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    The 19th A Tea Shop Mystery

    Plum Tea Crazy by Laura Childs is the nineteenth story in A Tea Shop Mystery series. Theodosia “Theo” Browning owns the Indigo Tea Shop in Charleston, South Carlson. Theo is aided by her tea sommelier, Drayton Conneley and chef, Haley Parker. Drayton and Theo are enjoying the Gaslights and Galleons Parade from the widow’s walk of Timothy Neville’s Archdale Street mansion. When the cannon volleys begin a scream rings out, and Carson Lanier slides down the roof to his death atop a fleur-de-lis fence finial. Upon inspection of Carson’s body, it is discovered he was shot by a quarrel (type of arrow used in a crossbow) which caused him to tumble over the railing of the widow’s walk. Timothy requests that Theo use her skills to investigate Carson’s murder. It turns out that there are several viable suspects that include a protestor of the upcoming antique firearms display at the Heritage Society, Carson’s estranged wife, a co-worker, and the manager of a local bed-and-breakfast. Who shot Carson and why? Theo works in her sleuthing in between working at the tea shop, handling catering gigs, taking care of Earl Grey, and specialty tea events they have scheduled at the Indigo Tea Shop. The killer, though, does not appreciate Theo’s snooping and attempts to dissuade her (the person evidently does not know Theo). Will Theo be able to expose the guilty party before she ends up the next victim? Plum Tea Crazy may be the 19th book in the series, but it can be read alone. I do, though, highly recommend reading each book in this charming cozy mystery series. A Tea Shop Mystery series is one of the first cozy mystery series I discovered. I found the books in my local bookstore (before e-books) and quickly devoured Death by Darjeeling. I then returned to the store and purchased the other books in the series that were out at the time. I look forward to a new book in this series each year. Plum Tea Crazy is well-written, has a steady pace and engaging. I love when I am drawn into the books world as I was with Plum Tea Crazy. The book contains delightful characters that are well established, and they continue to grow as the series progresses. Theo is an intelligent woman who is warm, thoughtful and has a big heart. I like the interactions between Theo, Haley, Drayton and Earl Grey is just adorable. The only character that I dislike is Delaine Dish. She is overbearing, pushy, annoying and seemed a little off balance (she grates on my nerves) in this book. Delaine is one of those people that can only be taken in small doses. The setting of Savannah, South Carolina sounds just lovely. Laura Childs provides beautiful descriptions of the area, homes, the featured stores and the Indigo Tea Shop. The mystery is complex, and it will perplex readers. There is a clue to the killer’s identity, but you will need a keen eye to spot it. The book contains delectable food and tea descriptions. I especially enjoyed the cozy moments in Plum Tea Crazy. I did feel that Plum Tea Crazy needed an epilogue to tie up all the loose threads (details seemed to be lacking). There are recipes and tea tips at the end of the book as well as a preview of Glitter Bomb. Plum Tea Crazy is an engaging, light hearted cozy mystery that will delight fans of Laura Childs.

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