I just finished reading Homicide in Hardcover by Kate Carlisle with the tagline of A Bibliophile Mystery.
Opening lines: My teacher always told me that in order to save a patient you'd have to kill him first. Not the most child-friendly way of explaining his theory of book restoration to his eight year old apprentice, but it worked. I grew up determined to save them all.
One of the reasons I was attracted to this book was the fact that the heroine is a rare book expert, who restores and conserves old books; two other reasons are: I love murder mysteries and it's set in San Francisco.
Brooklyn Wainwright is the main character who finds Abraham, "her mentor lying in a pool of his own blood." With his last breath, he whispers "Remember the devil" and gives her Goethe's Faust. Abraham had been working on The Winslow Collection of books for an upcoming exhibit. One of the books in the collection is Goethe's Faust, which, legend has it, is cursed. All who've owned the book have died. Brooklyn is asked to take over the restoration project and finish Abraham's work with the Faust.
We are introduced to several characters who may or may not have a motive for killing Abraham including: Minka, Brooklyn's nemesis from college; the Winslows; Abraham's rival Enrico; and Brooklyn's own mother. Then there's the British Derek Stone, a former military operative, who now runs his own security company and is in charge of The Winslow Collection. Derek also gets to have a romantic moment or two with Brooklyn.
My only nit with this book is that there's not a lot of actual mystery-solving or investigating happening with the main characters. It's focus is more on Brooklyn's life (who grew up on a commune), her family, (who still live on the commune) and people trying to harm or kill Brooklyn.
Overall, I enjoyed reading Homicide in Hardcover. The book is a fun read and the first in a series of books. It's well-written with definitive characters and plot. I'll definitely be reading others in the series.
I'm linking up to the following blogs:
Literary Friday at Art @ Home
Book Beginnings at Rose City Reader
Saturday Review at Semicolon
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