Mystery & Crime Book Reviews (page 4)

THE PAINTED QUEEN by Elizabeth Peters
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 25, 2017

"Hess (Pride vs. Prejudice, 2015, etc.) undoubtedly had a daunting task in completing the final manuscript of the late Egyptologist Peters (A River in the Sky, 2010, etc.). Fans will cherish the legacy; newcomers will be forgiven for fidgeting through the busy plot and arch humor."
The 19th installment of the adventures of an archaeological family facing a vendetta as they chase a real-life artifact. Read full book review >
LET THE DEAD SPEAK  by Jane Casey
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 25, 2017

"Casey's hallmark ability to balance character development and suspense works well in a story sure to make readers squirm."
Unreliable witnesses make a London detective's job all but impossible in a missing person investigation that turns into a murder case. Read full book review >

A TOAST TO MURDER  by Allyson K. Abbott
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 25, 2017

"Though Abbott resolves the mystery posed by Shots in the Dark (2016), which first introduced the threatening letters, there's hardly enough plot here for a stand-alone volume."
Synesthesia, a neurological condition that, among other sensory-heightening effects, allows you to see music and smell colors, helps a bar owner find the identity of a threatening letter writer. Read full book review >
THE FALLEN by Ace Atkins
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 18, 2017

"Beneath the down-home Southern trappings, fans will find Atkins' customary mixture of political corruption, true-blue policing, intimate betrayals, and wholesale violence. The satisfyingly inconclusive ending of this sequel to the equally dark The Innocents (2016) puts a whole new spin on catharsis."
Reluctantly back in the saddle as the sheriff of Tibbehah County, Mississippi, Quinn Colson goes up against a trio of bank robbers as cunning as they are clueless. Read full book review >
ARROWOOD by Mick Finlay
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 18, 2017

"A great concept worked out with more grit than inspiration. The inevitable franchise has already been optioned for television, a medium you can only hope will hang on to the best bits here and toss out the rest."
Finlay debuts with a tale built on a wonderful premise: a downscale Sherlock Holmes for the rest of us. Read full book review >

COLLARED by David Rosenfelt
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 18, 2017

"Rosenfelt's matchless gift for feather-light exposition that hurtles along without ever feeling rushed or foggy allows him to keep the complications coming until nearly the end. It's only the denouement that feels as if a lesser ghostwriter, perhaps an obliging pooch, had taken over."
Ebulliently inventive Rosenfelt finds yet another way to involve unwilling Paterson attorney Andy Carpenter (The Twelve Dogs of Christmas, 2016, etc.) in a case in which one of the leading roles is played by a canine. Read full book review >
A DISTANT VIEW OF EVERYTHING by Alexander McCall Smith
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 18, 2017

"'I have a tendency, I'm afraid, to think at a bit of a tangent,' the heroine confesses. Like-minded readers will fasten onto her latest plot-seasoned ruminations as manna from heaven."
Edinburgh philosopher Isabel Dalhousie's cases (The Novel Habits of Happiness, 2015, etc.) keep getting slighter and slighter. But her exceptionally well-titled 11th may be the slenderest of them all. Read full book review >
DARK WATER by Parker Bilal
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 13, 2017

"Bilal's sixth (City of Jackals, 2016, etc.) again plants a seed of suspense as an entree into a nuanced look at an unfamiliar culture."
An Egyptian detective is lured into protecting a maverick scientist in hiding from terrorists. But who's the real target? Read full book review >
NIKOLAI DELOV by James Dante
Released: July 12, 2017

"The sympathetic and flawed lead character puts a haunting human face on contemporary Russia, often demonized by the media."
A successful businessman's involvement with a woman determined to rescue sex trafficking victims exposes the underbelly of the New Russia in this noir-esque character study. Read full book review >
TEN DEAD COMEDIANS by Fred Van Lente
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 11, 2017

"Van Lente, a comic-book writer publishing his first mystery, focuses more closely on the big picture than its components. Even so, his plot requires so many moving parts that readers may feel he should have included a Cast of Characters, like all those Agatha Christie paperbacks he's emulating."
In an homage to And Then There Were None, a group of comedians is picked off one by one as they try to out-personality one another. Read full book review >
THE DEVIL'S MUSE by Bill Loehfelm
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 11, 2017

"Loehfelm doesn't need showy murders or gory scenes to writes crime stories with grit that stay lodged in your brain and get under your skin in the best possible way."
A rookie New Orleans cop discovers that regular rules don't apply during Mardi Gras, when a shooting sets off a cascading series of violent events. Read full book review >
SHALLOW GRAVE by Brian Thiem
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 11, 2017

"Part sequel, part remake of the hero's last case. It will be a distinct pleasure to see him move on to fresh targets next time."
Oakland PD Sgt. Matt Sinclair's third case awakens painful, and painfully specific, memories of his second. 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 >