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Murder Spills the Tea: 11/07/22
Murder Spills the Tea by Vicki Delany and Shaina Summerville (Narrator) (2022) is the third book in the Tea by the Sea mystery series. Lily Roberts and her tea shop have been roped into participating in a popular baking show. She's going up against another local bakery and sandwich shop. But before filming is complete, the Scottish judge is murdered in Lily's kitchen.
I don't watch much reality TV and have never seen the Great British Bake Off which is referenced in this novel. I did, happen, though to read the book during the aftermath of the "Mexican Week" debacle. I kept that in mind as Lily experienced first hand the reality show shenanigans.
Murder Spills the Tea was the second reality show comes to the protagonist mystery I've read in recent months. Along with the television mysteries I've seen where it's been a plot (Midsomer Murders and Death in Paradise for example), I can feel myself groaning when this plot surfaces. There are definite tropes associated with a TV production. I worry that if this set up continues to popular I will end up feeling about them as I do about boxing episodes.
What led to me giving a top rating to this book was Lily's absolute disdain for reality shows and the whole situation. She really was bullied into participating. Her jaded attitude gave her the wherewithal to question every one and every situation making the solution both obvious and entertaining.