ccused of murdering her fiancé. When an attempt is made to abduct the child and Natasha escapes from the police, Nina becomes involved in the case which has ties to crimes in the Ukraine in the 1930s. Readers are given an insider’s view of both Denmark and the Ukraine and as the authors have said “Eastern Europe is intensely interesting to us Danes because geographically it is very close and yet many of us have no idea what it looks like and what it is like living there.”
Prague ($16.00) by Kelly Jones, combines
elements of history and mystery in the modern–day Czech Republic. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, journalist
Dana Pierson traveled Europe with her cousin, Caroline, who stayed behind in Prague when Dana returned to America. When Dana visits her cousin, now in a Czech convent,
Caroline asks her to look into the death of a fellow nun whose demise may be
linked to the murder of a politician. Czech history is woven into the story as
Dana investigates both deaths and revisits the streets of Prague.
Italy. Although not generally as well known as Donna Leon, who writes about Venice and Magdalene
Nabb, who wrote about Florence,
Williams, who sets his books in Northern
Italy, is an award winning
author well worth discovering. His first book, Converging
Parallels was published in 1982 and
Piero Trotti, an investigator determined to solve crimes, whatever the cost to
his career. In Black August ($14.95), the Commisario investigates
the murder of an old friend who had been found beaten to death in her
apartment. Despite being warned off the case by his superiors, Trotti doggedly
pursues the case, stirring up an even greater amount of trouble than
usual. The fourth book in the series, Black
August won the Crime Writers Award in 1992 when it was first published.
ccident ($15.00) has all the
necessary elements of a page-turner: great characters, a twisty plot and enough
tension to keep you reading long past bedtime. When Isabel Reed, a literary
agent in New York,
finishes the latest manuscript that’s come across her desk, she realizes two
things; she has a potential block buster on her hands and the publication of
the manuscript, which was submitted anonymously, will put many lives in danger.
The book’s subject matter involves a media mogul’s wheelings and dealings with
powerful figures from all walks of life, including government officials from
around the globe and people from Isabel’s shadowy past. The Accident won a starred review
from Booklist which offered the following praise: “Pavone’s plot twists
tirelessly, shifting focus among a large cast of well-drawn characters and
using flashbacks and changes of locale (Copenhagen,
to build suspense.” The author worked for several years as an editor and knows
the publishing world inside and out. His first novel, The Expats, (which
I thoroughly enjoyed) won both the Edgar and Anthony award for Best First novel
when it was published.
cci Gerrard and Sean French has been writing psychological thrillers as Nicci French, since 1997, when The
Memory Game was published. Recently, the married writers have focused on a
series featuring Frieda Klein, a psychotherapist in London.
First seen in Blue Monday (2011), Frieda Klein is a gifted doctor often called
on by the police to consult on challenging cases. In Waiting for Wednesday
($16.00), the 3rd in the series, Dr. Klein is asked to review a case
where there appears to be no motive for the murder. Klein is intrigued and soon
uncovers that the victim was leading a secret life. This series is perfect for readers who enjoy
strong female characters and darker- edged British mysteries.
$14.95) by Elly Griffiths
is the 6th in her series starring forensic archaeologist Ruth
Galloway. Introduced in The Crossing
Places (2009), Ruth lectures at the University of North Norfolk when she is not out on a dig or acting as a
consultant for the local police. Her latest archaeological find is the grave of
a notorious murderer from the 1800s who was dubbed “Mother Hook.” The woman was
said to have taken in orphans and then disposed of them and was hung in 1867.
At the same time that the bones are being unearthed, a tragedy strikes a local
family and Ruth is drawn into the investigation. According to the author, her inspiration for the character of Ruth came
from her aunt “..who lives in Norfolk and still, at over seventy,
teaches Maths, drinks gin and steers her boat along the Norfolk broads (rivers). Ruth is
probably a combination of all the strong women in my life.”
, known for her fabulous Prime Suspect series featuring DCI Jane
Tennison , has written another series with a complex female lead. Anna Travis,
first seen in Above Suspicion (2004)
has risen to the rank of DCI in London. In Wrongful Death ($15.99), the 9th
book in the series, new evidence leads Anna to review a case that was ruled a
suicide. Her investigation leads her to question the original findings (and the
work done by fellow officers) and puts her career in jeopardy.
4:50 From Paddington?) but Hawkins puts her own spin on it. Rachel Watson
takes the same train, day after dreary day, on her way to and from work. The
tracks pass by the back gardens of houses and Rachel imagine the idyllic lives
of the couple she often sees there. One day she catches a glimpse of a shocking
scene, just a glimpse but it is enough to convince Rachel that she witnessed a
crime. She feels compelled to tell the police and little by little, the truth
of who she is and what she really saw is revealed. Publishers Weekly gave this gripping debut a starred review.
ccident in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Tartt takes her time (almost
800 pages) telling the story of Theo and the painting that changed his life,
but to the reader, it is time well spent.
Published when he was 21 (!), it seemed to be the start of a long running
series (or so I hoped). After only five books, Kortya struck out in a totally
different direction, publishing three novels loaded with supernatural elements.
The Prophet (2012), which I recommend, was a return to his hardboiled
roots. His latest, Those Who Wish Me Dead ($16.00), tells the
story of Jace Wilson, a teenage witness to a murder. The plan to stash Jace in
a wilderness camp in Montana
for troubled teens while police hunt for the killers goes awry when the men
discover the boy’s whereabouts. Another recommended read!
has long been one of my favorite authors. I’ve enjoyed her award winning
stand-alones, including What the Dead
Know (2007) and After I’m Gone
(2014) but I’m partial to her series set in Baltimore. As Lawrence
Block uses New York City as more than
just a background in his Matt Scudder series, Lippmann keeps the city of Baltimore front and center in her Tess Monaghan mysteries. Introduced
in 1997 in Baltimore Blues ($14.99) which is now available in trade
paperback, Tess is one of those fictional characters that I liked right from
the start. An ex investigative reporter who lost her job due to down-sizing,
Tess turns her skills to the private detective business. In her first case she
is hired by a fellow rowing enthusiast accused of killing a local lawyer. Start with the first in the series and
keep reading, after a four year absence Tess returns in Hush, Hush ($26.99), due
Washington author Ellie
Alexander’s first book Meet Your Baker ($7.99) has just
been released. Set in a bakery in Ashland, Oregon, and featuring pastry chef
Jules Capshaw, this cozy mystery promises lots of food, the Oregon Shakespeare
Festival and of course, a murder. Recipes included!
Murder by the Book’s Book GroupLori L. Lake, meets the fourth Tuesday of the month at 6:30 p.m. Barbara Tom, one of the former owners of MBTB, chooses the book to be discussed each month. We meet at the Belmont Branch Library 1038 SE Cesar Chavez Blvd. January’s meeting will be held on Tuesday January 27 and we will discuss Norwegian by Night by Derek Miller.
4:30 p.m. On Wednesday January 21, they will be discussing County Line by
local author Bill Cameron.