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When a bookshop patron commits suicide, it’s his favourite store clerk who must unravel the puzzle he left behind.

'Not for the faint-hearted.' Scotsman

What do you do when the life you’ve carefully built for yourself comes apart?

Lydia Smith lives a quiet life, spent in the company of her colleagues and customers at the bookstore where she works. But when Joey Molina, a young and mysterious regular, hangs himself in the bookstore and leaves Lydia secret messages hidden in the pages of his books, her world starts to unravel.

Why did Joey do it?

What did he know?

And what does it have to do with Lydia?


With Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore, Matthew Sullivan has written – with great panache and suspense – a smart, twisty crime novel filled with compelling characters set in a world that book-lovers will adore.

Jess Walter, bestselling author of 'Beautiful Ruins'

A cleverly constructed thriller ... not for the faint-hearted.


A page-turner featuring a heroine bookseller who solves a cold case with clues from books – what is not to love?

Nina George, author of 'The Little Paris Bookshop'

This book ticked all the boxes for me: an engaging heroine, an intriguing premise, interesting characters and a plot that involved books, readers and the very darkest human passions. A fantastic, assured debut.

Elly Griffiths, author of 'Crossing Places'

There is a clever, erudite puzzle plot in this bookish mystery, along with whip-smart writing. Matthew Sullivan’s debut is stylish and entertaining.

Ellen Crosby, author of 'The Champagne Conspiracy'

Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore is a heart-pounding mystery that perfectly captures the intellect and eccentricity of the bookstore milieu.

The Gingerbread House Blog

A compelling read.

The Herald

I have been looking forward to this title for a while now and it was without doubt just as good or even better than hoped. I had such a great time reading Midnight At The Bright Ideas Bookstore and the two mysteries/puzzles that are included are both fascinating and well executed. The bookish elements are a true delight and I had a great time discovering more about Joey and Lydia, their past and their development. The writing is wonderful as well and made me fly through the pages… All in all I can highly recommend this title.

It's All About the Books Blog

A superb and eminently readable novel … an intoxicating mix of horrific murders, suicide, and the withdrawn and introspective individuals who people the Bright Ideas Book Store in Denver, Colorado.

On: Yorkshire

Deliciously twisty page turner.

Book Riot

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Formats & editions

  • Paperback


    June 18, 2018

    Windmill Books

    336 pages

    RRP $19.99

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