Bake, Borrow, and Steal By Ellie Alexander

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Bake, Borrow, and Steal: A Bakeshop Mystery By Ellie Alexander


Book/Novel Author: Ellie Alexander

Book/Novel Title: Bake, Borrow, and Steal



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Ellie Alexander’s Bake, Borrow, and Steal, the most delicious installment yet in the Bakeshop Series set in Ashland, Oregon! As the autumnal hues of November fall over the Shakespearean hamlet of Ashland, Oregon, Jules and her team at Torte are working on their biggest event ever. They’ve been invited to create chocolate showpieces for the gala opening of a new exhibit, Shakespeare’s Lost Pages at SOMA. The museum, located on the campus of Southern Oregon University, is getting ready to unveil the Bard’s lost manuscript, Double Falsehood, which is being touted as the greatest artistic discovery of modern times. In addition to molding luscious, silky chocolate into magnificent structures, Torte will be serving an authentic Elizabethan feast straight from the pages of a sixteenth century cookbook featuring Lardy cakes, Frangipane tarts, and jellies with chestnut cream.Jules has underestimated the amount of work required to pull off such a culinary feat. She finds herself in the strange position of feeling frazzled and stressed as the day of the gala approaches. However, her team rallies around her and once the massive works of chocolate art are safely installed at the museum, she can finally let out a sigh of relief and revel in the excitement of the grand celebration. But her relief is short-lived. Right before the unveiling, news quickly begins to spread that Shakespeare’s lost manuscript is missing. Not only that, but the security guard tasked with keeping the priceless artifact safe has been killed. Is this a case of a heist gone terribly wrong? Or could it be that a killer is lurking in the museum archives?

I hate to say this, as I have loved this series, but for me this one missed the mark. I am not even really sure why… Perhaps too much content devoted to prior books? Trying too hard to include all of the previous book’s characters? Not enough time spent on developing the new characters in this book? I am not sure but I am sure that if this was the first bake shop mystery I had ever read, I wouldn’t be in a hurry to read the next.
This is one of the best entries of Ms. Alexander’s Bakeshop series. The theft of a newly found Shakespeare’s lost manuscript, an attempted murder, an actual murder, and Jules Capshaw, the intrepid heroine, smack in the middle of the action as usual. An early winter storm plays a big part in the story as well. The supporting cast, including the brooding (to me he is) Professor The Cop Doug (Jules’ stepfather), and the people who work at Torte all her their time on stage. A delightful, well-written mystery. Never knew anyone believed the Bard’s plays were written by a woman. However, the stigma of women writing novels didn’t end in the 19th century. “The Outsiders,” written by S.E. Hinton, one of the most successful YA books of the 20th century (and continues to be relevant now), was the work of a multi-talented woman. She was told no one would buy a book about boy rebels in Texas by “Sue” so she had to use her initials. A little factoid. This is a terrific mystery. Look forward to the next one!
Love this book as I have every one from this fun, intelligent cozy series. As always, great food and recipes, too! But what’s with the new oversized edition?? It doesn’t fit with my other books! That’s frustrating.
Dollycas’s Thoughts We return to Ashland, Oregon at what should be a slow time at Torte but Jules and the Torte team are preparing for a big event. The museum at the local college had landed the huge honor of unveiling Shakespeare’s lost manuscript, Double Falsehood to the public. Important people from up and down the west coast will be attending and Torte will be serving them a feast of food from the Elizabethan era. They are also making some amazing chocolate sculptures to add to the exhibit. But the Shakespeare’s Lost Pages at SOMA reveal does not go as planned. Just before the doors are supposed to open an eagle eye noticed the pages on display are fake and the real lost manuscript has been stolen. A search is immediately started and a museum employee is found badly injured in the basement and a security guard is killed. Lance immediately decides he and Jules can find the missing artifact and the thief. The Professor also asks her to keep her eyes and ears open. She just hopes she doesn’t become the killer’s next missing artifact. All my favorite characters are back and have time to shine within these pages. I am so happy that Juliet and Carlos are settling in their lives off the cruise ship. Carlos works so well with everyone and is such a great mentor. I think he brings out the best in Jules too giving her the confidence to take on big events like the one at the museum. Rosa plays a bigger role in this story because her uncle Javier is the director of the museum and is in charge of organizing the unveiling event. Every time I read a book in this series I enjoy the way everyone at Torte is like family. They support each other, cheer them on or pick them up depending on the situation. All are very well-developed with room to continue to evolve as the series continues. Ms. Alexander also introduces readers to new characters with the museum staff. It is a small group but they all play vital places in the plot. Suspects all, we get to know them just well enough not trust any of them. The plot is filled with twists and turns but the true guilty party was evident to us much sooner than it was to those in the book. I really enjoyed the way the reveal played out. The author’s detailed descriptions put me right there in the moment. Again, the food details had me drooling. I really wish Torte was a real place and I could just pop in to have one of Andy’s special coffees, a cup of Sterling’s soups, a slice of Marty’s bread, and one of Bethany’s brownies. Of course, anything Jules baked up would be wonderful too. Bake, Borrow, and Steal is a marvelous addition to this series. It can be read as a stand-alone but I encourage you to read the series from the start to truly enjoy these remarkable characters. Now the waiting begins, Donut Disturb will be released on June 28. I see love will be in bloom. I can’t wait!
I love Juliet the heroine as her family and friends in Ashland was a great story how a missing Shakespeare manuscript leads to murder. Not just a business owner but a clean er sleuth


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