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San Francisco book-restoration expert Brooklyn Wainwright was hoping for a fun, relaxing weekend at a local book fair, but a murderer made other plans in the latest in this New York Times bestselling series. Brooklyn and her new hunky husband, Derek, are excited to be guests at Dharma’s first annual Book Festival. The entire town is involved and Brooklyn’s mom Rebecca is ta San Francisco book-restoration expert Brooklyn Wainwright was hoping for a fun, relaxing weekend at a local book fair, but a murderer made other plans in the latest in this New York Times bestselling series. Brooklyn and her new hunky husband, Derek, are excited to be guests at Dharma’s first annual Book Festival. The entire town is involved and Brooklyn’s mom Rebecca is taking charge. In addition to all of her other event related duties, she’s got Brooklyn doing rare book appraisals and is also staging Little Women, the musical to delight the festival goers. If that wasn’t enough, she and Meg—Derek’s mom—will have a booth where they read palms and tarot cards. Brooklyn couldn’t be prouder of her mom’s do-it-all attitude so when a greedy local businessman who seems intent on destroying Dharma starts harassing Rebecca, Brooklyn is ready to take him down. Rebecca is able to hold her own with the nasty jerk until one of her fellow festival committee members is brutally murdered and the money for the festival seems to have vanished into thin air.  Things get even more personal when one of Brooklyn’s nearest and dearest is nearly run down in cold blood. Brooklyn and Derek go into attack mode and the pressure is on to catch a spineless killer before they find themselves skipping the festival for a funeral.


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San Francisco book-restoration expert Brooklyn Wainwright was hoping for a fun, relaxing weekend at a local book fair, but a murderer made other plans in the latest in this New York Times bestselling series. Brooklyn and her new hunky husband, Derek, are excited to be guests at Dharma’s first annual Book Festival. The entire town is involved and Brooklyn’s mom Rebecca is ta San Francisco book-restoration expert Brooklyn Wainwright was hoping for a fun, relaxing weekend at a local book fair, but a murderer made other plans in the latest in this New York Times bestselling series. Brooklyn and her new hunky husband, Derek, are excited to be guests at Dharma’s first annual Book Festival. The entire town is involved and Brooklyn’s mom Rebecca is taking charge. In addition to all of her other event related duties, she’s got Brooklyn doing rare book appraisals and is also staging Little Women, the musical to delight the festival goers. If that wasn’t enough, she and Meg—Derek’s mom—will have a booth where they read palms and tarot cards. Brooklyn couldn’t be prouder of her mom’s do-it-all attitude so when a greedy local businessman who seems intent on destroying Dharma starts harassing Rebecca, Brooklyn is ready to take him down. Rebecca is able to hold her own with the nasty jerk until one of her fellow festival committee members is brutally murdered and the money for the festival seems to have vanished into thin air.  Things get even more personal when one of Brooklyn’s nearest and dearest is nearly run down in cold blood. Brooklyn and Derek go into attack mode and the pressure is on to catch a spineless killer before they find themselves skipping the festival for a funeral.

30 review for The Grim Reader

  1. 5 out of 5

    Darinda

    Brooklyn is back in this 14th book in the Bibliophile mystery series. Brooklyn is a book-restoration expert who occasionally gets involved with a murder mystery. In this book, Brooklyn and her husband are visiting Dharma, a small town in California's wine country. They are gearing up for Dharma's first book festival, and Brooklyn's mother is organizing the event. Everything seems to be going well... until someone on the festival committee is murdered. Brooklyn is on the case to find the killer. L Brooklyn is back in this 14th book in the Bibliophile mystery series. Brooklyn is a book-restoration expert who occasionally gets involved with a murder mystery. In this book, Brooklyn and her husband are visiting Dharma, a small town in California's wine country. They are gearing up for Dharma's first book festival, and Brooklyn's mother is organizing the event. Everything seems to be going well... until someone on the festival committee is murdered. Brooklyn is on the case to find the killer. Likable characters in a charming setting. I haven't read all of the books in this series, but it is one I try to read in order. As with most series, it helps better understand backstories. Still, The Grim Reader can be read as a standalone. An engaging and entertaining cozy mystery. I enjoy cozies that involve books, so I usually like the books in this series. In addition to books, there is also a lot of talk about wine in The Grim Reader. A recommended read for fans of cozies featuring books and wine. Delightful and fun. I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  2. 4 out of 5

    JoAn

    The Grim Reader by Kate Carlisle is another fantastic addition to this cozy mystery series. I was excited when my library notified me that the book was ready for me to pickup because I knew that in this one I was going to get to go back to Dharma, CA with Brooklyn and Derek. A quickly paced plot, a chance to visit with old friends, books to repair, two murders to solve and a lovely little surprise for Brooklyn from Derek at the end made this a perfect afternoon read for me. Ms. Carlisle's writing The Grim Reader by Kate Carlisle is another fantastic addition to this cozy mystery series. I was excited when my library notified me that the book was ready for me to pickup because I knew that in this one I was going to get to go back to Dharma, CA with Brooklyn and Derek. A quickly paced plot, a chance to visit with old friends, books to repair, two murders to solve and a lovely little surprise for Brooklyn from Derek at the end made this a perfect afternoon read for me. Ms. Carlisle's writing is so comfortable for me as I spend days with her characters and never notice the passage of time "in the real world" that I hate when I come to the end of one of her books. If I could move to Dharma and become part of the Wainwright family, I would do it in a heartbeat. Thank you, Ms. Carlisle, for another adventure.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Taryn

    Brooklyn and her husband Derek are off to Dharma to not only visit family but Brooklyn is also go I g to be a part of the town's first annual Book Festival. Brooklyn's mom is in charge of the entire festival bringing in most of the town to be a part of it all. Brooklyn will have her own booth doing book appraisals, a fun craft for children and showing off her skills with book repair. When a local business man interrupts the meeting of the committee members working on the festival and threatens B Brooklyn and her husband Derek are off to Dharma to not only visit family but Brooklyn is also go I g to be a part of the town's first annual Book Festival. Brooklyn's mom is in charge of the entire festival bringing in most of the town to be a part of it all. Brooklyn will have her own booth doing book appraisals, a fun craft for children and showing off her skills with book repair. When a local business man interrupts the meeting of the committee members working on the festival and threatens Brooklyn's mom she is ready to jump in and defend. Her mom handles the situation admirably but it still leaves a bad taste in Brooklyn's mouth. Things go from bad to worse When a committee member is murdered and it looks like he stole all the Festival's funds. Brooklyn steps in to help her mom not only in investigating the man's death but also financially so that the festival can go on. After her mom is almost run over she realizes that she must dig deeper before those she loves end up hurt or worse dead. Follow along as Brooklyn and Derek take the investigation into their own hands in hopes of finding out the identity of the killer before he harms anyone else!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Monnie

    I've read one other book in this series - this is the 14th - and because I enjoyed the story and characters in that one (the 13th) so much, I was delighted to have the opportunity to read an advance review copy through NetGalley). I liked this one as well, albeit not quite as much. In part, I think, it's because main character Brooklyn Wainwright and her new husband and security consultant Derek Stone, somehow seemed more subdued here. And, there didn't seem to be as much emphasis on the how-tos I've read one other book in this series - this is the 14th - and because I enjoyed the story and characters in that one (the 13th) so much, I was delighted to have the opportunity to read an advance review copy through NetGalley). I liked this one as well, albeit not quite as much. In part, I think, it's because main character Brooklyn Wainwright and her new husband and security consultant Derek Stone, somehow seemed more subdued here. And, there didn't seem to be as much emphasis on the how-tos of Brooklyn's work as a bookbinder who specializes in rare book restoration (details in the previous book were fascinating to me, and I'd looked forward to learning more). In fact, Brooklyn, who narrates the story, wasn't even identified until the 11% mark on my Kindle. Another intriguing character popped in and out, but I never found out from whence he came. Because he always calls Brooklyn "Babe," it actually crossed my mind that Ranger, Stephanie Plum's hunky temptation in the popular series by Janet Evanovich, had somehow morphed into this series under a pseudonym). Once Brooklyn was properly identified, however, it was pretty much all systems go the rest of the way. She and Derek are back in Dharma, where her flower-child-like parents live amid the wineries of California's Sonoma region. Her mother is heading up the community's first annual Book Festival, which will be followed a week later by the grape harvest (her parents own a vineyard). Relationships are strained among some of the committee members, and one particularly nasty character - who's been buying up nearly foreclosed wineries in the area and turning them into producers of (gasp!) box wine - actually threatens Brooklyn's mother at one of the committee meetings. Not long after the meeting, Brooklyn's mother and Derek's mother find a dead body in the town hall - he's the treasurer for the festival. Further investigation reveals that the committee's bank account - about $70,000 - has vanished. Meanwhile, a local bookstore owner gave a raggedy old copy of "Little Women" to Brooklyn to restore, with the intent to sell it by silent auction at the festival (readers do get a bit of details on the restoration process). Still another murder follows, and from that point on, everything is focused on making the festival a success and finding out who the murderer is - ideally before some other character bites the dust. All in all it's an engaging experience, although I'd suggest that newbies read others in the series before tackling this one. That said, the recipes for some of the goodies mentioned in the story are at the end for those who are into such things (truthfully, they sound absolutely delicious; but anything with more than three ingredients doesn't get made at our house). And absolutely, I'll be watching for the next installment!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Annie (Under the Covers Book Blog)

    THE GRIM READER is book fourteen in the Bibliophile Mystery series and although all the mysteries can be read as a standalone, I always suggest reading this series in order because some of the scenes mentioned other parts in the other books. Plus, you can see the romance develop between Brooklyn and Derek, her husband. Now, after the last book, which became one of my favorite books of 2019, I was really looking forward to see what Kate Carlisle would do next. This time, Brooklyn and Derek ar THE GRIM READER is book fourteen in the Bibliophile Mystery series and although all the mysteries can be read as a standalone, I always suggest reading this series in order because some of the scenes mentioned other parts in the other books. Plus, you can see the romance develop between Brooklyn and Derek, her husband. Now, after the last book, which became one of my favorite books of 2019, I was really looking forward to see what Kate Carlisle would do next. This time, Brooklyn and Derek are in Dharma at a book festival. I felt like this book progressed a little more slowly than I would like. Especially in the beginning, it takes a while for things to really get moving. However, I do still enjoy Carlisle’s easy writing and flow. She creates a sense of community really well in this series and it’s nice to see different relationships unfold with their mothers. I’ve noticed that the books are becoming more and more intense in terms of the mysteries now. I guess that comes with writing so many books in the series. But things are not so over-the-top that they aren’t believable, so I really enjoy that aspect of the book. I look forward to seeing what Kate Carlisle releases next.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Kristina

    The Grim Reader by Kate Carlisle is the 14th A Bibliophile Mystery. I have read each book in this entertaining series, but The Grim Reader can be read as a standalone (but, really, why would you want to). I have enjoyed following Brooklyn from the very beginning. Brooklyn Wainwright is a bookbinder who specializes in rare books. She lives in San Francisco with her dashing husband, Derek Stone and their adorable cat, Charlie. Derek and Brooklyn are in Dharma, Brooklyn’s hometown, for the first an The Grim Reader by Kate Carlisle is the 14th A Bibliophile Mystery. I have read each book in this entertaining series, but The Grim Reader can be read as a standalone (but, really, why would you want to). I have enjoyed following Brooklyn from the very beginning. Brooklyn Wainwright is a bookbinder who specializes in rare books. She lives in San Francisco with her dashing husband, Derek Stone and their adorable cat, Charlie. Derek and Brooklyn are in Dharma, Brooklyn’s hometown, for the first annual Dharma Book Festival. This festival is featuring Little Women by Louisa May Alcott and will include a one-night performance of Little Women—the musical (it was performed on Broadway). Brooklyn’s mother, Becky Wainwright is co-chair of the festival committee and she has been having a difficult time with Jacob Banyan. Jacob has been acquiring wineries in the area by dubious means and turning their fine vintage into a box wine which has the other winery owners up in arms. Jacob threatens Becky more than once in an attempt to get his way. I like that all the women in the Wainwright family are strong and creative. Brooklyn is a spitfire just like her mother. The Grim Reader contains Kate Carlisle’s signature writing style which is engaging. The story is narrated by Brooklyn. I was quickly drawn into the book which moved along at a quick page. The mystery was intriguing with a murder or two, an attempt on Becky’s life, and missing money. While I narrowed in on my choice of killer early on, my interest did not wane. I kept turning the pages quickly so I could see how the whodunit would play out. The reveal scene was a delightful and creative. The dialogue is witty and provided me with many laughs. Brooklyn does a little book restoration in this story, but not as much as in other books. I missed Brooklyn doing a creative, unique paper project. Of course, Brooklyn is busy visiting family, preparing for the festival, keeping her mother safe, playing with Charlie, and repairing a first edition copy of Little Women. There are some delectable culinary delights in this book that will have your mouth watering. Thankfully, there are recipes at the end of the book. There are some great tidbits regarding Little Women in the book. The Grim Reader is a story that takes me on a journey into Brooklyn’s world that I was sad to see end. I cannot wait for the next A Bibliophile Mystery to come out next year. My favorite line comes from Brooklyn when she said, “Couldn’t we stumble across a poisoning once in a while.” Poor Brooklyn has an aversion to blood. One of Brooklyn’s other lines that had me laughing is, “So suck it up buttercup.” The Grim Reader is a compelling cozy mystery with a big bully, committee chaos, beaucoup blood, missing money, a bounty of books, and a fun festival.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Lorraine

    I love it when a new bibliophile mystery by Kate Carlisle is released. I opened the box and began reading right then and there. Kate Carlisle’s The Grim Reader (Bibliophile Mystery #14) is set in California’s wine country and Dharma, the place where Brooklyn Wainwright, the protagonist and bookbinder, was raised. Dharma is having a book festival, and Brooklyn and her husband, Commander Derek Stone have arrived for the festival, but where Brooklyn goes, dead bodies seem to appear. This festival i I love it when a new bibliophile mystery by Kate Carlisle is released. I opened the box and began reading right then and there. Kate Carlisle’s The Grim Reader (Bibliophile Mystery #14) is set in California’s wine country and Dharma, the place where Brooklyn Wainwright, the protagonist and bookbinder, was raised. Dharma is having a book festival, and Brooklyn and her husband, Commander Derek Stone have arrived for the festival, but where Brooklyn goes, dead bodies seem to appear. This festival is no different. The whole town of Dharma is involved with the book festival along with Brooklyn and Derek’s families. The characters just come to life for me, and I feel that they are my friends. Thus, I find comfortable spot and jump into the story. So very enjoyable. Highly recommended. 5 stars.

  8. 5 out of 5

    The Crime Librarian

    The Grim Reader is Kate Carlisle’s fourteenth installment in the very popular Bibliophile Mystery series, of which I’ve now read the first and the last two. In it we find Brooklyn and her husband, Derek, back in her hometown of Dharma for the first ever Book Festival. It makes a great setting for a cozy mystery novel and gives the reader plenty of book references to please any bookish nerd. Since my favorite cozies are typically centered around book themes, this was perfect for me. I especially The Grim Reader is Kate Carlisle’s fourteenth installment in the very popular Bibliophile Mystery series, of which I’ve now read the first and the last two. In it we find Brooklyn and her husband, Derek, back in her hometown of Dharma for the first ever Book Festival. It makes a great setting for a cozy mystery novel and gives the reader plenty of book references to please any bookish nerd. Since my favorite cozies are typically centered around book themes, this was perfect for me. I especially love the scenes where Brooklyn lovingly repairs the antique book that she’s working on. I think it’s a fascinating profession and would love to see it done in real life. The festival also brings to the story many before unseen characters that make the pool of possible suspects larger than it would have otherwise and makes it a little harder to guess who the culprit really is. While I had my guesses, I was totally wrong on the who and why of the killer and his/her motivations. This to me is a sure sign of a good mystery. The only thing that kept me from giving it a five star and putting at the top of my list of favorites was the use of filler scenes. Towards the middle of the book there was about a ten percent or greater section that relied on multiple conversations between characters that seemed to be rehashing redundant or unnecessary information that really didn’t move the plot of the story along. Also, throughout the book each of Brooklyn’s and Derek’s family members and friends, which is quite a long list, made an appearance in the novel. While I love seeing familiar characters because they seem like old friends, I felt the author’s desire to add in each one made for some scenes that seemed awkward and really could have been better used to have moved the mystery along by adding in more sleuthing scenes. I believe this was done in an effort to tie in the story to the use of Little Women as the book club questions in the back seem to allude to this. However, I felt myself really not caring about this aspect of the book and wishing to move onto more of the mystery. Overall, it was a nice cozy mystery and I look forward to backtracking and reading more to fill in all the blanks. I received an advanced copy of this book given in exchange for an honest review.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Sara

    Love Perfect book right now. I love how upbeat everyone in this series is and I'm always excited for the next to come out!!

  10. 5 out of 5

    JoAnne McMaster (Any Good Book)

    Brooklyn Wainwright and her husband Derek Stone are going back to visit the small community of Dharma, California, where Brooklyn grew up. Dharma is having their first annual Book Festival, and Brooklyn will be one of the vendors, teaching children how to make accordion books and appraising books for people. She's excited once again to see her family, and Derek's mom and dad have recently purchased a summer home there, since one of their sons is living with Brooklyn's sister, and Derek's mom Meg Brooklyn Wainwright and her husband Derek Stone are going back to visit the small community of Dharma, California, where Brooklyn grew up. Dharma is having their first annual Book Festival, and Brooklyn will be one of the vendors, teaching children how to make accordion books and appraising books for people. She's excited once again to see her family, and Derek's mom and dad have recently purchased a summer home there, since one of their sons is living with Brooklyn's sister, and Derek's mom Meg has become best friends with Brooklyn's mom Becky. After they arrive they decide to surprise Becky at the festival meeting that she's chairing are are surprised themselves when a big man is standing in front of the group and starts arguing with Becky. Brooklyn and Derek are stunned, but watch the action, happy that Becky can hold her own. The man storms out, and they learn he's Jacob Banyan, and he's been buying up wineries in the county only to turn the wine into boxed wine instead of the fine wine like that produced by Brooklyn's family. He's angry because he's not being allowed into the festival to hawk his boxed wine, and is determined to take it out on the committee members, including Lawson Schmidt, whom he says something cryptic to before leaving. But Becky is excited that for this first festival they are putting on a musical version of Little Women, and they've managed to snag an ex-Hollywood movie star for the role of Marmee. Everyone's excited about the festival, and Brooklyn is also, though she's happier just to have family and friends around her. Unfortunately, things aren't going the way they're planned. There's more confrontations with Banyan, her mother has become a target of someone, and then there's a murder...one where Becky and Meg have found the body. Now everyone is on edge, and Brooklyn is trying to protect her mother with people watching her round-the-clock. But when a second murder occurs, the ante is upped and she knows that not only is there a killer out there, but her beloved mom is in danger, and Brooklyn will do whatever it takes to protect her... This is the fourteenth book in the series, and I do believe that it's just getting better every time. I discovered this series mid-way, and I'm enjoying going back to the beginning 'where it all started.' Saying that, you can see how much I love it. In this book, we get to know more about Becky, which is nice. She has both an inner and outer strength, which she passed on to Brooklyn, but Becky, for her part, isn't bothered by anything little like blood which still makes Brooklyn queasy. (Blood doesn't bother me, either, but my husband isn't real fond of it, ha!) We learn a little more about about the place Brooklyn grew up, which everyone thinks was a commune but really wasn't, and of course, the author reiterates how Brooklyn and her siblings got their names, which is always nice. I also like how the relationship between Meg and Becky has gotten stronger; and I've always found it funny that Becky is proud of Brooklyn not only for who she is, but the fact that she manages to find dead bodies. It's rather macabre, but still done in a humorous way, so when Becky and Meg find the body, they're almost excited to have done so. When the police start investigating, they want to know who wanted this person dead and why. But it leads to other things that are discovered and not in a good way - putting more than Becky in harm's way, and now Brooklyn and Derek are trying to find out what's going on while Brooklyn is still preparing for the festival. The plot is done beautifully, the dialogue is witty and fun, and the characters are given depth and are believable and animated. The area around Dharma is described so lovely that I'd like to visit it someday. Ms. Carlisle has a way with words and a talent for bringing you into the story from the first page and taking you on the journey with her to the end. It all comes to a head eventually, which we know it will; and when the killer is discovered and the motive for the murders, it's as old as time itself, but never dull in the telling. Highly recommended. I received an advance copy from Edelweiss and the publisher but this in no way influenced my review. https://joannesbooks.blogspot.com/202...

  11. 4 out of 5

    Neelam Babul

    The ultimate cozy mystery series for book lovers. THE GRIM READER follows book-restoration expert Brooklyn and her hubby Derek as they attend a major book festival. It's the perfect business opportunity, at least until one of the festival committee members is brutally murdered. A charming, entertaining, and fun read. This will have you hooked from start to finish!

  12. 4 out of 5

    Lois Rotella

    The setting is wonderful. A bookfare and a murder. Brooklyn and Derek try to find out who the murderer is before her mom becomes a victim. Well written and surprising finish. Looking for more books in this series.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Jamie

    A fun cozy set at a book festival. I look forward to reading more in this series. I really enjoyed Brooklyn and her family as well as the small town setting.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Barbara Rogers

    Series: Bibliophile Mystery #14 Publication Date: 6/2/20 Number of Pages: 336 This is a wonderful series and this book just adds to it. It is well-written, well-plotted, and the characters – both main and supporting – are superb. You’d love to meet them all in person and become friends with them. Brooklyn Wainwright, a bookbinder and restoration expert and her drool-worthy, security expert husband, Derek Stone, have their mothers to protect as well as multiple murders to solve in this story. It has Series: Bibliophile Mystery #14 Publication Date: 6/2/20 Number of Pages: 336 This is a wonderful series and this book just adds to it. It is well-written, well-plotted, and the characters – both main and supporting – are superb. You’d love to meet them all in person and become friends with them. Brooklyn Wainwright, a bookbinder and restoration expert and her drool-worthy, security expert husband, Derek Stone, have their mothers to protect as well as multiple murders to solve in this story. It has long been a dream of Brooklyn’s to have a book festival in her hometown of Dharma, and her mother, Rebecca, has worked for the last two years to make that happen. The festival is within a few days of beginning when Brooklyn and Drake arrive from San Francisco where they now live. Brooklyn is bubbling with excitement and can hardly wait for it to begin. Yet, when they head into town to pick her mother up from a planning committee meeting, they witness a large, burly man harassing and threatening her. While Rebecca deals with him and doesn’t let him cow her, Brooklyn and Derek worry that it could lead to more. When more harassment occurs and a dead body is found in the committee room, they go into high gear to protect Rebecca. Their chief suspect is the nasty businessman, Jacob Banyan, who continues to harass Rebecca. But, as more clues are discovered, more attempts on Rebecca’s life are made, and yet another body is discovered, they have more suspects than they know what to do with. Is embezzlement at the bottom of crimes, or is it the first edition of Little Woman that Brooklyn is restoring – or is it something else altogether? You’ll just have to read this delightful mystery, meet all of the suspects, and figure it out for yourself. Can there be more than one perpetrator? In addition to the crimes to solve, we get a delightful visit with both Brooklyn’s and Derek’s delightful families. Brooklyn’s parents are deadheads from the sixties who followed Guru Bob to the Sonoma Valley and set about creating their own community, Dharma. They are all now very wealthy and well-respected members of the community – even though Rebecca still gets into karma, chakra’s, spirit cleansing, etc. You’ll love them. If you get the chance, be sure to read the series from the beginning so you can get to know and learn to appreciate all of the cast of characters. If you are looking for a delightful read, this is the one for you. Happy solving! I voluntarily read and reviewed an Advanced Reader Copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

  15. 4 out of 5

    K.A. Davis

    THE GRIM READER, the fourteenth book in the Bibliophile Mystery series by Kate Carlisle, brings the reader back to the delightful setting of Dharma, a quaint wine country town situated in Sonoma County in Northern California. A long-time fan, I’ve greatly enjoyed previous books that has protagonist, Brooklyn, and her new husband, Derek, surrounded by their family and close friends. THE GRIM READER brings them all back together for the first annual Book Festival in Dharma. The close-knit relation THE GRIM READER, the fourteenth book in the Bibliophile Mystery series by Kate Carlisle, brings the reader back to the delightful setting of Dharma, a quaint wine country town situated in Sonoma County in Northern California. A long-time fan, I’ve greatly enjoyed previous books that has protagonist, Brooklyn, and her new husband, Derek, surrounded by their family and close friends. THE GRIM READER brings them all back together for the first annual Book Festival in Dharma. The close-knit relationships Brooklyn and Derek’s family have together is heartwarming. I love how they’re supportive of each other with nary a jealous or snide remark to be seen within the in-laws. In fact, Brooklyn and Derek’s mothers have become best friends and together they are a force to be reckoned with. I greatly enjoyed seeing Brooklyn’s mom, Becky, take center stage in this story, which helps give the reader glimpses of why Brooklyn is who she’s become in adulthood. One of the greatest strengths in this series is the character development Ms. Carlisle brings throughout the arc of the books and builds on that development with each passing page. While Brooklyn and Derek’s families may be kindhearted, caring individuals (and most of the community is as well!) a greedy predator is gobbling up local vineyards and using the harvests to produce inferior boxed wine. He goes out of his way to harass and threaten the Book Festival committee, particularly, Becky. Early on in the book I thought I knew which way the mystery would go but Ms. Carlisle throws in several twists to keep the reader on their toes. I love how she intertwines a rare mishandled first edition copy of Little Women into the mystery along with scenes showcasing Brooklyn’s bookbinding and restoration skills. With plenty of suspicious suspects to keep the reader guessing, the plot unfolds at a nice pace until the dramatic reveal. The author does a great job of wrapping up all the threads in the story into an entertaining conclusion that left me wishing the next book in the series was ready for me to read! Brooklyn and Derek share many meals with their family and close friends during their visit to Dharma, especially breakfast. I was delighted to see the Ms. Carlisle provides several mouthwatering breakfast recipes at the back of the book, all which sound fabulous! I was provided an advance copy. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Cynthia

    I plan on devouring all of the previous books as soon as I get the chance. The Grim Reader by Kate Carlisle is book number 14 in the series. This is the first book that I have read in this series and it may be read as a standalone, although I plan on devouring all of the previous books as soon as I get the chance.  Brooklyn and husband, Derek, are in  Dharma for the first annual Book Fair, and it seems that wherever these two go a murder is sure to follow. Brooklyn is a fun heroine and I absolute I plan on devouring all of the previous books as soon as I get the chance. The Grim Reader by Kate Carlisle is book number 14 in the series. This is the first book that I have read in this series and it may be read as a standalone, although I plan on devouring all of the previous books as soon as I get the chance.  Brooklyn and husband, Derek, are in  Dharma for the first annual Book Fair, and it seems that wherever these two go a murder is sure to follow. Brooklyn is a fun heroine and I absolutely love the banter between her and hunky hubby Derek. We get plenty of help from  Brooklyn's siblings, all unique in their own way with their awesome names, they are all named for the places that they were conceived in by their wonderful hippie parents, who endeared themselves to me right away. As the bodies pile up Brooklyn and Derek race to solve the murders before the killer strikes close to home. The twists and turns in this book, as well as the way the story unfolds, is very well done. I loved all of the Little Women references and the way that the mystery revolved around one of my all-time favorite books. With just the perfect balance between romance and mystery I was satisfied and if you like a great cozy mystery with a side of romance then you will enjoy this book. This review was originally posted on Cindy’s Book Stacks

  17. 5 out of 5

    Mona

    As one of Kate's Raters, I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. In this fourteenth installment of Carlisle's cozy Bibliophile Mystery series, book restoration expert, Brooklyn, and her husband, dashing security specialist, Derek, are off to Dharma, her hometown, for a holiday of wine and words. Her unflagging mother, Rebecca, is taking charge of its inaugural book festival. With the whole town involved and excitement in the air, it is shaping up to be an eve As one of Kate's Raters, I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. In this fourteenth installment of Carlisle's cozy Bibliophile Mystery series, book restoration expert, Brooklyn, and her husband, dashing security specialist, Derek, are off to Dharma, her hometown, for a holiday of wine and words. Her unflagging mother, Rebecca, is taking charge of its inaugural book festival. With the whole town involved and excitement in the air, it is shaping up to be an event to remember, with its fun booths. A musical performance of the official book of the festival, Alcott's Little Women, will be the grand finish to the festivities. But, what's a happy occasion without a buzzkill or two? And, what's a bibliophile mystery without a murder? Both Brooklyn and Derek come from large families that share a rare, enviable, congenial, and harmonious relationship. To the extent that one of Brooklyn's sisters is married to one of Derek's brothers. Not only that, Derek's parents bought a home in Dharma. Brooklyn and Derek's friends and family have made appearances in previous books, but not all at once. It's nice to see them all together. The moms, Rebecca and Meg, are like two peas in a pod and effortlessly funny. This was my favorite of the five books I've read in the series and that is saying a lot. Every book in this standalone series has a clever title and an engaging plot. In this book, characters, both returning and new, were fun to re-visit and meet. The malcontents were insufferable, yet interesting. They usually are. Story, action, humor, romance, and, of course,... delectable food, all made for an entertaining read. The culprit was not obvious. At least, not to me. Because of how this one ended, I, even more eagerly, await the next in the series.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Alicia Farage

    This is a series that I wait with anticipation for the next one and"The Grim Reader" did not disappoint me. Once I sat down to read it, I didn't stop until I finished it. I love the characters (they've become like family) and I loved that this one was set in Dharma. If I had a bucket list of 'book' locations to visit, Dharma would definitely be the list. It's well-written and has a very 'flowing' feel to it. Just enough background on the characters to refresh my memory without slowing the story d This is a series that I wait with anticipation for the next one and"The Grim Reader" did not disappoint me. Once I sat down to read it, I didn't stop until I finished it. I love the characters (they've become like family) and I loved that this one was set in Dharma. If I had a bucket list of 'book' locations to visit, Dharma would definitely be the list. It's well-written and has a very 'flowing' feel to it. Just enough background on the characters to refresh my memory without slowing the story down. It also would make it very easy for someone that hasn't read the series yet. (Although, I think this one that should be read in order.) The mystery kept me guessing throughout the book. I think that I knew the killer, but another twist would lead me in a different direction. I love mysteries that keep me on my toes and keep looking for clues. This is one of the those books that I couldn't stop reading but was sad when it ended. It's always such a long wait for the next one. Note: I received a copy with no expectations for a positive review.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Margo Sue

    This adventure takes Brooklyn and Derek back to Dharma. As always, I learned something more about bookbinding, which I love. I was happy to learn more about Brooklyn’s inheritance from Abraham – it had been a while since that was mentioned. It was fun to see Brooklyn’s mom take center stage. As always, the events and murder went hand in hand. As always with Kate’s books, the murder was part of the story, but the characters moved things along. I was torn between devouring this book to see what co This adventure takes Brooklyn and Derek back to Dharma. As always, I learned something more about bookbinding, which I love. I was happy to learn more about Brooklyn’s inheritance from Abraham – it had been a while since that was mentioned. It was fun to see Brooklyn’s mom take center stage. As always, the events and murder went hand in hand. As always with Kate’s books, the murder was part of the story, but the characters moved things along. I was torn between devouring this book to see what comes next and taking my time and enjoying the wonderful prose. I solved the problem by reading it twice!

  20. 4 out of 5

    Krysti

    The ultimate cozy mystery series for book lovers, THE GRIM READER follows book-restoration expert Brooklyn and her hunky hubby Derek as they attend a major book festival. It's the perfect business opportunity, at least until one of the festival committee members is brutally murdered. A charming, entertaining, and fun read. This will have you hooked from start to finish!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Julia

    I thought it was fun to have Brooklyn and Derek outside of their normal San Francisco sphere and spend this story up in the wine country in Dharma. Brooklyn's mom Becky is heading the committee for the town's first book festival, highlighting the novel Little Women. Small town committees make for ample skirmishes which are perfect for a mystery. It's been a strange year, so it was a welcome delight to be back with these familiar characters. I liked the sense of family their being in Dharma brin I thought it was fun to have Brooklyn and Derek outside of their normal San Francisco sphere and spend this story up in the wine country in Dharma. Brooklyn's mom Becky is heading the committee for the town's first book festival, highlighting the novel Little Women. Small town committees make for ample skirmishes which are perfect for a mystery. It's been a strange year, so it was a welcome delight to be back with these familiar characters. I liked the sense of family their being in Dharma brings to the story and how many of my other favorite characters get cameos by attending the festival.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    Loved this book! Of course, who wouldn’t love a book in this series? Or by this author. Brooklyn’s mom was such a neat lady. I think one of my favorite things about this author’s writing is how well she writes characters. I feel like I live in their community with them. But I don’t want to be the next one murdered lol.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Smitten

    Book restoration expert Brooklyn Wainwright is excited to return to her hometown of Dharma, California with her husband Derek. They are going to be assisting Brooklyn’s mother Rebecca with Dharma’s first book festival. In spite of some in-fights between committee members, the preparations are going well until Brooklyn’s mother and mother-in-law discover a dead body. When it looks like Rebecca, as well as Brooklyn, could be the next targets, Brooklyn is determined to find out who is behind the mu Book restoration expert Brooklyn Wainwright is excited to return to her hometown of Dharma, California with her husband Derek. They are going to be assisting Brooklyn’s mother Rebecca with Dharma’s first book festival. In spite of some in-fights between committee members, the preparations are going well until Brooklyn’s mother and mother-in-law discover a dead body. When it looks like Rebecca, as well as Brooklyn, could be the next targets, Brooklyn is determined to find out who is behind the murder. The Grim Reader is the fourteenth book in the Bibliophile series. I think fans of the series will enjoy the book more than new readers. I read two of the prior books in the middle of the series and still felt confused about who all the characters are. I like having the book take place during a book festival and since the town of Dharma is located in Northern California’s wine country, that makes a nice setting. In the other two books I’ve read in this series, what set them apart was the work Brooklyn did restoring books. I loved the detailed information about what is entailed and the books being restored were central to the story. In this installment, the parts that describe Brooklyn’s work on restoring a potentially valuable edition of a classic are well-done and very interesting. However, there were too few of these scenes and Brooklyn’s speciality seems to be an afterthought in the book which is disappointing. I found much of the dialogue in the book to be over-the-top, both the arguments during the festival planning meetings, as well as the loving words between Brooklyn’s family members. Neither end of the spectrum seems realistic to me and takes up too much of the book without moving the plot forward. It’s nice to see a loving, supporting family but the praise between the characters becomes less meaningful when repeated over and over. When Brooklyn was working on solving the mystery or working on book restoring, I enjoyed the book. Things get more exciting as the story nears the conclusion and I really liked the dramatic, unexpected way the book ends. Fans of the series will especially enjoy the final touching scene between Brooklyn and Derek. After the story ends, a few recipes and a book group discussion guide follow. ~ Christine

  24. 5 out of 5

    Diane

    The Grim Reader has just become my new favorite in this series. It is fast-paced and for me, had numerous laugh out loud moments. I really enjoyed the humor that was woven through moments of the story. This is book #14 in the Bibliophile Mystery series, but it definitely stands on its own. I am ready for more adventures with Brooklyn, Derek and the rest of their families!

  25. 4 out of 5

    J

    Got close to the end Couldn’t finish it, started skimming the chapters before I completely stopped. Do not recall being annoyed previously with this series. Too many “I love you. I love you too.” “Everyone loves..” “made me love him even more” it was like she had to tell us they were loved or liked. The actions for these feelings were pretty nonexistent. I like romance but I guess this was just too sappy this time around. I didn’t feel invested in these characters like I have with series before. Got close to the end Couldn’t finish it, started skimming the chapters before I completely stopped. Do not recall being annoyed previously with this series. Too many “I love you. I love you too.” “Everyone loves..” “made me love him even more” it was like she had to tell us they were loved or liked. The actions for these feelings were pretty nonexistent. I like romance but I guess this was just too sappy this time around. I didn’t feel invested in these characters like I have with series before. The mystery was dull as well for me. I’ll have to try finish this one at another time.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Cindy

    This was definitely not my favorite, way too much tarot, psychic gibberish or maybe I just got tired of it.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Nicole

    Brooklyn Wainwright and her husband Derek Stone are spending a couple of weeks in Dharma, relaxing, visiting family, and helping at the first annual Book Festival. When Becky, Brooklyn's mom and head of the festival, is continually harassed and threatened by a local businessman/bully, Brooklyn and Derek are on high alert. Add into the mix a mysterious first edition of the festival's theme book, Louisa May Alcott's Little Women, and you have The Grim Reader, the latest Bibliophile Mystery by auth Brooklyn Wainwright and her husband Derek Stone are spending a couple of weeks in Dharma, relaxing, visiting family, and helping at the first annual Book Festival. When Becky, Brooklyn's mom and head of the festival, is continually harassed and threatened by a local businessman/bully, Brooklyn and Derek are on high alert. Add into the mix a mysterious first edition of the festival's theme book, Louisa May Alcott's Little Women, and you have The Grim Reader, the latest Bibliophile Mystery by author Kate Carlisle. Fun to read, with great character development, and a puzzling mystery! 5 stars!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Tamara Morning

    Title: The Grim Reader Author: Kate Carlisle Genre: Cozy Mystery Rating: 4 out of 5 This was a fun cozy mystery read. I haven’t read a single one of the Bibliophile Mystery series, which might have given this a little more depth for me, but this was a light, quick read. I never figured out who the murderer was, and I enjoyed the discovery process. And the books. I did find everything a little too fluffy bunny/sweetness and light for my taste, though. I mean, no one thinks to report the town bully—or Title: The Grim Reader Author: Kate Carlisle Genre: Cozy Mystery Rating: 4 out of 5 This was a fun cozy mystery read. I haven’t read a single one of the Bibliophile Mystery series, which might have given this a little more depth for me, but this was a light, quick read. I never figured out who the murderer was, and I enjoyed the discovery process. And the books. I did find everything a little too fluffy bunny/sweetness and light for my taste, though. I mean, no one thinks to report the town bully—or his cohorts—to the cops, even though he makes all sorts of explicit threats, including murder. This wasn’t believable to me, so it proved to be a bit of a stumbling block, but this was an enjoyable read. (Galley courtesy of Berkley in exchange for an honest review.) More reviews at Tomorrow is Another Day

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jenn

    Brooklyn and Derek are back in her hometown of Dharma in wine country for the inaugural book festival Brooklyn's mom has started. But a new player has entered the town as is determined to bully his way into the wine culture....with his boxed wine. Soon, one of the committee members turns up dead and guess who the first suspect is? Number fourteen in the Bibliophile series brings back all the crazy characters you've come to know and love, but with a new mystery. Overall, I enjoyed this one, but I Brooklyn and Derek are back in her hometown of Dharma in wine country for the inaugural book festival Brooklyn's mom has started. But a new player has entered the town as is determined to bully his way into the wine culture....with his boxed wine. Soon, one of the committee members turns up dead and guess who the first suspect is? Number fourteen in the Bibliophile series brings back all the crazy characters you've come to know and love, but with a new mystery. Overall, I enjoyed this one, but I have a few things: -The mystery here was good, but there wasn't really a lot of sleuthing going on. The story was more about the people. That's not bad, just a point. -Everyone is in awe of Brooklyn's sister's Green belt. Okay, so I know that taekwondo places are all different and some of the more old school places, you take WAY longer to earn belts. I'm not knocking that. But Brooklyn says that Green is just a few belts from black. Okay, maybe at a few places. But most places, no. And since Brooklyn is unfamiliar with this dojo (which is a Japanese word...TKD is Korean, so it should be dojang, but from a non martial arts person, I can see them saying this...however the instructor calls it that too) she should probably assume the more standard belt progress...which would put Green right in the middle between white and black. See, the number 9 is very significant in Korean culture, so there's usually 9 color belts (or 8 with #9 being black). The order is white (always first), yellow, orange (sometimes these two are switched), camo (some don't have this one, green, purple, blue (sometimes these two are switched), brown, red, then black. So, if Brooklyn knows nothing about martial arts, she'd have no reason to think Green was high up. If she knows some, she'd think that Green was in the middle. And since she doesn't know this particular TKD place, she wouldn't assume that Green is a high belt. ... Thank you for coming to my Ted talk. 🙄

  30. 5 out of 5

    Christy

    The Grim Reader is another cozy mystery from Kate Carlisle’s Bibliophile Mysteries series where the action revolves around an antique book, this time it’s Little Women. There is an upcoming book festival in Brooklyn’s home town of Dharma in California’s wine country. Her mother Becky and her mother-in-law Meg get caught up in the murder and mayhem surrounding the organization of the book festival. The mystery develops around the antique book and the various characters who are on the festival’s o The Grim Reader is another cozy mystery from Kate Carlisle’s Bibliophile Mysteries series where the action revolves around an antique book, this time it’s Little Women. There is an upcoming book festival in Brooklyn’s home town of Dharma in California’s wine country. Her mother Becky and her mother-in-law Meg get caught up in the murder and mayhem surrounding the organization of the book festival. The mystery develops around the antique book and the various characters who are on the festival’s organizing committee. For me this series is no longer about the mystery and learning about the art and science of restoring old books; it is about reconnecting with Brooklyn’s family and friends who are all included in this book. To get to read about the changes and developments affecting them is like going to a family reunion. Thank you NetGalley and Berkley Publishing Group for the ARC

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