Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The Hidden Girl by Louise Millar

With their marriage unraveling because of their inability to have a child, Hannah and Will move to the small village of Tornley. Their new home, Tornley Hall, needs a lot of work to get it ready for a visit in two weeks time from Barbara, who will help decide if they will be able to adopt a child. Soon, more cracks soon form in Hannah and Will's relationship, as Will spends his time in London working and Hannah finds herself involved with mysterious happenings in the house, nasty neighbors, and buried secrets. A page turner similar to Beneath the Shadows by Sara Foster and Hold My Hand by Serena Mackesy.

The Burning Room by Michael Connelly

Harry Bosch is paired with newbie detective Lucia Soto to investigate the murder of mariachi musician Orlando Merced. Merced was shot ten years ago, but only recently died--the bullet had been lodged in his spine since the shooting. Bosch and Soto delve into the original investigation of the case and try to find who would've wanted Merced dead. Bosch also becomes involved in another cold case, the Bonnie Brae fire of 1993, in which nine people lost their lives. Soto was one of the children who survived the fire and, now, having become an LAPD detective, has secretly been looking at the old files to find out who was responsible. The Burning Room shows Connelly is still in top form after all these years, giving the reader an engaging mystery and characters you really care about. It will be published in November.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Three Story House by Courtney Miller Santo

Lizzie and her step-cousins, Elyse and Isobel, have been like sisters to each other since they were children. Now, all three find themselves floundering as they near thirty. Lizzie, a professional soccer player, has torn her ACL for the third time and worries that she's past her peak. She also has a distant, frosty relationship with her mother, who has kept the identity of Lizzie's father a secret. Elyse, meanwhile, is nursing a broken heart when she learns that her younger sister is marrying Landon, the love of Elyse's life. Isobel is finding the transition from child television star to adulthood difficult, even though she has a possible new career (her father taught her home renovation skills as she was growing up). The "Triplins" find themselves living together in Lizzie's grandmother's quirky-yet-rundown house in Memphis as they try to move to the next phases of their lives. I really loved Santo's first novel, The Roots of the Olive Tree and was hoping that Three Story House would be equally good. Unfortunately, I just didn't connect emotionally as deeply with the characters and story as I did in her debut.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Personal by Lee Child

Someone has tried to assassinate the president of France from such a great distance that there are very few suspects in the whole world. Jack Reacher is asked to assist on the case because one of the possible shooters is someone he put in prison years ago, but is now free. Soon, Reacher realizes that the suspect, John Kott, wants revenge against Reacher for putting him in prison. Will Reacher, with the help of the State Department's Casey Nice, be able to unravel the truth about who the guilty man is before anyone else comes to harm? While I always enjoy touching base with the character of Reacher, the plot of this novel, set mostly in Europe with a bit of international espionage, didn't really appeal to me.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Malice by Keigo Higashino

When writer Kunihiko Hidaka is found murdered in his home, detective Kyoichiro Kaga immediately suspects Hidaka's friend, Osamu Nonoguchi is the killer--but can he prove it? Malice details the cat-and-mouse game between the two, as Kaga delves into the friendship between Hidaka and Nonoguchi and his attempts to get Nonoguchi to confess. The mystery is an interesting puzzle that keeps you guessing until the end. It will be published in October.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

The Handsome Man's Deluxe Cafe by Alexander McCall Smith

In this latest mystery in the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series, Mma Ramotswe and Mma Makutsi are hired by Mr. Sengupta to find out if the woman that he's taken into his home really has amnesia or if she's faking for some reason. Mma Makutsi is also starting a new business venture, The Handsome Man's Deluxe Cafe. While she has the funds to set up the restaurant and hire staff, she is not so experienced in what it takes to run a successful restaurant. In addition, the detective agency gets it's third employee, Charlie, whom Mma Ramotswe takes under her wing when he's let go from Tlokweng Speedy Motors, her husband's business right next door. Will Charlie's being young and having a completely different work ethic from the ladies make him a good fit for the agency? In typical fashion, McCall Smith focuses on the relationships between the characters with a bit of mystery thrown in.  It will be published in October.

To Dwell in Darkness by Deborah Crombie

Detective Superintendent Duncan Kincaid, recently returned from paternity leave, has been demoted to the Holborn Police Station from Scotland Yard. When a young man dies while setting off a bomb in the St. Pancras underground, Duncan and his team try to discover his identity and motive.  On the home front, Duncan and his wife, DI Gemma James, wrestle with disappointing their three children, who want to keep all five kittens that the stray cat they've found gave birth to. In To Dwell in Darkness, the personal lives of Duncan, Gemma, their children, and colleagues Doug and Melody are given equal footing to the mystery. It will be published next month.