Before I leave for another short vacation (this one to visit family), I thought I'd review one of the books I read in Maui. I found this one on the mystery book shelf at my local independent book store. It had a glowing recommendation from a store employee as well as from another independent book store. In case you can't tell, I'm a big fan of my local bookstore. They have some wonderful author events.
Anyway, this is apparently the first book in a mystery series. It is about Israel Armstrong who is the new librarian in a small town in Northern Ireland. The premise revolves around the fact that the town has closed the local library and put Israel in charge of a mobile library.
Strengths of The Case of the Missing Books: I loved the characters. They are quirky and funny. Israel is your "fish out of water" character, but the author uses a great deal of humor in describing the people and setting. I'm guessing the author spent so much time with some of the characters because he plans to explore them more in future books. I haven't found another one, but I'm assuming there is one. I was a little worried about it being set in Northern Ireland because I wasn't in the mood for anything too political, but that's not what this is. It's more like a humorous slice of life setting.
Weaknesses of The Case of the Missing Books: The mystery element was a bit weak. I didn't really care who had the missing library books (and it was kind of far-fetched that every book in the library had gone missing). I enjoyed the characters and humor enough to overlook this. If you like to follow along with the clues and a traditional detective, then this is not for you.
Overall, I enjoyed the book for its humor and will probably read more in the series.