French Roast
by Sandra Balzo

Things go from bad to worse for Wisconsin coffeehouse owner Maggy Thorsen when her cousin Jacque Oui finds himself in hot water.

Coffeehouse owner Maggy Thorsen’s cousin, Jacque Oui, is in trouble. Big trouble! Not only is his cash-strapped Schultz’s Market facing competition from a big bucks grocery chain, but his supposedly ex-wife Paulette has arrived from Paris, spectacularly claiming that she and Jacque are still married, despite Jacque being engaged to Maggy’s friend and star barista Amy Caprese.

Maggy is keen to avoid this troubling brew – until a huge fire rips through Schultz’s Market and a gruesome discovery is made in the store’s flat, reluctantly drawing her into Jacque’s affairs. But where is he? With her cousin suddenly missing, can Maggy uncover the truth behind the disturbing events triggered by Pauline’s arrival, or is she about to be scorched by a determined killer?


“The body count rises quickly as Balzo’s quirky cozy turns darker than a freshly brewed espresso”

Kirkus Reviews

“Vividly drawn characters and dialogue crackling with wit propel the fair-play plot”

Publishers Weekly

“Balzo’s latest will keep readers on their toes . . . Solid cozy fare”


“Connecting murders past and present provides a welcome challenge for coffeehouse cozy fans”

Kirkus Reviews on The Big Steep

“Lively, intelligent characters and Maggy’s refreshingly anxiety-free relationship with her fiancé, Brookhills County Sheriff Jake Pavlik, make this stand out from the cozy pack. This is a perfect entry point for newcomers'”

Publishers Weekly on The Big Steep

“Numerous plot twists, nicely delineated characters, dry humor, and details of running a coffeehouse define this cozy. Suggest to those who enjoy Laura Childs’ Tea Shop mysteries”

Booklist on Flat White

“Readers who like their heroines on the spunky side will enjoy Maggy’s company”

Publishers Weekly on Flat White

Sandra Balzo

Sandra Balzo built an impressive career as a public relations consultant before authoring the successful ‘Maggy Thorsen’ coffeehouse mysteries, the first of which, Uncommon Grounds, was published to stellar reviews and nominated for an Anthony and Macavity Award. She is also the author of the ‘Main Street Murders’ mystery series published by Severn House.

View author page


French Roast by Sandra Balzo is available in the following formats

Hardback97814483067326th December 2022145 X 225mm208$29.99
Hardback97814483067326th December 2022145 X 225mm208£20.99
Ebook97814483067706th December 2022N/A224$14.99
Ebook97814483067706th December 2022N/A224£7.99
Hardback - Large Print978144831276427th February 2024145 X 225mm288$38.99
Hardback - Large Print978144831276428th December 2023145 X 225mm288£23.99
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