March Mystery Favs

Called to prevent a naked woman from jumping from a bridge, psychologist Joe O’Loughlin tries to talk to her down, only to watch, horrified, as she casts herself into the oblivion of the river. She has a cell phone in her hand, and even while authorities try to discover who she’s been talking to, why she would leave a life she liked, a daughter she adored, another woman dies under similar circumstance. Shatter is a dark book, but like the mesmerizing Night Ferry, a mystery you won’t put down and are not likely to forget. – Betsy Burton

A “spy from the old school,” a man with too many names and too much history who has worked for the government for far too long, meets the new world head-on in The Tourist, a hugely intelligent thriller. Milo has finally found a woman and child he loves and is building a home for himself when he’s sent to interrogate an assassin he’s tracked for a long time, a man who, it turns out, has been betrayed by his paymaster. The complex plot that ensues, the big cast of multifaceted and all-too-plausible characters we meet, make this a novelistic thriller in the fine tradition of Le Carre. Indeed, it might well evoke The Spy Who Came In From the Cold–except that the cold of this new century is far more chilling than anything the old one had to offer. – Betsy Burton

Cara Black’s detective, Aimee Leduc, lives in a Paris filled with characters from France’s colonial past and diverse present.   Her novels are filled with immigrants from Vietnam, Algeria, Eastern Europe, and, in Murder in the Latin Quarter, Haiti.  Aimee’s life is a lonely one since the death of her father, so, when a beautiful young Haitian woman announces that she is Aimee’s sister, she cannot resist the search for the truth.  The woman exudes danger and leads the detective through a series of adventures in an underground Haitian society of Paris.  Corruption will be found in both the upper classes and the lowlifes of the city and Aimee meets them both.  She inevitably falls for a “bad boy” while her friend and “good guy,” Rene, pines quietly for her.  Rene, the stable force in her life, offers the reader clues to Black’s next edition in the adventures of Aimee Leduc and her Paris.  As a faithful reader of the Cara Black novels, I want to recommend reading them from the beginning of the series and watching the growth and development of a fine mystery writer. – Wendy Foster Leigh

The Alexander Cipher is a fast paced chase across Egypt with a good dose of the history of Alexander and some complicated interpersonal relationships to keep the story moving. Present day Alexandria where corruption is a part of life and the Supreme Council for Antiquities has the authority to start or close down excavations at will. Discovering an ancient burial ground on a hotel construction site triggers a series of events that could uncover the final resting place of one of the greatest warriors in history Alexander the Great. In the hunt are the head of the SCA, the rich and powerful Dragoumis family and a group of archaeologists linked by more than just their profession. Dragoumis and his son seek the body of the real Alexander a symbol that they can use to incite the Macedonian people to rise up and take back their homeland from the Greeks and they don’t care who they have to go through to get it.  – Paula Longhurst

In Revenge of the Spellmans, the third of our visits to Spellman world, Izzy’s latest hobby case Ernie Black,  whose wife may or may not be having an affair, seems like a simple surveillance job. But if it’s so simple why is a rival PI firm following Izzy around? Why is her father so keen on lunch all of a sudden and what’s with all the life changes? Henry Stone is dating. Younger sister Rae can almost be charged as an adult, brother David has turned from successful lawyer to eco warrior. Everyone is evolving or moving on–only Izzy remains static. In court-ordered therapy and squatting in David’s basement apartment, she has a month to decide whether to take over the family PI business or have it sold out from under her. The Spellmans still put the fun in dysfunctional and the characters grow with every book. A great read. – Paula Longhurst

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One Response to March Mystery Favs

  1. Britt says:

    I love the Spellmans! And The Alexander Cipher sounds really interesting!

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