Friday, June 27, 2014

Book Review: Tempest in a Teapot

Tempest in a TeapotAuthor: Amanda Cooper
Publication Date: June 3, 2014
Publisher: Berkley
Series: Teapot Collector Mystery # 1

Tucked away in the Finger Lakes region of Upstate New York is the charming town of Gracious Grove, where time moves slowly, gossip spreads quickly, and the scones are to die for…

When her fashionable Manhattan restaurant goes under, Sophie Taylor retreats to her grandmother’s cozy shop, Auntie Rose’s Victorian Teahouse, where serenity is steeped to perfection in one of her many antique teapots. The last thing Sophie expects is a bustling calendar of teahouse events, like her old friend Cissy Peterson’s upcoming bridal shower.

Not everyone is pleased with the bride-to-be’s choice of venue—like Cissy’s grandmother, who owns a competing establishment, La Belle Epoque, and has held a long-simmering grudge against Rose for stealing her beau sixty years ago. Tensions reach a boiling point when Cissy’s fiancé’s mother dies while sampling scones at La Belle Epoque. Now, to help her friend, Sophie will have to bag a killer before more of the guest list becomes a hit list…

Gretchen Harcourt’s beautiful face had a frozen look, like botox meets bad temper.

“You finally did it,” Francis said, lifting his face and glaring at the senior owner of Belle Époque. “You finally killed someone with your awful food.”

She desperately wanted to rush in and ease people’s suffering. That part of her personality had made both life and work difficult at times.

Sophie Taylor has decided, after losing her job of course, that the bustling, busy streets of Manhattan are no longer for her, and she decides to return home to the small, quiet town of Gracious Grove. Here Sophie’s grandmother operates a tea room called Auntie Rose’s Victorian Tea House, and it is all the rage for booking social gatherings and bridal luncheons. Sophie comes back and decides that she would like to help her grandmother in the tea room. Her first task is to host the tea party being thrown in honor of her childhood friend, Cissy’s, upcoming nuptials. Cissy’s grandmother, Thelma, who runs a rival tea room across town is not happy when her granddaughter chooses Rose’s tearoom over her own. During all the chaos that is bound to ensure between Thelma and Rose, Cissy’s future mother-in-law, Vivienne Whitaker, suddenly collapses and dies while eating a scrumptious cupcake. It is soon discovered that the cupcake was poisoned, and Sophie knows that she must take it upon herself to help her friend and solve this mystery!

This mystery was superb because there is a long list of potential suspects who would kill, literally, to see Ms. Vivienne Whitaker bite the dust. This mystery kept me guessing the entire way through. I was very intrigued by Vivienne’s character because it seemed that a lot of people despised her for many reasons. And not just that, but also the apparent feud between Rose and Thelma that we soon find out has been going on for years. Their rivalry is hysterical and added a lot more drama to the mystery as well.

Gracious Grove is the perfect setting for a series like this. It is a small town and everyone knows how things get around in small towns. It was also a perfect setup for the tea room because you could tell how much everyone in town really appreciated the tea room and that business was apparently booming. I always love the comfort that small towns bring in books. Everyone, usually, is willing to help and pitch in and most of the characters in this book were no different. Plus the tea room really made me want a cup of tea for myself! Great start to a debut series!

***A free copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at Berkley in exchange for my honest review***

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like a really great new series. I love those quotes too. Botox meets bad temper...hysterical!