Mystery & Crime Book Reviews (page 955)

BENT GRASSES by Frank Palmer
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Jan. 12, 1995

"Tough, smart, and crisply paced, with every twist perfectly judged: the most solidly packed British procedural you'll read this season."
Now that Michael Hegan, the former Belfast terrorist who got a new identity when he turned informer and then used his freedom to hold up a bank, is back in prison awaiting trial, he's an obvious target for murder—by the IRA mates he betrayed, the Brits angered by his light sentence, or anybody who might be interested in the ú2 million from the bank job. Read full book review >
KISS THE GIRLS by James Patterson
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Jan. 11, 1995

"As a storyteller, Patterson is a great ad copywriter."
Advertising executive Patterson doubles neither our pleasure nor our fun by giving us two intense, Hannibal Lecter-type murderers for the price of one in an improbable and hopelessly derivative mess of a thriller. Read full book review >

EYES OF A CHILD by Richard North Patterson
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Jan. 11, 1995

"The adversarial nature of American criminal justice has never been more brilliantly dramatized. (First printing of 250,000; Literary Guild main selection; author tour)"
About the only trauma San Francisco superlawyer Christopher Paget was spared in his previous appearance (Degree of Guilt, 1993) was being put on trial for murder himself—an omission Patterson rectifies here when Chris is charged with killing the estranged husband of his associate and lover, Teresa Peralta. Read full book review >
BLACK RIBBON by Susan Conant
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Jan. 9, 1995

"Mystery close to zero, character interest ditto, a complete collapse of narrative tension once nasty Eva gets crushed under an overturned agility track—in other words, nothing to get in the way of Conant's latest rapturous paean to Humankind's Best Friend."
If you've read any of Conant's earlier dogolatrous mysteries (Ruffly Speaking, 1994, etc.), you know perfectly well whether this one is your meat; if you haven't, be warned that the author's most fervent acknowledgments are reserved for her two Alaskan malamutes. Read full book review >
CROOKED MAN by Tony Dunbar
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Jan. 4, 1995

"Tubby and his town are fine company, but even the easiest mouthpiece in the Big Easy ought to have a tighter plot than this."
Everybody thinks New Orleans lawyer Tubby Dubonnet knows where to find the $950,000 the DEA missed when they caught Tubby's client Darryl Alvarez unloading bales of marijuana from a vanished boat. Read full book review >

CAPITOL OFFENSE by Tony Gibbs
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Jan. 1, 1995

"Ridiculous, but enjoyable and hard to put down."
Gibbs (Shadow Queen, 1992) returns with another thriller starring Diana Speed, a tall, brainy, former politician's wife who works at Wild-Freeman publishing for a mysterious boss. Read full book review >
AN IMPERFECT SPY by Amanda Cross
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Jan. 1, 1995

The mystery element, never the strongest feature of Cross's civilized Kate Fansler stories (The Players Come Again, 1990, etc.), has been ebbing away for years. Read full book review >
THE MAN WITH MY NAME by Paul Engleman
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Jan. 1, 1995

"1989, etc.) sets up an irresistibly paranoid Act One for his new hero before spiraling into an absurdly complicated Act Two it would have taken a Lawrence Block to tame."
The 3 a.m. phone call that wakes up former Chicago Fire Department paramedic Phil Moony and his wife, Frankie Martin, is from one Larry Little looking for Phil Moony—but it isn't our Phil, it's some other guy in town who spells his name the same funny way, and who'll want to hear (says Larry) that Tony Rio's just gotten back from ``vacation.'' Just to keep the conversation going, Phil offers to help Larry find the other Phil for $500. Read full book review >
WHAT EVIL LURKS by James R. McCahery
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Jan. 1, 1995

"Newcomer McCahery, who manages to do nothing with the promising radio background, contents himself with spooning soothing syrup for readers who think Jessica Fletcher lives a little too close to the edge."
Older people are notorious for sometimes wandering in their conversation, so it's no surprise that the friends of the late radio personality Henry Blaine talk and talk without saying anything. Read full book review >
FAMILY ALBUM by Susan Oleksiw
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Jan. 1, 1995

"Yet Oleksiw, who's clearly growing as a novelist, makes you feel how much she loves these well-meaning, tiresomely virtuous folks and their cosseted life, and doggone it if you don't find yourself warming to them too."
A tough week for the Arbella Historical Society of Mellingham, Mass.: First, staid donor/volunteer George Frome sets the board on its ear by disrupting its regular meeting with the news that several of the Society's canvases have been checked out, presumably taken by an insider—somebody in the room with him, he's too polite to add—and then George himself checks out courtesy of a lethal dose of the vegetable poison aconitine, which somebody, again an intimate, has sneaked onto his salad fixings. Read full book review >
BONES GATHER NO MOSS by John Sherwood
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Jan. 1, 1995

"As usual, Sherwood (Creeping Jenny, 1993, etc.) doesn't shirk the plot complications, though botanical amateurs may find those last revelations at once shrill, unconvincing, and anticlimactic."
Stricken with guilt and pity over the disappearance of Jane Greenwood, the acquaintance she recommended to take the job of cataloguing the late Paul-Henri de Fleury's samples of French wildflowers, Celia Grant agrees to travel to the ChÉteau de Fleury herself to goad the police into action—and drops into the maw of a famille de l'enfer. Read full book review >
THE SEVENTH ENEMY by William G. Tapply
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Jan. 1, 1995

"S-162 doesn't even pass. (Author tour)"
What a persuasive guy Brady Coyne is! Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >