- Series: Booklovers (Book 5)
- Mass Market Paperback: 416 pages
- Publisher: Crimeline (January 2, 2001)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0553582194
- ISBN-13: 978-0553582192
- Product Dimensions: 4.1 x 1.1 x 6.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 8 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,746,861 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Unsigned (Booklovers) Mass Market Paperback – January 2, 2001
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From Publishers Weekly
Publisher Alex Plumtree's plans to attend a book-signing by one of his most noted writers suddenly change when it is announced that the writer has been killed in a boating accident. To complicate matters, a journalist insists on having coffee with PlumtreeDostensibly to tell him that he knows something about the author's deathDbut then gunfire breaks out. When Plumtree runs outside to find out what's going on, he is certain that he spots his fianc e, whom he believed was killed recently while traveling. Over the next few daysDwhich happen to precede the Frankfurt Book FairDPlumtree receives two unsolicited bids to buy his company, and his landlord insists on taking back the building in which Plumtree's company is housed. While simultaneously managing his company and dealing with authors, staff and colleagues, Plumtree turns into super-sleuth and discovers a sinister plot by some corporate giants to take over the publishing business in England. Kaewart, author of four other Booklover's Mystery series, knows the book world well, but she has burdened this novel with too many plot elements. Further, although Plumtree is an appealing character, Kaewart does not flesh him out enough to keep readers interested. Mystery fans who work in publishing might find this novel slightly amusing but, overall, it's too muddled for most readers to enjoy.
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Praise for the Booklover's Series:
"As always, absorbing and enlightening."
"A treat for booklovers."
-- Tales From a Red Herring
Don't miss these other mysteries by Julie Kaewert:
And coming soon:
Available from Bantam Books
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Alex, the second son and inheritor of Plumtree Press, an 800 year old family owned publishing firm in London, discovers an ancient book about King Richard the Lionhearted hidden in a secret place behind books in the library of the family home.
He is also invited to an exclusive book collector's society that is having a banquet and outing the next weekend. He attends.
The first day a man is killed in a strange accident. He is shown a secret tunnel and rooms by the castle owner, Another man is killed in bed, a woman disappears and so does Alex's fiancee.
All because of the unsigned book? What secret does it contain? It seems to re-address the death of King Richard the Lionhearted, changing English History slightly, accompanied with interesting woodcuts. Why is that getting people killed and the woman Alex loves kidnapped?
Easily the best of the series, this is a book anyone interested in English history, current customs, or international intrigue will enjoy.
As in preceding stories, but particularly in this one, virtually everyone in the protagonist's publishing and bookselling world is suspect at some point. Who can Alex Plumtree trust and what information can he entrust them with? While puzzling over three suspicious offers to buy his own small, family publishing firm for a lot more than it's worth, he helps the British government save the British (or even European) publishing industry from becoming a giant monopoly. Oh yes, along the way, he also helps to preserve the integrity and ethical standards in academic research involving the study of extant manuscripts of England's famed Beowulf and of the Apocryphal book of Judith.
Kaewert always leaves loose ends and unsolved pieces of the puzzle. As I suspected, the main loose end from the previous book in the series, Untitled, was picked up in this one, that is the fate of Alex Plumtree's fiancé Sarah Townsend. She is alive and back in London after all (after being held hostage in Iraq), but her exact whereabouts and the state of their relationship is another little mystery within a mystery.
Although I have read only three of the five published in this series thus far, I find Untitled to be the most intriguing and fast paced, and therefore un-put-downable. However, I will say that with Unsigned Kaewert has made one major improvement - she has finally done a good job of making her characters believably British in the use of their expressions and terminology. Now maybe in Uncatalogued, due out next year, these strong points will be combined.
One of the most interesting parts of Kaewert's story was how even the bible was changed for political gain and control; probably many times for it is quite an influential tool. A quite thought provoking read.
Before the party, a reporter from the bookseller newspaper jokingly tells Alex that his publisher plans to have Montauge killed to boost sales. While laughing about this in a coffee shop, a bullet is shot through the window giving credence to the journalist's story. In the following days, other horrible things occur to Alex. His landlord wants Plumtree Publishing to vacate their premises within thirty days. Someone breaks into Alex's bookstore. Someone kills a Beowulf scholar along with the murder of the publisher of the dead author. Worse, yet, Alex keeps seeing glimpses of his deceased fiance. The compulsive Alex decides to make sense of everything by doing a bit of sleuthing.
Any bibliophile, fan of a good cerebral mystery, or a romantic will want to read Julie Kaewert's latest "Booklover's Mystery," UNSIGNED. Familiar characters reappear, picking up threads from earlier stories, and provide a warm and cozy sense of homecoming. The well-done mystery is finely detailed so that if a reader blinks they may miss a critical clue. Ms. Kaewert has written another winner in this entertaining series.