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Once Upon a Spine: 11/28/18
Once Upon a Spine by Kate Carlisle is the eleventh of the Bibliophile mysteries. Derek's parents are visiting from England while rumors abound that the courtyard shops across the street will be closing to make room for more high-end high-rise homes.
Across the street are stores that I can't recall being important to Brooklyn before they are suddenly plot relevant, but they apparently are. There is the cobbler, the bookseller, the Rabbit Hole juice bar and a couple others. Brooklyn, though, discovers the body the juice bar owner buried under a toppled shelving unit.
The heart of the matter is an old copy of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. It might date back to the original run that the author had destroyed because the illustrations had been printed smudged and blurry. As so few of these volumes exist, the ones that do can bring an extraordinary price.
The people in the trendy "Courtyard Shops" are uniformly awful people but they are thematically linked to the book in question. Namely, they are all stand-ins for characters in the Alice stories. This is something that many cozy writers do but one that Carlisle hasn't used much in this series. It was fun to discover that she had done it here and made the otherwise horrible characters fun.
The next book is Buried in Books.