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Death of a Mad Hatter

(Hat Shop Mystery #2)

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  2,660 ratings  ·  285 reviews

Scarlett Parker and her British cousin, Vivian Tremont, are hard at work at Mim’s Whims—their ladies’ hat shop on London’s chic Portobello Road—to create hats for an Alice in Wonderland themed afternoon tea, a fund-raiser for a local children’s hospital. It seems like a wonderfully whimsical way to pass the hat, and Scarlett and Viv are delighted to outfi
Paperback, 281 pages
Published May 6th 2014 by Berkley (first published May 1st 2014)
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Average rating 3.96  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,660 ratings  ·  285 reviews

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Feb 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
4 out of 5 stars to Death of a Mad Hatter, the 2nd book in the "Hat Shop" cozy mystery series, written in 2014 by Jenn McKinlay. I enjoyed this book and it was a good, traditional cozy read full of fun characters and some great family drama. And it made me think of the wonderful adaption of the Alice in Wonderland books... (been told this might border on the spoiler side, so read at your own risk. I don't think it gives too much away).

Why This Book
I'm a fan of Jenn McKinlay's writing
Feb 01, 2014 rated it really liked it

Jenn McKinlay appeases my inner Anglophile with her newest addition to her Hat Shop Mystery series with "Death of a Mad Hatter". Added to the mix this time around is the whimsical theme of Alice in Wonderland tea party thrown by the wealthy Grisby family for a new local hospital wing. The cousins Scarlett and Viv are put in charge of creating hats in the theme of Alice. The perfect afternoon tea is ruined when the Grisby heir is found dead having been poisoned with the Mad Hatter hat having tra
Amanda McGill
Mar 01, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015
A cute cozy mystery. I really like Scarlett and her cousin. The mystery kept me guessing until the end of the novel. Really enjoying Jenn McKinlay and will be continuing on with this series.
Jan 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Loved loved the characters! London is one of my favorite cities in the world and it was wonderful to read about a slice of London life on Portobello road in London.

This was the first time I read anything by Jenn McKinlay. Now I want to read all of the Hat Shop books!
Aug 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: tlc-bingo
I really do enjoy this series. The characters are great, quirky and original, and they make me want to join them for tea. The mystery this time was so full of red herrings that I was still twisting around until the final reveal. I'll definitely be returning to the Hat Shop very soon. ...more
Feb 14, 2020 rated it really liked it
Scarlett and her cousin are working on hats for an Alice in Wonderland tea to raise money for a new hospital wing. They are making hats for the Grisby family, but the heir is poisoned. the poison is found on one of the hats they made for him. So they try to find out who did, going to great lengths to find out who could have got ahold of the poison and why.
Feb 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Death And the Mad Hatter is the second book in the A Hat Shop Mystery series.

As always, another great book from Jenn McKinlay.

Scarlett and Viv have been engaged by Dottie Grisby to provide hats for her and her family for a tea she is planning in honor of her late husband. The tea will have a Alice In Wonderland theme and the hat will carry out that theme. I think that this family could easily be referred to as, dysfunctional. Dottie, ever since her husband moved to Italy to live with his mistres
May 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: z2014, gr-read
Enjoyed this second entry in the series. There are just enough references to London locations and British colloquialisms. Like how Scarlett's effort to understand British sayings explains it to US readers as well. McKinlay is an excellent writer - there is just enough in this book: just enough description to place you there, just enough suspects, just enough motives. She doesn't over explain motivations or actions but let's the story flow. Love all of the recurring characters and their interacti ...more
I really enjoyed "Death of a Mad Hatter", probably a little more than the first book in the series. Scarlet sounds a bit whiny and immature at times but that didn't spoil the fun for me. I also found the plot to be well thought of and I was surprised at the murderer's identity. Jenn McKinlay's hat shop mystery series has the added bonus of taking me back to London's exquisite atmosphere. Her writing talent really shines in this series! ...more
Jun 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mgr, cozy-mystery
I love these characters so much.
Sep 30, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery
I generally like British mysteries a lot, which is why I read this one. Clearly it's my mistake; almost all readers have liked it, and I found it a chore to get through. I should have picked better, I guess.

I can't think of anything I liked about this book. The characters are cartoons, the prose is smarmy and cloying, the dialogues are silly, and the characters are vapid (more concerned with what they are wearing than what they are saying). There are a great many lines clearly intended to be wit
Aug 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
Really liked this second book in the series! Love the London setting and the characters. The mystery kept me guessing and there was some good personal drama going on as well. Can't wait to read the next! ...more
Kim Galla
Jul 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017-leaps
I love the comical banter of this quirky extended hatter family. The characters are developing nicely, the storyline is consistent. Looking forward to listening to the next one.
Oct 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Scarlett Parker and Vivian have kept their hat shop going for two months since the first book, Cloche and Dagger when the wealthy Grisby family walks in to get hats made for their Alice in Wonderland party in Death of a Mad Hatter. The family has recently lost the patriarch, Jeffery, who left his family 30 years earlier to live with his mistress in Italy, leaving a son and three daughters and a wife who has never been right in her mind since being abandoned by her husband. In fact, Dottie thinks ...more
Aug 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
I wasn't too impressed with the first book in this series, Cloche & Dagger but this one was pretty darn good. I still like her contemporary / chik lit romance better, but this series seems to be moving along nicely. Looking forward to book 3. ...more
Lily (Night Owl Book Cafe)
I got a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange of an honest review.

Scarlett Parker and the ladies from Mim's Whims is back in another exciting installment. This time the ladies are hard at work to create hats for an Alice in Wonderland themed afternoon tea party that was also a fund-raised for the local children's hospital hosted by a very wealthy family. The girls are very excited about the whimsical project, until they meet the family members of the Grisby Family.

But when the Grisb
Mar 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Book two was still engaging. I enjoy the setting, the plots the author comes up with and especially the supporting characters, who I find delightful!

Scarlett is your typical cozy heroine. She is sometimes intelligent, spunky and sensible in dealing with the murders that inevitably happen around her; other times she's stubborn, foolish and insistent on doing things that put her at risk. I mostly like her. Her sense of humour is similarly sarcastic to mine, and she really cares deeply about the pe
May 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2014
I know I have said probably once or twice that Ms. McKinlay is one helluva cozy writer. With this one she proves that point yet again. And best of all?? There's no sign of a "triangle" in this one! YAAAAYYY!! Usually I'm not terribly crazy about British mysteries. Don't know why, they just usually don't hold my interest that well. I haven't had that problem with these books. All the wonderfully drawn main characters are back for this one. Love them all, even if Scarlett can be awfully childish a ...more
Mystereity Reviews
Apr 10, 2016 rated it liked it
3 1/2 stars

The plot was quite good, but it was overshadowed by the schmaltzy, almost forced, romantic tension between the MC and the token hunky guy. I thought the investigation was a little far-fetched, (let's visit a funeral home to find clues!) but overall, I enjoyed it.

The only big gripe I have is the dialogue and vernacular between characters. I'm sorry, but you can't insert things like "codswallop" into a person's dialogue and expect that will make them sound British. And, in this book, it
Kara ✨
Jul 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Hat Shop Mystery #2/6 🎩

I enjoyed this more than book one by far! McKinlay’s writing is fast-paced and keeps me hooked. I honestly didn’t want to stop reading. If all her novels are this delightful, I’ll be a fan for life!

The story was more fleshed out, including the character dynamics, the actual murder aspect, and the setting. McKinlay allowed the reader to explore more of London, consider a more complex murder, and fall more in love with the unique (if not maddening and lovable) characters. S
Nov 30, 2014 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: fans of series
I liked this one. I began this series because I've enjoyed the Library Lovers series by the same author. I do think that's the better of the two (perhaps not quite fair an assessment though, as this one hasn't got as far yet), still, I think this one is worth the read. I felt there was a bit more to the mystery in this one in comparison with the last and I will definitely read the next entry in the series. Definitely recommended if you're looking for a cozy mystery to add to your weekend. ...more
Apr 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Enjoyed the second installment in the series! Scarlet and the gang are dragged into a clients family drama ending in murder. Once again she feels compelled to investigate and her lack of impulse control gets scarlet into trouble. A fun story that has me looking forward to the next in the series! Recommend for cozy mystery fans!
Ruth Ellen
Nov 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
a hat maker and her cousin create hats for a specfic tea party. A death occurs and suddeningly questions arise. It was a very good read. Enjoyed it.
Not as good as the first one in series but still a fun cozy. Scarlett is a tad whiney in this story which got on my nerves at times. Her relationship with Harrison is moving along nicely which makes for a good subplot. The murder of a horrid husband wasn’t that much of a waste and I had an idea who poisoned him so it was a tad predictable. I like how it wove the Alice in wonderland theme for hat shop connection. Solid writing for this genre.
Nov 17, 2020 rated it it was ok
Despite the hat game being on point, this is my new metric for what a 2/5 star cozy is. The characters are very well fleshed out and likeable (for the most part), but everything else is just...meh. I want more cozy in my cozy and this one was definitely not cozy enough on the cozy spectrum. I came to steep myself in some London coziness, and for hats, and I only got the hats. Shame, really.
Alison (Lady Coffin) S
Mar 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
Cute Cozy Mystery, set in London England, Cousins, Hat shop
Lesa Divine
My 6th cozy mystery book completed today during my 24 hour cozy mystery readathon.
I think I put myself into a cozy mystery slump or I just didn't like this one much.

Interesting using Alice and Wonderland as a theme with the mad hatter but if course someone dies and Scarlett looking to find out who murdered the cheating husband with a unsettling background.
Just okay but I won't be finishing this series.
Apr 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cozies
his is the second book in the hat shop series. Scarlett works with her cousin at their hat shop in London. They are creating hats for an Alice in Wonderland themed tea. Everything is going great at the tea until someone ends up dead. It appears the victim has been poisoned and traces of the poison have been found on the hat Scarlett and her cousin had made. The police think they were somehow involved in his death.

Scarlett starts looking into the death despite being warned not to by Harrison, and
Jul 21, 2015 rated it liked it
Scarlett has settled into life in London at her family's hat shop. She handles customer relations while Viv and apprentice Fee create the hats. Scarlett needs to summon all her customer service skills to work with the eccentric Grisby family. Matriarch Dotty is as dotty as her name - she thinks Viv is her old friend Ginny, Scarlett and Viv's Mim. The Grisbys are throwing an Alice in Wonderland tea party to raise money for a new hospital wing in the name of Dotty's recently deceased husband Geoff ...more
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Jenn is the New York Times, USA Today, and Publisher's Weekly bestselling author of several mystery and romance series and will be debuting a stand alone romantic comedy in July 2020 entitled PARIS IS ALWAYS A GOOD IDEA. She lives in sunny Arizona in a house that is overrun with kids, pets and her husband's guitars. ...more

Other books in the series

Hat Shop Mystery (6 books)
  • Cloche and Dagger (Hat Shop Mystery, #1)
  • At the Drop of a Hat (Hat Shop Mystery, #3)
  • Copy Cap Murder (Hat Shop Mystery, #4)
  • Assault & Beret (Hat Shop Mystery, #5)
  • Buried to the Brim (Hat Shop Mystery, #6)

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