Thursday 13 June 2024

The Stranger in the Library (Lighthouse Library Mystery Book # 11) by Eva Gates

Outer Banks librarian Lucy is working on an art show at the library when paintings–and people–start to go missing, in this 11th Lighthouse Library mystery from national bestselling author Eva Gates.

When a traveling show of impressionist art comes to Nags Head, North Carolina, librarian Lucy and the staff at the Bodie Island Lighthouse Library are inspired to create an educational display about art history. Their launch of the display is a huge success, but the morning after, they discover that a reproduction of a famous painting has gone missing.

No one knows why anyone would bother stealing the picture is of no value–the real, priceless painting is under lock and key at the art show itself. Lucy gets an invite to the glitzy opening night for the real show, where she notices unusual tension among the show’s organizers. Then, the man scheduled to give the welcoming speech fails to arrive, and a party-goer is discovered drowned in a fish pond.

Meanwhile, Louise Jane is totally captivated by Tom Reilly, a handsome, charming art dealer lurking at the edges of the receptions on both nights. Tom slipped away from the party early, and he cannot be located by the police. Who, Lucy asks, is Tom Reilly, the shadowy figure threatening to break Louise Jane’s heart?

Something is afoot in Nags Head, and it’s up to Lucy and her friends to get to the bottom of it before it’s not just paintings being framed. (Summary via Goodreads)

The Lighthouse Library Mystery series by Eva Gates is one of my favorite and with eleven books in the series, there is a lot to love !!
The Stranger in the Library, the eleventh book, has two mysteries for main character Lucy Richardson McNeil to solve and surprisingly Police Detective Sam Watson actually asks Lucy for her help with one of them.
Lucy and her library are holding an art show on a small level while across town there is a more elaborate and expensive showing of impressionist art at the Granger House.  The show at the Granger House has brought a lot of people to Nags Head and luckily for Lucy and the library some come to their show.
Unfortunately after the first show at the library, they find an empty spot on the wall.  This spot held a picture that has been in Louise Jane's family for a long time and only has sentimental value to her family.  Then across town one of the people that traveled with the show at Granger House is found floating in a small pond on the property.  And Lucy, her cousin Josie, and Louise Jane are the ones to find him.
Detective Sam has a lot on his plate trying to find a killer.  There are a lot of factors in his way and the list of suspects aren't easy people to deal with.  And Lucy and Louise Jane have a mystery on their hands when the painting is returned but the backing has been cut....
Readers cannot help but love this series.  Reading and picturing a lighthouse with a full library, breakroom, offices, and an apartment at the very top is entertaining enough on it's own, then add the murder and library mystery and you are hooked !!!  And I haven't even mentioned the relationships and friendships throughout the book .... you will love them as well !!!  I highly recommend grabbing your copy and diving in !!!

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