"Matilda’s Wish" By Beth Prentice: Review/Giveaway/Recipe

Review by Kathleen Costa

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

Fate may be fickle, but Karma is king!

It was a bit disconcerting to receive a call from Blackburn & Associates, Attorneys at Law, formally requesting the presence of Matilda Mary Lockhart. Sure, it’s the name listed on her birth certificate, but to friends and family, she’s just “Tilly.” Her dream to own a bakery specializing in cupcakes had turned into a bankruptcy nightmare, so being called to a lawyer’s office was worrisome at best...scary at worst! Maybe a batch of freshly-baked cupcakes would act as a buffer...or not. Embarrassed by her accidental mess on an expensive carpet and poorly received nervous quips, she learns she is the sole beneficiary of her great aunt’s estate. “Pardon?” Tilly has inherited the remaining half of Dun Roamin’ Farm from a woman about whom she knows very little. Then, the important codicil is revealed. She must reside on the farm for one year, after which, the deed will be transferred into her name and she can do with it what she wants. However, if she vacates early, the property will be revert to a back-up beneficiary, a local Arts society. So, with all she owns along with revised hopes and dreams and a few fears, Tilly takes up residence at Dun Roamin’ Farm.

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Matilda’s Wish Earns 5/5 Animal Menageries...Engaging Mystery!

The welcoming committee—an unimpressed cow, a one-eyed dog, a wayward goat, and a mass of annoying flies—may have greeted Tilly, but the condition of the house, her “city slicker” naïveté, and questions of “Why me?” may be the most problematic. Meeting her neighbors, the very helpful McKenzie clan, is very fortuitous, especially the handsome and accommodating Noah, but her introduction to Polly, an indifferent Sulfur-crested cockatoo, and a middle of the night thunder storm did not alleviate her fears that this was a disaster waiting to happen. Although making a success of this farm experience is paramount to Tilly’s future as well as her self esteem, she was curious about the great aunt whose name and birthday she shares. However, issues with disgruntled family, vandalism, overzealous agro conglomerate reps, thefts, and disturbing threats are challenges for which Tilly is ill prepared and puts her stay in jeopardy. She’s not alone in this “battle” with Noah McKenzie on her side, even the accident-prone Grandpa McKenzie comes in handy, but she is surprised to realize she’s committed to keeping Dun Roamin’ Farm!

Squawking Good Time! Beth Prentice has penned a delightful mystery, refreshingly sans a dead body, as the premier book in her Dun Roamin’ Mystery series. The mystery of why Tilly was left the farm, the odd occurrences, curious animosities, and “leave or else” threats kept me turning every page to the unexpected “Oh, Wow!” peril. Although this isn’t a murder mystery and I’m so fine with that, there was more than enough puzzles needing a solution, and the loose ends were nicely tied up. Beth’s writing style is engaging with descriptive language to fill the senses and add to the tension along with clever banter that depicted well the personalities, yet hid those out to sabotage Tilly. And Tilly? I sure like her with realistic flaws and failures and dealing with bruised self-confidence, yet in a pinch, she comes through. I like the handsome love interest and the relationship she fosters with the rest of the McKenzies and the menagerie of quirky animals. Her creativity with cupcakes, deliciously described, is a fun theme looking to be continued throughout the series. I’d hoped for a bit more emphasis on the Australian (Queensland) locale, culture, Aboriginal influence, or even some stereotypical details to make it stand out. Still it was very entertaining fun, and I am eager for more!

Shhhh! The next book is titled Matilda’s Secret and should be out in 2022. Which Matilda has a secret? Will it effect Tilly’s mandate to stay put? What animal antics are making her life...interesting? And Tilly and Noah?...whew!

Be a Big Beth Prentice Fan!

Along with being one of the creative parts of Gemma Halliday Publishing’s multi-author Aloha Lagoon Mystery series with three books (book 3 Fatal Break reviewed HERE), Beth Prentice pens the two-book Unleashed Mysteries, a four-book romantic suspense Westport Mysteries series, and filled with lots of “Spirit,” the three-book Dandelion Ponds Mystery. Lots to choose from! 

Facebook - Beth Prentice, Author

Website - Beth Prentice Novels

Aunt Matilda’s Favorite—Raspberry Truffle

By Beth Prentice


125g (5/8 cup) butter

2/3 cups sugar

1/3 icing sugar

2 eggs

2-3 tbsp of cocoa

3/4 milk

1-1/4 cups self-rising flour

1 teas bicarb of soda (baking soda)

1 teas vanilla essence (vanilla extract)

Raspberries (strawberries can be a nice substitution)

Nuts of your choosing and taste 


Add a bit of raspberry liqueur (Chambord) for added zing.


Use your favorite recipe. Beth just adds icing sugar (powdered sugar), vanilla essence (extract), cocoa powder, and milk to hers. The measurements were made up as she went. Beat it all until creamy. 


Beat it all ingredients together until well beaten; fold in the fruit and nuts.

Pour into patty pans (cupcake tins with cupcake paper cups).

Bake in a moderate oven (180 degrees C; 350 degrees F)

Bake for 20 minutes or until the toothpick is clear.

Ice with your favorite chocolate icing.

Garnish with fresh fruit.

To enter to win either a print or ebook copy of the book, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line "matilda,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen May 28, 2021. You must be 18 or older to enter. If entering via email please include your mailing address in case you win and would like a print copy. BE SURE TO STATE IF YOU WANT EBOOK OR PRINT. You can read our privacy statement here if you like.

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 goes up next 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. This sounds like a fun and enjoyable read. I'd love to win a print copy!

    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

  2. Sounds like a fun read. Love when there
    are conditions for a prize. You know there's
    going to be a fight. thanks

  3. It sounds like this is a funny book. I'd love to read it. Print copy.

  4. New author to me. Would really enjoy reading. Thanks for the chance.

  5. New author for me, would love to get a print copy! tWarner419(at)aol(dot)com

  6. Sounds like a fun new book. And the recipe looks great- if that's any indication I'm sure the book will be too! Would love to win a print copy.

  7. Beth Prentice writes the best books. I'd love to win a print copy.

  8. Sounds like an enjoyable read for me, would love to win...tks


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