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Murder in the Paperback Parlor

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The New York Times bestselling Book Retreat mysteries feature Storyton Hall, the perfect getaway for literature lovers—except when a guest tries to get away with murder… With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, Jane Steward is organizing a week of activities for fans of love stories at her book-themed resort. But her Regency readers barely have time to brush up on their The New York Times bestselling Book Retreat mysteries feature Storyton Hall, the perfect getaway for literature lovers—except when a guest tries to get away with murder… With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, Jane Steward is organizing a week of activities for fans of love stories at her book-themed resort. But her Regency readers barely have time to brush up on their Jane Austen before tragedy strikes Storyton Hall. Rosamund York, one of the most celebrated authors in attendance, is killed. Rosamund had as many enemies as she did admirers, including envious fellow novelists, a jealous former lover, and dozens of angry fans. It’s up to Jane, with the help of her book club, the Cover Girls, to catalogue the list of suspects and find a heartless killer quickly—before the murderer writes someone else off…


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The New York Times bestselling Book Retreat mysteries feature Storyton Hall, the perfect getaway for literature lovers—except when a guest tries to get away with murder… With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, Jane Steward is organizing a week of activities for fans of love stories at her book-themed resort. But her Regency readers barely have time to brush up on their The New York Times bestselling Book Retreat mysteries feature Storyton Hall, the perfect getaway for literature lovers—except when a guest tries to get away with murder… With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, Jane Steward is organizing a week of activities for fans of love stories at her book-themed resort. But her Regency readers barely have time to brush up on their Jane Austen before tragedy strikes Storyton Hall. Rosamund York, one of the most celebrated authors in attendance, is killed. Rosamund had as many enemies as she did admirers, including envious fellow novelists, a jealous former lover, and dozens of angry fans. It’s up to Jane, with the help of her book club, the Cover Girls, to catalogue the list of suspects and find a heartless killer quickly—before the murderer writes someone else off…

30 review for Murder in the Paperback Parlor

  1. 5 out of 5

    LORI (Dollycas) CASWELL

    Dollycas’s Thoughts I was blown away by the first book in this series, Murder in the Mystery Suite, and this one is even better. We return to Storyton just in time for Romancing the Reader week. The hall is full of lovers of romance novels and Jane has arranged for some special romance authors to attend as well. A full week of activities is planned including a search to find the perfect model for an upcoming romance novel cover, author panels and more. The most well known author is Rosamund York. Dollycas’s Thoughts I was blown away by the first book in this series, Murder in the Mystery Suite, and this one is even better. We return to Storyton just in time for Romancing the Reader week. The hall is full of lovers of romance novels and Jane has arranged for some special romance authors to attend as well. A full week of activities is planned including a search to find the perfect model for an upcoming romance novel cover, author panels and more. The most well known author is Rosamund York. There is a little friction between her and the other authors but Jane never thought anyone would kill her. When her body is found Jane, the new Guardian of the Library, knows she has to move quickly to find the person responsible and save the reputation of Storyton Hall. She enlists the help of the Cover Girls and a few trusted members of the staff to help her target the killer and bring them justice. Storyton Hall is a quite a place. Secret stairways, secrets passages, secret room and most important of all a secret library. It is a book lover’s dream come true. The staff is unique, each person seems to have at least one secret talent. The characters are truly dynamic and escape right into your heart. As with the first book I still cannot choose a favorite. Ellery Adams writes a story that puts you right in the room, looking over Jane Steward’s shoulder, taking in all the mayhem and mystery. There were quite a few suspects and more twists than I could count.The subplots just flow perfectly through the main mystery. This is one of those stories that you want to savor and read slowly so you do not miss a single clue or nuance but once you start reading and the mystery starts to unfold you find the pages are turning faster and faster. When you reach the end you are happy that the mystery is solved but sad that your visit to Storyton has come to an end. Then you realize you have to wait a year to return to a place you have come to love in just a little over 300 pages. Ellery Adams is an extraordinary storyteller!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Aira Karina

    Ellery Adams is one of my autobuy author and this book got me hooked ! It is actually the second book in the series, and i am going to read the first one . Storyton Hall is a magical place , heaven on earth for every book lovers in the world . Jane Steward , the owner of the resort , is trying to plan an event since valentine's day is coming. A week full of activities around romance is prepared at her book themed resort. A famous romance author , Rosamunf York, is invied to the event as the cher Ellery Adams is one of my autobuy author and this book got me hooked ! It is actually the second book in the series, and i am going to read the first one . Storyton Hall is a magical place , heaven on earth for every book lovers in the world . Jane Steward , the owner of the resort , is trying to plan an event since valentine's day is coming. A week full of activities around romance is prepared at her book themed resort. A famous romance author , Rosamunf York, is invied to the event as the cherry on top for all the romance lover. But things got so wrong when Rosamund York is found murdered. Instead of dealing with arranging events , Jane now have to found the killer before she found another dead body. I WANT TO LIVE AT STORYHALL !! a secret library full of the rarest book in the world, who wouldnt want to live there. This book was so great i just keep imaginingnmyself living there. Ellery Adams deserve more than five stars for this book. I just love every sigle thing , the plot , the strong independent female heroine, the setting ( i am a huge sucker for a small town event ). It's a must read for every cozy mystery lovers!!!

  3. 5 out of 5

    beachbum bookworm

    Let me start by saying I rate my cozy mysteries different than all other genres of books I read. I still use a five star rating system (or with cozies I like to think instead of stars how stmany cups of coffee/tea.....which is my idea of cozy). The following is how I rate my cozies: 1 cup of coffee- did not finish or will not continue on in series. 2 cups of coffee- this book has potential, but on the fence about whether I will read the next book. 3 cups of coffee- good- will definitely continue Let me start by saying I rate my cozy mysteries different than all other genres of books I read. I still use a five star rating system (or with cozies I like to think instead of stars how stmany cups of coffee/tea.....which is my idea of cozy). The following is how I rate my cozies: 1 cup of coffee- did not finish or will not continue on in series. 2 cups of coffee- this book has potential, but on the fence about whether I will read the next book. 3 cups of coffee- good- will definitely continue series, but did have some issues 4 cups of coffee- great- will definitely continue series- minor issues 5 cups of coffee-EXCEPTIONAL! What I think about when I give my ratings: 1.) They are called cozies for a reason, and that being said I know they are not for everybody. I love them!! Therefore the first thing I think about is how cozy are they? The more cheese the better for me...lol. The horrible puns in the titles...LOVE THEM. Yes...if you’re wondering... I am the person who loves laffy taffy jokes. 2.) Characters/ and relationships with secondary characters 3.) Setting/theme 4.) The mystery I was so excited to pop in for a visit with Jane and the gang at Storyton hall. Especially because it's valentines day and that means only one....LOVE is in the air! Jane has some amazing festivities planned a fashion show, chocolate making, and of course the male model cover contest. Im so in, but best of all the grand dame (and pain in the hiney diva) of romance authors....Rosamund York is going to be here. She is going to be giving out copies of her highly anticipated new book. Her previous book was amazing! Next thing we know Rosamund is dead...poisoned with one of the amazing chocolate truffles. Jane, myself, and the other keepers of storyton hall start out to do what we always do...band together to keep the secrets of storyton, and the people who we love and care about safe by resolving the murder quickly and quietly. Or so we thought..... ...Remember that LOVE is in the air feeling I mentioned earlier...I mean it is valentines day with a bunch of romance fans...well it goes a little off course (or a lot) when we realize just how many people (suspects) didn't exactly LOVE Rosamund. First her book I mentioned earlier well lets just say that Maria her biggest fan was very upset with the new installment and her, then there is fellow romance author Georgia Dupree who is Rosamunds biggest rival, freelance journalist Nigel, and Taylor her crazy publicist...who is willing to do anything to make this job work. That’s a whole lotta people to keep our eyes on! Along with investigating the murder Jane is getting cozy (see what I did there...lol) with Edmund her best friends brother(which i'm glad she is putting herself out there again after her husband's death), taking care of the twins, her aunt and uncle, being the guardian of storyton, what else could go wrong lol.....A SECOND MURDER..that’s what. Ok.....I loved this book! It was just as good if not better then the first! I think Ellery Adams is an expert at two of the most important parts that make up a good cozy...setting and characters! I love the concept of Storyton Hall (I mean once you set aside disbelief). She develops the setting so well you really feel like you are there...and I mean a place entirely devoted to the love of books...the theme rooms, events, and the secret library!....awesomesauce! The secondary characters of this book also play a big part in making this series great. I love the twins, her aunt and uncle, and I really loved getting to know more about the fins! Adams is awesome at keeping you invested in the story from start to finish! This book is a must read! I have a feeling ill be planning another visit to storyton very soon! check out my blog at: http://beachbumbookworm.com/ Hope everyday is a great reading day!

  4. 4 out of 5

    QNPoohBear

    Jane Steward, manager of Storyton Hall is excited about her upcoming Regency Romance week event for Valentine's Day. She may even find a Regency romance hero of her own if her best friend's brother has anything to say about it. The event brings in many lovers of Regency romance novels hoping to spend time with their favorite author, Rosamond York. Ms. York is a notorious diva who never interacts with her fans but has remained on the best seller lists for years. Her fellow romance authors are jea Jane Steward, manager of Storyton Hall is excited about her upcoming Regency Romance week event for Valentine's Day. She may even find a Regency romance hero of her own if her best friend's brother has anything to say about it. The event brings in many lovers of Regency romance novels hoping to spend time with their favorite author, Rosamond York. Ms. York is a notorious diva who never interacts with her fans but has remained on the best seller lists for years. Her fellow romance authors are jealous and when Ms. York releases an ARC of her latest novel, not all her fans are pleased. Maria Stone, modern feminist, is especially displeased with the misogynistic viewpoint of the novel, but is she mad enough to kill? When Rosamond York is found dead in the garden, Jane knows it's up to her and her family and staff to solve the mystery. Was it the reporter Nigel Poindexter, seen arguing with Rosamund York at lunch? Could it have been a jealous fellow writer or an angry fan? When someone else ends up dead, Jane worries that the murders are diversions and someone is out to threaten her precious top-secret library and she vows to protect it with her life. I was vastly confused right away in this novel not having read the first book in the series. Instead of recapping the cutesy town with the cutesy name, the story jumps right into ... martial arts class?! What pray tell is the heroine doing in martial arts? Apparently she is part of a top secret society protecting a top secret library full of unpublished and super rare literary works. Ok... I'm still confused as to what a Guardian does and why they live double lives and whatever else is going on. Apparently none of this is relevant to the murder mystery until the end of the novel. I was also incredibly disappointed that instead of the Jane Austen fans I was expecting, the Regency romance novels are of the Regency Historical variety (i.e. bodice ripping New York Times Bestseller types). I failed to see how an anachronistic character such as Venus Dares and disgusting alpha hero rakes are appealing to modern women, ESPECIALLY a self-proclaimed feminist like Maria. Eros is worse, I give her that anyway. I want to join the Matildas! The mystery is complicated. I thought I had it figured out but then it seemed like I was wrong. It seemed my guess was a little too obvious but I was right the first time. I also figured out most of the other secrets in the story but one big clue was actually a red herring. I couldn't put the book down until I knew who the murderer actually was. I almost didn't finish the book because it took forever to get there and the plot didn't interest me otherwise. There were some problems in the text of the paperback edition. Heroine means female lead character not the drug. The drug is heroin no e. Damascus IS in Syria but that may be a deliberate mistake. BIG BIG problems with the plot: Rare books pre-1860s were printed on either animal skin or linen paper. The paper doesn't brown with age. That comes later with wood pulp paper. Old books can become water damaged, heat damaged, have foxing (orange/brown spots) if it's a later book, mold, or curl up. I wouldn't have chosen the Gutenburg Bible to get all excited about. I would have chosen another incunable (book printed before 1501 in Europe) or better yet an illuminated manuscript done by monks. Anyway, here is the exact pages of Gutenburg Bible Song of Solomon that appear in the novel. Libraries are about sharing! No library could survive without patrons. Even rare books and special collections go on display or allow researchers to view them. Museums are more about protecting treasures but again they SHARE their collections in a look don't touch way. I think this author has been watching The Librarians on TNT because it sounds like the same thing. I had a hard time keeping track of all the characters. Some are listed in the beginning of the book but not all. I have a love/hate relationship with Storyton. On one hand I like the literary names (except who names their kids Hemingway and Fitzgerald?) but on the other I found Storyton too cutesy. The constant literary references and characters who seem to have read every book ever written got on my nerves. The whole thing was just too over-the-top cutesy for me. Jane is an OK heroine. She claims to have read Pride and Prejudice so often the words are like old friends, yet she can't complete the sentence "To be fond of dancing is the first step ____." While Jane isn't super forthcoming about her feelings, she's a great mom and a decent manager. She deserves happiness after all the tragedy in her life. Her sons, Hem and Fitz, act a lot older than 6- maybe more like 8. Minor spoiler: A 6 year old is too small to ride a ten-speed bike. A 6 year old usually still needs training wheels on a small bike. Minor quibble. I can't remember who any of the other characters are but there is a butler cum martial arts expert and a librarian/self-defense expert and a mysterious recreation coordinator. There's also Jane's best friend Eloise who is a little frivolous but may be good for Jane to help lighten her up a bit. Elosie's brother Edwin is Jane's love interest. He's brooding and mysterious. For some reason, to be revealed towards the end of the book, Jane's family hates him. I didn't trust him at all but found the end very intriguing. The romance writers are largely an awful group. They write stupid anachronistic trash and fans adore them for some reason but are they grateful? No. They want to be the best seller, the most popular - one or two may even have stooped to murder. Rosamund York was the biggest diva of them all and the most annoying. She didn't deserve to die but she did deserve to be haunted by the ghost of Georgette Heyer for destroying the genre Ms. Heyer started. This book just disappointed me and didn't interest me as much as I had hoped.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Paige

    Once again I say when it comes to Ellery Adams books you need more than five stars to do it justice. Last year when I read Murder in the Mystery Suite I felt as if Ellery Adams had created a form of heaven. A resort in the mountains of Virginia that is a real retreat for book lovers. I fell in love with Storyton Hall and all it entails. So when Murder in the Paperback Parlor came out this week I rushed to read it. Ah the joy of another visit to the Book Retreat series. Another chance to spend ti Once again I say when it comes to Ellery Adams books you need more than five stars to do it justice. Last year when I read Murder in the Mystery Suite I felt as if Ellery Adams had created a form of heaven. A resort in the mountains of Virginia that is a real retreat for book lovers. I fell in love with Storyton Hall and all it entails. So when Murder in the Paperback Parlor came out this week I rushed to read it. Ah the joy of another visit to the Book Retreat series. Another chance to spend time there in all the book themed rooms and with other book lovers. Imagine being able to attend a week of events revolving around your favorite genre. In this story Jane Steward builds a week long event for writers and readers of Regency Romances. And than imagine your favorite author is found dead. And so begins this episode of twists and turns that had me stumped . And so with a long list of suspects and questionable characters Jane and her staff set out to find the killer. Along the way we meet up again with all the great characters from Murder in the Mystery Suite. Jane Steward and her twin sons, her elderly aunt and uncle, all the staff and local townspeople that made up the first book in series. A couple of new additions a writer who moves to Storyton and a smart young deputy sheriff Amelia Emory. Like all of Ellery Adams books I could not put it down but also knew that it was going to end and I would have a long wait for the next adventure in Storyton.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Megan

    Ellery Adams seems to be at a bit of a crossroads - she has one of the best current cozy series, Books by the Bay, but she wants more. Like Olivia, her Books by the Bay protagonist, it is clear when her heart is in the story and when it is not. The Book Retreat series should be great fun - a cozy country inn themed around great books and harboring even greater secrets - and at moments, it is - but such a quirky concept needs a degree of lightness and whimsy that the series so far lacks. Too many Ellery Adams seems to be at a bit of a crossroads - she has one of the best current cozy series, Books by the Bay, but she wants more. Like Olivia, her Books by the Bay protagonist, it is clear when her heart is in the story and when it is not. The Book Retreat series should be great fun - a cozy country inn themed around great books and harboring even greater secrets - and at moments, it is - but such a quirky concept needs a degree of lightness and whimsy that the series so far lacks. Too many indistinguishable peripheral characters compete for marginal attention, and the central character, Jane, often seems as generic as her name. The conclusion of this second installment hints at more interesting twists to come in future volumes - I hope the author finds her tone, or takes the series in a direction more in line with her interests - the potential is there!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Ruth

    Yes I know some of the storyline in this series is far-fetched but that's part of what I love about it! I love to imagine I'm visiting Storyton Hall and exploring all the themed rooms and sampling the delicious food whilst reading endless books. In fact, I wish I had a plan of the building as I set off to find the Daphne du Maurier Morning Room and ended up at the Agatha Christie Tea Room. You know how bad my sense of direction is!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Ks Book Reviews

    Book one in the Book Retreat Mystery series, MURDER IN THE MYSTERY SUITE, was one of my favorite books of 2014. Everything I loved about that book has only gotten better in MURDER IN THE PAPERBACK PARLOR. Storyton Hall is a place I would want to visit again and again. A quiet country retreat to spend time with other bibliophiles would be perfect wouldn’t it? But Storyton Hall isn’t all it appears to be. What with pesky murder to contend with. Never fear…the staff of Storyton can handle anything Book one in the Book Retreat Mystery series, MURDER IN THE MYSTERY SUITE, was one of my favorite books of 2014. Everything I loved about that book has only gotten better in MURDER IN THE PAPERBACK PARLOR. Storyton Hall is a place I would want to visit again and again. A quiet country retreat to spend time with other bibliophiles would be perfect wouldn’t it? But Storyton Hall isn’t all it appears to be. What with pesky murder to contend with. Never fear…the staff of Storyton can handle anything that arises, because they aren’t what they appear to be either. You would think with fans of romance descending on the Hall so close to Valentine’s Day, things would be all love and flowers. Come on…this is an Ellery Adams book. Someone has to die!  In this case, it’s a celebrated romance author. Author Ellery Adams lets the reader get a good way into the book before the discovery of the body. I was lulled into the story, taking in the surroundings, enjoying my stay just as much as the characters in the book. I was having a grand time with protagonist Jane, her family, the staff, the Cover Girls…I felt like I was on holiday. With her flawless style of writing and perfect sense of timing, Author Adams had me so absorbed in this fantastic book, I forgot I was reading a murder mystery. So when the death was announced, I was actually shocked. How fun is that? And before I had a chance to get over my shock, mystery, intrigue, and action took over the pages leaving me breathless. Nancy Drew, Miss Marple, and Jane Steward…these are the sleuths I’ll always remember when I think of mystery. You need to read this book! Also included is a sneak peek of book seven in the Ellery Adams Books By The Bay series, WRITING ALL WRONGS.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Kristine (A Cozy Booknook)

    This is fast becoming one of my favorite cozy mystery series! Ellery Adams has transported us to Storyton Hall, a manor house. located in a secluded valley in Virginia. The story is set in modern times but with the imagery painted by Ms. Adams, it evokes a sense of yesteryear. Storyton Hall is a most unique place, it houses a library of thousands of books in all genres; this how the book retreat came to be. It’s almost Valentine’s Day so Storyton Hall has a romance retreat planned for readers of This is fast becoming one of my favorite cozy mystery series! Ellery Adams has transported us to Storyton Hall, a manor house. located in a secluded valley in Virginia. The story is set in modern times but with the imagery painted by Ms. Adams, it evokes a sense of yesteryear. Storyton Hall is a most unique place, it houses a library of thousands of books in all genres; this how the book retreat came to be. It’s almost Valentine’s Day so Storyton Hall has a romance retreat planned for readers of romance. The festivities have barely started when a popular author is murdered. Jane and her book club friends work together to find the culprit before someone else is hurt. I enjoy Ellery Adams writing style, she paints a beautiful portrait with her words. I enjoy her characterizations, and how she bring them to light. The mystery was well laid out, with plenty of twists that kept me guessing. This book was a joy to read! I look forward to reading more in this series and seeing what happens next. I received an advanced copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Book Concierge

    Digital audiobook read by Johanna Parker Number two in the “Book Retreat Mysteries” series set in Storyton Hall, “the perfect getaway for literature lovers.” Well, it’s perfect except when there’s a murder during the romance readers event being held on this weekend. Some Valentine’s Day adventure! This has all the elements of a typical cozy mystery: an amateur sleuth, a “cute” occupation / back story, a little romantic tension, and more suspects than you can shake a stick at. In this case the vict Digital audiobook read by Johanna Parker Number two in the “Book Retreat Mysteries” series set in Storyton Hall, “the perfect getaway for literature lovers.” Well, it’s perfect except when there’s a murder during the romance readers event being held on this weekend. Some Valentine’s Day adventure! This has all the elements of a typical cozy mystery: an amateur sleuth, a “cute” occupation / back story, a little romantic tension, and more suspects than you can shake a stick at. In this case the victim is a world-renowned romance writer, with as many enemies as she has admirers. Among the suspects are fellow writers (jealous of her success), a former lover, and several angry fans. The premise of Storyton Hall, however, lost me a little – most likely because I had not read the first book in the series. In addition to public rooms, there’s a secret library of rare first editions, that only a select few people have access to, and which they are sworn to protect – a sort of secret society of knights / crusaders / protectors. Once I caught on, some aspects made a little more sense, but in general I thought the book was just ‘meh.’ I did love all the references to books, however. I think I’ll go back and read book # 1 before I give final judgment on the series. Johanna Parker does a good job of voicing the audio book, but her performance couldn’t overcome the book’s flaws.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Nidah (SleepDreamWrite)

    When I saw this at my library I was like, wait the next book of this series is already out? Seriously? And so I had started this and another book. Thus I breezed through this, putting aside the other book I was reading. Glad I did because this is a pretty good series so far. I mean how could I not love that bookish setting and its bookish references? The mystery was especially good here, what with the different suspects throughout the murder mystery. There hints of story arcs for some of the char When I saw this at my library I was like, wait the next book of this series is already out? Seriously? And so I had started this and another book. Thus I breezed through this, putting aside the other book I was reading. Glad I did because this is a pretty good series so far. I mean how could I not love that bookish setting and its bookish references? The mystery was especially good here, what with the different suspects throughout the murder mystery. There hints of story arcs for some of the characters, which I’m looking forward to reading in the sequel. So yeah, 5 stars for this because this was just a fun read, making me smile at times, especially near the end. Overall, this is a really good sequel to one of my new favorite series. Now I'm caught up with the author’s other series and now this, I wonder what cozy series I should catch up with next.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Tari

    I just love this series and these characters are amazing. It would be so awesome to have friends like the employees of Storyton Hall. Jane is a great character, very strong especially since she became Guardian of the secret library. This retreat was Regency romance-themed, and Jane expected a very sweet bunch of ladies, not crazed fan girls as she experienced when various items were auctioned for charity. And she certainly wasn't expecting another murder. A side story has Jane falling for one of I just love this series and these characters are amazing. It would be so awesome to have friends like the employees of Storyton Hall. Jane is a great character, very strong especially since she became Guardian of the secret library. This retreat was Regency romance-themed, and Jane expected a very sweet bunch of ladies, not crazed fan girls as she experienced when various items were auctioned for charity. And she certainly wasn't expecting another murder. A side story has Jane falling for one of the handsome men in town who according to her aunt and uncle, has some deep secrets of his own. I had actually guessed the killer, but it was really fun to see how Jane and her employees (aka the Fins who help guard the secret library) set that person up hoping for a confession. Working with the sheriff, the showdown was really great! I love that this series, like the author's other ones, don't simply end when the killer is caught. Life continues past that and all the side stories are wrapped up. I'm hoping to get caught up with this series by the end of the year.

  13. 4 out of 5

    OpenBookSociety.com

    http://openbooksociety.com/article/mu... Brought to you by OBS reviewer Daniele Murder in the Paperback Parlor, the second installment in the Book Retreat Mystery series, is a delight. An idyllic mansion in a quaint village complete with secret passages and books, books, and more books – what could make for a more ideal setting for a cozy murder? Valentine’s week has arrived at Storyton Hall, and manager Jane has a week’s worth of romantic activities planned for the Romancing the Reader Retreat. A http://openbooksociety.com/article/mu... Brought to you by OBS reviewer Daniele Murder in the Paperback Parlor, the second installment in the Book Retreat Mystery series, is a delight. An idyllic mansion in a quaint village complete with secret passages and books, books, and more books – what could make for a more ideal setting for a cozy murder? Valentine’s week has arrived at Storyton Hall, and manager Jane has a week’s worth of romantic activities planned for the Romancing the Reader Retreat. A panel of romance writers, male cover model contest, ball, fashion show, and auction are just a portion of the itinerary. Rosamund York is the headliner for the event, and from the moment of the elusive author’s arrival, tension rises. Her assistant does not want to abide by the resort rules, another author is dreadfully jealous of her, and her fans just might turn against her after they read the advance copies of her new book which is a bid departure from her usual offerings. When the phone rings in the wee hours, Jane knows it cannot be good news, and sure enough, Rosamund has been found lifeless in the garden. Keeping her death a secret is not possible, and the retreat goes on as scheduled in honor of her memory. Only now, instead of playing cupid, Jane must put on her investigative hat. The more Jane digs the more dirt she finds about the ever private author and that she had as many enemies as she did secrets. Georgia Dupree is Rosamund’s chief rival and is almost gleeful upon hearing about her demise. Rosamund was seen arguing with a journalist, Nigel, who is there to write freelance work. Rosamund’s “biggest” fan Maria Stone makes an about face, feeling Rosamund betrayed the cause of women in her latest contemporary romance. As Rosamund’s assistant, Taylor Birch had access to all aspects of her life. Then there are all of the other retreat attendees to consider. As if the murder was not enough to keep Jane busy, she must continue to work with the Fins, a group dedicated to protecting the secret treasures hidden in Storyton Hall, as the priceless collection’s new Guardian, care for her precocious twins Fitz and Hem, and keep her own romantic feelings for her best friend’s brother in check. What embers she hoped to fuel into the flame of love for Edwin are dowsed by her family and the Fins when they tell her Edwin’s true identity. Though Murder in the Paperback Parlor did not exactly end with a cliff hanger, it did leave me wanting to know more. Jane is a strong and appealing character and Edwin is proving to be quite the man of mystery, but it is the Fins that I find so captivating. A group of older men for the most part, who would think that the main librarian would know how to throw a roundhouse kick or that the chauffeur has a secret laboratory. I love all of these guardians. Uncle Aloysius is endearing, but Aunt Octavia is a bit tedious at times. The mystery itself is well paced with realistic suspects and motives. I did guess whodunit fairly early into the story, but there were enough twists and turns to make me second guess myself at times. Ellery Adams spins a fine tale full of jealously, love, greed, aspirations, and poison. I absolutely loved Murder in the Paperback Parlor and cannot wait to read the next installment. Highly recommended. *OBS would like to thank the publisher for supplying a free copy of this title in exchange for an honest review*

  14. 5 out of 5

    Doward Wilson

    Betrayals, lies, greed, ambition, blackmail and love are all mixed into this story. Storyton Hall is a resort filled with thousands of books. Jane Steward, her aunt and uncle own and run it. Being a resort for all things doing with books, Jane has booked a convention for Regency romance writers and their fans over Valentine's Day. Rosamund York is the leading writer to attend and a diva of unbelievable proportions. Things get out of hand and Rosamund is found dead by poisoning. To save the resor Betrayals, lies, greed, ambition, blackmail and love are all mixed into this story. Storyton Hall is a resort filled with thousands of books. Jane Steward, her aunt and uncle own and run it. Being a resort for all things doing with books, Jane has booked a convention for Regency romance writers and their fans over Valentine's Day. Rosamund York is the leading writer to attend and a diva of unbelievable proportions. Things get out of hand and Rosamund is found dead by poisoning. To save the resort's reputation, Jane and her friends work to solve the murder. Storyton Hall and Jane's family have their own secrets to hide, as do many of their suspects. This second book in the series continues to enthrall and entertain while presenting a complex and twisted murder plot that will keep your attention to the end. The setting, background and characters are well developed and complex. You feel like you are there, with people you know and live with. The Steward family's secret is a great foundation for the all of the action in this series. I highly recommend that you grab the first book and read them back to back and then we have to wait for the next one, which can't come soon enough. A MUST READ FOR BOOK AND COZY MURDER READERS!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Juanita

    I didn't enjoy the second book in this series as much as the first. It dragged a bit for me, took me a while to get through. With the Cover Girls (Jane's book club gals), and the staff at the inn, there's a lot of characters to keep track of, possibly too many, as I kept mixing up the Cover Girls. There's a bit of drama with Jane's love interest, Edwin, as she discovers (view spoiler)[he's actually a book thief. The ending is a bit of a cliffhanger though, as he seems to maybe be on the side of I didn't enjoy the second book in this series as much as the first. It dragged a bit for me, took me a while to get through. With the Cover Girls (Jane's book club gals), and the staff at the inn, there's a lot of characters to keep track of, possibly too many, as I kept mixing up the Cover Girls. There's a bit of drama with Jane's love interest, Edwin, as she discovers (view spoiler)[he's actually a book thief. The ending is a bit of a cliffhanger though, as he seems to maybe be on the side of good. The mystery itself was decent. The inn is hosting a Romance the Readers event this time around, and there are four fairly big authors in attendance, though none as big as the headliner, Rosamund York. She's the one who dies first, and once we learn her books are actually penned by her former college professor, Nigel Poindexter, he dies too. The murderer is York's assistant, Taylor, a young girl who is desperate to break into the publishing business and feels betrayed when she learns York is a fake, and sees the opportunity to take over York's work (hide spoiler)] . Jane bored me a bit this book, but I'm not sure why. I'll probably give the third one a chance to see if I enjoy it more.

  16. 5 out of 5

    April Schilling

    I received an early copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. This is the second book in the Book Retreat Mystery series. I loved it! The characters and setting are great, I absolutely love Storyton Hall! It is filled with secret passageways, a garden, and a library I would love to have. I would love to visit the town of Storyton, it seems like such a neat place to visit. It's Valentine's Day and Jane has wonderful things planned. Romance writers are coming to Storyton, I received an early copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. This is the second book in the Book Retreat Mystery series. I loved it! The characters and setting are great, I absolutely love Storyton Hall! It is filled with secret passageways, a garden, and a library I would love to have. I would love to visit the town of Storyton, it seems like such a neat place to visit. It's Valentine's Day and Jane has wonderful things planned. Romance writers are coming to Storyton, along with their fans for a wonderful week long retreat. What could go wrong? Unfortunately, one of the writers is murdered and Jane feels that she should investigate. But who of the writers many enemies could have done it? And are any of the other guests in danger? Is Storyton Hall in danger? I really enjoyed both books in this series and if you haven't tried it yet, you really should! It's such a fun series to read and I can't wait for the next book!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jonathan

    Excellent. I'm excited for the next one!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Charmaine

    I went right from the first book of this series into this one - which I think is a good idea because much of the main characters' story line picks right back up in this second novel. What I especially enjoy about this series are all the literary references as well as the on-going development of the characters and their connections one to another. The setting of Storyton Hall is delightful and there are enough plot twists and turns to keep one interested. As with any cozy mystery, there are times I went right from the first book of this series into this one - which I think is a good idea because much of the main characters' story line picks right back up in this second novel. What I especially enjoy about this series are all the literary references as well as the on-going development of the characters and their connections one to another. The setting of Storyton Hall is delightful and there are enough plot twists and turns to keep one interested. As with any cozy mystery, there are times in the story when you have to roll your eyes a bit (as you ask yourself "could this REALLY happen?!?"). But that's part of the pleasure of a literary escape. It's NOT reality! Clean Readers: the language is completely clean. The only thing that makes this series PG rated are some mild sexual innuendos. One of the female characters, in particular, is a little too focus on sex.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Teri

    Would definitely recommend reading in order, I could not get the first from my library so I just skipped it, but I felt like I was missing things. I did like this. Cozy mysteries are definitely different and you have to let certain things go, and once I did , I enjoyed it. Will read more from this author.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    This second book in this series is just as good as the first book. And who would ever think there would be a murder during a Romance Writers of America event? Guess someone won't be getting their happily ever after.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Bree Hill

    I really enjoyed book one in the series but WHOA book two was amazing!!

  22. 5 out of 5

    Micky Cox

    The first book in the series was good, but this one is even better! I am loving the characters and the detail that the author puts into each of their personalities is fantastic. The plot is well constructed and woven quite well. In this one, the villain was more obvious to me, but that did not detract from the plot one bit. In fact I think my knowing enhanced the mystery and the struggle to untwist it even more. The personal stories of the characters flows quite nicely throughout the story witho The first book in the series was good, but this one is even better! I am loving the characters and the detail that the author puts into each of their personalities is fantastic. The plot is well constructed and woven quite well. In this one, the villain was more obvious to me, but that did not detract from the plot one bit. In fact I think my knowing enhanced the mystery and the struggle to untwist it even more. The personal stories of the characters flows quite nicely throughout the story without overtaking the mystery, but keeping you turning pages to find out how things turn out. An even better bonus is that so far the series has been available on audiobook so I can listen and drive so the enjoyment is ongoing!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Carrie Templeton

    I can’t get enough of this delicious literary series! I need physical copies to capture all of the amazing quotes ❤️

  24. 4 out of 5

    Nancy Bradford

    Another great book by Ms. Adams.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Becky

    Ellery Adams has a of making her books unique and charming. That's excited what this book was. Along with a few magical moments.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    I just love this series and as always looking forward to more. The narrator is just perfect for this series.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Iverson

    Storyton Hall is an enchanting place that I find myself swept into. The storyline sweeps me away into a fully different world. The relationships of the characters make me smile. The ending is surprising. This series is one that I can't wait for the next book! I love it!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Tina

    I had a dream the night after I read Murder in the Paperback Parlor, I dreamt that I was exploring the hidden passageways inside Storyton Hall. I was searching for the hidden library of books and I didn't want to wake up until I found it. You know your a bibliophile when you start dreaming about books you read, because as anyone close to me will tell you I am obsessed with books. Valentines Day is fast approaching and Storyton Hall is getting ready for the Romancing the Reader retreat where many I had a dream the night after I read Murder in the Paperback Parlor, I dreamt that I was exploring the hidden passageways inside Storyton Hall. I was searching for the hidden library of books and I didn't want to wake up until I found it. You know your a bibliophile when you start dreaming about books you read, because as anyone close to me will tell you I am obsessed with books. Valentines Day is fast approaching and Storyton Hall is getting ready for the Romancing the Reader retreat where many fans of romance novels and their authors will attend, excitment is at a fever pitch. Famous best selling romance author, Rosamund York is going to be in residence, there will be a chocolate truffle making and tasting, a male book cover model contest, a auction and a fashion show for ladies to display the fashions of the times. When Rosamund's Advanced Reader Copy of her new book is passed out among the attendees, it is not met with rave reviews, and anger and frustration is felt among some of the Romancing the Reader guests especially Rosamund's biggest fan after she reads the book, and another author is jealous of Rosamund's success also with her assistant feeling like a glorified servant. When Jane, the Storyton Hall manager gets a call in the dead of night telling her that Rosemund has been found dead in the garden. It is now up to Jane being the guardian of Storyton hall and the protector of the secret libary along with the police to investigate who could have wanted the bestselling romance author dead, there's "Nigel" a freelance journalist and him and Rosamund have secrets to hide ,and her biggest fan, Maria Stone being angry and frantic about the new book not wanting it to be released and then there's the overworked assistant, Taylor Birch and the competing jealous rival author the other attendees that could after reading her new book want her dead. So together with the Fins, a group put together to protect the secret library of Storyton Hall and being a guardian, Jane took a vow to protect Storyton Hall and has a tattoo to prove it. With also taking care of her twin boys and with a blooming romance with her bestfriend's brother but Jane must put thoughts of romance on hold when Storyton Hall becomes jeopradized when Edwin her bestfriend's brother is revealed that he is not who he claims he is and too Jane nothing is more important than finding a murderer of now two people when Nigel the freelance journalist is also found murdered in the Paperback Parlor. This is only the second book in the Book Retreat Mysteries but it's already a powerful one with unforgetable and dynamic characters like Aunt Octavia and Uncle Aloysius with Jane being a force to be reckoned with when it comes to her life and her job and she makes you anitsipate the next book in the series. Mysteries about books, authors, assistants, and writers are some of my most favorites and if they are yours too you will not be disappointed. Ellery Adams is a powerful writer and her words captivate you to keep turning page after page, a story of murder, jealousy, books and romance is what you have in store when you pick up Murder in the Paperback Parlor. FTC Disclosure: Thank you to the publisher and/or author for the giveaway for providing me with a copy of this book for review.This did not influence our thoughts in any way. All the opinions of the book and review are our own and our reviews are honest.

  29. 5 out of 5

    TheGeekyBlogger

    Listened for Review (Tantor) Overall Rating: 3.75 Story Rating: 4.00 Character Rating: 3.50 Audio Rating: 4.50 (not part of the overall rating) First Thought when Finished: Murder in the Paperback Parlor by Ellery Adams was a delightful read with some pretty great twists! Overall Thoughts: I read as much romance as I do mysteries so I picked up Murder in the Paperback Parlor without reading the first book in the series (I do have a hold on it at my library) because of the romance retreat setting. I wa Listened for Review (Tantor) Overall Rating: 3.75 Story Rating: 4.00 Character Rating: 3.50 Audio Rating: 4.50 (not part of the overall rating) First Thought when Finished: Murder in the Paperback Parlor by Ellery Adams was a delightful read with some pretty great twists! Overall Thoughts: I read as much romance as I do mysteries so I picked up Murder in the Paperback Parlor without reading the first book in the series (I do have a hold on it at my library) because of the romance retreat setting. I was not disappointed, Ellery really did a great job of capturing the fun, craziness, and fandom that does exist in the romance world. Though I am hoping the Historical Romance Retreat next year doesn't have as many deaths LOL. I am fan of Ellery Adams storytelling and this series is just the type of tale I expect her to tell. The only thing this was missing was I wanted a little more "oomph" or "fun" from the characters. They were intriguing. I liked them. I just wanted more. The case was solid though and that ending makes me think that Book 3 will have just what I am looking for :) Audio Thoughts: Narrated By Johanna Parker /8 hrs and 59 mins Johanna is one of my favorite narrators. I have listened to her do romance, cozy mysteries, and urban fantasy. She has never disappointed me. She has really great pacing, style, and quirk. Check out something she narrates and I don't think your will be disappointed. Part of my Read It, Rate It, File It, DONE! Reviews

  30. 4 out of 5

    Jill Tool

    This is the second book in The Book Retreat Mysteries. This book grabs you before you’re halfway through with the first chapter. The same main characters are back at Storyton Hall for a week of Romance Readers during Valentine’s Day. One of the things I enjoy about this series is that it adds to my TBR list, with many references to many books and character. Ellery Adams has a very gift of telling a story all the while keeping the reader engaged, and entertained. The mystery is great but don’t th This is the second book in The Book Retreat Mysteries. This book grabs you before you’re halfway through with the first chapter. The same main characters are back at Storyton Hall for a week of Romance Readers during Valentine’s Day. One of the things I enjoy about this series is that it adds to my TBR list, with many references to many books and character. Ellery Adams has a very gift of telling a story all the while keeping the reader engaged, and entertained. The mystery is great but don’t think you have it figured out because Ms. Adams has twist and turns that will keep you guessing, changing your mind, and most of the time, will prove you wrong. Jane is a single mother to twins Finn and Hem, she helps her Aunt and Uncle run Storyton Hall, a little retreat for people to come and relax, and is also the guardian of Storyton Hall. She also coordinate’s theme retreats, for guest that usually has to do with books. Although murder is never planned for these retreats and usually throws a wrench into her itinerary. While trying to save the retreats and with the Fins that are to protect the library, she helps the local sheriff solve the murders of her guests. This is a delightful series. The description of Storyton Hall and the events makes me want to go to one of these retreats in person.

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