Mystery & Crime Book Reviews (page 953)

COUNT THE DAYS by Lin Summerfield
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Oct. 25, 1991

"Splendid evocation of country schools, English landscape, tinkers, and village mores: Anglophiles will queue up for this one."
Summerfield's debut owes much of its charm to its saucy, wise- child narrator, 11-year-old Cassie Wade, whose school chum Margie Thoroughgood, ``the girl who had everything''—blond hair, big blue eyes, a developing bust, and a splendid, shiny silver bike—stepped into a green car and was never seen again, imparting terror to all the parents and a certain notoriety to the village of Upper Grisham. Mrs. Thoroughgood befriends Cassie—begins, in fact, to obsess about her—and when Cassie's dad is abroad and her remarried mum is not eager to deal with her, Mrs. T. invites her to move into Margie's old room—and dress in her dresses and ride her bike. Mr. Thoroughgood is away for a spell, perhaps permanently. Read full book review >
JUDAS PRIEST by Ralph McInerny
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Oct. 25, 1991

"Some non-boring religious love, mostly unhackneyed characters, and a lively flow of events make for one of the better efforts in this series."
Father Dowling's quiet days at the rectory of St. Read full book review >

THE UNDERGROUND STREAM by Velda Johnston
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Oct. 24, 1991

"For faithful fans only."
Yet another of the author's beautiful, benighted heroines (The Girl on the Beach, etc.)—this one twentysomething Gail Loring, still recovering from a disastrous affair, a breakdown, and a sojourn in a psychiatric clinic. Read full book review >
SUGARLAND by Phillip Finch
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Oct. 24, 1991

"The action scenes are so-so, and too many felonies are pinned on the usual suspects—but Finch (Trespass, 1987, etc.) provides a razor- sharp Philippine setting and a splendidly laconic voice for his disillusioned, desperately hopeful hero."
Even before he leaves for the Philippines to look into the supposed death of Carlito Sanchez, insurance-investigator Jack Hart is half in love with a photo of Lito's cousin Evangeline Flores. Read full book review >
SMASH CUT by Steven Womack
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Oct. 23, 1991

"Workmanlike plotting and prose—enlivened only by Lynch's relationship with his acerbic, bored secretary Maud."
New Orleans p.r. honcho Jack Lynch (Murphy's Fault), now trying to score positive media points for client Andrew Kwang, whose plans to purchase the defunct Riverbend Nuclear Power Plant and convert it into Kwang World Pictures headquarters has run afoul of Pearl Bergeron, representative of the Louisiana Film Commission- -is suddenly up to his press releases in trouble: Pearl is murdered, and Lynch's client shapes up as the number one suspect. Read full book review >

THE PRESIDENT'S MAN by Elliott Roosevelt
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Oct. 22, 1991

"Repetitive, clichÇd hoodlum dialogue, perfunctory sex passages, and endless details of clothes worn and food eaten keep this one dull and static beneath all the gunfire, but history and nostalgia buffs might like it anyway."
First of a series of posthumous novels featuring Jack Endicott, a friend of and troubleshooter for Franklin Roosevelt, then New York Governor, soon to be elected to his first term as President. Read full book review >
PARTY TILL YOU DIE by David Charnee
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Oct. 22, 1991

"The first in a series, which can only improve."
A gimmicky first novel introducing clown/juggler Pat Arnold (the Archie Goodwin role) and rich, smart, attorney/part-time super-sleuth and freelance clown D.L. Blacker (Nero Wolfe wannabe), who meet when both are hired by obnoxious wheeler-dealer Gary Johnson to play the Mega-Bank employee party. Read full book review >
AN EYE FOR AN EYE by Joseph Teluskin
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Oct. 22, 1991

"Not entirely satisfactory as either detective story or moral exemplum—but Teluskin keeps the pot boiling briskly until the end."
Distinguished physician Gerald Braun shoots Ron Martin, his daughter's confessed killer—who got off with six years—in front of two police officers but gets out on his own recognizance after his rabbi, Daniel Winter, argues his case before the court. Read full book review >
THE CIRCLE OF MYNNIA by L.L. Blackmur
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Oct. 21, 1991

"Blackmur's wicked sense of humor, droll way with a conversational skewer, and blithe disregard of every accepted mystery convention should delight clichÇ-weary readers and win new fans."
A charming concoction in which the sensible Joan Cook, after a boating mishap on Martha's Vineyard, falls for wealthy playboy Philip Dumas and moves to Paris with him, where they share digs with his dad, Chick, a gone-to-seed archaeologist; Chick's much younger wife, Charlotte; Philip's acerbic sister, Hayden; and world-class mooch Walter Hudson. Read full book review >
DEADSTICK by Terence Faherty
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Oct. 21, 1991

A sure-handed debut introduces failed seminarian/current law- firm researcher Owen Keane, a questing young man often at emotional/philosophical odds with his attorney boss Harry, a college chum, and with his quasi-girlfriend Marilyn, a relentlessly pragmatic librarian. Read full book review >
CHASING AWAY THE DEVIL by Susan Rogers  Cooper
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Oct. 21, 1991

"Solid and satisfying."
Recently divorced, tough-tender Milt Kovack, Deputy Sheriff of Prophesy County, Oklahoma (Other People's Houses, etc.), has proposed marriage to feisty waitress Glenda Sue and been rejected. Read full book review >
EVIDENCE OF BLOOD by Thomas H. Cook
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: Oct. 18, 1991

"One of the better Cooks to date."
Lush-languaged Cook (Sacrificial Ground, Blood Innocents), in a pared-down mode. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Luis Alberto Urrea
April 21, 2015

Examining the borders between one nation and another, between one person and another, Luis Alberto Urrea’s latest story collection, The Water Museum, reveals his mastery of the short form. This collection includes the Edgar-award winning "Amapola" and his now-classic "Bid Farewell to Her Many Horses," which had the honor of being chosen for NPR's "Selected Shorts" not once but twice. Urrea has also recently published a poetry collection, Tijuana Book of the Dead, mixing lyricism and colloquial voices, mysticism and the daily grind. We talk to Urrea about both of his new books this week on Kirkus TV. View video >