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Customer Reviews for Abingdon Press Cooking the Books

Abingdon Press Cooking the Books

After her mother dies, Sloane Templeton leaves the Cyber Crime Unit to take over her mom's bookstore. Her batty store manager and the Granny Oakleys Book Club keep life fun---until she receives cyber threats and discovers her mom didn't die of natural causes! Can she use her computer skills to discover what really happened to her mother?
Average Customer Rating:
4.518 out of 5
4.5
 out of 
5
(27 Reviews) 27
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5 stars
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26 out of 2796%customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Customer Reviews for Cooking the Books
Review 1 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5

This book didn't appeal to me personally

Date:May 28, 2013
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Anne
Location:BC, Canada
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Value: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
This book wouldn't be a favourite. Didn't finish it. The writing style didn't appeal to me.
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Review 2 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5

Disappointed

Date:March 16, 2013
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CurledUpWithaBook
Location:The Maritimes
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Value: 
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Not my type of book. I had to push myself to keep reading and as the book went on I found most incidents quite unbelievable. I also didn't see the main character showing signs of being a Christian although near the end she did send up some emergency prayers.
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Review 3 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Highly enjoyable cozy mystery

Date:November 27, 2012
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Bonnie Calhoun writes a delightful novel filled with real people and real life. Sloane Templeton has inherited a book store with a zany manager. Calhoun's characters are a hoot! An example: the group of wacky senior citizens that meets in her bookstore but they don't read the books. When Sloane receives life-threatening messages on her computer the police become involved and Sloane tries to keep the incident a secret, which is impossible. With each page you wonder what will happen next to complicate Sloane's life. Calhoun writes thick tension but breaks it up with her lovable characters and their zany ways. The reader knows the criminal threat is dangerous, but enough laugh out loud moments keep the story from dragging. There is no sagging middle to this story. Highly recommended.
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Review 4 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Fun Read

Date:November 26, 2012
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Cheri Cowell
Location:Orlando, FL
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Fun book to read as it infuses humor while weaving a tale of mystery and self-discovery. The author uses interesting character self-talk to provide insight to the main character’s, Sloane, mindset at tense moments in the book. While some might view these self-talk segments as somewhat snarky, I found them to be an amusing take on what and how most people surely think to themselves on a daily basis. The references to red velvet cake also had me laughing as I completely identified with indulging in the wonderful treat and always finding ways or occasions to do so!
Just when you think you’ve figured out who is behind all the threats in Sloane’s life, the author throws in another twist or comment from a supporting character that has you guessing again until the end.
Overall a good book written with self-discovery, faith, suspense and the importance of love and support of family and friends.
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Review 5 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Awesome Debut Thriller

Date:June 15, 2012
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ibjoy1953
Location:Virginia
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
MY THOUGHTS ON THIS BOOK
Sloane Templeton didn’t ask for all that was happening to her, but she had no choice but the accept it! Taking over Beckham’s Books and Brew after her moms death brought on some strange people in Sloane’s life. The store manager and the Granny Oakleys Book Club group was enough to deal with without having to eat Aunt Verline’s cooking, if that’s what you can call what she presented as food!
In the first part of “Cooking the Books we also get to meet Sloane’s ex-boyfriend Trey, and there are reasons he is an ex. Also her new friend and attraction, the Greek boy Andreas Comino, which Trey is not happy about at all. And throughout the book we get to meet even more interesting and colorful character that were so well created by the author.
Even though this is a debut novel, you will think Bonnie Calhoun has been writing books for a long time. Along with her wonderful and fun loving characters, well most of them, there is so much happening in this story and there are so many twists and turns you never know what is coming next.
What makes this book so enjoyable for me is the way Bonnie inter-twines; the taking over a new business, grieving over a mom, inheriting quirky characters, a jerk ex-husband and an even bigger jerk ex-boyfriend, someone trying to kill you, and adds in a little romance, mystery, a feisty FiFi and, an aunt that can’t cook, and writes a story that will make you laugh, sometimes cry, and fall in love with Sloane as if she is your own daughter. It takes a good writer to have so much going on in a book and pull it all together and make it enjoyable.
I highly recommend this book for you to read and enjoy. Run out and grab a copy, get a cup of Java and sit down for a nice, enjoyable, relaxing read with Sloane Templeton and “Cooking the Books”
I want to thank Abingdon Press and Bonnie Calhoun for providing me a copy of this book. I have heard that Bonnie’s dream is to be an author, and I am so happy that she has fulfilled that dream. I look forward to many more books from Bonnie in the future. As much as Bonnie does with Christian Fiction Blog Alliance, Christian Fiction Online Magazine and all of the other things she does for the authors, readers and world of Christian fiction, it is an honor to be one of the reviewers for her debut novel.
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Review 6 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

A Fun Mystery

Date:June 6, 2012
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PatWKirk
Location:Kansas
Gender:female
Sloane runs the bookstore, Beckham’s Books & Brews, specializing in antique books, left to her by her mother. Fifi, business manager, and her pistol-packin’ group, the Granny Oakleys, ably assist her. Two men want one book in particular. Each is angry that the other knows about it. Meanwhile, Trey, well-muscled example of Sloane’s bad taste in men, terrorizes her. Though she said goodbye, he still considers her his woman. But she has Andreas. She doesn’t understand why her mother didn’t like him. Fifi also dislikes him.
Aunt Verlene, worst chef in history, constantly commandeers Sloane for food tests. One day, while Sloane tries not to eat Verlene’s latest culinary delight, they find a cookbook by a famous chef with a wealth-building recipe formerly believed lost. Verlene, sworn to silence, only tells her beauty shop early in the morning. Working girls use it then. Would they mention it to their boyfriends?
Meanwhile the manager of the real-estate company Rob Landry works for instructs him to play dirty to get Sloane to sell the bookstore.
Cooking the Books delivers constant suspense well mixed with eccentric characters and humor. I enjoyed it.
I received this book from NetGalley. It is an honest review.
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Review 7 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Fun first-person detective story

Date:June 3, 2012
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Cara Putman
Location:Indiana
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Sloane Templeton's life was chaos. Her mom's died, she's running a business she doesn't want, and she longs to get back to computer forensics. Instead, she's trying to avoid a bad, old boyfriend while maintaining a relationship with the Greek doctor down the street. She's got her aunt's cooking to avoid, her colleague's group of shooting old timers, and thugs all around.
Bonnie Calhoun's debut novel sings with personality. Sloane's voice is strong and sassy with an edge of sarcasm. She's trying to find herself in her new reality while staying alive. There are moments of poignancy laced with sheer lunacy. This book is perfect for people who enjoy first-person detective novels where the mystery involves a non-professional. Sloane has the skills she needs to solve the murder, but doesn't realize it. The book is a romp with a thread of serious undertones. The faith element is woven in carefully, adding to the story without distracting from the action.
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Review 8 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Fun light reading

Date:July 7, 2012
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PiperClassique
Location:France
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
An enjoyable light read, not great literature but pleasant escapism.
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Review 9 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

gripping and funny

Date:April 20, 2012
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wonderwheel
Location:Mentor, Ohio
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
I loved this book. I love the fact that I am emotionally attached to Sloane - I want her to get her hearts desire.
The fact that Bonnie can in even one paragraph make you laugh out loud and have that element of drama is to me intriguing writing.
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Review 10 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Great Christian Mystery

Date:April 18, 2012
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MaureenT
Location:Syracuse NY
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Once I picked up this captivating book, I could not put it down! It grabs you and compels you to keep reading.
Sloane Templeton has lost her Mom, and now has taken over running her Bookstore, along with Fifi her Mom's partner [another Colorful Character]. She has also begun a new relationship with a Greek Doctor..Andreas, having left a bad relationship with Trey [who doesn't seem to understand it is over!]
This story has it all, death threats and threatening messages, along with in person threats by people wanting her Mom's property. Also we meet delightful Aunt Verlene...the local Chef...who can't cook, and has regular visits from the fire department! There are also the Senior Group...at the gun range no less.
Add a very valuable antique book, and a couple of archaeological desperately wanting it!
I so enjoyed the subtle humor and the catchy phrases like "Fifi Andretti" or "Play Deputy Dawg", and "Red Velvet Hips".....are great and give you some chuckles. Also the nail biting end will keep you riveted! Enjoy!!
I received this book from Netgalley and the Publisher Abingdon Press. and was not required to give a positive review.
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Review 11 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Sloane Templeton is a great new character!

Date:April 10, 2012
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Janna Ryan
Location:North Platte, NE
Age:35-44
Gender:female
This book is so much fun! It has a fast paced scenario backed by a fun, quirky leading lady who is full of flaws which just makes her fun to root for. Somehow she has ended up at danger's door, or rather danger has come knocking at hers - she just isn't sure why or who is behind it all. The unexpected death of her mom a few months ago has left her to run the bookstore/coffee shop that her mom had owned... but she really knows nothing about books and doesn't really care for them. She is grieving, trying to move on romantically from a failed, abusive relationship (but he won't take a hint) and now her life is in danger. What more could go wrong? Well, Sloane Templeton is about to find out! There were a few things that I felt got wrapped up really quick at the end when I thought they would unravel just a little slower, but overall this was just a fun book with a fun main character that I hope to see more of!
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Review 12 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

A debut you won't want to miss!

Date:April 9, 2012
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Loren McGhee
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
When I learned that Bonnie Calhoun had released her debut novel and I had the privilege to review it, I was so excited! I have reviewed for Christian Fiction Blog Alliance under Bonnie's leadership for a few years now and can't say enough about Mrs. Bonnie. She keeps me laughing whether it's an email, or her hilarious Facebook posts! I KNEW her book was going to be nothing short of wonderful... and I was RIGHT ON!
COOKING THE BOOKS is fabulous, funny, and filled with just the right amount of suspense! The mystery will keep you wondering and you will love each character from Sloane, her Aunt Verlene, her Greek boy-friend, Andreas, and all those who visit the bookstore. I highly recommend Cooking the Books! I CANNOT wait to read Bonnie's next book! I can tell she will definitely be one of my favorite authors for sure!
Thank you Bonnie! You did good my friend! Sooo Good!
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Review 13 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Author has WONDERFUL start/book READ THIS ONE!!!!

Date:April 9, 2012
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CKeen
Location:Alabama
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Cooking The Books is by Bonnie S. Calhoun.
I was super excited to see a book in print by her, and looked forward to its arrival all last month! Why? { I am so glad you asked, I will try to keep this part short.}I wouldn't even have a blog if it weren't for Bonnie. I had never considered having my own blog, it just had not crossed my mind. The "Book Reviewer CFBA" logo - every post you see with that logo on it is because Bonnie Calhoun has worked it out to have it offered it to us for review. The CFBA group has opened many new doors for me and I am so grateful and thankful for that every day! I am thrilled to see someone else's dreams and goals coming to life, and to get to be a little part of that. That is what readers do, and what reviewers get to do. So now you HAVE to check out this book!
Cooking The Books features Sloane Templeton. Sloane's mother has passed, leaving her running a book store that she isn't sure what to do about. She lives in the building that is part of the book store, as did her mother. That both helps and complicates matters in various ways. Sloane knows next to nothing about running a book store. Before her mother died she was rather happy in the Cyber Crimes Unit at her former job. Now it seems her whole world is unraveling at a very fast pace.
It's hard enough just to get her hair done in a righteous style while avoiding too much red velvet cake, much less trying to keep track of her Aunt Verline so she doesn't blow up herself or her home. Aunt Verline fancies herself as skilled as Julie Childs, but her dishes tend to make Sloane feel like she headed for the hospital, or maybe Fear Factor. But what else is one suppose to do with kin folk who need you?
If that isn't enough to cope with, Sloane has a few unresolved past issues. An ex-husband, and ex-boyfriend, and a current boyfriend for starters. She has strange viruses or pop-ups taking over the store's computer as well. She has a lady who is in serious trouble from more than once source coming to the store almost daily, and Sloane has her mother's best friend Fifi helping her run the store as well. Dealing with what she is going through and what she has been through, Sloane has to decide where God still fits in her life. It isn't like she threw him away, just that things haven't been o.k. since her Mother died and her life began falling apart.
Sloane soon finds herself in the middle of some major danger, adventure, and comedy as well all because of two books. Both of these books hold secrets, and secrets can bring danger. Sloane is going to need all the help she can get (and lots of answers) to make it through this and discover the truth behind the mysteries.
Cooking The Books has plenty of humor, scarcasim, and just plain life in it. It does leave several questions unanswered at the end. However, unlike some other books where you want to yell because you were left so rudely hanging, Cooking The Books just has you waiting for the next book to find out the answers that were left waiting to be solved.
I am thrilled to read this new series, and I think that you will be as well!
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Review 14 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Cookin' the books

Date:April 4, 2012
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Winnie
Age:25-34
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
As a mystery/suspense lover, I’m always trying to find a new off-the-cuff type of book that deviates from my normal long list of reads. I like variety, and with Bonnie s. Calhoun’s new release of Cooking the Books, I got just that.
Sloane Templeton has had her fair share of missteps in her life. Now she’s taken on her recently passed mother’s book store and she’s not so sure this is what she really wants. One thing is for sure, she ain’t letting no money-grubbing realty company steal away the place she calls home. And now the dirt has hit the fan.
Warding off threats to herself, her crazy aunt, and a a few men, Sloane keys up her computer forensic skills and tracks down a killer.
A great cast of characters, main and secondary. Bonnie’s trademark snark comes through clear, and gives the story the right punch. Chuck-full of twists and action, Bonnie takes the mystery/suspense genre to a new level. Sloane has found a place among the bookshelf of kickin’ heroines.
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Review 15 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Sloane Templeton is a heroine for the rest of us

Date:April 2, 2012
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Anonymous
Location:Oconto Falls, WI
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Cooking the Books by Bonnie Calhoun is the first book in the Sloane Templeton series about a thirty-something divorcee with far too much on her plate. Sloane is still recovering from the unexpected death of her mother, Camille, who ran Beckam's Brew & Books, a bookstore known for its great coffee and even better selection of books. Unfortunately, Sloane's heart isn't in selling books; she misses her time working with a cyber-crime unit at NYU that she had to give up after her nasty divorce from a man who shall remain unnamed. In the midst of her new romance with hottie Andreas, comes cyber-threats on the shop's computers, word that her mother's last big purchase may be worth a million dollars, and a realty group is playing dirty trying to get Sloane to sell the building. Calhoun's Sloane is nothing like the usual detective. She is not calm, cool, or collected; nor is she glamorous and thin. Sloane loves her Red Velvet cake so much that she abandoned her jeans months ago and is known to lose her cool on a nearly minute to minute basis. So much so, that it's a bit frightening to know that she's packing heat! Sloane is the perfect heroine for the rest of us, who would be terrified of pointing a gun at another person, wouldn't know the first thing about solving a mystery, and whose taste in men isn't exactly noteworthy. Sloane's antics made me laugh, gasp with fear, and by the end, feel like this was a good friend I was sad to leave. I love how Calhoun has layered a long-arcing story over the other smaller stories in this first volume, and I pray (please God!) that she gets to tell the rest of the tale!
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Review 16 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

A great new debut novel!

Date:April 2, 2012
Customer Avatar
Heart2Heart
Location:Victorville, CA
Age:45-54
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
It's truly a honor and a delight when you are asked to review an author's debut novel as I was in the case of Cooking The Books by Bonnie Calhoun. I've had the pleasure of working with her through Christian Fiction Blog Alliance of which she is the Owner and Director of a 200+ blog members that host twice weekly blog tours for Christian fiction. She is also the Owner/Publisher of Christian Fiction Online Magazine (CFOM), a three-year-old, 50+ page Ezine with columns and articles by the best and brightest authors in Christian fiction. So she truly does an amazing job at knowing what readers and fellow authors look for when choosing a wonderful book.
In Cooking The Books, we are introduced to some quirky characters of which my favorite is Aunt Verlene, whose passion is cooking even though most of her dishes turn out to be less than favorable, but she truly does possess a love for what she does and often times bribes Sloane Templeton, her niece to a taste test.
Sloane herself is a former employee at the Cyber Crimes Unit and is now a beloved bookstore owner whose own passion is not selling her bookstore even though Coltrane Realty has made an enticing offer of three times the buildings worth. To Sloane, Coltrane just wants to buy all the buildings on the block to level it and build a new high rise. However what Sloane doesn't understand is that Rob Landry isn't about to report back to his company that she isn't willing to sell. Coltrane Realty will stop at nothing to ensure that they acquire all the buildings even if it means resorting to less than honest means to do it.
I received Cooking the Books by Bonnie Calhoun compliments of Christian Fiction Blog Alliance for my honest review and have to say I LOVED it! Bonnie creates such wonderful and likeable characters you feel like you know them personally. From the book club of aging seniors that meets at her bookstore that never reads the books to Sloane herself that will intervene in a crisis situation just because it's the right thing to do. I rate this book a 5 out of 5 stars and for those of you that love a good mystery with a twist alongside an interesting cast of characters, then this one is for you.
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Review 17 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Fun Read

Date:April 2, 2012
Customer Avatar
Sally
Location:Tampa, FL
What a fun read! The protagonist, quirky Sloane Templeton, who just inherited her mom's bookstore, has a snappy answer for everything. I love the dialogue! Unfortunately, Sloane makes bad decisions when choosing men. With one divorce under her belt, she next aligns herself with an abuser. Leaving him, she connects with Dr. Andreas Comino, a perfect guy, but her mother did not like him.
The novel contains: an elderly book club group who never read, but do take their guns to a shooting range; real estate agents harassing Sloane to sell; two doctors vying for a rare book; email death threats; and a foul smelling UPS package containing a dead rat.
This is a fast paced novel that had me smiling and gasping as I read.
I'm looking forward to the next installment of Sloane Templeton. I hope she sees more of the Denzel Washington clone, Detective Griffen Justice who has "a voice as smooth as Godiva chocolate."
Thank you to Bonnie at Christian Fiction Blog Alliance and Abingdon Press for my copy.
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Review 18 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Promising new mystery series

Date:April 1, 2012
Customer Avatar
Millstreetreader
Age:55-65
Gender:female
Quality: 
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Sloane Templeton is not comfortable in her new role New York City antique bookstore owner. And she is sure that the IT skills honed in her previous career in the Cyber Crimes Unit are quickly becoming outdated, but she can’t just walk away from the store that her recently deceased mother worked so hard to make successful. Cooking the Books by Bonnie S. Calhoun is billed as book one in the new Sloane Templeton series. Since successful mystery series are built on a relationship between reader and sleuth, it was necessary to supply sufficient background knowledge to hook the reader and to lay a “past” for Sloane which will accompany her into future books.
Readers will find in Sloane, a devoted daughter who feels an obligation to keep her mother’s dream alive, and a smart woman who is knowledgeable about technology, but not so interested in books. She also has the unfortunate and dangerous habit of being charmed into relationships with losers and even abusive men. The mystery of the premier novel revolves around two books, one, a cookbook with a hidden secret, and the other, an ancient title, possibly worth millions. Add in two dangerous boyfriends, a neighborhood book club who pack guns, a strange woman who appears homeless, and a couple wannabe gang members, and Sloane and the reader will face plenty of dangerous action. But like most popular mysteries, Cooking the Books offers moments of comic relief. Most often such moments come from Templeton’s aunt who sees herself as the next Food Network Star, but instead keeps the fire department busy. Most of the faith elements woven through the book come from references to her mother’s faith. In future books, I would hope to see Templeton’s own faith affect her actions and interactions with others. And let’s pray that she loses the bad boy attraction!
Most books that I have read with “bookstore” settings have been in quaint little towns, complete with small town charm and viewpoints. This book offers the big city and a black heroine struggling again big city thugs. That was a definite change in setting and viewpoint for this reader, but an interesting change. I felt the ending left some important ends “untied” despite my knowledge that there will be a second book which obviously will take up where this story ends. Bonnie S. Calhoun has the basic elements for a mystery series in place. If she provides readers with challenging mysteries and believable villains, she and Sloane Templeton will be successful.
I was provided a prepublication copy of this book for review purposes. Opinions are my own.
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Review 19 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Excellent Debut

Date:April 1, 2012
Customer Avatar
Iola
Location:New Zealand
Age:35-44
Gender:female
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Value: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Sloane Templeton has it all - a successful business, a handsome Greek boyfriend and a solid relationship with God. Well, she owns a bookshop but really wants to work in computer forensics. No one except her likes her Greek boyfriend (significant other?), and God seems to be out to lunch some days. Not only has she inherited Beckhams Books & Brews and its offbeat manager from her mother, but she has also acquired a rare book that could be worth a lot of money – if she lives to see it. She is receiving cyber-threats but initially dismisses them as pranks, until the FedEx pack with the dead rat arrives. Then it becomes apparent that someone means to harm her if she doesn't obey - but obey what?
So begins a merry chase featuring two mysterious and valuable books, two violent exes, a bookclub called the Granny Oakleys who don’t seem to read any books, and a real estate agent who may or may not be working on the right side of the law. While most of the story is told by Sloane, there are scenes in the third person providing some background information and suspense. Sloane has a distinctive and engaging voice Sloane has a wicked sense of humour, which was one of the best aspects of Cooking the Books. She comments that her ex-husband tried to divorce her by way of the cemetery, her aunt is from the shallow end of the gene pool and when her uncle died of food poisoning, the coroner was careful to point out that the food poisoning was not the result of her aunt's cooking (which is apparently legendary, and not in a good way).
While Sloane is spunky, funny and generally likeable, she has poor taste in men and a tendency to try and do things herself rather than asking for help. This is not always wise and is occasionally annoying - independence is not a positive trait when being stalked by a violent ex. Call 911, for goodness sake!
As with many current books there are a series of discussion questions at the end. The fact that Sloane is a flawed character who has made a lot of mistakes means that these are more thought provoking than most. If you are looking for a light-hearted mystery with a cast of slightly suspicious characters (and a handful who are more for comic relief), then you will enjoy Cooking the Books.
Thanks to Abingdon Press and NetGalley for providing a free ebook for review.
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Review 20 for Cooking the Books
Overall Rating: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Cooking the Books

Date:March 26, 2012
Customer Avatar
Deborah Anderson
Age:45-54
Quality: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Meets Expectations: 
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
It’s not easy being Sloane Templeton. Whenever something comes up that’s considered dangerous or reckless, Sloane’s name is usually attached somewhere.
Poor Sloane. Can you imagine?
Even Sloane’s mother, God rest her soul, always told her, “Fools rush in where angels dare to tread.”
Well, Sloane is sure the angels must practice running for the clouds every time her name turns up as an assignment, especially these days.
After her mother’s death, Sloane goes from Cyber Crimes Unit to bookstore owner before she can blink. Beckham’s Books & Brew, located in a crime-ridden area of New York, isn’t all she obtains as an inheritance. She also receives possession of her mother’s .38.
How will she carry herself like her fearless mother, brandishing a weapon, when she’s never held anything more deadly than nail clippers?
Well, she’s about to find out.
Saints, give her strength!
As Sloane's on her way to work one morning, she hears a woman’s screech echo from the interior of a car. Just as she pulls the .38 from her pants, the thumb hammer snags on top of her pocket, flipping the weapon out of her shaky hand.
Run, angels, run.
Much to her relief, the woman isn’t hurt. Sloane invites her to come to the bookstore, where she finds out the stranger’s name is Barbara Nelson. Barbara informs Sloane that she’s been watching her—every day. What’s up with that?
Rob Landry also shows up at the store, pestering Sloane to sell the business. Although Sloane doesn’t like being a bookseller, she likes even less the idea of selling him the building she’s grown up in. It’s the only home she’s known for most of her thirty-five years of life.
Men.
At least her ex-husband, who kept trying to divorce her by way of Shady Grove Cemetery—most likely in a cardboard box, mind you—the man probably wouldn’t even spring for pine—is out of her life.
Why do men behaving badly seem to gravitate to Sloane like insects to grease?
Andreas, however, is different. After meeting him at a Neighborhood Concerned Citizen meeting, and to the complete ticked-off dismay of her ex-boyfriend, Trey Alexander, she and Andreas become an instant item.
Now that Sloane has a good man in her life, everything should be okay, right?
Wrong.
Two doctors begin inquiring about a rare book in her store. One of the physicians tells her that her life could be in danger if it’s widely known that Sloane has physical possession of the book—worth one million dollars.
Soon after, Sloane starts receiving threats via emails on her computer. She uses her computer forensic skills to find out the source of the threats and discovers someone is out to kill her.
Could things get any worse?
Detective Griffen Justice shows up, determined to find out who wants her dead, and he doesn’t want Sloane in the way. But his voice, smooth as Godiva chocolate, intrigues her.
The angels sure have their work cut out for them on this assignment.
I absolutely loved this book. Who doesn’t love a good mystery? The added humor, though, not to mention the cast of well-crafted characters, definitely makes this one a keeper. You won’t be disappointed.
I highly recommend Cooking the Books.
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