Title: Better Off Read
Author: Nora Page
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Publication Date: May 8, 2018
Page Count: 325
My rating: 3 stars
About the book:
When her best hope of saving her storm-damaged library is found murdered, senior librarian Cleo Watkins hits the road in her bookmobile in search of justice.
Septuagenarian librarian Cleo Watkins won’t be shushed when an upstart young mayor threatens to permanently shelve her tiny town’s storm-damaged library. She takes to her bookmobile, Words on Wheels, to collect allies and rally library support throughout Catalpa Springs, Georgia.
However, Cleo soon rolls into trouble. A major benefactor known for his eccentric DIY projects requests all available books on getting away with murder. He’s no Georgia peach, and Cleo wonders if she should worry about his plans. She knows she should when she discovers him bludgeoned and evidence points to her best friend, Mary-Rose Garland.
Sure of Mary-Rose’s innocence, Cleo applies her librarian’s sleuthing skills to the case, assisted by friends, family, and the dapper antiquarian bookseller everyone keeps calling her boyfriend. Evidence stacks up, but a killer is overdue to strike again. With lives and her library on the line, Cleo must shift into high gear to close the book on murder in Better Off Read, the charming Bookmobile series debut by Nora Page.
Better Off Read by Nora Page is the first book in the new cozy Bookmobile Mystery series. The story centers around Cleo Watkins who is a seventy five year old librarian who is willing to do anything to save her library when the mayor threatens closure.
After a storm damaged the main library Cleo took to the streets in her bookmobile, Words on Wheels, to continue her lending habits and find support for her cause. But when a supporter of the library winds up dead Cleo puts her years of mystery reading skills to use to help solve the crime.
Better Off Read is one of those books that on the surface seemed to check all those fun cozy mystery boxes that I love. However, there just seemed to be a bit of something lacking in the story that kept me from becoming totally invested in this one.
Cleo is a fun character that gives a whole new meaning to the spunky elderly with her constant on the go, was that realistic, not necessarily but this is fiction so I did enjoy it. The rest of the characters however weren’t really standing out much to me and the story didn’t really have that wow factor when it came to the conclusion. I think the series has potential to be really fun but this first book was just an alright read for me.
I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley.
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About the author:
Nora Page enjoys rainy weather, the perfect biscuit, and quiet evenings in with her husband and cat. You can often find her in the company of books. This is her first Bookmobile mystery.