Ominously, Norma, a proponent of #vanlife, arrived in a small Rhode Island town accompanied by a murder of crows. The local school even closed for a “crow day” due to the feathery infestation. The townspeople embraced Norma anyway. However, when priceless jewels are stolen from a guest’s room, the inn’s part-time maid, Norma, is the prime suspect.
Penelope, Pen for short, was on her way to the inn to offer Norma a job at her bookstore. She can’t believe Norma would do such a thing! So, Pen and her 1940s noir PI ghost, Jack, investigate the crime. While investigating, Jack realizes he has already been on a case with the same jewels, the famous Tears of Valentino, back in his 40s heyday. He swears the jewels are bad luck to all that hold them.
It’s always a pleasure to hear Jack and Pen’s witty banner. Who knew that a forties dick and a modern bookstore owner would get along so well? Despite being from a notoriously sexist era, Jack is a pure gentleman. His snappy patter, loaded with 40s slang, is so much fun to decipher.
The mystery is challenging due to a school of red herrings making the motive as murky as a country stream. This clever merging of a cozy mystery with classic noir is an entertaining and intriguing way to spend an evening. 5 stars!
Thanks to Berkley, Great Escapes Book Tours and NetGalley for a digital review copy of the book.
About The Ghost and the Stolen Tears
The Ghost and the Stolen Tears (Haunted Bookshop Mystery)
8th in Series
Berkley (October 4, 2022)
Mass Market Paperback : 288 pages
ISBN-10 : 0425255484
ISBN-13 : 978-0425255483
Digital ASIN : B09PZV5F9S
Norma is a modern-day nomad. Living out of her van and teardrop trailer, she revels in self-reliance, solitude, and reading in the glorious peace of nature. Jovial, wise, and scrupulously honest, she’s become an uplifting presence in the little town of Quindicott, Rhode Island, where bookseller Pen is thankful to have her part-time help. But it’s Norma’s other job, working as a housekeeper at the Finch Inn, that gets her into terrible trouble. Norma is accused of stealing jewels from a guest’s room: the legendary Valentino Teardrops, an antique necklace and earring set, inherited by a young socialite. Pen doesn’t believe Norma is guilty of the crime—though the evidence is distressingly strong. And when the spirited Norma vanishes before her arrest, Pen turns to another spirit…
Jack Shepard, PI, may have been gunned down decades ago, but his memory hasn’t been ghosted. Back in the 1940s, those same Valentino Teardrops starred in a bizarre case of betrayal and murder. From the look of things, history is about to repeat. Now Jack is back on the job, and Pen is eternally grateful.
About Cleo Coyle
CLEO COYLE is a pseudonym for Alice Alfonsi, writing in collaboration with her husband, Marc Cerasini. Both are New York Times bestselling authors of the long-running Coffeehouse Mysteries—now celebrating eighteen years in print. They are also authors of the nationally bestselling Haunted Bookshop Mysteries, previously written under the pseudonym Alice Kimberly. Alice has worked as a journalist in Washington, D.C., and New York, and has written popular fiction for adults and children. A former magazine editor, Marc has authored espionage thrillers and nonfiction for adults and children. Alice and Marc are also both bestselling media tie-in writers who have penned properties for Lucasfilm, NBC, Fox, Disney, Imagine, and MGM. They live and work in New York City, where they write independently and together.
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Great review Diane!
I’ve also enjoyed this one and it was a comfortable 5 stars from me as well.
Greetings, Diane — Thank you so much for this wonderful review of our new Haunted Bookshop Mystery. Marc and I are thrilled to know that you enjoyed it and especially happy to know you were charmed by our wisecracking PI ghost Jack. 🙂
Jack has haunted us for quite some time, and we’re always happy when readers are entertained by his company. Thanks again. Happy Halloween to you and happy reading!
~ Cleo Coyle