Saturday, January 20, 2024

Virtual Book Tour & Giveaway: A Bean to Die For (Coffee Lover's Mystery, #4) by Tara Lush


A Bean to Die For
A Coffee Lover's Mystery
Tara Lush

Cozy Mystery
4th in Series
Setting - Florida
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Publication Date: January 9, 2024
Hardcover: 288 pages
ISBN-10: 163910545X / ISBN-13: 978-1639105458



Perfect for fans of Cleo Coyle and Lucy Burdette, reporter-turned-barista Lana Lewis is back on the case when a body is dug up in the community garden.

Lana Lewis is brewing up new concoctions at Perkatory, a popular café in Devil’s Beach, when she decides she wants to try her hand at growing her own coffee. She secures a gardening plot in the community garden, thanks to her father and the garden’s owner, Darla. Darla’s list of rules is long, but that doesn’t stop someone from leaving Jack Daggett’s body amongst the gardening plots.

Jack, an environmental activist, had been banned from the garden previously, because of his many fights with Darla about organic produce. Lana promises her boyfriend, police chief Noah, that she’s going to stay out of this case, having been too involved in previous cases. But when she learns that Jack died from an accidental overdose, and Darla is the top suspect because of her shady past, Lana can't help but poke around in an attempt to clear Darla's name.

As Lana dives deeper into the case, she learns that Jack had more enemies than she realized. When Darla turns up dead, Lana has to turn up the heat on her investigation. With Lana on the case, it won’t be long before someone spills the beans to crack this case wide open. But will she able to find the killer before they strike again?




5 stars!

The Perkatory crew returns to solve the murder of a cantankerous local activist.

A Bean to Die For is the fourth book in author Tara Lush’s fabulous and fun cozy Coffee Lover’s Mystery series, and what a delightful return it is to the sand and sun of the close-knit Devil’s Beach, Florida community. With its engaging ensemble of recurring characters, suspicious death, and tantalizing Gulf Coast setting, this is a perfect bookish escape from the current wintry weather. 

The main character, Lana Lewis, has a lot going on as usual, but life has somewhat settled down since the events of the previous books. Her relationship with Noah Garcia, Devil’s Beach’s chief of police, is progressing nicely and is about to take a big step forward. Noah’s mother and sister are arriving on the island at the end of the week, and he’s introducing them to Lana. However, Lana is stressing to impress as she plans to prepare her specialty, lasagna, for dinner at her home on Saturday night, especially when she finds herself, once again, embroiled in a murder case.

Lana is the first to discover the body of local activist Jack Daggitt, a man with plenty of people who have a bone to pick with him, and Noah doesn’t want her anywhere near this investigation. She’s more than ready and willing to comply until a regular customer becomes a prime suspect and asks for her help in proving her innocence. However, Lana's desire to help wins out, and soon, she and Erica are hip-deep in suspects. I loved Erica and Peter’s enthusiasm for tackling this new case and how they tried to keep things on the hush-hush and Lana out of dutch with Noah. But Lana was really more twisted up over putting her best foot forward for Noah’s family, initially, than the potential danger involved in tracking down a killer. The three do a great job of identifying possible suspects and working to cross them off their list, yet the discovery of the perpetrator comes as a surprise after all. The author has an absolute gift for creating fresh and fun dialogue, making reading a joy. And while this is the fourth book in the series, newcomers shouldn’t have any trouble getting into and enjoying the story. The author also does a great job referring to past investigations without giving everything away, so readers who will want to read the previous books won’t have had those stories spoiled. 

I recommend A BEAN TO DIE FOR to cozy mystery readers, especially those who enjoy coffee, Florida settings, and fans of the previous novels.


Tara Lush is a Florida-based author and journalist. She's an RWA Rita finalist, an Amtrak writing fellow, and the winner of the George C. Polk Award for environmental journalism.

She was a reporter with The Associated Press in Florida, covering crime, alligators, natural disasters, and politics. She also writes contemporary romance set in tropical locations under the name Tamara Lush.

Tara is a fan of vintage pulp fiction book covers, Sinatra-era jazz, 1980s fashion, tropical chill, kombucha, gin, tonic, seashells, iPhones, Art Deco, telenovelas, street art, coconut anything, strong coffee and newspapers. She lives on the Gulf Coast with her husband and two dogs. Her debut mystery series is published by Crooked Lane Books.


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Rita Wray said...

Great review and cover.

Sunshine City Girl said...

I love this review SO HARD! Thank you! xoxo, Tara Lush