About The Book of Secrets

Helena Davies just wants a job that will get her out of her parents’ basement. Abernathy’s Bookstore is disorganized, out of the way, and smells funny, but it pays well and promises to at least be interesting. She has no idea how interesting her life will become. By the end of the first day, Helena has a dead boss in the basement, an unexpected promotion, and the news that she is now a part of an endless war against creatures from another reality.

As Abernathy’s newest custodian, Helena is responsible for its secrets, including the most important one: Abernathy’s isn’t just a bookstore. It’s the world’s only living oracle, producing prophecies to help fight the war against alien invaders bent on draining this world of its magic. Helena’s job is to find books to answer questions put to the oracle by the Wardens, fighters in the Long War. It seems simple enough, but Helena’s new job is anything but.

She has allies: her best friend Viv, from whom she has no secrets; Harry and Harriet Keller, elderly magi skilled at uncovering secrets; and the enigmatic Malcolm Campbell, warrior magus and one of the few who have faith in Helena’s abilities. But not everyone is thrilled that an outsider now has charge of one of the world’s most powerful magical entities. Helena must defend herself against the antagonism of Judy Rasmussen, who’d expected to be the next custodian of Abernathy’s, and her father William, powerful leader of the Wardens and someone with an agenda of his own.

Without training, without any knowledge of the magical world, and facing the hostility of those who’d wanted someone else to be Abernathy’s custodian, Helena must navigate the treacherous waters of her new world and find a place for herself within it. But there’s still a murderer on the loose, someone who intended to control Abernathy’s by killing its custodian—and Helena might be next on his list.

Reviews for The Book of Secrets

Melissa McShane writes stories that really make it hard to put down my Kindle. This one follows a girl (and she felt like a girl) who inherits a magic bookstore that introduces her to a magical world. Throughout the book she has to deal with creatures trying to kill her and deciding whether she really wants to work in the bookstore. The magic world was interesting but there were times when there was too much information thrown at me. I liked most of the characters except her best friend Viv. She was too immature and made the main character too [...]

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The Book of Secrets is the first book in a new series by Melissa McShane. Though the author's more widely known as a historical fantasy writer, this new series is a departure, since it's more of a light urban fantasy with cozy mystery. The protagonist is a hapless 21 year old who lands a job at an antiquarian bookshop and is thrust into an unknown world when her boss gets murdered whilst she's on the premises and she begins to find out that the bookstore is emphatically not your average bookstore.

I especially enjoyed the characters in the book as [...]

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There are many ways to tackle a conflict, some more ethical than others. THE BOOK OF SECRETS presents a war against creatures from another dimension, two factions with their own ideas on how to win the war, and a young woman stuck in the middle, quite suddenly. It’s tons of fun, but it left me with lots of questions.

I love heroines who are willing to take a few days to freak the hell out. Finding your new boss dead is not normal, and neither is being a neutral party between two factions of demon hunters. I appreciate that the author [...]

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This is a great read for young and old alike. Helena is hired to work in a bookstore and finds her new boss dead her first day at work. She discovers it's no ordinary bookstore and is now the new manager in a portal against evil. The story gets a little violent but not enough to keep teen readers away. As friends, magi and magicians step in to help keep the store safe, Helena discovers she likes this un-normal situation she was chosen for. This is book 1 in the Last Oracle series and prepares Helena [...]

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