Pie made me hungry for pie and all the recipes at the beginning of the chapters sure didn’t help (mainly because I can’t bake pie). Alice’s aunt Polly is the Piemaker of Ipswich. She loves making pies and gives them away in her shop instead of selling them. She has won 13 Blueberry Medals for the best pie. Then all the sudden Polly dies and leaves the town of Ipswich and Alice devastated. She leaves Alice her cat Lardo, named for her favorite brand of shortening, and leaves Lardo her secret pie crust recipe. This sets of a whole series of highjinks and leaves Alice’s mother fuming (she has always been jealous of Polly). It also starts the entire town baking pies trying to win the Blueberry now that Polly isn’t competition anymore. Lardo gets catnapped and drugged and Polly’s shop ransacked. It is up to Alice and her friend Charlie to figure out who is trying to steal the recipe.
I liked this little book; it was fun and made me hungry. I liked the twists and turns of the mystery. I thought I had it all figured out and then it turns out I was wrong! So I figured out the mystery along with the kids, which makes for a more satisfying read. I really liked the friendship between Alice and Charlie. He helps her with the mystery and with her grief. I actually didn’t realize this was set in 1955 until I started reading it, but found it didn’t read like a historical fiction book. There were a few things that seemed off for the setting; would someone really climb in a kid’s bedroom window and steal a cat in 1955? But overall I liked the innocence of the time and characters. It was a nice change from some of the more jaded current books I have read. I did find the mom a little off and unrealistic even if she did redeem herself in the end. And why an epilogue? Seriously it wasn’t needed; kids don’t care about epilogues.
I would recommend this one to girls who like mysteries and cooking and a nice light read.