Basil Instinct

Basil Instinct

In this second cozy mystery series that started with You Cannoli Die Once, a chef and her cousins launch their own investigation when a new sous chef turns up dead in their Italian restaurant.When Chef Eve Angelotta’s grandmother, Maria Pia, is invited to join Belfiere, a secret all-female Italian culinary society, Eve is concerned. Rumor has it that membership is l...

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Title:Basil Instinct
Author:Shelley Costa
Rating:
Edition Language:English

Basil Instinct Reviews

  • LORI CASWELL

    When Chef Eve Angelotta’s grandmother, Maria Pia, is invited to join Belfiere, a secret all-female Italian culinary society, Eve is concerned. Rumor has it that membership is lifelong—whether you like it or not. Eve and her cousin Landon try to research Belfiere, but all they come up with is a two-year-old blog entry warning against the two-hundred-year-old society that centers around meals inspired by famous female poisoners.

    Soon after, Eve’s new sous chef turns up dead just inside

    When Chef Eve Angelotta’s grandmother, Maria Pia, is invited to join Belfiere, a secret all-female Italian culinary society, Eve is concerned. Rumor has it that membership is lifelong—whether you like it or not. Eve and her cousin Landon try to research Belfiere, but all they come up with is a two-year-old blog entry warning against the two-hundred-year-old society that centers around meals inspired by famous female poisoners.

    Soon after, Eve’s new sous chef turns up dead just inside the front door of Miracolo, Eve’s restaurant. When they discover the sous chef had connections to Belfiere, Eve and her Italian cousins start a mission to find out what happened—before Maria Pia is made an offer she can’t refuse.

    Dollycas’s Thoughts

    This crazy Italian family is back and with their new sous chef dropping dead in the restaurant foyer and a big party coming up the story turns into scenes similar to the movie Weekend at Bernie’s. Oh my, this story was hilarious. Add to that a strange group of chefs and their weird rituals, Eve’s community college delinquents and murder investigation and you have a fantastic story.

    Some of these characters take eclectic to a whole new level. Mrs. Crawford, the pianist that sets the restaurants atmosphere, continues to crack me up again and again. Maria Pia with her nightly Three Coins in the Fountain performances just add to the fun. “You have to give the people what they want.” Eve and Landon try to keep the eatery under control but let’s face it they are fighting an uphill battle.

    Costa has woven a very creative mystery amongst all the humor. Eve really has the best intentions but she sure gets herself in trouble. She follows those clues wherever they lead and always thinks if she gets caught she can talk her way out of it but that doesn’t always work. She gets herself into the pesto several times and keeps the reader on their toes.

    This was a fun read and I was truly craving Italian food when I finished it. Too bad there isn’t a restaurant like Miracolo nearby sans the dead body, of course.

  • Mark Baker

    Eve's Nonna has been invited to join a top secret society of top chef's. Nonna is thrilled, but Eve has her doubts about the mysterious group. However, when disaster strikes on Nonna's big day, can Eve deal with the fall out?

    There are a few too many characters to keep them all straight, although the ones important to the story stand out. The plot keeps moving forward well. But what surprised me was the comedy. I laughed the entire way through as the characters did and said some prett

    Eve's Nonna has been invited to join a top secret society of top chef's. Nonna is thrilled, but Eve has her doubts about the mysterious group. However, when disaster strikes on Nonna's big day, can Eve deal with the fall out?

    There are a few too many characters to keep them all straight, although the ones important to the story stand out. The plot keeps moving forward well. But what surprised me was the comedy. I laughed the entire way through as the characters did and said some pretty funny things.

    NOTE: I was sent this book in exchange for my honest review.

    Read my full review at

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  • Susan Moxley

    A real page turner with lots of twists and turns and lots of mystery and action to the very end of the book.

  • Cheryl

    This series is shaping up to be a really funny and one of my favorite series currently around. I already fell in love with Maria and Eve but I have fallen for them more with this book. Also, another person that I like is Eve's cousin, Landon. I can't remember if he was in the first book but he is making sure he stands in the spotlight this time.

    When Eve and Landon found the dead body of their sous chef and hide it, I could not help but laugh. Then when Eve showed the body to her boyfriend, Joe,

    This series is shaping up to be a really funny and one of my favorite series currently around. I already fell in love with Maria and Eve but I have fallen for them more with this book. Also, another person that I like is Eve's cousin, Landon. I can't remember if he was in the first book but he is making sure he stands in the spotlight this time.

    When Eve and Landon found the dead body of their sous chef and hide it, I could not help but laugh. Then when Eve showed the body to her boyfriend, Joe, it almost was a Weekend at Bernie's moment. I just realized what Eve and Joe remind me of. They are kind of like Lucy and Ricky Ricardo. Eve just moves to the beat of her own drum and sometimes finds herself in over her head. Luckily for her Joe is around to get her out of the predicament that she finds herself in. Which always makes for laughs. I really liked the mystery in this book and the idea of a secret chef cooking society that includes members getting an exclusive tattoo. Which Eve's grandmother, Maria did get. I can't tell you what it is or I might have to kill you. You will just have to get a copy of this book for yourself to learn what it is. You will not be disappointed.

  • Zoe

    I've just finished Basil Instinct (Italian Restaurant Mystery, #2) by Shelley Costa which I really enjoyed. It's a humorous mystery with an italian flair that revolves around Miracolo, an Italian family-owned restaurant in Pennsylvania. Eve Angelotta, the main character has plenty in common with Janet Evanovitch's Stephanie Plum and is surrounded, as it usually happens in cozy mysteries, by a group of quirky and zany characters. The mystery's resolution was totally unexpected and I didn't figure

    I've just finished Basil Instinct (Italian Restaurant Mystery, #2) by Shelley Costa which I really enjoyed. It's a humorous mystery with an italian flair that revolves around Miracolo, an Italian family-owned restaurant in Pennsylvania. Eve Angelotta, the main character has plenty in common with Janet Evanovitch's Stephanie Plum and is surrounded, as it usually happens in cozy mysteries, by a group of quirky and zany characters. The mystery's resolution was totally unexpected and I didn't figure it out until the end of the book. Unfortunately, it seems that there are no more installments in this series and it's a shame in my humble opinion, because I would've loved to share a few more adventures with Eve.

  • Nancy M

    Fun read!

  • Terri

    I loved this book - and the two book series. Great characters. Wishing on a Star the author writes more. Just change it up so murder victim doesn’t die in restaurant.

  • Bea

    3 - 3.5 stars I liked The Trouble with Harry routine.

  • Dlora

    A light cozy murder mystery whose strengths like in the characters and setting, but definitely not in the realistic solving of a murder. I enjoyed the strong flavor of Italian personalities and Italian cooking. Lots of great behind-the-scenes adventures running and cooking in a family restaurant. Solving the mystery is kicked to motivation since our heroes have messed up the murder scene royally, in a comedy of errors, right from the beginning. As suspects are investigated we learn about a secre

    A light cozy murder mystery whose strengths like in the characters and setting, but definitely not in the realistic solving of a murder. I enjoyed the strong flavor of Italian personalities and Italian cooking. Lots of great behind-the-scenes adventures running and cooking in a family restaurant. Solving the mystery is kicked to motivation since our heroes have messed up the murder scene royally, in a comedy of errors, right from the beginning. As suspects are investigated we learn about a secret society of women chefs and unexpected family lore. Humor and being Italian are in the mix but not much tension or police involvement (just what were they doing while Eve Angelotta is solving the mystery?). My favorite line in the story, striking a chord of truth that transcends the cozy mystery: "The kind of hell that can break loose has a real measure of subtlety. The crack in the ice, the one drink too many, the casual fib. Hell starts small."

  • Karen

    I'm surprised to be giving a Shelley Costa book one star, but I couldn't get past the first chapter in this one. I was hoping it would be better than the first in the series, & that the title would be the worst thing about it, but it was silly and the characters were tiresome. I given up on this series, and hope there are some more Val Cameron ones forthcoming.

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