"Southern Double Cross" By Caroline Fardig: Review/Giveaway

by Kathleen Costa

Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win an ebook copy of this book, and a link to purchase it.

All With a “Southern” Flair!
Savannah, Georgia, is the best place to vacation, soak up some southern charm, and spend time at the Bellandini’s B&B. The owner Papa Sal, also known as Sal the Magnificent, is supported by his granddaughters Quinn and Delilah who run the daily operations, create delicious fare, and provide an enjoyable experience for the guests. But it’s not all a “bed” of roses or a “breakfast” of Pear and Cinnamon Scones because Quinn has runs afoul of few murders. First, a good friend is accused of his brother’s murder (Southern Discomfort) and then digging up a thirty-three-year-old cold case puts her boyfriend’s beloved aunt on the police radar (Southern Harm). Some believe she is the “resident expert on stumbling over dead bodies,” but she not left on her own. Along with her sister Delilah and grandfather Sal, a loving and supportive boyfriend Tucker Heyward, and childhood friend Detective King, there are her band mates Pepper, Callie, and Rhetta, King’s partner Detective Flynn, and, although she doesn’t have personal non-corporeal experience, her late Uncle Frank. Quite the eclectic bunch of friends and family to say the least!

A Southern B&B Mystery
Southern Discomfort (2018)
Southern Harm (2019)
Southern Double Cross (2020)

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Image Source Random House
Southern Double Cross earns 5/5 Blunt Objet d’art...Entertaining Fun!
Quinn is a bit stressed trying to ensure a successful fundraiser for the Chatham Crescent Women and Children’s Shelter. The "to the nines” event is being held at the gorgeous antebellum estate owned by Duke and Magnolia Stiles, and although an uncooperative waiter, argument between Magnolia and another cantankerous Southern Belle, complaints about the band, rumors spread by her boyfriend’s mother, and a kitchen mishap and tantrum made the event challenging, it seemed to be enjoyed by all. Well, not everyone since Magnolia Stiles has been found dead!

It gets worse! Parker Fox, Quinn’s best friend’s brother, literally had a run in with the victim soiling her couture dress with the raspberry galette. Her berating him for his clumsy manner, retribution against the caterer, and Parker’s subsequent stink eye was witnessed by the kitchen staff. So his not following the strict instructions about boundaries and being the one to find the body, puts him at the top of the suspect list. But Quinn is pressured to help exonerate him uncovering motive, opportunity, and means for more than just a disgruntled waiter.

Brilliant! I am not a newbie to Caroline Fardig with her very engaging suspense and thriller Ellie Matthews series, so I’m not surprised she has penned a delightful cozy checking off all the boxes for an entertaining read. With a helpful introduction to the main and supporting characters and their personal connections, then adding to some motive-worthy conflicts, a few candidates emerge as karma’s next victim getting me immediately engaged. But no need to wait, the murder is revealed right away...good choice Karma! From there the mystery challenged my inner Miss Marple with a large pool of suspects on which to focus; motives were realistic, some plausible, others not so much as a prelude to murder, but jealousy, greed, and a few secrets best kept secret were compelling. Along with an extensive investigation, fake names, and misrepresentations, the drama takes a side trip into family issues, the B&B, and dating. But, what I enjoyed the most are the characters she’s created. Quinn is delightful with realistic confidence, fears, and jealousy along with a great stance on not lying to the police, even if she’s asked to, and her relationship was her sister “D” is positive with just the right bit of snark thrown in for realism. Action? There’s ample perilous moments to get through...loved it!

BONUS! My favorite words...recipes included! Caroline Fardig has given readers a marvelous treat of easy-to-follow recipes straight from the B&B’s breakfast table (Pear and Cinnamon Scones, Orange Blossom Scones). And watch out who you bump into! You don’t want to waste any of this delicious treat (Raspberry Galettes). Yum!

Be a Big Caroline Fardig Fan!
USA Today bestselling author Carline Fardig is also one of my favorites writing cozies with treats and a suspense/thriller series that had me mesmerized! Her three-book Ellie Matthews series (#2 An Eye for an Eye is reviewed HERE) is compelling and engaging...hard to put down! Her five-book Java Jive series and the five-book Lizzie Hart Mystery adds humor to the murderous drama. Something for every taste!

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To enter to win an ebook copy of Southern Double Cross, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line "double" or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen February 22, 2020. U.S. residents only and you must be 18 or older to enter. You can read our privacy statement here if you like. We delete all emails after the contest is over.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section in Kings River Life and in our mystery category here on KRL News & Reviews. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. And check out our new mystery podcast which features mystery short stories and first chapters read by local actors! A new episode went up this week!

You can use this link to purchase the book. If you have adblocker on you may not be able to see the Amazon link:

Kathleen Costa is a long-time resident of the Central Valley, and although born in Idaho, she considers herself a “California Girl.” Graduating from CSU-Sacramento, she is a 35+ year veteran teacher having taught in grades 1-8 in schools from Sacramento to Los Angeles to Stockton to Lodi. Currently Kathleen is enjoying her retirement revitalizing hobbies along with exploring writing, reading for pleasure, and spending 24/7 with her husband.
Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases. KRL also receives free copies of most of the books that it reviews, that are provided in exchange for an honest review of the book.


  1. I’ve wanted to read this ever since I heard the title! Legallyblonde1961@yahoo.com

  2. Love reading cozies set in the South. Would really like to read.

  3. I thoroughly love this series. Papa Sal pulls at my heartstrings. Thanks for the chance to enter
    your giveaway and also the insight into the current book by Caroline. robeader53(at)yahoo(dot)com

  4. This sounds great! I’d love to read it. Thank you for the opportunity.


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