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Down South Café Mystery Books In Order

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Publication Order of Down South Café Mystery Books

The Calamity Café (2016)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Silence of the Jams (2017)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Honey-Baked Homicide (2017)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Apples and Alibis (2019)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Fruit Baskets and Holiday Caskets (2020)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Truffles and Tragedy (2021)Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

The “Down South Café Mysteries” are a set of novel by romance and cozy mystery author Gayle Leeson, a pseudonym of Gayle Trent who also writes as Amanda Lee. As Gayle Leeson she is also the author of the Kinsley Falls women’s fiction series and the Ghostly Fashionista mystery series. She got her start writing for small publishing houses and then decided that she was going to do both the writing and promoting. She soon started Grace Abraham Publishing her own company so that she could keep all the money she made. When she formed her publishing company, she thought she knew all there was to know concerning the marketing of books. But she had another thing coming as she realized how difficult, intense and dynamic it was. She also realized that some of her mystery and nonfiction authors totally lacked the skills to promote their books or themselves or were reluctant to. She thus spent a lot of time setting up events, preparing press releases and designing web pages when she should have been writing. It was then that she decided to shut down her publishing company.

Things started to take off when she shut down Grace Abraham Publishing as she set her sights on getting published by the Big Six. She started querying agents this time with more knowledge about the process. As a published author, she knew how important a solid marketing plan would have on agents. She also had the feature of her imprint Dark & Stormies which had appeared on Woman’s Day magazine to boost her profile. Once she got her agent, it did not take long before she published with Penguin Random House/NAL under the name Gayle Leeson and Amanda Lee. “The Calamity Café,” the first of the series was first published in 2016.She is now a self published author under Grace Abraham and also publishes the traditional way.

The “Down South Café Mystery” series by Gayle Leeson is the story of Amy Flowers. She is a woman with a huge heart who is always looking to help people. She had been working for a restaurant owner named Lou when she decides to open her own café. At the “Down South Café,” she makes new friends from regulars such as Homer and Dilly who play a huge role in helping her resolve murder mysteries. In “The Calamity Café,” the debut novel of the series, Amy Flowers a Virginia native is getting ready to open her southern food café. But things are not off to a good start as someone kills her biggest competition and she is the lead suspect. In “Silence of the Jams,” the second novel of the series Amy finds herself in the middle of another murder mystery. A suspicious homicide was committed in her new café. The director of the Chamber of Commerce is George Lincoln who is also her biggest adversary is the victim. In “Honey Baked Homicide” the third novel of the series, Amy Flowers café has been a huge success. She had been selling some honey for Stuart London a struggling beekeeper and things had been going well when Landon is found murdered outside the café one morning.

“The Calamity Café” the debut novel of the series opens to Amy Flowers the lead working at a rundown café named Lou’s Joint. Flowers thinks she can do better having recently graduated from culinary school. She starts the southern dish specialist café “Down South Café” in the small town of Winter Garden, Virginia hoping to make it big. She wants to purchase, Lou’s café but he will not sell. Things become very complicated when Lou is found dead hit by a blunt object and left with blood dripping from his head. The man’s son had been interested in selling and had asked Amy to meet him for talks. Since Lou and Amy had differed over the sale of the café, Amy is suspect numero uno in the case. However, there are several other suspects including the son who was interested in selling. He seems to have been in need of money and having his father out of the way would have been a convenient way to get the deal done. Amy proves quite the detective and works hard to try to untangle herself from the bloody mess.

“Silence of the Jams” the second novel of the series is set in Winter Garden where Amy is enjoying her time and life as a successful restaurant owner. But things go bad when George Lincoln of the Chamber of Commerce comes to the café to ask her to sell to him. He is her biggest adversary and of course she refuses only for the man to keel over and die as he is finishing up his meal. The assumption is that he had a stroke or heart attack but the autopsy says that the man was poisoned. Luckily, Amy and her café are not the lead suspects in the murder. Still, Amy has to deal with her cousin Jackie whose flighty mother is back into their lives. When she gets a concussion while drunk on Independence Day, it is up to Amy to help Jackie deal with the situation. Meanwhile, Jenna who is Jackie’s mother gets well and kidnaps Aunt Bess. Add to the fact that Thomas the brother to George Lincoln keeps scaring her and Amy’s life could not have been more complicated.

“Honey-Baked Homicide” the second novel of the series is set in Winter Garden during the fall. This is the perfect time to sample the southern delights of Amy Flowers’ Down South Café. Amy just made a sweet deal with Stu Landon, a struggling beekeeper who will be selling her honey for her recipes. She quickly sold out the first batch and went to see him to see if she could get more jars. She arrived to find that Stu had been arguing with a neighbor that had used pesticide that had killed a significant portion of his bees. Amy leaves having got Stu to promise to bring him more honey in the morning. When she gets to her café the following day, she finds Stu in his truck waiting for her. But when she gets to the truck she realizes that something is very wrong. When she opens the door she notices the man is dead. The news is soon all over town and there is a long list of suspects. She will need to apply some of her newfound sleuthing skills to catch the killer.

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