Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Sweet Masterpiece (Samantha Sweet #1)” as Want to Read:
Sweet Masterpiece (Samantha Sweet #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Sweet Masterpiece

(Samantha Sweet #1)

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  4,898 ratings  ·  521 reviews
An alternate cover for this ASIN can be found here.

Samantha Sweet breaks into houses for a living--all perfectly legal as a caretaker for the USDA. But her real dream is to open her own pastry shop, Sweet's Sweets.

Life is a little crazy for Sam right now. At one of her break-in properties a dying woman insists that she take a small wooden box. Sam doesn't realize that the
Kindle Edition, 244 pages
Published August 27th 2010 by Secret Staircase Books, an imprint of Columbine Publishing Group
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Sweet Masterpiece, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Carole NO- not at all. I find too much sex in it for a child.

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.81  · 
Rating details
 ·  4,898 ratings  ·  521 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Sweet Masterpiece (Samantha Sweet #1)
Sarah -  All The Book Blog Names Are Taken
Interesting job for the main character to have - cleaning abandoned homes. But the whole bakery thing, I have read so many of these 'cozy mysteries' and 'chick lit' books where the main characters own or work in bakeries. Blech. I did however like that this MC was a little older and would consider reading others in this series. ...more
Apr 30, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: a, cosy-mystery
What is it with American cozy mysteries? Weak plot, weak mystery, lots of cookery... The structure of this type of novel is like many surburban houses: same house, different curtains.

Nov 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Pastry baker Samantha Sweet finds an unmarked grave, then pairs up with Deputy Beau Cardwell to investigate.

Shelton's storytelling is superb, her setting are vivid and her characters are likable, real and well-developed.

An entertaining read.
Feb 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2019
Dollycas’s Thoughts

Samantha Sweet has a unique occupation. She breaks into foreclosed abandoned homes for the USDA to get them ready for resale. She is never sure what she will find but she never expected to find a bedridden dying woman in one house and a grave in the backyard of another all in one day. The upside is meeting Deputy Beau Cardwell. She gets to see more of him as she uncovers major clues to help identify the backyard body. There is a spark between them that is undeniable.

Sam’s true
Mar 30, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: freebie, cosy-mystery
2.75 Inoffensive but Meh Stars

Started on a good note - with the heroine - Sam baking and making me want a chocolate cupcake so bad. Alas that was the high point, not the cosy mystery I was hoping for, didn't find myself curling up at the corner of the sofa and loosing myself in the pages.

Sam's daughter...ick

A tiny bit of skim reading at the 45% mark and whilst everything else was read I've not retained it.

Freebie on amazon
May 25, 2012 rated it really liked it
What a fun book..This is the first I've read by this author and it was so enjoyable..Can't wait to start the second in the series.. ...more
Jan 06, 2014 rated it it was ok
At age fifty; Samantha Sweet’s dream was to own a bakery featuring cakes, cookies, and cupcakes. Currently, she was doing her baking at home under less than ideal conditions. Until she saved enough money to accomplish that she worked part time for a government agency cleaning and maintaining homes that had gone into default. Her job was to get them into shape to be sold.
One day, she found a very ill, very unusual woman lying in bed in one of the houses. The woman gave Sam a box which she said
Oct 22, 2014 rated it did not like it
Sam is a 50 year old, pudgy? heavy? stocky? (Don't really know) woman who wants to open a bakery but cannot afford the capital investment. To save money she works for the USDA cleaning homes currently in foreclosure and caters baked goods she prepares in her very small kitchen. At 16 she left Texas to explore Alaska where she was employed as a camp cook on the Alaskan pipeline. She became pregnant, left Alaska without telling the father, moved to Denver, etc., etc., etc. She is still sexy enough ...more
Jun 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Sweet Masterpiece by Connie Shelton is the first Samantha Sweet mystery. Samantha Sweet cleans out repossessed houses but dreams of opening her own bakery. At one of her houses she finds a fresh grave with the body of a well known artist. A fun start to the series. Some paranormal elements with a box which seems to have magical powers. Interesting and likeable characters. A quick and light entertaining mystery.
Shawna Shaheen
Jan 30, 2021 rated it really liked it
Sam (Samantha) works with the USDA. She cleans and maintains abandoned properties. But what she really wants to do is open up her sweet shop. And she knows she will call it Sweets Sweets. She already makes cakes for a bookstore that Ivan owns. And some other people that have heard about her. On her USDA work days Sam finds and old lady dying Bertha. Around town she is considered a witch
. Then Sam comes to another house she is cleaning up and discovers a grave. Sam wonder how this happened.
Leslie aka StoreyBook Reviews
Nov 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cozies, 2015
I really enjoyed this book! The protagonist works for the USDA when houses are foreclosed upon. Samantha maintains the properties until sold. In her spare time, she bakes out of her own with a dream of owning her own shop. Things are going along well until she finds a grave at a house she has been asked to secure. This leads into several mysteries - who is the dead person and what about an artist's work that is found in the closet? How did it get there?

There is also this mystery box that she tak
Nancy Haddock
Jul 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A sweet find

Fabulous book with an excellent plot, great characters, and a bit of romance. I have a new series to read!
Jan 08, 2019 rated it liked it
Not too exciting for my first cozy of the year.
Oct 03, 2013 rated it really liked it
"Sweet Masterpiece" by Connie Shelton was, for me, a good introduction into the life of Samatha Sweet. She was a likeable central character who presents a strong and positive image. I also liked the fact that she was in her 50's and working two jobs to pay her bills and save for her dream of owning her own bakery. I had never heard of her job for the government before I read this book. I found it fascinating that she broke into homes that people had defaulted on their government loans and walked ...more
Apr 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Samantha Sweet breaks into houses for a living—all perfectly legal as a caretaker for the USDA. But her real dream is to open her own pastry shop, Sweet's Sweets. Life is a little crazy for Sam right now. At one of her break-in properties a dying woman insists that she take a small wooden box. Sam doesn't realize that the old woman was known locally as a bruja, a witch, until she begins to feel some strange effects from the box, herself. Meanwhile, at another property, she finds an unmarked grav ...more
Jeanne Jenkins
Feb 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2014
Sam Sweet moved to Taos New Mexico to start a new life. She works for USDA. Apparently when a home is left vacant and money is owed, the USDA takes it over. Sam cleans the home, disposes of old stuff and personal stuff. Apparently is pays well. But her love is her baking. She makes cakes and cup cakes and cookies for parties, etc. One day she wants to open her own bakery and call it Sweets Sweets. Life is going well until she is cleaning one of the houses and finds what she thinks is a grave in ...more
Sep 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Samantha, AKA Sam, cleans out foreclosed properties in Taos, NM. She is shocked to find a grave in the backyard of one home, and when the police are called in, it seems as if the former inhabitant might have been a famous reclusive artist. Was his death murder? Could greedy relatives have been responsible? Sam, who does custom baking and hopes someday to open her own bakery, is curious enough not to let it drop, though the police chief wants to close the case. A Kindle freebie, this relaxing coz ...more
Sue Ross
Nov 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Another wonderful series

This is the first book in a new to me series. Sam Sweet breaks into vacant houses for a living. It's legal though. She is caretaker for houses that have been foreclosed on. When she discovers a grave in the back yard of one of her houses, things get dicey. On top of that she has an elderly woman die in one of the houses she was cleaning. Not before the old lady gives her a wooden box. I really enjoyed this book and I'm glad there are more in the series.
Jun 01, 2016 rated it really liked it
Mystery, magic, and cakes!
All Samantha Sweet wants is to have her own bakery. But her life becomes more interesting when she receives a mysterious box that imbues her with powers and stumbles upon a murder mystery in the small New Mexico town. This was very different from the mystery and paranormal stories I have read. It's a light read and has some interesting characters and set up, again different from the usual mystery fare. Perfect for a rainy day!
Jul 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book, Samantha breaks into foreclosed houses and cleans/fixes them up for resale. She is also saving for a bakery of her own. During this book she finds a house with the paintings of a very good artist and also his gave on the land. She believes it is murder. She developes a relationship with a policeman who helps her look into the case. Her adult daughter moves back home to live with her and it seems to be going well even though there had been trouble in the past.
Melanie Jackson
Jul 19, 2011 rated it it was amazing
What a fun read! Sam has unusual careers-- government sanctioned housebreaker and baker. The housebreaking is just until she get enough money together to open her own bakery, but as we all know, money is in short supply these days. Though cleaning repossed houses is usually more boring than scary, Sam manages to find two bodies in the course of one day. Could the deaths be related?
Ted Tayler
Jan 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
"You can't judge a book by its cover"

An entertaining mystery, that is obviously by an accomplished writer. Not a fan of the supernatural element though, and if I had been searching for a paperback to read, the cover would have put me off straight away. That would have been my loss, because what was inside was far better than the sugary, sweet coating suggested.
Georgiann Hennelly
Mar 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Samantha Sweet works for the USDA. Her job involves breaking into houses. Her real dream is to own a Pastry shop. Things are going well until she finds a grave at a house she has been asked to secure. This leads to several mysteries including a mysterious box and some artists work found in a closet. Can Samantha solve these mysteries?
Bea Whetsel
Mar 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
Sweet Masterpiece

This was my first novel by Connie Shelton. I was pleasantly surprised by how good it was. A very likable protagonist and supporting characters coupled with an interesting plot made for an enjoyable fast read.
Pam Falbo
Jan 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book! I enjoyed the characters, the setting, the story line....everything! Sometimes I look for an easy read, and this fit the bill PERFECTLY! I am thrilled Connie Shelton has 10 more books in her Samantha Sweet Series!
Love it!
Sep 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
My First "Samantha Sweet" Book☺️...Loved all The Unsolved Mysteries,till the end..Kept me Very Interested in Samantha's life... "Multitask x 3" is What Samantha does so Well... 🔍🔎 Plus! ...more
Jul 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2018
What a fun read. Love the characters and can't wait to read more in the series! ...more
Feb 09, 2020 rated it liked it
Fun little mystery series
Apr 01, 2017 added it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 11, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2021
Sam wants to open her own pastry shop but a few obstacles stand in her way. Her grown daughter shows up on her doorstep--jobless and homeless; her bank account is at an all-time low, and trying to work from the tiny cramped kitchen in her home is becoming impossible. For now, instead of a baker, Samantha Sweet is the lady who breaks into houses for a living and the things she discovers often lead to trouble.

When she finds an unmarked grave on a property Sam calls in the authorities. A small mura
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Goodreads Librari...: Adding cover 3 11 Jun 21, 2017 07:07AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Fit to Be French Fried (Felicia's Food Truck One Hour Cozies Book 1)
  • A Dead End (Saints & Strangers, #1)
  • Sweets and a Stabbing (The Pink Cupcake Mysteries #1)
  • Bed and Breakfast and Murder (Fiona Fleming, #1)
  • Murder in Cherry Hills (Cozy Cat Caper Mystery, #1)
  • BlueBuried Muffins (Black Cat Cafe #1)
  • The Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum (Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum #1)
  • Coffee and Crime (Cup of Jo Book 0)
  • The Gossiping Gourmet (Murder in Marin Mysteries, #1)
  • The Secret of Seaside (Paige Comber Mystery Book 1)
  • Death by Chocolate (Death By Chocolate #1)
  • Killer Cupcakes (Lexy Baker #1)
  • The St. Valentine's Day Cookie Massacre (Hatter's Cove Gazette Mystery #1)
  • Promotions & Poisons (Presley Thurman Cozy Mystery #0.5)
  • Stiff in the Sand (Cape Hope Mysteries Book 1)
  • Darcy Sweet Mystery Box Set One (Darcy Sweet, #1-6)
  • Dial P For Poison (Movie Club Mysteries, #1)
  • Looks that Deceive
See similar books…
My love of books started with weekly trips to the library as a child and from the moment I learned to read I can't remember a time that I didn't have at least one book going. For the past 25 years, that list has grown to include what I'm reading and what I'm writing at any given time.

I began writing my Charlie Parker series when my husband and I lived on Kauai, then continued them in my home stat

Other books in the series

Samantha Sweet (1 - 10 of 14 books)
  • Sweet's Sweets (Samantha Sweet #2)
  • Sweet Holidays (Samantha Sweet #3)
  • Sweet Hearts (Samantha Sweet #4)
  • Bitter Sweet (Samantha Sweet #5)
  • Sweets Galore (Samantha Sweet #6)
  • Sweets, Begorra (Samantha Sweet #7)
  • Sweet Payback (Samantha Sweet #8)
  • Sweet Somethings (Samantha Sweet #9)
  • Sweets Forgotten (Samantha Sweet #10)
  • Spooky Sweet (Samantha Sweet #11)

News & Interviews

Need another excuse to treat yourself to a new book this week? We've got you covered with the buzziest new releases of the day. To create our...
56 likes · 14 comments
“The ride through town and out to the gorge was filled with that inane ‘how was your day’ chitchat which seems to mark the beginning of new friendships that don’t yet have enough momentum to simply pick up where the last conversation ended.” 0 likes
More quotes…