Customer Reviews for

Death of a Mad Hatter (Hat Shop Mystery Series #2)

Average Rating 4.5
( 13 )
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

Who Was Mad at the Mad Hatter? At first, Scarlett Parker is thr

Who Was Mad at the Mad Hatter?

At first, Scarlett Parker is thrilled when Mim's Whims, the hat shop she inherited with her cousin Vivian Tremont, is asked to provide hats for the Grisby family's upcoming tea party.  It will be the fund raising event of the season, and ...
Who Was Mad at the Mad Hatter?

At first, Scarlett Parker is thrilled when Mim's Whims, the hat shop she inherited with her cousin Vivian Tremont, is asked to provide hats for the Grisby family's upcoming tea party.  It will be the fund raising event of the season, and the Alice in Wonderland theme will be fun.

However, as the family comes in to the shop for fittings and design consultations, the cousins start to realize just how much hatred and animosity is just below the surface.  The day of the party, some of the family conflict comes to the surface before one of them winds up dead.  With the hat shop once again dragged into a murder investigation, can Scarlett figure out what happened?

The book gets off to a strong start as we get to know the members of the Grisby family and the possible motives for murder.  It doesn't really slow down once the body turns up.  In fact, even more secrets are unearthed, making the outcome a mystery until the end.  Strong characters helped me care as well.

My problem with this series lies with Scarlett, and her love interest.  Harrison is the cousins' business manager, and he and Scarlett clash over everything.  I actually felt that the time devoted to their will they/won't they relationship slowed things down, and Scarlett's actions dragged out a few elements of that plot longer than they needed to be.  It felt forced.

Hopefully, that aspect of things will calm down as the series progresses because I do like most of the characters and plan to continue.

posted by MarkBaker on May 15, 2014

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

Not Up to the First.

Not Up to the First. Another disappointment in another series I had looked forward to continuing. I do love the London setting as it is one of my favorite cities in the ...
Not Up to the First. Another disappointment in another series I had looked forward to continuing. I do love the London setting as it is one of my favorite cities in the world, and the author's descriptions bring back fond memories of familiar places. The hat shop setting is also unique--but in the next book, there needs to be some serious growth in the main character. Scarlett comes across as childish, impulsive and just plain dumb. By the end, when she has stupidly endangered herself and others for the umpteenth time--I want to smack her. She doesn't even come across as an adult--more like a petulant teenager who is more interested in being adorable than using her head. Yes; this is a cozy mystery, just to be taken for fun reading, but I need some 'smarts' with my fun read. The protagonist's endless and childish 'oh should I stay away from men?' and 'oh why isn't Harrison paying attention to me?' is just tedious. I keep wondering why Harrison is interested at all. Also, like too many other cozy read books, details of the mystery are repeated WAY too much to the point of distraction. What is worse here, is that obvious, easy questions to solving the crime (and this is NOT a spoiler) like 'why would a possible suspect want to leave the country?' are ignored or treated as impossible to answer. Good grief. Another element I found off-putting here is the stereotypical treatment/presentation of one of the gay characters early in the book. In one scene I found it outright offensive. While that does not permeate the story, that, along with the other issues, just left a bad taste in my mouth as a reader. Don't know that I'll bother with the next addition to the series.

posted by irishclaireKG on May 24, 2014

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  • Posted May 24, 2014

    Not Up to the First.

    Not Up to the First. Another disappointment in another series I had looked forward to continuing. I do love the London setting as it is one of my favorite cities in the world, and the author's descriptions bring back fond memories of familiar places. The hat shop setting is also unique--but in the next book, there needs to be some serious growth in the main character. Scarlett comes across as childish, impulsive and just plain dumb. By the end, when she has stupidly endangered herself and others for the umpteenth time--I want to smack her. She doesn't even come across as an adult--more like a petulant teenager who is more interested in being adorable than using her head. Yes; this is a cozy mystery, just to be taken for fun reading, but I need some 'smarts' with my fun read. The protagonist's endless and childish 'oh should I stay away from men?' and 'oh why isn't Harrison paying attention to me?' is just tedious. I keep wondering why Harrison is interested at all. Also, like too many other cozy read books, details of the mystery are repeated WAY too much to the point of distraction. What is worse here, is that obvious, easy questions to solving the crime (and this is NOT a spoiler) like 'why would a possible suspect want to leave the country?' are ignored or treated as impossible to answer. Good grief. Another element I found off-putting here is the stereotypical treatment/presentation of one of the gay characters early in the book. In one scene I found it outright offensive. While that does not permeate the story, that, along with the other issues, just left a bad taste in my mouth as a reader. Don't know that I'll bother with the next addition to the series.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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