Bibliomysteries: Stories of Crime in the World of Books and Bookstores (Bibliomysteries)

by Otto Penzler

Hardcover, 2017





Pegasus Books (2017)


An anthology of specially commissioned stories set in literary venues includes contributions by such writers as Loren D. Estleman, Anne Perry, and Laura Lippman.

User reviews

LibraryThing member thornton37814
As with most collections of short stories, some resonated more with me than others.

"An Acceptable Sacrifice" by Jeffery Deaver - Mexican drug lord with a weakness for books. Not my thing.

"Pronghorns of the Third Reich" by C J Box - A couple of men kidnap a lawyer who won a case involving one of the men and his grandfather. Books play a role, but I don't want to give away the plot.

"The Book of Virtue" by Ken Bruen - A lot of short choppy sentences that create a tale a bit too "noir" and full of crude language for me.

"The Book of Ghosts" by Reed Farrel Coleman - A story born out of a World War II fabrication of a "Book of Ghosts."

"The Final Testament" by Peter Blauner - Sauerwald visits Freud in Britain, discussing Freud's books, a manuscript Freud is writing, and one Sauerwald himself wrote. It gets bogged down in places.

"What's In a Name?" by Thomas H. Cook - An old schoolmate visits Altman carrying a manuscript. Book has an interesting twist.

"Book Club" by Loren D. Estleman - Guy who collects rare books is murdered.

"Death Leaves a Bookmark" by William Link - Excellent mystery featuring Lt. Columbo as detective.This was my personal favorite in the collection.

"The Book Thing" by Laura Lippman - What's going on with a series of book thefts in a Baltimore children's bookstore? Tess helps discover what's going on and finds a way to prevent it in the future. I liked this one a lot.

"The Scroll" by Anne Perry - Mystery centers on the discovery of a scroll, written in Aramaic, with unusual properties.

"It's in the Book" by Mickey Spillane & Max Allan Collins - Mike Hammer is entrusted with a finding book or ledger believed to exist. Spillane is not my typical mystery read, but I liked this one a lot.

"The Long Sonata of the Dead" by Andrew Taylor - This is set in the London Library. There's a man having an affair. I'm really not quite sure what to make of this one. It's just weird.

"Rides a Stranger" by David Bell - A college professor returns home for his dad's funeral, making a surprising discovery about his father's literary life.

"The Caxton Library & Book Depository" by John Connolly - A man witnesses what appears to be a re-enactment of Anna Karenina. Then he witnesses it again. His investigations of the strange matter lead him to the Caxton Library.

"The Book Case" by Nelson DeMille - Bookstore owner is killed by a bookcase falling on him. It appears an accident to most, but the detective discovers wedges holding the case in place were removed. He interviewed suspects and solved the case.

My favorite stories were not those written by the authors I typically read and enjoy. Readers may discover they wish to give a chance to a "new to them" author or to one who may be a better writer now than in earlier days.

I received an electronic advance review copy through NetGalley with the expectation of an honest review.
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LibraryThing member cbl_tn
The short mysteries in this collection were specially commissioned by the Mysterious Bookshop. All of the mysteries have something to do with books, bookstores, and/or libraries. Mystery aficionados will recognize most, if not all, of the contributors to the collection. I gravitate more towards cozies, historical mysteries, and the occasional police procedural. This collection is heavier in the private detective and hard-boiled/noir genres. The stories by my two favorite authors among the contributors (C. J. Box and Anne Perry) are quite a bit different from their usual fare. Most of the historical stories have something to do with Nazis and the Third Reich, so much that it seems like overkill. The stories I'll remember most are “Pronghorns of the Third Reich” by C. J. Box (inspired by a real photograph), “The Book Thing” by Laura Lippman (featuring her series P.I. Tess Monaghan and Baltimore's real-life Book Thing), “It's In the Book” (an unfinished short story by the great Mickey Spillane, completed by Max Allan Collins), and “The Caxton Lending Library & Book Depository” by John Connolly, which reminded me that it's been too long since I read my last Thursday Next novel. While it would be a nice gift for book-loving mystery fans, many readers may prefer to borrow this one from their local library.

This review is based on an electronic advanced reading copy provided by the publisher through NetGalley.
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LibraryThing member jamespurcell
Mostly good, some better. The CJ Box and Anne Perry very true to their usual form.


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