Thursday, June 16, 2016

Berckman, Evelyn. The Fourth Man on the Rope (New York: Dell, 1973) 224 p.
Lovely, vulnerable, Alison Pendrell comes to the Champernowne Library (a private research library on the coast of Kent) to catalogue a large bequest of family papers. There she meets her old school friend Myra MacKinnon, who is an assistant librarian. The only official duty we find Myra involved in is "going over a stack of returns" and complaining about people using hairs as bookmarks. The Library Director is Thomas Durant, most of whose time seems to be spent sorting out domestic difficulties. The beautiful seventeenth-century library is described on p. 31-36. Later in the story it comes out that the large basement provides secret hiding places for several staff members.

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