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Christmas Caramel Murder (Hannah Swensen, #20)
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Christmas Caramel Murder

(Hannah Swensen #20)

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3.49  ·  Rating details ·  4,479 ratings  ·  569 reviews
Christmas normally descends on Lake Eden, Minnesota, as gently as reindeer alighting on a rooftop—but this yuletide season the only thing coming down Hannah Swensen’s chimney is a case of murder . . .
 
The holidays have arrived, and Hannah and her good pal Lisa have agreed to provide all the goodies for the town’s annual production of A Christmas Carol. But before anyone c
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ebook, 204 pages
Published September 27th 2016 by Kensington
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Amber Martingale Because it's a flashback she's talking to her husband about of the Christmas before she married him, which is why she says "You weren't here last…moreBecause it's a flashback she's talking to her husband about of the Christmas before she married him, which is why she says "You weren't here last year."(less)
Isadora I'd definitely read the first books. They are more entertaining and mysterious than these last ones.

Community Reviews

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James
If you've been following my reviews closely for the last few months, you're probably thinking... how many baking murder books does this guy read? Or how many did that Joanne Fluke author woman write? Well... the Hannah Swensen series is up to ~25 in 2018. I've just finished reading #20 entitled Christmas Caramel Murder. I have the next three on my Kindle to read this fall, but I want to be fully caught up so I can get back to many other series I also enjoy. As for this one, it's a shorter novell ...more
Lena H.
Nov 04, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozy-mysteries
If you take out the recipes, the hokey conversations about how well they know each other, the declarations of love from Mike and Norman (which are super weird considering that this whole book is a story that Hannah is telling her husband Ross [who coincidentally is a virtual stranger]), and the analysis of everyone's door knocking patterns, you'd have a fairly decent story of about 40 pages. For me this series is like that black sheep cousin. You have a sentimental attachment, nice memories abou ...more
Susan Johnson
Aug 07, 2016 rated it it was ok
There is one thing about cozy mysteries. You have to suspend your believability.. How many times in a small Minnesota town can a cookie store owner find dead bodies? This goes for knitters, librarians, interior decorators and real estate agents too. You have to just go with the flow. I also find it questionable that a cookie store owner could make enough to support her business, herself and a partner. Still you're not reading this for great literature but for the cookie recipes.

The recipes take
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Marissa
Dec 31, 2016 rated it did not like it
I have read all the books in this series, but now I'm finding them to be stale and annoying. I keep hoping they will get better but they don't. I know these are cozy but they are starting to feel more corny than anything. Everyone who causes Hannah turmoil or does her wrong, dies immediately. If we could all be so lucky. Why can't they stick around for a couple of books before they get killed off? And I like cookies as much as anyone else but I am tired of there being more recipes than story. I ...more
Randee
I have faithfully read Joanne Fluke's 'Hannah Swenson' series since the first book. I used to even buy each one, but 3-4 books ago, I stopped and began borrowing them from the library. The last book was so 'out of steam' that I thought I might stop reading this series altogether. Old habits die hard and I ended up borrowing this one. At least it's short. I have had the nagging feeling that Ms. Fluke, herself, is bored with the series. With this book, I am convinced she has lost interest. It is o ...more
Kelly
Nov 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Sorry, but can we maybe just kill off Ross?
Kelley
ARC received courtesy of Goodreads.com First Reads Giveaway

Jumping into this series at Number 20 is probably the reason that I gave this book 3 stars. More my fault than the book, I think. There are lots of characters that readers who follow this series know and love, I'm sure. I just couldn't figure out the relationships in such a short novel.

The recipes in the book need to be made!

I'm going to hand this book off to someone who follows the series!
Alaine
Dec 14, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I've read all the Hannah Swensen mysteries. This one left more than a little to be desired. The dialogue was written as if the author was trying to achieve a predetermined word count. There was an exchange between Hannah and Lisa while hanging decorations. Hannah said "I'll stretch up" Lisa replies "I will bend down." Really?
Even with the verbosity, it took less than 24 hours to read. Including working and sleeping. At least I didn't pay for this book. Thank heavens for the Library.
True to form,
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Fran
Nov 02, 2016 rated it it was ok
In good news, the book is very small! The bad news is that it is still full of patronizing morons. Hmm I think so-and-so is probably a murderer, I think I will go take them some food. Alone. Because I'm not stupid or anything.

What the heck was the point of pissing people off and having her marry Ross, if the whole book is a flashback? Stupid Stupid Stupid!

Please, no more of the series. They are not good anymore. Stop. Done. Fini!
Glen
Nov 06, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: cozies, mystery, christmas
This latest entry in the Hannah Swenson series lacks a little something. I read that Joanne Fluke was really too busy in Hollywood to really give this book her full attention, and I believe it.

Taking place a year before the previous book in the series, Hannah tells Ross (whom I was hoping would be the victim in this book. Does anyone actually like Ross?) the story of the murder of Phyllis, who was a tramp and trying to steal the husband of Hannah's business partner. The whole family goes about t
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Beth (MrsGinTN)
I think I'm done with this series. I felt like there was more recipe than story here. Also, I actually had to stop myself from rolling my eyes at some parts. Did I really need a description of how a Keurig works?
Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
Maybe because I didn't start this from the beginning of the series but, I had a really hard time getting into this. I think maybe it was a little too...cookie cutter for me. Okay bad pun, but, I think I like the darker mysteries more than the almost sugary sweet ones.

Not a bad read, just maybe not my cup of tea.
Shelley Lawrence
This book really did not sit well with me at all. First of all, it felt very formulaic (to all her other novels) and quite juvenile. The language is so basic and not at all how people converse in real life. We don't tend to overstate the obvious and point out every detail of things that should be assumed and understood.
SPOILER BELOW*****
Secondly, I'm so over the trope of the crazy Christian person being the idiot villain who hears God tell them to do something wrong. Really? When would that eve
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Cathy
Dec 15, 2016 rated it did not like it
This book was painful to read. I used to be a huge Joanne Fluke fan. I could not wait to sit down with her books, when I first discovered the Hannah Swenson Mystery Series. And the recipes were an added bonus. Over time the story line became old, stale and boring. The recipes don't even hold my interest because I am so discussed with the story. Sorry you are not listening to your fans Joanne Fluke because you are losing a lot of your followers. I am one of them and I am done. There are too many ...more
Cheryl Rowland
Oct 18, 2016 rated it it was ok
I did not find this book as well written as some of the earlier books in this series. Not much of a storyline and I found too many typos. The best part of the book were the recipes.
RebeccaS
Mar 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was a short, but sweet Hannah Swenson novel. I am a sucker for anything holiday themed, so I loved all the holiday accents included. Poor Lisa is worried that Herb is spending a little too much time with his new assistant... someone who he dated back in high school! She also happens to be the mayor's mistress and widely disliked around town. So it's not that surprising that she turns up dead on the side of the road. And even less surprising that Hannah is the one to find her. But with so ma ...more
Mark Baker
Dec 14, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016, mystery
It’s Christmas time again in Lake Eden, but trouble is brewing for Lisa, Hannah’s partner at The Cookie Jar. Her husband, Herb, is working late every night, and his new assistant is Phyllis, his high school girlfriend. Then Phyllis is cast as Mrs. Claus opposite Herb in the community play. Naturally, when Phyllis shows up murdered, Lisa and Herb are both suspects, and Hannah must work hard to clear their names.

Those familiar with the series will enjoy a chance to check in with the gang in this C
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Erin Cataldi
Nov 27, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2017, audiobook
I was looking for a cozy Christmas mystery and although I got what I asked for I hated it. This was almost too cozy. This is the twentieth Hannah Swensen book and by god, does someone die every month in this small town? Is Hannah always the one tripping over bodies? Why do the police let her run her own parallel investigations when she clearly has no formal training? Why is she such a goody goody meddler? There is no tension or real intrigue in this mystery. Readers are spoon fed a watered down ...more
Kevin
Aug 09, 2017 rated it it was ok
A really disappointing flashback novella. Hannah's smartphone texting and sending pictures, I'm pretty sure the flashback is set before she got rid of her flip phone.
Nancy Narma
Sep 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
“The Perfect Cozy Mystery to Find in Your Stocking”

As Hannah regaled to (now Husband) Ross, it all began with a caramel-colored tale. Christmas was just around the corner in Lake Eden. What could be more traditional than the talented Lake Eden Players in a production of “A Christmas Carol”? As we have all experienced from time to time, nothing seems to be going smoothly—a broken popcorn machine, a long-standing candy company going out of business, etc., which also means a double order of cookies
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Christine
Oct 21, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: cozies
This is the latest in the Hannah Swenson series. This is a flasback story. Hannah reminisces about the previous Christmas where she of course stumbled over a dead body. The body is that of Phyllis Bates, who was playing Mrs Claus with Lisa s husband Herb as Santa. It is also no secret that Phyllis was trying to lure Herb awsy from Lisa. So of course Hannah sets out to solve the crime.

I have always loved this series it is what started me on the cozy genre. This was a bit shorter than usual. We sa
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Ali
Nov 01, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: food-mysteries
I was not a fan of this installment, for many reasons. First off, it was extremely short, and read almost more like a short story than a stand alone novel. Second, I didn't like how it was told in flash back, and hope that that isn't the format going forward as a way to deal with Hannah now being married, and yet still keep the interest of the love trial. The last part that bothered me was the appearance of Hannah's father as a ghost. I suppose it was relevant to the Christmas Carol theme, but s ...more
Loraine
Christmas normally descends on Lake Eden, Minnesota, as gently as reindeer alighting on a rooftop—but this yuletide season the only thing coming down Hannah Swensen’s chimney is a case of murder.

I have read several of Fluke's Hannah Swenson series. They are quick, easy to read, cozy mysteries. The plots are not extremely complex and fairly predictable, but there are enough viable suspects for me to have to think about the possible murderer. I do have to admit she fooled me on this one. I love Ha
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Beth
Dec 09, 2016 rated it liked it
Very happy to be able to give this book three stars. It's the best Hannah Swensen book that Fluke has written in several years. I've stuck with the series through its doldrums both because I still enjoy the characters and settings, and because (true confession) most of the recent books have been so poorly written that I actually enjoy thinking about how I would edit them if I had the job. This one reminds me of the earlier days in the series when the writing was stronger. Happily, Fluke relegate ...more
Amy "the book-bat"
I really love the Hannah Swenson books. The recipes throughout the books make me hungry and I want to go play in the kitchen! I really want to make the Christmas Orange Raisin Cake. (I think it would be fantastic with dried cranberries substituted in for the raisins). I even bought a small bottle of Grand Marnier so I can try it out :-)
Catherine
Nov 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
Love all of Joanne Flukes murder mystery. Love the recipes. However, the murders are getting easier to solve. I would enjoy want to hang around with Hannah. Too many murders in one little town. And the recipes took up …46 pages.
Nurse Lisa In Ohio (PRN Book Reviews)
3.75-4/5. Fun, cozy series. :)
Elisa Hordon
Dec 17, 2016 rated it liked it
It was ok a bit confusing that Hanna was remembering a time before she married Ross but it was ok I still prefer the stories before Hannah married Ross and as usual the recipes were great.
Angie
Dec 18, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: christmas, cozy, mystery
3.5 stars

The usual Lake Eden and Hannah stuff here. I enjoyed it though it I wouldn’t want to read another one too soon.
Juli
Christmas Caramel Murder is the 20th book in the Hannah Swensen series. This story is a novella of only about 200 pages or so, including the recipes sprinkled throughout the book.

Hannah's new husband, Ross, asks her why The Cookie Jar won't be selling Christmas caramels for the holidays. Hannah replies that she and Lisa, her business partner and good friend, believe the candies they made last holiday season are bad luck. When she made them last Christmas, she found a bag of them near a dead bod
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Goodreads Librari...: Incorrect Page Count 2 11 Sep 15, 2018 02:10PM  
Chapters 11-End 5 13 Jan 17, 2017 05:35PM  
Madison Mega-Mara...: #7 - Christmas Caramel Murder 1 5 Jan 10, 2017 07:01AM  
Play Book Tag: Christmas Caramel Murder by Joanne Fluke 2.5 stars rounded up 1 10 Dec 31, 2016 02:18PM  
Goodreads Librari...: Christmas Caramel Murder by Joanne Fluke 2 22 Sep 27, 2016 04:47PM  
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4,156 followers
Like Hannah Swensen, Joanne Fluke grew up in a small town in rural Minnesota where her neighbors were friendly, the winters were fierce, and the biggest scandal was the spotting of unidentified male undergarments on a young widow's clothesline. She insists that there really are 10,000 lakes and the mosquito is NOT the state bird.

While pursuing her writing career, Joanne has worked as: a public sch
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Other books in the series

Hannah Swensen (1 - 10 of 24 books)
  • Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder (Hannah Swensen, #1)
  • Strawberry Shortcake Murder (Hannah Swensen, #2)
  • Blueberry Muffin Murder (Hannah Swensen, #3)
  • Lemon Meringue Pie Murder (Hannah Swensen, #4)
  • Fudge Cupcake Murder (Hannah Swensen, #5)
  • Sugar Cookie Murder (Hannah Swensen, #6)
  • Peach Cobbler Murder (Hannah Swensen, #7)
  • Cherry Cheesecake Murder (Hannah Swensen, #8)
  • Key Lime Pie Murder (Hannah Swensen, #9)
  • Carrot Cake Murder (Hannah Swensen, #10)
“Hannah’s 3rd Note: If you’ve made pancakes from scratch before, you know that they’re tastier if you “season” them by covering the mixing bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerating the batter overnight. This is why I always mix my batter the night before.” 0 likes
“Chocolate’s not seasonal. It’s good any time of the year. Chocolate’s like oxygen. It’s elemental.” 0 likes
More quotes…