cover image Once upon a Spine: A Bibliophile Mystery

Once upon a Spine: A Bibliophile Mystery

Kate Carlisle. Berkley Prime Crime, $25 (288p) ISBN 978-0-4514-7772-9

Carlisle’s discursive 11th Bibliophile mystery (after 2016’s Books of a Feather) finds bookbinder and heiress Brooklyn Wainwright coveting a rare edition of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland in a San Francisco book shop. But her main concern is the imminent arrival from England of the upper-class parents of her tall, dark, and handsome fiancé, Derek Stone, a former British secret agent who now runs an internationally renowned private security agency. How will these toffs get along with Brooklyn’s own hippy-dippy family? Meanwhile, during a visit to the Rabbit Hole, a health food shop, she discovers the owner unconscious and the bare feet of a dead man poking out from beneath a section of heavy shelving. Detailed instructions on how to make handmade paper and remove bookplates, as well as digressions on shopping and descriptions of every meal, compensate for the perfunctory sleuthing and unlikely resolution of the murder case. Carlisle rounds out this cozy with recipes for such dishes as “hot buttered rump bites” and “perky breast nibbles.” [em]Agent: Christina Hogrebe, Jane Rotrosen Agency. (June) [/em]