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    Really great read

    I really enjoyed this book. I couldn't put it down. I felt the story flowed nicely and kept me hooked. I look forward to the next book.
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    I enjoyed it.

    A wonderful first in a new series. A top notch whodunit with great characters. I cannot wait to read the next one. I voluntarily read an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
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    A Book to remember!

    After a catastrophic love affair, librarian Amy Webber moves in with her aunt in a quiet, historic mountain town in Virginia. She busies herself with managing the local public library that requires all her attention with its severe lack of funds and an overabundance of eccentric patrons. The last thing she needs is a new, available neighbor whose charm lures her into trouble and a murder she has to solve. Dancer-turned-teacher and choreographer Richard Muir inherited the farmhouse next door to Amy from his great-uncle, Paul Dassin. But folklore claims the house’s original owner was poisoned by his wife, who was an outsider who vanished after her sensational 1925 murder trial. Richard determined to clear the name of the woman his great-uncle loved, beseeches Amy to help him investigate the case. Amy is skeptical until their research raises questions about the culpability of the town’s leading families... including her own. When inexplicable murders plunge the quiet town into chaos, Amy and Richard must crack open the books to reveal a cruel conspiracy and lay a turbulent past to rest. -- Series: A Blue Ridge Library Mystery - Book 1 Author: Victoria Gilbert Genre: Cozy Mystery/Career Publisher: Crooked Lane Books A Murder for the Books is a well written highly entertaining book with memorable and remarkable characters. This book is the first installment of Victoria Gilbert’s Blue Ridge Library mysteries. Ms. Gilbert is a talented and creative writer. Her writing is fluid and offers enough detail to keep the reader wanting more. Characters, Amy and Aunt Lydia, are spunky, intriguing and well rounded, with just enough desecration to be unforgettable and captivating. Between the two they create an atmosphere of love and fun as well as general interest. Lydia is perhaps the most interesting character in this book. It will be interesting to see what part she will play in the next book in the series due out in July 2018. Other characters such as Richard and Sunny and perfect and could easily have a series of their own. Richard is a loving, warm, vibrant romantic lead, and Sunny is a ray of well… sunshine. Both characters add to the enjoyment of this book and help move the plot along. The town of Taylorsville, Virginia is small but has a great impact on the story and the reader. It is a place anyone would feel at home in and yet feel like an outsider. It’s one of those places where a new resident will always wonder if they will ever really be accepted by those who have lived there generation after generation. It is a great backdrop for this series. The story is part mystery, part romance with a sprinkling of small-town life. Throughout the book, the reader is captivated by the secrets of the past and the link between the future and the past. It makes the reader wonder about their own hometown and what may be hidden or simply not talked about. There are always things in the past that influence our present and future, but how often do they lead to murder? Overall A Murder for the Books is a fun easy-to-read book. The pace is not always fast, at times it forces the reader to slow down and take in every word. The reveal of the killer for many will be a bit too long. In many ways, it is startling and yet not implausible. I recommend this book to those who enjoy small-town secrets with big city corruption, and a budding romance that could easily end in disaster.
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    First book in A Blue Ridge Library Mystery series

    A Murder for the Books by Victoria Gilbert is the first installment in A Blue Ridge Library Mystery series. Amy Webber is the library director for Taylorsford Public Library in Taylorsford, Virginia. Amy took this position after an incident at Clarion University with her ex-boyfriend, Charles Bartos. Amy is showing Richard Muir, Taylorsford’s newest resident, the archival building and she discovers the building is unlocked. They find the missing Doris Virts (escaped her caregiver again) inside and she has been murdered. Who would have wanted to kill Doris? Richard needs Amy’s help in proving that Eleanora Cooper did not kill her husband (the case is from the 1920s). Eleanora was acquitted of the crime, but the townspeople still did not believe her innocence. Eleanora disappeared after the trial and was never seen again. Richard’s great uncle Paul Dassin had been written a novel based on the trial and he had been in love with Eleanora. Richard inherited his new home from Paul and wants to finally prove Eleanora’s innocence. Is it possible the two crimes are related? Amy and Richard set out to get answers, but someone is not happy with their sleuthing. A Murder for the Books has one of my favorite premises—a library and a librarian as a sleuth. I appreciated the fact the Amy likes to solve mysteries (so do I). The book takes place over a matter of weeks as Richard and Amy look into the two murder cases. I did feel the book was a little too long and could have used some editing (and rewriting). There was too much speculation, reiteration, gardening, dancing and admiration of Richard’s physique. The writing is nice, but the pace was sluggish. The action picks up towards the end of the story, and then it slows back down again (the author dragged out the capture of the killer). I did like the library, town, and especially Aunt Lydia (great character). The mysteries had some intriguing aspects. However, readers will have no problem solving them long before the reveal (which I find disappointing). I wish the author had thrown a twist in towards the end to surprise readers. I felt the romance was too pronounced and it progressed at a rapid pace. I prefer a romance that plays out slowly over the course of a series (let the characters get to know each other first before they progress to the next level). It seems that Amy is rushing into a new relationship after getting out of a bad one (that caused her to move to another town and get a new job). Richard comes across as a creepy at times and slightly cheesy (especially his lines). The ghost element never came alive for me. It was there (more pronounced at the end), but it felt forced (the author did not pull it off). I believe the author tried to put too many plots into one book (I only summarized the main points). I am giving A Murder for the Books 3 out of 5 stars. I am interested enough, though, to read the next book in A Blue Ridge Library Mystery series which is Shelved Under Murder.
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