Blog Archives

Review: Honky Tonk Samurai by Joe R. Lansdale

February 27, 2017
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This Hap and Leonard novel opens thusly: “I don’t think we ask for trouble, me and Leonard. It just finds us. It often starts casually, and then something comes loose and starts to rattle, like an unscrewed bolt on a carnival ride. No big thing at first, just a loose, rattling bolt, then the...

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Written Off by E.J. Copperman — Review

July 26, 2016
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This first in a new series by E.J. Copperman opens with the last two pages in the newest book by protagonist author Rachel Goldman, which is to be the fifth in her fictional Duffy Madison series. Duffy is the consultant to the county prosecutor’s office, whose forte is finding missing persons. Thinking back on...

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Double Switch by T.T. Monday: Review

May 18, 2016
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The book is equal parts mystery and baseball. Johnny Adcock is a terrific protagonist. He is a no-longer-young baseball player, 36 to be exact, fourteen years in the big leagues, his assigned role to come into a game in the eighth inning, primarily to face left-handed hitters (as he is a southpaw himself), and...

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The Buried by Brett Battles — Review

May 2, 2016
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This newest entry in the Jonathan Quinn series brings back many of the usual cast of characters: Nate, Quinn’s mentee and now an elite cleaner himself (the job entailing discreetly cleaning up crime scenes and the occasional body after the always possible bloodshed); their colleague, Daeng; and of course Orlando, the love of Quinn’s...

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And Sometimes I Wonder About You By Walter Mosley — Review

March 21, 2016
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Leonid Trotter McGill’s New York City office now officially answers its phone “McGill and Son detective agency,” a recent development. One of his sons, Twilliam (usually just “Twill”), is a new addition. His relationships with just about all his nearest and dearest being fraught with complexities: He hasn’t seen his father, Clarence, the charismatic...

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The Incidental Spy by Libby Fischer Hellmann — Review

February 4, 2016
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This newest book by Libby Fischer Hellmann, the author of a number of standalones as well her acclaimed Ellie Foreman and Georgia Davis mystery series, takes a different path entirely: a historical thriller. The protagonist is Lena Bentheim, who, in pre-War, 1935 Berlin, pledges her undying love to Josef Meyer, who reciprocates those emotions,...

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Shark Skin Suite by Tim Dorsey — review

December 26, 2015
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From the publisher: “Bottom feeders beware: The Sunshine State’s favorite psychotic killer and lovable Floridaphile, Serge Storms, has found a new calling, legal eagle, and he’s going to make a killing as a crusading attorney – – and star as a dashing lawyer on the big screen – – in this madcap escapade ....

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Hush Hush by Laura Lippman — review

December 20, 2015
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This is Laura Lippman’s 21st novel, and the 11th in the Tess Monaghan series. Tess is a former reporter and now private investigator in her late thirties, and she is called in by her mentor and close friend, attorney Tyner Gray, to assess the security needs of one of his clients, Melisandre Harris Dawes,...

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Ghost in the Wind by E.J. Copperman — review

December 13, 2015
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Alison Kerby returns in the 7th and newest in the Haunted Guesthouse Mystery series by E.J. Copperman. Alison Kerby, a single mother in her late thirties, runs a guesthouse in her childhood hometown of Harbor Haven, on the Jersey Shore [which she describes as ‘a charming but somewhat rickety Victorian’ into which she has...

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Make Me by Lee Child — review

November 7, 2015
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This is no spoiler: As this newest book from Lee Child opens, it is made clear from the first paragraph that someone has been killed, and his body is about to be buried. He is even identified: His name is Keever. And the mise en scene is apparently in the middle of nowhere –...

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The Question of the Unfamiliar Husband By E.J. Copperman/Jeff Cohen — review

November 3, 2015
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Samuel Hoenig, the protagonist and first-person narrator in the second book in the series (following the wonderful The Question of the Missing Head last year) by E.J. Copperman, is 30 years old and still living with his mother. His business, Questions Answered, was opened six months ago in Piscataway, New Jersey, and as the...

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A Billion Ways to Die by Chris Knopf — review

October 12, 2015
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As the novel opens, Arthur Cathcart and his partner and lover, Natsumi Fitzgerald are ensconced on their 36’ boat in Caribbean waters. They are indisputably unique protagonists: He, bald and in his forties, holds a Masters in Applied Mathematics, doing freelance market research; she, a tiny woman who is a former blackjack dealer, is...

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Truth Be Told by Hank Phillippi Ryan — review

September 20, 2015
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In a plot that uses still-living facets of the recent housing crash as a jumping-off point, Jane Ryland returns in this newest entry in the wonderful series by Hank Phillippi Ryan. After having been an award-winning investigative TV reporter before she lost her job a year ago for refusing to give up a source, Jane...

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Personal by Lee Child — review

August 16, 2015
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This is the 20th book in the Jack Reacher series and, no surprise, it is just as terrific as one would expect. Reacher at this point is a retired military cop. But as he soon discovers, “you can leave the army, but the army doesn’t leave you. Not always. Not completely.” As I seem...

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The Stranger on the Train By Abbie Taylor — review

April 27, 2015
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We first meet Emma Turner as she and her 13-month-old son, Ritchie, are returning from a trip across London to the East End. They are waiting for a train on the platform of a nearly-deserted Underground station. In a dizzying sequence of events, Emma suddenly somehow has lost her baby when a stranger, a...

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Inspector Specter by E. J. Copperman — review

April 11, 2015
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Alison Kerby returns in the newest Haunted Guesthouse Mystery series by E.J. Copperman. Alison, a single mother in her late thirties, runs a guesthouse in her childhood hometown of Harbor Haven, on the Jersey Shore, inhabited by her and her precocious eleven-year-old daughter, as well as Maxie Malone, Alison’s resident Internet expert, and Paul...

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The Setup Man by T. T. Monday — review

April 8, 2015
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The book is equal parts mystery and baseball. There is enough action in both aspects to keep the reader involved and turning pages quickly. Johnny Adcock is a terrific protagonist. He is a no-longer-young baseball player, 35 to be exact, thirteen years in the big leagues, his assigned role, as the title would suggest,...

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Murmurs of Insanity by Gerrie Ferris Finger — review

April 7, 2015
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This is the fourth and newest entry of the Moriah Dru/Richard Lake mystery series. Lake, a detective lieutenant in homicide with the Atlanta Police Department, asks Dru (her preferred form of address) to look into a matter involving his ex-wife’s half-brother, Baxter Carlisle, the dapper, handsome owner of several restaurants in Athens, Georgia. It...

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A Few Drops of Blood by Jan Merete Weiss — review

March 18, 2015
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Venice has Donna Leon and her Commissario Guido Brunetti, and now Naples has Jan Merete Weiss and her Captain Natalia Monte of the Carabinieri. The author brings fully to life the historic beauty of the city, as well as its rampant poverty and nearly total control by the Napolitan version of the American mafia...

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Wolf by Mo Hader — review

March 16, 2015
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The first several pages are in the third person, with pov being that of Amy, a five-year-old with verbiage typical of a child that age (a bit disconcertingly). Early on the reader is given hints about a place deep in the woods near Litton, Somerset, in the West Country of England, where a gruesome...

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