March 21, 2022

Murder Under the Tuscan Sun by Maureen Klovers - A review

Murder Under teh Tuscan Sun by Maureen Klovers
#5 in tht Rita Calabrese Culinary Series
318 pages, Paperback
Published March 10th, 2022
ISBN: 9780999494165

About the book:
An idyllic retreat in rural Tuscany seems like the least likely place for a murder….

Rita Calabrese is a lover of all things Italian—especially the food. So she is overjoyed when Sal, her normally oh-so-unromantic husband, proposes a second honeymoon at a villa in Tuscany. For two weeks, she’ll get a respite from her hectic life as a reporter, sleuth, and mother and be able to just lounge by the pool, traipse through vineyards and olive groves, and gorge on gelato and tiramisu.

Then Rita meets a suave Italian art crimes detective convinced that the villa is the epicenter of an antiquities trafficking ring, and her romantic getaway becomes a working vacation. As she quaffs glorious vino and learns to roll pici pasta by hand, Rita sizes up the other guests. Ostensibly, they have gathered for the nuptials of Alessandro and Giovanna, the Romeo and Juliet of the Italian archaeology world. But is one of them also a criminal mastermind?

When the villa’s owner is found dead in an ancient Etruscan tomb, Rita begins to wonder if something even more sinister is afoot. Plunging into an investigation filled with star-crossed lovers, bitter professional rivalries, long-buried secrets, and fabulous food, Rita finds that Italy never loses its ability to amaze.

Featuring delectable, authentic Italian recipes for caponata, pear and almond tart, peaches with mascarpone, and more!

Meet the author - Maureen Klovers
Maureen Klovers has held numerous positions in government, including a stint as a U.S. intelligence officer, and was a political commentator on DC 101’s talk radio show "Neighborhood Stuff." Ms. Klovers has traveled extensively in the United States, Europe, China, India, and Latin America. She’s hiked the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, been escorted through a Bolivian prison by a German narco-trafficker, and fished for piranhas in Venezuela. She received a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations (with a focus on Latin American politics) from the College of William and Mary in 1999 and a Master’s of Public Policy and Master’s of Business Administration from Georgetown University in 2006. She lives with her husband, Kevin, in Arlington, Virginia.

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My thoughts:
This is my first book in this series that I have read and I really enjoyed it.  I had no trouble reading this as a standalone book.  One of the reasons I liked reading this book is that I enjoyed the setting: a villa in Tuscany, a dream vacation of mine.  The characters were a pleasure to get to know and to try to figure out whose motive was the strongest for getting rid of teh villa's owner.  Just when I thought I had it figured out I was thrown for a loop and it took me until the end to figure it out.  I think that is part of what made this a good mystery to read.  A very enjoyable weekend read for me.  I will have to check out the rest of the series. Don't forget to check out the recipes in the back, they sound delicious. 

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