Bookman Dead Style
Paige Shelton     

Genre: Cozy Mystery
Series: A Dangerous Type Mystery
Book: 2

A movie star is typecast as a killer in the second Dangerous Type Mystery from the New York Times bestselling author of To Helvetica and Back.
It’s January, and the Star City Film Festival has taken the Utah ski resort town by storm. Movie stars are everywhere, carving fresh powder on the slopes and crossing the thresholds of Bygone Alley’s charming boutique shops—including The Rescued Word, where Clare Henry and her grandfather restore old typewriters and beloved books. When cinema’s hottest superhero, Matt Bane, enters their store to buy some personalized notecards, it’s hard not to be starstruck.
But when Clare sees the police leading Matt out of The Fountain hotel in handcuffs only a few hours later, she can’t believe her eyes. The affable actor is accused of killing his sister, but Clare’s convinced he’s wrong for that role. Now it’s open call for suspects as Clare tries to reel in the killer before another victim fades to black...

Things get more exiting in the small town of Star City, Utah when the annual Star City Film Festival comes to town. Even down-to-earth Clare Henry, who helps her grandfather Chester run The Rescued Word, restoring old books and typewriters, isn’t immune to being in awe of their celebrity visitors. Although happily dating her scientist boyfriend Seth, she has an instant, platonic connection to Matt Bane, one of the visiting movie stars. Soon, at the handsome actor’s request, Clare finds herself in the middle of a murder investigation as she tries to prove that Matt is innocent of killing his sister.

This is the second book in the Dangerous Type Mysteries. The first book gives details on how Clare and her best friend Jodie each met their boyfriends, but it’s not necessary to have read that book to enjoy the latest in the series. This book has some great moments, but there are parts that seem to drag where there is no progress being made at all in the investigation. Clare’s friend Jodie is a police officer, so the times they work together and share information are interesting, but sometimes Clare seems to be going in circles. There are also a few too many varied subplots going on, from typewriter ribbon tins full of cash, to local sister wives, to a group of German visitors to Chester and Clare’s shop. Some of these things to end up tying into the main plot, but others just slow the pace of the investigation even more.

I like Clare as a main character and it’s great that she has good relationships with her friends, her boyfriend Seth, and her family, including her grandfather Chester and her brother and his daughter. The small-town Utah setting is interesting and the film festival provides an excellent way to introduce new characters and provides a unique motive for murder. However, I have a hard time accepting that a popular movie star in town for the first time, would have nobody to turn for help except Clare, who he just met. Since this is a major part of the plot, I kept shaking my head as Matt waited in jail for Clare to help him. Putting disbelief in this part of the plot aside, I like Clare and enjoyed the story as a whole. The book picks up towards the end, and it’s fun to see the main characters included in a glamorous Hollywood-type party. Fans of Shelton’s other series or fans of Sheila Connelly or Lorna Barrett will enjoy this book.

~ Christine