Strawberried Alive By Jenn McKinlay: Review/Giveaway

May 21, 2022 | 2022 Articles, Cynthia Chow, Food Fun, Mysteryrat's Maze

by Cynthia Chow

Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy of the book and a cupcake bakery jar opener, and a link to purchase it from Amazon.

Until shots are fired at Fairy Tales Cupcake Bakery co-owner Melanie Cooper DeLaura, Mel thought her biggest headache would be refrosting hundreds of cupcakes to match the ever-changing mind of her bridezilla client. Honestly, after thirteen previous murder investigations, it’s a miracle that it’s taken this long for Mel to appear on someone’s hit list, be it from an unhappy client, envious rival baker, or the dozens of killers she and her assistant district attorney husband Joe have helped to put behind bars. While Mel is bunkered into a safehouse and saddled with unwanted bodyguard/cyber investigator Dwight Pickard, another local businesswoman closely resembling Mel is shot and taken out. As much as Joe would prefer to keep his new bride protected and out of danger, he knows that with her business and her friends in jeopardy, nothing will prevent Mel from investigating. A series of escalating attacks and deaths have the mayor and neighboring businesses directing blame towards Mel, and as a result, she and Fairy Tales Cupcake Bakery are canceled by their clients and customers.

Mel is fortunately never alone in her investigations, with her business partners and besties Angie and Tate now married themselves and more than enthusiastic about helping track down a killer. Angie’s seven older brothers, one of whom happens to be Mel’s own new hubby, toe the line on both sides of the law while protectively circling around their sister and sister-in-law. It doesn’t take long to discover that financial shenanigans are ensuing as struggling businesses fall deeper in debt to escalating payments they will never be able to make.

This fourteenth in the buoyantly fun series continues to make the lifetime friendships between Mel, Joe, Angie, and Tate feel so real and alive. They have been shown to grow as individuals, but the humorous banter, movie-related trivia competitions, and good-natured teasing have remained throughout into adulthood. Even Mel’s mother and her Uncle Stan have found love together, rounding out the couples who have discovered happiness in their Scottsdale, Arizona town. While Mel and her team expend a considerable amount of effort eliminating suspects and questioning victims’ friends, they still have enough time to craft unique pastry confections, including the title-inspired Strawberry Surprise Cupcake. The witty dialogue balances perfectly with the genuine threats facing Mel and her business, and a gather-up-the-suspects finale is surprising, thrilling, and very satisfying. Come for the delicious cupcakes and descriptions of mouth-watering baking, stay for the heartwarming moments and tangled web of a plot.

To enter to win a copy of Strawberried Alive, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “alive,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen May 28, 2022. U.S. residents only, and you must be 18 or older to enter. If you are entering via email please include you mailing address in case you win, it will be deleted after the contest. You can read our privacy statement here if you like.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. Also listen to our new mystery podcast where mystery short stories and first chapters are read by actors! They are also available on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, and Spotify. A new episode went up this week.

You can use this link to purchase the book. If you have ad blocker on you may not see the Amazon link. You can also click here to purchase the book.

Cynthia Chow is the branch manager of Kaneohe Public Library on the island of Oahu. She balances a librarian lifestyle of cardigans and hair buns with a passion for motorcycle riding and regrettable tattoos (sorry, Mom).

Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases. KRL also receives free copies of most of the books that it reviews, that are provided in exchange for an honest review of the book.


  1. Alive.

    • Thanks for the chance to win! I would live to read this, and enjoy seeing Scottsdale thru Jenn’s eyes. jeaniedannheim (at) ymail (dot) com

  2. I’ve followed this series since the beginning.
    Strawberries are in season – would be a good
    time to read this book. thanks

  3. Sounds interesting! Count me in!

  4. I love this series! Can’t wait to read “Strawberried Alive”.

  5. One of my very most favorite series and definitely a most favorite author! Looking forward to reading this one!

  6. I am so excited to read this now! I love this series so much, one of my favs.

  7. I have read and enjoyed. number of books by this author. I’d love to read Strawberried Alive also!

  8. I would love to read this book. Thank you for the chance. Lamonicaks(at)gmail(dot)com

  9. Congrats on your new release.

    Looks like a good read.

  10. We have a winner!


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.