Mystery & Crime Book Reviews

THE BOGUS BONDSMAN by Paul Colt
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 22, 2017

"Colt's elderly male Scheherazade keeps the formulaic story—one near miss after another—moving smartly along from bank to bank. Even non-Western fans who pick this one up by mistake will be beguiled."
1878. A Pinkerton operative signs on with a rival concern just in time to catch a case that will pit him against a resourceful gang of swindlers—and one of his former Pinkerton colleagues. Read full book review >
FACIALS CAN BE FATAL by Nancy J. Cohen
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 22, 2017

"Routine poke-your-nose-where-it-doesn't-belong fare, with results as expected."
The death of a philanthropist has Florida salon owner Marla Vail tearing her hair out. Read full book review >

RUSTY PUPPY by Joe R. Lansdale
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 21, 2017

"Minor blemishes aside, this puppy tells a waggly tale the reader is happy to follow down the roughest paths."
A woman's plea to find her son's murderer sets the stage for the latest Hap and Leonard mystery. Read full book review >
THE ENGLISH AGENT by Phillip DePoy
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 21, 2017

"Fairly nonsensical but par for the course for DePoy, who writes characters from child protective workers (Cold Florida, 2016) to Christopher Marlowe as fast-talking action heroes."
Pressed into investigation in service of the queen, playwright Christopher Marlowe must learn the truth about a plot to destroy the nation. Read full book review >
DEATH OF A GHOST by M.C. Beaton
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 21, 2017

"Fans of the handsome Highlander will delight in his continuing penchant for the wrong women and his utter lack of ambition despite his superior detecting skills, which this complex case puts on handsome display."
A wily Highland police sergeant solves a case the higher-ups want covered up. Read full book review >

OLD BONES by Trudy Nan Boyce
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 21, 2017

"Dispensing with anything like conventional exposition, Boyce lunges at the caldron of Atlanta racial/sexual/institutional politics as if she can't wait to tear the lid off. Readers prepared for the deep dive will find themselves enlightened, sobered, and maybe even cautiously uplifted by the heroine's reckless courage."
A second staccato tour of Atlanta's darkest corners for rookie Detective Sarah "Salt" Alt. Read full book review >
THE MURDER OF WILLIE LINCOLN by Burt Solomon
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 21, 2017

"The book is billed as 'A John Hay Mystery,' indicating that there may be more to come. Solomon (Where They Ain't, 2000, etc.) depicts the scores of people around Lincoln with vigor and authority. His middling mystery is a passable MacGuffin for his rich historical offering."
Disturbing questions arise after the tragic death of Abraham Lincoln's beloved son, Willie. Could it possibly be…? Read full book review >
THE CROW TRAP by Ann Cleeves
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 21, 2017

"This first installment in Cleeves' Vera Stanhope series, now published in the U.S. for the first time, offers abundant evidence why the police-detective heroine, physically unattractive but extremely clever, and her meticulously plotted adventures (The Moth Catcher, 2016, etc.) have made such a splash in bookstores and in the TV series Vera."
A British environmental survey suddenly turns dangerous when several deaths occur. Read full book review >
A CAST OF VULTURES by Judith Flanders
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 21, 2017

"The highlights of the third in this marvelous and often amusing series (A Bed of Scorpions, 2016, etc.) are neighborhood characters who are a basket of enjoyables and a complex and brainy heroine."
A missing neighbor, a series of fires, and turmoil at work are just the start of Samantha Clair's problems. Read full book review >
THE DIME by Kathleen Kent
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 14, 2017

"Violent, sexy, and completely absorbing. Kent's detective is Sam Spade reincarnated—as a brilliant, modern woman."
Kent (The Outcasts, 2013, etc.) introduces a tough and engaging new detective in this police thriller set in Dallas. Read full book review >
WHERE THE LOST GIRLS GO by R.J.  Noonan
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 14, 2017

"Ham-fisted—in both the pointedly ethnic characterizations and the clearly obvious identity of the murderer—and eminently forgettable."
Officer Laura Mori's first case uncovers something sinister lurking in the bucolic woods of Oregon. Read full book review >
AUGUST SNOW by Stephen Mack  Jones
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Feb. 14, 2017

"This mostly terrific debut holds out the promise that we are at the beginning of an excellent new series."
An ex-cop comes home to Detroit and finds himself embroiled in the investigation of a local business magnate's death. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Kathleen Kent
author of THE DIME
February 20, 2017

Dallas, Texas is not for the faint of heart. Good thing for Betty Rhyzyk she's from a family of take-no-prisoners Brooklyn police detectives. But in Kathleen Kent’s new novel The Dime, her Big Apple wisdom will only get her so far when she relocates to The Big D, where Mexican drug cartels and cult leaders, deadbeat skells and society wives all battle for sunbaked turf. Betty is as tough as the best of them, but she's deeply shaken when her first investigation goes sideways. Battling a group of unruly subordinates, a persistent stalker, a formidable criminal organization, and an unsupportive girlfriend, the unbreakable Detective Betty Rhyzyk may be reaching her limit. “Violent, sexy, and completely absorbing,” our critic writes in a starred review. “Kent's detective is Sam Spade reincarnated—as a brilliant, modern woman.” View video >