Mystery & Crime Book Reviews (page 931)

USED TO KILL by Lillian O'Donnell
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 5, 1993

"The plot is complex but believable, the characters and dialogue a bit wooden, and Gwenn herself is less appealing than O'Donnell's best creation—policewoman Norah Mulcahaney—but the zigs and zags here will hold the reader to the final surprising twist."
Private investigator Gwenn Ramadge, the author's newest heroine (A Wreath for the Bride, 1990), is trying to find the truth behind the death of businessman Douglas Trent, bludgeoned to death in his elegant Queens home. Read full book review >
BEWARE OF THE DOG by E.X. Ferrars
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 5, 1993

What will become of aged housekeeper/companion Anna Cox now that her charge, octogenarian Helen Lovelock, has died and left her house, her emeralds, and most of her money to her niece Kate, an actress due in shortly from the States, and to her long-lost nephew Nick, recently arrived from Australia? Read full book review >

THE PLYMOUTH CLOAK by Kate Sedley
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"Less atmospheric than Death and the Chapman, and it takes much padding to stretch the skimpy plot to booklength."
A limp second outing for medieval peddlar Roger the Chapman finds him, in 1473, taking on another assignment for the Duke of Gloucester—this time, to keep the Duke's agent, Philip Underdown, safe until he can board The Falcon at Plymouth, two days hence, and sail for France with an important message for the Breton court. Read full book review >
MURDER IN AMSTERDAM by
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"But DeKok is no Maigret. (The publisher has scheduled for 1993 some 14 other US editions of ``Baantjer/DeKok'' titles.)"
Two more minimalist procedurals for Amsterdam manhunter Inspector DeKok (DeKok and the Somber Nude, p. 1089). Read full book review >
DUNSTER by John Mortimer
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"The disappointment here is that Mortimer doesn't do much with Dunster, who recedes from view as the plot thickens; still, his latest is just provocative enough to keep readers alert and amused."
Mortimer (Titmuss Regained, 1991, etc.) returns with a neatly plotted, fast-paced entertainment—a mix of suspense and social comedy that disturbs stereotypes by pitting an overly zealous muckraking journalist against a sympathetic pillar of the Establishment. Read full book review >

DEGREE OF GUILT by Richard North Patterson
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"Patterson's target audience seems to be everybody who's ever read a book—and most of them will consider it money well-spent. (First printing of 250,000)"
Finally, a courtroom drama to rival Presumed Innocent: The scandal-strewn, hugely entertaining story of what happens after a glamorous TV reporter shoots America's most famous writer in his San Francisco hotel room. Read full book review >
PRIVATE PRACTICES by Stephen White
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"Book us for another session, please. (First printing of 35,000)"
If White is to be believed, clinical psychology ranks as a dangerous profession right up there with police work, firefighting, and livery-cab driving. Read full book review >
CHILD OF SILENCE by Abigail Padgett
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"Given the manic- depressive bent of detectives ever since Sherlock Holmes, why hasn't anybody thought of all this before?"
Barbara Joan Bradley, San Diego child-abuse investigator, is promised that her newest case—Weppo, a young boy abandoned on a Paiute Indian reservation—will be routine. Read full book review >
THE HANGING GARDEN by John Sherwood
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"As usual, though, you'll have a pleasantly civilized time watching her try."
When bossy Antonia Hanbury takes a fatal spill down a flight of stairs in her house in Madeira, her executrix—plant-nursery-keeping aunt Celia Grant (The Sunflower Plot, etc.)—is dispatched to the Portuguese island to clear her estate and see to arrangements for Antonia's father, retired MI-5 eminence Sir Adrian Morton, crippled by a stroke. Read full book review >
TRADE SECRETS by Maynard F. Thomson
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"A lightly entertaining mystery-caper, though it's not clear from the ending if newcomer Nase plans a return to the Boston jurisdiction."
Boston p.i., Nason Nichols, one jump ahead of a bulldog divorce lawyer's alimony demands, thinks his newest case—recovering the computer-chip technology that Dr. Bruce Platt took when he jumped ship from Zoltec Industries—will be routine. Read full book review >
BROKEN STAR by Lizbie Brown
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"Efficient, unsurprising plotting; medium-grade banter; obvious culprit."
Anglophilic Yanks from John Dickson Carr to Martha Grimes have written some of the most British detective stories of all—like this hardcover debut from Brown: a salt-and-pepper pairing of Bath investigator Max Shepard and transplanted Virginian widow Elizabeth Blair. Read full book review >
DEAD SET by Jennie Melville
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"The author's oblique writing style can be precious at times, but, still, there's a well-crafted plot—plus enough chilling moments—to make for steadily engrossing entertainment."
Police officer Charmian Daniels (Witching Murder, etc. etc.) is enjoying a major promotion and her small house in Windsor, near the Castle. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Libba Bray
author of LAIR OF DREAMS
August 25, 2015

In Lair of Dreams, the second installment of Libba Bray’s bestselling young adult Diviners series, after a supernatural showdown with a serial killer, Evie O'Neill has outed herself as a Diviner. Now that the world knows of her ability to "read" objects, and therefore, read the past, she has become a media darling, earning the title "America's Sweetheart Seer." But not everyone is so accepting of the Diviners' abilities....Meanwhile, mysterious deaths have been turning up in the city, victims of an unknown sleeping sickness. Can the Diviners descend into the dreamworld and catch a killer? “Weaving together a chilling mystery with a truly elusive solution, several poignant love stories, agonizing injustice, terrifyingly monstrous dreams, and even a cameo by legendary psychiatrist Carl Jung, this installment wraps enough up to satisfy but clearly sets the stage for more,” our reviewer writes in a rare starred review. “How will readers stand the wait?” View video >