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Publisher's Summary

Death at a beauty pageant turns Tita Rosie's Kitchen upside down in the latest entry of this witty and humorous cozy-mystery series by Mia P. Manansala.

Things are heating up for Lila Macapagal. Not in her love life, which she insists on keeping nonexistent despite the attention of two very eligible bachelors. Or her professional life, since she can't bring herself to open her new café after the unpleasantness that occurred a few months ago at her aunt's Filipino restaurant, Tita Rosie's Kitchen. No, things are heating up quite literally, since summer, her least favorite season, has just started. 

To add to her feelings of sticky unease, Lila's little town of Shady Palms has resurrected the Miss Teen Shady Palms Beauty Pageant, which she won many years ago - a fact that serves as a wedge between Lila and her cousin-slash-rival, Bernadette. But when the head judge of the pageant is murdered and Bernadette becomes the main suspect, the two must put aside their differences and solve the case - because it looks like one of them might be next.

©2022 Mia P. Manansala (P)2022 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about Homicide and Halo-Halo

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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Still really enjoyable!

I really missed having all the “calendar” aunties in this book, but overall I think it was a solid follow up to the first book. I think it was a tad rushed and I wish the mental health aspects would have been covered more, BUT I know that this was written in the lockdown pandemic so I get it! I love these characters and the sweet community and hope we can hear more from her soon!

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Good Mystery

Lila is opening a bakery with her best friend, Elena. The day of the soft opening Lila must judge a beauty pageant. Of course, there's a murder and Lila has to solve it. I like this book. I like that the author includes her culture and heritage in the book. I liked the nana's and the main characters, they make me laugh. I listened to this book, the narrator was excellent. I like that as soon as the start the audio I'm hooked. I can't wait til the next book comes out.

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So-so

I was looking forward to reading this book after the first one. The narration this time seemed off. It sounds like she was struggling to get her words out, or maybe that was the intent, since the focus was on mental health. I liked the twist at the end though.

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Quick, light and fun listen

I liked this book as a sequel. You get to learn a lot more about Lila and some of her 'whys' and you have a whole lot of folks helping out throughout the book to gather info/inverstigate. Maybe improbable that the detective asks everyone for help in one breath and then says don't spread or share stories but I didn't put that much stock into it. Good for a light, fun and quick listen. Interested in what future adventures everyone gets into.

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Too many details that don’t add to the story arch

Great attempt at inclusion in this story, but there were so many details that were general observations that they became distracting. I LOVED the first book from this series and struggled with this one, had to speed up the reading to get through it and drifted off often. The story could have been much better had the details pertained to the story arch instead of what often felt like forcing observations in.

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Loved just as much as the first book!

This book picks up right where Arsenic and Adobo ended...all the same characters, plus some new ones and a new murder to solve! The character conflicts introduced in the first book all develop further and some are resolved. The series promotes equality and identity acceptance of all people with very relevant societal topics. Most importantly, this book series not only is a murder mystery, it is also a beautiful exploration of Filipino culture, food, and family values. If you love food and to travel, you will love the multiculturalism that Manansala promotes in the series.

P.S. There is also a small amount of romance :) I CANNOT wait for the third book to come out!

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Proud Pinoy Reader

Love the series and I look forward to more. Filipino details on food is well researched.
Although I think the Aunties' diction could be improved, they do sound like that sometimes.

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Love

Love this series! makes me actually want to cook, which isn't something I do. Great storytelling!

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Fun and Entertaining

I appreciate the author addressing mental health in the book. Not many are successful mixing a serious topic within a funny clever book. A added bonus to this book are the recipes in the last chapter like in “Adobo and Arsenic.” This book reminds me of “Like Water for Chocolate.” Another book worth reading. Thank you Mia, your books keep me company during long drives and chores. Can’t wait for your next one. I hope you keep Denice as the narrator.

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Highly Entertaining

Homicide and Halo-Halo is a highly entertaining cozy mystery with engaging characters and an interesting plot. I look forward to the next book.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 04-29-22

Excellent Narration!

Thoroughly enjoyed listening to this audio book. Glad Mia was able to touch on the topic of mental health and how it is seen within Filipino culture. Hamilton references are always plus too.

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  • Ana
  • 02-17-22

Another great story from Lila and friends

I appreciated the author's note at the beginning where she says she was also struggling through the pandemic like the rest of us.
Lila got herself into a little less trouble this time, but still managed to come out of this bruised and shaken up. A great story overall, but felt a bit out of sync, the events felt glued together by sheer force and the whole story had a weird flow to it, very uncoordinated somehow.

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  • Bibliophile Mom
  • 02-23-22

Fun-filled & Light Read

Homicide & Halo-Halo is the 2nd instalment of the Tita Rosie's Kitchen Mystery by Mia P. Manansala. I really enjoyed the 1st book in this series which I read last year via audiobook (Audible). This series makes me miss my home country so much - it's full of Filipino references including food & desserts. You will definitely get hungry whilst delving into this fun-filled and light mystery/thriller. The characters are bubbly and very relatable most especially "The Aunties" of the main character - they are the epitome of you usual 40's-50's auntie who gets involved with your affairs back home! It's so funny and refreshing - it's highly recommended if you would like to know more of the Filipino culture. It's very family oriented and readers of all ages will definitely have fun with Lila Macapagal's life at Shady Palms.

Liked:
❥ Fast-paced
❥ Filipino food focused
❥ Relatable characters

Disliked:
❥ Was hoping more on Lia's love life
❥ Not much character development with Lila
❥ Bernadette's competitive nature which reminds me of home

Setting: 5⭐️
Character Building: 4⭐️
Writing Style: 4⭐️
Message: 5⭐️
Overall: 4⭐️

Overall, it was a fast-paced contemporary book with a twist of murder & crime (Nancy Drew like) but in a light and fun way. I'm looking forward to the next book end of this year! Recommended to mystery readers of all ages.

Instagram: @BibliophileMom

~JaNnA~