Crime & Clutter, Friday Afternoon Club Mystery Series #2   -     By: Cyndy Salzmann
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Crime & Clutter, Friday Afternoon Club Mystery Series #2

Howard Books / 2007 / Paperback

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Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 288
Vendor: Howard Books
Publication Date: 2007
Dimensions: 8.25 X 5.5 (inches)
ISBN: 1582296448
ISBN-13: 9781582296449

Publisher's Description

A storage unit, a 1963 Volkswagen minibus, and tattered letters...reveal shattering secrets from the '60s.

It's been a year since Mary Alice lost her father -- the father she never really knew. Now she's stuck cleaning out his rubbish from a storage unit. Just when she'd rather it all go away from her well-ordered life, her long-held secret is discovered by the feisty Marina, one of the six members of the Friday Afternoon Club. When these friends make it their mission to help Mary Alice tackle her stash, they arrive at the storage unit, prepared to clean. But what they discover takes them on a riotous ride through the crime and clutter of the sixties, the angst and betrayal of those caught in The Revolution, and the forgiveness that can only come through acceptance of a different kind of Cause.

Includes fun, easy, and tantalizing recipes!

Author Bio

Cindy Salzmann is a wife and mother who does much of her writing on the back of fast food wrappers -- usually while waiting to pick up her children. Desperate for an excuse to avoid laundry, she has written three Christian nonfiction books, launched a national speaking career, and taught her children how to sort colors. Dying to Decorate is her first novel and first book of the Friday Afternoon Club Mystery series. Cyndy and her family live in Omaha, Nebraska.

Library Journal

The Friday Afternoon Club is made up of six midlife mothers who retreat from children, jobs, and busy schedules on Friday afternoons to devote themselves to chocolate, chat, and good times. When Mary Alice is forced to face the difficult memories of her father's abandonment when she was a baby, her friends rally around to help Mary Alice to resolve her family's long-buried secrets. Likable characters and vivid 1960s flashbacks of politically charged events take readers on a great ride. A combinaton of high-spirited mom lit and cozy mystery (complete with recipes for Homemade Twinkies and Coffee Can Bread), this second "Friday Afternooon Club" title (after Dying To Decorate) is recommended for collections where women's fiction and light mysteries are popular. Salzmann lives in Nebraska. Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.

Chronicling the events of life in the Friday Afternoon Club, especially those in the life of Mary Alice who happens to be keeping a secret from her friends, Crime & Clutter is the second installment in Cyndy Salzmann's series of mysteries, and follows suit according to its predecessor. When Mary Alice's friends find that her missing father has left a 1963 VW minibus behind, they search it for clues, and try to deal with the ensuing confrontation with counterculture.
With slow, careful development of plot, and characters reminiscent of the authors of the Sweet Potato Queens series, Salzmann wins the hearts and laughs of women who read Crime & Clutter. By far, what stands out about Salzmann's book is the interspersing of recipes that tantalize the palette of her readers, while drawing them into the story at every turn.
Salzmann's readers will surely empathize with Mary Alice, who is forced to face some difficult clues regarding the life of her father, and also with her friends in the Friday Afternoon Club, who want to get to the bottom of things, but also help their friend. Previously willing to put her questions on hold, Mary Alice is brought on the ride of her life by the other members of the Friday Afternoon Club, who take her on a trip for the truth.
Crime & Clutter is full of vivid, realistic characters who have flaws and freely acknowledge them. Mary Alice, the dynamic domestic diva, is no exception. Readers of Cyndy Salzmann's first Friday Afternoon Club mystery, Dying to Decorate, will appreciate and enjoy this second installment in her mystery series. Salzmann's amusing return to the world of women attempting to balance intrigue with interior management will surely please wives and mothers everywhere who can appreciate a good mystery and enjoy laughing along the way. – Meg Tepfer, Christian Book

Editorial Reviews

"Good friends, good eats, and a juicy mystery!" -- Susan May Warren, Author
"Laugh-out-loud humor -- and recipes to die for! Cyndy Salzmann serves up delightful contemporary characters and a page-turning mystery that will make you want to pull out your bell-bottoms and tuck a flower behind your ear. Highly recommended." -- Allison Bottke, Founder, God Allows U-Turns; Author, A Stitch in Time
"It's time to rejoin the ladies of the Friday Afternoon Club for more fun, friendship, and food. Once again, Cyndy Salzmann has penned a tale that will make you long for a Friday Afternoon Club of your very own. Forget the laundry, find your stash of chocolates, and escape with the lovable members of the FAC. You'll be glad you did!" -- Judith Miller, Author, In the Company of Secrets and the Freedom's Path series
"Clever, thoughtful, humorous, and more, Crime & Clutter is one book you don't want to miss! My heart broke for the cost of poorly made choices and rejoiced for the redemptive power of forgiveness." -- Gayle Roper, Author, Caught in the Middle, Caught in the Act, Caught in a Bind, Caught Redhanded
"Cyndy's books are not only fun, they're delicious! I devour the humor, and the recipes are nothing less than a waistline felony!" Lori Copeland -- Author, Yellow Rose Bride

Product Reviews

4.9 Stars Out Of 5
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  1. 4 Stars Out Of 5
    May 17, 2008
    "Crime and Clutter" by Cyndy Salzmann is loaded with great recipes for everything from air freshener to sparkling juice to Mexican delights. I can't wait to make the Fruit Cocktail Cake! The recipes relate directly to what the characters in the story are doing/eating at the time. The story of Mary Alice's inheritance of a 1963 Volkswagon Minibus develops a bit slowly, but the characters are diverse and likable. Cyndy beautifully takes the reader from present to past and back again, weaving a story that keeps you interested by not revealing too much too soon. This was a very "hip" trip back to the `60s. I will definitely read this talented author's other work.
  2. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    February 7, 2008
    Michelle Stahnke
    Absolutely wonderful. Cyndy Slazmann is a wonderful writer. Her book will keep you hooked till the last page. Plan plenty of time, you will not want to put it down.
  3. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    October 29, 2007
    Jill Stanish
    Crime & Clutter was a wonderful diversion from looking at my own clutter. Ms. Salzmann crafts an entertaining story, skillfully weaving a tale of today as well as the past. It gives the reader food for thought in facing the realities of a past they might prefer to ignore. You'll laugh, cry and have some great new recipes to try!
  4. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    October 8, 2007
    Cathy Elliott
    I so enjoyed reading Cyndys cozy mystery, CRIME & CLUTTER, the second in the series. The first one was really a great read, and this one was even better. She did a great job of bringing the sixties to life. Denny and Alis story was compellingthough at first, I didnt want to leave the present day setting with the Friday Afternoon Club friends. But once I was introduced to Denny and Ali, I HAD to see what was happening in the commune! The writing was creative, sprinkled with Salzmanns sense of humor, and lovely phrases like fragile tendrils of dust that made me wish Id written them myself. Add in an abundance of tantalizing recipes and you have a treasure that is delicious in every way.
  5. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    July 24, 2007
    The 60s is my absolute favorite decade. I love the culture of that time period especially the music. I would have killed to be alive when the Beatles were popular. So when I heard about the premise for this story, I was excited to read it. And I was not disappointed. This story will give Baby Boomers and fans of the decade a time capsule of the events that happened. From the Beatnik years to the Summer of Love, the story reminds you of Forrest Gump as you happen to be in all the important events of the time. I really liked the articles that would appear at the beginning of the flashback chapters. They helped to make the story seem more real and place you during that time period. I thought it was interesting that the 60s was picked because, even though I think of it as history, in the literary world it is still modern time period. I really liked the chapters set during the Democratic National Convention. It's an even that gets skimmed over during high school history class so I was pleased to read about it from the protester point of view. The story of Mary Alice and her father was sad to read, having to learn to forgive. Very touching and moving. And then there are the recipes. My gosh, I could have gained a pound just from reading them. They all sound soooo good. I can't wait to try out some of them. They all look really easy to make with nothing too fancy so that anyone can cook them. So don't read this book on an empty stomach because after a few pages I guarantee you'll be raiding your fridge! The only complaint I have about the book is that with only one POV telling the story and so many women in the group, I feel like I haven't gotten to know some of the characters that well yet. Hopefully that will change in the upcoming books. Can't wait for them!
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