Mystery & Crime Book Reviews

DEATH IN THE ABSTRACT by Emily Barnes
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 16, 2017

"The second case for Barnes' heroine uses a relatively simple mystery to showcase the many talents of a tough and resilient woman."
A retired police chief uses her skills to help out an old friend in trouble. Read full book review >
THE SECOND DAY OF THE RENAISSANCE by Timothy Williams
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 16, 2017

"There's some confusion in the piecemeal mosaic of complex episodes and speculations from Trotti's past, but it's hard to resist Williams (Big Italy, 2015, etc.) as he unfolds his tale in tiny, deliciously wry narrative nuggets—100 titled chapters of puckish literary pointillism."
In his sixth outing, a retired detective tries to determine the identity of a clever killer who's seeking revenge against him. Read full book review >

BLUE FIELD by Elise Levine
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 16, 2017

"A transgressive, gut-wrenching portrayal of grief that asks what it's like to drown."
A deeply damaged woman flirts with death in the depths of underwater caves. Read full book review >
TWO LOST BOYS by L.F. Robertson
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 16, 2017

"The author's work as a defense attorney handling death penalty cases brings authenticity to an exciting debut that focuses on providing grist for the slow-moving wheels of the criminal justice system."
An attorney specializing in death row appeals discovers plenty of reasons to plead for clemency for her client. Read full book review >
THE CHIRON CONFESSION by Thomas Greanias
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 16, 2017

"A skillful, exciting blend of history, action, and drama set in the ancient world."
In ancient Rome, a playwright accused of plotting against the emperor finds refuge with a secret group of Christians in this adventure novel. Read full book review >

EXIT STRATEGY by Steve Hamilton
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 16, 2017

"Though this book lacks the depth of the series opener, its hard-wired plot and adrenaline-fueled scenes make it another must-read for fans of lean, mean crime fiction."
Nick Mason, who has been killing people for Darius Cole, the all-powerful inmate who got him sprung from a maximum security prison in exchange for such services, is targeted himself after initiating a scheme to free himself from Cole's clutches. Read full book review >
THE THIRST by Jo Nesbø
by Jo Nesbø, translated by Neil Smith
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 11, 2017

"Middling for this distinguished series: yet more evidence of why Scandinavian crime writers continue to dominate international bestseller lists."
Retired Inspector Harry Hole, who thinks he's safe from his demons as an underpaid lecturer in Oslo's Police College, gets blackmailed into returning to the Crime Squad Unit, with predictably explosive results. Read full book review >
BLOOD WORK by Michael Lister
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 9, 2017

"Set aside a block of time to read the 12th in Lister's series (Blood Oath, 2016, etc.), for it may be impossible to put down. Conflicted characters and a shocking solution add up to an enthralling experience."
A Florida prison chaplain with investigative experience reopens an ice-cold case that will change his life forever. Read full book review >
THE PLAY OF DEATH by Oliver Pötzsch
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 9, 2017

"Pötzsch's (The Castle of Kings, 2016, etc.) sixth tale from the Hangman's Daughter series chronicles another provocative mystery in an uncommon setting."
In the shadow of Bavaria's Kofel Mountain, "that old demon," Venetian dwarves, family rivalries, xenophobia, and greed make a witch's brew of murders. Read full book review >
THE RUN-OUT GROOVE by Andrew Cartmel
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 9, 2017

"This is one vinyl nerd you won't mind spending time with."
A tracker of rare records goes on the hunt to find out the truth behind the suicide of a 1960s legend and the kidnapping of her child in the second outing of Cartmel's (Written in Dead Wax, 2016) series. Read full book review >
SILENT RAIN by Karin Salvalaggio
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 9, 2017

"Salvalaggio's fourth installment (Walleye Junction, 2016, etc.) lives up to her talent for dropping unhappy souls into grim circumstances and handing them over to her flawed but capable protagonist to save or arrest."
There are more tricks than treats when a quiet college town bursts into violence on Halloween. Read full book review >
BABYLON BERLIN by Volker Kutscher
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 9, 2017

"The first in a series that's been wildly popular in Germany is an excellent police procedural that cleverly captures the dark and dangerous period of the Weimer Republic before it slides into the ultimate evil of Nazism."
Welcome to Berlin in the 1920s: a city filled with vice, violence, greed, corruption, and political mayhem. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >