In the run-up to Christmas Eve, organizer of book-themed tea parties Callie Aspen and her lovable Boston terrier will have to conquer threefold trouble—a mysterious will, a missing heirloom and a dead body—to restore the festive spirit to their small town.
This Christmas, Callie Aspen returns to her childhood hideout Heart’s Harbor, Maine where her great aunt runs Book Tea, a vintage tearoom where every sweet treat contains a bookish clue. Upon arrival in the fairy-tale snowy town, Callie is drawn into the preparations for a special tea party at Haywood Hall, the rambling house of Heart’s Harbor’s oldest resident, rich but lonely widow Dorothea Finster, who invited her estranged relatives, old friends and the elite of the town to make a mysterious announcement about her will.
Believing they can touch a part of her fortune, everybody is determined to come, despite not liking each other or even their hostess. And Callie’s old friend Sheila complicates things by using the tea party to announce her daughter’s engagement, even though her daughter isn’t sure she’s in love with the young lawyer her mother thinks so perfect for her.
Catering to people who each have their own agenda isn’t easy for the Book Tea crew, especially once the valuable engagement ring goes missing and a dead body turns up in the conservatory. Can Callie and her great aunt use their love of clues to dig into the crimes and show their unhappy hostess and squabbling guests the true Christmas spirit?
Having spent many afternoons as a teen on the Nile with Poirot or confronting sinister spinsters in sleepy English towns with Miss Marple, it was only natural Joy Avon would start writing mysteries of her own. Besides writing, Joy enjoys hiking, collecting stationery and trying new desserts, especially if chocolate is involved. This is her first Book Tea Shop mystery.
Praise for In Peppermint Peril:
“Joy Avon’s In Peppermint Peril will fill your holiday with Christmas spirit, charm, and intrigue.”
—Paige Shelton, New York Times bestselling author of the Scottish Bookshop Mysteries
“The quaint setting drew me in, the characters captivated me, the mystery kept me turning the pages—a perfect cozy read.”
—Lucy Arlington, New York Times bestselling author of the Novel Idea Mysteries
“Joy Avon’s Book Tea Shop mystery, In Peppermint Peril, is a delightful Christmas cozy. Ms. Avon’s charming descriptions draw the reader into the village of Heart’s Harbor and holiday celebrations.”
—Karen Rose Smith, USA Today bestselling author
“Callie Aspen is home for the holidays but a murder wasn’t in her plans. With a fierce determination and sleuthing skills to leave the local police in awe, she makes a strong debut in In Peppermint Peril. This is a new cozy series to watch.”
—Linda Wiken (aka Erika Chase), author of the Dinner Club Mysteries
“Heart’s Harbor, Maine is a charming town where murder never happens—until it does… Cozy to the core!”—Terrie Farley Moran, Agatha and Derringer winning author of the Read ‘Em and Eat Mysteries
“She has assembled an interesting cast of characters, her plot moves along at an enjoyable pace with enough twists and turns to satisfy, there is just enough romance to spice things up, not to mention the mouthwatering descriptions of the confections coming out of the tea shop make one wish it was around the corner. All in all, a pleasure to read.”
—Isis Crawford, author of A Catered Costume Party