Death By the Book


Death by the Book
Julianna Deering
Bethany House

 After greatly enjoying the first book in this series, I was really looking forward to this one! I would say I enjoyed about 90% of the's just that something happened that I didn't care for (more on that later)

I do like Drew and Madeline; their relationship is sweet and (mostly)uncomplicated but since there's so much going on with the plot it works well and doesn't distract from the mystery. As for the mystery itself- oh. my. word. Shakespeare murders??? Right up my alley. (I mean, not the murdering, of course. The Shakespeare) I loved that aspect. And of course, the writing was wonderfully in tune to the era. The character of Madeline's prickly aunt was also a humorous addition to the story.

Now, there was a bit of objectionable content- murders can be on the sordid side. Nothing explicit and nothing worse than you'd find in an Agatha Christie (and this being Christian fiction, of course it was much cleaner) But younger readers might not want to try this one.

All right- now here's the problem I had, and it's a *MAJOR SPOILER* Ummm...the conclusion to mystery was just kind of disappointing. All the murders were a set-up by rather unhinged woman just for Drew to solve. I don't know why, but that just kind of a let-down. I was hoping there was some really clever way all of the murder victims were connected, but really it just happened to be people that Drew was acquainted with. (and then Madeline's aunt conveniently admitting she was objecting to Drew and Madeline's relationship just to put it to the test? I don't know, everything seemed to be conveniently resolved there at the end)*END OF SPOILER* It's the only reason this book gets three instead of four stars.

SO I did find the ending rather disappointing, which is sad when I enjoyed pretty much *all* of the rest of the book a whole lot. Hopefully the conclusion to this series will impress me where this last book failed to. But that doesn't mean the book isn't worth reading, and some people might not be bothered the way I was about the mystery's resolution. So, by all means, try it!

Rating: 8

I received this book free from netgalley in exchange for my honest review.


  1. Despite the slow start (which I'm reading in fellow reviews, too), I'm excited about this novel! The first book was smashing and Julianna certainly has the perfect "voice" for this era. :)


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