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The Secret Poison Garden

(Rita Calabrese #1)

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4.33  ·  Rating details ·  12 ratings  ·  7 reviews
Rita Calabrese is the guardian angel of Acorn Hollow—and of her lovable but exasperating "famiglia." She’s always fortifying her down-on-their-luck neighbors with secret deliveries of home-grown vegetables and ravioli alla zucca, sneaking cannoli into her gruff husband’s lunch, and meddling in (or, as she would say, “improving”) the lives of her three grown children.

But n
...more
Kindle Edition, 210 pages
Published June 14th 2018
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Maureen Klovers Sorry, Meg, that I somehow didn't see your question earlier! Ken Leeder is my fabulous British designer. I gave him the basic concept (even sending…moreSorry, Meg, that I somehow didn't see your question earlier! Ken Leeder is my fabulous British designer. I gave him the basic concept (even sending him photos of all the plants on the cover--all poisonous and all present in the Hudson Valley) and we took it from there. He gave me several mock-ups and I tried them out on my friends and fans on Facebook until we came up with something that most people liked.

If you'd like to check out more of his cover art, see https://www.kenleederdesign.co.uk/

I hope you enjoyed the book!(less)
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4.33  · 
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 ·  12 ratings  ·  7 reviews


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LORI CASWELL
Dec 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2018
Dollycas’s Thoughts

Rita Calabrese is about to turn 66 and after overhearing something her children said she decides it is time to follow her dream. She gets a job as a reporter for the local newspaper. While at a party she sets up an interview with the high school biology teacher to do an article about her secret poison garden. When the football coach is poisoned and later murdered Rita puts the blame on herself because in her article she laid out everything a murderer would need to kill, even t
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Sharon
Aug 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I won this book in a giveaway from dru's book musings. It's worth a look just for the recipes.
But The Secret Poison Garden is also a well-written, well-constructed cozy mystery. Rita Calabrese, the protagonist, is an endearing character--a woman who has devoted her life to taking care of her family and community. But after overhearing a conversation among her children where they describe her as an old-fashioned meddler who lives vicariously through them, Rita decides to embark on the journalism
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Nicole
Mar 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysteries
The first Rita Calabrese Culinary Mystery, The Secret Poison Garden, is a lovely little cozy mystery, set in the incredibly Italian small town of Acorn Hollow, New York, and was a delight to read. Author Maureen Klovers definitely has a way with words, and I'm eagerly awaiting all subsequent books in this fun new series! I absolutely adored it!!! A+++
B.E.
Jun 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Starting out, I wasn't sure I liked the main character enough to keep going. She reminded me too much of someone I once knew and disliked terribly. But I forged ahead and , I did enjoy the mystery and I loved the wrap-up. And while I probably wouldn't want Rita as a long term friend, she pretty much redeemed herself along the way. It turned it to be a lot of fun!
Christelle
Jul 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved the main character, Rita Calabrese! I feel like I've known her my whole life - maybe because everyone's had a neighbor or co-worker who, like Rita, is generous and kind but also a busybody who thinks she knows best. The plot hums along nicely, mixing Rita's family life with her efforts to forge a late career as an investigative journalist and solve a murder. All in all, a very enjoyable read!
Bonnie
Aug 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyable read with food and mystery intertwined throughout the story. While busybodies are generally avoided, this Rita character is engaging and enjoying a new career in journalism after many years of helping family and friends, perhaps a little meddling but with a good heart.
Sandy
Jan 25, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
I enjoyed this book. I’m not Italian so I can’t speak to the authenticity of that aspect of the book but I enjoyed that the story featured an main character in her 60s.
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Maureen Klovers has held numerous positions in government, including a stint as a U.S. intelligence officer, and was a political commentator on DC 101's talk radio show "Neighborhood Stuff." Ms. Klovers has traveled extensively in the United States, Europe, China, India, and Latin America. She's hiked the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, been escorted through a Bolivian prison by a German narco-traffic ...more

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