Between the food, the scenery, and the felonies, what’s not to like?

THE GRANITE COAST MURDERS

Unsolved crimes and a restless policeman turn out to be excellent holiday companions in Brittany.

Commissaire Georges Dupin is on vacation. His doctor has ordered it. His girlfriend, Claire, has arranged it. Most important, his assistant, Nolwenn, is enforcing it. Two weeks of rest on the beach, that’s it. No phone calls about any dastardly deeds back in the gendarmerie in Concarneau. Inspectors Riwal and Kadeg have been instructed to answer his calls by regaling him with tales from Breton folklore. So of course Dupin’s going absolutely crazy. Despite the spectacular scenery of the Rose Coast, with towering cliffs of pink granite cascading down to a turquoise sea, despite its quaint inns with beautiful vistas, despite delicious meals each night on the spacious terrace of his hotel, he’s bored silly. Fortunately, it amuses Rosmin Bellet, proprietor of L’Île Rose, to regale his restless guest with tales of local outrages. The statue of the patron saint has been stolen from Chapelle Sainte-Ann. Someone has broken into the Gustave Eiffel House, once owned by the famous tower’s architect. A stone thrown through her window injures Deputy Viviane Rabier. Soon Dupin is sneaking out like a guilty lover to Tabac-Presse, where owner Élodie Riou fills him in on the latest gossip. Wealthy quarry owner Jérome Chastagner is suspected of financial fiddles. So is Mme. Rabier’s sworn enemy, Hugues Ellec. Then Gilbert Durand’s flighty young wife, Alizée, disappears after dinner. Vacation is soon every bit as exciting as work for Dupin, who attacks this smorgasbord of malfeasance with gusto.

Between the food, the scenery, and the felonies, what’s not to like?

Pub Date: April 20, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-2507-5306-9

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Minotaur

Review Posted Online: Jan. 27, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2021

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A compelling portrait of a marriage gone desperately sour.

THE MYSTERY OF MRS. CHRISTIE

In December 1926, mystery writer Agatha Christie really did disappear for 11 days. Was it a hoax? Or did her husband resort to foul play?

When Agatha meets Archie on a dance floor in 1912, the obscure yet handsome pilot quickly sweeps her off her feet with his daring. Archie seems smitten with her. Defying her family’s expectations, Agatha consents to marry Archie rather than her intended, the reliable yet boring Reggie Lucy. Although the war keeps them apart, straining their early marriage, Agatha finds meaningful work as a nurse and dispensary assistant, jobs that teach her a lot about poisons, knowledge that helps shape her early short stories and novels. While Agatha’s career flourishes after the war, Archie suffers setback after setback. Determined to keep her man happy, Agatha finds herself cooking elaborate meals, squelching her natural affections for their daughter (after all, Archie must always feel like the most important person in her life), and downplaying her own troubles, including her grief over her mother's death. Nonetheless, Archie grows increasingly morose. In fact, he is away from home the day Agatha disappears. By the time Detective Chief Constable Kenward arrives, Agatha has already been missing for a day. After discovering—and burning—a mysterious letter from Agatha, Archie is less than eager to help the police. His reluctance and arrogance work against him, and soon the police, the newspapers, the Christies’ staff, and even his daughter’s classmates suspect him of harming his wife. Benedict concocts a worthy mystery of her own, as chapters alternate between Archie’s negotiation of the investigation and Agatha’s recounting of their relationship. She keeps the reader guessing: Which narrator is reliable? Who is the real villain?

A compelling portrait of a marriage gone desperately sour.

Pub Date: Dec. 29, 2020

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: 288

Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark

Review Posted Online: Sept. 30, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2020

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Hitler may not live, but Heil Hitler is alive and all too well.

THE KAISER'S WEB

The rise of a neo-fascist with deep roots in the Third Reich pulls not-exactly-retired Justice Department agent Cotton Malone back for a 16th round of international intrigue.

A specter is haunting Europe. No, not the coronavirus but Theodor Pohl, an insurgent German nationalist who’s set his sights first on toppling long-serving chancellor Marie Eisenhuth, then on making the Fatherland great again—really, really great. Barely have Malone and his lover and comrade in arms Cassiopeia Vitt dusted themselves off from their leap from their mortally wounded plane in Poland on a single parachute than ex-President Danny Daniels is packing them off to Chile to investigate rumors that Adolf Hitler, Eva Braun, and Martin Bormann didn’t all die in that bunker in 1945; at least one of them escaped to South America with billions in Nazi gold. The trip to Chile produces some eye-popping revelations and whittles down the cast, but instead of settling matters for good, it propels Malone and Vitt to South Africa for further investigations among people determined to be left alone until their time has come. Meanwhile, back in Germany, the chancellor realizes that she’s being undermined by not only Pohl and his ruthless acolyte, Josef Engle, but her xenophobic husband, Kurt Eisenhuth, whose past is even more checkered than she knows. Cannily mixing historical research with florid inventions that fill in gaps and sometimes fly in the face of the available evidence, Berry presents an ominously up-to-date world whose frenzied nationalism is a direct descendant of the Thousand-Year Reich.

Hitler may not live, but Heil Hitler is alive and all too well.

Pub Date: Feb. 23, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-2501-4034-0

Page Count: 432

Publisher: Minotaur

Review Posted Online: Nov. 27, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15, 2020

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