Playing With Fire by J.J. Cook is the second book in the “Sweet Pepper Fire Brigade” mystery series. Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime, January 2014
Welcome to Sweet Pepper, Tennessee. Nestled in the Great Smoky Mountains, it’s home to the hottest and sweetest peppers in the world—as well as at least one ghost and a hotbed of secrets.
Fire Chief Stella Griffin is working to solve the mysterious death of her predecessor, Eric Gamlyn—who also haunts her cabin. Yet the more she learns, the more burning questions she must answer. Just as Stella thinks she has a lead from Deputy Chum, someone snuffs her hopes—and the lawman.
Adding fuel to the fire, Stella’s parents soon arrive—with her ex-boyfriend—hoping to persuade her to return to Chicago. Now Stella is torn between the life she left behind and uncovering what happened to her ghostly friend. But she’d better think fast or more than her investigation could go up in flames.
What a great read. I was on pins and needles to see who killed Eric and I was glad when the person who I thought killed Eric did not, but was surprised at the circumstances behind the placement of his remains. I’m so happy there was closure for him. Other than that, the present-day murder had me guessing knowing that once we knew who killed Eric, we would know who killed Chum, again surprised at that one too. I really love Stella and her friends and the addition of her parents in Sweet Pepper was a bonus and I do hope we get to see more of them now that Stella has made her decision. I’m looking forward to the next book in the series, especially with how this one ended, I can’t wait to see how it turns out.