Title: Ink and Shadows
Author: Ellery Adams
Series: A Secret, Book, and Scone Mystery #4
Publisher: Kensington
Release Date: 1/26/2021
Pages: 266
Book Source: Netgalley

“Nora Pennington is known for her window displays, and as Halloween approaches, she decides to showcase fictional heroines like Roald Dahl’s Matilda and Madeline Miller’s Circe. A family-values group disapproves of the magical themes, though, and wastes no time launching a modern-day witch hunt. Suddenly, former friends and customers are targeting not only Nora and Miracle Books, but a new shopkeeper, Celeste, who’s been selling CBD oil products.
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Nora and her friends in the Secret, Book, and Scone Society are doing their best to put an end to the strife—but then someone puts an end to a life. Though the death is declared an accident, the ruling can’t explain the old book page covered with strange symbols and disturbing drawings left under Nora’s doormat, a postcard from an anonymous stalker, or multiple cases of vandalism.
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The only hope is that Nora can be a heroine herself and lead the Secret, Book, and Scone Society in a successful investigation—before more bodies turn up and the secrets from Celeste’s past come back to haunt them all …” – Amazon

Kim’s Review

Ink and Shadows by Ellery Adams is a book lover’s dream. Adams incorporates so many book titles into the story and her window/table displays that I was constantly smiling with nostalgia for having read the books or stopping to look up a title and often add it to my TBR. I was so happy to see that Adams had included a list of the titles at the end of the book, in case I had missed any. And the quotes at the beginning of each chapter added another layer that bibliophiles are sure to enjoy.

Halloween is my favorite holiday so all the nods to it, along with the festivals, decorating, and books were wonderful to read about. If I owned a bookshop or still worked at the library I would copy many ideas from her Strong Women window display for next Halloween. There was an occult aspect that went with the story, but I never felt like it was scary, instead adding to the enjoyment of learning about a new topic… and it does take place around Halloween after all! Adams really does follow the theme of strong women through every aspect of the story and I really, really loved it.

This is the first book that I’ve read in the Secret, Book, and Scone mysteries but I was able to quickly get a feel for the characters and Adams added the perfect amount of background information from previous books that I never felt lost. After enjoying this one so much I’m glad I received the first book in the series, so I can read the first three and catch up.

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