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A Batter of Life and Death

(A Bakeshop Mystery #2)

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  1,534 ratings  ·  248 reviews
Welcome to Torte-a small-town family bakeshop where the coffee is hot, the muffins are fresh, and the cakes are definitely to die for...

It's autumn in Ashland, Oregon-'tis the season for a spiced hot apple cider with a serving (or two) of Torte's famous peach cobbler. It's also the perfect time for Jules Capshaw to promote her family's beloved bake shop by competing in The
Paperback, 304 pages
Published June 30th 2015 by St. Martin's Paperbacks
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Average rating 3.95  · 
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 ·  1,534 ratings  ·  248 reviews

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¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪SomeBunny Reads (Phoenix)•*¨*•♫♪
"What was the deal with these contestants... Was everyone putting on an act?"

Welcome (again) to Ashtown: a small, cozy town in Oregon which seems to have acquired a special taste... for murder 😈
In this second book of the series, Jules and her precious bakery have been chosen to host a baking competition, which brought four other chefs in town. Everyone is very excited for the prize and the opportunity to be seen on TV... until the first course is served... and it's dead cold...

I know what you
Diane ~Firefly~
Good story. I am liking this series. Jules is interesting and once the love triangle gets dropped I'll be much happier, as will she. Her investigations are subtle and the townspeople interesting. This time there is a TV cooking competition in town and it seems all the chefs have secrets.
Jan 26, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozy-mystery
⭐⭐⭐ 1/2
Jules solves another case (view spoiler)
Dollycas’s Thoughts

Can Jules Capshaw Take the Cake? The Pastry Channel’s show has come to Ashland, Oregon and she is representing the family’s bakeshop, Torte, as a contestant against four other pastry chefs. Her family sure could use the $25000 prize to continue their improvements to their business.

Jules has baked a Bavarian Chocolate Cake for the day’s challenge but when she arrives on the set she finds one of the competing chefs dead. The powers that be commit to continuing the show as soon
Apr 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: bingo, challenge
I really enjoyed this second installment in the series. I enjoyed the baking show story line. It was a lot of fun and kept me on my toes guessing the culprit. I really like Jules and the bakeshop setting. Her love life is annoying me but that's about it. I'd love to try one of Andy's pumpkin spice lattes, they sound to die for. The recipe is included at the end but let's face it, mine won't be as good. I did make a copy of the Torte chili recipe that was included and might actually make it, it a ...more
Apr 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cozy-mystery
This series is becoming one of my favorite cozies. I love all the characters but my favorite character hands-down is Richard Lord. He's annoying as well as funny, the chapters on the first two competitions were so funny just because of him. I hope there's a mystery revolved around the Merry Windsor Hotel in the upcoming books, where Jules partners with him to solve the murder, that would be really fun to read. The mystery was good with a lot of clues and red herrings. And I'm liking where Jules ...more
May 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
Solid addition to the series. Jules is a likable protagonist.. but sometimes it is hard to gauge her personality. Other than being stubborn. She quiet, smart and sweet. I guess we will see more development as the series progresses.

The baking show plot was fun. Not sure how I felt about the end. The who and why seemed a little of a stretch. but overall fun read.
They say that time heals a broken heart.

This is a very nice welcome back to Torte in Ashland, Oregon. Summer is winding down and Jules is headed into Autumn with some yummy new creations. Since the shop is a bit slow, Jules agrees to be a contestant on Take The Cake, a reality cooking show with a $25,000 prize. Much to her dismay, Jules discovers an obnoxious contestant face down in buttercream. She really doesn't want to get drawn into another murder but still slips into sleuth mode.

I love Tort
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Back to the Books)
A fun cozy mystery tailor-made for people like me who are as addicted to baking shows as they are to eating baked treats. The mystery was pretty good too.

Reviewed for Affaire de Coeur Magazine for the July 2015 issue.
JoAnne McMaster (Any Good Book)
Jules Capshaw left her cruise ship job to go home and work with her mother at the family pastry shop, Torte. She's also separated from her husband, who kept a secret from her during their marriage that she thought she'd never be able to forgive, which is the main reason she returned home.

When a reality film crew comes to town, they're going to film their cooking show in Ashland, but unfortunately, one of the celebrity chefs is murdered and she's pretty much railroaded to take his place. While sh
Carla Johnson-Hicks
Jul 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cozy-mystery
This is the second book in the "Bakeshop Mysteries". Juliet (Jules) Montague Capshaw is settling back into life in her hometown of Ashland, Oregon after leaving her husband Carlos for a year break. The summer tourist season is coming to an end and Jules is trying to find ways to bring money into the family bakery, Torte, during the off season. She has found an exciting opportunity of letting a bake show "Take The Cake" use the bakery kitchen while they are in town filming. Jules was in for a sur ...more
A second in a series I can see that I'm going to love; A Batter of Life and Death was a wonderful book that I enjoyed.

The characters are wonderful; they're three-dimensional, not obnoxious, and realistic, which are all things that I look for in characters. The MC, Jules is strong and independent without being annoying. There's kind of a love triangle going on, but it works because one corner of the triangle is literally hundreds of miles away. However, I still with Jules would sever ties with hi
Kara ✨ Literary Kaleidoscope
3.5 Stars!
A Bakeshop Mystery #2

I am now a self-proclaimed sucker for these cozy bake shop murder mysteries. 😆 They’re simple yet fast paced, light yet contemplative, and cheesy yet entertaining. The food descriptions are too much for me, though! I’m hungry and want to bake all the time.
Amanda McGill
Apr 02, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2016
A cute cozy mystery.

Jules is still helping out her mother in their bakery, Torte. A reality series bake off is being filmed in their tiny town and Jules ends up being selected as a part of the show! Things on the show start off rocky when one of the mean spirited, drunk contestants is found murdered. Is another contestant to blame?

I like Jules and her relationship with her mother and her ex-boyfriend, detective Thomas. The mystery was good and there were lots of secrets that the cast and crew w
Mar 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
Four stars: A delightfully sweet and cozy mystery.

Jules is adjusting to life in her hometown, Ashland, Oregon, after years of living on a cruise ship. After an unexpected end to her marriage, Jules has settled into working at her family bakery. She is content with baking and finding a way to heal, but there are bills to pay. When an opportunity to appear on a baking show is presented to Jules, she can't resist as Torte could use the money to update their ovens, plus it would be an added boost t
Mar 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
Another great cozy from Ellie Alexander! Her main character Jules ends up competing on a cooking competition show when one of the contestants was murdered. As the substitute she is in the middle of all the backstage action and excitement of filming the show along with running her bakery Torte with her mom. Romance is in the air for many couples in this story- which ones will be together at the end and who killed the chef with all the secrets?
Sep 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
Once again, Ellie Alexander has baked up an irresistible treat of a story. Juliet (Jules) Capshaw is just settling back into life in her hometown of Ashland, Oregon. The summer tourist season has come to an end and Jules has enrolled her family bakery, Torte, in an exciting opportunity: a reality baking show filming right in town. Jules has volunteered space at Torte for one of the five competing bakers; what she didn't expect, was that she would be approached to be one of those contestants hers ...more
Lady Galaxy
I liked the first book in the series, but this second book had a sub plot about a televised baking contest that was totally unbelievable. The author handled it as if it were for a blue ribbon at the county fair where contestants bake their cake off site and off camera and then bring in their final product for judging. In any televised baking contest I've ever seen, all the bakers are in the same place and their every move is filmed. I'm going to give the third book a try because I do like the ch ...more
Andrea Kalmbach
Jul 24, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: cozy-mysteries
I didnt enjoy this as much as the first in the series. It was too long and repetitive. Needed better editing. I will read the 3rd in the series to make my final decision on how much I like this author.
When I read the first of Ellie Alexander's Bakeshop mysteries, Meet Your Baker, I commented that the amateur sleuth, Jules Capshaw, was too impulsive, ready to fling herself into danger. It appears that Jules learned her lesson after ending up with a scar after her last adventure. She's still sleuthing in the second book, A Batter of Life and Death, but her experiences are causing her to be a little bit more cautious.

When Autumn arrives in Ashland, Oregon, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival perform
Anna Lee
Apr 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A Batter of Life and Death is the second book in the Bakeshop Mysteries. The theatre season is winding down for Jules and the residents of Ashland, Oregan's prime spot for everything Shakespearian. However, that doesn't mean that life is about to get quiet. With the appearance of The Pastry Channel's reality tv show, Take the Cake, life is getting really interesting in Ashland. Especially since Jules is a contestant on the show! Things really heat up when one of the contestant's is found dead.

Feb 26, 2020 rated it really liked it
I adore following Ellie Alexander on social media. I've collected all of her books and have been eager to start reading them. I'm so excited I had a chance to finally get back to this series and will have at least 9 more books to continue it with. The Oregon bakeshop setting is perfect. I love that Jules is a very talented chef and actually works really hard in her family owned business. I enjoy watching her develop new concepts or recipes even if the descriptions leave me craving tasty treats. ...more
Oct 29, 2019 rated it liked it
So don't take my 3 star rating and think I didn't like this book. I really liked this book! It was cute and charming and I really enjoyed reading it. I really like these characters and the town and the Shakespeare references. I just feel like the book will not be very memorable or 4 star worthy. I liked it a lot, but I didn't love it. Solid 3.5 stars.

This is a great series to read when you just want an easy, enjoyable, not-too-serious book. Like I said, I absolutely love these characters and ju
Jackie Nolan
Jan 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I buddy read this book with a new friend of mine over on Instagram. We had a lot of fun reading this book and discussing it together. She was even able to chat with the author to ask for her dream cast for the characters if this series were to ever become a TV show. How cool is that?! 🙂

But anyway, I really enjoyed this book. I loved catching up with the residents of Torte that I came to love during the first book in this series. Adam, Stephanie, Sterling, Thomas, Jules, and her mother are all gr
Jul 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
Jules Capshaw competes in a Pastry Channel Reality show. The prize is $25,000. She learns that some people would kill for that kind of money. Murder happens and then the question is who would have done to this to Chef Marco and why? Jules and Thomas are getting closer like when they were in H.S. years ago. He has a talk with her and they do not get to finish since he is called to duty again, since he is the officer in charge. Jules mom loves having her home and the Reality show finds a surprise ...more
Selah Pike
Jul 22, 2017 rated it liked it
Again, an eminently readable story that combines some of my favorite things: fun characters, a cute small town, Shakespearean references, a *baking competition*

And again, the killer is revealed almost by magic! Cringe.
Jun 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
I have read later books in the series and wish I had been able to read them in order. While this was good as a stand along story, you know things that are going to happen. Jules is going to compete in the Pastry Channel’s reality show. One of the contestants is found dead in the buttercream. Jules was told not to find the murderer but she can’t help herself. she is also trying to decide what to do about her marriage and her former job on a cruise ship.
Mar 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I like Jules Capshaw. She's different from my other baking main characters.. I like her relationship with her mom and her over all demeanor. So far she's just at the wrong place at the right time but her approach to solving the mystery is apt and natural and not irritating. My only concern if any, is Jules may end up hurting every bone in her body with every ending...which might make this series a short one. Easy breezy reading, no cats and a very off tanget love triangle.. On to book 3!
Oct 05, 2019 rated it liked it
I started the bakeshop mystery series as a palette cleanser between some more heavy material. The first book, ‘Meet Your Baker’ really pulled me in because of the small-town charm and the connection to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. However, I wonder why no one else in this town is more concerned that multiple murders are taking place here?


I also felt that after the murderer was uncovered, the book tied up too quickly. It felt like the murder plot was abandoned in order to focu
Oct 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A Perfect mixture of delicious treats and baker extrodinaire, Jules searching for a killer

Imagine , delicious cakes, pies, cookies and tortes. Then imagine a cold blooded murder. A Batter of Life and death was a perfect mixture of delicious treats and baker extrodinaire, Jules searching for a killer. If I could give this culinary delight of a mystery more than five stars I would.

Juliet Capshaw is grudgingly competing in Take the Cake, a televised pastry competition from the Pastry Channel.

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Food & Fiction: What's Your Kitchen Style? 14 27 Jul 09, 2015 06:23AM  

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Ellie Alexander, author of the Bakeshop Mystery Series (St. Martin's Press), is a Pacific Northwest native who spends ample time testing pastry recipes in her home kitchen or at one of the many famed coffeehouses nearby. When she’s not coated in flour, you’ll find her outside exploring hiking trails and trying to burn off calories consumed in the name of research.

The 11th book in her Bakeshop Mys

Other books in the series

A Bakeshop Mystery (1 - 10 of 13 books)
  • Meet Your Baker (A Bakeshop Mystery, #1)
  • On Thin Icing (A Bakeshop Mystery, #3)
  • Caught Bread Handed (A Bakeshop Mystery, #4)
  • Fudge and Jury (A Bakeshop Mystery, #5)
  • A Crime of Passion Fruit (Bakeshop Mystery #6)
  • Another One Bites the Crust (A Bakeshop Mystery #7)
  • Till Death Do Us Tart (A Bakeshop Mystery #8)
  • Live and Let Pie (A Bakeshop Mystery, #9)
  • A Cup of Holiday Fear (A Bakeshop Mystery, #10)
  • Nothing Bundt Trouble (A Bakeshop Mystery #11)

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