Mixed Messages (A Malone Mystery Book 1) -

10:52 AM Posted by Martha A Cheves


"Dottie's Barbecue"

1 lb. ground beef
1 lg. onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
1 tblsp. sugar
1 tblsp. dried mustard
1 tblsp. vinegar
1 tsp. salt
8 oz. ketchup
Brown meat, add onion and pepper. Combine all remaining ingredients. Add to meat. Cover and simmer for 1 hour

Mixed Messages - Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish

She went directly to her grandmother's grave and stooped down to clear away the debris that covered the inscription on the tombstone.  She heard a noise behind her that sounded like light footsteps making their way through the dried leaves and twigs... But there was no one there.  It's probably your imagination, she said out loud but, when the sun went behind a cloud, she shivered.  Then, she heard the noise again... All of a sudden, a black cat sprang from the woods... As she turned back toward her grandmother's grave, she noticed a mound of freshly dug earth a few feet away.  Curious, she went over and looked down.  Her eyes opened wide and her hands flew to her mouth to stifle a scream.  There, printed in bold black paint on a large rock were the words, "FUTURE HOME OF ANN KERN."

Ann is a wife and mother of two beautiful children.  Most of her married life has been spent being a stay at home mother but now her husband David has decided that she should get a job.  He said he was tired of trying to support the family by himself.  The stress was getting to him and he was staying out late and drinking heavily.  His mother Louise takes her only living son's side and blames everything that he is going through, including the drinking, on Ann.  She agrees that Ann needs to earn her part of the income and even puts in a good word with Father Andrew from their church who is looking for a part-time assistant.

Father Andrew finds Ann very suitable for the position but also finds out who she really is.  He actually has a past with her family.  A bad past and this just might be his chance to get the revenge from years past.

You can't help but feel the love yet anger, sorrow, and pain that goes through Ann as she tries to be a good wife and mother.  But it seems that the harder she tries she can't help but watch everything slip away from her.  This story is so well written and so real that I found myself comparing it to people I knew in my own life.  I'm now looking forward to reading the next book in this series titled Unfinished Business.

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