CAKE ON A HOT TIN ROOF
CAKE ON A HOT TIN ROOF
A Piece of Cake Mystery
BY JACKLYN BRADY
ABOUT THE BOOK:
Pastry chef Rita Lucero's Mardi Gras party turns funereal when one of her guests is found dead after a public fight with her uncle-leaving Rita no choice but to find the real killer and clear her uncle's name..
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Jacklyn Brady (aka Sherry Lewis) writes the Piece of Cake Mystery Series, which features a pastry chef in New Orleans. As Lewis, she writes the Senior Sleuth Fred Vickery Mystery Series which features a retiree who enjoys sleuthing.
Q&A WITH AUTHOR JACKLYN BRADY ABOUT THE PIECE OF CAKE MYSTERY SERIES:
1) A SHEETCAKE NAMED DESIRE, the first book in your new series, introduces us to the Zydeco Cakes shop. Tell us about your interest in cakes. Are you a baker yourself?
I’m an amateur baker and an avid fan of various cake shows on TV, but I certainly don’t rise to the level of a professional. But I don’t let my shortcomings slow me down. I love experimenting with recipes and decorating techniques when I have the time.
2) How did you go about creating the spunky pastry chef protagonist, Rita Lucero?
Recently I moved to the Gulf Coast region after a lifetime in the Rocky Mountain west. At about the same time, I began this series and decided on New Orleans for the setting. I knew it would be difficult for me to believably make Rita a native of New Orleans, so I decided to let her learn about her new world along with me. Everything about this area is different from what she’s used to: the people, the weather, the food . . .
Rita’s Hispanic heritage was never a question. I knew she was Hispanic before I knew her name. I’ve spent a lot of time within the Hispanic community and I’m excited to have a chance to use what I’ve learned over the years in Rita’s life.
Beyond that, I had to spend a lot of time listening to Rita and letting her reveal herself to me as she was ready. When I began working with this book, I originally thought that Rita had parents back in New Mexico. I didn’t realize her parents died when she was a young girl until I caught myself writing about their deaths while I was in Rita’s head.
For me, writing is a great deal like acting. I try not to make up things for my characters. Instead, I try to get into character and get myself out of the way.
3) Zydeco Cakes is located in New Orleans. Do you have a special connection to the city?
No special connection, although I have always been fascinated by the city, its history and its diversity. I love the rich cultural experiences you can find there, and the resilience of the people who live there. Since moving to this area, I’ve met quite a few people who are natives of New Orleans, and I’ve been impressed by their warmth and friendliness, and their willingness to answer whatever questions I throw at them. To a person, when I’ve asked what they want the world to know about their town, they’ve said, “the unity.” I hope I can convey that through this series of books.
4) What are some of your favorite books or authors?
I’ve long been a fan of Agatha Christie. A collection of her works will always be on my keeper shelf. I also love Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch novels and Lawrence Block’s Bernie Rhodenbarr series. I enjoyed Sarah Graves’ Home Repair is Homicide series and have recently been enjoying some of Tami Hoag’s work. Of course, there are many more authors whose work I love, but there’s not room to list them all.
With all those mysteries on the list, my favorite book of all-time is John Adams by David McCullough. It makes me want to be a better person.
5) Can you tell us a little bit about what’s in store for Rita in her next adventure?
CAKE ON A HOT TIN ROOF will be out in February 2012, and it takes place in the weeks leading up to Mardi Gras. Thanks to her mother-in-law, Miss Frankie, Rita finds that she’s been volunteered to host a party for the Krewe of Musterion. Having found the baby in last year’s King Cake, Philippe was on-tap to host, but his death left an opening, and Rita is expected to fill it. Between work and the party, she has enough on her plate, but when her Uncle Nestor and Aunt Yolanda show up unexpectedly it’s almost more than Rita can handle.
Then local car salesman and minor celebrity Big Daddy Boudreaux turns up dead at Rita’s Mardi Gras party after a public fight with her uncle. Rita has no choice but to find room in her busy schedule to prove the killer isn’t Uncle Nestor. But there’s a parade of suspects—and not much time to find out who wanted Big Daddy in a big coffin.
Thanks to Berkley Prime Crime Newsletter for this Q&A. Sign up for their newsletter HERE.
OTHER BOOKS BY JACKLYN BRADY and aka SHERRY LEWIS:
Jacklyn Brady writes the PIECE OF CAKE MYSTERIES that include:
Jacklyn Brady also writes as Sherry Lewis. Here are some books from her SENIOR SLEUTH FRED VICKERY MYSTERY Series:
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