I love chocolate. No surprise to those who know me. I adore dark chocolate—at least 70% and Belgian, of course. I have been known to venture into Swiss and German chocolates but my fave is still Belgian. I like my dark chocolate plain and ready to break into pieces that don’t make your cheeks bulge when you pop it into your mouth. I even like it with an apricot or slice or candied orange peel or fat tart cherry or even a pecan or almond tucked inside. I’m not fond of creams but I will sample and I do inhale dark chocolate truffles. Victoria’s “Dutch Bakery” and “Terrible Truffles” makes the best.
So I was really amazed when I dived into a mystery book where the heroine popped chocolates like a drug. She wasn’t that discerning a chocoholic but she ate chocolates as she went about solving her case. In another book, Nicola Furlong’s “Teed Off” has her protagonist, Riley Quinn, also diving into chocolates—“Rogers,” one of Victoria’s best. It helps that Nicola is also a chocoholic connoisseur. My protagonist is a private eye named Newton Figby, who has to have a continuous chocolate fix in order to boot up his flavenols to nourish his brain cells. Newton knows his sources of chocolate baked goods and of course, dark Belgian chocolates. Janet Evanovich and Lee Goldberg’s fun collaboration of FBI agent Kate O’Hare and international thief/conman, Nicholas Fox reveals Kate’s passion for Toblerone chocolates. JoAnna Carl’s character, Lee McKinney Woodyard who is the owner of “TenHuis Chocolade,” uses her chocolate shop as the backdrop for her amateur sleuth. Nancy Coco’s heroine, Allie McMurphy who operates Mackinac Island’s “Historic McMurphy Hotel and Fudge Shop includes some awesome fudge recipes in her books “To Fudge or Not to Fudge” and “All Fudged Up.”
And hey, remember you write what you know so Charlaine Harris, Nancy J. Parra (aka Nancy Coco) and R.E. Hargrave are a few chocoholics, whom I visualize nibbling their chocolate treats at their computers while crafting their chocolate inspired protagonists.
There are even websites such as Janet Rudolph’s chocolate news, reviews and recipes found at http://dyingforchocolate.blogspot.ca and a fun site for interactive murder mysteries (for a price) at http://murderbychocolate.net.
However in my search for chocoholic writers and their protagonists, I did find an exception. Daryl Wood Gerber, who writes mystery cosies as Avery Ames. Her amateur sleuth, Charlotte Bessette owns “The Cheese Shop” in Providence, Ohio. Charlotte not only knows her cheeses but is passionate in seeking justice for those unjustly accused.. Her books, such as “Days of Wine and Roquefort”, “Lost and Fondue”, or “To Brie or Not to Brie” even includes tasty cheese recipes. And the reason I include this writer is her fabulous recipe for “Choco Socko Cheesecake” which includes chocolate in the ingredients. Check out http://www.averyames.com/choco_socko_cheesecake.html
Now excuse me while I search for my stash of dark Belgian chocolate. I seem to have developed this powerful craving. . .