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In the enjoyable eighth installment of Childs's tea shop series (after 2006's Blood Orange Brewing), Mark Congdon, commodities broker and co-owner of a Charleston bed and breakfast, drops dead after sipping a glass of sweet tea at the Spring Plantation Ramble. This was no simple heart attack—Mark was poisoned. Eager to help out Mark's grieving widow, tea shop proprietress and gumshoe Theodosia Browning offers to collect his belongings from his office. There, she discovers that a surprising number of co-workers, including a spurned lover and a professional rival, had reason to want Mark dead. Yet again, Childs proves herself skilled at local color, serving up cunning portraits of Southern society and delectable descriptions of dishes like cheesy crab casserole (recipe included). (Mar.)
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Laura Childs is the New York Times bestselling author of the Cackleberry Club, Tea Shop, and Scrapbooking mysteries. In her past life she was a Clio Award–winning advertising writer and CEO of her own marketing firm. She lives in Plymouth, Minnesota. --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.