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Friday, December 4, 2015

Whispers in The Reading Room

"He had returned.

Lydia Bancroft peeked over the stack of books she was cataloging, trying her best to see what new book her favorite patron was reading that afternoon.

For the past year, the debonair man had come into the reading room several times a week. And for the last three months, he'd sat in his favorite chair in the corner and kept his nose in a series of books detailing the adventures of Lewis and Clark.

She still remembered the expression on his face last week when he'd finished and closed the last tome. He'd looked pleased and just a bit melancholy. She knew those dual feelings well- the satisfaction of completing a well-written piece of litereature while also coming to terms with the fact that those few moments of pure bliss would be replaced with a longing for more.

That was when she realized they were kindred spirits, even though she had no business observing him so intently. At long last, she was an engaged woman, and though Jason had never stepped foot in here, if he did, he undoubtedly would not appreciate the sight of her gazing upon another man.

But it seemed she couldn't help herself." (pg 2)

This passage from Whispers in the Reading Room by Shelley Gray was what hooked me in her latest novel. This is how I feel whenever I read an exceptionally well written novel. It is both a happy moment and also a bittersweet one, because they always come too soon. This is the third novel in the Chicago World's Fair Mystery Series, that I am glad I got the opportunity to read, but failed to catch the first two, something I plan on correcting!

As most of you know, Shelley Gray for me, was an author I often associated with her Amish romance novels, but let me tell you, she can master murder mystery with a historical flair that is beyond what I can accurately capture in this review. The only thing I can say is pick this one up of you love a flair for a bit of romance with your historical murder mysteries!

Lydia Bancroft has fallen on hard financial times living in the late 1800s in Chicago! With the recent death of her father, they have had to sell of valuable pieces of art and furnishings to stay afloat. Now their own member of the household staff that remains is the cook and the only way they have been able to manage is thanks to Lydia's income at the Reading Room. Her mother has been keeping up appearances in an effort she can find someone to marry Lydia and relieve them from this burden. She has hopes that Jason Avondale will be the one.

Lydia knows that everything for her future and her mother's rests on her ability to maintain the level of social class that Jason expects. She is drawn to a mysterious man who frequents the reading room, but never speaks or socializes with anyone. He never even checks the books out, but picks up where he leaves off from his last visit. She is hoping she can find someway  to speak with him and perhaps find out why she is so drawn to him. She is torn between her feelings for this man she has never met and the life she lives outside of the library. If only there was another way to secure their future besides marriage. After all, who would marry someone like her, they haven't up to this point, so perhaps she should be content with what they have with her proposal from Jason. After all, a man like that can only lead to trouble right?

I received Whispers in the Reading Room from Shelley Gray compliments of Thomas Nelson Publishers and Litfuse Publicity for my honest review. I did not receive any monetary compensation, aside from a free copy of this novel, in exchange for my honest review. I was so captivated by this novel, I inhaled it in one sitting. It was that great! Now I intend to go back and read the previous two novels in the series as well. This would be perfect for anyone who loves murder mysteries with a flair for historical accuracy and romance woven in between to create a best selling novel in my opinion and well worth all 5 out of 5 stars.

For more information about Whispers in the Reading Room, Shelly Gray or where you can pick up a copy of this novel today, please click on the links below:

You can find Shelley Gray on Facebook to stay up to date on all her latest novels.

To read more reviews on Whispers in the Reading Room, please visit Litfuse Publicity's Book Tour Page. 

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