Mystery & Crime Book Reviews

MURDER ON BRITTANY SHORES by Jean-Luc Bannalec
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 26, 2016

"Like his debut (Death in Brittany, 2015), the hero's second adventure is judicious in parceling out attention to character, setting, and, most of all, plot."
A triple murder opens a new world to Commissaire Georges Dupin of the Concarneau police. Read full book review >
BREAKING COVER by Stella Rimington
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 26, 2016

"Perhaps the most vividly plotted of Rimington's recent spy thrillers, though still less persuasive when it ventures into foreign waters than when it exposes interpersonal rivalries among staffers who are supposed to be on the same side."
Now that Vladimir Putin is flexing his muscles in the international arena, Rimington, who always has a sharp eye for contemporary headlines (Close Call, 2014, etc.), provides another dose of Cold War tension for MI5 and MI6. Read full book review >

KILLER LOOK by Linda Fairstein
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 26, 2016

"Workmanlike detection, beautiful people caught in unlovely doings, and more information than you probably needed about the heroine's endless personal traumas. Average for this long-running series."
Who does Manhattan Assistant District Attorney Alexandra Cooper find "the most heartless group of people I'd encountered in ages"? Yes, it's the remaining luminaries of the city's no-longer-thriving fashion industry, whose number has been further reduced by one. Read full book review >
LIVE AND LET GROWL by Laurien Berenson
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 26, 2016

"Adding a thoroughbred to the mix doesn't do a thing to quicken the pace of Berenson's 19th Melanie Travis canine mystery, which run like the old gray mare."
An unexpected bequest brings joy and complications for Melanie Travis (The Bark Before Christmas, 2015, etc.) and her Aunt Peg. Read full book review >
DEAD JOKER by Anne Holt
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 26, 2016

"Once again, Holt spices her procedural, whose irresistible setup isn't matched by its anticlimactic solution, with urgent news of her heroine's personal life that eventually eclipses the mystery."
The murder of the Chief Public Prosecutor's wife sends shock waves through the Oslo law enforcement community as police officers and attorneys find themselves in unexpectedly uncomfortable roles. Read full book review >

THE BAKER STREET JURORS by Michael Robertson
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 19, 2016

"Robertson, who seems to command an unlimited stream of clever ideas for recycling the Holmes legend without resuscitating the great man, outdoes himself in the most effervescent of his five Baker Street cocktails to date."
It was only a matter of time, and now it's happened at last: Sherlock Holmes gets called to jury duty. Read full book review >
OUTFOXED by David Rosenfelt
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 19, 2016

"Perhaps the weakest outing for Rosenfelt, who cuts back and forth between his ebullient hero and the nefarious criminals arrayed against him as if waiting in vain for mystery and suspense to break out. There's not even much about dogs."
Dog-loving, work-averse New Jersey attorney Andy Carpenter (Who Let the Dog Out?, 2015, etc.) is dragged back into the courtroom to defend a client who escapes from a minimum security prison hours after hearing that he'll certainly be paroled. Read full book review >
THE MONSTER'S DAUGHTER by Michelle Pretorius
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 19, 2016

"A promising effort that gets buried under the weight of the past."
A young police officer in modern South Africa investigates a murder with deep roots in the past in Pretorius' debut mystery. Read full book review >
DARK ROAD HOME by Anna Carlisle
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 12, 2016

"Though Carlisle's series debut is a bit too pat to hit the mark, there's room for her writing to grow even if the same can't be said for her characters."
A medical examiner returns to her small-town home to investigate the death of her sister, a task as personally as professionally demanding. Read full book review >
MEDEA'S CURSE  by Anne Buist
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 12, 2016

"Overplotted and overdramatic; Buist's heroine never seems to have a normal half-hour. But readers who aren't put off by the unsparing accounts of women placed in extremis by themselves or wicked men will cheer the arrival of an authentic dragon slayer."
Australian mental health specialist Buist's first novel features (wait for it) an Australian mental health specialist whose caseload, it's to be hoped, is a lot more volatile than her author's. Read full book review >
THE INNOCENTS  by Ace Atkins
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 12, 2016

"The rough-and-tumble relationship between two tough-as-nails law officers and the place they love provides plenty of action, well-developed characters, and an ending that will more likely leave you disgusted than surprised."
Even snakes are straighter than many of the denizens of Tibbehah County, Mississippi. Read full book review >
ARSENIC WITH AUSTEN by Katherine Bolger Hyde
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 12, 2016

"Although first-time novelist Hyde's middle-aged heroine has wretched instincts about whom to trust, she and her lost-and-found lover make an amiable team."
A legacy turns deadly in a series debut. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Morgan Matson
July 25, 2016

The Unexpected Everything is a YA feel-good story of friendship, finding yourself, and all the joys in life that happen while you’re busy making other plans. Andie has a plan. And she always sticks to her plan. Future? A top-tier medical school. Dad? Avoid him as much as possible (which isn’t that hard considering he’s a Congressman and he’s never around). Friends? Palmer, Bri, and Toby—pretty much the most awesome people on the planet, who needs anyone else? Relationships? No one’s worth more than three weeks. So it’s no surprise that Andie’s got her summer all planned out too. Until a political scandal costs Andie her summer pre-med internship, and lands both she and Dad back in the same house together for the first time in years. Suddenly she’s doing things that aren’t Andie at all. “Romance fans will find plenty to enjoy, as Andie gradually lets down her guard and risks the messy and unpredictable wonder of first love,” our reviewer writes. “A novel best read on a lazy summer day with sand between the toes.” View video >