Cover Image: For Whom the Book Tolls

For Whom the Book Tolls

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

For Whom the Book Tolls grabbed my attention from the very start.   Jenna Quinn, who is hoping for a new start in life, accepts an invitation from her uncle to move to Hokes Folly, North Carolina and help run his bookstore.    Since she arrives in the wee morning hours, she picks up the key from their previously arranged spot in order to get into his apartment without waking him up.  

He is not there when she arises later in the morning, so Jenna starts to explore her new living space.  She discovers a flight of stairs that lead into the shop which lead to her uncle’s dead body.  Of course, she is considered a suspect – especially after she learns that she is his only beneficiary to a sizeable inheritance.   Because of her past history, it is essential that she work to clear her name.

Readers meet other interesting characters along the way.  While most are the likeable sort that we expect in a cozy mystery setting, there are some who are intentionally introduced as people many would not care for at all.  It does not take long to discover that more than one person could potentially be the real killer.  

Ms. Black does a good job of setting the stage by providing assorted clues that should lead to making an arrest.  The story is fast paced and kept me turning the pages.   I look forward to the next book in this series so that I can become even better acquainted with the residents of Hokes Folly.

Thank you to NetGalley and Crooked Lane Books for providing me with a free early copy.  A positive review was not required, but I can honestly say that the book is a very promising beginning to a new series.
Was this review helpful?
Jenna goes to visit her Uncle Paul only to be accused of his murder.  She had hoped to rebuild her life but finds that some people won't let go of her past, especially the Detective on the case.  The killer has never let go of the past hurt and it has altered her perception of the present.  Jenna solves this and tries to finalize her plans to stay the new owner of a book store or move on.  Interesting plot and story line. I look forward to the next book.
Was this review helpful?
Having several bad months Jenna headed to her Uncle Pau'ls place to start over.  Tired when she got in she went straight to her room and crashed.
The next morning things got worse than ever.
First, book by new author Laura Gail Black. Enjoyable cozy mystery. Look forward to reading more by this author.
Was this review helpful?
Hopefully someone else will like this book. It wasnt for me. Enjoy the book. But thank you for all you do.
Was this review helpful?
this is a wonderful story  if you like mysteries and some romance you will want to read the book,  i was given a copy of the book by netgalley but this is an honest review.  i could not put the book down,   i did not know who did it till the end
Was this review helpful?
I debated reading this one but the cover won me over. I liked this book more than I thought I would. At the beginning Jenna had a lot of lumps in her throat. But I grew to like Jenna and the old bookstore and the small town of Hokes Folly - I especially enjoyed learning about the history of Hokes Folly. I thought the friendship developed fast between Jenna and her neighbour, Rita, but I can't even complain about that - I really like their friendship and may even be a bit jealous! The writing and the mystery itself were both well done. There were even some funny lines in here. I look forward to reading more in this series!
Was this review helpful?
I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review of the story.

This is a great cozy mystery - suspensful but not stir up your nightmares frightening.

Jenna is determined to start a new life and her uncle's offer of a job and home comes at an opportune time.

But, when Jenna arrives, she finds murder and mystery.

The book explores Jenna's personal growth - is this really where she wants to be at this time of her life? Can she trust the evidence of her uncle's life? Can she call the book store home

I look forward to continuing Jenna's journey.
Was this review helpful?
This was a nice cozy mystery, I enjoyed the characters and the plot kept he guessing and intrigued. Overall a really enjoyable read.
Was this review helpful?
Jenna is trouble with a capital T. She needs to get out of town so when her uncle invites her to stay she quickly takes him up on it. But when she arrives theres no one at the bookstore so she starts to look for him and thete he lies at the bottom of the staircase dead. She is the suspect. I loved this adoreable little mystery. I loved Jenna,  She is a really strong character. I also love the element of surprise when she finds her uncle. The twists and turns are cute. I enjoyed myself reading this mystery.
Was this review helpful?
What a lovely cosy mystery.  So descriptive,  I could picture the white outline where the body had been - nice. Well written and engaging with people who are likeable and people who aren't,  but not necessarily killers.

Really enjoyed it.

Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher I read an advance review copy of the book.  This review is voluntary, honest and my own opinion.
Was this review helpful?
Cute premise. I liked it, and  I think the series has potential. The first entry into the series has some far-fetched moments, and some things I didn't like. The characters were over described or described multiple times. I really was tired of the main character being described physically. I like to know what a character looks like, but I don't need to know more than once. 

Overall, good book, and I'm looking forward to the next one. Plot was good, I did guess the villain early on though.
Was this review helpful?
I love cozy mysteries. They fill a much needed spot for fun light reads especially now during this time of social distancing. But what makes them even better is following along and knowing the characters. A good cozy mystery makes you feel like you are visiting old friends. For Whom the Book Tolls is a great intro to a new cozy mystery series. The characters are interesting. The mystery held my interest and even though I suspected who the killer was it didn't ruin my enjoyment of the story. Because this is the first in the series we need to be introduced to everyone and we don't have that "friendship" built up with them yet. But I can tell that this will be a series that I will be adding to my cozy list. 

3.5 stars
Was this review helpful?
I always love finding the first book in a new cozy mystery series and I was even more excited when I read this one took place at a bookshop. Could there be a better backdrop for a cozy! And Laura Gail Black set up the premise perfectly for Jenna to be able to be an amateur detective when her uncle left her the shop, living quarters above, and a lot of money.
While the town where a cozy takes place is important, as well as whatever hobby or food theme is incorporated, for me, it’s the characters that make the novel. If I don’t enjoy the characters, I won’t be coming back for more. At first I thought I may not be returning to Hokes Folly because Jenna really wasn’t doing much for me, and as the main character, that is a must. And the author does a lot of telling instead of showing, which can get boring after a bit. 
So why will I be reading the next book in An Antique Bookshop Mystery? It’s because of the secondary characters, mainly Mason and Rita. I want to see how Mason grows and I really enjoyed Rita’s warmth. 
As far as the killer goes, Black does include some red herrings. And I didn’t figure out the killer right away, which is always a plus. I will say though, a lot of the cozies I’ve read lately seem to have a trend going on who turns out to be the killer. Which was fine for the first three or four, but I hope cozy writers go back to having a little more substance and motive behind the killings again very soon!
Was this review helpful?
I originally picked this book because I liked the cover. I love small town reads and I love mysteries. This book does not disappoint. It’s a great beginning to a series and I’d like to read the rest. It was a wonderful story and kept me guessing until the end. Highly entertaining!
Was this review helpful?
The debut cozy mystery by Laura Gail Black was an interesting start to a new series. 
I enjoyed the story and while I didn't guess the murderer she also just sort of stumbled upon the answer in the end.
I felt the author had a habit of telling and not showing and some of the characters seems flat and were just there for the strict purpose of needing to "be there". They had no personality.
I still believe it was a good start to the series I just hope she develops the bookshop more and doesn't leave it as a backdrop as I felt it was in this book.
I was given this book as an ARC from the publisher and Net Galley. All opinions are my own.
Was this review helpful?
A great start to a new series. I really enjoyed the small town feel and the kindness of the characters. The story grabbed me from the start and for once I didn’t figure out who did it. I’m looking forward to Jenna’s next adventure.
Was this review helpful?
A strong start to a new series. This has all the makings of a great mystery, a troubled main character, a murder, and the main character is suspect number one. Even though this is a story line we have seen before, the author does a great job keeping the story fresh. I cannot wait to read more in this series.
Was this review helpful?
This was a new series debut.  Jenna Quinn comes from Charlotte just in time for her uncle to be murdered.  She has some recent suspicion under her name as well.  The book follows her through to finding the killer.  The book was alright, but just that, alright.  It was formulaic with more conversation than action.  The characters were more caricatures than really developed, for example the detective was really odious.  There wasn't anything truly special about this series to differeniate it.
Was this review helpful?
I received a free copy of FOR WHOM THE BOOK TOLLS (Book 1 of the Antique Bookshop Mysteries) by Laura Gail Black in exchange for an honest review.  Jenna Quinn is hounded by horrible luck with occasional bright spots.  Tried and acquitted for embezzling and murder in her hometown of Charlotte, Jenna returned home to find that her fiancé had changed the locks and put her belongings into storage.  Forced to seek refuge in a cheap motel, Jenna can only watch her savings dwindle.  However, things look up when Jenna’s uncle invites her to stay with him in Hokes Folly until she’s, once again, financially stable.  The next morning, bad luck pounces again, and Jenna finds her uncle’s body crumpled at the base of a staircase.  Jenna is forced to take her remaining $200.00 to the cheapest lodging available.  Her situation brightens once again when Jenna discovers she’s her uncle’s sole heir, but bad luck pops up again; her uncle was murdered, and Jenna’s criminal history and inheritance place in the spotlight as the primary suspect.  With local law enforcement doing everything it can to stretch the facts into proving Jenna to be a murderer, Jenna decides that she’s done with passivity; she’s no longer going to wait for justice; instead, she’ll find the truth and the killer, too.

I liked this book.  I thought it was a good start to a new series.  I recommend this book to fans of cozy mysteries featuring murder, wrongfully accused, small towns, local lore, bookstores, unexpected inheritance, and conspiracies.

#ForWhomtheBookTolls #NetGalley
Was this review helpful?
law-enforcement, murder-investigation, greed, family-dynamics, friendship

Really good murder mystery with memorable characters.
Jenna has already had a VERY negative experience with being falsely accused and incarcerated, so the last thing she needs is finding the body of someone she loves and who believes in her dead in his home and her being accused of his murder by a police detective wanting brownie points to move up further in the ranks. Her uncle's was the first body, and then there's the scammer apparently looking for something in particular. The suspects kept piling up and then there was the next murder. What treasure?
I loved it!
I requested and received a free ebook copy from Crooked Lane Books via NetGalley. Thank you!
Was this review helpful?