by Cynthia Chow
Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy of Murder in the Reading Room, and a link to purchase it from Amazon, and an indie bookstore where a portion of the sale goes to help support KRL.
Although it seems like a lifetime ago, not much time has passed since Jane Steward learned of her family’s legacy as the guardians of a secret library full of rare and possibly dangerous books. She and her two sons, Hemingway and Fitzgerald, have found a new home and family within Storyton Hall, but this path has also led to threats, murder, and kidnappings. It was after the daring rescue of her sons by the Fins sworn to protect them that Jane also discovered clues that could lead her to her missing lover, Edwin Alcott. Now believing that Edwin is being held in the Biltmore Estate, Jane signed up for their Luxury Lodging Symposium as a way of going undercover and hopefully bring the Templar Knight home.
As the resort manager of Storyton Hall, Jane’s connections grant her access to the convention, while her most loyal Fin, Landon Lachlan, knows a fellow retired Army Ranger on their staff as a gardener. His apparently natural death almost becomes overlooked when Jane is completely stunned by the presence of a man whom she thought was long dead. Not only will this revelation cause upheaval to Jane’s entire family, sinister Biltmore Estate manager Ramsey Parrish is using this to manipulate his way into Storyton Hall. Forced to allow an enemy into her home, Jane still has to host guests such as the BackStory Club, an organization whose love of history have them performing reenactments of World War I battles on the estate. When one of the casualties turns out to be doing more method acting than he may have intended, Jane once again must assess whether protecting the library is worth the costs to the living.
Author Ellery Adams has created a fascinating world and mythology that very thoughtfully confronts the issues of how knowledge and information is controlled. The Guardians of Storyton Hall have always believed that some books are too valuable, and the information within them too explosive for the “normal” population. Jane is slowly growing to believe that libraries should share the books and not hoard them, a philosophy counter to her family’s but one that Jane is willing to embrace. Book lovers will find themselves drawn into her debate as well, although an equally fascinating adventure comes with Parrish’s search for Ernest Hemingway’s missing suitcase and original manuscripts within.
This series delights as more is revealed about the secret societies waging a war over books and libraries, while Jane’s supportive friends and family ground the novel with their humor and practical perspectives. One truly feels the conflict waging within Jane, and the choices she never thought she would ever have to make are moving. A discussion over who controls and disseminates information is more important now than ever before, and when such a timely topic is combined with these relatable and empathetic characters, the results are thrilling.
To enter to win a copy of Murder in the Reading Room, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “reading,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen June 22, 2019. U.S. residents only. If entering via email please include your mailing address (so if you win we can get the book sent right out to you), and if via comment please include your email address. You can read our privacy statement here if you like.
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Use this link to purchase the book & a portion goes to help support KRL & indie bookstore Mysterious Galaxy:
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