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The Stolen Letter    by Paige Shelton order for
Stolen Letter
by Paige Shelton
Order:  USA  Can
Minotaur, 2020 (2020)
Hardcover, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

The Stolen Letter follows The Loch Ness Papers as the fifth in Paige Shelton's delightful Scottish Bookshop cozy mystery series. Its star is American Delaney Nichols, who's employed at the Cracked Spine bookstore in Edinburgh, and married to picture-perfect Scotsman Tom Shannon, who owns a pub.

This episode opens on Delaney's return from her honeymoon with Tom. On her way to the bookshop, Delaney encounters an older woman, Mary Stewart, with an uncanny resemblance to herself. Mary claims to have been Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots, in a past life, and tells Delaney they were destined to meet. Mary invites Delaney and Tom for dinner.

Before that, Delaney is dismayed to learn that the bookshop is about to shut down, because of issues with building codes. The matter is to be decided shortly by the City Council. Delaney is asked to search the bookshop for Burgess Tickets, that might help them stop the closure. They plan to fight till the end.

The day after the dinner, a car bomb disrupts city life, and Mary's husband (a councilor behind the bookshop closure) was the target. Naturally, Delaney is motivated to solve the murder and save the bookshop. Along the way, readers again enjoy Scottish history, the streets of Edinburgh, and Scottish slang. Great fun as always.

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