Mystery & Crime Book Reviews (page 955)

MULCH by Ann Ripley
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 20, 1994

"A first novel whose slender plot leaves its smart, appealing heroine all dressed up with no place to go."
Gamely establishing still another garden after her husband, Bill, an ill-concealed State Department spook, moves her back to suburban DC, Louise Eldridge gathers two dozen bags of leaves from her Sylvan Valley neighbors' trash to use as organic mulch. Read full book review >
DEAD TO RIGHTS by Anna Maxes
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 20, 1994

"Reggie's barnstorming, in fact, doesn't make for very memorable scenes or characters—a shame, since this first mystery offers both an original background and a genuinely refreshing alternative to whodunit."
When college softballer Joanna Deering collapses and dies after her team loses a national championship game to underdog Burleigh College, College and University Athletic Association (CUAA) enforcer Regina Lichtmann's suspicions fasten on hard- hearted Burleigh coach Pierce Nolan. Read full book review >

WHOEVER HAS THE HEART by Jennie Melville
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 20, 1994

"Several psychics wander in and out of a plot spun in cryptic prose that tends to flatten suspense, A mildly engrossing midlevel entry in this series of offbeat procedurals."
British policewoman Charmian Daniels has reached a high rank in her Windsor-based unit (Windsor Red, 1988, etc.). Read full book review >
MISSING AT TENOCLOCK by Arthur Williams
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 17, 1994

"For all of its glamorous visitors and vivid townsfolk, this trip to Tenoclock is more skillful than exciting."
Williams, a pseudonym for John Miles (A Permanent Retirement, 1992, etc.), tells a tale of Tenoclock, which has been named Colorado's newest tourist-celebrity boomtown but where, still, Deputy Sheriff Jonelle (Johnnie) Baker can usually close the police station before midnight. Read full book review >
THE WINTER WOMEN MURDERS by David A. Kaufelt
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 15, 1994

The sudden, nonaccidental, fatal descent down a flight of stairs by Sophie Comfort Noble, ancient founder of the Annual Literary Arts Symposium (ALAS), ushers in another round of genteel mayhem in Waggs Neck Harbor, Long Island. Read full book review >

THE MONEY LOVERS by Timothy Watts
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 9, 1994

"Despite a less-than-polished narrative, a diverting, gritty caper peopled by delightfully detestable creatures. (Author tour)"
Fans of Jim Thompson, David Goodis, and Barry Gifford take note: Watts (Cons, 1993) has penned a noir novel of greed, graft, and lust just filled with kinky, double-crossing sleazeballs. Read full book review >
A RECONSTRUCTED CORPSE by Simon Brett
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 6, 1994

"Pleasantly urbane as ever, though Charles (Corporate Bodies, 1992, etc.) is unwontedly subdued and the mystery pretty transparent."
Finally, a role within Charles Paris's limited histrionic range: missing, presumed dead, in the character of Martin Earnshaw, a small-time property developer who got in too deep to a loan shark, stepped out one night for a drink, and never came back. Read full book review >
THE SECRETS OF THE CAMERA OBSCURA by David Knowles
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 6, 1994

"An intriguing first effort, working some thoughtful changes on the idea of vision and the theme of betrayal, marred by a simplistic and predictable trick ending right out of an old Alfred Hitchcock Presents episode."
Chronicle kicks off a new series of novellas in hardcover (see also Les Galloway's The Forty Fathom Bank, above) with a work highly reminiscent of Umberto Eco (among others) in its combination of historical research and contemporary suspense. Read full book review >
SILENT SON by Gallatin Warfield
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 6, 1994

It's not easy to carve out a niche in the increasingly crowded field of legal intrigue, and you have to admire the ingenuity of Warfield's approach: a courtroom mystery with no mystery. Read full book review >
JUBILEE by Robert McCrum
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 2, 1994

"Although McCrum is an expert at both deceiving and enlightening the reader, the high stakes of both the political and filial dramas are never made plausible, and this intricate mystery falls flat."
A clever but unconvincing suspense novel from the author of four previous novels (Mainland, 1992, etc.). Read full book review >
TENSLEEP by Sarah Andrews
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 1, 1994

"Oil-drilling operations and the rough-mouthed, rough-living characters who do the work get robust treatment here, but with the same sweet edge that enriches Em's spiky character and gives subtle nuancing to geologist Andrews's unhackneyed, accomplished first novel."
Geologist Emily Hansen, working as a mudlogger in the Tensleep Sandstone oilfield near tiny Meeteetse, Wyo., is sorely troubled by the seemingly accidental death of head geologist Bill Kretzmer and the subsequent killing of his protÇgÇ Willie Sewell, who had suspicions of his own. Read full book review >
OFF SEASON by Philip R. Craig
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 1, 1994

"It must be off season for crime and punishment too."
Ex-cop J.W. Jackson's idyllic engagement to Martha's Vineyard nurse Zee Madieras, and his ritual bouts of fishing and scalloping and cooking and eating, are interrupted by a feud between animal- rights activist Mimi Bettencourt and hunter/editorialist Ignacio Cortez over the proper use of the 50-acre tract that wealthy Carl Norton has just sold to a public commission; by a couple of run-ins with uncouth Providence hoodlum Joey Percell, who warns Nash Cortez to lay off them animal-rights people; and by a slight case of murder. 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 >