Tainted Tea For Two, my best-selling mystery romance, is my homage to Agatha Christie and the English murder mystery genre. So, to get started on this insider scoop on my novel, why don’t you prepare a hot cup of delicious tea--not tainted, of course--and I’ll begin!
One of the genres that I always wanted to write was an English murder mystery, a la Ms. Christie. Before I start a project, I like to come up with a working title. Many of the mysteries I’ve read had menacingly playful titles, so TAINTED TEA FOR TWO just popped into my head. Naturally, this meant poison had to play a role in the novel! And not just poison... but injections, and, oddly enough, potatoes!
For my “What if” scenario, I proposed: what if having a nice spot of tea took on a sinister meaning? Hard Shell Word Factory loved the idea, and soon published TAINTED TEA FOR TWO, both electronically and in print.
While in England, a personal trainer finds romance... and murder. Can she prove her innocence?
After a few years, TAINTED TEA FOR TWO was picked up by Uncial Press. Its new cover won an Ariana Award for Best Contemporary /Suspense /Mystery /Historical Romance.
Someone wants Lord Embrey dead. Will the method of execution be by poison, or injection, or... potato??
In addition to winning the Ariana Award, TAINTED TEA FOR TWO has been a best-seller over the years and has received 5 star reviews with The Romance Studio and Word on Romance. The book video I created for this mystery earned a Cameo Awards nomination for the Best Romantic Suspense in the Amateur Division.
As always, there are small snippets from my life embedded into this novel. The heroine, Ms. Marty Jackson, is a personal fitness trainer. Her name is Marty because her father--a former Mr. Universe--wanted a son to carry on his name. Although I’m not a trainer, I do have a fitness background, having worked for thirteen years for an exercise program shown on public television.
Marty also has a cherished possession similar to one that I have... or had, given to me by my daughter.
Marty took out her most prized possession: a paperweight in the shape of a giant, clear crystal. She held it upside down, and the colorful pearls suspended inside gently floated to the bottom. A kid's toy, of course, but she never went anywhere without it. It was the last thing her father had given her.
She gave it a place of honor on the nightstand...
This isn’t an actual picture of the paperweight, but it’s close enough. As with Marty’s diamond, mine also fell to its doom.
"No!" Marty raced to the window and watched her beloved remembrance of her father shatter into a zillion pieces. Part of her shattered with it.
For a classic English murder mystery, I recommend TAINTED TEA FOR TWO. I hope you enjoy Marty and Gregory’s story.
Susanne Marie Knight
Read outside the box: award-winning Romance Writing With A Twist!