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Arsenic for Tea

Written by Robin Stevens

Part of the Murder Most Unladylike Mystery Series

Crime / Mystery Featured Books for 11+ readers Featured Books for 9+ readers Recommended Children's eBooks School Stories

LoveReading View on Arsenic for Tea

The many readers enthralled by schoolgirl detectives Daisy Wells and Hazel Wong’s first adventure Murder Most Unladylike will be thrilled to discover this new book, which offers another clever dose of subterfuge, murder and top-rate detection. While the original adventure took place at Daisy and Hazel’s school, Robin Stevens cleverly moves the setting for the follow-up to Daisy’s family home, a proper aristocratic pile, grand and shabby in equal measures. When a guest is poisoned Daisy and Hazel are immediately on the case. The girls are irresistible characters, perfect foils for each other, and as sharp as any of the great detectives. Owing more to Agatha Christie than Enid Blyton, and full of acute comments on the social customs of the times too, very little can beat this series for thrills and satisfaction.  ~ Andrea Reece

EXCITING NEWS: This boarding school mysteries series Murder Most Unladylike is set for the big screen having been optioned for television and film by independent production company Pilot Media.  Pilot Media optioned the rights from Emily Hayward Whitlock, head of book to film at The Artists’ Partnership, who was acting on behalf of Stevens’ literary agent, Gemma Cooper at The Bent Agency.

Cooper said she was “thrilled” to be working with Pilot Media and Salt Beef TV; the latter will co-produce any adaptation with Pilot. “With a diverse cast, opulent settings and a gloriously nostalgic feel, I always thought this series was perfect for adaptation,” she said.  The Murder Most Unladylike series is set in a 1930s boarding school and features schoolgirl detectives Daisy Wells and Hazel Wong. The first three books in the series—Murder Most Unladylike, Arsenic for Tea and First Class Murder."

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Arsenic for Tea Synopsis

Schoolgirl detectives Daisy Wells and Hazel Wong are at Daisy's home, Fallingford, for the holidays. Daisy's glamorous mother is throwing a tea party for Daisy's birthday, and the whole family is invited, from eccentric Aunt Saskia to dashing Uncle Felix. But it soon becomes clear that this party isn't really about Daisy at all. Naturally, Daisy is furious. Then one of their party falls seriously, mysteriously ill - and everything points to poison. With wild storms preventing anyone from leaving, or the police from arriving, Fallingford suddenly feels like a very dangerous place to be. Not a single person present is what they seem - and everyone has a secret or two. And when someone very close to Daisy looks suspicious, the Detective Society must do everything they can to reveal the truth ...no matter the consequences.

Arsenic for Tea Reader Reviews

Kids love to read and so in addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Lovereading4kids Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review the first title in this exciting series Murder Most Unladylike. You can read their full reviews by clicking here.

  • Chloe, age 11 - 'Daisy and Hazel have formed a detective society but they haven't had any real cases yet. All that changes when Hazel discovers a dead body. This book is epic!'
  • Edgar Perez, age 7 - 'It is AMAZING! The best part was the ending…'
  • Bella Perez, age 10 - 'I loved Murder Most Unladylike. It puts you in a lot of suspense and has a very surprising end.'
  • Sabrina, age 11 - 'This brilliant book is a mixture of adventure, humour and mystery all-in-one; these are probably my three favourite genres so of course I absolutely loved this book! It’s gripping, exciting and has many tense moments which keep you on tenterhooks throughout the book.'
  • Izzie Wood - 'I really enjoyed this book it was great.'
  • Isabel, age 8 - 'A very exciting read.'
  • Charlotte Cassidy, age 10 - 'A crime-riddled murder mystery that I couldn’t put down and kept me guessing until the end. Brilliant book for girls aged 9+.'
  • Cajsa Age 10 - 'This book was ideal for my age. Even though it is a murder story it wasn't at all gory! This book is a great read.'
  • Emily Pitfield, age 10 - 'A fantastic and gripping murder mystery story which will prove tricky to put down, especially as the story draws to a close.'
  • Sophis Curtis, age 9 - 'I think this book is amazing and any girl 9+ would like it too.'
  • Elspeth Paterson, age 11 - 'I really loved this mysterious book called “Murder Most Unladylike”, and give it 5 out of 5. This book is aimed at older readers and as suggested by the title there is a murder, in fact there’s more than one.'
  • Faghra Saleem, age 12 - 'Murder Most Unladylike is a thrilling roller coaster ride of a read with twists at every turn till it all comes down to a dramatic conclusion on who the mystery murderer was.'
  • Holly Wilkins, age 11 - 'This is one of my favourite books ever, you always want to read on and never stop!'

Arsenic for Tea Press Reviews

The second book in Robin Stevens fabulous Wells and Wong schoolgirl detective series - think St Trinians mixed with Miss Marple. These are thrilling books for tween detectives who adore solving dastardly murders, jolly hockey sticks and iced buns for tea Guardian

A delight ... The Agatha Christie-style clues are unravelled with sustained tension and the whole thing is a hoot from start to finish -- Sally Morris Daily Mail

A feelgood blend of Malory Towers and Cluedo ... Stevens has upped her game in this new volume Telegraph

An entertaining, nostalgic brainteaser Sunday Times

A feast for readers -- Amanda Craig New Statesman

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9780141369792
Publication date: 18/02/2016
Publisher: Puffin an imprint of Penguin Books Ltd
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9780141369792
Publication date: 18th February 2016
Author: Robin Stevens
Publisher: Puffin an imprint of Penguin Books Ltd
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 368 pages
Suitable for: 11+ readers, 9+ readers
Genres: Crime / Mystery, School Stories
Recommendations: eBooks, Reviewed by Children

About Robin Stevens

Robin Stevens was born in California and grew up in an Oxford college, across the road from the house where Alice in Wonderland lived. She has been making up stories all her life. When she was twelve, her father handed her a copy of The Murder of Roger Ackroyd and she realised that she wanted to be either Hercule Poirot or Agatha Christie when she grew up. When it occurred to her that she was never going to be able to grow her own spectacular walrus moustache, she decided that Agatha Christie was the more achievable option. She spent her ...

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