Review: Steeped in Murder by Kristen Weiss

Posted February 25, 2020 by Lola in Mystery, Review / 4 Comments

Review graphic

Steeped in MurderSteeped in Murder (Tea and Tarot Cozy Mystery #1)
by Kirsten Weiss

My Rating: 3 stars

Genre: Cozy Mystery
Age Category: Adult
Type of romance: MF

Tea, tarot, and trouble.

Abigail Beanblossom’s dream of owning a tea room in her California beach town is about to come true. She’s got the lease, the start-up funds, and the recipes. But Abigail’s out of a tearoom and into hot water when the realtor turns out to be a conman… and then turns up dead.

But not even death puts an end to the conman’s mischief. He rented the same space to a tarot reader, Hyperion Night. Convinced his tarot room is in the cards, Night’s not letting go of the building without a fight. Steamed, Abigail realizes the only way to salvage her tea room is to join forces with the tarot reader, even if he isn’t her cup of tea.

But they must work together, steeping themselves in the murky waters of the sham realtor’s double dealings, in order to unearth the truth – before murder boils over again.

Steeped in Murder is the first book in the Tea and Tarot cozy mystery series. Buy the book to start this hilarious caper today.

My Review

I really liked the concept for this series with the tea and tarot focus so I bought a copy of this one and finally got around to reading it. It took me a while to get into this and there were parts that didn’t quite work for me, but there were also parts I liked. And by the end I am curious enough that I probably will pick up book 2. I am also hoping now that the tea and tarot shop is getting established that the next book will feature that more and will be more engaging.

I struggled a bit to get into Steeped in Murder, the story wasn’t gripping me at first. The mystery wasn’t engaging and I didn’t really care for the main character yet. Then she was keeping something from her grandfather first and at times he emotions seemed to go from one end to another, it made her feel a bit wishy washy and uncertain and it was hard to keep up with at times. There also seemed to be a few small things that didn’t quite make sense to me. Slowly it got better, and I liked her grandfather and Hyperion. The mystery however didn’t improve much. I did like reading about the tea and tarot shop and seeing how that developed and am curious how that will progress throughout the series.

Let’s talk about the mystery, while the set-up was intriguing it just fell flat for me. I wasn’t engaged and curious. We have the murder at the start and quite a bit of investigating, but very little new information or big reveals throughout the investigation. There is a limited group of people involved and it all felt a bit static somehow. It just seemed like they were going over the same thing and not getting anywhere. At first I wasn’t sure who had done it because I wasn’t invested enough to try and figure it out, but when I took a bit of time to think things through I quickly figured out who did it and turns out I was correct. I wasn’t 100% of the motive due to lack of clues, but even there I was thinking in the right direction. The reveal at the end also lacked impact, but I did like the epilogue about the tea and tarot shop. I was more invested in the shop than in the mystery.

At first it isn’t sure how Abigail will ever get her tearoom. Her realtor was a scam artist and is dead and both she and another person have the key to the building. Who will finally get the building and what will happen to the other person? She lost a lot of money and it is unclear whether she will get it back and if she can continue with her plans. I wasn’t sure what to think of this plot line at first and was annoyed they didn’t just agree to stay out of the building till they settled things. But after a certain point I liked seeing how things progressed and I am interesting to see how the shop will do throughout the series.

Abigail was an okay main character, but I never fully warmed up to her. I liked her baking scones and tea, although I did wonder if she ate other food as well as she always seems to be making tea and scones. I liked how she cared about her grandfather, the scenes with her and her grandfather were great to read. And I liked that she wanted to start a store, although sometimes I failed to feel her passion behind it, especially when she wanted to give up at times. I just wanted to get a bit of a better feel for her personality. And Hyperion with his quirky personality stood out way more than Abigail in my opinion.

I ended up really liking Hyperion, he was so quirky and I thought he was interesting. It was interesting how much trust he put in his cards and I also liked when he called Abigail out on her bad behavior, he seemed to get her quickly. And I liked how they interacted, after the first few scenes ofcourse. He really sticks by her and trust in their partnership long before Abigail does. I also liked how his tarot reading is a theme that plays a role throughout the book and the way the cards connect to what’s going on.

I also liked the scenes with Abigails grandfather and how he and family friend Thomas played a consistent role in the book. Peking, the duckling was also a fun addition. And Hyperion has a cat as well that is part of the story a few times. There is a hint of possible romance, but so far it’s mostly Abigail thinking someone is hot. I hope there will be a bit more to their relationship if it does turn in a relationship as so far I didn’t really care for it.

To summarize: Steeped in Murder was off to a rough start for me, I had some trouble getting into this book as it wasn’t really gripping me. It took me some time to warm up to the main character and even by the end of the book I thought she was just okay. I liked her determination and the baking she did, but felt like she could be a bit wishy washy at times and she sometimes seemed to go from one extreme to another. The mystery also didn’t really work for me, it didn’t progress as much throughout the book with not many new clues popping up. After thinking it over a bit it was clear to me who the murderer was and I was correct. I was more invested in the tea and tarot store than the mystery. I ended up really liking Hyperion, I wasn’t sure about him at first, but by the end of the book I really liked him. He is so quirky and interesting and I liked him. All in all this was a decent start to the new series, it didn’t fully grip me, but be the end I am curious enough that I think I will continue the series.

3 Stars


You can also read my review on Goodreads, Bookbub and Amazon.

Tags: ,

4 responses to “Review: Steeped in Murder by Kristen Weiss

  1. The way you described this was how I felt about a different series I started by this author. I liked some of it, but didn’t fall in love with the mysteries or the heroine so I let it go after three books. Hopefully, this series will go much differently for you now that book one is done introducing things and you can maybe get more of the tea shop.
    Sophia Rose recently posted…Review: My Bestie’s Ex by Piper RayneMy Profile

    • Now I am curious which series you read. I also tried another one of this author’s series as well and also had some issues with it where I liked some of it, but not everything. That was The Perfectly Proper Paranormal Museum series. I think i read two books and then gave up. I hope this series might get better with book 2. I have another one of her first books in a series as well to try. She has such fun set-up for her series tough, I just wish I would enjoy the actual books more.

Leave a Reply

CommentLuv badge

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.