Summary:Lee is asked to join the library committee but at the first meeting she attends another member of the committee is found dead on the stairs of the library basement. This makes Lee and all the other members suspects.
My rating: 3/5
In truth this book was closer to a 2.5 for me.
The main thing I thought the book did well was the mystery. I did enjoy that even though I figured out who committed murder about halfway through the book. I love libraries and the fact that the murder happened at the library was the main reason I picked up the book. The mystery was a solid 3/5 stars.
I picked this book up without having read any others in the series. This is book 13. It is always hard to say whether a book would be significantly better if I had read others in the series though nothing in this book made me want to run out and grab others in this series.
The first thing that really bothered me about this book was that it felt like there was a lot of information dumping in the beginning. I understand that the writer has to fill in the reader on things that happened in the past 13 books but the way it was done interrupted the flow of the book and honestly was pretty boring and not vital to my understanding of THIS story.
The second thing that really made this book not work for me was the married people in the book lusting after other people. Again, maybe this would make more sense to someone who had read the entire series but it was a huge turn off for me (and made me not like the characters) when Lee is all googly eyed over a hot guy even though she is married. I really had a hard time liking her because of her lust.
The thing that put the nail on the coffin of me not liking Lee and the book was a jab at self published books. I read widely and I know that there are many books both self published and traditionally published that aren’t very good. I am a self publishing author and I work hard to write a good story. I did not at all appreciate the jab that Lee gave self publishers “I checked the title page. Self published. Hmm. I’ll look at it on my way to the trash I thought “(161). The Chocolate Book Bandit was published in 2013 and of course self publishing has made strides forward since then. Still, I thought it was an unnecessary jab at an industry. Lots of traditional published authors have turned to self publishing some of their works. Hope JoAnne Carl never becomes a self pubbing author otherwise she is going to have a bit of egg on her face. This was just a personal pet peeve about the book. Even without this comment I still wouldn’t have enjoyed it very much.