My family’s small, but close. We tend to be in each other’s business. My two sisters and I always suspect that it’s the OTHER two who are neurotic, so in COOKING UP TROUBLE, I wanted Tessa and her grandma to yak at each other. My grandma cussed worse than a sailor, had a temper that made an obscene phone caller hang up on her, and was no warm, fuzzy cuddler who baked cookies. Tessa’s Grams is warm and loving, but she says what she says. Sometimes, Tessa wishes she didn’t:
Tessa turned on the mixer to start the cream cheese frosting. Maybe if there was enough noise, Grams would let the subject drop.
“Not every man’s like Gary. Not all of them are rotters.”
Tessa sighed. “I lost three years of my life playing at romance. I’m not wasting time on it again.”
Grams divided her dough into slabs to wrap in plastic wrap. The first batch was already in the refrigerator, chilling. “Who said anything about romance? How about a little toss in the hay? Something to get the juices going again.”
Tessa laughed. “My juices are just fine, thank you. Leave it alone. You usually have something fun to talk about when we get together.”
“Leona Jackson’s back in town. Have you heard?”
“No.” Tessa turned the mixer off. Leona had kept the town in gossip for years before she ran off with a tourist four months ago. Everyone missed her. She was the best hairdresser in Mill Pond. “Tell me about it.”
Tessa Lawrence swore off men when she found her fiancée in the arms of another woman. These days, she concentrates on caring for her small farm and running a bakery and farm stand out of its barn. Ian McGregor moves to Mill Pond to build a resort on the property next to Tessa’s. Tessa’s fine with that. Mill Pond’s trying to attract more tourists. The problem is, Ian understands business, but he’s never changed a tire or pounded a nail. She finds herself helping him more than she expected, and spending time around Ian is a dangerous proposition. The man’s far too good-looking and fun to be around.
Available at: Kensington Books
When some people think of Indiana, they think of corn—which we have a lot of. But to me, Indiana is green—lush, beautiful, vibrant greens—so I use fictional towns and plunk them in an Indiana setting for a lot of my stories. I love cooking and gardening, and those sneak into my novels, too. I’ve collected more strays than I deserve. I’m a fan of Agatha Christie and urban fantasy, and I believe in happy ever after.
My twitter handle: @judypost
My Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/JudithPostsurbanfantasy/