In Death and Croissants, comedian Ian Moore introduces Richard Ainsworth, a British film buff who has retired to the Loire Valley to run a bed-and-breakfast. With a failing marriage and a somewhat desperate desire to live a quiet life in the country watching old films, Richard is anything but a detective. Then a guest goes missing, leaving behind nothing but a bloody handprint on the wall, and Richard is sucked into a wild goose chase of a mystery, complete with a gorgeous guest dashing about in a bright yellow sports car; possible ties to a mafia moneymaking scheme; an enormous Texan; twin brothers who are sworn mortal enemies; and an aspiring actor hiding in a giant chicken costume.
Moore brings to Death and Croissants the same kind of chaotic energy and dry sense of humor Richard (and readers) may have seen in classic films like Clue and Young Frankenstein: characters run amok and clues send them off in various directions, all while actual danger lurks in the shadows. "We've got an old man who detests his brother so much he needs to find him so he can keep annoying him, a policeman who doesn't seem to think Missing Persons is his job, a mysterious Italian couple now in the grip of two British perverts, you bossing me around like we're married, and a dead hen!" Richard shouts to his co-conspirator somewhere between breaking and entering into a rival B&B and donning the giant chicken costume himself. It's an absurd, laugh-out-loud caper, featuring quirky characters and strange adventures from start to finish, that is sure to delight fans of cozy mysteries and whodunits. --Kerry McHugh, freelance writer