Friday, October 1, 2021

Book Review and Giveaway - A Perfect Bind (A Beloved Bookroom Mystery) by Dorothy St. James

My Review

A Perfect Bind is a cozy mystery featuring Tru Beckett. Tru is a librarian in a small town in South Carolina. As a lover of printed books, she makes a secret bookroom for old books in the library basement when her branch goes digital. After the bookroom is vandalized more than once, a body is found, and Tru goes on the hunt for the killer, along with her friends Flossie and Tori. Their motto is always WWMMD (What Would Miss Marple Do?). 

I wanted to read this mystery because I enjoyed the first book in the series so much. The secret bookroom is a clever idea and the library setting is appealing. I always am partial to southern mysteries too.

This was a fun read. Tru and her friends Flossie and Tori are back to solve another mystery. I enjoy these characters and their friendship. I also like Tru's slowly developing romance with her high school crush, Jace, who is now a police detectove in the little town of Cypress. The addition of a lovable cat - with the cute name Dewey Decimel - makes the book even more appealing.

The mystery aspect of the story was set up perfectly with several possible suspects. I figured out the killer before Tru did but enjoyed watching her solve the case. Tru has a knack for getting herself in danger, and that happened again in this book.

As someone interested in history and the past, I loved the town history and the story of the basement area of the library.  Before it was a secret bookroom or a storage area, it was a bomb shelter, and long before that, it was an illegal speakeasy!

"'I think we can get it tonight . . . right now, even.' I hoped we could. I laid out the photographs I’d been studying. 'Look here. The old speakeasy became one of the new storage rooms in the 1930s. But then, look here. The bomb shelter, with its metal walls, was built in a way that blocks the only door leading into the speakeasy, essentially shutting it off from the outside world forever.'” (eBook location 3916).

I recommend A Perfect Bind, and the first book in the series, The Broken Spine, for fans of cozy mysteries and especially for anyone who loves a library setting. This series is so unique and enjoyable!

Book Synopsis

Librarian Tru Beckett, ardent defender of the printed word, is about to find out that keeping murder checked out of her beloved library is much harder than she thought…  Tru Beckett succeeded in building a secret book room in her now bookless library, where book lovers from lovely Cypress, South Carolina, can rejoice in the printed word. Now she’s working hard to maintain the little library downstairs while keeping her “real job” upstairs in the bookless technology center. The last thing she needs is a mysterious vandal who seems intent on breaking into her secret book-filled sanctuary and creating chaos. The nasty interloper doesn’t steal anything, but brutalizes the books, damaging them and knocking them off shelves. A patron of the secret book room tells Tru that there have been creepy goings-on at the library for years, especially in the basement where the secret book room is located. He’s heard rumors of a poltergeist that haunts the library, determined to scare off readers. Tru is certain it’s hogwash, but she’s at a loss to think of who might be vandalizing the beautiful books she fought so hard to protect.  And when a dead body shows up right behind the library, Tru is certain that it’s not a ghost but a cold-blooded killer that she and her trusty tabby Dewey Decimal will need to uncover.

Author Bio

Dorothy St. James is the author of the White House Gardener Mysteries and the Southern Chocolate Shop Mysteries. She lives in the Lowcountry of South Carolina with her sculptor husband. Dorothy is a member of Mystery Writers of America (MWA) and the International Thriller Writers (ITW) and Sister’s in Crime (SInC). This is her second Beloved Bookroom Mystery.

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