Friday, April 10, 2020

The Stolen Letter by Paige Shelton

The Stolen Letter (Scottish Bookshop Mystery #5)
Welcome!  I hope you are doing well and managing to keep yourself occupied while at home.  It seems many people are doing puzzles because a number of the puzzles on my Amazon wish list have suddenly sold out.  If you are looking for some escape reading, check out Peril at the Pellicano Hotel by Adriana Licio which releases on April 18  in e-book and available now in paperback.  It is the fourth novel in An Italian Village Mystery series. All three books are available through Kindle Unlimited.
The Old Town Bookshop, Victoria Street, Edinburgh, Scotland
A bookshop in Edinburgh, Scotland
The Stolen Letter by Paige Shelton has Delaney Nichols heading back to work after her honeymoon with her new husband, Tom.  As she heads towards The Cracked Spine, Delaney runs into a woman carrying a large number of books.  After helping retrieve the volumes, Delaney introduces herself to Mary who looks remarkably like her.  Delaney is to learn from Mary Stewart that they both look like Mary, Queen of Scots, and Mary states that she was the Queen of Scots in a past life.  Mary then invites Delaney, Tom and Rosie to dinner that evening.  Rosie has surprising news to share with Delaney once they are alone.  It seems The Cracked Spine has not passed an inspection and the Edinburgh city council will be voting in a week to shut down their beloved bookstore.  The next morning, they hear a BOOM and learn that Henry Stewart, Mary’s husband and a member of the city council, died in a car explosion.  Delaney is astonished when she discovers that Henry was the one pushing for the vote to close The Cracked Spine.  Something does not add up and Delaney intends to get answers so she can save the bookshop.  The Stolen Letter is the fifth novel in A Scottish Bookshop Mystery series.  It can be read alone for those new to this series.  I was eager to read The Stolen Letter when I saw it involved Mary, Queen of Scots.  She is one of my favorite historical figures along with Queen Elizabeth I.  Delaney Nichols enjoyed her honeymoon with her new hubby, Tom Shannon, but she is eager to return to The Cracked Spine.  Delaney loves her job and the people who work there.  When Delaney hears that her beloved bookstore is in jeopardy, she takes action.  Delaney is fierce when it comes to The Cracked Spine.  I felt Edwin should play a bigger role (it is his shop) and I was happy to see that Edwin stepped up when it counted.  Rosie, a shop employee, is a delight.  I liked how she was involved in the investigation.  I enjoyed the author’s word imagery which brings the book to life.  I could envision Edinburgh with its charming shops, cobbled streets and cozy pubs.  The mystery is complex with its suspicious suspects, misdirection and various clues.  I just love a twisty whodunit.  I bet you will be surprised when the solution is revealed.  I found The Stolen Letter to be well-written with genuine, friendly characters.  I could tell the author did her research on Mary, Queen of Scots.  There were some details that were new to me.  It was also interesting to learn about Burgess Tickets and the Freedom Casket they came in.  The ending was wonderful.  It was unique and surprising.  The Stolen Letter is a great addition to A Scottish Bookshop Mystery series.  The Stolen Letter is an entertaining cozy mystery with a perplexing puzzle, an insidious inspection, a remarkable reincarnation, a crafty councilor, lost links, and a determined Delaney.
Mary, Queen of Scots
The Stolen Letter is available from Amazon* along with the other five novels in A Scottish Bookshop Mystery series. The first novel is The Cracked Spine.  Thank you for reading my review.  Tomorrow I am sharing my thoughts on The Lost Orphan by Stacey Halls.    I have provided a little book humor below in the form of a cartoon (we all need an extra dose of humor in our lives right now). I hope that you have a fulfilling day.  Take care, stay safe and Happy Reading!

The Avid Reader 
It's a Mad Mad World
Mary, Queen of Scots, at Prayer
Mary, Queen of Scots
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