After the poor showing of the last mystery series I tried featuring someone in the book trade, AND the poor showing of the last series set in New Hampshire I was a bit nervous (and yet still excited) to pick up a new book I spotted on the shelf at the library.

The Booktown Mystery series, by Lorna Barrett
In this series, the author imagines a small town in Southern NH which has decided to remake itself as the local Hay-on-Wye. Stoneham, NH is a fictional place (if only it weren’t) which seems to be located near Brookline and Mason, a bit west of Nashua. Unlike the Josie Prescott novels, this author seems to have done more homework in properly portraying the size of populations involved, and though I was alert through the whole first book for egregious errors, nothing really leapt out at me. The protaganist, Tricia Miles, the owner of a mystery book store in Stoneham, is considerably more likable than Cliff Janeway, and there’s an interesting set of supporting characters who also get some actual development. The weak point was the mystery itself, which literally involved an evil twin and a few highly questionable bits where a previously normal character was somehow sensed to be creepy and unstable then subsequently became so. Even with that, though, it was good enough to keep going with the series.


  1. jun:

    Hahaha, evil twin. But still, it sounds like it may be diverting fun.

    (August 29th, 2009 at 6:34 pm)
  2. K:

    I got #2 out today, so we shall see!

    (August 30th, 2009 at 2:05 am)