Cheddar Off Dead (Cheese Shop Mysteries Book 1)

Korina Moss

St. Martin’s Press

March 29th, 2022

Cheddar Off Dead by Korina Moss is compelling.  It has all the ingredients for a cozy mystery with likeable characters, an intriguing plot, a quaint small town, and great food.  Besides the mystery, readers will get to know the characters, learn about other shops, and have their taste buds enhanced with the different cheeses.

“I wrote Willa’s life as based upon her love of cheese.  It helped her to get through hard times. It shows who she is and helps her make a connection to others.  Cheese has been her safety.  As she makes the different dishes with cheese, hopefully readers will love it.  Most of us just eat cheese and do not think beyond it.  I am loving hearing from readers that they have been opened to different cheese types and how it is made. It is a cool product. Cheese was literally involved in the murder.”

The main character Willa Bauer has opened Curds & Whey, a French-inspired cheese shop in the heart of the Sonoma Valley.  Going to this small town of Yarrow Glen is a fresh start for her after her heart is broken.  She has asked the local food critic, Guy Lippinger, to give a review, but becomes hesitant after discovering he only gives bad ones.  When Guy comes into the shop things go from bad to worse.  Shortly after leaving, she finds him in his car outside her shop, dead with one of Willa’s cheese knives.  To clear her and her shop’s names she starts investigating. Unfortunately, she is a prime suspect, but also is in the sights of a killer.

“Willa is driven, a little controlling, fiercely independent, and she thinks she knows more than she does. She is loyal and does not trust easily. She never waivers from her end goal, helping her shop. She sees it is not just about her but about all the community. Because of what happened between her best friend and her fiancé she became heartbroken. Coming to this new town she feels as if she can fit in. The small town is surrounded by mountains, in the glen of the Sonoma Valley. The town, Yarrow Glen, has dairy roots and dairy farming. This is not the first-place tourists come to.  It is just starting to bloom.  Many of the community people are either starting over or trying to get their footing.  They have each other’s backs. Each have their own idiosyncrasies, quirks, and secrets.”

This is a good start to a new series with many twists and turns.  Because of all the suspects it was hard to guess the killer.  Even if someone is lactose intolerant they will enjoy the book with vivid cheese descriptions, engaging characters, and a riveting mystery.



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About the Author

Elise Cooper

Elise writes book reviews that always include a short author interview.