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Unusual Suspects

Jessica Jones Wrote a Good Thriller, and More!

Hi fellow mystery fans! If winter has found you I hope you’re warm and getting plenty of reading-under-a-cozy-blanket.

Great Puzzle Mystery:

Salvation of a Saint (Detective Galileo #5) by Keigo Higashino, Alexander O. Smith (Translator): Another great Japanese mystery–this one isn’t dark (like most I’ve read) but does have a puzzle mystery. A man is found dead in his home from poison. The obvious suspect would be his wife. The problem is, Ayane was out of town, making it rather impossible for her to have been the culprit. Making matters even more complicated is Detective Kusanagi seems to be a bit enamored by Ayane, and really can’t see her having committed the murder. Enter physics professor Manabu Yukawa (Detective Galileo) who is consulted to try and help them figure out how this man could have been poisoned. Twists, red herrings, and a procedural that follows different procedure than what readers of U.S./U.K mysteries are used to. If you’ve never read Higashino before you should resolve that. (Reads as a standalone–but you’ll want to read all his novels.)


Sponsored by Yellow Pear Press

In 1889, Bridget joins the Borden household as their maid, but something evil is brewing beneath the house’s genteel surface. In 2016, Brooke hides from her dangerous past and avoids making friends. But what if it’s time to stop running?

Bram Stoker Award finalist Erika Mailman brings the true story of the brutal murder of Lizzie Borden’s father and stepmother into new focus by adding a riveting contemporary narrative. Intelligent and detailed, The Murderer’s Maid is a gripping read from beginning to bloody conclusion.


Links:

Book Riot is giving away $500 to a book store of your choice! (You can build a huge bookfort!)

So déjà vu with the Goodsreads Choice Awards: I wrote about the problem last year (0 out of 15 books nominated were written by an author of color) and I’m not counting any kind of win in this year’s nominations with 1 out of 15 books nominated being written by an author of color. I’m happy to see some great books up for the award: The Dry; The Good Daughter; Righteous. BUT again that list is missing great releases this year: Bluebird, Bluebird (3.96 rating); A Conspiracy in Belgravia (4.19 rating); A Rising Man (3.9 rating); I Know a Secret (4.29 rating); Overturned (3.75 rating)… It really feels like while genres like Literary Fiction and YA seem to really be pushing hard to make changes, the Mystery/Thriller genre seems to just be digging in its heels which is equally sad, gross, and infuriating.

Snow Blind by Ollie Masters, Tyler Jenkins (a graphic novel about a family in witness protection) is being adapted by Fox.

If you’re watching S2 of Riverdale (Archie reimagining) you know they’ve introduced a serial killer and turned up the notch on ridiculous: Decider has rounded up some banana pants moments from the first four episodes.

If you’re watching Netflix’s Mindhunter (fictionalized series based on the non-fiction Mind Hunter: Inside the FBI’s Elite Serial Crime Unit), here Newsweek rounded up all the real serial killers portrayed.

Speaking of serial killer Ed Kemper: This Los Angeles Times articles from the ’80s is making the rounds again: Blind Couple See Only Good, Not the Guilt of the Helpers (Prisoners were used to make audiobooks for the blind.)

The 2nd Roxane Weary novel by Krysten Lepionka now has a title and cover.

For Miamians (and visitors): It’s time for Miami Book Fair (Nov 12-18) with all it’s amazing events, authors–including Noir at the Bar.

Jessica Jones Wrote a Good Thriller! (Okay, the actress.)

bonfireBonfire by Krysten Ritter: Imagine Erin Brockovich returning to her hometown to look for evidence of water pollution from the company keeping the town afloat, and to face the high school mean girls. Oh, and hopefully figure out where the meanest one is—rumor is she just ran away, but some things have never added up. It isn’t long before Abby Williams is spiraling out from the weight of her father being ill, all of her childhood memories that she’s suddenly confronting, and her inability to stop herself from breaking into the “missing” girl’s storage unit. Something is clearly not right, but the more Williams seems to be losing it the further she may be getting from the truth… I am 100% here for an adaptation of this novel starring Krysten Ritter–you’re going to be imagining her as Abby Williams the whole time.

Things Aren’t What They Seem:

Still Midnight (Alex Morrow #1) by Denise Mina: Criminals burst into a home in Glasglow demanding to see Bob. Except there is no Bob. By night’s end a family member will be shot and the criminals will kidnap Amir, the patriarch of the family. The family and police are all confused as to why this particular family was targeted considering there is no one named Bob and the criminals shouted about Afghanistan when Amir was born in Uganda. And none of the family members have any relation or ties to Afghanistan. The novel equally follows the criminals (with the kidnapped Amir who imagines his mother alive and with him for comfort); Alex Morrow (a detective navigating the politics of her department and personal issues that are slowly revealed); the family members (as they try to heal and get Amir back). The novel is a procedural and crime novel that explores how humans don’t actually behave the way we expect them to–especially, when contained in a stereotypical box.

Kindle Deals! (Don’t know when they expire, sorry!)

Deanna Raybourn’s 1st two novels in the awesome and fun Veronica Speedwell series are on sale! A Curious Beginning is $2.99 and A Perilous Undertaking is $5.99 (review)

The Devil’s Star (Harry Hole #5) by Jo Nesbø is $1.99

And Steph Cha’s Juniper Song trilogy are each $7.99 (I swear this is a good deal considering the Hardcovers were always above $25 and there aren’t paperbacks which has been a huge bummer!) Follow Her Home (review); Beware Beware (review); Dead Soon Enough.

Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. And if you like to put a pin in things here’s an Unusual Suspects board.

Until next time, keep investigating! And in the meantime come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canaves.

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Unusual Suspects

Was Pablo Neruda Murdered? and More Mysteries!

Hello fellow mystery lovers! We’ve made it to November–I can smell the seasonal pies. Since the publishing industry hits the brakes during the end of the year when it comes to new releases, I’m going to do as much catch up and back catalog reading as I can–also, give a few books I put down a second (or third) try. Do you have any end of year reading goals?


Sponsored by Bethany House

When a terrorist investigation leads FBI agent Declan Grey to a closed immigrant community, he turns to crisis counselor Tanner Shaw for help. Despite the tension between them, he needs the best of the best on this case. Under imminent threat, they’ll have to race against the clock to stop a plot that could cost thousands of lives—including theirs.


There’s a baby elephant!

The Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra cover design: yellow with red border with an elephant between title words and a mustache at the bottomThe Unexpected Inheritance of Inspector Chopra (Baby Ganesh Agency Investigation #1) by Vaseem Khan: I 100% picked up this book because Inspector Ashwin Chopra inherits a baby elephant and I wanted to know how to get in on an inheritance like that. Sadly, I am no closer to inheriting one, but I did end up reading a delightful mystery. Inspector Chopra is retiring due to health, and ends up with a case of a drowned boy and (unrelated) a baby elephant. He may be retired, but he is not letting go of the boy’s death–which he refuses to accept as a drowning. He’s also having to figure out how to care for a baby elephant while living in an apartment complex. And you get to know Chopra’s wife, who has been unable to conceive all these years but finds herself coming up with an elaborate plan to finally have a child. Mystery, Mumbai, and a baby elephant–what more can you ask for?! (KINDLE DEAL ALERT: As of me writing this the kindle ebook is on sale for $2.99!)

Links:

There’s still time to enter Book Riot’s $500 dollar giveaway to a bookstore of YOUR choosing!

Rioter Nicole Mulhausen on reading Nancy Drew for the first time as an adult.

Attica Locke (and Joe Hill) are on this week’s Recommended!

Rincey and Katie discuss the trainwreck that is The Snowman adaptation publicity tour (and the film) and the mysteries they’re reading on Read or Dead.

“The only thing I want before I die is for the world to know the truth, that Pablo Neruda was murdered,” Araya told the Mexican magazine.” According to a 16-member panel Neruda did not die of cancer…

Hopefully the adaptation of this Dutch memoir will mean there will be an English translation release because it sounds really interesting: Astrid had to decide whether to turn against her mob boss brother after the murder of their brother-in-law.

Dear Nathan Fillion fans: He’ll be back at ABC with a “light crime drama” based on a true story of a rookie cop about twenty years older than all the other rookies.

Lorenzo Carcaterra’s Chasers has been put into development at CBS as a police drama series.

All the squeals for Megan Abbott’s next novel Give Me Your Hand which will release in July 2018.

Jenni Konner and Lena Dunham (creators of Girls) will adapt Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart.

A Cult, A Mystery, A Pinch of Orange is the New Black:

The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly cover design: girl in all black zoomed in holding a bookThe Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly by Stephanie Oakes: Seventeen-year-old Minnow Bly is in juvenile detention for assault and if she wants to get out, rather than transferred to prison, she’s going to have to cooperate with an FBI agent who keeps randomly showing up. He’s got some questions about the Kevinian cult she was raised in. The one whose leader just died. Camp burned to the ground. Does Bly know who was responsible? And is she willing to reveal what she knows for her own freedom? Told in the present and with flashbacks that take you through Bly’s life growing up in the cult, how she lost her hands (graphic), and the night she lost everything she’d known and how that possibly can finally give her freedom. Beautifully written, this one stayed with me.

Twisty With Bite:

The Hanging Girl cover image: red and black with title and a pinned note that reads "trust no one deceive everyone"The Hanging Girl by Eileen Cook: Skye Thorn “is in over her head” is an understatement. Needing money for college, she decides to use her tarot-card-reading-girl persona to help sell a fake kidnapping to the cops by claiming to have visions. The problem is everything goes wrong with the kidnapping, her accomplice has an agenda Thorn was unaware of and did not sign up for, and now Thorn’s psychic mother has decided she’ll also help the police with her visions. Soon Thorn doesn’t even care about the money anymore, she’d just like to get out of this entire mess alive and hopefully not arrested. I liked Thorn, as much as she’s screwing up and making some awful decisions, she’s aware and does have introspection and the desire to do better. The question is, is it too late?

Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. And if you like to put a pin in things here’s an Unusual Suspects board.

Until next time, keep investigating! And in the meantime come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canaves.

Categories
Unusual Suspects

Mixed-Genre Mystery Recommendations

Hello fellow mystery lovers! This week I’m recommending some great genre-mixed mysteries. I pretty much read every genre, and since mystery has always been my favorite, I love when they mingle. I’ve found it’s also a great way to expand your reading into other genres and to be able to read the same book with someone who doesn’t necessarily read the genre(s) you love. It’s like a middle ground that lets you explore a bit of more than one thing.


Sponsored by Haven by Mary Lindsey

Rain Ryland has never belonged anywhere. He’s used to people judging him for his rough background, his intimidating size, and now, his orphan status. He’s always been on the outside, looking in, and he’s fine with that. Until he moves to New Wurzburg and meets Friederike Burkhart.

Freddie isn’t like normal teen girls, though. And someone wants her dead for it. Freddie warns he’d better stay far away if he wants to stay alive, but Rain’s never been good at running from trouble. For the first time, Rain has something worth fighting for, worth living for. Worth dying for.


Fantasy Meets Historical Fiction Mystery:

Jackaby (Jackaby #1) by William Ritter: Think Sherlock with a female assistant and throw in some critters like Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Abigail Rook, the narrator, has run off to be an Archeologist (how dare that woman not be a proper lady!) but when her dreams don’t pan out she finds herself working with Jackaby, a socially oblivious investigator. While Jackaby may not be super observant of social behavior, he is skillful in spotting nonhuman creatures–now if he can only convince others. Rook and Jackaby make a great team. Theirs is a serial killer mystery, and it’s fun. If fantasy isn’t usually your jam, this is set in Victorian England with only sporadic creatures so it’s a great toe-in-the-water step into fantasy without feeling overwhelmed. It’s also the first in a series of four, so you can binge the whole thing: Beastly Bones; Ghostly Echoes; The Dire King. (And those covers are gorgeous!)

Chick Lit Meets Mystery:

Getting Rid of Bradley by Jennifer Crusie: When Chick Lit exploded onto the scene, I read it all. ALL. It was generally funny, fun, and centered around women, and I devoured it like candy. This book has managed to stay on my bookshelves since the ’90s–I’m an old–and I decided to give it a reread. It was as delightful as I remembered it–which honestly is all I remembered because my memory is terrible. Lucy Savage is divorcing her husband, and good riddance. Except getting rid of Bradley (ha!) isn’t solving any of her problems: her I’ll-be-a-fabulous-blonde has turned her hair funky colors; there seems to be a mix-up with Bradley’s identity; two cops keep bothering her; and it looks like someone is trying to kill her. Turns out one of those cops, the one that looks like a bad boy, has some serious sparks with Savage which is only going to get further ignited as she’s under his protection. OhMy! I know Chick Lit gets a bad rap–as things women like tend to–but this book is fun, and ridiculous, and at the core a mystery about who Bradley is, where he went, and why someone is suddenly trying to kill Lucy Savage.

Science-Fiction Meets Mystery/Thriller:

Sleeping Giants (Themis Files #1) by Sylvain Neuvel: This novel is amazing and if you’re an audiobook reader it’s a must in audio–all the narrators are fantastic. Told mostly through interviews and journal entries we get the story of Rose Franklin who as a child was ridding her bike and came across a giant metal hand. Think of discovering a gigantic dinosaur bone except metal and ohmygod what! Almost twenty years later there is still not much known about this metal hand, nor where it came from. But people want, and need, to know, including Franklin, who is a physicist in charge of cracking the mystery of the hand. Everything about this book is built on not only the mystery of what and from where, but you don’t even know who the “investigators” are, which also becomes a part of the mystery. It’s a page-turning Sci-Fi mystery/thriller that is a hell of a ride. And since it’s set in the U.S. and doesn’t have the world building of a lot of Sci-Fi, it’s a great place to start if you’re overwhelmed by the genre.

Crime Meets Romance (Trigger Warning: Sexual/Domestic Abuse):

Uptown Thief (Justice Huslers #1) by Aya de León: A fellow Rioter had recommended this and I’m so glad he did. This is a mashup crime novel and romance. It isn’t a puzzle mystery type book, instead you follow criminals. But not your everyday criminals, these are women who are running a women’s health clinic in NY for underprivileged women. But you need money to keep a clinic open and funding just isn’t enough. So Marisol Rivera creates a down-low escort service that targets CEOs that want to donate to the clinic. Except she’s targeting human garbage CEOs so her and her crew can rob them. Girls gotta do what a girls gotta do to keep helping her community… As for the romance: Rivera may finally get a shot at a real relationship when a now ex-cop she grew up with starts circling her orbit. There’s also a really nice relationship between two of the clinic workers. Also, plenty of criminal activity–including some hold-your-breath-they’re-going-to-get-caught moments.

Links to Click:

Book Riot is giving away $500 to a bookstore of your choosing–ermergerd that’s SO MANY BOOKS!

A murderer helped make the Oxford English Dictionary.

Winnie M Li’s Dark Chapter has won the 2017 Not the Booker prize. (Review)

An interview (via live chat) with Tess Gerritsen, author of Rizzoli & Isles series and a ton of books.

Sarah Blaedel’s Louise Rick series is being adapted into a TV series.

Milwaukeeans: Murder and Mayhem on Nov. 4th

Now in Paperback:

Tell the Truth Shame the Devil by Melina Marchetta (Review)

Everything You Want Me To Be by Mindy Mejia (Review)

Fields Where They Lay (Junior Bender #6) by Timothy Hallinan

The Last Day of Emily Lindsey by Nic Joseph (Review)

Thrice the Brinded Cat Hath Mew’d (Flavia de Luce #8) by Alan Bradley

 

Recent Release Kindle Deal!

Are You Sleeping by Kathleen Barber is $2.99 (Review)

 

 

Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. And if you like to put a pin in things here’s an Unusual Suspects board.

Until next time, keep investigating! And in the meantime come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canaves.

Categories
Unusual Suspects

Tumblr’s Serial Killer Fandom Problem, Awesome Kindle Deals, & More!

Hi fellow mystery fans! Have you been watching any good mystery shows and/or reading any great mysteries recently? I’m really enjoying Mindhunter on Netflix (especially love the dynamic between the “partners”) and my library went back to using Overdrive so I’ve been putting a dent in my backlist TBR!


Sponsored by Bethany House

When a terrorist investigation leads FBI agent Declan Grey to a closed immigrant community, he turns to crisis counselor Tanner Shaw for help. Despite the tension between them, he needs the best of the best on this case. Under imminent threat, they’ll have to race against the clock to stop a plot that could cost thousands of lives—including theirs.


When the Followup Novel is Just As Good!

Righteous (IQ #2) by Joe Ide: This was my must-read pick for October, and it’s one of the best mystery releases this year. Isaiah Quintabe (IQ) is back, still living in East Long Beach and helping his community by taking on cases and accepting payment in any form clients can pay–chickens included. While IQ is a loner and doesn’t always have the greatest social skills it’s because as a child he was being raised by his brother who was killed in a hit-and-run that was never solved. Not only does he decide to solve his brother’s case, but he also gets a visit from the past in the form of a woman who needs his services to help her sister in Las Vegas. With his refusal to let things go and his need to solve his cases, IQ ends up in the crosshairs of multiple gangs. All while realizing that this life he’s been living is lonely and maybe he should try to work on getting along better with friends like Dodson–a not-always-happy-to-be-dragged-along side-kick of sorts. Ide brings to life the ethnically diverse community of East Long Beach without creating stereotypical caricatures, but rather creates people with full backstories and lives. It’s the kind of crime novel where no one is necessarily all good, but everyone is human. I can’t wait for more IQ.

Links to Click:

Feeling lucky? Book Riot is giving away $500 to spend at any bookstore you choose!!!!!!!

Rioter Tirzah Price’s Genre Kryptonite is Queer Ladies Solving Crime.

Rincey and Katie talk Tana French, newsy items, and review recent releases on Read or Dead.

An interview with Adam Sternberg, author of The Blinds.

An interview with Leye Andele, author of Easy Motion Tourist.

The next novel in Alex Segura’s Pete Fernandez series is Blackout and the cover has been revealed.

The Problem with Pop Culture’s White Male Serial Killer Obsession by Sandra Song

Inside Tumblr’s Serial Killer Fandom Problem by Vanessa Willoughby

One of Us is Lying cover image: four squares each with a teen yearbook image but their faces are replaced with notebook paperE! is adapting One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus into a series.

The Nancy Drew series that CBS passed on looks to be getting a second chance with NBC–although, as a completely different show that will follow the author of Nancy Drew. And sadly Sarah Shahi is no longer starring.

Sisters in Crime celebrates 30 years and put together a Publishing Summit Report: Raising Women’s Voices for Thirty Years.

She Finds Dead People:

Grave Sight (Harper Connelly #1) by Charlaine Harris: Depending on how you look at it, Harper Connelly is either cursed or gifted with the ability to find dead people after a lightning strike as a child. She can’t tell you who did it or why, nor is she a lie detector. What she can tell you is how they died and where the body is. It’s become her job, actually. Her and her stepbrother Tolliver travel around picking up cases where someone would like to finally know what happened to a missing person. If they’re dead, and within a reasonable distance, she finds them and can sense the cause of death–then she gets paid and moves on to the next place and case. Problem is, her new case is keeping her much longer then her or Tolliver care to stay even after she found the body, because it seems now there’s more bodies. Not only are Harper and Tolliver not able to leave, but it’s clear they’re not wanted. Harper is also going to have to face her co-dependent relationship with her stepbrother that stems from an abusive/neglected childhood–but maybe they should just focus on getting out of the town as fast as they can…

Ridiculous Small Town Characters Make for a Fun Read:

Pumpkin Picking with Murder (An Otter Lake Mystery #2) by Auralee Wallace: I picked this up because I needed something fun and seasonal to read and saw a review complaining that the characters were all too ridiculous–which to me sounded perfect. Erica Bloom visits her hometown (Otter Lake, New Hampshire) hoping that this time nothing goes wrong and she can finally get a relationship with the town’s sheriff to work. Enter a dead man, Erica’s “aunts” being looked at as suspects, Erica’s mother currently taking a vow of silence, and her best friend Freddie who has now deemed himself in charge of security demanding they look into the death. It’s one ridiculous event after another as Freddie and Erica do a lot of terrible investigation that places Grady, the sheriff, in the position of having to arrest his potential girlfriend…

Awesome Kindle Deals! (Same caveat as last time: I have no idea when the sales end so if you want it, get it–they’re all great reads!)

No One Knows by J.T Ellison is $1.99 (Mystery/Thriller about a missing husband and the suspected wife.)

Lamar Giles’ Fake ID is $4.99 and Endangered is $3.99 (A Little Q&A with Lamar Giles: here.)

Trouble is a Friend of Mine (Trouble #1) by Stephanie Tromly is $4.99 (For Veronica Mars fans.)

The Truth and Other Lies by Sascha Arango, Imogen Taylor (translator) is $4.99 (Suspenseful crime novel about an author.)

North of Boston by Elisabeth Elo is $5.99 (Mystery/thriller with a unique MC and one of my favorite reads.)

Alexia Gordon’s Murder in G Major and Death in D Minor are each $2.99 (Cozy, fun, with some ghosts: reviewed here.)

The Missing File by D.A. Mishani is $1.99, A Possibility of Violence is $3.99, and The Man Who Wanted to Know Everything is $3.99 (Israeli detective series which feels written with kindness and is great for fans of procedurals and the exploration of human behavior.)

Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. And if you like to put a pin in things here’s an Unusual Suspects board.

Until next time, keep investigating! And in the meantime come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canaves.

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Unusual Suspects

A Q&A with Attica Locke, A Very Agatha Christie Halloween, and More

Hello fellow mystery fans! He did the mystery mash! The mystery mash. It was a forensics smash… (Sorry, not sorry.)


Sponsored by The Dark Lake by Sarah Bailey

Rosalind’s secrets didn’t die with her.

Detective Sergeant Gemma Woodstock is deeply unnerved when a high school classmate is found strangled, her body floating in a lake. And not just any classmate, but Rosalind Ryan, whose beauty and inscrutability exerted a magnetic pull on Smithson High School.

Rosalind’s enigmas frustrate and obsess Gemma, who has her own dangerous secrets—an affair with her colleague and past tragedies that may not stay in the past. Brilliantly rendered, THE DARK LAKE has characters as compelling and mysteries as layered as the best thrillers from Gillian Flynn and Sophie Hannah.


Great Start to a Very Long Running Mystery Series:

A is for Alibi (Kinsey Millhone, #1) by Sue Grafton: I did something I rarely do and started all the way at the beginning of a very long running mystery series! How long you ask? Well the series has a title for every letter of the alphabet and is currently at Y (Y is for Yesterday). The final in the series looks to release in 2019, so I’ve got a lot of reading to do!

The first book in the series introduces us to Kinsey Millhone, a thirty-two year old California PI with two ex-husbands and zero kids. She’s mouthy, observant, a good liar, and while I love me an unlikable female character, for those who don’t, she doesn’t cross into that territory. Her current case is a woman just released from prison after finishing her sentencing for murdering her husband. Except she claims she never did, and wants Millhone to find out who actually did. Being that the murdered husband was a womanizing divorce lawyer, Millhone has plenty of suspects to reevaluate while also keeping an eye on the widow–wouldn’t be the first time someone claimed to be innocent who was not. Millhone isn’t all business though, as she seems to have an eye for the fellas… A solid mystery, great detective character (reminded me of my love for Kat Colorado), humorous, and with a bit of action. I totally get why so many people love Millhone and this series and look forward to continuing.

A Little Q&A: Attica Locke (I give authors I’m excited about 5 questions and let them answer any three they’d like.)

bluebird bluebirdAnd ohmygod I’m so excited! Attica Locke is one of those writers that I will pickup any book she writes–and watch any show she is a producer/ writer for: Empire. She wrote one of my favorite opening scenes in a novel which takes place in a historic plantation house: The Cutting Season. And her recent novel Bluebird, Bluebird (which you’ve heard me raving about for months) and the Texas ranger character Darren Mathews are now all time favorites of mine. Locke is not only a great writer when it comes to plotting mysteries but my favorite thing about her writing are her characters–who are always completely alive in my mind from their introduction–and her ability to 100% immerse me in her settings.

And here’s Attica Locke:

Attica Locke photo by Mel Melcon, Los Angeles Times

If you were forced to live the rest of your life as one of your characters who would it be?

Darren Mathews in the newest book, Bluebird, Bluebird  ’cause he gets to carry a gun. And I like bourbon probably as much as he does.

If you were to blurb your most recent/upcoming book (à la James Patterson):

“It’s my favorite, but don’t tell the others.”

The last book you read that you loved?

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman

Thanks Attica! I’m going to have to bump Eleanor Oliphant up on my reading list. And I really hope that Bluebird, Bluebird is the beginning of a series because I need more Darren Mathews!

Cozy Mystery October Read!

Hallowe’en Party (Hercule Poirot #36) by Agatha Christie: I’ve been wanting to reread Christie for-EV-er, and while I was planning on finally reading her in order, I couldn’t pass up reading this one for Halloween. It was an entertaining, cozy reread for me, but does have some political and societal things that may have gotten some side-eye– like every character believed the only answer to who the culprit could be was a mental patient released because of overcrowding. The adults really didn’t seem to like children much, which for some reason I found amusing, and I enjoyed the look at Halloween and the games played in the opening. It’s certainly not a happy Halloween party (a thirteen-year-old girl is found “drowned” in the apple bobbing bucket). But Poirot, asked by the host of the party to look into it even though the police are on the case, will solve the cas,e and all will be explained by the end of the book. (You can read Christie out of order, except leave the final Poirot novel for last.)

Links to Click:

Over on Book Riot I added even more books to The Past is Gonna Get ‘Cha mysteries.

The Dime by Kathleen KentI’m so freaking excited that Kathleen Kent’s The Dime has a script commitment because it’s a fantastic book perfect for an adaptation.

Excited for Riverdale‘s season 2? Here’s an interview with Ashleigh Murray (Josie): “We’re only just getting into the thick of the turmoil that’s happening between Josie and the Pussycats.” (Premieres Oct. 11th on the CW)

Speaking of S2 premieres: Good Behavior will be back on TNT Oct. 15th. If you need a s1 recap here you go.

Netflix’s Mindhunter (based on the true crime book Mind Hunter: Inside the FBI’s Elite Serial Crime Unit) will be streaming Oct. 13th.

Great Books In Kinds Deals! (But there’s a caveat: I have no idea when the sales expire! As of me sending this out they are on sale, fingers crossed they stay that way until you get your ebook.)

Speaking of the fantastic Attica Locke Black Water Rising (Jay Porter #1) is $4.99

Megan Abbott’s noir novels Bury Me Deep and The Song is You are each $3.99

Silent City (Pete Fernandez Mystery #1) by Alex Segura is .99cents (Miami journalist turned PI throughout series.)

The Undertaker’s Daughter by Kate Mayfield is $4.99 (Memoir of growing up in a small town as the mortician’s daughter.)

And Sometimes I Wonder About You (Leonid McGill #5) by Walter Mosley is $4.99 (NYC-based PI.)

Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. And if you like to put a pin in things here’s an Unusual Suspects board.

Until next time, keep investigating! And in the meantime come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canaves.

Categories
Unusual Suspects

Kristen Bell Gets a Mystery Podcast, and More!

Hello fellow mystery fans! Kristen Bell and Anna Chlumsky have a new dark comedy murder mystery series podcast, Deadly Manners, and I’m going to drop everything and go listen. Er–I mean first newsletter, then listen!


Sponsored by GANGSTER NATION by Tod Goldberg, published by Counterpoint Press

It’s been two years since the events of Gangsterland, when legendary Chicago hitman Sal Cupertine disappeared into the guise of Las Vegas Rabbi David Cohen. Now, in September of 2001, Sal wants out. He’s almost made enough money to slip away and start fresh, but when his cousin falls into the hands of a former FBI agent, he’s suddenly trapped in Las Vegas, with the law, society, and the post-9/11 world closing in around him. With the wit and gritty glamour that defines his writing, Goldberg traces how the things we most value in our lives have been built on the enterprises of criminals.


Interesting “Past and Present” Mystery:

The Last Day of Emily LindseyThe Last Day of Emily Lindsey cover image: left side red background with title and then it appears ripped with a white woman walking away by Nic Joseph: This was a page-turner for me for two reasons: Even though it isn’t fabulism, it felt like it could be; the detective character was unique and intriguing. Detective Steven Paul was raised in foster care before being adopted by a loving couple and he’s spent his life with night terrors that no one can figure out, but that have taken a toll on his life. His wife divorced him and is making it difficult for him to see her son (who he’d raised with her), and an incident at work has his partner and boss doubting his ability and stability. Then he gets the case of a woman covered in blood and holding a knife who draws a symbol from his terrors–what is happening?! In between the current chapters of Paul trying to solve the case while keeping his life from crumbling any further are chapters with another storyline about a group of kids who are communally parented and are trying to solve a mystery of their own. Good read especially for fans of “then and now” and novels that mix adult and child POV.

Links Worth a Click:

On Book Riot: Inclusive Mystery/Thrillers From September and October (Some of the year’s best mysteries are on the list.)

After the Eclipse cover image: mother and young daughter sitting next to each other with an eclipse photo overlayed on topOver on Bust: Rioter Jaime R. Herndon interviewed Sarah Perry: How “After The Eclipse” Author Sarah Perry Wrote A Memoir About Her Mother’s Murder

Rincey and Katie talk Miss Fisher’s Kickstarter and books, plus the mysteries they’ve recently finished and just picked up on Read or Dead.

Whoopsie: Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department sought an apology when the Who Shot Biggie & Tupac? documentary aired the wrong police photo.

In the Woods cover image: white background with the title letters having tree branches growing out of themSarah Phelps is adapting Tana French’s 1st two novels in the Dublin Murder Squad (In the Woods ; The Likeness) for the BBC.

In true crime news: Thanks to DNA advances there’s finally been an arrest in a nearly 30 year cold case of a killer dressed as a clown having fatally shot Marlene Warren.

For fans of Dick Wolf (Law & Order creator): CBS ordered a 13-episode procedural for the 2018-19 season tentatively titled F.B.I.

Never a fan of authors talking about not being readers in what they write, but here’s an interview with Dan Brown on Origin, his 5th book in the Robert Langdon series. (And the book is officially released out into the wild so you can finally read it!)

Students Conquering Cold Cases: “At the University of Pittsburgh, there’s a student club devoted to solving crimes, one that’s taken seriously by law enforcement. And it’s run by young women.”

The Behind Her Eyes Author is Back with a YA Mean Girls Mystery:

13 Minutes13 Minutes cover image: light purple background with a teen girl's face from nose up and eyes shut by Sarah Pinborough: 13 minutes is the amount of time Natasha was dead before being pulled from the river. She has no memory of how she ended up there or why she escaped from her bedroom window in the middle of the night. But her brush with death now has everyone wondering if she accidentally fell in, or if someone had tried to murder her? As the popular girl in school, her surviving has thrown the social order at school into chaos now that she’s back and reviving an old friendship with Becca, an outcast. But really how dangerous could a potential murderer be when you have to compete with mean girls?

Suspense With a Bite (Trigger Warning: Domestic Abuse):

White BodiesWhite Bodies cover image: black and white photo of white woman laying in a bathtub and the same image is mirrored upside down on top half of cover by Jane Robins: Callie is worried about her sister Tilda: She thinks Tilda’s boyfriend Felix is abusing her. There have been moments that she witnessed that don’t feel right and now her sister’s arms always seem to have bruises. But Tilda doesn’t want help, she’s in love and Felix is quickly becoming her everything. Callie, needing to do something, joins an online support group in hopes of getting advice on how to save her sister. After befriending two other members Callie finds herself in the unwanted position of being offered a trade: Felix will be murdered if Callie will murder another abusive spouse. What will Callie do?

Kindle Monthly Deal:

Good BehaviorGood Behavior cover image: show poster of actress with red hair bob cut in low cut dress holding sunglasses and staring by Blake Crouch is $1.99 (Con artist crime novel that has been adapted into a TNT series. You can stream the 1st season on Hulu and season 2 returns Sunday, Oct. 15 at 9/8c on TNT.)

 

 

 

I Have To Go Shopping Now:

Baker St print: bicycle with 221B on it and a key and lettering

I am Sherlocked Geekery Bicycle Art Print by DexMex

Nancy Drew pin: enamel pin shaped like a book with yellow cover and blonde girl with magnifying glass

Nancy Drew Book Pin by JaneMount

Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. And if you like to put a pin in things here’s an Unusual Suspects board.

Until next time, keep investigating! And in the meantime come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canaves.

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Unusual Suspects

True Crime Memoirs, Miss Fisher’s Movie Gets Pushback, and More

Hello fellow mystery fans! Have you heard of this awesome story about Wanda Steward? She was illiterate in her mid-forties but thanks to a Philadelphia nonprofit she learned to read and then wrote a children’s book which was read by Idris Elba for #ProjectLiteracy’s bedtime story.


Sponsored by The Darkness Within by Lisa Stone

No-one is born evil…are they? A lorry crashes on a dark wet road. In the wake of the tragedy, a dying man receives another chance at life – but does he really deserve it? And if he lives, will those around him wish he hadn’t? When critically ill Jacob Wilson has a heart transplant, his behavior becomes very strange. His worried parents and girlfriend try their best to understand his sudden mood swings, but as things worsen, they begin to live in terror of what they might find in their son’s bedroom next – and as Jacob’s personality morphs, so too do the lives of those around him… The Darkness Within is a spellbinding crime novel with a dark heart.


Another Great, Yet Heartbreaking, Memoir True Crime: (Trigger Warning: Rape/ Suicidal Thoughts)

After the Eclipse: A Mother’s Murder, a Daughter’s Search by Sarah Perry: While I can’t imagine how they find the strength to write about the tragedies that altered their lives, I find I prefer the true crime memoirs written by survivors or relatives over true crime written by strangers gazing in. They tend to focus more on the actual humans affected over the actual crime and perpetrator, reminding us that people are more than the tragedy. In After the Eclipse Sarah Perry not only recounts the night her mother was murdered in the room next to hers when she was twelve, but also her mother Crystal’s life. The book is written in chapters that alternate between Crystal’s life before and up to her murder, and Sarah’s life after her mother’s murder. Then in 2005, years after the crime, Sarah gets the call that they solved the crime and the book ends with Sarah’s experience with the trial and finally speaking to Crystal’s family and friends about the past. It’s heartbreaking to not only see Crystal’s young life cut short and the effect on her daughter, but also Sarah’s struggle afterwards being passed around homes and the police never quite believing her that she didn’t know who murdered her mother. Sarah’s look at how slut shaming, sexism, and misogyny puts women’s lives in danger makes this an especially worthwhile read.

Links Worth a Click:

Rioter S.W. Sondheimer had an amazing chat with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. (And he has a lot of book/comic recommendations!)

Also on Book Riot: 8 Great Missing Person Mysteries on Audio

and Google Search Now Checks Your Local Library for Ebooks.

According to Rolling Stone: Ten True Crime Shows to Watch this Fall

Lifetime’s straight-to-series psychological thriller drama You (An adaptation of Caroline Kepnes’ novel) has cast Hari Nef in a recurring role.

Kenneth Branagh, director and star of the upcoming adaptation of Murder on the Orient Express, has also recorded an audiobook of Agatha Christie’s classic novel. You can hear an extract here.

Widower Patton Oswalt tweeted that Michelle McNamara’s true crime book, which she was working on when she died, will be published in February 2018. I’ll Be Gone in the Dark is based on the Golden State Killer and has an introduction by Gillian Flynn and an afterward by Patton Oswalt.

The Miss Fisher movie Kickstarter is a thing and it was funded in 2 days. There is also pushback from Australia: Why we’re not supporting the “Miss Fisher” the Movie Kickstarter.

Former President Bill Clinton and James Patterson sold the rights to The President Is Missing to Showtime to be adapted into a TV series.

Page-turner to Curl Up With This Fall:

Don’t Let Go by Harlan Coben: I could not remember for the life of me if I’d read Coben before (which is not a statement about his writing, but about my terrible memory pre-Goodreads) so I picked this one up and honestly inhaled it. If you need to disconnect and to read a quick-ish page-turner, this one worked for me. You have a detective who has never been able to let go of his past: his brother’s death and his high school girlfriend’s disappearance. Then his ex-girlfriend’s prints show up at a murder scene. (I just realized that sounds a bit similar to his TV show The Five.) I’ll be honest I had to read through more stereotypical gender stuff than I personally care for but this was also a rare mystery/thriller that treated mental illness with kindness which was really appreciated. You get a mystery, a dash of romance, a bit of a thriller with a twist!

A Good, Important, Crime Novel: (Trigger Warning: Rape)

Dark Chapter by Winnie M. Li: This is a crime novel that follows two characters before, during, and after a rape. Vivian is an American filmmaker working in London who loves to hike and Johnny is an Irish teen whose family are travelers living in a caravan. It is not written in the puzzle solving mystery fashion but rather as a crime novel that explores how a boy can become a rapist and how a woman’s life is changed. Watching Vivian navigate through friends not knowing how to help, dealing with the 72 hour window for PEP (post-exposure prophylaxis) emergency HIV prevention medication, all the interviews, police procedures, witness stand, and rape culture’s effect on a boy made this a sometimes difficult read, but ultimately an important one. Hopefully it will lead to more dialogue that not only helps victims but places more emphasis on not raising boys to be rapist.

Recent Paperback Releases:

IQ by Joe Ide (Great new series with the sequel coming out in October which is excellent.)

Different Class by Joanne Harris (Literary Crime)

Turbo Twenty-Three (Stephanie Plum #23) by Janet Evanovich

The Sleeping Beauty Killer by Alafair Burke and Marry Higgins Clark

The Lost Woman (Louise Rick series) by Sarah Blaedel (My review)

A Perilous Undertaking (Veronica Speedwell #2) by Deanna Raybourn (Delightful historical feminist mystery– my review)

The Lost Boy by Camilla Läckberg (For fans of dark Scandinavian mystery/thrillers)

The Pigeon Tunnel: Stories from My Life by John Le Carre´ (How can the memoir of a man who was a spy and then became a best-selling author of spy novels not be great?!)

Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. And if you like to put a pin in things here’s an Unusual Suspects board.

Until next time, keep investigating! And in the meantime come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canaves.

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Unusual Suspects

1800s True Crime, and More Mysteries!

Hi fellow mystery fans! We’re two days away from the official start of fall but I’m already watching Halloween movies and decorating with ghosts. Take that, official days!


Sponsored by Trell by Dick Lehr

On a hot summer night in the late 1980s, in the Boston neighborhood of Roxbury, a twelve-year-old African-American girl was sitting on a mailbox talking with her friends when she became the innocent victim of gang-related gunfire. Amid public outcry, an immediate manhunt was on to catch the murderer, and a young African-American man was quickly apprehended, charged, and — wrongly — convicted of the crime. Dick Lehr, a former reporter for the Boston Globe’s famous Spotlight Team who investigated this case for the newspaper, now turns the story into Trell, a page-turning novel about the daughter of an imprisoned man who persuades a reporter and a lawyer to help her prove her father’s innocence.


A Great Series Set in Ghana:

Death by His GraceDeath by his Grace cover image: blue background with graphic design images of priest clothes, bridle clothes, kaftan (Darko Dawson #5) by Kwei Quartey: While you can technically jump into the series here and not feel lost, there is something–which I can’t reveal because mystery!–that happens which makes me advise that you read the entire series in order. With that said, I love novels that are set outside of the U.S., especially in countries we don’t usually get many books from. Add in a mystery, and make it a series and I’m so happy! This time around, Chief Inspector Darko Dawson of the Ghanaian federal police is looking into the murder of Katherine Yeboah, a woman having marital problems because of infertility. As Dawson tries to solve the case you also get to see glimpses into his private life of him caring for an ill father, and raising two boys with his wife. A good pick for anyone looking for a mystery series to binge and also a good choice for audiobook listeners.

For Your Ears:

If like me you love listening to short-ish podcasts while getting-things-done and love hearing interesting people talk about books they love, you may get as excited as I am for Book Riot’s new podcast Recommended!

Rincey and Katie talk Stephen King and recent releases on Read or Dead!

A Little Q&A: Lamar Giles (I give authors I’m excited about 5 questions and let them answer any three they’d like.)

Overturned cover image: black background graphic drawing of skull and suits on playing cardsFake ID was one of the first audiobooks I listened to, which helped me not only fall in love with listening to audiobooks but also want to read more from Giles. His characters are teens (generally over their heads) who are always realistic and intriguing. Not to play favorites, but if I had to it would be Nikki Tate from Overturned. She is pretty much running her family’s casino, playing in illegal games, trying to get things ready for college, and getting to know her father again now that he’s been exonerated. It’s enough to overwhelm anyone, but Nikki always has a plan, and a stubborn head on her shoulders, which is why I loved watching her navigate her life.

And here’s Lamar Giles:

If you were forced to live the rest of your life as one of your characters who would it be?

It would definitely be Nikki Tate from OVERTURNED. She’s a pro level card player, and world class problem solver. Plus, unlike her, I think I could enjoy living in a Las Vegas casino, if only for the room service! I wouldn’t be a fan of the murder-y stuff. But, you know, you take the good with the bad.

If you adapted a well-known book into a Clue mystery what would be the solve?

IT: Pennywise, with all the things you’ve ever feared, in the sewer.

If you were to blurb your most recent/upcoming book (à la James Patterson):

If I blurbed myself, I think I’d go the hypnotic suggestion route: “This book will make you want to tag @Oprah on Twitter!” ~ Lamar Giles

Thanks Lamar! And because it can’t be said enough I love Nikki Tate!

Lots of Links:

What I’m watching next: Author Harlan Coben’s first original TV series The Five (set and originally aired in the U.K.) is now streaming on Netflix for U.S. and Canadian members. When a missing child’s DNA shows up in a recent murder scene four friends reunite.

Quicksand cover image: blue water of pool with lettering sinking inNetflix has ordered its first Swedish original thriller: Quicksand. Based on the bestselling novel by Malin Persson Giolito.

The city’s medical examiner has been a pioneer in analyzing complex DNA samples. But two methods were recently discontinued, raising questions about thousands of cases.” via The New York Times

For true crime fans: Soledad O’Brien and Ice-T will explore the deaths of Biggie Smalls and Tupac Shakur in a special airing Sept 24th on Fox.

LA Confidential cover image: dark night car with headlights and police officers aroundBased on James Ellroy’s noir classic, L.A. Confidential is in development at CBS.

According to Max Read at Vulture this is The Best Way to read John Smiley Books.

The sequel film to The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo‘s U.S. adaptation, The Girl in the Spider’s Web, has officially cast it’s Lisbeth Salander: Claire Foy.

Origin cover image: dark blue background with lettering and a spiral staircase in center like a shellYou can read an excerpt from Dan Brown’s upcoming novel Origin (Robert Langdon #5).

If you’re patiently–or not so patiently–waiting for the 4th book in the Cormoran Strike series J.K. Rowling is currently writing it.

 

Interesting Case of Girlfriend Murdering Her Girlfriend in 1892:

Alice + Freda Forever cover image: red background white lettering and black line drawing of two women holding hands

Alice + Freda Forever: A Murder in Memphis by Alexis Coe, Sally Klann (Illustrations): I kind of prefer true crime that takes a look at old crimes like this because they don’t feel sensationalized and they have an added historical element. In this case, it also has the added bonus of line drawing illustrations and the lovers’ letters (although the letters were not easy to read on a Paperwhite-style ereader). If the crime had taken place today, it would be viewed most likely as a jealous and obsessed woman who murdered her fiancee´ when she broke things off–or honestly, probably wouldn’t have happened– but being that it happened in Tennessee in 1892 when the term lesbian wasn’t even in use, there are a lot of things at play. Women’s behavior at the time (including girls practicing relationships for men amongst themselves) along with the look at journalist, court proceedings, racism, homophobia, and “insanity” made this a really interesting read.

More Kindle Deals!

The Queen of the Night by Alexander Chee is $2.99 (Literary Mystery)

Vertigo by Pierre Boileau, Thomas Narcejac, Geoffrey Sainsbury (Translator) is $1.99

 

 

Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. And if you like to put a pin in things here’s an Unusual Suspects board.

Until next time, keep investigating! And in the meantime come talk books with me on Twitter and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canaves.

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Unusual Suspects

(9/13) Innocent Man Saved From Death Penalty by CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM & More!

Hello fellow mystery fans! Vision for Baltimore was created to bring eye exams and glasses to kids in need because kids who can see, read better and perform better in school. Hopefully programs like this will be created in all needed areas.


This week’s newsletter is sponsored by Good Me Bad Me by Ali Land.

Milly’s mother is a serial killer. Though Milly loves her mother, the only way to make her stop is to turn her in to the police. Milly is given a fresh start: a new identity, a home with an affluent foster family, and a spot at an exclusive private school.

But Milly has secrets, and life at her new home becomes complicated. As her mother’s trial looms, with Milly as the star witness, Milly starts to wonder how much of her is nature, how much of her is nurture, and whether she is doomed to turn out like her mother after all.

When tensions rise and Milly feels trapped by her shiny new life, she has to decide: Will she be good? Or is she bad? She is, after all, her mother’s daughter.


Best 2017 Mystery

bluebird bluebirdBluebird, Bluebird by Attica Locke: This is Locke’s best work, which is saying something since she wrote for the hit TV show Empire AND has three great previous novels. This time around, Locke introduces us to a black Texas Ranger who is technically on suspension after an attempt to be a good samaritan backfired on him. That doesn’t stop him, though, from needing to figure out how a black man and white woman were murdered in a small Texas town. It’s the kind of town that holds dearly to its racism and secrets and wants no outside help, especially from a black man. We may be leaving the heat behind for fall weather, but Locke’s amazing writing will have you slicked in sweat as she places you in Texas. A fantastic mystery from beginning to end that unfortunately could not be more timely in its look at race and the justice system in the U.S.

Over on Book Riot: Mya Nunnally put together a list of Books For Fans of How to Get Away With Murder

On the Oxygen Channel website (because they’re all true crime now): New Netflix Doc Tells Amazing True Story Of How ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’ Saved Innocent Man From Death Penalty (Longshot will be on Netflix on September 30: watch trailer.)

Watch the trailer for Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s comic book Mycroft Holmes and The Apocalypse Handbook.

I never got around to watching season two of True Detective but I’m 100% watching season 3 since it’ll be starring Mahershala Ali!

Fall Mystery & Thrillers via Bookish

Watch the trailer for Alias Grace: Netflix’s upcoming mini-series based on Margaret Atwood’s novel about an Irish immigrant in Canada and a stable hand who were convicted of murdering their employers in 1843.

Funny!

March of Crime (The Murder-by-Month Mysteries) by Jess Lourey: Packed with charmingly ridiculous characters, I laughed my way through this small town mystery. Mira James has a few jobs, including being a librarian—she took a serious pay cut in hopes of keeping the library open—and PI. The PI part she’s still working on, since Minnesota mandates that before using a PI license you have to work 6,000 hours of supervised investigation. She’ll probably get through those hours quickly, though, since she seems to have the I-keep-finding-dead-bodies syndrome. This time around, one of the life-size creepy dolls a town resident has been making has a hidden surprise: A very bad surprise of a dead body. Now James, who either loves or hates you, is trying to figure out who committed murder, while working at the library, and taking on a side job as a phone sex operator for those looking for a Minnesota accent—hilarious. If I had to pick a favorite thing about this novel, it would be James’s octogenarian best friend, who is a kiss-my-grits, tells it like it is, lives life to the fullest, thong bikini-wearing lady. All the emoji-heart eyes. (You can jump into the series here, like I did, and not feel lost, but it does give away the ending of the previous book. I’m fine with that because I plan on starting at the beginning of the serious and will have forgotten by the time I get to it.)

Also Out This Week:

The Girl Who Takes an Eye for an Eye (Millennium #5) by David Lagercrantz, George Goulding (Translator) (The newest in the Lisbeth Salander series which was taken over by Lagercrantz after the creator, Stieg Larsson, passed away.)

Trell by Dick Lehr (YA inspired by a true story of a wrongful conviction)

Dark Chapter by Winnie M Li (TW: rape. Follows the victim and the rapist before, during, and after the assault.)

Lies She Told by Cate Holahan (While on deadline writing a thriller it appears the writer’s life starts to blur with her writing.)

More Kindle Deals!

The Zig Zag GirlThe Zig Zag Girl cover image: yellow background with title lettering and a girl dancing with top hat between the Z and the A and Smoke and Mirrors by Elly Griffiths are each $2.99 (The first two in the Magic Men series)

The Constant Gardener by John le Carré is $1.99

Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. And if you like to put a pin in things here’s an Unusual Suspects board.

Until next time, keep investigating! And in the meantime come talk books with me on Twitter and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canaves.

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Unusual Suspects

Charlotte Holmes is the Best Sherlock, & a Chat With Megan Abbott

Hello fellow mystery fans! People are getting excited about pumpkin-flavored things and other people are annoyed by those people so fall reading is almost here!


Sponsored by PORTRAIT OF VENGEANCE by Carrie Stuart Parks

Gwen Marcey has done a good job keeping the pain of her past boxed up, but as she investigates the case of a missing child in Lapwai, Idaho, details surface that are eerily similar to her childhood traumas. What’s going on?

No one knows more about the impact of the past than the Nez Perce people of Lapwai. Gwen is an unwelcome visitor to some, making her investigation more difficult. Questions pile up, answers come slow—and the clock is ticking for a missing girl.

As Gwen’s past and present collide, she’s in a race for the truth.


Charlotte Holmes is My Favorite Sherlock!

A Conspiracy in Belgravia cover image: a woman in a late 1800's ruffled dress running away in a foggy streetA Conspiracy in Belgravia (Lady Sherlock #2) by Sherry Thomas: I read this a few months back and have not stopped raving about it because it’s one of my favorite series and it’s my favorite Holmes and Sherlock team. Thomas has not only gender-swapped Sherlock and Holmes, but has brilliantly made it so that the quirks we’ve associated with Sherlock aren’t a random personality trait so much as a push-back to society’s treatment of women. It’s so well done. In this second novel, Charlotte and Mrs. Watson are back with a rather delicate case involving a married woman looking to find a past lover–her true love. Scandalous! Making the case super-complicated is the fact that Charlotte knows both the woman’s husband and the true love. It’s packed with mysteries, ladies not here for society’s rules, improper flirting, learning to fight, and more; and I loved every moment of this book!

A Little Q&A: Megan Abbott and Alison Gaylin (I give authors I’m excited about 5 questions and let them answer any three they’d like.)

If you’ve been reading this newsletter for a while you know my love for Abbott–especially, her early noir–so you can imagine how quickly I moved to get my hands on her crime graphic novel: Normandy Gold. After inhaling the first issue, and immediately needing the next issue in the series, I realized it was a duo writing team and that I needed to get my hands on Gaylin’s work pronto! In Normandy Gold you have a detective who goes undercover as a call girl in order to find out what happened to her sister, and it’s set in the ’70s and written by two awesome mystery writers! (illustrated by Steve Scott)

And here’s Abbot and Gaylin:

What would you like to see more/less of in the mystery genre?

Less of….

Megan: Copycat books

Alison: Dead women driving plots.

More of:

Megan: Diversity, of every kind

Alison: Living women driving plots

If you were to blurb your most recent/upcoming book à la James Patterson:

Megan: “Normandy Gold: as if Brian De Palma remade Dirty Harry starring Pam Grier and with a Bernard Hermann score.”

Alison: “To paraphrase one of the characters, Normandy Gold is hotter than Satan’s g-string — and twice as lethal.”

The last book you read that you loved?

Megan: Laura Lippman’s upcoming Sunburn, note-perfect noir and not to be missed.

Alison: I haven’t read Sunburn yet, but I am so excited for it. Also Karen Ellis’ (aka Katia Lief) absolutely riveting psychological thriller, A Map of the Dark, out in January.

Thanks Megan and Alison! I look forward to more Normandy Gold and now have two more books added to my TBR list!

Add Now and Watch on September 15: Strong Island, a Netflix true crime documentary that focuses on racial injustice. Yance Ford takes an emotional and unflinching look at his family’s devastation and lingering pain after the murder of their son and brother, William Ford. Trailer here.

 

A Tale of Four Cities: Must Read International Thrillers via Bookish

On All The Backlist podcast Liberty talked about two very long running mystery series which now I have to read because they sounded interesting: Kinsey Millhone series (has a book for each letter of the alphabet!) and The Cat Who series (a reporter and his Siamese cats who help solve crimes!).

Rincey and Katie talk about mystery writers who have real life mysteries/crimes on Read or Dead!

Psychological Suspense (TRIGGER WARNING: Date rape)

Good Me, Bad MeGood Me Bad Me cover image: a teen girl's face layered with gold and black wash and the title lettering by Ali Land: I’m going to do this review in two parts: first, for those who like to know as little as possible beforehand so they can be surprised by as much as possible; second, a little more for those that need to know what they’re getting into.

1st: Milly is a teen temporarily living with a foster family who has not only taken her in but the father is preparing her for a court appearance. Things are awful for Milly before she arrives and seeing as her foster sister hates her on sight things aren’t going to get any better… (Told in 1st person readers get front row seats to Milly’s thoughts as she navigates this new life while trying to reconcile with the past.)

2nd: Milly’s mum is a serial killer and Milly is the reason she was finally arrested. Now Milly must testify. Between the stress of that, a foster family where the daughter is bullying her, and a new life where no one seems to understand her or know her secrets how is Milly going to come out of any of this?

More Out This Week:

To Funk and Die in LA (D Hunter #4) by Nelson George (Ex-bodyguard tries to solve the shooting of his uncle in LA.)

Miss Kopp’s Midnight Confessions (Kopp Sisters #3) by Amy Stewart (Historical fic based on real Kopp sisters, one of America’s 1st female deputy sheriff.)

That Last Weekend by Laura DiSilverio (Group of friends reunite but is there a killer among them?)

A Murder in Music City: Corruption, Scandal, and the Framing of an Innocent Man by Michael Bishop (True crime)

March of Crime (Murder-By-Month Mystery #11) by Jess Lourey (Funny cozy mystery.)

A Legacy of Spies by John le Carré (George Smiley is back.)

I Found You More Kindle Deals!

Girl Waits with Gun and Lady Cop Makes Trouble by Amy Stewart (1st two in the Kopp Sisters series) are each $2.99

The Nine Mile Walk: The Nicky Welt Stories by Harry Kemelman for $1.99

 

 

Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. And if you like to put a pin in things here’s an Unusual Suspects board.

Until next time, keep investigating! And in the meantime come talk books with me on Twitter and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canaves.