"Secrets in the Stacks" By Lynn Cahoon: Review/Giveaway

Review by Kathleen Costa

Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win an ebook copy of the book and a link to purchase it.

“Welcome to the Sisterhood!”

Rarity Cole is a cancer survivor, and looking to enjoy her second chance at life. She left behind a broken engagement, took advice from her close friend Sam Aarons to move to Sedona, Arizona, and opened a bookstore appropriately named The Next Chapter. She is enjoying the slower pace, fresh air, and a renewed outlook on her post-cancer life. So, how can she use her own “next chapter” to help others with theirs? Rarity decides to create a book club, a book club designed for other cancer survivors to gather together, offer support for continued health, and read a few good books, especially mysteries.

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Image Source Lyrical Press
It’s been six months, and the book club membership has gone from one person to an on and off gathering of ten women. They vary in age, temperament, and involvement as well as what they hoped to gain from joining in. Beyond bonding over their health trials, successful recovery stories, and apprehension over visits for regular monitoring, the core group, who regularly attend every Tuesday, has bonded over murder. Not just in their particular literary choice, but real murder. When one of their members had a sad demise, the survivors’ club became a sleuthers’ club. They went into action using each other’s strengths and, despite a bit a trouble from law enforcement and the killer themselves, they were key in a final arrest. One and done. Well, that’s what they thought.

Secrets in the Stacks Earns 5/5 Shelves of Evidence…Engaging & Clever!

This year’s fall festival is going well for Rarity and her bookshop. She and her young part-time employee Darby Doyle set up a “Healing through Reading” tent with lots of books for sale and a cooling station where patrons can sit, relax, and read their purchases. Closing up for the first full day, Rarity decides to have a little fun. It’s Sedona, so with friend and local detective Drew Anderson, she heads over to get a tarot reading from her friend Carson before heading home. But, she is startled when Darby races out of the tent, crying. Carson said the Death card had been revealed, and it shook Darby who seems to have taken the incident literally worrying it could mean her aging grandmother. Then, there’s the strange gift left on her doorstep, a search for a reclusive author, a strange man popping up in town, break-ins, and a tragic death. Was it foretold by the Death card?

Cover to Cover Fun! Lynn Cahoon has created an endearing bunch of friends: strong, loyal, and realistically living with cancer from optimism to trepidation. Their bonding goes beyond just friendship and resembles more of a family; you mess with one, you mess with all! The victim was a curious surprise since I had on my karmic radar someone more bent on interfering with Rarity’s relationship with Archer. But, as Cahoon reveals the rationale for her choice thru people’s recollections, personal journals, rumors of a planned project, and a “tell me what you know” journalist, it is clear that this is one of her best murder mysteries. The victim’s philanthropic activities championing women, a valuable book collection, and possibly a link to a tragic past added to the complexity and my “couldn’t put down” enjoyment. The end? The perfect mix of peril, surprise, and relief. Lynn’s writing style is always entertaining with descriptive language depicting the environment, small town life, characters, and the mood along with dialogue that illustrates well the multi generational personalities. Clever mystery including contemporary issues. Diverse characters with strong female lead. Romance, friendship, and family. This second book has it all!

And a Recipe, too! Lynn always adds a recipe at the end along with a delightful personal story. As a late bloomer Girl Scout, she remembers helping out with a younger group and making Stone Soup. I was a Bluebird, then a Camp Fire girl, and I remember our group making Stone Soup, too. Hamburger, tomatoes, corn, beans, and a few potatoes was the perfect warm comfort food. Enjoy Rarity’s version of Hamburger Stew. Yummy memories!

Survivors’ Book Club Mystery

The Tuesday Night Survivors’ Club (2022) KRL Review HERE

Secrets in the Stack (2022)

Be a Big Fan of Lynn Cahoon!

First, a big shout out to this fellow spud, Lynn Cahoon! New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Lynn Cahoon pens the delightful Tourist Trap Mystery series which includes several novellas highlighting a particularly fun holiday or season. Along with this new Survivors' Book Club Mystery, she also writes two other popular cozy mystery series: Cat Latimer series set in small town Aspen Hills, Colorado, and my favorite the Farm-to-Fork series set in River Vista, Idaho. All of her series star strong female leads who often are dealing with life’s problems but find success through perseverance!

Facebook—Lynn Cahoon Author

Website—Lynn Cahoon

To enter to win an ebook copy of Secrets in the Stacks, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line "stacks,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen November 19, 2022.  US residents only and you must be 18 or older to enter.  If entering via comment please include your email address so we can contact you. You can read our privacy statement here if you like.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section in Kings River Life and in our mystery category here on KRL News & Reviews. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. And check out our new mystery podcast which features mystery short stories and first chapters read by local actors! A new episode goes up next week.

You can use this link to purchase the book or click here. If you have adblocker on you may not be able to see the Amazon link:
Kathleen Costa is a long-time resident of the Central Valley, and although born in Idaho, she considers herself a “California Girl.” Graduating from CSU-Sacramento, she is a 35+ year veteran teacher having taught in grades 1-8 in schools from Sacramento to Los Angeles to Stockton to Lodi. Currently Kathleen is enjoying her retirement revitalizing hobbies along with exploring writing, reading for pleasure, and spending 24/7 with her husband.
Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases. KRL also receives free copies of most of the books that it reviews, that are provided in exchange for an honest review of the book.


  1. This book is on my TBR list! Thank you for the chance to win a copy

  2. Looks like a lot of fun!

  3. We have a winner!
    Lorie Ham


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