circumstantial circumstances make the new girl the perfect patsy for murder?
This book written by Catherine Bruns is the sixth in the Aloha Lagoon Mystery series, and it just may be my favorite. Catherine offers a clever bite from ‘Karma’ giving many of us, who have suffered working for an insufferable boss, a cathartic experience. The characters are well developed people you might just recognize as friends, family, or co-workers. Carrie is a bruised soul for whom you are sympathetic, and that keeps you engaged with her journey and relished in the strength she finds she didn’t have. Descriptions bring the humidity and the tropical aromas to life, and dialogue is as engaging as eavesdropping. This is a marvelous reading journey for its humor, suspense, and satisfying resolution.
If you can’t make it to Hawaii real soon, you can bring a little of it home. Catherine has provided a few Loco Moco treats: Poncho’s Pineapple Salsa, Pumpkin Roll, Pulled Pork, and Mai Tai cocktails. All you need for your family Luau!
Death of the Big Kahuna earns 5/5 Umbrella-ed Mai Tai Cocktails at a Beach Tiki Bar!
To enter to win either a signed copy of Death of the Big Kahuna, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “kahun,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen February 4 2017. U.S. residents only. If entering via email please include your mailing address, and if via comment please include your email address.
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Special Note: This Kindle version of this book is currently on sale on Amazon for .99! The author did not know how long that would last.
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