Mystery & Crime Book Reviews (page 7)

QUICK OFF THE MARK  by Susan Moody
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Jan. 1, 2017

"Moody (Quick and the Dead, 2016, etc.), who can't seem to make up her mind whether to be cozy or gritty, alternates actual wit with adolescent jokes and a parade of sliced-and-diced corpses."
An ex-detective resumes sleuthing in the grisly death of a childhood friend. Read full book review >
DEATH NOTES by Sarah Rayne
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Jan. 1, 2017

"Rayne, author of the Nell West haunted house books (The Bell Tower, 2016, etc.), kicks off an ambitious new series. The complicated plot may be challenging for readers, but her atmospheric prose and sure-footed instinct for suspense add up to another page-turner."
In investigating the life of a notorious 19th-century Russian violinist, a researcher stumbles on a tangle of disturbing mysteries. Read full book review >

THE MURDER BOOK by Jane A. Adams
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Jan. 1, 2017

"The creator of Naomi Blake (A Murderous Mind, 2016, etc.) and Rina Martin (Forgotten Voices, 2015, etc.) launches a new series with a pair of murder specialists who are worthy additions to the world of period detection."
A murder detective from London stalks a killer in rural Lincolnshire. Read full book review >
A PINCH OF POISON by Alyssa Maxwell
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Dec. 27, 2016

"Colorful information on the postwar period is combined with plenty of suspects, all neatly wrapped up in the style of a classic mystery."
A titled lady and her maid work to solve a murder at a girls' school. Read full book review >
BELL, BOOK & CANDLEMAS by Jennifer David Hesse
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Dec. 27, 2016

"Half mystery, half chick lit, with a filigree of paganism, this is a cabin read: as lightly enjoyable yet forgettable as one of those beach reads, but in a wintry, woodsy setting."
Practicing attorney and Wiccan Keli Milanni (Midsummer Night's Mischief, 2016) investigates threats against the local magic shop at her own peril. Read full book review >

DEATH ON THE PATAGONIAN EXPRESS by Hy Conrad
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Dec. 27, 2016

"TV writer/producer Conrad provides mild mother-daughter tussling, an ingenious and highly improbable mystery, and suspects so forgettable that the culprit is even easier to spot than that telltale corpse."
A mother-daughter team of travel experts is invited on a luxury train trip across Patagonia during which Murphy's law reigns supreme. Read full book review >
CUSTOM BAKED MURDER  by Liz Mugavero
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Dec. 27, 2016

"A trimmer plotline might help Mugavero's future entries, but in this one, the tail definitely wags the dog."
A baker of doggie treats turns detective. Read full book review >
DEATH AT ST. VEDAST by Mary Lawrence
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Dec. 27, 2016

"Although the novel may be freighted with too much research for its own good, its no-nonsense heroine (Death of an Alchemist, 2016, etc.), like so many others of her ilk, propels the action very successfully by refusing to mind her own business."
Madness and death follow in quick order in 16th-century England. Read full book review >
ICED UNDER by Barbara Ross
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Dec. 27, 2016

"Ross (Fogged Inn, 2016, etc.) knows her Maine coast and her snowstorms. Both provide an atmospheric backdrop for a cozy that, though a little heavy on genealogy, picks up its pace when its focus returns to the living and the newly dead."
A costly necklace and a feuding family make for a murderous reunion in New England. Read full book review >
DISAPPEAR OUR DEAD by Gin Mackey
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Dec. 23, 2016

"Goes beyond a cozy, small-town mystery to consider some immense and difficult matters."
A widow's efforts to become a home-funeral guide entangle her in a murder case in this novel. Read full book review >
THE CAT SITTER AND THE CANARY by John Clement
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Dec. 20, 2016

"The Clements' blending of accessible procedural facts with their heroine's love of animals and the cozy small-town setting makes their latest a fun and breezy read."
A cop-turned-catsitter can't help but investigate when she finds a body at her newest client's place. Read full book review >
AT WHAT COST by James L'Etoile
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Dec. 13, 2016

"The milieu, suspects, and supporting characters are all forgettable, and the killer scarcely puts in an appearance before he's unmasked as a bogeyman. The results are best suited to nail-biters in search of something to read in a single breathless sitting, though presumably not in a doctor's waiting room."
L'Etoile's first novel pits a Sacramento police detective against a killer who's mutilated corpses for the worst possible reason. 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 >