Ok, I am not entirely sure what I mean by the title of this entry, though I do know that a) Fonduing Fathers is the title of Hyzy's new entry (yep, used same word twice in one sentence) in her series of mysteries featuring a White House chef named Olivia Paras. And, I know a second thing. This one builds on the prior book in the series insofar as the chef has a strng relationship with the president's son. I have to admit, while fondue briefly comes into the plot, I am not entirely sure why this is the book's title, and this despite the anxious-father-wants-son-to-be-interested-in-something-other-than-cooking aspect of the plot. (And that adjectival hyphenation may be the longest this blog every sees).
Let's see. Good aspects of this particular mystery: the need to have romantic tension does not unduly drive the plot. Also, the plot is not one of those where you feel like asking how these amateurs stumble upon so much crime in one locale. (Though the setting being DC and the White House provides some cover on this issue, unlike, say, Jessica Fletcher and Cabot Cove; if you have that small a population, how can you have so much murder?) Also, I do think Hyzy does a reasonable job of showing the relationship between our formidable chef and the son of the president; in fact, the son seems quite like a little kid as I imaginen him in such a world. What else? [SPOILER ALERT -- which, by the way, is one of the phrases some have wanted to toss from the language in 2013] I liked the way the book provides back story for the main character by investigating issues regardign her father's death, his dishonourable discharge from the military, and his burial in Arlington Cemetery. Of course, it was a tad obvious from this combination of things that he was somehow under cover at the time of his death, but the details were interesting to see develop across the span of the book.
There are a few (??!?!?!) moments that stretch credibility -- though what is the point of mysteries other than allowing us to suspend our disbelief? I admit, though, I am not convinced [GIGANTIC SPOILER ALERT] that [OK TRYING TO CONTROL MYSELF SO WILL BE VAGUE] that Olivia will be able to keep the promise she makes toward the end of the book. Really?
Ok, nitpicking. I truly enjoyed this as always with Hyzy's books. One thing I did like is that there is a lot of development of Olivia's relationships with some of her professional peers -- making obvious that one need not like everyone in order to work well with them, on the one hand, and in a truly "we are in a novel way" ensuring that the truly irritating do not rise to the top. And, I think there is a tiny little endge here of politics (hence this is also characterized as sublimation nation) insofar as the bad guys are pretty darn bad.
This is her sixth of this series. I wonder where she will go next? Will Olivia get married? (Hmmm.) Will she go on a cruise? Will she make fois gras?