Mystery & Crime Book Reviews (page 953)

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 >
PRIMAL FEAR by William Diehl
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"It'll make a great movie, though. (Film rights to Paramount)"
Though Diehl never breaks new thriller-ground, he generally does a fine job of hoeing others' rows—from the cop-novel Sharky's Machine (1978) through the mob novel Hooligans (1984) and the Nazi- conspiracy novel 27 (1990). Read full book review >
HAND IN GLOVE by Robert Goddard
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"He comes a cropper, though, with that second- tier secret and its working out, which lacks even the conviction of ingenuity."
A faltering from usually reliable melodramatist Goddard (A Debt of Dishonor; Into the Blue, etc.): Charlotte Ladram, mopping up after her elderly Aunt Beatrix's murder, unearths an incredible lode of 50- year-old scandals. Read full book review >
BIGFOOT by Richard Hoyt
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"Sly fun, as always, for outdoorsy readers everywhere."
Three recent sightings of the Sasquatch, aka Bigfoot, on and near Mount St. Read full book review >
THE MYSTERY ROAST by Peter Gadol
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"Gadol's characters' unique mix of youthful wonder with a lighthearted disregard for traditional authority makes for wry, sharp urban humor: a witty, entertaining New York tale."
The 27-year-old author's second novel (following Coyote, 1990) delights with its tale of a profitable encounter between the habituÇs of a postmodern N.Y.C. coffee shop and a powerful trickster spirit from the ancient past. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Michael Eric Dyson
February 2, 2016

In Michael Eric Dyson’s rich and nuanced book new book, The Black Presidency: Barack Obama and the Politics of Race in America, Dyson writes with passion and understanding about Barack Obama’s “sad and disappointing” performance regarding race and black concerns in his two terms in office. While race has defined his tenure, Obama has been “reluctant to take charge” and speak out candidly about the nation’s racial woes, determined to remain “not a black leader but a leader who is black.” Dyson cogently examines Obama’s speeches and statements on race, from his first presidential campaign through recent events—e.g., the Ferguson riots and the eulogy for the Rev. Clementa Pinckney in Charleston—noting that the president is careful not to raise the ire of whites and often chastises blacks for their moral failings. At his best, he spoke with “special urgency for black Americans” during the Ferguson crisis and was “at his blackest,” breaking free of constraints, in his “Amazing Grace” Charleston eulogy. Dyson writes here as a realistic, sometimes-angry supporter of the president. View video >