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Sharing our love for authors, and the stories they are inspired to tell.

A Body At The Tea Rooms
by Dee MacDonald
First Lines

image of a woman sat reading by an open window - caption reads 'will these first few lines capture our imagination' - used as the image for Book Beginnings / First Lines, posts

This is a meme for all you ‘First Page Browsers‘

Cover image of the book 'A Body At The Tea Rooms' by author Dee MacDonald




“No matter how great a holiday was, it was always good to come home, Kate thought, as she got her first glimpse of the wild Cornish Atlantic coast again at close quarters. It was January and the sea was grey and surly, in contrast to the blue of the Pacific which they’d left behind.

Lower Tinworthy was a Cornish seaside village of houses and cottages scattered on the lush green hillsides above the River Pol. Kate had recently moved to Lavender Cottage, a postcard-worthy building which overlooked the local shops, the ancient bridge across the river, the sandy beach and the sea. She’d fallen in love with the view the first time she’d seen it and, nearly a year later, it still had the power to make her heart lift.

Kate and her travelling companion, Woody Forrest, had been lucky enough to get a lift all the way back from Heathrow from Aaron Hedgefield, a local businessman who’d flown in from Los Angeles on the same flight. He’d rescued them from hours on the National Express coach to Exeter, for which Kate was very thankful!

Now, as Aaron Hedgefield dropped them off outside Lavender Cottage, Kate took a deep breath of damp Cornish air, looked fondly at the old stone building and the little walled garden, and pushed open the green-painted gate”

Cover image of the book 'A Body At The Tea Rooms' by author Dee MacDonald

So, you have taken a sneak peek, would you read the book?

Let me know what you think in the comments section below.

Just to give you an extra helping hand, here is the book’s premise …

Image of author Dee MacDonald November 2020


Cover image of the book 'A Body At The Tea Rooms' by author Dee MacDonaldNurse Kate Palmer has only been living in Lower Tinworthy, a beautiful little village by the sparkling Cornish sea, for a short time but she’s already making a name for herself as the local Miss Marple. Although not everyone is keen on her recent investigations, least of all the new Detective Inspector Bill Robson.

When a body is found at her sister Angie’s newly purchased tea rooms, Kate is at first reluctant to get caught up in another mystery. But the murder is uncomfortably close to home and there’s gossip suggesting Angie and her latest boyfriend are somehow involved.

Determined to find justice for the deceased man and to protect her sister’s reputation, Kate recruits her close friend retired Detective Inspector ‘Woody’ Forrest. His knowledge of the local seaside villages will help her to come up with a list of potential names for the victim… and the murderer.

As they narrow down the possibilities, one of Kate’s patients, Mark Edderley, reveals a connection to her prime suspect. Days later, he dies in a suspicious boating accident. Kate is certain the murderer has struck again! 

But just as she’s about to solve the puzzle, Angie goes missing. Can she get to her sister before it’s too late?

A picture button for book beginnings at Rose City Reader

You might also like to visit the meme host, Gilion, over at ‘Rose City Reader‘, where you can share links to the book beginnings from her own reading schedule and that of many of our fellow bloggers.

There are always plenty of new authors and titles to be discovered and you never know where that next ‘must read’ is going to come from!

Written by

I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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  • Everything started perfectly…then one murder after the other in a small beautiful town. What a life! I bet that Angie and her boyfriend have some secrets, but nothing to do with the murder..This Mr. Aaron Hedgefield sounds really fishy though….

    • Hi Angie,

      Of course I am biased about any book set in Cornwall, as it is one of my most favourite parts of the country for its amazing coastline and great micro climate. I am also hooked on the character of Kate Palmer, amateur sleuth extraordinaire.

      Kate’s sister Angie and her latest boyfriend, Fergal, are very ‘off the wall’ and Kate does spend a lot of her time bailing them out of difficult situations – but murder? – I couldn’t possibly say!

      I wonder why you think Aaron Hedgefield is a bit dodgy though, after all he only gave them a lift home from the airport – didn’t he? 🙂

      My Blog Tour Review is due out in May, so you’ll just have to wait until then to see if either of your suspects are the real murderer!

      Thanks for stopping by and have a good weekend 🙂

  • This sounds like a great story. Its also been a long time since I last saw any mention of Miss Marple. It makes me nostalgic for the TV series.

    • Hi Breana,

      It is strange that still so many of the modern day amateur sleuths get compared to one or the other of Agatha Christie’s characters, such was her reputation.

      I do think that of the many new characters I have encountered in my recent murder/mystery reading, Kate is definitely the one I would most associate with ‘Miss Marple’, although I still think she is a little too modern and glamorous for a perfect match!

      This is a lovely series and I shall be following it closely, as Kate definitely has a ‘nose for trouble!’

      Thanks for stopping by, I appreciate your comment and hope you have a good weekend 🙂

    • Hi Anca,

      The cover definitely suits the Cornish location of the story, even though the author uses a fictional place name, which is a bit of a shame.

      It seems as though Kate’s sister, Angie is prone to getting herself into one scrape or another and Kate spends a fair amount of her time bailing her out. This story takes things to a whole new level of danger, even for Angie, although she rather does place herself at the centre of things because she just can’t keep her nose out of Kate’s investigations. But then, Kate herself can’t help but regularly get herself involved with local police investigations, so she can’t really complain about Angie too much!

      Thanks for your valued comment and support and I hope that your weekend is good too! 🙂

    • Hi Lorraine,

      We don’t live too far away from Cornwall and it is always one of my favourite places to visit and the one thing I have really missed during this year long lockdown. Unfortunately as we have all been told to ‘staycation’ this year, it will also be one of the busiest places in the country with holidaymakers when everything re-opens, so we shall choose our time to visit very carefully.

      This is a great series and Kate makes a lovely amateur sleuth. For me this is one step up from a cozy mystery, I would call it a ‘traditional’ murder mystery, and I shall be following the series with interest!

      Thanks for taking the time to stop by, I appreciate your support and I hope that all is well with you 🙂

    • Hi Kelly,

      To me, this series has a little more substance than those I would call ‘fluffy’ cozy mysteries, much more like a traditional murder/mystery, a la Agatha Christie style, although Kate is definitely a lot more trendy than Miss Marple, even if she is just as interfering and nosy!

      I have read this one for a Blog Tour Review in May and I am definitely invested in the series!

      Thanks for visiting and enjoy your weekend 🙂

  • Oh yes, returning home after a vacation is always a bit of a relief (although I also feel a bit of a letdown too). I wouldn’t mind returning to Lavender Cottage. It sounds like a lovely place and I love the description of the area. A Body at the Tea Rooms sounds like a fun cozy mystery. I would be interested in giving it a try. I hope you are enjoying it, Yvonne!

    • Hi Wendy,

      As you say, it is lovely to get a break from reality and go away, however it is also quite nice to put the key in your own front door and get back into your own space. If only all the unpacking and laundry would do itself, then all would be perfect 🙂

      This is the second book I have read from the ‘Kate Palmer’ series and I am really enjoying both the characters author Dee MacDonald has created and her style of writing, so I shall be following the series with interest.

      I have finished reading this one and I am putting together my final review as part of the May Blog Tour. I can’t believe I have bookings through into October already!

      Thanks for stopping by, it is great to chat and I hope that all is well with you 🙂

    • Hi Anne,

      That’s a great way to describe this series exactly – ‘inviting’!

      When Kate and Woody are together discussing a case, it’s just like putting on a pair of comfy slippers, curling up on the sofa and listening in to their conversation.

      Thanks for stopping by, I always value your visits 🙂

    • Hi Mariya,

      It is great to ‘meet’ you and thank you so much for stopping by today, I appreciate your comment, it is always good to make new bookish friends 🙂

      This is a great series. ‘Kate Palmer’ is a very nosy amateur sleuth, who always ‘gets her man’ in the end, although she does get into some very dangerous situations along the way!

      If you enjoy reading a good murder/mystery that’s not too heavy going, then I think you might enjoy these stories.

      Have a great weekend won’t you 🙂

      PS. I tried to leave a comment on your own ‘Book Beginnings On Friday’ feature, but couldn’t access any of the comment modes, so I’m not sure what’s going on there? 🙂

Written by Yvonne