Thursday, July 14, 2011

Review and Giveaway: Books Can Be Deceiving

Books Can Be Deceiving (Library Lover's Mysteries - Book 1) by Jenn McKinlay

Publication Date: july 2011
Publisher: Penguin Group USA
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Pages: Paperback, 304pp
ISBN-13: 9780425242186

(Received for review from Berkley Prime Crime)

Purchase: Barnes & Noble, Book Depository, IndieBound

Jenn McKinlay on the WEB: website, blog, facebook, twitter


What is the only word in the English language that ends in -mt?

Answering tricky reference questions like this one is more than enough excitement for recently single librarian Lindsey Norris. That is, until someone in her cozy new hometown of Briar Creek, Connecticut, commits murder, and the most pressing question is whodunit...

Lindsey is just getting into her groove as the director of the Briar Creek Public Library when a vacationing New York editor brings a little buzz to the small town. It's the perfect chance for her friend Beth to sell the children's book she's written. Unfortunately, Beth's boyfriend, Rick, a famous author and local celebrity, tries to stop her. When Lindsey and Beth meet the editor, they uncover the real reason for Rick's bad attitude...

They go to confront Rick at his house on the storied and mysterious Thumb Islands, only to find him murdered. The local chief of police likes Beth for the murderer and isn't interested in looking elsewhere. Now Lindsey has to act fast before they throw the book at the wrong person...


Jenn McKinlay's new novel,
Books Can Be Deceiving will strike a cord with readers of all kinds. Set in a small New England town with a librarian as a heroine, this is the first book in the new Library Lover's mystery series. McKinlay is no stranger to the cozy sub-genre as she also writes the Cupcake Bakery Mysteries. Books Can Be Deceiving takes her in a completely different direction that readers will love. Grab a cup of coffee and get ready for a great whodunit!

Lindsey Norris is Briar Creek's newest librarian and she's rearing to go. When Lindsey finds out that a New York editor is vacationing in the area she encourages her friend Beth to submit the children's book she's been writing to him. But, Beth's boyfriend Rick is less than enthused about the project. Being a famous children's book author himself, he tells Beth her work isn't up to New York standards and tries to dissuade her from seeing the editor. Lindsey and Beth go to see the editor despite Rick's best efforts and find out that there is a lot more to the story than they thought. When they go to confront Rick, they find him dead and Beth looks like the prime suspect. It's up to Lindsey to figure out who killed Rick before it's too late.

Jenn McKinlay is well known to most cozy readers from her Cupcake Bakery Mystery series. Her latest series the Library Lover's Mystery series, is a complete departure from her first set of books. I liked the first series a lot, but I was somewhat skeptical with the new one because it was reported to be so different from the first. But, I'm happy to report that I like The Library Lover's series even more than I did McKinlay's other books. Readers generally love libraries, quiet places they can go to read and pick up books they might otherwise not be able to read. I have always loved the library and I think McKinlay does a fantastic job of getting into that frame of mind with this series. It's made for book lovers!

Briar Creek is a typical small town in New England and McKinlay's descriptions of the town, the people and even the food are spot on. Readers will appreciate McKinlay's attention to detail and find themselves wishing they lived in a community like this one. Lindsey is totally someone I'd like to hang out with! I also liked the fact the author was able to convey the overall feeling of New England to readers. There is just something special and unique to the area that is unmistakable and McKinlay captures that essence. I'm still thinking about good a good bowl of clam chowder!

Lindsey is a great character. As an amateur sleuth she comes across as intelligent and intuitive. She is able to pick up on things easily and put two and two together with the best of them. When her friend Beth becomes the prime suspect in her boyfriend, Rick's murder, Lindsey is on the case. I liked the way the author set up the mystery aspect of the book, while still giving the reader a background on Lindsey, her new friends and Briar Creek. I think this was a great first book in a series and there is a lot of potential for more great books. I think McKinlay has created a character in Lindsey that people will identify with, who they will root for and who comes across as authentic and believable.

I recommend this one to cozy mystery fans and for book lovers in general. If you like books, literature and a great story, this one is for you! The book is fast paced, and smooth. The transitions between the main story and back story are flawless and the reader won't feel bogged down with too many details. The mystery aspect of the book is well written and full of surprises. This is certainly one I didn't have figured out until the very end. I look forward to the next installment in the series and learning more about Lindsey and Briar Creek.

Books Can Be Deceiving is available NOW from your favorite bookseller.

I'm giving this one 4 out of 5 apples from my book bag!

The hardest decision Jenn McKinlay ever had to make was what to major in during college. Then she discovered the sanctuary of the library and library science - a major that allowed her to study all the subjects. She loves working as a librarian. After all, what other occupation allows you to research the ethnobotanical properties of agave, perform a puppet show for twenty wiggly toddlers, and try to answer why the rabbit's foot is considered lucky, all in the same day? Jenn is the author of the Cupcake Bakery Mysteries and lives in Scottsdale, Arizona, in a house that is overrun with books, pets, kids, and her husband's guitars.


The publisher has been gracious enough to offer one winner from Debbie's Book Bag the chance to win a copy of Books Can Be Deceiving!

~ You must be a Google Friend Connect follower to participate.
~ US Addresses only (Publisher Request)
~ The deadline to enter this giveaway is Midnight EST July 28th.

1. Please leave a comment on THIS post in appreciation to the author.
2. Please fill out the


holdenj said...

I have adored discovering Jenn's other two series and can't wait to begin a new one. Congrats to her and I wish her continued success!

cyn209 said...

a new cozy mystery series!!!! YAYS for us cozy fans!!!!

good luck & many congrats to Jenn!!!

thank you for the giveaway!!!!


Myra C said...

Sounds like another fun cozy mystery series! Thanks for the giveaway.

Book of Secrets said...

A librarian heroine? I can't resist that! Thank you for the review and giveaway.

lag123 said...

Another new series! And it is about books!!

lag110 at mchsi dot com

Theresa N. said...

I've added it to my listto read.
Theresa N

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the giveaway. I would love to read this book.

Karen B said...

This sounds like a must read cozy series! Yeah for librarians.


DebbieB said...

Sounds like an interesting read. Would love to read it. Thanks for the giveaway.

ChristyJan said...

Sounds like a wonderful cozy mystery series.

Please enter me to win a copy of this book.


In Julie's Opinion said...

I love cozy mysteries and I would love to begin this great sounding series!
jwitt33 at live dot com

Reader Of The Pack said...

I love libraries and cozy mysteries!

Estella said...

I love mysteries set in small towns!

mamabunny13 said...

I love cozy mysteries and I look forward to reading this one!

Ann Summerville said...

This looks like a great read. Thanks for the review.

StephTheBookworm said...

OOOOH this one is actually on my wishlist because I love mysteries and work at a library!!!

Carol M said...

This sounds like a book I would enjoy!
mittens0831 at aol dot com

Carol N Wong said...

I love cozies that have a book theme. Wonderful for a new series, I want to read all of them.


Anita Yancey said...

Loved the review. Sounds like the perfect cozy mystery. I would love to read this one.


Jenn McKinlay said...

Thank you so much for the lovely review! I really appreciate it.