Reviews

Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

A week before Christmas, Charleston society is shocked by the murder of one of their own.Tea shop owner Theodosia Browning and her sommelier, Drayton Conneley, are catering a Victorian-themed party at the home of wealthy and beloved society doyenne Miss Drucilla when their client is murdered almost before their eyes, her rings stripped from her fingers, and a valuable Renoir stolen. Theodosia has plenty of experience with murder and a fairly good relationship with grouchy Detective Burt Tidwell. Even though he prefers that she stay out of his investigations, she cant ignore the pleas of Miss Drucillas assistant to investigate and does some snooping between putting on several fabulous Christmas-themed tea parties. Most of Miss Drucillas money was earmarked for various charities jockeying for her attention. With her police officer boyfriend out of town, Theodosia finds herself unprotected when her sleuthing apparently attracts the killers attention, and she has some narrow escapes. With Drayton as her reluctant sidekick, she uses all her contacts to help dig up some motives. In the end her investigation literally goes to the dogs, who may be the most gifted sleuths of all.A mystery overflowing with local color, holiday charm, appended recipes, and plans for themed parties. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Kirkus
Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

A week before Christmas, Charleston society is shocked by the murder of one of their own. Tea shop owner Theodosia Browning and her sommelier, Drayton Conneley, are catering a Victorian-themed party at the home of wealthy and beloved society doyenne Miss Drucilla when their client is murdered almost before their eyes, her rings stripped from her fingers, and a valuable Renoir stolen. Theodosia has plenty of experience with murder and a fairly good relationship with grouchy Detective Burt Tidwell. Even though he prefers that she stay out of his investigations, she can’t ignore the pleas of Miss Drucilla’s assistant to investigate and does some snooping between putting on several fabulous Christmas-themed tea parties. Most of Miss Drucilla’s money was earmarked for various charities jockeying for her attention. With her police officer boyfriend out of town, Theodosia finds herself unprotected when her sleuthing apparently attracts the killer’s attention, and she has some narrow escapes. With Drayton as her reluctant sidekick, she uses all her contacts to help dig up some motives. In the end her investigation literally goes to the dogs, who may be the most gifted sleuths of all. A mystery overflowing with local color, holiday charm, appended recipes, and plans for themed parties. Copyright © Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Publishers Weekly
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

With several Christmas-themed teas booked for the month, Theodosia Browning, owner of the Indigo Tea Shop in Charleston, S.C., is looking forward to a busy December, in Childs’s uneven 23rd Tea Shop mystery (after Haunted Hibiscus). The season gets off to an inauspicious start, however, when Theodosia discovers 85-year-old Drucilla Heyward dead at the society woman’s own charity fundraiser, her diamond rings stripped off her fingers and a priceless Renoir painting missing. Miss Drucilla’s personal assistant asks Theodosia for help figuring out whodunit, so between Christmas catering jobs, Theodosia and her ever-patient tea sommelier, Drayton Conneley, question witnesses and snoop for clues, do a little light breaking and entering, dodge a few bullets, and dig up an extra body the police seem to have missed. Theodosia’s appealing tea shop, the warm ambiance of Charleston at Christmastime, and the fabulous recipes Child includes at the end help compensate for the unconvincing plot and Theodosia’s annoying conviction that she’s a better investigator than the police. Cozy lovers will be hungry for more. Agent: Sam Pinkus, Keystone Literary. (Oct.)


Library Journal
(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

In Charleston, tea maven Theodosia Browning and her tea sommelier, Drayton Conneley, are catering a Victorian Christmas party for the absurdly wealthy Drucilla Heyward, who's got something up her haute couture sleeve. At the event, she intends to announce that she will donate her wealth to various charities. Alas, her plans are waylaid when someone neatly sticks a syringe in her neck, and Theodosia has her hands full of more than mince pies.


Book list
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

Theodosia Browning, owner of Charleston’s Indigo Tea Shop, is ready to serve the food at the ultra-wealthy philanthropist Drucilla Heyward’s Christmas party when she finds the hostess dead, her fingers stripped of her diamond rings and a Renoir missing from the wall. Theo, along with her tea sommelier and chef, admirers of the philanthropist, investigate at the request of her personal assistant Pauline Stauber. A handyman, a neighbor, and an art dealer are just the beginning of the list of suspects, which eventually includes Pauline herself. Between offering a series of holiday-themed teas, running her shop, and fostering a rowdy group of dogs, Theo plows forward with her sleuthing. Framed by its lovingly described Charleston setting, warm holiday atmosphere, tea lore, and delicious food, this entry in Childs' long-running cozy series concludes with recipes and tips for hosting specialty teas. Pair this one with Kate Kingsbury’s debut tea-shop mystery, In Hot Water (2021).

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