Jan 16, 2018

Chalk Man, C.J. Tudor

The world looks different when you’re 12. Friends will be there for life, adults are ancient and talk about you and your friends in whispers. Ed and his friends devise a code that only they understand and during the 1986 summer holidays it leads them to the site of a gruesome murder.

Fast forward to 2016. Ed is now an English teacher, living in the same small village and someone is stirring up the decades old crime hoping to profit. Problem is the real killer is still close and ready to kill again.

Jan 15, 2018

Dominic, Mark Pryor

This is not a Hugo Marston story.

A couple of years ago Pryor wrote a standalone called 'Hollow Man' about a high functioning sociopath named Dominic. It was an enjoyable read and even though Dominic was the bad guy protagonist you couldn't help liking and dare I say it, pulling for him. In 'Dominic' the story supposedly wrapped up  in 'Hollow Man' begins again with a determined cop who wonders if Dominic actually got away with murder. Dominic's co-worker swipes one of Dominic's cases and applies for a position that Dominic decides he wants and his 'special lady' Elizabeth's baby sociopath brother does something really dumb.

Can Dominic scheme his way out of this?  All I can tell you is someone's going to end up dead, maybe several someones. Maybe even Dominic himself.

Night Market, Jonathan Moore

Near future noir, set in San Francisco. Fans of Blake Crouch and Dean Koontz's Jane Hawk series should eat this up.

The City by the Bay is in the grip of mindless consumerism. Whatever the next new thing is, everyone wants it even if they can't afford it and it'll be delivered to their window by drone.

SFPD Homicide Inspectors Jenner and Carver are called to a suspicious death, they don't get very far before their scene is invaded by the FBI. Ross Carver wakes up in his own apartment 3 days later with a killer headache and a swiss-cheesed memory. His neighbour, Mia, a women Carver has heard but never seen is sitting beside him, keeping him company. She tells him the men who brought him back told her that Carver had been poisoned, but his station Chief is adamant that Carver has had the flu and they've been emailing over the weekend. Carver, not sure he can trust his own partner, let alone the mysterious Mia begins piecing together what those who control the city would rather he forgot.

Jan 2, 2018

In The Shadow of Agatha Christie, edited by Leslie S. Klinger

When we think of the genesis of female mystery writers, Christie is at the top of the list followed closely by Dorothy L. Sayers. Most readers would be hard pressed to name another woman who wrote as prolifically; yet there are hundreds. 

In this entertaining anthology Leslie Klinger has brought together almost two dozen of these ‘forgotten females’ including Catherine Crow, Mary Fortune, Harriet Prescott Spofford, Elizabeth Corbett and Carolyn Wells. Their stories range from the saga of the missing earring, ghostly goings on in Brighton, the testimony of an innocent man and some female detectives who wouldn’t look out of place in a Christie novel. A thoroughly enjoyable collection. It could be high time for these novelists’ work to be rediscovered.

Dec 5, 2017

Blood Truth, Matt Coyle

Readers of this blog will know my penchant for discovering a series in the middle and having to go back and start over, well it's happened again. Great noir, set in San Diego.

PI Rick Cahill’s disgraced ex-cop father Charlie, keeps coming back to haunt him.

He’s called to his childhood home, the renovators have found something hidden away in the walls; a safe that belonged to Charlie. Rick, in the middle of a case with personal overtones (his client is former girlfriend Kim.) arranges to have the safe opened. 

The contents appear to prove that Charlie Cahill was dirty. What Rick doesn’t realize is that he’s been watched all this time, by powerful people who've killed before and will kill again to keep their secrets buried. And as if that wasn’t bad enough, he’s a murder suspect. Again.

Her Beautiful Monster, Adi Tantimedh

Second in the Golden Sentinels PI trilogy. Ravi and the team of genius misfits from Sentinels’ London office defraud a fraudster, seek the beneficiaries of a Russian oligarch’s will and get caught up in an ICE raid during some gnarly fires in LA and that’s just the official stuff.
Unofficially, Olivia is ‘vacationing’ a la Crazy Rich Asians in Hong Kong; attempting to free a publisher from Chinese clutches. Benjamin is happily drowning in NDAs, a small price to pay for piloting top secret driverless cars and drones around LA and Ravi is trying to stop his family from getting into bed with the local loan shark whilst trying to reignite some parental passions. And all the while the gods are gathering because Ravi is about to unleash some serious chaos and they want a ringside seat.

You Can Run, Steve Mosby

No one is going to catch the Red River Killer he’s too smart for the police to apprehend him. He didn’t count on dumb luck, though. A freak accident exposes his hideout and rescues his intended victim. Soon a manhunt is underway for Blythe the killer on the run; he seeks help from the worm, a witness who has kept Blythe’s crimes a terrible secret for reasons too twisted to explain. When the husband of one of the victims questions the number of bodies recovered; Detective Inspectors Emma Beck and Will Turner get a feeling that they aren’t seeing the whole picture. 

Will wants to solve this case, one of his exes was an early victim of the Red River Killer a secret that even Emma doesn’t know. With the press on their backs and their superiors breathing down their necks an unlikely hero emerges but Will still senses something, amiss, something, contrived and he and Emma have got 72 hours to nail this case shut or watch a killer walk into the arms of an adoring press.