Sunday, June 1, 2014

Books Read April 2014

Abbott, Rachel
  • Sleep Tight 
Fiction.  3rd in a mystery series starring DI Tom Douglas.  A woman is waylaid outside a pub on her way home, while someone watches from the dark.  Soon after begins a long and winding series of crimes surrounding the woman and the man in the shadows.

Castle, Angela
  • Tiger Mine 
Fiction.  An Australian woman is getting over her recent divorce by moving back to her grandfather’s old cabin in the mountains, when she suddenly finds herself sharing the space with a very large Siberian tiger.  The next day, the tiger is gone, but a knock at her door brings her face to face with a mesmerizingly handsome man with a Russian accent who is in need of work.   The cabin needs quite a bit of work done on it, so she hires the man, not knowing that he will bring danger to her doorstep.

Fifield, Christy
  • Murder Buys a T-Shirt
Fiction.  1st in a paranormal cozy mystery set in the Florida panhandle.  Glory Martine owns an antique/souvenir shop left to her by her great-uncle Louis.  Bluebeard, the irascible blue parrot, in also part of the inheritance.  While out bargain-hunting with her best friend, Karen, they come across the scene of a terrible accident, one that has claimed the life of the star football player.  Bluebeard has other ideas about the cause of the crash.

Harkness, Deborah
  • A Discovery of Witches
Fiction.  First in a trilogy.  Diana Bishop is a hereditary witch who refuses to use magic or witchcraft, instead relying upon science as defining the basis of life.  Her beliefs are sorely tested when she encounters a strange and alluring man, a fellow scholar, who happens to be a vampire.  In a world populated by humans, witches, vampires and daemons, the two come together in an explosion that rocks the entire scope of life on the planet.

Hillerman, Tony
  • Dance Hall of the Dead
Fiction.  Joe Leaphorn, Navajo policeman, is searching for a young boy who has disappeared, seemingly either a murderer or an innocent bystander.  Leaphorn is caught up in the Zuni mystical beliefs, as he traces the footsteps of this boy in the sand.

Hinton, S.E.
  • Hawkes Harbor 
Fiction.  A young man is delivered to a mental asylum in a straitjacket and in the back of a police cruiser.  Dr. McDermitt sees Jamie Sommers as a patient rather than a criminal, but wonders if he can repair all the damage Jamie has suffered over the years.  From pirating in the South China sea to a haunting wreck of an old mansion, Jamie’s past and present collide the day he meets The Monster.

Hugener, Rosy & Carl
  • Xtabentum
Fiction.  Saga of a wealthy Mexican family and the servants they thought of as family.

James, Miranda
  • Out of Circulation 
Fiction.  4th book in the cozy mystery series set in Athena, Mississippi.  Charlie and Diesel, his 36-pound Maine Coon cat, find themselves embroiled in yet another murder and must go back in time to find the killer.

Johnson, Craig
  • Death Without Company
Fiction.  3rd in the Longmire series set in Wyoming.  Sheriff Walt Longmire is called in by his longtime friend and predecessor to investigate a seemingly natural death.  He wasn’t planning on investigating it until his friend tells him who the woman is.  Still not convinced that a murder has been committed, Walt decides to do some basic sleuthing that uncovers a horrendous story that began fifty years in the past that affects lives from the present.

Kempton, Gloria
  • Dialogue 
Non-fiction.  Instruction on how to create good dialogue in our stories.  Do’s and don’t’s, examples, and exercises.

King, Stephen
  • The Green Mile 
Fiction.  Two young girls are raped and murdered, and the man found clutching their torn bodies soon ends up on death row.  Head guard, Paul Edgecombe, has seen many prisoners walk that last mile to the electric chair, but he’s never met another one quite like John Coffey.

MacAllister, Katie
  • You Slay Me
Fiction.  First in a paranormal mystery series.  Aisling Grey is couriering an extremely valuable gold dragon to its new owner in France, only to find the new owner dead, hanging from a chandelier.  Perhaps Aisling should have heeded those feelings of absolute dread she had when she approached the building.  Things get ever worse as Aisling is suspected of being the murderer.

McClendon, Lise
  • The Bluejay Shaman 
Fiction.  First in the Alix Thorrsen cozy mystery series.  Alex owns an art gallery in Jackson, Wyoming with her partner, Paolo.  She is hired to authenticate and research a truck full of artwork that was seized by the police in her hometown of Missoula, Montana.  Staying with her sister and her brother-in-law while she works there, Alix suddenly finds out that a woman has been murdered, and her brother-in-law has been arrested for the murder.  Native spirituality, New Age spiritualists, and local academics come together in this tale.

McCourtney, Lorena
  • In Plain Sight 
Fiction.  Second in the cozy mystery series staring Ivy Malone.  Ivy is contemplating leaving town to escape the family of thugs who are stalking her after she sends one of them to prison.  Serendipity shines, when her niece and her husband accept a job transfer to Hawai’i, leaving their house in Arkansas empty.  Ivy jumps at the chance to not only watch over the house, but also to keep tabs on her great-niece who wants to finish the school year with her friends.  Ivy’s curiosity about an aloof neighbor gets her into trouble when that neighbor is found murdered, and Ivy is the one who finds her.

Mucha, Susan Polonus
  • Deadly Deception 
Fiction.  1st in the Elia Christie/Luis Echevarria mystery series.  From Georgia to Peru, this fast-paced story begins with a murder on a golf course and is tied up with the illegal drug industry and ancient South American artifacts.

Meier, Leslie
  • Valentine Murder 
Fiction.  6th in the Lucy Stone cozy series set in Maine.  Lucy arrives to her first meeting as part of the library’s board of directors, only to find that this meeting is complicated by the discovery of a body.

Olson, Karen E.
  • The Missing Ink
Fiction.  1st in a cozy mysteries series set in Las Vegas.  Brett owns an upscale tattoo parlor, and a woman enters asking for a devotion tattoo.  She says her name is Kelly Masters and makes an appointment for the next day, but she never shows up.  The next thing Brett hears is that a Kelly Masters has been murdered, only it’s not the woman who came to her shop.

Salinger, J.D.
  • The Catcher in the Rye
Fiction.  Classic.  Manic look into the mind of a male going through puberty with a touch of schizophrenia.

Salzmann, Cyndy
  • Dying to Decorate 
Fiction.  Christian cozy mystery without deaths.  A group of friends gather together once a week for the Friday Afternoon Club (FAC).  They support each other and go on adventures.  One of them inherits a house, and while cleaning it out, they discover a hidden room, one that contains many secrets.

Stabenow, Dana
  • Dead in the Water
Fiction.  3rd in the cozy mystery series set in Alaska.  Kate Shugak has been assigned to investigate the disappearance of two crab men off the ship Avilda.  She signs on to work the crab pots, though it’s not often that women are allowed on the boats due to the hard physical labor, the male chauvinistic view of the men on board, and the trouble having a female working among them can cause.  Kate works hard to combat all of those issues, but finds herself in real danger.

Stowe, Lisa
  • The Memory Keeper
Fiction.  Mystery set in picturesque Wallace, Idaho.  Cody misses the grandfather she’d only known for two months before his death and travels to his hometown of Wallace to find people that might remember him, so that she can get to know him better, and perhaps herself as well.  Old secrets die hard, as Cody comes to find out when a dying man stumbles across her path.

Woodworth, Deborah
  • Death of a Winter Shaker

Fiction.  First in a cozy series set in a Kentucky Shaker village.  Sister Rose, trustee of North Homage, works hard to keep to the Shaker ways while still recognizing that they need to compromise in some ways with the outer world, while the elder of the village wants to return to the old, and very austere, ways.  Gennie, a young orphan who has not yet taken the oath to join the community, enjoys her work in the Herbal House, but is horrified one day to find it has been desecrated by a body.

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