Saturday, January 3, 2015

Aloha to Laura Levine and THE DANGERS OF CANDY CANES (A Jaine Austen Mystery) - Book Review


One more holiday review before you pack up your holiday decorations - an outrageous novella from Laura Levine, the creator of Count Chocula, Frankenberry, and the Jaine Austen Mystery series ...

Included in the anthology, Candy Cane Murder, with Joanne Fluke and Leslie Meier.

When a wealthy suburbanite takes a lethal tumble off his roof while installing a giant candy cane, the roofing contractor being held responsible for murder asks freelance writer Jaine Austen to investigate. But solving this untimely holiday death means delving into the cutthroat Christmas decorating wars among scheming neighbors with dirty secrets in their stocking. It takes a fruitcake hiding a weapon and a stunning confrontation to expose the mastermind of this holiday murder.

File:Candy cane William B Steenberge Bangor NY 1844-1922.jpg
Promotional card by William B Steenberge
Public Domain (link)

We elves try to stick to the four main food groups: candy, candy canes, candy corns and syrup. - Buddy from ELF

Jaine Austen shares the same diet with the elves - candy canes and fast food fuels this freelance writer turned private detective in Los Angeles.   Her clients often ask her to write jingles for their small businesses ... and solve mysteries that pop up in their lives.   Levine deploys a cookie cutter plot (probably chocolate chip) that still delivers outrageous humor in this cozy mystery.   The story is told from Jaine's first person point of view, allowing Jaine to directly chat with the readers about her "off the record" perspective.  It is the creme de la creme (full of fat, of course) which sets Levine apart from other humor writers.  

Recommended read for fans of heroines who wear elastic waisted pants.

I purchased the anthology as I am a fan of the 12 books in the Jaine Austen series.

I am giving away a book choice from my convention stash (including several cozy mysteries) to one randomly selected commenter.  To enter the giveaway,

1.  Leave a comment about your favorite holiday candy - candy canes?  ginger bread?  something else?

2.  Comments are open through Saturday, January 11, 10 pm in Baltimore.

3.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, January 12.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Learn more about Laura, Jaine, and Prozac the cat at


  1. I don't think I have a favorite - I love all of it (unfortunately lol).

  2. I love them all...especially the candy with peppermint in it.

  3. I'll have to go with candy canes.

  4. I love anything chocolate. I usually buy chocolate truffles once a year around christmas time.

  5. Definitely candy canes, but I also make peppermint bark from scratch and my family LOVES it. :)

  6. I like Candy Canes and ribbon candy.

  7. Chocolate fudge for me - home made of course.

  8. Cinnamon cookies are my absolute favorite holiday treat!! Perfect woth a cup of Earl Grey tea :)

  9. Chocolate covered pretzels that look like reindeer! Even the Grinch would love them!


  10. I love Lindt & Ferraro Rocher!!!

  11. pretty much anything with dark chocolate - like candied orange rind dipped in dark chocolate

  12. Sadly, if it is candy - especially chocolate - I love it! :-D

  13. The candy cane Hershey Kisses are a favorite of mine.

  14. I only like chocolate candy, so it is chocolate covered espresso beans - totally addictive.

  15. I love all kinds of candy, chocolate, gumdrops. But really love chocolate covered nuts the best.

  16. My favorite holiday candy are chocolates. Chocolate truffles and chocolate covered nuts especially.

  17. I love the look of the candy canes, but for eating, decadent chocolate truffles.

  18. Christmas cookies!