Wednesday, September 27, 2023

ARC Review: Caught on the Book by Laura Gail Black

Caught on the Book

Author: Laura Gail Black
Series: Antique Bookshop Mystery (Book 4)
Publication: Crooked Lane Books (October 3, 2023)

Description: For fans of Ellery Adams and Paige Shelton, in Laura Gail Black’s fourth novel in the Antique Bookshop mysteries, Jenna Quinn is going to have to go all out—hook, line, and sinker—in order to catch the killer.

The annual fishing tournament and festival in Hokes Folly, North Carolina, is the high-water mark event of the year. Antiquarian bookseller Jenna Quinn, owner of the Twice Upon a Time bookstore, is ready to catch some new customers with her fishing-themed book display at the festival. That is, until a local author is found dead in his booth.

All fingers point to Frank Sutter, a former detective with the police department. His soon-to-be ex-wife had been dating the victim, and Frank had been seen having an argument with him earlier that day. When Keith Logan, Jenna’s boyfriend and detective with the local police, asks Jenna for help to solve the case, she’s shocked. Frank was Keith’s former partner and someone who had been determined to pin more than one murder on Jenna. Frank doesn’t want Jenna’s help any more than Jenna wants to help him, but the two will have to put aside their animosity for each other if they want to reel in the killer.

This bookselling sleuth knows she will have to cast a wide net in order to catch the killer, even if means dangerously luring them in. Will her novel idea help her catch the killer, or is she bound for a more deadly ending?

My Thoughts: Jenna has brought all of her used fishing books to the annual fishing tournament and expo. When a local author is stabbed to death and Keith's former partner Frank Sutter is arrested for the crime, Keith asks Jenna to investigate since he can't without compromising the police department. Jenna is reluctant since Frank has made her life in her new town very difficult. Jenna was acquitted of murder but Frank thinks she was really guilty and was determined to find something on her. 

Jenna also has to deal with a group picketing outside her shop and looking for signatures on a petition to force Jenna out of town. Then there is the local writers' group who is looking for a new venue for their meetings. Only a number of them are better suspects than Frank for the author's death. 

Jenna investigates her suspects and finds things that help the police with their investigations. I liked her persistence and determination to help a man who had been at all nice to her because her boyfriend asked her to. 

This was an entertaining story with interesting characters and a nicely twisty plot. I really liked Jenna's dog Eddy and I liked that a friend was trying to push her into adopting a kitten too. Fans of cozy mysteries will enjoy this story. 

Favorite Quote:
"Remember when I said it couldn't get worse?" I stepped toward the front window.

Keith sighed. "What now?"

"Lavinia Scoddin and her two besties are picketing my store. They're literally walking in an oval on my sidewalk with big signs."
I received this one in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.

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