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Back to School Murder by Leslie Meier and Karen White (Narrator)
Being Friends with Dragons by Katherine Locke and Diane Ewen (Illustrations)
Cherish Farrah by Bethany C. Morrow
Clash by Kayla Miller
Crosshairs by Catherine Hernandez
Dead Man's Bones by Susan Wittig Albert
An Eggnog to Die for by Amy Pershing
Else-Marie and Her Seven Little Daddies by Pija Lindenbaum and Gabrielle Charbonnet (translator)
The Ghost and the Bogus Bestseller by Cleo Coyle and Caroline Shaffer (Narrator)
A History of the World in 6 Glasses by Tom Standage
Invisible Kingdom, Volume 3: In Other Worlds by G. Willow Wilson
Keep Your Hands Off Eizouken!, Volume 2 by Sumito Oowara
Komi Can't Communicate, Volume 1 by Tomohito Oda
Lore Olympus: Volume One by Rachel Smythe
Merman in My Tub, Volume 3 by Itokichi
The Mystery of Albert E. Finch by Callie Hutton and Nano Nagle (Narrator)
Oh My Gods! The Forgotten Maze by Stephanie Cooke, Insha Fitzpatrick, and Juliana Moon (Illustrations)
Phantoms by J.A. White
Required Reading for the Disenfranchised Freshman by Kristen R. Lee
The Princess in Black and the Mermaid Princess by Shannon Hale, Dean Hale, and LeUyen Pham (Illustrations)
Savvy Sheldon Feels Good as Hell by Taj McCoy
She's Fleeing a Byronic Hero by Lady Alana Smithee
The Tea Dragon Tapestry by Kay O'Neill
You Truly Assumed by Laila Sabreen

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The Ghost and the Bogus Bestseller: 04/28/22

The Ghost and the Bogus Bestseller

The Ghost and the Bogus Bestseller by Cleo Coyle is the sixth book in the Haunted Bookshop mystery series. It's also the first one attributed to Cleo Coyle instead of Alice Kimberly. Both are nom de plumes for a married couple. The book also marks a decade gap between books. As I only started reading the series a year ago, all the drama that long term fans of the series experienced, I missed.

The store is doing well. There's a new best seller that's selling like hotcakes. Everyone seems to be reading it — a crossover hit for men and women. Pen doesn't think anything about the book's success until a well dressed older woman sees the book, freaks out, and flees the store before paying for the copy she's holding. When Pen goes to find the woman, she stumbles onto the first of a string of murders associated with the book.

Like the previous books, Pen's modern day mystery is eerily similar to a case Jack investigated in his life time. The difference here, is that there's actually a cold case of sorts between Jack's time and the present. This case dates back to the late 1960s, early 1970s.

Ignoring the ghostly PI, the mystery's structure reads like a mixture of Coached in the Act by Victoria Laurie (2021) and Ghostal Living by Kathleen Bridge (2017). This is a mystery that requires the reader keep three timelines separate in their head if they want to solve the mystery before the main character.

As with the previous books in this series, I have been listening to them as audiobooks. Early on Jack had many more first person scenes than he does in more recent volumes. In The Ghost and the Bogus Bestseller, Jack's only first person scene is the prolog. Yet, for reasons that escape me, the man hired to read Jack's prolog is also given the epilog to read. The problem: the epilog is clearly written from Pen's point of view!

The seventh book is The Ghost and the Haunted Portrait (2021).

Five stars

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