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Plaid and Plagiarism

(Highland Bookshop Mystery #1)

3.18  ·  Rating details ·  1,894 ratings  ·  410 reviews
A murder in a garden turns the four new owners of Yon Bonnie Books into amateur detectives, in a captivating new cozy mystery novel from Molly MacRae.

Set in the weeks before the annual Inversgail Literature Festival in Scotland, Plaid and Plagiarism begins on a morning shortly after the four women take possession of their bookshop in the Highlands. Unfortunately, the move
Hardcover, 279 pages
Published December 6th 2016 by Pegasus Books
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Elizabeth "Set in the weeks before the annual Inversgail Literature Festival in Scotland, Plaid and Plagiarism begins on a morning shortly after the four women …more"Set in the weeks before the annual Inversgail Literature Festival in Scotland, Plaid and Plagiarism begins on a morning shortly after the four women take possession of their bookshop in the Highlands. Unfortunately, the move to Inversgail hasn’t gone as smoothly as they’d planned.

First, Janet Marsh is told she’ll have to wait before moving into her new home. Then she finds out the house has been vandalized. Again. The chief suspect? Una Graham, an advice columnist for the local paper—who’s trying to make a name for herself as an investigative reporter. When Janet and her business partners go looking for clues at the house, they find a body—it’s Una, in the garden shed, with a sickle in her neck. Janet never did like that garden shed.

Who wanted Una dead? After discovering a cache of nasty letters, Janet and her friends are beginning to wonder who didn’t, including Janet’s ex-husband. Surrounded by a cast of characters with whom readers will fall in love, the new owners of Yon Bonnie Books set out to solve Una’s murder so they can get back to business."

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Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
As this is a cozy mystery book there are lots of eccentric people and lots of humor, at least it tries to be humorous. However, I did find it hard to really enjoy PLAID AND PLAGIARISM. Despite the bookstore and all. Sure, there were moments that I enjoyed, a man and his dog that kept on disappearing throughout the book. One minute there, the next gone. The old lady that just showed up one day in the bookstore, not saying a word, just sitting there knitting. But, the mystery just never really got ...more
Nov 03, 2016 rated it liked it
The checklist I use when I'm composing a book review includes how reluctant I am to shut down my Kindle when other duties call - and on the other end, how eager I am to start reading it again. On that score, this one falls a bit short. It's certainly not a bad story, but I just couldn't work up much enthusiasm for it.

Honestly, I'm not sure why. Admittedly I'll never be a huge fan of "cozy" mysteries, but I do enjoy them now and again. I love books and bookstores (one of my favorite series is Law
Nov 26, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the first in The Highland Bookshop Mystery Series. Janet Marsh and Christine Robertson are close friends, who have brought a bookshop named ‘Yon Bonnie Books’ in the small town of Inversgail. As the name of the bookshop suggests, Inversgail is popular with tourists and American, Janet Marsh, and her ex-husband Curtis, had a house which they visited every summer. Meanwhile, Christine was born in Inversgail, before emigrating to live in the States. Now, Christine is widowed and Janet divor ...more
Primrose Jess
Feb 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
A charming new cozy mystery series. I can only hope when I am in my retirement years I will have three ladies in my life I can open a book shop with. Minus the dead body with a scythe to the neck in my garden shed.

My Reactions:
-I pretty much have been on streak enjoying any book set in Scotland.
-The cast of characters are diverse, eccentric, with few that could be considered "bat poo" crazy. Absolutely loved them all.
-While reading, I was struck with an inexplicable urge to eat a lemon scone
Melissa ♥ Melissa's Eclectic Bookshelf
I wanted to love this one so much! Scotland! American transplants opening a bookshop! Did I mention Scotland?? Sadly this just did not capture my interest at all. The pacing was remarkably slow and the lead up to the mystery just seemed so ridiculous that I couldn't even continue. This went beyond cozy to silly. ...more
Dawn Michelle
This started off in a bad way for me - there was a lot of crankiness and bickering and I was not amused with that banter and almost gave up on it, but decided to hang on and I am glad I did. The banter smoothed out after a few chapters and I started liking the characters and the mystery intrigued me. And the end was not really a surprise, but has some surprising elements. I am looking forward to the next one.
Jan 28, 2017 rated it it was ok
This was a disappointing read. I really hated the main character, Janet, but maybe it was because there wasn't much character development and none of them really stuck out. There didn't seem to be transitions in the book; one minute the character's are talking to someone, then without warning, they're somewhere else, or talking to someone else, or solving the mystery randomly and all of the sudden. I think a better editor was in order for this book. I had high hopes, but it just didn't work for ...more
Aug 18, 2016 rated it did not like it
Shelves: cosy-romance
This book was meh. It really couldn't get into it! So many characters were introduced very quickly, I felt like this was a book further into a series as opposed to a new book. Plus most of the characters were so similar I couldn't tell them apart. DNF

I received this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
May 27, 2017 rated it liked it
Pretty good mystery. I loved all the Scottish stuff even if some of the idioms left me confused. So, that part was educational.
But the mystery itself was a bit drawn out.
Jan 10, 2017 rated it liked it
Originally posted at Desert Island Book Reviews

Plaid and Plagiarism is a cozy mystery set in Inversgail, Scotland. It’s centered around a group of four women who have decided to partner up and run a bookshop, tearoom, and bed and breakfast (though only the bookshop is running in this book). They’re thrust into the middle of a murder investigation and decide to try a little sleuthing of their own to get to the bottom of whodunnit.

Like most cozy mysteries, the pacing was a little slower than I’d h
Jul 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Woohoo -- a new-to-me cozy mystery series to tickle my funny bone and challenge my armchair sleuthing skills! And it's set in a book shop in Scotland! With a retired librarian heroine! I'm all agog over the bookiliciousness of it all!

This is a really smart murder mystery. Loved the diverse skills the four friends bring to the table -- Janet, the retired librarian, her daughter, Tally a former lawyer, and friends Christine (retired social worker) and Summer (a journalist taking a sabbatical from
Mar 12, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: murder-mystery
Plaid and Plagiarism is the first in a new series, and a get acquainted sort of read that introduces the reader to the characters and the environs that will make up the milieux of the Highland Bookshop Mysteries .

This book harks back to one of my favorite TV detectives, Columbo, in that the sex, violence, and evil side of human nature that comprise any entertaining fictional murder all manifest themselves firmly off-screen . Our stalwart protagonists [ostensibly in sensible shoes] engage in onl
Nov 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
The Scottish highlands, a bookshop and a murder sounds like a good start for an enjoyable read! Add in some humour, a cast of eccentric characters and Molly MacRae has the beginnings of a cozy series.
A solid read for a cozy mystery!
Julie Fetcho
Dec 20, 2020 rated it really liked it
Good book. But slow going but steady read. There were several mysteries going on besides who the killer was.
Summer is coming and that means that I feel like breaking out some cozy mystery books. So I started with Plaid and Plagiarism by Molly MacRae that I got as a birthday present. Let me summarise my thoughts and feelings here.

The story is set in a little Scottish town, Inversgail, just around the time of the annual Literature Festival. We have a little bookshop, Yon Bonnie Books, and its four owners: Janet and her daughter, Tallie, Janet's school friend, Christine, and Tallie's friend, Summer. Chri
Judy Lesley
I received an e-ARC of this novel through NetGalley and Pegasus Books.

This opening book in the Highland Bookshop mystery series was a pleasant reading experience. Building the foundation of a series around four women being joint partners in a business meant there had to be a lot of attention paid to establishing four individuals as principals in the story line. This became just a little crowded at times, especially since the author then had to add in all the additional characters to make this ep
Jan 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: obs
What a delightful, exciting start to this new series by Molly MacRae! The characters - a retired social worker, a retired librarian and her attorney-turned-bookseller daughter, and daughter's friend relocate across the pond to Scotland. The descriptions of the Highlands, the little town they live in, and the characters are excellent.

The four ladies are well-rounded, educated yet down to earth. I can find at least one characteristic in each one to identify with. All have relocated and joined in
This is just what it looks like it will be, an easy reading, cozy mystery. Better than the average cozy mystery. The writing is very good. The characters are interesting; there are four women of various ages and backgrounds making a new start by buying a bookshop and opening a tea store next door. The mystery was where it fell short for me. The village is one of those villages where all the shops sound delightful and all the people sound too perfect and you can't wait to start hearing about ever ...more
Kate Baxter
Charming cozy mystery set on the coastal edge of the Scottish Highlands. Four women of two generations throw in their U.S. towel, pool their funds and purchase an established Scottish bookshop. Three of this team are American and the 4th is returning to her native home to keep an eye on and assist her aging folks. Divorcée and former librarian, Janet, wrangled ownership of a sweet Scottish cottage from her ex-husband during the settlement. She would welcome the opportunity to settle into that co ...more
Rima Aiello
Sep 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I adore a good mystery and this book had it all. Janet Marsh and company pick up roots and move to Scotland to purchase a bookstore and start over after life changes. All four women have huge dreams for their new business, but a huge part depends on Janet being able to move into her home that was previously occupied by renters. This of course does not go smoothly or as planned, then is put on hold even longer by a murder being committed on the property.
I am finding it so hard to write a non spo
Jeannie and Louis Rigod
The first word that comes to my mind reading this new murder mystery series...humor. I found humor throughout the entirety of this novel. The first novel is always difficult as the Author has to introduce the characters, the locations, the plot of the murder and a correct balance between all factors.

Four women move back to Scotland and open a joint bookshop, Bed and Breakfast. and tea shop. The women are related but also have a joint purpose in having second lives. The women will draw you into t
Mar 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
To think I almost passed this book over because of low reviews! I should know better. I loved this book and the smart characters. I wish I could jump into this book and live in the town :) gentle, subtle humor (not slapstick which I appreciated!) reminded me of Alexander McCall smith's writing and that's a wonderful thing!! ...more
Sep 07, 2018 rated it it was ok
It was a bit hard to get into this book and it sort of just dragged on and on. It was a clean read though but an obvious outcome.
Nov 29, 2017 rated it liked it
My thoughts on this book can be summed up in a single sentence: I wish I would have enjoyed it more. It had so many elements for me to love (bookshop, Scotland), and I even found myself fond of the characters, I guess I just didn't connect with the story.

From the beginning, I kept having to doublecheck that this was, indeed, the first book in the series & not a subsequent one. I think that was because of the fact that the characters weren't distinctly introduced; I felt like I should already kn
Feb 24, 2018 rated it liked it
Actually would be 3.5 stars if possible. Good start to a new series. Janet, her daughter and two friends decide to relocate to Scotland, buy a bookstore and start a new life after Janet's "rat of a husband" leaves. They meet a host of townspeople with quirks and feelings toward outsiders. But when one of them winds up murdered in Janet's shed, the hunt is on for the killer. Some of the characters were not fleshed out as well as I would have liked, but that may happen in the next book. Cozy read! ...more
Book Concierge
Digital audiobook performed by Elaine Claxton

Four women take possession of their new bookshop, Yon Bonnie Books, in the Highlands of Scotland. They are: Janet Marsh, a newly divorced woman; her good friend Christine, a retired social worker; Janet’s daughter Tallie, who’s given up her career to move to Scotland with her mother; and Summer Jacobs, Tallie’s good friend. Unfortunately, the move to Inversgail has hit a snag. Before she can move in, Janet discovers her house has been vandalized, and
Westminster Library
Feb 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction, debbra, mystery
An interesting mix of characters left me wondering who the murderer would
be in this quaint town. Four ladies decide to take their "what if" game a
little further by moving overseas and purchasing a bookshop/tea room/B&B
combo. If only two of ladies could move into their former vacation home,
life would be evening out. Since the police are moving slowly on the case,
the ladies feel the only way to get their home released is to aid the
police in solving the murder.

Find Plaid and Plagiarism at Westminst
Nov 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this charming cozy mystery set in a small town in the Scottish Highlands.
MacRae falls into the trap of making her characters' dialogue always clever and articulate, often at the expense of reality and sometimes meaning.
But this is a light, fun read and makes you want to buy a bookstore in the Scottish Highlands!
Linda Power
Dec 14, 2020 rated it it was ok
This should have been a good light read. The characters were there, but the story line did not get off the ground.
Feb 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Plaid and Plagiarism by Molly MacRae features four women who have relocated from Iowa to purchase and run a bookstore in Inversgail, Scotland. Upon arriving, Janet goes to move into the house she has owned there for 30 years, only to find the kitchen filled with disgusting, rotting garbage and the estate agent standing in the middle. With the house uninhabitable until it can be thoroughly cleaned, Janet and her daughter Tallie return a few days later with Janet's best friend, Christine, who grew ...more
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Molly MacRae spent twenty years in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains of Upper East Tennessee, where she managed The Book Place, an independent bookstore; may it rest in peace.

Before the lure of books hooked her, she was curator of the history museum in Jonesborough, Tennessee’s oldest town.

MacRae lives with her family in Champaign, Illinois, where she connects children with books at the

Other books in the series

Highland Bookshop Mystery (4 books)
  • Scones and Scoundrels (Highland Bookshop Mystery #2)
  • Thistles and Thieves (Highland Bookshop Mystery #3)
  • Heather and Homicide: The Highland Bookshop Mystery Series: Book 4

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