The Williamsburg Forgeries

John Ballinger, Author St. Martin's Press $17.95 (276p) ISBN 978-0-312-02670-7
Two intriguing and distinctly separate plots are handled deftly and eventually dovetail in this first mystery, set in Colonial Williamsburg. Brad Parker is a middle-aged, highly respected antiquarian bookstore owner with special talents: he once worked for the CIA. When a colleague, Carl Riesling, is bludgeoned to death in his bookstore, Brad helps the amateurish local police discover that Carl had been busy printing forgeries of rare books and had seemingly hoodwinked enormously wealthy, politically influential Jonathan Avery into buying them. A scholarly but sinister college librarian is about to call a press conference and declare that Avery, who knew the books were forged, is somehow implicated in Riesling's death. Meanwhile, in the second plot, Brad's shop assistant, psychopathic Jebediah Stuart, has joined forces with two accomplices and held up a bus filled with gamblers headed for Atlantic City. These three felons have unwittingly acquired some microfilm highly prized by the Mafia, which is now pursuing Jebediah; he has hidden the microfillm in one of Brad Parker's rarest books. Ballinger, himself the owner of an antiquarian bookstore in Williamsburg, knows whereof he speaks. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 02/27/1989
Release date: 03/01/1989
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