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Publisher's Summary

Cotswolds tearoom owner Gemma Rose is excited to join the May Day celebrations in Oxford...until the beautiful spring morning ends in murder. Now, she's embroiled in a deadly mystery - with four nosy old ladies determined to help in the sleuthing! Before she knows it, Gemma finds herself stalking a Russian "princess" and keeping up with the Old Biddies in Krav Maga class, while still trying to serve delicious cakes and buttery scones at her quaint English tearoom.

And that's just the start of her worries: there's her little tabby cat, Muesli, who is causing havoc at the local nursing home...and what should she do with the creepy plants that her mother keeps buying for her new cottage?

But the mystery that's really bothering Gemma is her boyfriend's odd behavior. Devlin O'Connor has always been enigmatic, but, recently, the handsome CID detective has been strangely distant and evasive. Could he be lying to her? But why?

©2016 H.Y. Hanna (P)2017 H.Y. Hanna

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

I love this series, BUT...

This is one of my favorite series all around. The narration brings all the characters to life, and I especially love the "old biddies."

However, Jemma was exceptionally annoying in this book. She was a jealous clingy girlfriend, acting insecure the whole book long. She over analyzes every single move her boyfriend makes. In one scene she decides to call Devlin and see if he's free. When she can't get ahold of him she decides to pack up her cat, an overnight bag & show up unannounced at his house. She acts like a slightly crazy jealous girl, going back & forth in her mind if Devlin is cheating on her. It's exhausting.. I could have used way less of that.

Otherwise I love this series & the rest of it is incredibly enjoyable to listen to!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Love the story but NOT the mother!

I love how H. Y. Hanna's mind works in the mystery part of the story but I don't like the personal part of the story. Gemma Rose has a sharp analytical mind but is emotionally underdeveloped. She has a tendency to jump to conclusions regarding her mystery solving and her romantic interest. She seems emotionally immature but a very sweet and caring person. My impression of her relationship with Devlin is that they are really "in lust" and not in love. The attraction seems to be only physical because that's the only thing that they share with each other. There doesn't seem to be any trust between them or sharing of themselves to each other. To me, that is not a sign of love. Her relationship with her mother is lacking as well. I think when Gemma starts to mature so will her relationships with her mother and her love/lust interest. I find Gemma's mother's contribution to the story is only of an irritating distraction, which I skip forward until I don't hear her voice anymore. I can do without that kind of irritation. It really adds nothing to the story. As irritating as the old biddies are (especially Mable), they do add to the story with some humor and clues. Despite all this, I love the mystery, red herrings, and the answer.
Pearl Hewitt is so fabulous with the variations of voices and accents. She tells the story not read it and that is what makes listening to her so easy and enjoyable. She is five stars all the way!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great Series!

This is a great book; this is the fifth book in the Oxford Tearoom Mystery series written by H. Y. Hanna and narrated by Pearl Hewitt. Cotswolds tearoom owner Gemma Rose is excited to join the May Day celebrations in Oxford...until the beautiful spring morning ends in murder. Now, she's embroiled in a deadly mystery - with four nosy old ladies determined to help in the sleuthing! Before she knows it, Gemma finds herself stalking a Russian "princess" and keeping up with the Old Biddies in Krav Maga class, while still trying to serve delicious cakes and buttery scones at her quaint English tearoom.This is a great book with a wonderful story and well developed characters. The story flowed very well and was very enjoyable. This book will keep you reading long into the night and you will not want to put this book down until you finish. This was such a great read and full of surprises. The narrator did a wonderful job with this book. She did a great job with the different voices of each character in this book. It was very easy to listen to and I didn’t want to stop listening until the end. If you are looking for a great book with well-developed characters then you need to listen to this book. I am looking forward to listening to the next book by this author and narrator. I voluntarily reviewed an advanced reader’s copy of this book. The free book held no determination on my personal review.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Good Read

I really enjoined tghius installment of the tearoom mysteries. They are well written, humorous, and entertaining. I love the old biddies and Gemma's mother.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing series, but, book 6??????

I love this book and every other one in the series, Gemma is an excellent character, but NEEDS to stand up for herself against her insistent mother! She is almost 30 for god's sake, just say NO! However, the reason I titled my review the way I did was because I looked and saw that they do not have book six! Audible! When will you fix this?

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Another winner

These books stay very consistent with the storyline and characters. I have enjoyed this book quite a lot. As usual the narrator’s performance is wonderful and enchanting. It is easy to listen to, interesting and humorous.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Beatrice
  • Houston, TX, United States
  • 12-29-17

Another Good Series

Every book is better than the previous one. The characters and story are fresh and entertaining with the right amount of humor. I hope all of the books are made available on Audible.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A terrific book set in Oxford!

Gemma Rose, owner and proprietor of the Oxford Tea Room, lets her best friend, Cassie, talk her into joining Cassie for Oxford's May Day celebrations in Muffins and Mourning Tea by HY Hanna. This celebration involves meeting at 5 am at the Great Tower to hear the Magdalen College Choir sing to welcome in the spring. With all the jostling by the crowd, Gemma gets separated from Cassie and ends up on the bridge that spans the Thames. Then, with the conclusion to the song, someone splashes into the river, causing everyone to smile over the student hijinks. But when the young man fails to surface, smiles turn to expressions of concern and soon panic as his dead body is brought up from the river. He must have broken his neck in the shallow river.

At least, this is what everyone thinks must be the case until the medical examiner looks over the body. Charlie Foxton has been stabbed with a kitchen skewer. Even more upsetting to Gemma is the fact that the skewer belongs to her chief baker's best friend, Miriam Hopkins, who served as Charlie's scout in Oxford. For the uninitiated (which means most of the world), an Oxford scout takes care of the students living in the dorms, even cleaning up their rooms and vacuuming each week. Sometimes a scout will actually do laundry for her or his students! With Miriam as both Charlie's scout and the owner of the knife, she looks guilty.

So Dora, Gemma's baker, begs Gemma to find the truth in order to free Miriam of suspicion. The four crazy old ladies who love to snoop and whom Gemma privately calls "The Old Biddies," eagerly assume the role of detective once again. They drag Gemma to snoop on the room of Damien Heath, Charlie's roommate, in a potentially disastrous trip to his college. Further, they enlist Gemma in a class in Krav Maga in which these old ladies send Gemma to the emergency room. The four of them and Gemma develop their own list of potential suspects. And in addition, Gemma notices her boyfriend, Devlin, the local Detective Inspector, keeping more and more secrets from her, making her wonder what is happening with her relationship and whether Devlin might be cheating on her. That just adds to Gemma's personal distress.

This book is another fun, enjoyable book in the delightful Oxford Tea Room series. I especially enjoyed that this book had some great scenes with the Old Biddies. They really come to life in this book and made me laugh. And Gemma's mom keeps giving her more exotic plants for her house. Muesli, the cat, even gets her own fun scene. It was fun to spend time with Gemma in Oxford again. The plot moved swiftly and kept me drawn to it. There were a number of Russians involved in the case, a nice addition of another culture to the book.

I liked Pearl Hewitt's performance as narrator of the book. Her gentle voice sounds ideal as belonging to Gemma. Further, she makes the book enjoyable and seem so real.

Muffins and Mourning Tea is a great addition to the Oxford Tea Room series. I found myself worrying with Gemma about her love life and following her concerns about the case. I hope that the next book comes out on audio soon! I give this book five stars!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

5+/5 Slices of Banoffee Pie…Murderously Delicious!

What a treat, not only another delicious recipe to satisfy this Anglophile’s appetite, but also I couldn’t put down this fifth book! Only H.Y. Hanna would take us to Oxford’s May Day celebration opening up at an ungodly morning hour and giving us…murder! Always well-written we get a clear picture of Oxford through descriptions of its pathways, bridges, towers, and college gardens along with everyone’s various early morning fashions. My favorite character Gemma heads out to meet BFF Cassie to enjoy the Magdalen Choir greeting the sunrise reminiscent of their college days. Everyone, including Gemma, felt goosebumps at the final blend of joyous voices and then a commotion, shouting, someone heaved over the edge, and the splashing of water. The crowd eagerly set to applaud another Oxford tradition of jumping off the bridge and into the river below, but the Harris tweed clad boy Gemma had stood next to on the bridge floated silently, not moving, face down in the cold river…this isn’t part of the tradition! But a clever murder is always part of H.Y. Hanna’s Oxford Tearoom Mystery!

I’m always engaged with Hanna’s murder mystery, gathering clues, navigating twists and turns, and trying to uncover the killer before another “Gemma’s in peril” ending. My inner “Sherlock” is always delightfully challenged, but I really enjoy the well-developed characters and all their interactions. Again CID detective and boyfriend Devlin O’Conner heads the investigation, and although very good at his job, it’s effecting the budding romance between him and Gemma. Hanna has woven this drama throughout the series along with the nosy “Old Biddies” interfering with their own investigation, Muesli’s kitty behaviors causing problems, Gemma’s mother inserting herself, and BFF Cassie always there in a pinch. I love the whole world of tea and scones, friends and family, and murder and mayhem! And don’t forget sticky toffee, sliced bananas, and fresh whipped cream…yes, Banoffee Pie!

Do you want a treat? Check out the audio version with the brilliant talent of Pearl Hewitt enhancing this engaging story!

Pearl Hewitt’s artistry hits the mark again portraying a wide variety of British accents and dialects, and mesmerizing me as I listen to every delightful character’s tone, personality, and emotion greatly enriching an already engaging H.Y. Hanna story…What? Three hours have passed? I didn’t even realize as I was plugged into my phone going about my chores…Ok, I really didn’t do the chores. During the gossipy moment at the tearoom, Pearl does an extraordinary job with the various tourists offering information about the mystery from Americans to Australians to a Scot or two, and she even provided an excellent Slavic accent. All of this is why audiobooks are so unique. I can read the story myself, but the narrator, especially Pearl Hewitt, screams, yawns, whispers, slows her tone for dramatic effect, and when “Devlin sighed” you hear him sigh, when “Dora snorted” you hear her snort, and when Meusli is upset you hear the “meorrws!”! I love it! Pearl Hewitt is absolutely perfect for H.Y. Hanna’s Oxford story.

Audio Book Only "Disclosure: A review copy of this book was sent to me by the author. All of the above opinions are my own.”

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • BARBJ
  • Maple Ridge, BC, Canada
  • 10-22-17

Another great instalment - Oxford Tearoom Mystery

I was excited to see the next instalment in this series. I enjoyed seeing what the usual cast of characters were up to, especially the Old Biddies and Muesli. From the descriptions of the gift plants to the antics of the Old Biddies in their self defence class and their disguises, the book kept me entertained both in print and in the Audible format too. Pearl's telling of the story and the accents were great once again at bringing HY's story to life. Whether giving voice to Muesli or to the regular characters or new characters it's a lot for one person to keep sorted out, I'm not sure how she does it! Excellent. I highly recommend this book and the series in general. Happy listening!

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Inishowen Cailin
  • 09-26-17

I love this series

Another great adventure for Gemma and the 'Old Biddies.' This is one of the better books in the series. What I love most about The Tearoom Mysteries is that they are so funny. I love the humour; in this installment the Old Biddies doing Krav Maga provided plenty of light relief. Muesli also has his fair share of excitement and I couldn't help but laugh at his antics at the nursing home.
On a romantic note Gemma is worried about her relationship with Devlin as he works non stop and acts strangely around her. This story line kept the romance interesting for me. Lincoln, one of my favourite side characters, makes an appearance in this episode as well.
The mystery was fun but complex and it had me eagerly following the clues along with Gemma who seemed to be doing a better job of investigating than the police.


I voluntarily reviewed a gifted copy.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Julie
  • 12-12-17

Just my cup of tea

This is the 5th Oxford tea room murder mystery and I have listened to all 5 now and really enjoyed the series, I think this one was my favourite for a number of reasons. The biggest one is picturing a group of four little old ladies taking self defence lesson in order to be able to go under cover and questions suspects.. oh and to take on any bad guys that are lurking around Oxford. Very funny. As well as the antics of Mussel the playful cat that gets let lose in a care home, can she find another clue to help Gemma unmask the murder or just cause more embarrassment to her owner.

There was also a number of suspects to keep you guessing until the end. I can't wait for the next book in the series so I can catch up with what seems like old friends.

The narrator was very good and made a good job of giving some of the characters a Russian accent. Well to my untrained ear anyway.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Crispin
  • 09-17-17

Disappointing pedestrian chick lit

I was hoping for humour. It is certainly light hearted, but more suitable for those more interested in mother daughter relationships than I am.

1 of 4 people found this review helpful