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Assault and Pepper

(A Spice Shop Mystery #1)

3.65  ·  Rating details ·  2,031 ratings  ·  353 reviews
The Agatha Award-winning author of Crime Rib is proud to introduce Pepper Reece, the owner of the Seattle Spice Shop who thinks she can handle any kind of salty customer—until a murderer ends up in the mix…

After leaving a dicey marriage and losing a beloved job in a corporate crash, Pepper Reece has found a new zest for life running a busy spice and tea shop in Seattle’s P
Paperback, 289 pages
Published March 3rd 2015 by Berkley
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Christinna No, it's boring. Way, way boring. The author has spent more time describing various spice combinations than she has on developing the main characters …moreNo, it's boring. Way, way boring. The author has spent more time describing various spice combinations than she has on developing the main characters in the book. I nearly fell asleep in the first 12 minutes. That is never a good sign. (less)

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Average rating 3.65  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,031 ratings  ·  353 reviews

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I went on a cleaning spree and cut my TBR (To Be Read) by 50% last week. I also finished reading all of my commitments through the end of the year, so I could finally pick out a few books from my TBR that I've wanted to read for years. The 'A Spice Shop Mystery series' or any book by Leslie Budewitz, was one of those I kept on the TBR, and finally, I made room for it this week by taking on Assault and Pepper, the first in the series. What a fun book and treat to spend time in Seattle again...

Linda 📚
Aug 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cozy-mystery
Mouth-wateringly aromatic and refreshing story! Leslie Budewitz takes readers on a scenic sight-seeing tour through Seattle's Pike Place Market, while spicing things up with a satisfying cozy mystery. The setting is marvelous--I want to go there right now and visit every shop and sample-test to my taste buds delight! Pepper Reece shines as the lead character; caring and committed to her business and her fellow Market residents. The cast is eclectic and likeable. "Assault and Pepper" is a charmin ...more
Mar 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2019
Dollycas’s Thoughts

Pepper Reece’s life was in flux, her job eliminated and her marriage over. She took a gigantic leap and bought the Seattle Spice Shop in the Pike Place Market. She is working at making the place her own while keeping all the current customers and gaining new ones too. It is a popular place where tourists, fellow shopkeepers, and local market customers stop by for a cup of spice tea to get their day started.

One morning when Pepper arrives to open the shop she finds a body bloc
Aug 08, 2016 rated it did not like it
Maybe if I read this on a beach or maybe if I hadn't been listening to the audio version this might have been a good book. Undeveloped characters, too much description of spices and the shop that didn't add to but took away from the story, which wasn't much of a story. The author needed to get in and establish something of interest, instead she bought new shoes and contemplated changing what seemed a nice spice shop with ambiance into a slick business that even a hipster wouldn't want to enter.
Welcome to Seattle Marketplace!!!
This is where Pepper Reece bought the Seattle
Spice Shop near her loft apartment. This was to
start her new life after she caught her husband
cheating on her and got divorced. Then Pepper
lost her job when the law company went under.
So now she owns and runs the Spice Shop.
It as interesting learning about all the spice
mixtures Pepper and her staff combined together.
My mouth as watering as the description was so
vivid and real.
Pepper who befriends the homeless finds a n
Dawn Frazier
Jan 02, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is the first book in the new Spice Shop mysteries, I was lucky enough to win an ARC. What a great book! Pepper Reece owns a busy spice and tea shop in Pike Place Market in Seattle. She is also dealing with a divorce, and her ex wont leave her alone. She thinks she might have found a new love interest in Alex, who also works in the Pike Place Market. But when a body is discovered in the doorway of her shop, and one of her employees, Tory, is accused of the murder, she must find out what happ ...more
Lisa Ks Book Reviews
Jan 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
First in the Spice Shop Mystery series, ASSAULT AND PEPPER was a tasty read and has whet my appetite for more.

With a large percentage of cozies being set in fictional towns, I wasn't sure how I would feel about this book being set in Seattle at a famous location like The Pike Place Public Market. Honestly, at first it was a little strange for me, but I was soon lost in the story, and Ms. Budewitz’s wonderful writing and no longer gave it a thought.

Her protagonist in ASSAULT AND PEPPER, Pepper R
Debbie Lester
Feb 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
Leslie Budewitz brings reads the first in a new cozy mystery series, Assault and Pepper. This is the first book in the Spice Shop Mystery series and may prove to be quite a favorite for cozy readers. Everything for the trendy Seattle setting to the robust and soothing spiced tea from the Seattle Spice Shop was enjoyable in this book. Budewitz introduces readers to a wonderful new heroine in Pepper Reece and gives them a intriguing and eclectic range of secondary characters. A great first effort ...more
Aug 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I never expected when I OPENED Assault and Pepper and started reading that I would develop a deep love and affection for these characters but that is exactly what happened.

There's Pepper she runs Seattle's Spice SHOP. You can taste the scrumptious and warming tea as the author beautiflly describes the different taste sensations and spices they each contain.

The MARKET that houses The Seattle Spice SHOP is always hustling and bustling and it is not uncommon for panhandlers. One such panhandler na
Apr 06, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: challenge, bingo
3.5 stars. This is the first book in the spice shop series and we are introduced to Pepper’s world in the Seattle marketplace. This one seemed to start out a little slow for me but was overall an enjoyable read for me. I liked the setting and characters and the mystery kept me guessing and my top suspect wound up being guilty. Recipes included in the back.
May 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Pepper Reece has found her place in life after her divorce and losing her job in the corporate world due to a corporate crash. She's running the Seattle Spice shop at the Pike's Place Market and couldn't be happier. She's got some great employees, at least she thought she did until one of them, Tory, is arrested for the murder of a seemingly homeless man who just showed up to set up in the market. Tory has some secrets of her own but Pepper is determined to get to the bottom of all this. She als ...more
Jan 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
The first in the Spice Shop mysteries, Assault and Pepper is a feast for the senses.

Pepper Reece enjoys running her spice shop in Seattle's Pike Place Market. But when one of her employees is accused of murdering a homeless man she goes into action to prove the police have the wrong person in custody.

Filled with intriguing characters, and featuring a wonderful setting, Assault and Pepper is a tight mystery that will keep readers turning the pages. Pepper is a strong, independent woman who has go
Aug 15, 2016 rated it did not like it
Let me start by saying I read A LOT of cozy mysteries, that said, this is by far one of THE WORST books I've ever read. Way too many characters that are thrown at you in the very first chapter with little or no description of who/what they are. During the story they end up being one dimensional with no growth whatsoever. The plot is slooowwwwwwwwww. Almost non-existent. The spices descriptions were over the top, almost as if this was a textbook on spices. And if you've never visited Seattle, rea ...more
May 06, 2016 rated it it was ok
This was a fairly pedestrian mystery involving the owner of a spice shop in Pike Place Market in Seattle who finds a murdered man on her doorstep. Lots of local color was included, and a large amount of information about spices, in fact, in my opinion the author spent too much time setting the scene and not enough time developing her plot. I don't see myself floating on a cloud of cinnamon to the next novel in this series.
Sep 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
A delightful first in a new series, ASSAULT AND PEPPER takes place in Seattle in the famous Pike Place Market. Leslie Budewitz has created a fascinating setting - a spice shop - full of delicious recipes and information about creating spice blends. The plot is clever and well paced, the characters are interesting and fairly complex, and the setting is lovingly described. The Mexican Coffee sounds wonderful!
May 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Argh! I loved this! In a fit of boredom, I once again perused the bargain cozy mystery on Amazon, and this one was on special. Why not? I thought, despite my massive TBR pile and the stack of fresh paperbacks taunting me next to my reading chair. I'm so glad I picked this up!

Basically it's because Leslie had SUCH a wau with words. Her character, Pepper, often thinks worldly thoughts and descriptions that just made this book so much better. For a book about spice, it really made you feel and tast
Doward Wilson
May 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is a fantastic new series. You feel like you're in Seattle, Washington feeling the rain, fog and sunshine just from Leslie Budewwitz vivid description. The background for Pepper Reece's spice and tea shop in the Pike Place Market is so realistically described that you are there. This story has a well plotted and uniquely complex murder with twists and turns that keep you turning the page. This is what midlife should be about. Read it.
Jan 17, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: ebooks, cozy-mystery
Mostly I didn't really like this book. It was really boring to me. Just couldn't get into it. When I did start to like it, it didn't last long. I almost stopped reading it a couple of times.
Just because this book wasn't for me, you might like it.
Dawn Michelle
This was a very good cozy - I like the premise and the characters and the MC Pepper is funny and smart and not easily swayed by a handsome face! I am not crazy about the ex-husband being in the picture, but so far, the author has handled that well and he isn't always a total jerk. UNLIKE the detectives Spencer and Tracy [yes, you read that correctly. I will admit to sniggering out loud whenever the narrator said their names] who are complete and utter jerks and makes you understand why a lot of ...more
Nov 24, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: giveaways
*I received this book for free through Goodreads Giveaways*

I haven't read a cute mystery series with a punny title in ages so I was excited to win this one in a giveaway.

"Assualt and Pepper" features Pepper Reece, owner of a spice shop in Seattle's Pike Place Market. Pepper decides to investigate the death of a man who dies on the doorstep of her shop after her employee is arrested for the murder.

**Things I liked:

- A nice little mystery that kept me guessing. I really wasn't sure who the murdere
Nov 02, 2014 rated it really liked it
Just finished this new cozy mystery, Assault and Pepper, A Spice Shop Mystery by Leslie Budewitz, who also writes the Food Lovers’ Series. I enjoyed this mystery particularly for the sense of place that is developed. The setting is Seattle and the book is “peppered” with references to Seattle landmarks and lifestyle references. The main character, Pepper, is interesting and intelligent and there is a rather large cast of characters, the staff of the spice shop, Pepper’s girlfriends, and the loca ...more
Apr 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: usa-washington, 2015
I liked it a lot! Great characters and wonderful descriptions of the market in Seattle.
The main character, Pepper Reece, spends most of the books reading Brother Cadfael books one after the other. I spent most of the book wishing I was reading a Brother Cadfael book as well.
May 08, 2020 rated it liked it
3.5 I enjoyed the descriptions of the Seattle Market as I had visited it. Cozy mystery good for Safer at home reading.
Jan 02, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cozy-mystery
Pepper Reece is nearing her one year anniversary of owning and operating the Seattle Spice Shop. She has built up quite a clientele of aspiring home cooks, elite restraunts and curious tourists looking to take home souvenirs from the popular market. It comes as no surprise since her and her staff offer a great selection and knowledge of various spices along with some great hospitality. Every guest is offered a cup of freshly brewed spice tea. However, that quickly makes them an instant suspect w ...more
Jan 31, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Star rating: 3.5 - 4 Stars

Two years after getting divorced from her two-timing husband, Pepper Reece finally feels like her life is on track. Her Spice Shop is a success and she couldn't be happier. Then a homeless man is found murdered on her doorstep, with a cup of her Spice Shop's signature spice tea in his hand. When one of her employees is arrested for the homicide Pepper knows deep down that her employee didn't do it. With the police having arrested the wrong woman, Pepper knows it will be
Apr 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cosy-mysteries
Pepper Reese looses her husband and her job in Seattle Washington and decides to buy a tea and spice shop. When one of the homeless is found on her doorstep in less than good condition, her shop assistant is arrested. This is the first in a series and I do like Pepper as a 42 year old character with some experience under her belt getting into shop ownership and all the tangles involved.

I found the other characters a little on the flat side but the ex-husband being a bicycle cop an interesting t
Jan 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: library-books
A relaxing cozy mystery read set in the Seattle Pike Street Market. Leaving the Cooperate Business area behind Pepper Reece buys a spice store. One morning arriving to open her store she finds a homeless man dead in the entrance to store. She upset when she finds out he was mudered and a cup with her logo is found near him. More up occurs when she learns that a value employee is arrested for murder. The dead man is her employee's Father and is not homeless. Pepper's ex-husband, motorcycle cop is ...more
Far too many characters and they are undeveloped, to boot! Didn't care for any of them, and the lead character's cheating ex-husband being a MC was just ewww.

Read more like a tourist guide for Seattle, and pages, and pages, and pages of food descriptions! This is supposed to be a mystery?
I was so bored that I didn't care enough to find out.
Lori Rader-Day
May 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2015
Seattle market as small town. Fun foodie mystery.
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See similar books…
The Seattle Spice Shop Mysteries continue with THE SOLACE OF BAY LEAVES, 5th in the series (ebook and audio, June 2020; in paperback, October 2020).

Pepper Reece never expected to find her life’s passion in running the Seattle Spice Shop. But when evidence links a friend’s shooting to an unsolved murder, her own regrets surface. Can she uncover the truth and protect those she loves, before the dea

Other books in the series

A Spice Shop Mystery (5 books)
  • Guilty as Cinnamon (A Spice Shop Mystery, #2)
  • Killing Thyme (A Spice Shop Mystery, #3)
  • Chai Another Day (A Spice Shop Mystery #4)
  • The Solace of Bay Leaves

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