Of Spice and Men By Sarah Fox: Review/Giveaway/Holiday Recipe

Dec 2, 2017 | 2017 Articles, Food Fun, Kathleen Costa, Mysteryrat's Maze

by Kathleen Costa
& Sarah Fox

This week we have a review of the latest Pancake House Mystery by Sarah Fox, Sarah also shares a fun holiday tradition and a holiday recipe. Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win an EBOOK copy of Of Spice and Men, along with a link to purchase it from Amazon.

Of Spice and Men: A Pancake House Mystery by Sarah Fox
Review by Kathleen Costa

Again, I was so excited to have the opportunity to read the newest release in Sarah Fox’s Pancake House Mystery series cleverly titled, Of Spice and Men, and totally entertained revisiting the well-developed and sometimes quirky characters (even the fur friends), and being absorbed in another engaging mystery. This time Sarah has a Hollywood-twist with a movie crew invading Wildwood Cove set to remake a cult favorite horror film. Everyone is all abuzz by the prospect of having their town being center stage and meeting the handsome Chase Lowman, and Marley McKinney, owner of The Flip Side, is overjoyed with the extra business from the cast and crew who find her crêpes delicious.

bookI greatly enjoy Sarah’s style of writing as her ‘twists’ come early when Marley is invited to the set, but finds the special-effects makeup artist Christine is a real-life victim of a trailer fire; the police are labeling it murder. Ok, it gets even better when Sarah adds some ‘turns’ with Marley discovering her boyfriend’s ex was the replacement lead in the film, Alyssa Jayde, who rivals any full-of-herself diva, and then, hold on, here it comes…the ex needs someone to clear her name from the ‘prime suspect’ list. Yeah! What an exciting start! Marley infiltrates the set, and we find curious visitors, tensions on set, jealousies, triangles, missing props, and threats overheard to “burn your whole career down to a pile of ashes!” All this and a well-written drama, a few giggles, a continuing romance, and a ‘What? No, watch out!’ ending. Then relax with the extra bonus of a delicious easy-to-follow recipes straight from The Flip Side kitchen: Pumpkin Waffles and a Basic Crêpes recipe including fillings for Pumpkin Crêpes and Apple Crêpes.

I join other fans and highly recommend this third book, but newbies need not shy away. They can leap right in without any issues. The backstory and character connections are revisited for clarity, but no spoilers are revealed just a few references to previous murder victims, investigations, and an occasional suspect and how it relates to the current predicaments. And everyone will enjoy the excellent descriptions of the town, the people, and the treats and realistic dialog that kept the pages turning. But don’t forget that there are two other books offering additional excitement and fun. Starting with “The Crêpes of Wrath” (2016) Marley investigates her Cousin Jimmy’s death, and in “For Whom the Bread Rolls” (2017) Marley is the number one suspect when a major ‘thorn in her side’ local nuisance ends up dead.

Of Spice and Men earns 5/5 Stacks of Pumpkin Crêpes…Murderously Fun!

Kathleen Costa is a long-time resident of the Central Valley, and although born in Idaho, she considers herself a “California Girl.” Graduating from CSU-Sacramento, she is a 35+ year veteran teacher having taught in grades 1-8 in schools from Sacramento to Los Angeles to Stockton to Lodi. Currently Kathleen is enjoying her retirement revitalizing hobbies along with exploring writing, reading for pleasure, and spending 24/7 with her husband.

Sarah Fox’s Favorite Holiday Traditions
by Sarah Fox

One of my favorite holiday traditions is baking delicious treats that we only get to enjoy at this time of year. In my family, we’ve always eaten homemade stolen for breakfast on Christmas Day and Boxing Day. It’s delicious! My favorite holiday treat, however, is gingerbread. My family’s gingerbread recipe came from my maternal grandmother, who was born in 1901 in Vancouver, Canada, and lived to the age of 100. She got the recipe from a neighbor back in the late 1920s, so it’s been used and enjoyed by my family for more than 80 years. I hope you will enjoy it too!


Sarah celebrating Christmas in 1982

Ginger Cookies

1 cup butter or ½ cup each of butter and margarine
1 cup sugar
1-1/2 cups molasses (table molasses is the best to use)


Sarah Fox and her English Springer Spaniel, Fergus

1/2 cup hot water
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 tablespoons ground ginger
6 cups flour
pinch of salt

In a mixing bowl, cream the butter, sugar, and molasses. Dissolve the baking soda in the hot water. Add the ginger and salt to the flour. To the butter mixture, gradually add the flour mixture alternately with the hot water. Mix until combined. Optional: chill the dough in the fridge for two hours. Roll out and cut into shapes. Bake at 350° for 8 to 10 minutes.

Be a Big Sarah Fox Fan!
Check out Kings River Life – For Whom the Bread Rolls

Sarah also penned the three-book Music Lover’s Mystery: Dead Ringer (2015), Death in A Minor (2016), and Deadly Overtures (2017). Sarah takes us into the world of the music with Midori Bishop who is living her dream with the Point Grey Philharmonic, but in this series she finds a not-so-well-liked cellist, dysfunctional families, and a music competition all seem to lead to murder. “I can name that murderer in five notes!”

Like, Visit, and Follow…Oh, my!
Facebook – Author Sarah Fox
Website – Cozy Crime with a Foxy Flair

To enter to win an EBOOK copy of Of Spice and Men, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “spice,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen December 9, 2017. U.S. residents only. If entering via email please include your mailing address, and if via comment please include your email address.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & short stories in our mystery section.

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

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. Love the title! Thanks for this opportunity!

  2. Ginger cookies are one of my favorite cookies to make during the holidays. I underbake them so they are a bit chewy, rather than crisp. This sounds like a great read and I love the book cover! Merry Christmas to All!

  3. Cute title! parkeremma2003 at yahoo dot com

  4. I’d love to read this–ty for the chance.

  5. My cookie baking sister does not like ginger, so I will need to do these for Mom and I.
    Thank you for the recipe!
    Beautiful springer…go Fergus.
    karen94066 at aol dot com

  6. This is a new series to me. Would like to read.

  7. I love this series. Thank you for the chance. pgenest57(at)aol(dot)com

  8. A new to me author! Thank you for the chance to win?


  9. This sounds like just a fun book to read, except being book crazy all are fun for me.

  10. We have a winner!


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