A Just Clause

Booktown Mystery, Book #11

By Lorna Barrett

ISBN13: 9780399585913

Author website: http://lornabarrett.com/

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Kayt



Just when things are getting back to normal in Booktown, Tricia and Angelica have their lives turned upside down by a shocking visitor from their past in this latest entry in Lorna Barrett s New York Times bestselling series.

Tricia Miles, mystery bookstore owner and amateur sleuth, is in for a surprise when her ne er-do-well father, John, comes to town and promptly becomes a prime suspect in the murder of a woman with her own scandalous past. Even Tricia s faith in the old man is shaken when the Stoneham police break the news that her father is a known con man who has done jail time.

But what about bestselling thriller author Steven Richardson? Is it a coincidence that he arrived for a book signing just before the crime or that the victim was found with a signed copy of his latest bestseller?

From merlot to murder, Tricia is determined to clear the family name before another body shows up and ruins Stoneham s first and highly anticipated wine and jazz festival.”


A Just Clause is the 11th book in author Lorna Barrett’s “Booktown Mystery” series and I loved it. Everything that drew me to this series was there and more. I was excited when I first found these books because seriously – a town based around bookstores. Yes that is the ticket. Tricia Miles is a fun protagonist with her sister Angelica. They are a hoot these days, not so in the beginning when I was sure I would never like Angelica. These characters have grown and are so enjoyable, along with Mr. Everett and Pixie and the gang. We also see Tricia’s parents in this one. Not sure I enjoyed the parents that much, especially when we hear how the girls were treated as children. Things make more sense though when we get more background.

Tricia’s bookstore Haven’t Got A Clue is hosting a famous author’s book signing and still do renovations on her upstairs living quarters. A surprise guest shows up at the signing – the ladies father. He is about as welcome as the black plague after his last visit which cost the girls (mostly Angelica) a pretty penny. He and the author are both seen being slapped by Carol Talbot right before she is found murdered. Tricia learns her father has a history as a con artist and thief and maybe more and he is now the prime suspect in Mrs. Talbot’s murder, especially after learning the two had an intimate relationship. Tricia will have to work twice as hard to find the answers and murdered this time. At the same time the girls will have to figure out what to do with their dad. Best answer to that, get their parents back together.

Tricia finds out that Carol Talbot was hiding quite a bit and is more than just her biggest rival playing darts. What was going on with Carol and her neighbors? What was this collection she was selling? How does this all play into her murder? Could her father have actually killed her to get money? Well, Tricia is going to find the answers and try to salvage Stoneham’s first Jazz and Wine festival. And hopefully get her home finished so she and Mrs. Marple can finally settle in to one place and be at home. While they are at it, Tricia and Angelica have to work on their mother to take their shameful father back or be stuck with him. The relationships between them and their parents is a tough one, but in this installment I think the reader really gets an insight into the dynamics. That is a nice aside to the wonderful mystery author Lorna Barrett has woven in A Just Clause.

I have been a big fan of “Booktown Mystery” series since the first one. These characters have grown so much and become family with each other and like friends to me. Lorna Barrett’s writing style and plotting are wonderful. Each book is better and that is saying a lot. Each book can also be read as a standalone, but I suggest reading the whole series. If you enjoy a tight mystery, great characters and a pleasant setting, A Just Clause is for you. Add in the family strife and you have a best seller. I love this series and this 11th installment is a winner.

*OBS would like to thank the publisher for supplying a free copy of this title in exchange for an honest review as part of their ongoing blog tour*