The Proof is in the Pudding by Melinda Wells

For once Della thinks Phil Logan, publicist for In the Kitchen with Della, had found her a publicity opportunity that would be relatively simple. All she had to do was wear a fabulous designer dress and judge a cooking contest. How much simpler could it get? Of course, things are never what they originally seem when one is reading a mystery novel!

Della’s honorary daughter, Eileen, gets her heart broken the day before the Celebrity Cook-Off Charity Gala, where Della is to be a judge. The sticky part? One of the contestants is the man who broke Eileen’s heart – and tries to blackmail her to boot. Eileen gathers herself, though, and along with her parents, John and Shannon, and Della’s other best friends, Libby and Bill, she attends the Gala to support Aunt Della.

Things seem to be going well until John decks Keith Ingram, the contest who had the ill-fated realationship with Eileen. The evening goes downhill from there – there is a fire and once the smoke has cleared, Keith Ingram is found dead. Naturally, given the altercation he had with the murder victim, John is a suspect. To make matters worse, the detective who is assigned to the case is convinced that John is the murderer and basically doesn’t pursue any other leads. Della can’t let this happen to her friends, so she sets out to investigate.

Of course, we find out who the real killer is and it isn’t John. I have to say, Ms. Wells fooled me. I was surprised by the actual murderer in the end. I always like that! There were a couple of places where I laughed right out loud – I think Della is a hoot. I also love her relationship with Liddy and also Eileen. Della is someone I’d love to hang out with – if only she were real! Of course, I’d probably end up arrested if I hung out with Della too long!

The Proof is in the Pudding just came out in February 2010, so it doesn’t look likely that another book will be published soon. I’m going to add a “Upcoming Books from My Favorite Authors” page soon, so check back and as soon as I know when book 4 is coming out, I”ll be sure to let you know!


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