The Ghost and the Bogus Besteller

The Ghost and the Bogus Bestseller by Cleo Coyle

Halloween may be over, but there’s still a ghost lurking around Penelope (Pen) Thornton-McClure and her Buy the Book store.  Shortly after Pen became a widow with a young son, she packed up her bags and landed on her Aunt Sadie’s doorstep – bound and determined to start a new life.

Unfortunately, poor Sadie had troubles of her own — she inherited her father’s faltering bookstore.  But Pen jumped right in and invested her husband’s insurance money to totally revamp the failing bookstore. With Sadie’s help, they found themselves in a quaint and cozy bookstore and actually turning a profit.

Pen also discovered that the bookstore came with her own personal ghost.  Jack Shepard was a hard-boiled private eye back in the 40’s when women were “dames” and bad guys hung out in colorless alleyways, endlessly dragging on chains of cigarettes.

Pen and Sadie are busy filling their shelves with out-of-print and current books, including the new spicy bestseller, Shades of Leather.  But this bestseller doesn’t just bring in more customers to the bookstore, it also brings shades of murder!

As they say, the plot thickens as bodies turn up and they all seem to have a tie-in with the hot selling Shades of Leather.  One of Pen’s friends becomes a hit and run victim and one of her customers appears to have had a nasty, fatal accident.

As the days goes by, it’s apparent to Pen that things are not what they seem.  The author of Shades of Leather suddenly becomes a large question mark as the “so-called” accidents lead to a trail of murder in the first.

The Ghost and the Bogus Bestseller will quietly drag you into this delightful series that took a long breather, and is now back from the dead and better than ever.  Fans of the hard-boiled detective era will especially enjoy the likes of Jack Shepard’s tough talking ghost.  Jack takes you and Pen back to the seedy underbelly of smoky nightclubs and foggy street scenes to help expose the real truth behind the sinfully erotic Shades of Leather.

I’m totally in awe of the writing team known as Cleo Coyle.  How Cleo Coyle can switch gears from the stellar Coffeehouse Mysteries to this unique series with a hard-boiled flare, remains a true mystery to me!

If Jack Shepard were alive today, he’d say “Hey Cleo, you are one swell dame!”

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