Cover Image: Twisted Tea Christmas

Twisted Tea Christmas

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Laura Childs gives us a Charleston Twisted Tea Christmas.  This Teashop Mystery  starts with the murder of an elderly grand dame at her Victorian Christmas party in which a Renoir is stolen.  More suspects than you can think of with a plot like a corkscrew.  Wonderful Christmas tea parties and crime.  Read and enjoy.
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TWISTED TEA CHRISTMAS by Laura Childs
The Twenty Third Tea Shop Mystery 

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas and the citizens of Charleston, South Carolina are ready to party. Theodosia Browning and her tea sommelier and friend, Drayton, are catering an elegant party at the home of Miss Drucilla. Sadly, even before the food is presented, Theo discovers the elderly woman's body. The rings have been taken off her fingers and a Renoir is missing from the wall. When Miss Drucilla's personal assistant practically begs Theo to investigate, how can she say no? But could the young assistant actually be the killer?

The beauty of Christmas is tarnished by the cruel murder of a sprightly and generous doyenne of Charleston in this, the twenty third tea shop mystery. Once again tea shop owner Theodosia manages to investigate a murder while providing charming tea events and entertaining citizens and tourists alike. I liked the variety of suspects and how Theo truly wasn't sure who the killer was for practically the whole book. I admit to catching the clue that revealed the killer well before Theo figured it out, although I still had questions at the end. Although I've never been a fan of Delaine, and I dislike her behavior, I do appreciate her machinations on behalf of the animal rescue. I also want to give a special nod to a new canine with whom I fell in love. I hope we get to see more of him in the future.

It's easy to get swept away in the holiday mystery with delectable food and teas, delightful decorations, and plenty of action. That's a good thing, because there's a lot here you need to willingly suspend your disbelief. A police officer, at least one that's not corrupt, will not run people through police databases for a civilian, even if the civilian asking is his girlfriend. At twenty three mysteries in I can begrudge Theodosia for feeling she's qualified to investigate-but going into people's houses without their knowledge to snoop? She tends to take things a little to far these days. Laura Childs is a master of pacing and all of your concerns quickly fall to the wayside as she unfolds the mystery.

Fast paced and filled with holiday fun TWISTED TEA CHRISTMAS is a knotty mystery that will delight both tea and dog lovers while sparking a festive mood.
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Another great Tea Shop mystery by Laura Childs.  I love learning all about the tea and food that Theo and her team serve up in the tea house, I am always hungry and thirsty when I finish reading one of these novels.  It is a good thing there are recipes included!

I love the dynamics of Theo and her team of sleuths, the only person talking her out of all the dangerous situations she gets herself into is her detective boyfriend (and even his attempts are half-hearted).  These books are fun, quick reads, and interesting.
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Twisted Tea Christmas was a really good cozy mystery. I had read Ms. Child's first three books in the series but there was no way I would complete the rest prior to this one. Luckily someone told me that despite the book being in the Tea Shop series, most cozies can be read as a standalone, and this one held true to form, which turned out to be a great experience because the mystery was well done, a likable cast of characters and some entertaining quirky one, and there was plenty of Christmas cheer and tradition to get folks in the holiday spirit. Now when mystery lovers come looking for a really good Christmas day book which also happens to be a mystery, I can point them in this series direction. I rate it 4.5 stars.
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Brought to you by OBS Reviewer Daniele

Author Laura Childs brings plenty of holiday swag to Twisted Tea Christmas, the twenty-third entry in the charming Tea Shop Mystery Series.  Full to the brim with talk of festive themed tea parties and Christmas spirit, with a couple of murders thrown into the holiday eggnog, it is a truly satisfying, cozy mystery. 

It’s the week before Christmas and all through the Indigo Tea Shop festivities are planned and decorations are hung.  To start this busy holiday schedule, proprietor Theodosia, trusted tea-sommelier Drayton, and chef Haley are catering a lavish party thrown by one of Charleston’s premier society matrons Drucilla Heyward.  Just as the hostess is about to gather her guests to announce her plans for distributing her fortune, Theo finds her deceased, her diamond rings missing and a valuable Renoir painting stolen.  Theo once again finds herself putting on her sleuthing cap at Drucilla’s personal assistant Pauline’s request.  As the body count rises, Theo, with the help of Drayton and the police, tracks down the killer.

After twenty-three books, I still find these mysteries featuring Theo fresh and inviting.  The joy of a long running series is that recurring characters begin to feel like friends and family, and, oh, how I wish I could spend a leisurely afternoon with these folks lingering over tea and tasty goodies.  Since this book takes place during the Christmas season, there are even more themed teas than usual to drool over.  I love all the talk about linens, china patterns, food and tea, and I hope readers appreciate as much as I do the inclusion of recipes and tea ideas and resources in the back of the book.  The author’s love of Charleston comes through, and the spirit of the city is beautifully captured within these pages.

As much as I enjoy the theme of this series, the mysteries are always the main draw.  That said, I feel like the murders here, though always on Theo’s mind, take a bit of a backseat to all the other goings on.  Drucilla seems like a wonderful character, and I feel like she was not the emphasis of the investigation.  It seems much more about the missing painting than her unfortunate death.  There are quite a few suspects for Theo to weed through, but I was surprised by the killer’s identity…and their motive is a bit lackluster.  Don’t take this to mean I did not enjoy this book – I very much did.

Twisted Tea Christmas is ideal reading for readers looking for a book to get them into the holiday spirit.  I guarantee you will walk away hungry, both for the glorious tea treats and more adventures featuring Theo and Drayton.  Highly recommended!
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Christmas cozies. They’re one of the best parts of the holiday season! If you’ve not “visited” Theodosia Browning’s Indigo Tea Shop yet, jump in now with Twisted Tea Christmas.

Theodosia and her tea sommelier Drayton are catering a Victorian Christmas party for Drucilla Heyward, an elderly, wealthy Charleston woman when she is murdered. Who would want to kill this kind philanthropist? In typical fashion, Theodosia and Drayton are on the case.

I always enjoy reading Laura Childs’s Tea Shop Mysteries. The Charleston, SC setting is charming as is the Indigo Tea Shop. The Indigo Tea Shop hosts many special teas throughout the year, but these Christmas themed teas are the best. I love how all of the little details about both the special and everyday teas are included. You can picture the tables set with different types of china, flatware, flowers, centerpieces, and more with the descriptive scenes in Twisted Tea Christmas.

The characters in these books are some of my favorites. I love Drayton with his knowledge of tea and subtle sense of humor. Haley is the genius behind the delicious foods served at the tea shop. Add Miss Dimple, Detective Tidwell, Riley, and the merchants on the tea shop’s block, and you’ve got delightful and diverse characters who bring a lot of color to the series.

This mystery had a lot of suspects to choose from, so it’s not an easy one to solve. I jumped back and forth among the suspects and didn’t figure it out until the end!

I absolutely recommend Twisted Tea Christmas as well as the prior books in the Tea Shop Mystery Series. You’ll fall in love with the characters and setting just like I did!
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Dollycas’s Thoughts

The week leading up to Christmas is one of the busiest weeks of the year at the Indigo Tea Shop. Theodosia Browning and Drayton Conneley have several special tea events planned and they are catering a Victorian Christmas party for Drucilla Heyward at her mansion in downtown Charleston. All the preparations have been made for a perfect evening. An evening when Drucilla plans to make a major announcement. She is bringing together the Charleston elite to announce that she plans to give her fortune away to several charitable organizations.

The big evening arrives and Drucilla is having a blast at her reception. Champagne corks are popping, Drayton has the tea brewing, the musicians are playing, and the amazing food is ready to be served.  She tells Theodosia she is so excited to announce her plans. She leaves the kitchen giddy with her plan. Responding to an alarm going off Theodosia set out to find the philanthropist hostess and finds her down on the floor in the hallway unconscious with a syringe protruding from her neck.

The holidays do not get off to a great start with Drucilla’s murder and a mansion full of suspects. Theodosia needs to put on her running shoes because finding a killer while serving tea to everyone at their special events to going to require her to move at top speed. I have full confidence she is up to the task.

The Nutcracker Tea

The White Christmas Tea

The Old-Fashioned Southern Tea

Drucilla’s Victorian Christmas Tea

Grand Illumination Tea

Plus the Everday Morning Tea and the people that drop in for lunch and a booth at the Holiday Market.

Oh, my stars Theodosia has an overflowing plate, and yet she squeezes in a dinner with her tea sommelier, Drayton. He is the Watson to her Sherlock in this murder investigation. He, Haley, and Mrs. Dimple keep the tea flowing at the tea shop while Theodosia follows the clues.

These cozy characters are some of my favorites. Theodosia is such a great protagonist. She has grown so much over the course of this series. She is always all-in for every murder investigation that comes her way. She’s tough and doesn’t give up. Drayton is a wonderful sounding board and the person that tries to keep the investigation on a calm even keel, tries is the optimum word. Haley is a sounding board for Drayton and the person that rocks out the fantastic food served by the staff of the Indigo Tea Shop. They all work together like a well-oiled machine. It truly does feel like I am visiting old friends when I open each Tea Shop Mystery.

I have never been to South Carolina but hope to in the future. This author’s descriptions do take me there virtually bringing each scene to life.  I was super excited to see that one of Drucilla’s guests resides in “the old Caswell Mansion.”

Twisted Tea Christmas contains a very twisted mystery. There are tons of suspects that need to be pared down. Who had a motive to kill the Grande Dame? She seemed to be such a nice lady.  It was fun to trail along with Theo as she did all she could to catch a killer. She did have a few different theories but letting down her guard she found out how easily she could have become the killer’s next victim. That said the reveal was scary until it turned into a marvelous capture. Detective Tidwell’s reactions were absolutely priceless.

Escaping to Charleston at Christmastime was delightful, I wish I could have read it in December because it did get me in a holiday spirit but it is much too early to get out the lights and garland. If you like strong characters and a well-plotted mystery Twisted Tea Christmas is the perfect book for you. Don’t worry that this is a long-running series because Laura Childs writes each book to be read on its own. You can jump into this series at any time and then go back and read previous installments while you are waiting for the next Tea Shop Mystery.
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Theodosia has her own teashop, Indigo Tea Shop, that she runs with Drayton Conneley, a tea sommelier and her other employees. She is providing the catering for several parties around Christmastime including the Victorian one being held by Drucilla Heyward in a posh mansion in Charleston. Drucilla's party is well-attended and an excited Drucilla is planning to make an announcement but doesn't get the chance as her body is found on the marble tile floor in the central hallway with an orange syringe in her neck.

This is the 23rd book in Laura Childs's Tea Shop Mystery series and it was a real cracker. I adore the determined Theodosia and catching up with Drayton is always a pleasure as well. I would love to be visiting Theodosia in her teashop in Charleston. Her variety of recipes sounded scrumptious and I'm particularly keen to try the Traditional Shrimp Balls, Drayton's Pork Chops with Apples and Haley's Fried Coffee Cake. Of course, the extensive menu of teas must be mentioned.

Unravelling the mystery in the pockets of Theodosia was lots of fun and I welcomed the comfortable pace. I did my level best to solve the subtle clues, wade through the red herrings and concentrate on the murderer but repeatedly found myself sidetracked by other events, happenings, and comedic moments. Laura Childs has used a few chucklesome sides to full effect such as the mix of ruffian dogs Theodosia has charge of, and Drayton's point-blank refusal to wear a frilly apron. Lots of action keeps up the suspense levels as the story winds its way to a fulfilling, dramatic conclusion.

Twisted Tea Christmas is a highly recommended five star read that will be of interest to many cozy readers, and I’m game to see what shenanigans Theodosia and Drayton get into next in book 24, A Dark and Stormy Tea. If you haven’t tried this series out yet, then you’re definitely missing out!

Thanks to Berkley, Great Escapes Book Tours and NetGalley for a complimentary copy of this novel at my request. This review is my unbiased opinion.
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Theodosia is in full swing for the hustle and bustle of the season in Twisted Tea Christmas. With  catered events and themed tea’s, it has All the makings for a grand time. That is until the hostess, Miss Drucilla Hayward is murdered at her own event. Theodosia is thoroughly shaken by the event and rightfully so. She can’t seem to get this poor woman off her mind. Not only was she murdered but well you’ll have to read the book. Theodosia does what she does best and starts asking questions and hunting out clues to get to the bottom of this holiday mystery murder.


Twisted Tea Christmas is a great read to start getting yourself ready for the holiday season. Laura Childs crafts a mystery as good as perfectly steeped tea. She will also leave you hungry and searching for new tea. Theodosia is a hoot. Even in the face of danger she finds a way to make you smile. Even though her darling man is out of town, she can’t  help but to get involved. With Tea shop events stacking up, Theodosia is pulled in every direction. Add in the twist and turns of this well plotted mystery, I don’t know how the poor woman didn’t crack. Pure determination and will are two of Theodosia’s Best qualities. Through the holiday cheer and this crazy mystery Theodosia brings the spirit of Christmas within a book.
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Twisted Tea Christmas by Laura Childs has Theodosia Browning and Drayton Conneley catering a swanky event for society mavin Miss Drucilla Heyward.  Unfortunately, they end up witnessing the demise of society Grand Dame.  Theodosia cannot get the image of the dead woman out of her mind and begins to do a little snooping around.  It seems that someone is not happy with her prowling.  Theodosia will need to keep her wits about her if she is going to survive to celebrate Christmas with her friends.  Twisted Tea Christmas is the first holiday themed A Tea Shop Mystery.  Laura Childs brought the Christmas atmosphere in this story.  I loved the themed tea events that included a nutcracker tea and a Victorian illumination tea.  A Tea Shop Mysteries are what got me hooked on cozy mysteries.  I always love visiting Charleston, South Carolina to check in on Theodosia, Drayton, and Haley.  Theodosia is a strong, smart female character.  She owns the charming Indigo Tea Shop where Drayton serves tasty teas and Haley whips up delectable delights.  I thought Twisted Tea Christmas was well-written with developed, relatable characters.  The author captured the setting of Charleston.  I enjoyed the local flavor.  The mystery was well-plotted.  There are multiple suspects in this whodunit.  I enjoyed following the clues to solve the mystery.  There are twists and turns that keep the mystery entertaining.  I loved the reveal which had me laughing.  I was sorry for Twisted Tea Christmas to end.  Twisted Tea Christmas can be read as a standalone if you are new to the series, but I do recommend reading all of the books in this charming Southern cozy mystery series.  There are yummy recipes at the end along with tea time tips from the author.  Twisted Tea Christmas provides a jolly good time with tasty teas, a dead Grand Dame, a pilfered painting, a surplus of pooches, and a resolute tea shop sleuth.
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There's a lot I love about this series.  I really enjoy the Charleston setting and I love all the talk about the tea and treats.  Drayton and Haley are entertaining characters and I always like spending page time with them.  The mystery is intriguing and I love the art theft angle.

Theodosia tends to get on my nerves.  She's a bit too perfect and a bit too know it all.  As well, she gets super offended and indignant when told not to investigate on her own because it could jeopardize the investigate. I read a lot of cozy mysteries which always feature an amateur detective but normally when the amateur detective is involved with a member of law enforcement they usually share their findings while Theodosia typically plays things very close to the vest.  While this has always annoyed be a bit I usually enjoyed the book enough that it didn't bother me too much.  Unfortunately, in this book I didn't find the pacing to be fast enough to suck me in and get me past my eye rolling at Theodosia.

Despite the gorgeous cover and the interesting premise I didn't feel like the execution on this particular book was solid enough to have the pros outweigh the cons for me.  Since I was also not a fan of the previous book I think I'll be giving the series a rest.
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It is the holiday season and business is booming!
Besides the special events the tea shop hosts (and at the end of the book there are tips to host your own events,) Theodora and company (her best friends and family) also take on catering jobs for discerning customers. They are full productions including more than just serving tea and scones.
What is not on the menu is MURDER and robbery.
Theodora's beau is out of town but her respected nemesis Detective Tidwell remains on the case.

With a house full of suspects, all with shady secrets and various motives, this investigation could take weeks, if not longer. Business (and parties) must go on.

Full of delicious details and furry complications, the Tea Shop contingent does their best to stay out of danger and deliver their best experiences. This book will keep you on edge and guessing until the final confrontation.
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Full time teashop owner and part-time amateur sleuth, Theodosia Browning is back in this 23rd installment to solve another mystery in picturesque Charleston, South Carolina. While catering a Victorian Christmas party for the wealthy and philanthropic Drucilla Heyward, Theodosia finds the hostess dead with a syringe protruding from her neck, a valuable ring missing from her finger and a stolen Renoir. As busy as she is running her teashop and hosting holiday themed events, Theodosia becomes embroiled in solving this latest crime. Along with her sommelier, Drayton Heyward, and the local police detective Burt Tidwell, Theodosia soon has a list of possible suspects and must work to eliminate them one by one to find the real killer!

This cozy mystery series is abundant in local flavor and enough twists and turns to keep you guessing. Theodosia and the recurring cast of local residents never fail to entertain. As usual, the back of the book contains plenty of themed party ideas and delicious recipes. Try the Pumpkin-Pecan Dump Cake for a delicious sweet treat!
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I am enjoying this series, although I haven't read many and not in any order. I did figure out who did it. However, I still enjoyed the mystery. I like the town and reading about the different characters. I love Drayton. 

Thank  you to the author, publisher and NetGalley for my eARC in exchange for an honest review.
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A special holiday entry in the popular Tea Shoppe Mysteries series by Laura Child. Theodosia Browning, a Charleston, SC native, leaves her  high power job as marketing executive and returns to her roots to open the Indigo Tea Shop, a charming tea room in the historic district.. With her tea shop coworkers she not only creates a welcoming and charming tea shop but also solves a plethora of murders.  This entry - #22 in the series - involves a Victorian holiday tea gone lethal.
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I love this series, and each book just keeps getting better. Theodosia is a great character and her relationship with Drayton and Haley adds fun to the story. 
A sudden death really hits Theo hard and she refuses to let the culprit get away with murder.
This is a perfect book to get you ready for the holidays. 
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for selecting me to read an advanced copy of this book.
#TwistedTeaChristmas #NetGalley
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A Christmas party turns grim when Theodosia's tea service is interrupted by the murder of their hostess and the theft of several of her priceless treasures. Of course no one gets away with murder when Theodosia is around!

The Tea Shop series is one of my very favorite cozy series. I adore Theodosia, she's the kind of person anyone would love to have for a friend and she's always involved in the most interesting escapades and adventures. Earl Grey is the perfect pet for her, a sweet rescue who's intelligent and patient and loves to go for runs. Drayton and Haley are also wonderful, smart and loyal and each lending a particular expertise that makes the Indigo Tea Shop the perfect place to go. Together they make an unlikely but perfect group of friends and investigators. I also love how the action takes place right off the bat and when the killer is identified the book is over. This means non-stop action from page 1 to the very end.

Of course I enjoyed this book so much. I think I could read Laura Childs' grocery list and say the same thing. Anyone who has not read this series yet absolutely must, anyone who has been reading this series will enjoy reading this one. The killer is somewhat easy to spot but there are so many potential perpetrators you can't be quite sure until the very end.

Thank you to NetGalley for providing me with an ARC.
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Theodosia Browning and Drayton Conneley are catering a fancy Christmas party in Charleston for Drucilla Heyward. Drucilla is very well-known and one of the wealthiest ladies in town. During her party, she was planning to announce her idea to give her money to different charities. But before she can, Theodosia finds Drucilla unconscious with a syringe in her neck!!  Was this planned? Who and why would someone do this to her?

This was my first book by Laura Childs. It was a great little mystery. I really enjoyed the setting since Charleston is one of my favorite places to visit. I will be looking into Laura Childs’ other books in this series and I would highly recommend this one to those who enjoy a good little mystery.

Many thanks to NetGalley and Berkley Publishing Group for my ARC in exchange for my honest review.
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This was a delightful book.  I am not a tea drinker but the parties and different kinds of teas made it wonderful.  I felt as though I was attending the parties and could see everything going on around me.  The characters are wonderful and the story had me laughing many times.  The mystery kept me intrigued until the very end.  This is definitely a book to add to your must read list.  
The author did a wonderful job writing this book.  I will be seeking out more of her books.
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Love this series and loved this book!  Recommended for fans of the series, tea and Charleston, SC.


I cannot wait for the next book in the series
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