Fudge and Jury by Ellie Alexander

Setting: Ashland, Oregon; annual chocolate festival


  • Juliet “Jules” Capshaw: Pastry chef, narrator, and co-owner of Torte, a well-loved local bakery and cafe in Ashland
  • Helen Capshaw: Jules’ mother and co-owner of Torte
  • The Professor: Police chief detective and boyfriend of Helen
  • Thomas: Police detective, high school sweetheart of Jules
  • Andy, Sterling, and Stephanie: Members of the staff at Torte

Plot: The annual chocolate festival is a huge opportunity for Torte to expand their business. Everyone is busy making preparations. But the staff at Torte are also preparing for a renovation at the bakery. To say it’s a hectic time is saying the very least. Before the festival opens, more chaos ensues as a renown local chocolatier literally drops dead in front of Torte’s booth. The victim was well known but not well liked by any means. It appears as though his death resulted from tasting a tainted sample from one of the event’s vendors. Thomas and the Professor face the task of figuring out who among the crowd was aware of the victim’s nut allergy and had the motive to do him in.

Pacing: Steady

Predictability: Low

Wild Card: Fudge and Jury is a delectable mystery. As this series continues, I grow more and more enchanted with the world Ellie Alexander creates in Ashland. The characters feel like welcome friends and the stories are always peppered with mouth-watering descriptions of pastry and coffee, chocolates and meals. With and warmth fill each scene – truly tempting tales that are a delight to indulge in.

Hit, Miss, or Draw? Hit!

Welcome to Torte—a friendly, small-town family bakery where the pastries are delicious…and, now, suspicious.

It’s almost spring in Ashland, Oregon, and the town is preparing for the Shakespeare and the annual Chocolate Festival. Business is cookin’ at Torte, and the store is expanding as Jules’ team whips up crèpes filled with mascarpone cheese and dark chocolate. Torte stands a chance of being this year’s confectionery belle of the ball! Life couldn’t be sweeter—unless murder taints the batter.

Evan Rowe, of Confections Couture, makes a chocolate fountain that would put Willy Wonka to shame, and his truffles are to die for—literally? Yes, the world-renowned chocolatier has just turned up dead…right after sampling a slice of Jules’ decadent four-layer chocolate cake. Now all eyes are on Jules as she tries to find the mysterious ingredient in her own recipe. Can she sift out the truth before another contestant bites the buttercream?


8123142Ellie Alexander, author of the Bakeshop Mystery Series (St. Martin’s Press), is a Pacific Northwest native who spends ample time testing pastry recipes in her home kitchen or at one of the many famed coffeehouses nearby. When she’s not coated in flour, you’ll find her outside exploring hiking trails and trying to burn off calories consumed in the name of research.

The 6th book in the Bakeshop Mysteries, A CRIME OF PASSION FRUIT coming June 2017. And a new series debuts fall 2017 with DEATH ON TAP!

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One thought on “Fudge and Jury by Ellie Alexander

  1. Pingback: A Crime of Passion Fruit by Ellie Alexander – Live and breathe books.

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