Ink and Shadows By Ellery Adams: Review/Giveaway

Feb 20, 2021 | 2021 Articles, Cynthia Chow, Mysteryrat's Maze

by Cynthia Chow

Details at the end of the post on how to enter to win a copy of the book and a link to order it from Amazon and an indie bookstore.

After inadvertently burning her life down in a moment of rage and fury, Nora Pennington found healing and her purpose in the town of Miracle Springs, North Carolina. Renowned for their healing springs, Nora does her own bibliotheraphy there for those needing help in her Miracle Books bookstore. Though her many customers find bliss through the messages they learn through the books Nora selects for them, there is a very loud contingency less than pleased by her new autumn window display. Rather than jumping on the commerce-driven early Halloween bandwagon, Nora and her employees are celebrating diverse women of power and showcasing books such as Practical Magic, Ella Enchanted, Coraline, The Mists of Avalon, Wicked, Matilda, and The House of Spirits. Since historically many outspoken, independent women were branded as witches, maybe it shouldn’t be too surprising that this collection of books has the Women of Lasting Values Society condemning the bookstore in an opinion article in the newspaper and protesting outside the store.

Nora’s Miracle Springs bookstore isn’t the only target of their judgement, as the newest stress and pain management CBD store Soothe has their angel statue vandalized and written threats left outside. While its owner Celeste Leopold seems to perfectly fit into Miracle Springs’ supportive healing community, her abrasive, angry twenty-something daughter rejects all offers of welcome. Nora and her friend June are alarmed to see Bren Leopold sick outside on the street, and after further spurning their attempts to help, they are shocked to later find the young woman dead. The news that Bren had THC and cannabis in her system jeopardizes Soothe’s legal standing, compounding the woman’s trauma and maternal devastation. Rallying the forces of their capable bookclub Secret, Book, and Scone Society, Nora and her fellow storeowners and friends begin investigating whether the attacks on their shops are connected to the death of the rebellious woman.

To paraphrase Ellery Adams from her foreword, those struggling to look for a place in the world can always find it in a book. That is what makes the attacks against Nora’s bookstore and her neighbors so offensive, as they threaten the place where outsiders often find a sense of home. Nora herself is also troubled by her boyfriend Jed’s absence, who, while away taking care of his mother, is himself irritable, vulnerable, and making demands Nora cannot meet. That means that now more than ever Nora will be relying on her Society members, who along with bakery treats and book selections have shared personal secrets that allow one another to share burdens and heal. The healing aspect of Miracle Springs is always central to the plots of this series, and this fourth celebrates the powerful strength of women as well.

A clue from what is possibly an old medieval manuscript brings in a woman from Nora’s past, the former college roommate who reminds Nora of the woman she used to be before the accident, burns, and scarring. What Nora has come to realize is that she likes who she has become, surrounded by loving friends and able to share the healing power of books with those who need it. This is the perfect book for bibliophiles and those looking for a mystery filled with wiccans, alternative therapies, and the incredible bond between the Secret, Book, and Scone Society.

To enter to win a copy of Ink and Shadows, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “shadows,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen February 27, 2021. U.S. residents only and you must be 18 or older to enter. If you are entering via email please include you mailing address in case you win, it will be deleted after the contest. You can read our privacy statement here if you like. BE AWARE THAT IT WILL TAKE LONGER THAN USUAL FOR WINNERS TO GET THEIR BOOKS DUE TO THE CURRENT CRISIS.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. Be sure to check out our new mystery podcast too with mystery short stories, and first chapters read by local actors. A new episode goes up next week.

You can use this link to purchase this book from indie bookstore Mysterious Galaxy, and KRL gets a portion of the sale:

You can use this link to purchase the book on Amazon. If you have ad blocker on you may not see the link:

Cynthia Chow is the branch manager of Kaneohe Public Library on the island of Oahu. She balances a librarian lifestyle of cardigans and hair buns with a passion for motorcycle riding and regrettable tattoos (sorry, Mom).

Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases. KRL also receives free copies of most of the books that it reviews, that are provided in exchange for an honest review of the book.


  1. Sounds interesting! Count me in!

  2. Thanks for the chance! JL_Minter(at)hotmail(dot)com

  3. Always an interesting read with this series.

  4. i really want to read this book

  5. I wish there was a bookstore like this in my area.

  6. LOVE Ellery Adams & this series! Thank you for a chance!
    Enjoyed the article!

  7. Thank you Kings River Life Magazine!

  8. You had me at librarian-turned-bookseller. This one sounds right up my alley. Thanks for the chance to win a copy. crs(at)codedivasites(dot)com

  9. Ellery’s book always deliver.
    this sounds outstanding.

  10. I love this series! Looking forward to reading “Ink and Shadows”.

  11. I would love to win this book!!! Thank you for the chance?

  12. Terrific series. Love how the 4 women become friends through their secrets and use their skills to help each other and to solve crime. Looking forward to reading the newest installment!

  13. This creation sounds so intriguing and interesting.
    I really enjoy this series.
    Thank you for this wonderful opportunity.

  14. Sounds good to me! tWarner419(at)aol(dot)com

  15. Such an intelligent series. Thank you for the chance to win the new entry in the series.
    joni214 at yahoo dot com

  16. This looks like a fun and enjoyable book to read!

  17. Sounds interesting and fun to read. Also intriguing and I really want to read it. Thank you for the chance

  18. We have a winner!


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.