Sunday, December 14, 2014

The Skeleton Road by Val McDermid

When the bones of a man are found hidden away in a building about to be torn down in Edinburgh, DCI Karen Pirie--as head of the Historic Case Unit--is put in charge. With help from a friend who's a forensic anthropologist, they are able to determine that the person died between five and ten years ago. In Oxford, professor Maggie Blake still misses her boyfriend, Dimitar Petrovic, who left her eight years ago--which was about the time someone started carrying out vigilante justice by murdering Serbian men involved in atrocities during the Balkan War. Is Petrovic, a Croatian, the one who's been avenging the violence against his people or was it his skeleton up of the roof of the old building? In this mystery, Val McDermid brings back detective Karen Pirie from her book, A Darker Domain, to explore and unravel the mystery of Dimitar Petrovic's life.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Until You're Mine by Samantha Hayes

Claudia Morgan-Brown is soon to have her first child when she hires nanny Zoe Harper. Claudia lives with her two young stepsons and husband, James, who is away weeks at a time with his job in the Navy. However, Zoe is not who she seems and is spying on the family. The reader also knows that she's planning leaving her job when the baby is born. Meanwhile, married detectives Lorraine and Adam are investigating a series of murders of pregnant women around Birmingham. As the story progresses, the reader wonders if Claudia will be next or if the police will be able to stop the brutal deaths.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Accidents Happen by Louise Millar

Kate Parker has suffered two tragedies in her life--the death of her parents on her wedding day and then the murder of her husband, Hugo. She is now a shadow of her former self and struggles to live a normal life with her son, Jack. Worried about his safety, she is obsessed with the statistical probabilities of all the things that could go wrong in their lives. Her relationship with her in-laws and sister-in-law (Hugo's family) is also disintegrating. However, hope comes when she meets a man named Jago Martin, who slowly helps Kate face her fears and start living again.  Will Kate get the happiness she deserves--or just more sorrow? A good read-alike for Erin Kelly.

Friday, November 14, 2014

The Kind Worth Killing by Peter Swanson

Ted Severson meets a stranger, Lily Kintner, in an airport bar, whereupon he vents his anger at his wife, Miranda's infidelity and says he wants to "kill her." Lily then encourages Ted to go ahead and murder Miranda--in fact, Lily will even help him. What follows is an exploration of jealousy, attraction, and greed wrapped in a suspenseful contemporary noir. Despite a few implausibilities, Swanson has written a novel that is unpredictable and keeps the reader guessing until the end. It will be published in February.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

A Pleasure and a Calling by Phil Hogan

William Heming owns a successful real estate agency. In his spare time he likes to spy on those that he's done business with over the last seventeen years.  His hobby is made much easier by the fact that he's made copies of the house keys from the residences that he's sold. When a dead body is found in one of Heming's client's homes, it might just lead to his undoing...  A Pleasure and a Calling explores Heming's life from childhood to the present in all it's dreadful detail.  It will be published in January.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Murder at the Brightwell by Ashley Weaver

Amory Ames spends her days alone in her country house while her husband, Milo, travels to Monte Carlo and the Riviera without her. She wonders if she made the wrong decision in marrying Milo, who is known as a playboy. When her old friend (and ex-fiancee) Gil Trent asks for Amory's help in convincing his sister Emmeline to break off her relationship with Rupert Howe (a man very much like Milo), she agrees and they travel to the seaside Brightwell Hotel. Soon, however, Rupert is murdered, probably pushed over a cliff. Several people knew of Gil's intense dislike for Rupert, which makes him the prime suspect. Amory knows he's innocent and decides she must do all she can to clear his name. When Milo arrives, the tension between Amory, Gil, and Milo intensifies. Will Amory be able to help Gil, despite being an emotional muddle? Murder at the Brightwell is a historical mystery (set in 1932) that will appeal to readers who enjoy Tasha Alexander, Deanna Raybourn, and the Royal Spyness series by Rhys Bowen.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Fear the Darkness by Becky Masterman

Retired FBI agent Brigid Quinn, making good on a promise to her just-deceased sister-in-law, Marylin, lets Marylin's daughter, Gemma-Kate, live with her and her husband, Carlo, as Gemma-Kate prepares to attend the University of Arizona.  When one of Brigid's dogs is poisoned and she starts feeling sick herself, Brigid wonders if something is really wrong with her health or if someone is trying to make her seriously ill. Could her current state also have something to do with her investigation into the death of teenager Joseph Neilsen?  In this second novel in the Brigid Quinn series, Masterman writes a page turner that should appeal to readers who enjoy Sue Grafton.  It will be published in January.