Tuesday, December 31, 2013

January's New Releases

Oh such a lovely crop of mysteries to start off 2014! In this latest offering, I see many familiar authors listed, and some not so familiar. One of my New Year's Resolutions is to try an author I haven't read before, someone outside my comfort zone. There are many interesting suspects listed below that will surely fit the bill. Read on!
  • The Murder House by Simon Beaufort
  • The Black Stilletto: Secrets & Lies [Black Stiletto] by Raymond Benson
  • From the Dead [Tom Thorne] by Mark Billingham
  • The Dead in Their Vaulted Arches [Flavia de Luce] by Alan Bradley
  • The Avalon Changer by Lillian Stewart Carl
  • This Dark Road to Mercy by Wiley Cash
  • Independent Study [The Testing] (YA) by Joelle Charbonneau
  • Eggs in a Casket [Cackleberry Club] by Laura Childs
  • That Old Black Magic [Piper Donovan] by Mary Jane Clark
  • Mr. Monk Gets on Board by Hy Conrad
  • Cell by Robin Cook
  • Shadows of Death [Dorothy Martin]by Jeanne M. Dams
  • This One Day [Max Tyger] by K.A. Delaney
  • The Last Dead Girl [David Loogan, prequel] by Harry Dolan
  • Tiger Shrimp Tango [Serge Storms] by Tim Dorsey
  • Apple Tree Yard by Louise Doughty
  • North of Boston by Elisabeth Elo
  • The Ways of Evil Men [Mario Silva] by Leighton Gage
  • Fear Nothing [D.D. Warren] by Lisa Gardner
  • Cry of the Children [Lambert & Hook] by J.M. Gregson
  • The Way of All Fish [Paul Giverney] by Martha Grimes
  • NYPD Puzzle [Puzzle Lady] by Parnell Hall
  • An Officer and a Spy by Robert Harris
  • The Cross of Vengeance [Burren] by Cora Harrison
  • Home of the Braised [White House Chef] by Julie Hyzy (Pb)
  • The Silence of the Library [Cat in the Stack]
    by Miranda James
  • Red 1-2-3 by John Katzenbach
  • Stay Alive by Simon Kernick
  • Robert B. Parker's Bull River [Cole & Hitch] by Robert Knott
  • Delivering Death [Riley Spartz] by Julie Kramer
  • River Road by Jayne Ann Krentz
  • The Web [graphic novel of Alex Delaware] by Jonathan Kellerman with Ande Parks & Michael Gaydos]
  • Finders Keepers Losers Weepers by Robert S. Levinson
  • Lake of Tears [Claire Watkins] by Mary Logue
  • Rogue Warrior: Curse of the Infidel by Richard Marcinko & Jim DeFelice
  • Worthy Brown's Daughter by Phillip Margolin
  • Dead Man's Fancy [Sean Stranahan by Keith McCafferty
  • Rebellion [Matthew Hawkwood] by James McGee
  • Show Me the Deadly Deer [Phoenix Smith] by Carolyn Mulford
  • Whispers of Vivaldi [Tito Amato] by Beverly Graves Myers
  • Bad Wolf [Oliver von Bodenstein] by Nele Neuhaus
  • Fair and Tender Ladies [Richard Nottingham] by Chris Nickson
  • Carthage by Joyce Carol Oates
  • Mayhem [Dr. Thomas Bond] by Sarah Pinborough
  • Saints of the Shadow Bible [John Rebus] by Ian Rankin
  • Moriarty Returns a Letter [Baker Street Letters] by Michael Robertson
  • Death Surge [Andy Horton] by Pauline Rowson
  • Dominion by C.J. Sansom
  • A Price to Pay [Iona Khan]by Chris Simms
  • Dead to Me [Scott & Bailey] by Cath Staincliffe
  • The Polaris Protocol [Pike Logan] by Brad Taylor
  • The Harlot's Tale [Bridget Hodgson] by Sam Thomas
  • The Pawnbroker [Charlie Henry] By Aimee and David Thurlo
  • Hunting Shadows [Ian Rutledge] by Charles Todd
  • The Fire Dance [Irene Huss] by Helene Tursten
  • In the Blood by Lisa Unger
  • Snapshot by Lis Wiehl
  • The Execution [Jeremy Fisk] by Dick Wolf
  • Standup Guy [Stone Barrington] by Stuart Woods
  • The A-List Murders [Hallie Marsh] by Merla Zellerbach

Thursday, December 19, 2013

A Little Holiday Homicide

Season’s greetings from Aunt Agatha!  Snuggle up with a cup of cocoa and a merry little murder:
  • Aunt Dimity's Christmas by Nancy Atherton
  • Ben Franklin and a Case of Christmas Murder by Robert Lee Hall
  • A Bitter Truth by Charles Todd
  • The Body in the Sleigh by Katherine Hall Page
  • Busy Body by M.C. Beaton
  • Candy Cane Murder, novellas by Joanna Fluke, Laura Levine, and Leslie Meier
  • Cat Crimes for the Holidays, edited by Martin H. Greenberg, Ed Gorman, and Larry Segriff
  • Cat Deck the Halls: a Joe Grey Mystery by Shirley Rousseau Murphy
  • A Cat on Jingle Bell Rock by Lydia Adamson
  • A Catered Christmas: a Mystery with Recipes by Isis Crawford
  • Christmas at The Mysterious Bookshop: 'tis the Season to be Deadly:  Stories of Mistletoe and Mayhem from 17 Masters of Suspense
  • A Christmas Oddyssey by Anne Perry
  • Christmas Cookie Murder by Leslie Meier
  • The Christmas Crimes at Puzzel Manor by Simon Brett
  • The Christmas Garden Affair by Ann Ripley
  • Christmas Mourning by Margart Maron
  • Christmas Stalkings: More Tales of Yuletide Murder
  • Classic Christmas Crime edited by Tim Heald
  • A Cold Christmas by Charlene Weir
  • The Con Artist of Catalina Island by Jennifer Colt
  • Corpus Christmas by Margaret Maron
  • A Crossworder's Gift by Nero Blanc
  • Dashing Through the Snow by Mary Higgins Clark
  • The Dons and Mr. Dickens: the Strange Case of the Oxford Christmas Plot by William J. Palmer
  • Envious Casca by Georgette Heyer
  • The Fat Man: a Tale of North Pole Noir by Ken Harmon
  • Frost at Christmas by R.D, Wingfield
  • The Gingerbread Bump-off: a Fresh-baked Mystery by L. J. Washburn
  • Gingerbread Cookie Murder by Joanne Fluke
  • Hard Christmas: a Cat Marsala Mystery by Barbara D"Amato
  • Hercule Poirot’s Christmas by Agatha Christie
  • Herald of Death by Kate Kingsbury
  • A Highland Christmas by M.C. Beaton
  • Holiday Grind by Cleo Coyle
  • Holmes for the Holidays edited by Martin H. Greenberg, Jon L. Lellenberg, and Carol-Lynn Waugh
  • I Am Half-sick of Shadows by Alan Bradley
  • Inspector Proby's Christmas by John Gano
  • A Killer’s Christmas in Wales by Elizabeth J. Duncan
  • Kissing Christmas Goodbye: an Agatha Raisin Mystery by M.C. Beaton
  • A Kudzu Christmas: Twelve Mysterious Tales edited by Jim Gilbert & Gail Waller
  • The Last Noel by Heather Graham
  • Mad as the Dickens by Toni L.P. Kelner
  • Merry Christmas, Alex Cross by James Patterson
  • Merry, Merry Ghost by Carolyn Hart
  • The Midnight Before Christmas by William Bernhardt
  • A Midnight Clear by Kathy Hogan Trocheck
  • Mistletoe and Murder by Carola Dunn
  • More Holmes for the Holidays edited by Martin H. Greenberg, Jon L. Lellenberg, and Carol-Lynn Waugh
  • Murder for Christmas edited by Thomas Godfrey
  • Murder for Christmas and Three Other Great Mysteries by Agatha Christie
  • Plum Pudding Murder by Joanne Fluke
  • The Queene's Christmas by Karen Harper
  • A Rumpole Chrismas by John Mortimer
  • Santa Clawed by Rita Mae Brown & Sneaky Pie Brown
  • Santa Cruise by Mary Higgins Clark
  • Shakespeare's Christmas by Charlaine Harris
  • Six Geese A-Slaying by Donna Andrews
  • The Snow White Christmas Cookie by David Handler
  • Sweet Revenge by Diane Mott Davidson
  • The Twelve Clues of Christmas by Rhys Bowen
  • The Twelve Deaths of Christmas by Marian Babson
  • A Wee Christmas Homicide by Kaitlyn Dunnett

Monday, December 9, 2013

Jack Reacher Returns to the Screen

According to Deadline Hollywood, Tom Cruise is moving forward on a Jack Reacher sequel to the 2012 film that was based on Lee Child's One Shot. Why, you may ask,  after that raucous the film caused among Jack Reacher fans who protested the casting of Tom Cruise the first time around. In Hollywood, it all boils down to money, yes? A film that costs $57 million to make and grosses $218 million worldwide makes studio heads talk sequels.

The new project is adapting Never Go Back, the latest Reacher book that was released earlier this fall. The thing to keep in mind...books and movies are two very different animals. And the book is almost always better!

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Ring Out 2013 with This New Batch of Mysteries

As we hurtle towards the end of 2013, pick up one of these new December releases to enjoy as you curl up by the fire with a lovely cup of tea or hot cocoa. We have Tom Clancy's last Jack Ryan thriller, posthumously published after Clancy's October passing. Michael Connelly's new Mickey Haller mystery is released this month. Perhaps you'll find a new author to enjoy as well as catch up on a favorite author's latest outing. Enjoy!

  •  The Purity of Vengeance [Department Q] by Jussi Adler-Olsen
  • The Midas Murders [Pieter Van In] by Pieter Aspe
  • Murder on the Orient Espresso [Maggy Thorsen] by Sandra Balzo
  • Once Upon a Lie by Maggie Barbieri
  • Chilled to the Bone [Gunnhilder] by Quentin Bates
  • Ten Lords A-Leaping [Father Christmas] by C.C. Benison
  • Reel Stuff [Skip Moore & James Lessor] by Don Bruns
  • Command Authority [Jack Ryan] by Tom Clancy & Mark Greaney
  • Leave Tomorrow Behind [Stella Crown] by Judy Clemens
  • The Gods of Guilt [Mickey Haller] by Michael Connelly
  • Billionaire Blend [Coffeehouse] by Cleo Coyle
  • Heirs of the Body [Daisy Dalrymple] by Carola Dunn
  • A Dangerous Deceit by Marjorie Eccles
  • The Invisible Code [Bryant & May] by Christopher Fowler
  • Electra [Delphic Women] by Kerry Greenwood
  • Hazardous Duty [Presidential Agent] by W.E.B. Griffin & William E. Butterworth IV
  • Going Dark [Thorn] by James W. Hall
  • The Red Pole of Macau [Ava Lee] by Ian Hamilton
  • Murder as a Second Language [Claire Malloy] by Joan Hess
  • The Death Trade [Sean Dillon] by Jack Higgins
  • Lying with Strangers by Jonnie Jacobs
  • Noose by Bill James
  • The Black Life [Alex Mavros] by Paul Johnston
  • The Funeral Owl [Philip Dryden] by Jim Kelly
  • The Death Box [Carson Ryder & Harry Nautilus] by Jack Kerley
  • Innocence by Dean Koontz
  • In Retrospect by Ellen Larson
  • Rosarito Beach [Kay Hamilton] by M.A. Lawson
  • The Murder Code by Steve Mosby
  • The Spook Lights Affair [Carpenter & Quincannon] by Marcia Muller & Bill Pronzini
  • Rosemary and Crime [Piper Prescott] by Gail Oust
  • A Christmas Hope by Anne Perry
  • Scandal at Six [Lois Meade] by Ann Purser
  • The Prince of Risk by Christopher Reich
  • Hunted by Karen Robards
  • Innocent Blood [Order of the Sanguines] by James Rollins & Rebecca Cantrell
  • Dark Omens [Libertus] by Rosemary Rowe
  • Covenant with Hell [Medieval Mystery] by Priscilla Royal
  • Shoot the Woman First [Crissa Stone] by Wallace Stroby

Friday, November 22, 2013

A Murder for All Seasons

If you are a fan of Agatha Christie or Louise Penny’s Inspector Gamache series, you must delve into the delightful English village of Nether Monkslip. Cleric Max Tudor, a former spy for MI5 (and village heartthrob), has to put aside his sermon-writing to solve some troubling murders in his idyllic little village.

G.M Malliet’s quirky characters, intricate puzzles, and wry humor make this an award-winning series. Max Tudor is first introduced in Wicked Autumn. The vicar has settled peacefully in the community populated by yoga practitioners, New Agers, artists and crafters, and other escapees from urban life. But when murder raises its ugly head, Max puts his former life skills to work.

The series continues with A Fatal Winter, where Max investigates two murders at Chedrow Castle following a house party. A group of greedy relatives present the sleuthing vicar a multitude of possible suspects.

Pagan Spring is the most recently released in this charming series. While Max's love interest, Awena Owen, is out of town Max takes time away from writing his Easter sermon to attend a dinner party for the famous actor Thaddeus Bottle, who has recently retired to Nether Monkslip. But what a shock when the unfortunate Bottle is found dead in his bed the next morning. And of course no one is sorry to see him permanently retired, thus leaving open a wide pool of suspects.

These are the perfect cozy reads for a chilly winter’s night. I've already got plans to enjoy the last two in the series over the Thanksgiving holidays!

Friday, November 15, 2013

Once More, the Game is Afoot!

Fans of the Masterpiece Mystery hit series, Sherlock, have been awaiting the return of everyone's favorite consulting detective. Well, mark your calendars! Sherlock returns to PBS on January 19, 2014. Of course, the dynamic duo have hardly been on vacation. Benedict Cumberbatch was seen recently in Star Trek Into Darkness, The Fifth Estate, The Hobbit, just  to name a few. Martin Freeman, aka Dr. John Watson, has been busy filming The Hobbit Trilogy. The upcoming episodes of the new season of Sherlock are The Empty Hearse, The Sign of Three, and The Last Vow.

Other Sherlock Holmes projects coming up include a new PBS documentary How Sherlock Changed the World: His Impact on Real-Life Criminal and Forensic Investigation; a third installment of the Robert Downey, Jr/Jude Law Sherlock Holmes franchise is said to be in the works; and Ian McKellen is set to portray the elderly Homes in the film adaptation of A Slight Trick of the Mind from Mitch Cullin's novel.

Several new Sherlockian title are due out in the next few months. Watch for Sons of Moriarty and More Stories of Sherlock Holmes, edited by Loren D. Estleman; The Strand Magazine & Sherlock Homes by Robert Veld; and The Sherlock Files: The Official Companion to the Hit Television Series by Guy Adams.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

If you are a fan of Dan Brown or Steve Barry, may I recommend the new thriller by bestselling German author Oliver Pötzsch, admirably translated by Anthea Bell. The Ludwig Conspiracy blends modern day adventure and intrigue with a compelling historical thriller. You may be unfamiliar with the tale of King Ludwig II, the Fairy Tale King of Bavaria, but you will instantly recognize Neuschwanstein, one of his famous castles that was the inspiration for Disney’s iconic castle.

The story of Ludwig, who is sometimes referred to as “Mad King Ludwig,” is a mystery in itself. Remembered today for the string of tourist attraction castles in Bavaria, Ludwig was deposed in 1886 after being declared insane by a psychiatrist who had never even examined him. Soon after, he drowned in waist-deep water. Certainly a suspicious circumstance.

From the moment an encoded diary and artifacts fall into the hands of rare-book dealer Steven Lukas, he knows that it will bring him more misery than money. Danger dogs his footsteps as he tries to decipher the diary with the help of an art detective, Sara Lengfeld. They investigate three of Ludwig’s castles searching for clues to help crack the diary’s code, always trying to outrun a mysterious gang of thugs and a group of Ludwig’s fanatical followers.

As Steven slowly deciphers the diary, he’s caught up in the exciting story unfolding in 19th century Bavaria. The diary’s author, a young confidante of King Ludwig, uncovers a nefarious political plot to remove the king from power. Trusting no one, he barely escapes with his life as he makes his way back to the castle to warn the king.

Pötzsch spent many years as a radio personality and a screenwriter for Bavarian public television. His Hangman’s Daughter books have sold over half a million copies in English. He lives in Munich with his family.

Monday, November 4, 2013

November's New Releases

I was not happy to read that the TNT series of King and Maxwll was cancelled after only one season. I rather enjoyed it! Too bad. At least the characters still live in David Baldacci's books.Also interesting in this month's crop of new releases is Dashiell Hammett's collection, The Hunter and Other Stories. The book is edited by Richard Layman and Hammett's granddaughter, Julie Rivett. Happy Reading!

  • King and Maxwell [Sean King & Michelle Maxwell] by David Baldacci
  • The Price of Innocence [Theresa MacLean] by Lisa Black
  • Mrs. Jeffries and the Merry Gentlemen [Mrs. Jeffries] by Emily Brightwell
  • Purgatory [Jack Taylor] by Ken Bruen
  • The Missing Dough [Pizza Lovers] by Chris Cavender
  • Gone in a Flash [E.J. Pugh] by Susan Rogers Cooper
  • Dust [Kay Scarpetta] by Patricia Cornwell
  • Mirage [Oregon Files] by Clive Cussler & Jack Du Brul
  • Takedown Twenty [Stephanie Plum] by Janet Evanovich
  • Rituals [Faye Longchamp] by Mary Anna Evans
  • An Old Betrayal [Charles Lenox] by Charles Finch
  • Nowhere Nice [Nick Reid & Desmond] by Rick Gavin
  • Murder by Sunlight: The Charity Quilt [Quilted] by Barbara Graham
  • Cassandra [Delphic Women] by Kerry Greenwood 
  • Found [Matt Royal] by H. Terrell Griffin
  • The Hunter and Other Stories by Dashiell Hammett, edited by Richard Layman & Julie M. Rivett
  • For Better or Worsted [Crochet] by Betty Hechtman
  • Hidden Heritage [Lottie Albright] by Charlotte Hinger
  • Hostage [Bishop/SCU] by Kay Hooper
  • Hardcastle’s Traitors [Ernest Hardcastle] by Graham Ison
  • Missing [Casey Jansen] by C.T. Jorgensen
  • Our Picnics in the Sun by Morag Joss
  • Death of a Nightingale [Nina Borg] by Lene Kaaberbøl & Agnete Friis
  • Cries of the Lost [Arthur Cathcart] by Chris Knopf
  • Burnt Black [Cliff St. James] by Ed Kovacs
  • A Nasty Piece of Work by Robert Littell
  • Broken (YA) by CJ Lyons
  • Raven's Eye [Brock & Kolla] by Barry Maitland
  • The Minor Adjustment Beauty Salon [No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency] by Alexander McCall Smith
  • Sins of the Flesh [Carmine Delmonico] by Colleen McCullough
  • The King’s Corrodian [Gil Cunningham] by Pat McIntosh
  • Dandy Gilver and a Bothersome Number of Corpses [Dandy Gilver] by Catriona McPherson 
  • Rosemary and Crime [Piper Prescott] by Gail Oust
  • Marbeck and the King-in-Waiting [Martin Marbeck] by John Pilkington
  • White Fire [Aloysius Pendergast] by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child
  • No Man’s Nightingale [Reginald Wexford] by Ruth Rendell
  • Beyond Redress [Harry Brock] by Kinley Roby
  • Die-Off [John Marquez] by Kirk Russell
  • The Good Boy by Theresa Schwegel
  • Louise’s Dilemma [Louise Pearlie] by Sarah R. Shaber
  • The Big Fiddle [Michael Angel] by Roger Silverwood
  • Tatiana [Arkady Renko] by Martin Cruz Smith
  • Through the Evil Days [Clare Fergusson & Russ Van Alstyne] by Julia Spencer-Fleming
  • Ghost Medicine [Ella Clah] by Aimée & David Thurlo
  • Crimson Rose [Kit Marlowe] by M.J. Trow
  • Solid Citizens [Marcus Corvinus] by David Wishart
  • Deadly Pleasures edited by Martin Edwards
  • USA Noir: Best of the Akashic Noir Series edited by Johnny Temple

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Who will Play Harry Bosch?

It's always a tricky situation when a beloved literary character is brought to the screen. Remember the outcry over Tom Cruise as Jack Reacher? There have been stirrings over the filming of Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch books. Remember, Connelly had to go to court to regain his rights to the Bosch books from Paramount Studios. Once that was accomplished, he began pitching to cable television last year.

Mystery Magazine's blog has revealed that veteran character actor Titus Welliver is set to play the iconic detective in Amazon's first drama series,  Bosch. While you may not recognize the name, you will certainly recognize the face. His very extensive resume lists almost every major TV series, such as White Collar, Grimm, NCIS, The Good Wife, Sons of Anarchy, and Lost (to name a few) and a number of feature films such as Argo, Promised Land, and The Town. 

I think this could be very good casting indeed. No word yet when the series will air. Connelly co-wrote the pilot for the series with Eric Overmeyer. In the meantime, Michael Connelly's next novel, The Gods of Guilt, is a Mickey Haller book and will be released in the US this December.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Behind the Scenes with Michael Kitchen in Foyle's War

I really enjoyed the latest installment of Foyle's War. It's always such a pleasure watching Michael Kitchen's portrayal of the enigmatic Christopher Foyle.

Here is a short video giving you a glimpse into the making of this popular series.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Top 100 Mysteries

If you follow this blog, you may have noticed a reduction of posts over the past month or so. As it happens, Aunt Agatha's real job got in the way. This year, the Burbank Public Library has been celebrating a century of service and Aunt Agatha's alter ego was very busy preparing for the year's big event. If you are in the Los Angeles area this weekend, plan to stop by the Burbank Public Library on Saturday, October 5 between 10 AM and 3 PM for our How-To Festival.

In the meantime, we've compiled a list of the top 100 mysteries checked out at the Burbank Public Library this year. Mystery readers in Burbank do have excellent taste!

1.   The girl who kicked the hornet's nest / Stieg Larsson
2.   The girl with the dragon tattoo / Stieg Larsson
3.   The lost symbol : a novel / Dan Brown
4.   The girl who played with fire / Stieg Larsson
5.   Nine dragons : a novel / Michael Connelly
6.   The brass verdict : a novel / Michael Connelly
7.   Gone girl : a novel / Gillian Flynn
8.   Finger lickin' fifteen / Janet Evanovich
9.   The scarecrow : a novel / Michael Connelly
10. The reversal : a novel / Michael Connelly
11. Gone tomorrow : a Reacher novel / Lee Child
12. Fearless fourteen : a Stephanie Plum novel / Janet Evanovich
13. 61 hours : a Reacher novel / Lee Child
14. The fifth witness : a novel / Michael Connelly
15. The hard way : a Jack Reacher novel / Lee Child
16. Sizzling sixteen / Janet Evanovich
17. The confession / John Grisham
18. Chasing darkness : an Elvis Cole novel / Robert Crais
19. 7th heaven / James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
20. The drop : a novel / Michael Connelly
21. The 8th confession / James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
22. Alex Cross's trial / by James Patterson and Richard Dilallo
23. The postcard killers : a novel / by James Patterson and Liza Mar
24. Cross country : a novel / James Patterson
25. Nothing to lose : a Jack Reacher novel / Lee Child
26. Dead in the family / Charlaine Harris
27. The 9th judgment / James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
28. Don't blink : a novel / by James Patterson and Howard Roughan
29. Worth dying for : a Reacher novel / Lee Child
30. Deliver us from evil / David Baldacci
31. The affair : a Reacher novel / Lee Child
32. 10th anniversary / James Patterson and Maxine Paetro
33. Inferno : a novel / Dan Brown
34. The first rule : a Joe Pike novel / Robert Crais
35. All together dead / Charlaine Harris
36. Worst case : a novel / James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge
37. The overlook : a novel / by Michael Connelly
38. The shadow of the wind / Carlos Ruiz Zafón
39. Lost light : a novel / Michael Connelly
40. V is for vengeance / Sue Grafton
41. Echo Park : a novel / by Michael Connelly
42. The curious incident of the dog in the night-time / Mark Haddon
43. The professional / Robert B. Parker
44. Long lost / Harlan Coben
45. Hell's corner / David Baldacci
46. Swimsuit : a novel / by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro
47. Explosive eighteen : a Stephanie Plum novel / Janet Evanovich
48. Sail : a novel / by James Patterson and Howard Roughan
49. U is for undertow / Sue Grafton
50. Black Hills / Nora Roberts
51. Bad luck and trouble : a Jack Reacher novel / Lee Child
52. Divine justice / David Baldacci
53. Plum lucky / Janet Evanovich
54. The narrows : a novel / by Michael
55. Tough customer / Sandra Brown
56. Hold tight / by Harlan Coben
57. Extreme measures : a thriller / Vince Flynn
58. Heat lightning / John Sandford
59. Wicked prey / John Sandford
60. The innocent / David Baldacci
61. Evidence : an Alex Delaware novel / Jonathan Kellerman
62. The poet / Michael Connelly
63. Zero day : a novel / David Baldacci
64. Smokin' seventeen : a Stephanie Plum novel / Janet Evanovich
65. Void moon / Michael Connelly
66. The Mercedes coffin / Faye Kellerman
67. Your heart belongs to me / Dean Koontz
68. True blue / David Baldacci
69. The closers : a novel / by Michael Connelly
70. The big sleep by Raymond Chandler
71. Run for your life : a novel / by James Patterson & Michael Ledwi
72. The gate house / Nelson DeMille
73. Private : Los Angeles, New York, San Diego, London, Chicago, Paris / James Patterson
74. I, Alex Cross : a novel / James Patterson
75. Blindman's bluff / Faye Kellerman
76. The sixth man / David Baldacci
77. T is for trespass / Sue Grafton
78. The Lincoln lawyer : a novel / by Michael Connelly
79. Dead and gone / Charlaine Harris
80. The black box : a novel / Michael Connelly
81. In the woods / Tana French
82. Fire and ice : a Beaumont and Brady novel / J. A. Jance
83. A darkness more than night : a novel / by Michael Connelly
84. Private games : [a novel] / by James Patterson and Mark Sullivan
85. Deception : an Alex Delaware novel / Jonathan Kellerman
86. Look again / Lisa Scottoline
87. Killing floor / Lee Child
88. Chasing the dime : a novel / by Michael Connelly
89. What the night knows : a novel / Dean Koontz
90. Guilty wives : a novel / by James Patterson and David Ellis
91. Goodnight, Irene / Jan Burke
92. A wanted man : a Jack Reacher novel / Lee Child
93. The lion / Nelson DeMille
94. The neighbor / Lisa Gardner
95. The last coyote / Michael Connelly
96. Cemetery dance / Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child
97. True detectives : a novel / Jonathan Kellerman
98. Stranger in paradise / Robert B. Parker
99. From dead to worse / Charlaine Harris


100. The search / Nora Roberts


Thursday, October 3, 2013

October's New Crop of Mysteries

October is here and the chilly nights are perfect for curling up with good mystery. This crop has a little something for everyone, whether you're looking for comforting cozy or a thrilling suspense yarn. Read and enjoy!
  • Secrets [Naomi Blake]
    by Jane A. Adams
  • Loot [Buster Hightower] by Gary Alexander
  • Behind the Shattered Glass [Lady Emily Ashton] by Tasha Alexander
  • Duck the Halls [Meg Langslow] by Donna Andrews
  • Close-up on Murder [Murder She Wrote] by Jessica Fletcher & Donald Bain
  • Solo [James Bond continuation] by William Boyd
  • The Litter of the Law [Mrs. Murphy] by Rita Mae Brown
  • The Star of Istanbul [Christopher Marlowe Cobb] by Robert Olen Butler
  • The Chocolate Book Bandit [Chocoholic] by JoAnna Carl
  • Skating Under the Wire [Rebecca Robbins] by Joelle Charbonneau
  • Gilt Trip [Scrapbooking] by Laura Childs
  • Blood and Stone [Tom Mariner] by Chris Collett
  • Ask Not [Nate Heller] by Max Allan Collins
  • A Catered Christmas Cookie Exchange [Mystery with Recipes] by Isis Crawford
  • The October List by Jeffery Deaver
  • Outlaw by Ten DEkker
  • Never Laugh as a Hearse Goes By [Penny Brannigan]
    by Elizabeth J. Duncan
  • The Tilted World by Tom Franklin & Beth Ann Fennelly
  • Jacob's Oath by Martin Fletcher
  • Just One Evil Act [Thomas Lynley] by Elizabeth George
  • The Case of the Love Commandos [Vish Puri] by Tarquin Hall
  • Ghost Gone Wild [Bailey Ruth Raeburn] by Carolyn Hart
  • Taken by the Wind [Jane Lawless] by Ellen Hart
  • NightZone [Posadas County] by Steven F. Havill
  • Spider Woman's Daughter [Leaphorn & Chee series continued] by Anne Hillerman
  • Dead Man's Time [Roy Grace] by Peter James
  • Silencing Eve [Eve Duncan] by Iris Johansen
  • Spirit of Steamboat [Walt Longmire novella]
    by Craig Johnson
  • Rasputin's Shadow [Sean Reilly] by Raymond Khoury
  • Cries of the Lost [Arthur Cathcart] by Chris Knopf
  • Triptych by Margit Liesche
  • Top Down: A Novel of the Kennedy Assassination by Jim Lehrer
  • Peak Season for Murder [Leigh Girard] by Gail Lukasik
  • Pagan Spring [Max Tudor] by G.M. Malliet
  • Crooked Numbers [Raymond Donne] by Tim O'Mara
  • Three Can Keep a Secret [Joe Gunther] by Archer Mayor
  • Cross and Burn [Carol Jordan & Tony Hill] by Val McDermid
  • The Study of Murder [Muirteach] by Susan McDuffie
  • The Monster of Florence [Salvatore Guarnaccia] by Magdalen Nabb
  • Police [Harry Hole] by Jo Nesbo
  • Critical Mass [V.I Warshawski] by Sara Paretsky
  • Silent Night [final Spenser manuscript completed by Helen Brann] by Robert B. Parker
  • The Double [Spero Lucas] by George Pelecanos
  • Blowback [Vanessa Pierson] by Valerie Plame & Sarah Lovett
  • Dry Bones [Fintan Dunne] by Peter Quinn
  • Storm Front [Virgil Flowers] by John Sandford
  • Accused [Rosato & Associates] by Lisa Scottoline
  • Mortal Bonds [Jason Stafford] by Michael Sears
  • The Alligator Man by James Sheehan
  • The Abominable by Dan Simmons
  • Vicious Circle [Hector Cross] by Wilbur Smith
  • Blackstone and the Endgame [Sam Blackstone] by Sally Spencer
  • Outlaw [Robin Monarch] by Mark Sullivan
  • The Land of Dreams [Lance Hansen] by Vidar Sunstol
  • The Sleep Room by F.R. Tallis
  • Now You See It [Grace Street] by Jane Tesh
  • Identical [Kindle County] by Scott Turow
  • Shadow of the Alchemist [Crispin Guest] by Jeri Westerson
  • Dark City [Repairman Jack: The Early Years Trilogy] by F. Paul Wilson
  • Doing Hard Time [Stone Barrington] by Stuar Woods
  • Inherit the Dead (SS) edited by Jonathan Santlofer

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

R.I.P. Tom Clancy

Bestselling author Tom Clancy has died at age 66 at John Hopkins Hospital near his home in Baltimore. His military post-Cold War espionage thriller novels launched the Jack Ryan film series: The Hunt for Red October, Patriot Games, Clear and Present Danger, and The Sum of All Fears.

Another film is due out this Christmas. Based on Clancy's desk-jockey CIA hero Jack Ryan, the film, Jack Ryan: Shadow One is directed by Kenneth Branagh and stars Chris Pine.

But Tom Clancy is best known for his compelling thrillers; books impossible to put down once begun. Clancy's latest novel, Command Authority, is scheduled for a December 2013 release. Mr. Clancy will surely be missed.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Awards Given at Bouchercon

Congratulations to all the honorees announced at Bouchercon, held this year in Albany, New York.


  • Best Novel: The Blackhouse, by Peter May
  • Best First Novel: A Killing in the Hills, by Julia Keller
  • Best Paperback Original: Mr. Churchill's Secretary, by Susan Elia McNeal
  • Best Thriller: The Fallen Angel, by Daniel Silva
  • Best Mystery Novel: The Beautiful Mystery by Louise Penny
  • Best First Mystery Novel: Don't Ever Get Old by Daniel Friedman
  • Best Mystery Non-Fiction: Books to Die For: The Worlds's Greatest Mystery Writers on the World's Greatest Mystery Novels, edited by John Connolly and Declan Burke
  • Best Mystery Short Story: "The Lord is My Shamus" by Barb Goffman in Chesapeake Crimes: This Job is Murder
  • Sue Feder Historical Memorial Award: An Unmarked Grave by Charles Todd
  • Best Novel: The Beautiful Mystery by Louise Penny
  • Best First Novel: The Expats, by Chris Pavone
  • Best Paperback Original: Big Maria, by Johnny Shaw
  • Best Short Story: "Mischief in Mesopotamia," by Dana Cameron (Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, November 2012)
  • Best Critical Non-Fiction WorkBooks to Die For: The Worlds's Greatest Mystery Writers on the World's Greatest Mystery Novels, edited by John Connolly and Declan Burke
  • Lifetime Achievement Award: Sue Grafton
  • The David Thompson Special Services Award: Marv Lachman 

    Sunday, September 15, 2013

    What We've Been Reading...

    I have been waiting to read Louise Penny's next mystery, How the Light Gets In, for the better part of a year. It hasn't helped my peace of mind any that I decided to follow her on Facebook and have therefore been receiving tantalizing quotes and countdowns for months. I have been a fan since Aunt Agatha introduced me to the first in Penny's series about Chief Inspector Armand Gamache and the town of Three Pines, just south of Montreal; this one is number nine. These are complex, thoughtful, smart mysteries, with a lot of back story and a large cast of characters to go with each one, and at the center of them is Gamache and his young and dashing compatriot, Inspector Jean Guy Beauvoir.

    In the past couple of books, however, Beauvoir has lost his joie de vivre. After an injury sustained during a raid, he became addicted to pain pills, but his real malady is a loss of faith in himself and in his mentor, Gamache. At the end of the last book, the two had a parting of ways, and Gamache is desolate that Jean Guy has gone over to the side of his enemy in the Sûreté du Québec, Chief Superintendent Sylvain Francoeur. Along with this loss, Gamache has had to watch the systematic destruction of his department, as his homicide team has been split up and reassigned elsewhere and he has been isolated by Francoeur's faction. This targeting of Gamache supposedly harks back to a time in the distant past when he refused to cooperate with a massive police cover-up and instead arrested the ringleader, one of his superior officers. But we quickly realize in this book that not all of the evil conspiracy can be relegated to the past....

    As usual, this is a multi-layered story, which also presents a "regular" murder mystery to be solved while all of the above is simultaneously going on, and this mystery takes us back to the town of Three Pines, where we revisit the querulous poet Ruth, the B&B and bistro owners Gabri and Olivier, the painter Claire, the bookstore owner Myrna, and all our favorite personalities from volumes past. A friend of Myrna's was due to visit for Christmas but never showed up, and Gamache immediately discovers that what looks like a simple, perhaps random murder also has ties to the distant past and a celebrated group of sisters born during the Great Depression, of whom Constance, the victim, was the last.

    You may be getting the idea that this is definitely not a stand-alone book, and you are right; if you picked up this one without reading the series, you would be utterly lost. Don't let that deter you, though, because if you don't read this series from the beginning and persevere to the end, you will have missed a true feast of good mystery writing--or should I just say good storytelling? I think Penny is a writer to be enjoyed whether you love mysteries or not. I so look forward to each of these, and I think I will now have to join you in starting over with book one,Still Life, to pass the time while waiting for the next! I can't think of a place I would rather be for the next few months of reading than in Three Pines. (Actually, I'd like to be sitting in the bistro eating and drinking some of their delectable creations--a warning that when reading this series, you will suddenly develop a hankering for crepes, fine cheeses, pain au chocolat, and a variety of esoteric liqueurs!)

    Saturday, September 7, 2013

    Back from vacation

    With a week off, I had a chance to get in some reading while recharging my batteries. Of course coming back to work right after Labor Day...well, it was like I never left! I discovered a new (to me) author whom I have been enjoying tremendously. It's always a pleasure to find a new author, especially one with a good-size backlist.

    I had seen an ad online for Carla Neggers' new romantic suspense novel, Declans's Cross, and I saw it was partially set in Ireland. Now I do have a soft spot for the Emerald Isle, and wondered why I had never come across Ms. Neggers books before. While I was waiting for the new release, I dived into some of her past novels and have been devouring them ever since!

    I especially enjoyed her Boston Police/FBI series. The cast of characters, the settings, a bit of romance and the suspense were all very satisfying.

    I have Declan's Cross in my hot little hand and will be enjoying it this weekend! In the meantime, here's the
    description of Neggers' new book:

    For marine biologist Julianne Maroney, two weeks in tiny Declan’s Cross on the south Irish coast is a chance to heal her broken heart. She doesn’t expect to attract the attention of FBI agents Emma Sharpe and Colin Donovan-especially since a Donovan is the reason for her broken heart.

    Emma and Colin are in Ireland for their own personal retreat. Colin knows he’s a reminder of everything Julianne wants to escape, but something about her trip raises his suspicion. Emma, an art crimes expert, is also on edge. Of all the Irish villages Julianne could choose…why Declan’s Cross?

    Ten years ago, a thief slipped into a mansion in Declan’s Cross. Emma’s grandfather, a renowned art detective, investigated, but the art stolen that night has never been recovered and the elusive thief never caught.

    From the moment Julianne sets foot on Irish soil, everything goes wrong. The well-connected American diver who invited her to Ireland has disappeared. And now Emma and Colin are in Declan’s Cross asking questions.

    As a dark conspiracy unfolds amid the breathtaking scenery of Declan’s Cross, the race is on to stop a ruthless killer…and the stakes have never been more personal for Emma and Colin.

    If you have enjoyed the books by Sandra Brown, Kay Hooper, or Catherine Coulter, you'll like Carla Neggers.

    Like to cook...and read mysteries?

    Aunt Agatha's alter ego is Saturday's guest blogger on Mystery Lovers' Kitchen,, a fun blog hosted by a great group of mystery writers who like to cook up some recipes along with their crimes. Check it out!

    Friday, August 30, 2013

    New for September

    Here are the new releases for September. As a heads up, author John Billlheimer will be visiting the Burbank Public Library in November to discuss his new book.

    The Darling Dahlias and the Texas Star [Darling Dahlias] by Susan Wittig Albert
    Black Skies [Erlendur] by Arnaldur Indridason
    The Red Queen Dies by Frankie Y. Bailey
    Cut to the Bone [Body Farm] by Jefferson Bass
    Something Borrowed, Someone Dead [Agatha Raisin] by M.C. Beaton
    A Blind Goddess [Billy Boyle] by James R. Benn
    A Player To Be Maimed Later [Lloyd Keaton] by John Billheimer
    Catch and Release by Lawrence Block
    Robert B. Parker’s Damned If You Do [Jesse Stone] by Michael Brandman
    Deadline by Sandra Brown
    Never Go Back [Jack Reacher] by Lee Child
    Killing Custer [Wind River] by Margaret Coel
    The Final Cut by Catherine Coulter & J.T. Ellison
    The Mayan Secrets [Fargo Adventure] by Clive Cussler & Thomas Perry
    Deadly Diamonds [Michael Knight] by John F. Dobbyn
    Seven for a Secret [Timothy Wilde] by Lyndsay Faye
    The Devil Laughed [Moriah Dru & Richard Lake] by Gerrie Ferris Finger
    Dick Francis’s Refusal [Sid Halley] by Felix Francis
    W Is for Wasted [Kinsey Millhone] by Sue Grafton
    The Return  by Michael Gruber
    The Devil’s Moon [Brighton] by Peter Guttridge
    Hearts of Sand [Gregor Demarkian] by Jane Haddam
    Dressed to Kill [Kate O’Donnell] by Patricia Hall
    Murder with Mercy [Ellie Quicke] by Veronica Heley
    Worthless Remains [Chris Honeysett] by Peter Helton
    Killing a Cold One [Woods Cop] by Joseph Heywood
    Strangled in Paris [Victor Legris] by Claude Izner
    Second Watch [J.P. Beaumont] by J.A. Jance
    Detroit Shuffle [Will Anderson] by D.E. Johnson
    Bitter River [Bell Elkins] by Julia Keller
    A Darkness Descending [Sandro Cellini] by Christobel Kent
    The Bones of Paris by Laurie R. King
    The Thicket by Joe R. Lansdale
    Then We Take Berlin by John Lawton
    Alex [Camille Verhoeven ] by Pierre Lemaître
    Nightmare Range: The Collected Sueno and Bascom Short Stories by Martin Limón
    Beloved Enemy [Jack McClure] by Eric Van Lustbader
    Execution [Harry Tate] by Adrian Magson
    Christmas Carol Murder [Lucy Stone] by Leslie Meier
    The Ludwig Conspiracy by Oliver Pötzsch
    The Sound and the Furry [Chet and Bernie] by Spencer Quinn
    Thankless in Death [Eve Dallas] by J.D. Robb
    The Tenth Witness [Henri Poincaré prequel] by Leonard Rosen
    The Shogun’s Daughter [Sano Ichiro] by Laura Joh Rowland
    The Wrong Girl [Jane Ryland] by Hank Phillippi Ryan
    Others of My Kind by James Sallis
    The Third Eye by Jacqueline Seewald
    Mykonos After Midnight [Andreas Kaldis] by Jeffrey Siger
    Dark Passage [Hannah Ives] by Marcia Talley
    Dime If I Know [Cleopatra Jones] by Maggie Toussaint
    Deceived [Hannah Smith] by Randy Wayne White