Books by Todd Borg

TAHOE DEEP by Todd Borg
Released: Sept. 25, 2019

"A superior entry—and hopefully not the last—in a long-running mystery/thriller series."
Silent about an apparent murder for eight decades, an elderly man finds the past has violently caught up with him. Read full book review >
Released: Aug. 6, 2018

"Another impressive case featuring a detective who remains not only dogged, but also reflective."
This 16th installment of a series brings back a thinking-person's private investigator in a tale that delivers the unlikely combination of robotics innovation and gender identity. Read full book review >
Released: Aug. 1, 2017

"A worthy addition to a well-devised mystery/thriller series."
A California private investigator and his Great Dane explore the seamy underside of charities. Read full book review >
Tahoe Dark by Todd Borg
Released: Aug. 1, 2016

"Once again, Borg hits all the right notes for fans of classic detective fiction in the mold of Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler, Ross Macdonald, and Robert B. Parker."
A Tahoe, California-based private detective investigates a kidnapping and an armored-car heist and discovers a surprising link between the two in Borg's (Tahoe Blue Fire, 2015, etc.) 14th series thriller.Read full book review >
Tahoe Blue Fire by Todd Borg
Released: Aug. 1, 2015

"Another satisfying detective novel from Borg, featuring a hero who walks confidently in the footsteps of Sam Spade, Philip Marlowe, and Lew Archer."
In Borg's (Tahoe Ghost Boat, 2014) latest series mystery, Nevada private detective Owen McKenna investigates the death of a client and uncovers a mystery that goes back 500 years. Read full book review >
Released: Aug. 1, 2014

A Tahoe-based private detective gets more than he bargained for when he is hired to locate a missing 15-year-old girl.
In the latest adventure in his Tahoe mystery series, private detective Owen McKenna is hired by Nadia Lassitor, whose second husband, Ian Lassitor, has just died in a boating accident, to find out who is blackmailing her. In the course of his investigation, McKenna meets Nadia's 15-year-old daughter, Gertie O'Leary, who has a cleft lip and an infectious personality. She tells the PI that she wants to become a movie director. Then, Gertie goes missing, and McKenna is almost drowned while searching for her. He locates the girl and has to rescue her from Mikhailo, a Russian killer who, for some unknown reason, will go to any lengths to get his hands on her, which forces McKenna to repeatedly place his life in jeopardy to protect Gertie. McKenna becomes the teen's unlikely savior along with McKenna's girlfriend, etymologist Street Casey. In a surprising development, it turns out that a chest full of gold coins that's been lying on the floor of Lake Tahoe since 1901 is also involved in the case. The author takes a page from Ross Macdonald, whose PI hero, Lew Archer, was always getting involved with lost or missing children. Borg writes with some of the old pulp savvy of Macdonald and his detective-novel cohorts, but he might benefit from the economy of Robert B. Parker, whose Spenser for Hire also sometimes came to the aid of troubled youths. Borg's story is filled with suspenseful set pieces, and there is a real surprise at the end of the novel. And Gertie herself makes for a charming damsel in distress even though there are times when she sounds more adult than teenager.
Fans of the classic detective novel will enjoy spending time with McKenna as his old-school techniques butt up against some newfangled technology.
Read full book review >
TAHOE CHASE by Todd Borg
Released: Aug. 1, 2013

"A worthy follow-up in the long, enjoyable series of McKenna mysteries."
In Borg's (Tahoe Trap, 2012) latest thriller, Owen McKenna is back in action trying to solve the murder of an elderly woman. Read full book review >
TAHOE NIGHT by Todd Borg
Released: Aug. 1, 2009

"An action-packed thriller with a nice-guy hero, an even nicer dog and some worthwhile advice based on meticulous research explaining how to forge and frame an Old Master."
A Lake Tahoe shamus and his harlequin Great Dane sniff out fake Rembrandts. Read full book review >
Released: Aug. 1, 2002

"Mischief and quirky characters keep the tale afloat. The plot has few surprises, but Owen, a wry, courtly sleuth of the old school, consistently entertains."
Baffling clues impede a police probe of the murder of athletic young Thos Kahale, a Lake Tahoe transplant. Wearing only a pair of skis and clutching a suicide note, the Hawaiian native is found shot in the back of the head on a snowy mountain, leaving his Native American mother Janeen to raise his chronically shy son Phillip alone. Suspecting police incompetence (and maybe a little racism), Janeen hires smooth Tahoe shamus Owen McKenna (Tahoe Death Fall, 2001, etc.). It's a natural choice, since Owen's galumphing Great Dane Spot soon succeeds in bringing Phillip a little out of his shell. After Owen learns that two of Thos's relatives have died recently under suspicious circumstances, he flies to Hawaii with gal pal Street Casey to investigate a secret shrine, reportedly the hiding place of such treasured Kahale possessions as a rare manuscript by Mark Twain—an obvious target for the killer. Though Thos's brother John agrees to fly the duo to the site in his helicopter, the trip is incomplete: While en route, a stick-flinging mystery man triggers a crash, seriously injuring Owen and Street and killing John. The perp is Ole Knudson, a ubiquitous Swede with long blond hair and a bushy beard who Owen nicknames "The Viking." Corpses continue to pile up before Owen catches his prey and unravels the mystery of the suicide note Thos left. Read full book review >
Released: Sept. 1, 2001

Some people just can't stay out of trouble. Only a month after he tangled with a decades-old murder in Tahoe Deathfall (p. 773), Lake Tahoe detective Owen McKenna is back to battle a murderous arsonist who first sets a fire that nearly claims Owen's home, and then—once Owen's been hired to investigate—kidnaps his ladylove, forensic entomologist Street Casey, and feeling Owen's breath on his neck, taunts him about the blaze he's about to set, destroying hundreds of houses, one of them Street's prison. Read full book review >
Released: Aug. 1, 2001

"Easygoing, self-confident Owen provides the perfect counterpoint to the menacing forces arrayed against his teenaged client—though there aren't that many suspects, they're all guilty as sin—in Borg's practiced debut."
Eight years ago, Jennifer Salazar's twin sister Melissa fell to her death during a birthday hike on Maggie's Peaks. Now Jennifer, who's always been convinced Melissa's death was no accident, wants Lake Tahoe shamus Owen McKenna to look into the case. The only problem is that Jennifer is only 14, not even old enough to sign a contract with Owen, and since her father is dead and her schizophrenic mother Alicia institutionalized, her legal guardian is her hyperprotective grandmother, Roberta Salazar, who's so set against Owen that she threatens him with a restraining order and kneecapping. No problem, Owen tells Jennifer; though he can't take her on as a paying client, he can look into her sister's death as a friend. And indeed most things seem to come easy to Owen, a rangy, can-do ex-cop who has two attractive women fighting over him, a monstrous Great Dane named Spot who routinely brings would-be predators to their knees, and so many friends in law enforcement that they outnumber the forgettable, telemovie suspects. Eventually, Owen's investigations into the Salazar family secrets give him the idea of busting Alicia out of the high-security private sanitarium where she's immured, and the thrilling, extended rescue/chase sequence that ensues gives him a chance, finally, to do something hard. Read full book review >