USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bruns lives in Upstate New York with a male dominated household that consists of her very patient husband, three sons, and assorted cats and dogs. She has wanted to be a writer since the age of eight when she wrote her own version of Cinderella (fortunately Disney never sued). Catherine holds a B.A. in English and is a member of Mystery Writers of America and Sisters in Crime.
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Cookies & Chance Mysteries
Tastes Like Murder
Cookies & Chance Mysteries book #1
Sally Muccio's had her crosses to bear: a cheating ex-boyfriend, crazy Italian parents, and an unfaithful husband, just to name a few. After her divorce, she returns to her hometown to start a novelty cookie shop whose specialties include original fortune cookies, served with a sprinkle of foreshadowing. But there's no warning when her ex-husband's mistress drops dead on Sal's porch, and police confirm it's a homicide. Determined to stop her life from becoming a recipe for disaster, Sal takes matters into her own hands. With two very different men vying for her affection, dead bodies piling up, and a reputation hanging by an apron string, Sal finds herself in a race against time to save both her business and life—before the last cookie crumbles.
Baked to Death
Cookies & Chance Mysteries book #2
Baker turned reluctant amateur sleuth, Sally Muccio's, finally found the happiness that's eluded her for years. She's in love with a great guy, her bakery is thriving, and now she and her best friend Josie Sullivan are gearing up to appear on the popular reality baking show, Cookie Crusades. But a visit from Sal's greedy ex-husband Colin, who's looking to cash in on the bakery's dough, changes everything. Within a few hours Sal's world—like the shop's original fortune cookies—is broken apart when Colin turns up dead, and her boyfriend's arrested for the crime. Now Sal's mixing it up with vengeful ex-inlaws, a suspicious new employee, slippery baking competitors, and a greasy mobster who'll stop at nothing to collect on Colin's unpaid debt. Can Sal prove her man is innocent in time? Or is she about to get baked herself?
Burned to a Crisp
Cookies & Chance Mysteries book #3
Just when things appear to be going well for baker and sometime sleuth, Sally Muccio, life turns up the heat again.
It's summertime, and the living is easy for the Muccio clan. Sal's wedding to her beloved fiancé is rapidly approaching, Mom's won a beauty contest, and sister Gianna is now a licensed public defender. But when the bakery Sal's worked so hard for goes up in smoke—along with her dreams!—she's not sure how much more she can stand. Even worse, the man found dead in the bakery's back room is none other than Gianna's latest client, Bernardo Napoli.
The dough really hits the fan for Sal and Josie when they're forced to temporarily relocate their bakery to the crazy Muccio home. Trouble is quickly stirred up as the best friend team must now contend with Sal's father and his new mortuary business "undertakings," a middle aged mother parading around customers in bikinis, and an Italian family hell bent on revenge. For Sal, several questions demand answers. Where has Gianna disappeared to? What role did she play in Bernardo's death? What secret is Sal's fiancé hiding from her? Sal is determined to find answers...before she gets burned once again!
Frosted With Revenge
Cookies & Chance Mysteries book #4
Sally Muccio's walk down the aisle might be her last.
The some-time amateur sleuth and full-time bakery owner is finally marrying the man of her dreams. But during a last minute taste testing of their wedding cake, Sally and her fiancé are witnesses—and almost victims!—of a random shooting. At least they think it's random, until an original fortune cookie message proves otherwise. Is someone after Sally? And why does the mysterious shooter want to ice the baker? Sal tries to proceed with caution, but when someone close to her is attacked, all bets are off. She'll do whatever it takes to bring this monster to justice, even if it means sacrificing herself in the process.
Can Sal make it to the church on time...and alive?
Silenced by Sugar
Cookies & Chance Mysteries book #5
Full-time baker and sometime-sleuth Sally Muccio is enjoying life as a new bride and only wishes that sales in her bakery would pick up. So when popular TV host Donna Dooley invites her and best friend, Josie, to be guests on Someone's in the Kitchen with Donna, it's the answer to their prayers. The pair is excited about the opportunity until they discover Donna's new assistant is none other than Josie's former nemesis from culinary school, Kelly Thompson.
Like cookies in a hot oven, temperatures rise, and their animosity escalates into a food fight during the taping—which then goes viral! But when a dead body is then discovered on the set, fingers immediately point to Josie, and Sal's usual sassy partner is at a loss of how to defend herself. Sal's world is once again plunged into chaos as she attempts to keep her friend out of jail, control a blast from the past that threatens to harm her marriage, and keep her crazy parents at bay as they film a commercial for a funeral home. Already knee deep in dough, Sal discovers a possible link between the current murder and an unsolved one from the past. But she'll have to work fast because a killer is on her trail and determined to silence Sal...forever.
Crumbled to Pieces
Cookies & Chance Mysteries book #6
In need of some quick dough, full-time baker and sometime sleuth Sally Muccio decides to rent the vacant apartment over the bakery to a friend of her grandmother's. Allegra Fiato is nothing like Sal's darling Grandma Rosa, though. She's mean, dishonest, and harboring a deadly secret.
When the elderly woman is mowed down in a hit and run, it quickly becomes obvious this was no accident. Grandma Rosa asks for Sal's help to find the killer which involves a last minute trip to Vegas crashed by Sal's crazy parents, stolen fortune cookies, and a mysterious missing locket. To add more spice to the mix, a loved one makes a startling admission to Sal that shocks her to the very core. Suddenly, Sal's world is in danger of crumbling around her. Can she put the pieces back together in time before the killer makes her the next victim?
Sprinkled in Malice
Cookies & Chance Mysteries book #7
Spring has officially arrived, and while the weather outside may still be frightful, Sally Muccio is feeling especially delightful as she prepares a homemade family dinner in honor of her husband’s birthday. Sal’s determined to make it an unforgettable night for Mike and even includes homemade fortune cookies like the ones her bakery serves, with messages personalized for each guest.
The evening is memorable, but not as Sal had hoped, when Mike and a family friend find themselves in the middle of an armed robbery...and only one will make it out alive. It’s just the beginning of more grief for Sal, who soon discovers the robbery is related to a scheme that spells financial ruin for her family. Add in her morbid father’s book signing at the bakery complete with coffin shaped cookies, a sister who won’t stop eating them, and an accidental gig at a local strip club, and Sal once again finds herself in deep dough. Only this time, there may not be a way out...
Ginger Snapped to Death
Cookies & Chance Mysteries book #8
It’s the most wonderful time of the year…Unless you’re Sally Muccio.
The full-time baker and sometime sleuth is ready to burst into song. She and her husband are expecting a bundle of joy, her sister’s wedding is just around the corner, and it’s Christmas, her favorite time of year. But when Sal’s the victim of a carjacking by Santa himself and a forgotten item links her to a murder, she doesn’t feel like ho-ho-hoing anymore.
Damian Ruger was a drug user, womanizer and first-class jerk. And unfortunately for Sal, she once had a connection to him in high school. The dough really hits the fan when her bakery's gingerbread cookies are found next to his dead body, and Sal's cake server is used as a murder weapon. Someone is trying to frame the expectant mother, but why? Sal has no choice but to try to clear her name...before she and the baby are singing Christmas carols in prison!
Icing on the Casket
Cookies & Chance Mysteries book #9
Full-time baker and sometime sleuth Sally Muccio finally has everything she’s always wanted—a beautiful baby, loving husband, and a thriving business. Now that she’s a mother, Sal has vowed she’ll stay out of future murder investigations. But when her eccentric father’s friend, mortician Eddie Phibbins, is found dead in one of his own caskets, Sal's father begs her to help find the killer.
With their famous coffins cookies in hand, Sal and her best friend Josie “undertake” the process of questioning mourners and employees at the funeral home, hoping for a lead to Eddie’s killer. Between a recently fired hearse driver, resentful family members and a wacky, love-struck makeup artist there’s no shortage of suspects. Once again, Sal’s snooping has attracted the attention of a killer, and her good intentions may have only succeeded in digging herself an early grave…
Knee Deep in Dough
Cookies & Chance Mysteries book #10
For once, baker Sally Muccio’s life isn’t a recipe for disaster. She’s happy to be out celebrating her wedding anniversary... that is until she spies her friend Officer Brian Jenkins with a gorgeous blonde who is not his newlywed wife. The woman's name is Kelsey Sherman, and it turns out she once dated Brian. Which doesn't make Sal feel any better about the situation, but she decides to mind her own business and enjoy her evening.
Only before the night is over Kelsey is dead from a gunshot wound, and Brian is found standing over her body. To make matters worse, the bullet is confirmed to have come from his own gun. Brian swears he had nothing to do with the murder, and Sal believes him, even if the rest of the town’s convinced that he’s a total crumb. With nowhere else to turn, Brian asks for help to prove his innocence. But when the tables turn and someone tries to kill Sal as well, she might come out of this mess battered for life.
Dessert is the Bomb
Cookies & Chance Mysteries book #11
Baker turned sometimes-sleuth Sally Muccio has always loved Halloween, but this year she has more on her mind than ghosts and goblins. In addition to catering a party at her wacky father’s funeral home, a competing bakery has just moved in across the street from Sally’s Samples. The new owner, Celeste Delgado, seems intent on burying Sal’s novelty cookie shop into the ground with her sensational smash cake bombs. Suddenly, the homemade fortune cookies that Sal and her best friend Josie create with loving care are predicting an ominous future for their business.
Before Sal can discover what’s behind Celeste’s grudge, the woman is killed by an explosion. To take the cake, Josie was heard threatening Celeste shortly before her death. A night in the slammer, another deadly explosion, and dangerous family secrets all add to Sal’s growing list of concerns. Like an oven timer, precious minutes of her life are ticking away. Can she find Celeste’s killer before everything blows up in her face?
Seasoned with Murder
Cookies & Chance Mysteries book #12
Full time baker and sometime sleuth Sally Muccio is excited to be traveling on her first cruise along with family and friends. Sal and coworker Josie have been hired to cater desserts for the mortuary event onboard that her father is headlining and are also looking forward to some fun and relaxation in the sun.
But the ship's itinerary doesn't go as planned when the body of Southern belle and galley director Sarah Leigh Walker is discovered in the freezer. To make matters worse, Sal's nemesis, the elderly and cranky Nicoletta Gavelli, is accused of the ice-cold crime after a very public and ugly argument with the victim.
Despite Nicoletta's sharp tongue, Sal knows the woman isn't guilty and would never refuse to help her. With the real killer still cruising the decks, Sal and Josie must work fast to track them down before Nicoletta's last hope sinks faster than the Titanic.
Bake, Batter, and Roll
Cookies & Chance Mysteries book #13
Full time baker and part time sleuth Sally Muccio has witnessed many bizarre events during her lifetime. But one thing that she never expected to see was her sensible grandmother on a dating show.
Senior Moments, the popular reality TV dating show featuring the aged sixty-five and older, has come to Colwestern, New York, giving the mature community a chance to find their soulmate. In an attempt to keep peace with the cranky and cantankerous Nicoletta Gavelli, Sal's Grandma Rosa agrees to become a contestant along with Mrs. Gavelli on the TV show. But things take an even weirder turn when the show’s host, Smiley Jones, is found dead in Sal’s bakery, beaten to death with her rolling pin.
The last thing Sal wants, or needs is to get involved in another murder, but she soon discovers that Smiley Jones's life wasn’t all champagne and cookies. From an estranged wife with dollar signs blinding her vision to a dressing room full of debts, Smiley had many issues to keep him from grinning. Between the calamitous contestants, the stacks of suspects, and the danger mounting, Sal is worried this is one Hollywood production without a happy ending. Can Sal find his killer before she winds up battered as well?
Coming September 26!
Cookies & Chance Mysteries Boxed Set Vol. I(Books 1-3)
From USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bruns comes a boxed set of three full-length mysteries featuring baker turned sleuth Sally Muccio. This boxed set includes the first three novels—and tasty recipes!—from the #1 bestselling Cookies & Chance series, including:
Tastes Like Murder (book #1)
Baked to Death (book #2)
Burned to a Crisp (book #3)
Cookies & Chance Mysteries Boxed Set Vol. II (Books 4-6)
From USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bruns comes a boxed set of the next three exciting mysteries featuring baker turned sleuth Sally Muccio. This boxed set includes three full-length novels—and tasty recipes!—from the #1 bestselling Cookies & Chance series, including:
Frosted With Revenge (book #4)
Silenced by Sugar (book #5)
Crumbled to Pieces (book #6)
Cookies & Chance Mysteries Boxed Set Vol. III (Books 7-9)
From USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bruns comes another boxed set of three exciting mysteries featuring baker turned sleuth Sally Muccio. This boxed set includes three full-length novels—and tasty recipes!—from the #1 bestselling Cookies & Chance series, including:
Sprinkled in Malice (book #7)
Ginger Snapped to Death Sugar (book #8)
Icing on the Casket (book #9)
Aloha Lagoon Mysteries
Death of the Big Kahuna
Aloha Lagoon Mysteries book #6
Sometimes paradise isn't all it's served up to be.
New to both Hawaii and the Aloha Lagoon Resort, Carrie Jorgenson has big dreams of stardom. But while she awaits fame and fortune, she's forced to accept a job waitressing at the resort's The Loco Moco Café. It isn't long before she discovers the dish on her new boss—also known to many as "The Big Kahuna." Hale Akamu is rich, handsome, repulsive...and dead. When Carrie discovers Hale's lifeless body, she's suddenly forced into yet another role—amateur sleuth. With everyone from Carrie to the saucy chef to the café's hot assistant manager under suspicion, Carrie needs to track a killer before she becomes his next main entrée!
Death of the Kona Man
Aloha Lagoon Mysteries book #9
Carrie Jorgenson is living the dream in Hawaii. She has a steady job as a waitress at the Loco Moco Café, a hot new love interest in her manager, and the curtain's about to rise on her role in a local theater production. But when she's asked to deliver food to a guest at the Aloha Lagoon resort—who then drops dead!—her dreams quickly become the stuff of nightmares.
World renowned food critic Randolph Cremshaw has no shortage of enemies. He's rude, patronizing, and famous for his one-star reviews. After the coffee Carrie delivers is discovered to have been poisoned, she and the café quickly rise to the top of the suspects list. A jealous co-worker, thefts at the restaurant, and a performance that threatens to blow up in Carrie's face only make things worse. With an already full plate, Carrie is also forced into making a decision that may change everything for her. But this all pales in comparison when she comes face to face with Randolph's killer and what might be the final curtain call...of her life.
High Heels Mysteries
Jeopardy in High Heels
High Heels Mysteries book #12
I'll take "What is Murder" for $200 please, Alex?
Maddie Springer may know more about fabulous heels than tough trivia, but she's thrilled when her hairdresser-to-the-stars stepfather, Fernando, earns a spot on a celebrity edition of American's favorite game show. But she's not so thrilled when, after taping ends, one of the other contestants dies, the media are suddenly everywhere, and one reporter in particular is threatening to not only point the finger at Fernando, but also expose his biggest secrets to the world!
The victim was Doggy Z, a famous rap artist turned recreational marijuana supporter turned cooking show co-host. And it seems everyone in his life had a reason to want him dead—from the 4 ex-wives he was serially unfaithful to, to his deceptively wholesome looking cooking show co-host, to the network executive seen arguing with Dog just before his death, and even the soap opera star who competed against him on the trivia show. Now it's up to Maddie to sift through the suspects and figure out just which person the rapper may have wronged enough to want him dead. With the help of her Hollywood BFF, her hot homicide detective husband, and her endearingly meddling mom, can Maddie track down a cold blooded killer... before she finds herself in final jeopardy?