As much as I usually enjoy this light reading series, for some reason this particular book just annoyed me.
Yes, fashion, tea history tidbits, and Charleston society doings are mildly interesting, but the 'mystery' was lost this time and the characters acted stupid!
I knew 'who done it' early in the book and am sure most readers figured it out, too. The usually well written heroine needs to get back to some semblance of reality and I'm truly beginning to dislike these gossipy, snoopy people.
We had way, way, way too much description of clothing, jewelry, shoes, table settings, glassware, crystal, wine, & antique furniture. It's like the author is going overboard to let readers know these people have good taste, are wealthy, and, supposedly, are well-bred.
It felt like the author needed to get the length of the novel up and increase the word count, so readers wouldn't feel cheated.
But, what bothered me the most this time was that the character of Theodosia acted like a stupid heroine from a B-rated horror movie.
More than once she went, alone, into the empty theater, scene of the murder, without letting anyone know where she was going. Like a female horror movie character going alone down to the cellar or up to the attic where you KNOW something awful is going to happen. If this book had sound track it would be a slasher-type theme.
Then, Theodosia, wearing 3" high heels, **runs**, with her dog on leash, away from someone who's following her home down the darkest, loneliest street in Charleston. Running in high heels. Sure!
Toward the (very bad, unbelievable) end, again, wearing Prada slides with 3-1/2 heels, she follows a wooded path off a dirt road. Only after walking quite a way, with no light, does she remove her shoes.
Come on! Any woman who wears heels knows there is no way you can easily walk on non-pavement without twisting your ankle. And slides -- no backs, no straps, no support! Just totally unreal.
Maybe it's time for a good editor to step in. Perhaps the author has run out of ideas for murders. If so, that's OK. Start a new series with new characters and let this one die a well deserved death.