Mystery Thriller Book Reviews

PERISH THE DAY by John Farrow
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 23, 2017

"'Truth is a bastard,' the motto of Farrow's sage sleuth, couldn't be more accurate this time. The revelations about the Dowbiggin community he ends up unearthing are as sordid as they are wildly implausible."
Canadian novelist Trevor Ferguson's sixth pseudonymous outing packs retired Montreal police detective Émile Cinq-Mars and his wife, Sandra, off to Holyoake, New Hampshire, where their plans to attend their niece Caroline's graduation and Sandra's dying mother are swiftly upstaged by a homicide spree. Read full book review >
SIDNEY CHAMBERS AND THE PERSISTENCE OF LOVE by James Runcie
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 23, 2017

"Fans of the series may appreciate the continuing tales of beloved characters, thick with references to previous adventures and tragedies, but newcomers will be left out in the cold."
Archdeacon Sidney Chambers (Sidney Chambers and the Dangers of Temptation, 2016, etc.) is torn between his vocations as detective and as Anglican priest in six interlinked stories set amid the discontent of 1970s Britain. Read full book review >

THE DYING DETECTIVE by Leif G.W. Persson
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 23, 2017

"A knotty, sinuous story that leads to a hard-won resolution—and a decidedly conclusive end."
Swedish mysterian Persson (Linda, As in the Linda Murder, 2016, etc.) brings a memorable creation to a close in this pensive whodunit. Read full book review >
LAST SEEN by J.L. Doucette
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 23, 2017

"A missing person tale with a strong setting and cast of characters."
A girl is gone and psychologist Dr. Pepper Hunt, the last person to see her alive, joins the investigation in this mystery-franchise debut. Read full book review >
THE LONG DROP by Denise Mina
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 23, 2017

"A terrific exploration of crime and oppression."
Hard men work their will in 1950s Glasgow. Read full book review >

BLACK MAD WHEEL by Josh Malerman
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 23, 2017

"Dark, brooding, and slightly unhinged, Malerman's unusually compelling second novel is certifiably unlike any you'll read this year."
In 1957, faded Detroit rockers the Danes were hired by the U.S. government to investigate a malevolent sound emanating from Africa's Namib Desert. Having had every bone in his body shattered by the sound, or something, Danes leader Philip Tonka lies in an Iowa hospital making a rapid recovery—too rapid, thinks his devoted nurse. Read full book review >
ENEMY OF THE GOOD by Matthew Palmer
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 23, 2017

"A fine read with a heroine too honorable to shoot the dog."
Katarina Hollister is a second-generation U.S. foreign service officer who's been expelled from Cuba on her first tour and sent to Kyrgyzstan, her late mother's homeland. Read full book review >
STICKS AND BONES by Carolyn Haines
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 16, 2017

"The mystery, past and present, isn't up to much, and Haines doesn't know any more about filmmaking than you do. But who else would create a climactic scene of which one witness observes: 'I've never seen a woman give birth and do a vault onto a man's shoulders'?"
Hollywood roars into Zinnia, Mississippi, along with several less welcome blasts. Read full book review >
DEATH IN THE ABSTRACT by Emily Barnes
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 16, 2017

"The second case for Barnes' heroine uses a relatively simple mystery to showcase the many talents of a tough and resilient woman."
A retired police chief uses her skills to help out an old friend in trouble. Read full book review >
THE SECOND DAY OF THE RENAISSANCE by Timothy Williams
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 16, 2017

"There's some confusion in the piecemeal mosaic of complex episodes and speculations from Trotti's past, but it's hard to resist Williams (Big Italy, 2015, etc.) as he unfolds his tale in tiny, deliciously wry narrative nuggets—100 titled chapters of puckish literary pointillism."
In his sixth outing, a retired detective tries to determine the identity of a clever killer who's seeking revenge against him. Read full book review >
BLUE FIELD by Elise Levine
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 16, 2017

"A transgressive, gut-wrenching portrayal of grief that asks what it's like to drown."
A deeply damaged woman flirts with death in the depths of underwater caves. Read full book review >
EDITED OUT by E.J. Copperman
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 16, 2017

"Copperman, whose autistic sleuth, Samuel Hoenig (The Question of the Felonious Friend, 2016, etc.) can be quite charming, doesn't yet have a handle on whether to play his new detective straight, fantastical, or just plain nuts. If he doesn't jump soon, his new franchise threatens to go quickly from whimsy to tedium."
A mystery writer continues to be plagued by one of her characters. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >