The Lies That Bind (Bibliphile Mystery, Book 3)
by Kate Carlisle
Release Date: November 24, 2010
2010 Obsidian Mystery
Paperback Edition; 294 Pages
Source: Review Copy from Publisher
4 / 5 Stars
When it comes to rare books and antiquities, Brooklyn Wainwright is a master. That's why she has returned to San Francisco to teach bookbinding class at Bay Area Book Arts. Unfortunately, BABA director Layla Fontaine is a horrendous host who pitches fits and lords it over her subordinates. With the help of her beau, Derek Stone, Brooklyn manages to put on a brave face and endure.
But someone else is not so forgiving. Layla is found dead from a gunshot wound, and Brooklyn is bound and determined to investigate. But when Layla's past ends up intertwined with Derek's, Brooklyn realizes that the case is much more personal than she thought - and the killer might want to close the book on her for good.
This third installment to The Bibliophile Mystery Series, The Lies That Bind, was very interesting and a lot of fun. I enjoyed the variety of characters and learned a lot about the intricacies of bookbinding and restoring precious old books along the way. Who knew working with books could be so dangerous?
Although touted as a mystery story, I certainly enjoyed this novel for many reasons. The humour and witty sarcasm made me laugh and the continuous interruptions to our lovebirds, Derek and Brooklyn, as they tried to get together for date after date was comical. There did come a point in the novel though, where I was feeling like the interruptions were overdone and wanted to get the romance going. There's only so much of that a reader can take in one novel. Brooklyn was a sympathetic character who was feeling like someone was out to get her as she always seemed to be around to discover the bodies. Her cries of "Why me?" certainly found a sympathetic ear in the gorgeous Commander Derek Stone, who returns in this novel as Brooklyn's love interest. Maybe in the next book, these two will actually get to have a complete date. Brooklyn does send out some sparks, some not so friendly, as she decides to investigate on her own. I personally love the scenes where she and Derek discuss some of the risks she has taken and why she should not do that anymore as it's not good for his heart. How funny!!
I also loved Brooklyn's hippie family, especially her mother, whose various interests change on a continuous basis. I just found the humour that surrounds the darker elements in this novel, really lightens the mood and makes the novel, which could be dreary, into something fun and entertaining. And the body count does add up in this novel where it would seem that one should be afraid to go to work at BABA as it would not be safe. While I did find some elements to be predictable, it did take me a little while to guess the murderer in this who-dun-it and even then, I wasn't sure until the end. It was a clever little novel with a lot of funny moments that tend to steer you in the wrong direction.
I really enjoyed this novel, especially Brooklyn's family and the ever-so-sexy Derek Stone. There were a lot of humourous moments and its quirky characters made it fun and entertaining. Although it could be classified as a stand-alone novel, I highly recommend reading the first two novels in this series, Homicide in Hardcover and If Books Could Kill, before reading this one. I am definitely looking forward to reading Murder Under Cover when it releases in May 2011.