Ming Tea Murder
A Tea Shop Mystery #16
Berkley Prime Crime, March 2015
Theodosia Browning and the rest of her crew at the Indigo Tea Shop are back for another go at solving a murder—if she can beat Detective Tidwell to it.
This time around, Theo’s boyfriend, Max, who is public relations honcho at the Gibbes museum, is fired when a wealthy contributor is murdered inside a display Max had advocated. He is a suspect in the murder, which has taken place in the middle of the gala opening of a Chinese teahouse exhibit. When Detective Tidwell’s investigation moves too slowly for Theo, she is compelled to take a hand.
As we’ve come to expect of an Indigo Tea Shop mystery, the murder seems to play second fiddle to the business of running a popular tea shop. Tea, food, and friendship fill more pages than the sleuthing. Still, it is interesting how criminal activity seems to permeate Charleston high society—in fiction, that is.
If I have one complaint, it is that there’s not much chemistry between Theodosia and Max. I often wonder what she sees in him. Also, although Theo and some of the other characters are supposed to be young, vibrant people, they strike me as being at least a generation older than they are. Some seem almost like caricatures. Still, the mystery always intrigues, the tea and food sounds elegant, and it is fun to visit for a few hundred pages with the cream of society.
Reviewed by Carol Crigger, November 2015.
Author of Three Seconds to Thunder.