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mystery

Brenda Novak Charms Her Fans With Romance, Mystery, Cookies and a Greek Goddess

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Having written more than 50 novels, Brenda Novak is an expert at pulling our romantic heartstrings. But in addition, a mysterious disappearance forms the backdrop in Before We Were Strangers (MIRA). Inspired by a segment from a true-crime television show, her latest novel is a story of intrigue, mystery, and psychosis. Novak says she watched a show that “featured a woman whose mother went missing when she was small. As the girl grew up, she suspected her father had something to do with it, but she wasn’t sure enough to accuse him, and because there was no solid evidence… Novak couldn’t resist the pull of the question, “Did the father do it?” and wanted to explore the mystery through her…

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Tall Poppy Review: “The Tiger in the House” and Kidnap

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The Tiger in the House

The Tiger in the House (Kensington Publishing) by Jacqueline Sheehan introduces Delia Lamont, who is wrapping up the last month of work at Portland, Maine’s child services agency. She’s ready to open a seaside bakery with her younger sister and start a quieter life. But first, she has one last case to deal with – a five-year-old girl was found wandering along the side of the road, partially dressed and covered in blood. Every clue leading to her family takes Delia deeper into a shadowy web of danger that includes murder, heroin trafficking, and kidnapping. Jacqueline Sheehan has crafted a story that mixes family drama with a healthy dose of suspense and takes the reader on an emotional journey they won’t…

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Unwinding “The Labyrinth of the Spirits”

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Stories have no beginning and no end, only doors through which we may enter them. Internationally acclaimed author Carlos Ruiz Zafón has presented us with many dark and dazzling doors in his Cemetery of Forgotten Books series. In the grand finale of this saga, The Labyrinth of the Spirits (Harper) Ruiz Zafón deftly ties together the many winding plots of his other stories and gives long-awaited closure on past mysteries. As with Ruiz Zafón’s bittersweet writing style, fans will be fully satisfied with his grand hulking conclusion (around 800 pages), and yet saddened to see their favorite characters join on page for the last time. The novel is set in the late 1950s Barcelona when Franco is in power, and follows the alluring…

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Stuart Turton’s Intricate Plot Bends Minds and Genres

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This may very well be the twistiest, most intricate crime novel you’ll read this year. A tall order, I know, given the competition, but trust me on this. The author, Stuart Turton, calls it “an Agatha Christie mystery in a Groundhog Day loop, with a bit of Quantum Leap.” Others have invoked Gosford Park, Inception, and “Downton Abbey with a body count.” They are all correct. The 7 ½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle (Sourcebooks Landmark) opens with the narrator waking up in a remote forest, wearing someone else’s dinner jacket and, he realizes, someone else’s body. Making his way to a large country house, he discovers a party in full swing, and a masked figure who informs him that a murder…

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AuthorBuzz Giveaway: Suspenseful Stories

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An intriguing mystery, a heart-thumping thriller, and a thought-provoking novel are all excellent selections for this week’s AuthorBuzz giveaway. Dear Reader, I’m very excited The Frangipani Tree Mystery is coming out in paperback. The smart, unconventional Su Lin is very loosely based on my grandmother who was the first girl in her province to go to university. She loved trees and stories and I’m sure she would have loved the chance to investigate a dead woman found under a frangipani tree. I based Inspector Le Froy on her hero, Inspector Rene Onraet, who set up Singapore’s Special Branch. Please email [email protected] to win one of five copies. Ovidia Yu https://www.ovidiayu.com/   Dear Reader, Tanzanite. This rare blue-violet gemstone piqued my curiosity and inspired the second Alex Graham thriller, Blue Fire. A daring act reveals an incredible…

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From Shore to Fiction: “Beneath the Lighthouse”

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Julieanne Lynch is the author of Beneath the Lighthouse, an eerie story on ghosts and family tragedy. Today we have the pleasure of learning about her creative process and the inspiration behind her chilling story. But first, here is a taste of her story: Sixteen-year-old Jamie McGuiness’s sister is dead. Sinking into a deep depression, he frequents the lighthouse where her body was discovered, unaware of the sinister forces surrounding him. When an angry spirit latches onto Jamie, he’s led down a dark and twisted path, one that uncovers old family secrets, destroying everything Jamie ever believed in. Caught between the world of the living and the vengeful dead, Jamie fights the pull of the other side. It’s up to Jamie to…

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AuthorBuzz Giveaways: Recovery, Mystery, and Luxury

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Dear Reader, In my forties, I woke up one day and realized I had a drinking problem. In Lush, I examine this struggle I had with alcohol, a struggle many middle-aged women face. But, I didn’t get sober. I dealt with the problems behind the drinking and found I could moderate. Called “Beautifully poignant, fiercely funny, and infinitely relatable,” Lush follows my story as I attempted to rediscover awe in my life and leave my regrets—and the bottle—behind. Write me at [email protected] for a chance to win 1 of 5 copies of the book! http://www.kerry-cohen.com Dear reader, Fans of Louise Penny and her Three Pines residents will feel at home with my whip-smart, quirky, ethical characters who value the strength of their community…

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The Ruinous Sweep: From “Fraggle Rock” to Twisting Thriller

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Tim Wynne-Jones is an author with projects spanning across a diverse array of entertainment, from writing songs for the children’s program Fraggle Rock to writing mind boggling thrillers for adults and young adults. The Ruinous Sweep is a twisting tale split between two perspectives and two worlds. The protagonist Donovan is stuck in a world resembling purgatory with little memory while his girlfriend Bee tries to find answers in reality. When Donovan is charged as a primary suspect for his father’s murder, readers must follow the fragmented path of Donovan’s memories and Bee’s dedicated detective work to find out the truth behind the hazy blur of one fateful night. Though Wynne-Jones is accustomed to working on various forms of entertainment, he…

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4 Indie Bookstores Offer Their Top Suspense Reads

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Sunscreen? Check. Swim suit? Check. Summer suspense? Grab some of these. There’s nothing like a good, gripping tale to help you unwind. We randomly polled four independent bookstores that specialize in murder and mayhem about new bestsellers in the suspense category. Surprisingly, there were no overlaps as each store named four titles selling well, in no particular order: Murder on the Beach Mystery Book Store, Delray Beach, Florida: Cheryl Kravetz, a bookseller at the Murder on the Beach Mystery Book Store, named the following four as her top sellers: 1.) The Woman in the Window by A. J. Finn (William Morrow). A woman returns to her home after a 10-month absence, too terrified to step outside. Shades of Alfred Hitchcock’s “Rear…

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“Ohio” by Stephen Markley Introduces New Voice(s) in American Fiction

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Ohio by Stephen Markley (Simon & Schuster) deserves to be only the first of a series because its characters are worth more than one book, and the story of their America is worth more than one look. This sprawling, spiraling novel begins one summer night in 2013, as four former high school classmates are about to meet again in New Canaan, their Rust Belt Ohio town. Each is traveling from far corners, each bearing memories that must be obeyed and secrets that will be revealed. The book is narrated from each of their viewpoints in a gripping saga that slowly builds into a symphony that hits all the right notes. New Canaan is a snapshot of so many places in…

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Art Teacher in Peril in Kelli Clare’s Debut Novel “Hidden”

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BookTrib is partnering with Bookish to bring you more great content. Can’t decide whether you want your next book to be a romance or a thriller? Never fear: If you pick up Kelli Clare’s debut novel Hidden, you don’t have to choose. This romantic suspense novel follows an art teacher named Ellie James who realizes that her life is in danger. A handsome stranger named Will Hastings appears and claims he will protect her from a bloodthirsty group named the Order, but will his help be enough? To celebrate this book’s June 5 release, check out this exclusive excerpt from the fourth chapter of Hidden. I pounded the side of my fist on the door frame. The police believed we were missing—we’d have to skip the funeral. Not…

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Jon’s Picks: 6 New Thrillers to See You Into Summer

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Having already rocketed to the top tier of action thriller writers, Matthew Betley makes a bid for the highest slot with Field of Valor (Atria, May 22). Betley adds a chilling political, Ludlum-esque direction to his proven skills, pitting series hero Logan West against a sinister, secretive cabal behind a massive global conspiracy. At its heart is a plot to wage geo-economic war intended to pit China and the U.S. against each other in a no-holds-barred battle. Of course, dollars signs and decimal points often lead to bullets and bombs, and it’s up to West to preempt the seemingly inevitable catastrophe. Like Brad Taylor, former marine Betley has lived in the world his work encompasses and, beyond that, his storytelling…

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The New Voice Behind Jessica Fletcher’s ‘Murder, She Wrote’

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I got the call from my agent on a Sunday afternoon last May. “Don Bain isn’t well,” he said, referring to another client who’d penned all 46 titles in the Murder, She Wrote series. “He’s not going to be able to write the ‘Murder, She Wrote’ books anymore. Would you be interested in taking the series over?” It took me all of two seconds to respond.  “Absolutely,” I said. Of course, at that point I had no idea what I was in for because I’d never read a single book in the series, although I was a huge fan of the spectacularly successful television show on which they were based. I’d also never written in first person, much less from…

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Seduced by Trotsky’s Assassin: John P. Davidson tells the inside story

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Paris, 1938. A young social worker from Brooklyn, Sylvia Ageloff was in the French capitol to study the language. And as a member of Leon Trotsky’s inner circle, she was also an American delegate to an organizational meeting of the Russian revolutionary’s followers. And, marked by Josef Stalin’s secret agents, Sylvia was about to become a pawn in the plot to kill Trotsky, as John P. Davidson depicts in The Obedient Assassin: A Novel Based on a True Story (Delphinium Press, February 2014). Bookish, bespectacled, and Jewish, Sylvia was swept off her feet by a handsome, mysterious aristocrat. “She fell in love,” says Davidson, “and because she was in love, she missed clue after clue, and turned a blind eye…

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ICYMI: ‘Killing Jane’ Takes Jack the Ripper By the Throat

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I liked this book very much and would give it five stars!  It was well written and the characters were fully developed.  All in all, a great thriller and we’re hoping there will be more to come from this author. Murders mimicking the savagery of the most infamous serial killer of all time abound in Stacy Green’s mystery/thriller, Killing Jane, which remind us that violence can surface at any time and come from the most unlikely sources. What if Jack the Ripper was really Jane the Ripper? This new book poses this question based on a theory of a London cop from the 19th century that Jack was really a woman. Washington D.C. police detective Erin Prince discovers, as her…

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9 Books for Fans of ‘Murder on the Orient Express’

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The latest adaptation of Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express has finally hit theaters. Actor Kenneth Branagh stars as the iconic French sleuth Hercule Poirot, whose train journey is derailed by the murder of a notorious passenger. As one might expect from an adaptation of the Queen of Crime’s works, there are as many red herrings as there are potential suspects, and such close quarters creates a palpable sense of menace. Once violence breaks out on board, there’s nowhere to run—forcing predator and prey to sit side by side. The release has gotten us thinking about our other favorite mysteries—especially those set on trains. From a Patricia Highsmith classic to Poirot’s very first investigation, these books are perfect reads…

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