Cover Image: A Deadly Chapter

A Deadly Chapter

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

I really enjoyed this one. It was a quick and easy read and kept me guessing. If definitely pick up another book by this author
Was this review helpful?
I'm finding this series really fun and interesting. This was a good, fun read, with lots of twists and turns. Ending was a surprise!
Was this review helpful?
This is a fairly fun and engaging mystery that picks up where the previous 2 books left off. I enjoyed the setting and the new twists and turns in the protagonist’s character development. There were a few interesting dynamics but some felt forced- why does the victim’s daughter immediately trust Shelby and assume she’s the right person to investigate as opposed to the police? Etc. Ultimately though, I found the dialogue a bit stilted and the plot was not quite propulsive enough to do the heavy lifting here. It’s a cute cozy mystery but ultimately felt more forgettable than captivating for me. While you can read this as a standalone, the multiple references to previous murders and life events for Shelby do not fit as nicely into the narrative if this is the first book you pick up in the series.

Thank you NetGalley and Essie Lane for the ARC in exchange for an unbiased review. I will continue to read this author!
Was this review helpful?
This series has by far one of the best settings of all cozies. You can't beat a bookstore in a castle on a island. I probably would have read this book just for the setting, but the mystery is always wonderful. Shelby has a lot going on in this book with her love life which has as many twists and turns as the mystery. This book was great and I highly recommend it
Was this review helpful?
This was my first book by this author and I really enjoyed it! I love a good cozy mystery, and this one was great. We open up to a body being found in the water near Shelby’s boat. From there it turns into a fun mystery as to what happened. If you love cozy mysteries, I recommend checking this one out!
Was this review helpful?
The story is about an amateur sleuth who finds a dead body in the water at the side of her house boat.  Even though she is advised by the local police woman not to meddle in the investigation. Shelby can't help herself but to start asking questions about the person and who he was looking for in the small village where she lives.   The story also gives a further story of sleuth, her family and friends.  Very enjoyable book.
Was this review helpful?
A Deadly Chapter is the third instalment in the 'Castle Bookshop Mystery' series. I have read all three books and I absolutely adore this series! It has an amazing setting - a bookshop in a castle, no less, and an eye-catching, colourful front cover.
There aren’t many settings as perfect as a bookshop located within a castle, and Essie Lang made great use of this. Blye Castle is in a fine lakeside town, with a real sense of community and a general feeling of nostalgia. This, as well as a town full of secrets, made it a brilliant backdrop for a murder investigation.
A Deadly Chapter sees the return of protagonist Shelby Cox, who has the necessary attributes of any great sleuth - intelligence, curiosity and attention to detail. Also making a reappearance, much to my delight, is Shelby’s endearing, plucky and strong-willed Aunt Edie, of whom I am especially fond.
In this instalment, Shelby sleeps late after a couple of wines the night before. She's in rush to get to the bookshop at Alexandria Bay but whilst deciding what jumper to wear before she sets off from her rented houseboat, she hears an unusual noise. When she goes onto the upper back deck of the boat, she discovers a body, facedown in the water, jammed between the dock and the boat, the head caved in. She calls the police and waits for Chief Tekla Stone who eventually identifies the victim. The man, Nathan Miller, who kept an eagle feather in his pocket, had visited the bookshops at both the Blye Castle store and the store at Alexandria Bay, New York state enquiring about a woman who used to live nearby. Shelby begins to investigate with the victim's daughter much to the dismay of the police chief.
This book has many of the components that make a really good story: from the mood and undercurrents to the very clever writing. The details of the plot were brilliantly executed and every chapter left me with a compelling need to read on. The end is perfectly satisfactory, with all loose ends neatly tied up. I highly recommend A Deadly Chapter to those who appreciate well-written cozy mysteries. This is a series I really enjoy, and I very much look forward to my next outing with Shelby and Aunt Edie!
I received a complimentary copy of this novel at my request from Crooked Lane Books via NetGalley and this review is my own unbiased opinion.
Was this review helpful?
Title:  A Deadly Chapter
Author:  Essie Lang

Ch: 34

Pg:  320

Series: A Castle Bookshop mystery book 3

Genre:  Cozy Mystery 

Rating: 4 stars

Publisher: Crooked


A Deadly Chapter by Essie Lang is the third book in the A Castle Bookshop mystery series. Shelby has settled in as a bookseller in the small coastal New York town. That is if she can stop finding bodies. I have to say that this one is my favorite in the series so far because since we’ve established the setting and characters the book focuses more on the mystery and I enjoyed this one.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher through netgalley. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.
Was this review helpful?
Why do I keep doing this? Why do I keep coming into series mid-way at best. But..
A Deadly Chapter reads pretty easy even though it is third adventures in the lives of Shelby Cox and her friends and relatives.
Shelby Cox finds a body stuck next to her houseboat... and is trying her best (almost) not to interfere with the police investigation into this body and how it ended up in the water. But Shelby can't help herself.
However, A Deadly Chapter is as much about Shelby, the bookstore she runs, her relationships with other people on the tiny island, her pain and loss at losing her parents and then finding her mum alive and well... as it is about the murder.
I enjoyed Shelby and Co. I enjoyed the setting immensely. I even googled Thousand Islands to see what it is all about. I loved the peaceful, slow flow of the narration, character relationships and developments. I believe Shelby has a devoted following she deserves.
Was this review helpful?
A Deadly Chapter is the third book in the Castle Bookshop Mystery series by Essie Lang. I do suggest reading this series in order for character development and underlying storylines. However, the mystery itself can stand alone.

Bookseller Shelby Cox has already sleuthed two murders from Bayside Books's home base on Blye Island, one of New York State's famed Thousand Islands. And this time, mayhem knocks right on Shelby's waterside door when she finds a body lodged between the side of her houseboat and the dock, his skull shattered. The victim is no local, but Shelby can't shake the feeling she's seen him before. Twice, in fact--that's how many times he's dropped into Bayside Books asking about an enigmatic woman who lived on Blye Island many years before. The last time? The day before he was found. But the poor man obviously was killed elsewhere, so who brought him down to the bay, and why? When the victim's daughter hits town demanding answers, Shelby takes the case, despite Police Chief Tekla Stone's usual reservations. But she uncovers more suspects than there are pages in War and Peace, and Shelby can expect no peace--except the peace of the grave--unless she can turn the page on this grisly mystery. 

A Deadly Chapter is an interesting continuation of the series. I liked the mystery elements. Shelby and her sleuthing was interesting to read and follow- and while she does make some slightly foolish decisions that could put her in danger, those decisions are getting better. She is becoming more aware of the consequences of her actions and making smart choices.I thought the new characters that were brought in for the mystery were well written, with interesting personalities and issues.  I thought the mystery was well built up, with multiple layers and things going on. However, I felt like there got to be too much happening. Shelby's personal crisis's and the multi layered mystery ended up leaving me with some parts that were well resolved and leaving me satisfied but other aspects that either were swept under the carpet, solved to easily, or just forgotten about completely. I did enjoy the read, but was left wondering about a few too many threads that were woven into the story and then dropped. I think fans of the series will be interested in reading this one, to see what is happening with these characters and the small town, but I think this might be where I bow out of the series.

A Deadly Chapter is a good mystery with some interesting character development.
Was this review helpful?
Shelby Cox, bookseller and town newbie didn't have to go far to find a body this time, right outside her "door" and of course she is going to be curious since the victim was in her shop just a few days before looking for someone. Feeling as if she needs to get to the bottom of this mystery, after all, the victims distraught daughter is in town demanding answers and the list of suspects seems to be growing, Shelby is well on her way to irritating the local law. In addition to worrying Sheriff Stone and Aunt Edie, Shelby's boyfriend/Coast Guard investigator, Zack, who is working out of town on a secondment, begs her to be careful. You cannot help but be caught up in the sleuthing path that Shelby takes us on or agreeing with the need to ask questions. After all, this isn't her first time around murder or mystery, it is the first time it has been "dropped" almost right on her door/boat step. Shelby is completely relatable and you can't help but like her new BFF, Erica, owner of the shop Chocomania which sells the best truffles! I really wish that Erica would share a recipe or two! I was a little worried up until the end but am happy to see that it all worked out. Looking forward to the next Castle Bookshop Mystery. And I am quite serious about those truffle recipes!
Was this review helpful?
A Deadly Chapter: A Castle Bookshop Mystery by Essie Lang
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Genre: Mystery & Thrillers
Release Date: March 9, 2021

A Deadly Chapter is the third book in A Castle Bookshop Mystery series by Essie Lang. I had not read the previous books, but was easily able to read this as a standalone book.

This book was very enjoyable. The mystery was great, with lots of twists and turns. The characters were awesome, plus who doesn't want to live on a houseboat! There was a lot going on in the storyline and I enjoyed the different dimensions of each character and their interactions!

Overall, I enjoyed reading this book and look forward to reading the other books in the series.

I'm so grateful to Essie Lang, Crooked Lane Books, and NetGalley for providing me with a free copy of this ARC ebook in exchange for my honest review.
Was this review helpful?
Shelby has to solve another Castle Bookshop mystery after she discovers a body floating by her houseboat. The Deadly Chapter is a great cozy with many suspects and a satisfying read.
Was this review helpful?
Shelby Cox isn’t sure what woke her, but she’s glad something did because she’s going to be late opening Bayside Books. Stepping out onto the upper deck of her houseboat to check the weather, Shelby hears a thunk. Investigating the noise, she finds a body of floating in the water. Her houseboat now a crime scene, Shelby is forced to her aunt’s house for breakfast and a change of clothes since pajamas aren’t appropriate retail wear.
At the store, the police chief shows Shelby a picture of a man’s body. Shelby recognizes him. He has visited the bookstore twice, once in the fall and the day before his body is found. Shelby doesn’t know his name. What she does know is the unknown man was looking for a woman who had moved to the area seven years ago. Shelby feels she owes the man something since she had talked to him twice and found his body.  Shelby inserts herself into the investigation. As Shelby draws closer to the truth, she puts herself in the killer’s path. Will she solve the mystery or become another body in the bay?
Was this review helpful?
A Deadly Chapter is the third Castle Bookshop Mystery, but the first one that I've read. This didn't keep me from thoroughly enjoying the books and being able to jump right into the storyline. Shelby Cox runs a book store on the tourist spot of Blye Island, one of New York state's thousand islands. (I had to Google to see that this was a real place. I consider myself well traveled and well versed in geography but somehow I've never heard of these islands). 

This book has all the charming elements to a cozy mystery. An enviable and picturesque location, an even more enviable living abode (Shelby lives on a houseboat), a cast of colorful characters, and crime that is not too gory or hard boiled. Right at the beginning of the book Shelby finds a dead man knocking against the side of her boat, and when the police fish him out of the water, she realizes she has met him before. He came into her bookshop twice, inquiring if she knew of a woman that had moved to the island seven years before. Shelby already has two solved murders under her belt, and she just can't leave this mystery alone.

I enjoyed meeting the characters that inhabit the Bayside Bookstore, and I was in the mood for a mystery where the characters weren't totally evil and depraved. The setting of the book was very enticing, and I am interested in going back and reading the first two mysteries in the series. Thank you to NetGalley, and the author and publisher of A Deadly Chapter for allowing me to preview this ARC.
Was this review helpful?
I want to say thank you to netgalley and Crooked Lane Books for my gifted copy for review, unfortunately this one just did not work for me.  I thought the premise sounded cute, a woman living on a houseboat in a small town and she works in a bookstore.  Shelby wakes up one morning and there is a man dead hitting the side of her boat and an investigation ensues.  I am learning about my reading tastes that I find I do not really enjoy when average people can solve mysteries when the local police can not.  Another problem I had with this one was the writing style, for whatever reason I found it to be a bit choppy and didn't flow well.  I think there are readers out there who will enjoy this one, it just didn't work for me.
Was this review helpful?
I received this book from the publisher through Netgalley for review and all thoughts and opinions are my own.
This is a cozy mystery, third in series by Canadian award winning author. It has all the lovely cozy elements expected of the genre. A visitor to this small island town is murdered after asking after a woman who came to live there seven years previously. Our protagonist owns the local bookstore and has a nose for investigation which places her in deep trouble, and often. Quick cozy and won't disappoint. I enjoyed it and liked the characters.
Was this review helpful?
This is the second book I've read in this series.  I missed the first book, which put me a little behind on the second book, but the author has caught me up and I know who's who now.

I enjoyed this book on several levels.  First of all, the characters are becoming more alive for me.  I love Edie.  She is full of heart and loves Shelby like a daughter.  Shelby discovers her mother in this book.  She has mixed feelings considering all that happened in her childhood.  I also loved the story and the fact she lives on a houseboat is interesting to me.  The Castle and the bookstore play roles in this book as well.

All in all, I thought this book was great!  I hope to read the next in the series!  Thank you to NetGalley and Crooked Lane Books for the opportunity to read and review this book!
Was this review helpful?
The title of the book attracted me on first sight, because who doesn't love mysteries surrounding a bookstore, right? 🙈💚 

A Deadly Chapter started off slowly, but turned out to be an interesting read after the first few chapters passed by. I haven't read the first two books of the series, so I wasn't really familiar with Shelby's reputation as a sleuth. 😅 I loved her character though. The plot was very intriguing and I couldn't stop turning the pages on my kindle as fast as I could to know what happened next in the story. The ending was unexpected, and it blew my mind *WHOOOSH* 

Will catch up with the series soon, as I'm highly impressed with Essie Lang's storytelling style! 💜
Was this review helpful?
What a fascinating book. I was impressed by the storyline and the characters were all well written and complex. Where there are complex storylines combined with intriguing characters the reader experience is magnified tremendously. To have a book that is well written as well as entertaining is a delight. Reading is about escaping your world and entering another one. Here I forgot about my own life and was immersed in the world created by the author. I would recommend this book.
Was this review helpful?