Author Stevi Mittman’s mystery protagonist Teddi Bayer is a divorced single mother of three whose two-timing ex-husband, Rio, has taken up with a younger woman and having a child with her. That doesn’t keep Rio from contacting Teddi on a regular basis, usually to ask for money. Also, the two have stayed in touch for the purposes of their eldest daughter’s upcoming bat mitzvah, which they have planned for years.
But, back to the mystery side of things – there has been a murder. Teddi has been hired to redecorate a steak restaurant, and her mother discovers a body in the men’s bathroom. The victim is a local food inspector, and he received a bullet between the eyes. Teddi’s on-again, off-again boyfriend of sorts, Detective Drew Scoones, arrives on the scene and is not overly surprised to see Teddi and her mother there. After all, it seems that Teddi always winds up in the middle of murder investigations. Teddi and Drew have not seen each other in several months, and familiar sparks fly due to the sexual tension between them.
In the ensuing murder investigation, the police take a close look at Teddi’s friend, Howard, a local restaurant critic. Teddi wants to protect Howard; she does not believe that he is capable of murder. When a mafia don gets involved in Teddi’s life and it appears that he has an interest in the murder investigation, things get a little too crazy for her. To make matters worse, she discovers that the restaurant that was to be the location for her daughter’s bat mitzvah has burned down. As Teddi’s life gets more complicated, she becomes drawn into the murder investigation in more ways than one - and she might need Detective Scoones’ help to get her out of this one.
Why Is Murder on the Menu, Anyway? is a great follow-up to Mittman’s previous releases in Teddi Bayer series. Things progress a bit between Teddi and Drew, but the author leaves plenty of suspense for future releases. And, as always, we know that the likeable and sassy Teddi will continue to wind up in the middle of another crime scene at any time. For readers who enjoy light mysteries with humor and a touch of romance, this fits the bill.