Cover Image: The Woman in the Library

The Woman in the Library

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Member Reviews

This book was unfortunately disappointing and not really what I expected it to be based on my taste. It has elements of a locked room mystery, it's a book about books, and it's a story within a story. All of that sounds great as a concept, but there were too many different layers and perspectives to really connect with the characters or get absorbed into the story. I felt like each time I would settle into what was happening, the perspective would change and it felt like an interruption. Instead of creating more suspense, it caused frustration. Because of this, I was not able to make it all the way through the book (so I can't speak for the ending). I read just under half of it, so I was able to get a solid sense of the writing style and the structure. 
Those who enjoy plot-driven mysteries without a lot of deep focus on characters may enjoy this more than I did, as well as people who like books about authors where you get to read the characters' actual manuscripts.
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for this ARC.
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I found the premise of this book to be interesting, but unfortunately felt it was a bit confusing to follow and therefore not enjoyable.
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This was ok - struggled to get through the first half.  I found the characters were not that interesting and the plot to be choppy and lack the flow of a well-paced thriller.  The Leo letter parts were a little confusing and seemed to be unnecessary until they were actually going to have an impact on the other characters.  Not my favorite but the concept was interesting and I enjoyed the Boston setting.  2.5 stars

Thank you to Poisoned Pen Press and NetGalley for the ARC.
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This was  really unusual book. It took me a little while to get into it and the blurb is a bit misleading- I thought it was going to be a cosy murder rnystery rather than thriller. 

It took me a while to get into the flipping back and forth - its takes about 45% of the way before something major happens and I felt this could be sped up a little bit. However  once we were in I did enjoy it and will recommend. 

Thank you for the arc.
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I wanted to love this book, but it just wasn’t there for me. I found Leo’s letters to be confusing and I had great difficulty rooting for any of the characters; they were all unlivable to me. Some readers love that, but it missed the mark for me. The ending was also glaringly obvious and a let-down from otherwise well-built suspense.
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⭐⭐⭐⭐ -- Love the cover of this one!

This was a thoroughly entertaining read. A mystery within a mystery that was amazingly well written and paced. A plot that is clever and keeps you guessing until the end. Wonderful characters and a great setting. What more can you ask for? I knocked this one out in two days. 👍🏻👍🏻

**ARC Via NetGalley**
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Fun, fun, fun book!  The story starts with four people sharing a table at the Boston Public Library. One is a writer, so we get to see her writer’s impressions of everyone as she builds a story around them.  Then there’s a scream, which leads to the four getting to know each other and planning to meet outside the library. 

And within the story, there’s a second story told by letters from a penpal of sorts.  Its difficult to explain clearly, but it added to the enjoyment.

There were several twists and turns that stretched belief, that the whole plot would revolve around something rather random as people getting to know each other, but it was still highly entertaining.  I’m looking for more from this author.

Highly recommended.I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley.com and voluntarily chose to review.
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This book within a book grips you from the beginning. Australian author Hannah Tigone is corresponding with an American author wannabe Leo Johnson. As the two correspond Hannah is sending him chapters of her book that is set where Leo lives. As the book progresses, Leo’s book is being rejected by publishers. Hannah realized the Leo may be doing more than just sending her pictures. 
Hannah’s book chapters follow a group that becomes friends after hearing a scream in the Boston Public Library. They find out that the woman that screamed is actually dead. The problem is that one of them is a killer. Will the actual killer be found?
I really enjoyed this book. While there were a few slow moments, it really picks up quickly. I would think I had it all figured out but I definitely did not.
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There was a lot going on in this book, made it a little confusing.  Also I found it hard to stay interested in it long enough to read more than one chapter art as time.  It took me so long to read it because I just want interested in it.  The story line was interesting enough but would have been better if it was faster paced. I did enjoy that there was a couple of different stories going on and I became quite concerned for the author.  Thank you to Netgalley, the publisher and author for the free advanced copy.  I'm voluntarily leaving my honest thoughts and review.
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The Woman in the Library is a play within a play novel. Hannah Tigone is an Australian writer writing during the pandemic a thriller set in Boston. A fellow writer she has never met named Leo Johnson has offered to help with feedback and scouting information. Hannah's novel is about four strangers (Freddie, an Australian writer, Marigold, a psychology student, Whit, a law student, and Cain, a writer with secrets) all in the Library when a scream is heard. Hours later a female body is found and the four strangers are now wondering what happened. 

Throughout the course of the book the stakes for both Hannah and Freddie get higher and higher. The concept was very interesting and while it took a minute to get used to it was very interesting and kept me reading. For readers who need a break from the formula type mystery/thriller novels pick this one up.
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The unique premise of a story within a story drew me in, however it was a little slow paced and confusing at first. We have an aussie author with an American pan pal, writing a mystrey set in a libarary in Boston, and her fictional counterpart writes a similar novel with corresponding characters. It took me awhile to understand the relations and it only became clearer as the book progressed.

There is a lot of susspension of disbeleif necessary at the outset of the story. Freddie, our main character seemed a little too naive and trusting plunging fast into a relationship with the strangers she met at the library. 
I cam very close to DNFing when a major twist that came more than halfway through got me hooked, and helped me finish the novel in one go.

In the background is the author Hannah Tigone. We know very little about her, except that she is asuccessful Australian author and that she is black. Most of what we know of her is revealed by Leo her American friend and correspondent, an aspiring writer who urges her to disclose the race of the characters, and to incorporate Covid into the story. He seems very helpful in explaining American idioms and phrasing, as well as researching locations. But his readings of the text seem a little ascewed in a disturbing way. As the story progresses we realize that he is not exactly as he presents himself.

I feel like the thing that eventually went a little missing is the connection to the characters. The clever construction takes away from the emotional impact, so it worked as a clever tale but left me a little cold.

Thanks to NetGalley and Poisoned Pen Press for a chance to read the Arc in advance.
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i really liked the concept - a writer caught at the library at the same time as a murder takes place. she starts writing a book based on the people at her table in the library all while they try and find out more about the murder. it's a fun concept! the execution was just a bit weak and the writing style was strange. definitely original though!
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Good read. Loved the concept but it ended rather hastily. I’ll definitely be looking for more from this author.
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I just did not like this book. The characters were truly all annoying and insufferable. I'm not even someone who needs to have likeable characters in order to enjoy a book, but at least have them full fleshed out and realized. There was no depth to any part of the story, in my opinion.
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This book was not what I expected. There was very little about the library mentioned. It turned out to be about an author writing a book about a murder. It seemed like a cozy mystery and I am not fond of those. It is a quick simple read however with a romance or two included.
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If you made the movie Inception into a book about writing books, you might end up with something close to The Woman in the Library by Sulari Gentill, a book with more layers than Shrek’s infamous onion metaphor.

Four people are using the Boston Public Library’s reading room one morning when the peace and quiet are interrupted by the sound of a woman’s scream. As they wait for security to investigate, the group begins to talk: Winifred/Freddie is an Australian author living in Boston on a scholarship, Marigold is a psychology student at the university, Whit is a bored law student, and Cain is a published author. When a woman’s body is eventually discovered, the group finds themselves becoming more and more involved in the investigation because one of the people who were sitting at the table is a murderer and Freddie is now using their lives to write her very own masterpiece.

However, that’s not the only story, because the story of the four friends is itself being told to us by its author Hannah Tigone as we learn through a series of letters sent to her, one after each chapter, by her increasingly invested beta reader Leo. Leo is helping Hannah out with some research in Boston while he writes his own novel but soon a new mystery is formed outside of the story Hannah is writing too.

The Woman in the Library is a brilliantly written and cleverly crafted book that deserves far more popularity than it seems to be getting but might just be too smart to ever receive it. It can be tricky to follow at times because of the multiple layers where characters are themselves characters in books written by other characters (I think I counted four separate levels of storytelling) but I found that I quickly wrapped my head around things once I was a few chapters in. There were some clever plot twists scattered throughout that will have you casting doubt on pretty much everyone, and I loved how the writing had you second guessing (or maybe even triple or quadruple guessing) about who could and could not be trusted after all. The secondary plot happening in the beta reader notes/letters ended up being my favorite part of the whole book as it slowly unfolded with occasional sudden reveals. This was a story mechanic I don’t think I’ve ever seen used before and I loved how it played with the core story and made you see those events in a different light.

The Woman in the Library ended up being one of those can’t-put-it-down books that kept me up late getting to the end, even though it was miles away from what the synopsis made me think it was about. This is a mystery/thriller that is absolutely worth your time.
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I actually really enjoyed this!!! But I felt like the last paragraph was unsatisfying--it kind of felt disjointed from the rest of the narrative. Like, huh? Great mystery with interesting development, good resolution, and a very odd last sentence or two.
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Great. book.. enjoyed reading it and plan to have it as my next book club pick. The characters were engaging and I really liked how all the characters entertwined with each other. This is a great book for a beach day or rainy day.
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Who is the killer? You think its A but you also think its B or even C… This book is going to drive you crazy in terms of trying to figure out who is the actual killer!
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A woman screams and security tells everyone to sit tight while they investigate.  There are four strangers who are pushed together and told to wait until security can say it's safe.  The strangers chat and become friendly with one another in the midst of waiting.  They discuss their reasons for visiting the reading room and more.  They soon find out that a woman has been murdered.  There is a killer among the group of four who have just met but who could it be and why would they kill?  Dive in and see if you can figure out who the killer is among them!
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