Monday, January 28, 2013

Book Review: The Book Thing by Laura Lippman

The Book Thing is yet another eBook short in the Bibliomysteries series; a series that I’ve really come to love. There’s nothing like a good short story, and when its subject matter is books, then it’s even better.

The author tells us the story of a neighborhood children’s bookshop in North Baltimore, where her trademark heroine Tess Monaghan, buys the goods for her daughter, Carla Scout. Tess thinks that it’s great that places like this still exist, and she does everything she possibly can to support it.

However noble her actions may be though, the bookshop is in jeopardy, not only because of the competition from the eBook market, but also because someone is stealing many books every now and then, without ever being caught. Tess decides to work the case pro bono, in order to set things right. So she sets shop in the shop, and lies in wait for the perp to show his face.

She doesn’t spend all her time there though, so while the tale unfolds, we get to follow her to her everyday walks around the neighborhood, we meet someone who’s widely known as the Walking Man, and we learn some things about the pessimist owner and the optimist sales girl of the bookshop.

As the story progresses the plot takes a weird turn that even makes Tess stand still for a moment in utter surprise, as the perp is just someone who’s trying to do something right, the wrong way. And he, just like the heroine, has the love of books as his driving force.

If you expect too much action and a deep-seeded mystery in the book at hand, perhaps you’ll be disappointed. However if you want to read a well-written story about lonely souls, and not so desperate people, who find refuge in the pages of the books, you’ll absolutely love it. This is one of the best volumes in the series.

Reviews of other books in the series:

The Book of Virtue by Ken Bruen
An Acceptable Sacrifice by Jeffery Deaver
The Scroll by Anne Perry

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