DEADLY EDITIONS, the sixth book in the Scottish Bookshop Mystery series by Paige Shelton, is another terrific addition to one of my favorite series. The reader is treated to the enchanting city of Edinburgh, Scotland as seen through the eyes of American transplant, Delaney Nichols. I especially enjoyed how the plot revolved around pubs in the area and Ms. Shelton’s strong descriptions brings their quaint charm to life on the pages. The narrator does an admirable job in capturing the accent and Scottish words of the characters, which adds to the appeal of the setting. I also think that Delaney has just about the best job in the world working as a bookseller/buyer for the Cracked Spine Bookshop and I would dearly love to spend time in such a place. She’s surrounded by a cast of delightful, well-developed characters who each contribute to the appeal and it’s been a pleasure getting to know them over the course of the series. It’s been gratifying seeing them grow and develop relationships, including a marriage between Delaney and Scottish pub owner, Tom. Delaney also has a unique gift in that she can hear “bookish voices” – quotes from books that provide clues to assist in solving a problem or a mystery. It adds to the focus of books and bookshops, and while I’m not familiar with the quotes used, I appreciate the addition.
In this newest release, the plot revolves around the theme of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, by Robert Louis Stevenson. I loved how the author wove complex intrigue involving this classic dark tale into both an exclusive book treasure hunt and into a long ago unsolved murder and a current day murder. At the center of these crimes is eccentric wealthy Shelaigh O’Connor, owner of a vast book collection. Besotted with Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Shelaigh created a scandal in her teen years by emulating some of the elements of the dark book. When a copycat appears and Shelaigh disappears, many wonder if she’s to blame for the crimes committed. As Delaney hunts for the treasured book and for Shelaigh herself, she uncovers clues to who had reasons to murder Shelaigh’s friend. As the multifaceted threads of the story came together, Ms. Shelton pens a suspenseful reveal that had me on the edge of my seat, turning pages faster and faster. My only regret was not savoring it longer since I’ll have to wait another year for the next book in the series.
I was gifted a copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.