A chilly reception....
Caterer Goldy Schulz has been hired to host a hockey party. But the proceedings won't be all fun and games. Unfortunately, her client won't be satisfied until Goldy adds a hefty serving of revenge.
An ex-husband from hell....
Patricia McCracken is certain that her obstetrician and her penny-pinching HMO are responsible for the loss of her baby. Now she is suing both, and she wants Goldy's advice on coming out on top. For Dr. John Richard Korman, aka the Jerk, is none other than Goldy's abusive ex-husband. Goldy knows all about John Richard's secret life--but even she is shocked when he's arrested for the murder of his latest girlfriend.
A dish best served cold....
As much as Goldy would like to see her ex get his just desserts, could he really be a killer? Soon she will find herself sifting through a spicy mix of sizzling gossip for clues to a mystery that threatens her catering deadline, her relationship with her son and new husband... and even her life.
Goldy Schulz, owner of Goldilocks' Catering in Aspen Meadow, Colo., becomes involved in another mystery (after The Main Corpse, 1996) when her ex-husband, Dr. John Richard Korman, is arrested for the murder of his girlfriend, Suz Craig. Physically abused by John Richard during their marriage, Goldy has good reason to believe that the misogynistic obstetrician killed Suz, but she agrees to investigate other possible suspects for the sake of their vulnerable 14-year-old son, Arch. She discovers that Suz, regional v-p of an HMO that had recently bought out John Richard's medical practice, had the power to decide whether or not he would receive a $200,000 bonus, money he badly needed due to a pending malpractice suit being brought by the woman for whom Goldy is currently catering a major party. Goldy also learns that Suz was widely hated for her ruthless business tactics and vicious handling of personnel problems. Although the mystery suffers from slow pacing, little action and a contrived ending, Davidson has created a finely nuanced suburban world, warmly detailing Goldy's life with Arch and Tom, her protective policeman second husband, and Macguire, their long-suffering boarder. Goldy's menusthis time built around a hockey theme in celebration of the Colorado Avalanche's Stanley Cup victoryare smoothly folded into the mix. Major ad/promo; author tour. (Sept.)
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August 02, 1998
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Excerpt from The Grilling Season by Diane Mott Davidson
Getting revenge can kill you. If you want real revenge, you have to be willing to pay. Life is not like the movies. Unfortunately. With these happy thoughts, I measured out fudge cake batter into cupcake liners and slid the pan into the oven. I set the timer and reminded myself for the thousandth time that I'd let go of the need for revenge. I wasn't a hot-blooded teenager. I was a thirty-three-year-old caterer with a business to run and work to do. Half-past six on a cool August morning? What I needed was coffee. You never let go of the thirst for revenge. Yeah, well. Maybe hearing other people's sad stories sparked thoughts of my own. Or in this case I'd heard one unhappy story, one story needing justice. But what could I do for a client in emotional pain? I'd agreed to cater her hockey party. A nurse had told my client, Patricia McCracken, that hosting this sports celebration would distract her from her problems. But whenever we discussed the menu, Patricia didn't want to talk about vittles; she wanted to talk about vindication. And I was as unenthusiastic about jumping into her revenge fantasy as I was about washing dishes after a banquet. For six years, I'd run the only food-service business in the small mountain town of Aspen Meadow, Colorado. My son, Arch, was fourteen years old. Just over a year ago, I'd married for the second time. Add to this the fact that I'd already sought punishment for the scoundrel who'd recently wronged Patricia McCracken. I'd barely escaped with my life. I retrieved unsalted butter and extra-thick whipping cream from my walk-in refrigerator, then reached up to my cabinet shelves for aromatic Mexican vanilla and confectioner's sugar. Stay busy, I had advised Patricia. It'll help. Make your guest list. Plan your decorations. Some people despise slates of tasks and errands. But I revel in work. Work keeps my mind off weighty matters. Usually. Take this morning, for example. After finishing the cupcakes, I needed to check my other bookings, make sure our sick boarder was sleeping peacefully, then rush to pick up Arch from an overnight party. Before zipping back to my commercial-size kitchen in our small home, I was going to deliver Arch to the country-club residence of his can't-be-bothered father. My ex-husband, ob-gyn Dr. John Richard Korman, was the father--and scoundrel--in question. He was also the man my client Patricia McCracken obsessively hated. He was the man I had escaped from. He was known to his other ex-wife and me as the Jerk. Small example of Jerk behavior: Dr. John Richard Korman would no more pick up his son from an overnight than he would beat some eggs for breakfast. And careful of that word beat. I stared at the menu on my computer screen and struggled to refocus on the task at hand. After much hesitation, Patricia had finally decided that her party would be a two-month-late celebration of the Colorado Avalanche winning the Stanley Cup. But making the plans with her hadn't been easy. One week she didn't care about the menu; the next she obsessed about details, such as how long to grill fish. After many discussions, Patricia had finally ordered Mexican appetizers, gr