Mystery & Crime Book Reviews (page 948)

DEMONS by Bill Pronzini
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Sept. 8, 1993

"Okay, but not gripping."
Nameless gets involved in a case that recalls his Shackles (1988) demons when he agrees to track down Kay Runyan's husband, architect Victor, who's become obsessed with world-class enchantress Nedra Merchant. Read full book review >
MURDER CONFOUNDED by Roderic Jeffries
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Sept. 8, 1993

"Not on the level of Jeffries's best, but Alvarez retains his gentle charm (fans might wish the author would give him a life), and his latest outing provides an affable diversion."
Sixteenth in this easy-to-take series featuring Majorcan Police Inspector Enrique Alvarez (Murder's Long Memory, etc.) and his long-running battles with food, drink, and Superior Chief Salas. Read full book review >

NUN PLUSSED by Monica Quill
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Sept. 7, 1993

"One of the better efforts in this series from Quill (aka Ralph McInerny): cluttered and uncompelling but comfortable diversion."
Seventysomething historian Sister Mary Teresa Dempsey, head of Chicago's three-person remnant of the Holy Order of Martha and Mary, is as sharp as ever here (Sister Hood, etc.) and still capable of being upset by the waywardness of former students. Read full book review >
MAESTRO by John E. Gardner
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 7, 1993

Peerless conductor Louis Passau, accused on the eve of his 90th birthday of having been a Nazi spy, is to be debriefed by a covey of British and American agents—until two breathless attempts on his life leave him in the maverick hands of Big Herbie Kruger (the paperback The Quiet Dogs, etc.), pulled out from retirement to serve as his father confessor. Read full book review >
CONSIDER THE CROWS by Charlene Weir
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Sept. 6, 1993

"Overall: fairly standard stuff."
Former San Francisco cop Susan Wren, now a widow and the police chief in tiny, insular Hampstead, Kansas, discovers that Lynnelle—the poor waif found dead in the woods—thought local college math professor Carena Egersund was the birth-mother who relinquished her years before. Read full book review >

THE MASK OF ZEUS by Desmond Cory
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Sept. 6, 1993

"Lady Macdougal'') lies an originality that goes deeper than the surface details of this elegantly loopy tale."
Offbeat isn't the word for this new adventure of Cardiff math professor John Dobie (The Catalyst, 1991), exiled to Cyprus to take the place of his former student Derya TÅner. Read full book review >
CRACKING OPEN A COFFIN by Gwendoline Butler
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Sept. 6, 1993

"A bit flawed by its unusually choppy narrative style and by a too heavy concentration on Coffin's psyche—but, still, solid work in one of the genre's most interesting series."
Crises—personal and professional—beset Chief Commander John Coffin of the Second City of London police (Coffin on Murder Street, etc.) as he grapples with the disappearance of local University students Amy Dean and Martin Blackhall, son of University Rector Sir Thomas Blackhall. Read full book review >
THE WOLVES OF SAVERNAKE by Edward Marston
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 6, 1993

"Marston fans may hope for his early return to that other world he so brilliantly re-created."
The author moves from his customary Elizabethan Age theater world (The Mad Courtesan, etc.) to 1086 and the village of Bedwyn, dominated by its Abbey, its Royal Mint, and the Savernake Forest surrounding it. Read full book review >
MURDER IN MINIATURE by Leo Bruce
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 2, 1993

"Despite a few ingenious surprises and occasional ironic touches, then: a volume that adds little luster to the Bruce canon (Such is Death, etc.)."
A collection of 28 short—very short—stories by Leo Bruce (pseudonym of the late Rupert Croft-Cooke), all but one written in the 50's for the London Evening Standard. Read full book review >
ELVIS, JESUS, AND COCA COLA by Kinky Friedman
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 2, 1993

"Not much about Coca-Cola, though."
Nobody (certainly not sneering Sgt. Read full book review >
THE TRIAL OF ABIGAIL GOODMAN by Howard Fast
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Sept. 1, 1993

"Fast, in any event, is donating profits from the book to Planned Parenthood."
That robustly persistent booster of the cause of civil liberties and the brotherhood of man, and author of over 80 published works (most recently, Being Red, 1990), now takes on the cause of women's rights—specifically the right to choose abortion- -and produces a lively courtroom drama, set in an unnamed southern state. Read full book review >
THE MEXICAN TREE DUCK by James Crumley
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Sept. 1, 1993

"Scruffy C.W. is obviously meant to be irresistible this time, and maybe he is, if he's what you've been waiting for. (First printing of 50,000)"
Crumley's first novel in ten years is a blast from the past—and not the Eighties, either. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Nancy Isenberg
author of WHITE TRASH
July 19, 2016

Poor Americans have existed from the time of the earliest British colonial settlement. They were alternately known as “waste people,” “offals,” “rubbish,” “lazy lubbers,” and “crackers.” By the 1850s, the downtrodden included so-called “clay eaters” and “sandhillers,” known for prematurely aged children distinguished by their yellowish skin, ragged clothing, and listless minds. Surveying political rhetoric and policy, popular literature and scientific theories over 400 years, in White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America, Nancy Isenberg upends assumptions about America’s supposedly class-free society––where liberty and hard work were meant to ensure real social mobility. Poor whites were central to the rise of the Republican Party in the early nineteenth century, and the Civil War itself was fought over class issues nearly as much as it was fought over slavery. “A riveting thesis supported by staggering research,” our reviewer writes in a starred review. View video >