Bookmarked For Death
by Lorna Barrett
Cover Artist: Teresa Fasolino
Review by Gayle Surrette
Berkley Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9780425226414
Date: 03 February 2009 List Price $6.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK
Tricia Miles owns and operates the mystery bookstore Haven't Got a Clue in Stoneham, New Hampshire, which is trying to revitalize itself around a Main Street of booksellers. To celebrate the store's anniversary, Tricia has managed to host a book signing for a bestselling local author who normally doesn't do signings, Zoë Carter. Everything is going great except for Zoë's irritating niece Kimberly Peters getting on everyone's nerves. That is, it was the only sour note in the evening until they found Zoë strangled in the bathroom. Now, it seems the Sheriff, Wendy Adams is trying to pin the murder on Tricia. So, Tricia has to find the killer to save herself and get her store reopened.
There's been no love lost between the Sheriff and Tricia since the incidents of Murder is Binding, and while the Sheriff won't arrest Tricia without cause, she won't go out of her way to make the investigation easier on her either. So, with her store closed as a crime scene, Tricia puts her free time into trying to find the killer so she can get her store open. It's especially important to get her employees back to work in her store rather than helping her super-controlling sister Angelica in her cookbook store.
Once again Barrett tells a mystery within a mystery. There's the murder and then there is the mystery that comes out as Tricia digs into the life of Zoë Carter. Things don't add up and Tricia begins to believe that Zoë wasn't the person she seemed to be. On the other hand, there are more clues than anyone could expect and they point in many directions. The twists and turns are cleverly done. At the end, you can see the trail leading to the killer but along the way there's so much information that it's difficult to pull out those clues that are important and those that aren't. For me that means this book was intriguing and mentally stimulating.
I enjoy continuing series when there are interesting characters, growing interrelationships, plausible reasons for crime and an amateur to get involved in finding the answers. It's like visiting friends and having an adventure rolled into one book after another. If you haven't tried this series yet, do. If you have you'll enjoy this new adventure.
For the undecided, the book includes recipes for many of the dishes cooked up by Tricia's sister Angelica. I didn't get to try any but they looked great and I will get to at least a few of them over the coming weeks.