A Whole Latte Murder is the third book in the Java Jive Mystery series by Caroline Fardig and is currently scheduled for release on November 8 2016. While the character and personality dynamics are laid down in the previous books, I think the actual mystery portion of this book will be accessible to readers weather or not that are up to date with the series. If you want to understand the love lives of the main players, then you will need to read the books in order. The first book is Death Before Decaf and the second book is Mug Shot.
Juliet's personal and professional lives have recently received an extra jolt of energy. Her romance with the hunky detective Ryder Hamilton continues to simmer, and business at Java Jive has never been better. But her good mood quickly turns as stale as day-old espresso when she finds out that Ryder has been promoted to his precinct's homicide division. With him risking his life to catch the worst kind of criminals, Juliet's growing sense of unease ignites when a local college student goes missing. Suddenly every Nashville resident is on high alert, especially Juliet's neighbor Chelsea. Juliet does her best to calm the girl's nerves, but her worst fears are confirmed when she finds Chelsea dead. Even though she tries her best to stay out of it, Juliet's involvement puts a strain on Ryder's first homicide case. The situation soon becomes even more personal for Juliet and her best friend Pete Bennett when one of their employees disappears during her shift. As a killer lurks in the shadows, Juliet, Pete, and Ryder seek out a double shot of justice.
A Whole Latte Murder is quick moving with lots of changes for Juliet. Once again Juliet stumbles across a dead body, investigates with well meaning friends, irritates or beguiles the police, and gets herself in a whole pile of trouble. I like that Juliet continues to grow and change as a character, getting more mindful of how her investigation might effect those around her- and fearing for the safety of others more than for herself. I liked that several relationship questions are raised, examined, and dealt with during the book- although there is plenty of room for further changes in that front. I like that despite the danger, and general insanity that seems to surrounds Juliet, she talks to people and hashes out problems rather than just letting them fester or magically disappear. There are some exceptions, but she seems to be taking more and more responsibility for her actions and relationships. She is just as flawed and imperfect as the rest of us, but she is willing to admit it- even if she does not want to. As a bonus, I did not guess the full extent of the final twists, and was glad to be somewhat surprised by the big reveal, and then a few more times as everyone had to survive the ordeal. A fast, fun, and exciting read.