The Lies That Bind
Obsidian, Nov 2 2010, $7.99
The Executive Artistic Director of the Bay Area Books Arts Center (BABA), a bitch on wheels; thinks so highly of book binder Brooklyn Wainwright she has her teach a class on the subject and restoring the BABA collection. No one likes Layla Fontaine, who stepped on bodies on her way to the top using lies, intimidation, and cheating as her means to success.
Somebody loathed Layla enough to kill her; no one, not even her niece Naomi, in BABA misses her though Layla brought in millions. Brooklyn wants to find out who killed Layla. With the help of security agent Derek, she investigates. They learn that Layla was the ringleader of a book fraud business and soon find the corpse of Mr. Soo who bought one of the phony tomes. When Brooklyn takes Derek to her hometown of Dhearm; they meet Gabriel a con artist who risked his life to save others. An unknown adversary wounds Gabriel. Brooklyn thinks all the deaths are connected, but Gabriel was not part of the fraud so Derek thinks his shooting is a coincidence. Soon the amateur will prove right, but hopefully not dead right.
The latest Bibliophile mystery (see if Books Could Kill) feels like an amalgam of James Bond and Jessica Fletcher and Brooklyn feels like a murder magnet who feels bound to investigate while the pros who surround her feel a need to protect her but not stifle her. Excitingly action-packed, The Lies that Bind amateur sleuth fans into a fast-paced read.