Monday, July 8, 2013

Buried in a Book review

I found Buried in a Book by Lucy Arlington to be a bit uneven and all over the place. As this is Arlington's first cozy mystery, and I believe first book, I think she just hasn't hit her stride yet.

The writing was decent and the dialogue was good but the rest was a little too cutesy. The setting of Inspiration Valley was way too storybook village - I get what she was trying to do but it felt like it was taking place in a Disney cartoon. Additionally, everyone in the book is a character, by which I mean they were typecast.  

The intrepid journalist turned literary agency intern Lila seems very scattered. I couldn't figure out how this woman had been a successful reporter and had raised a son through high school when she seemed very scattered during the events of the book. Also, she's supposed to be in her mid-40s but when it comes to men and relationships, she acts like a teenager which I found unpleasant. Lila does have a few things working for her - she's clearly intelligent, very hard working, and stubborn as hell.

One of the potential love interests for Lila is Sean who happens to be a cop assigned to investigate the murder at the agency that is the central premise of the book. He came across as very condescending toward Lila regarding the investigation and the various other criminal problems in the book that she is a party to. As a character I didn't love him.

I did enjoy the characterizations of the other literary agents and the authors that were introduced. They were fun and interesting and helped keep the story from bogging down. 

Also the mystery did remain a mystery to me until the murderer was revealed in the book. I so often can guess the whodunnit in mysteries and I always enjoy not being sure until the very end.

Buried in a Book was good enough that I'll probably pick up the second book in the series with the hope that Arlington has worked out the kinks a bit.


After losing her job as a journalist at the age of forty-five, Lila Wilkins accepts an internship at A Novel Idea, a thriving literary agency in North Carolina. Being paid to read seems perfect to Lila, although it's difficult with the cast of quirky co-workers and piles of query letters. But when a penniless aspiring author drops dead in the agency's waiting room-and Lila discovers a series of threatening letters-she's determined to find out who wrote him off.

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