Lorna Barrett is the pseudonym of author Lorraine Bartlett aka L.L. Bartlett who pens psychological suspense & the Jeff Resnick mystery series.
Let me say, I'd love to visit the charming town of Stoneham, New Hampshire. I mean after all, I'd be living in Kate Borden's incredible Cobbs's Landing so a day trip by bus or a stay @ The Brookside Inn for a four-day weekend would be sheer paradise.
Stoneham is known as "Booktown" & consists of many used bookstores ~ think Hay-On-Wye in Wales. Oh, my deliciousness. Talk about a bibliophile's b spot.
The characters are appealing. An author can write the most gripping mystery, but w/o amiable characters it's going to fall as flat as an undercooked souffle.
Tricia Miles is a welcome addition to the cozy scene, but I must say Tricia's older sister, Angelica, tends to steal some of the spotlight.
Angelica is an amusing character w/ a quirky sense of humor that endears her to you.
Angelica's presence enhances Tricia's character by giving her more depth & allows Ms. Barrett to break free from the emergence of "cookie cutter" mystery scribes.
What I love about the sisters most is they are authentic. Tricia & Angelica have an intricate relationship that will take some time to resolve ~ no "hugs & kisses" all better in time for the ending phony bologna. Which is so refreshing.
Tricia's regular customer, Mr. Everett is an absolute stellar standout.
Tricia's employee Ginny is entertaining. I am champing at the bit to learn more about both of them.
Kudos to Ms. Barrett for layering on some clever twists.
I loved Murder Is Binding but the writing was a bit flawed. I'm a stickler for rhythmic writing.
There were moments of disjointed grammar that aggravated me & I did stop to reread.
I blame this on the proofreader not on Ms. Barrett.
I'm a bit anal about awkward writing & strong writing is unquestionably essential for all of my reading indulgences. It not only makes or breaks the book, it sets the bar on buying anymore of the author's work.
Murder Is Binding is a terrific debut despite the grammatical flaws.
Effie, July 6, 2008 (view all comments by Effie)
An entertaining little page-turner, despite a bit of a slow start. It's set in a murder mystery bookstore in a row of bookstores in a sleepy little New Hampshire town. And there's a cat named Miss Marple.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No (1 of 3 readers found this comment helpful)
"Publishers Weekly Review"
by Publishers Weekly,
"Stoneham, N.H., the picturesque setting of the pseudonymous Barrett's charming first in a new series, boasts a newly renovated main street devoted to a variety of bookstores. When Tricia Miles — mystery bookstore proprietor and city refugee — discovers her unpleasant cookbook store neighbor stabbed to death and a rare book missing, Tricia soon finds herself under the sheriff's surveillance and dubbed the village jinx. Determined to clear her name and track down the stolen cookbook, Tricia enlists a few friendly locals to aid in her investigation. When her difficult older sister, Angelica, arrives unexpectedly, Tricia worries she's in for another headache, but Angelica turns out to be a willing conspirator in Tricia's search for answers. The mix of books, cooking and an engaging whodunit will leave cozy fans eager for the next installment." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Tricia Milesand#151;owner of Havenand#8217;t Got a Clue, the best mystery bookstore in Stoneham, New Hampshireand#151;once again plays amateur sleuth as she is unexpectedly reunited with a man from a chapter of her life she closed long agoand#133;
The town of Stoneham is a haven for bookstores, but it is sadly lacking in bed-and-breakfasts. Fortunately Pippa and Jon Comfortand#8217;s Sheer Comfort Inn is about to open, and the couple has offered some locals a free night as a trial run.
But it wonand#8217;t be so easy to sleep after Tricia makes two startling discoveries: Pippaand#8217;s murdered body in the backyard, and the fact that Pippaand#8217;s husband, Jon, is actually Harry Tyler, a man Tricia lovedand#151;and believed deadand#151;for nearly twenty years.
Though Harry is the prime suspect, Tricia doesnand#8217;t believe him capable of murder, even though heand#8217;s led a life of lies. Especially when she discovers that Pippa had a few secrets of her ownand#151;some that may have been worth killing for.
The streets of Stoneham, New Hampsire are lined with bookstores...and paved with murder.
When she moved to Stoneham, city slicker Tricia Miles met nothing but friendly faces. And when she opened her mystery bookstore, she met friendly competition. But when she finds Doris Gleason dead in her own cookbook store, killed by a carving knife, the atmosphere seems more cutthroat than cordial. Someone wanted to get their hands on the rare cookbook that Doris had recently purchased-and the locals think that someone is Tricia. To clear her name, Tricia will have to take a page out of one of her own mysteries-and hunt down someone who isn't killing by the book.
Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.