Kale to the Queen (Review)

Chef Carrie Ann Cole is about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime–an assignment as the new Personal Chef to the Royal Family at Kensington Palace. But no sooner has Carrie Ann touched down across the pond and donned her apron than a dead body crops up beneath the royal kale beds.

With one assistant dead and the other soon under suspicion for his murder, Carrie Ann is scrambling to keep her kitchen up and running. Not to mention she gets off to an immediate bad start with the tempestuous Royal Chef Butterbottom, who has a bitter taste in his mouth since the prestigious position in the Royal Family’s kitchen was given to an “over-privileged, under-educated American chef.”

But the Royal Family’s appetites wait for no one, and Carrie Ann must solve the murder and still get supper on the table on time–even with the annoyingly handsome Head of Security Ian Gordon tracking her every move like an MI6 agent. Suspects abound as an American chef adds a bit of spice to the traditional royal household in the first in Nell Hampton’s charming and tasty Kensington Palace Chef Mystery series, Kale to the Queen.


I enjoyed this book on and off. The writing was smooth and it was, to me, a quick read but I found myself having trouble believing some of the characters; including the main character. Carrie carries herself like a know it all. She sticks her nose in everyone’s business and shows up on people’s doorsteps unannounced and uninvited without so much of a batted eyelash by anyone questioning her motive.

She has no reason to believe or not to believe the killer is who the police think it is but goes on a “hunch” head first into asking people questions and disregarding evidence.

The best part of the book was reading about all the dishes Carrie was making. The hinted “romance” between her and Ian (the security guard) on the back cover NEVER HAPPENS! In fact, she kisses a total stranger who was only introduced in the book toward the end and for only a max of 4 chapters.

The book was confusing on that point but overall enjoyable enough to finish. I don’t however, believe I will continue on with the rest of the books in the series.



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