Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Splinter The Silence with Val McDermid

Splinter The Silence
By Val McDermid

                Here’s a Thriller mystery novel that could easily be tomorrow’s news headline.  How dangerous are these internet trolls?  See what could possibly happen when some of your worst imagined fears about venomous, online attackers come true in fiction.  This plot is a timely look at the psychological impacts on human nature from the loud and broad reach of the internet.

                In this case women broadcast on the internet adamant stands on different issues they are passionate about, and as a result they become targets, and later end up dead.  But is it suicide, or murder?  Is the antagonism they experience on the web so harsh they can no longer live with themselves?  It looks like that.  Or is there a stalker who is a serial killer, lurking online looking for his victims.

                This tense thriller will have you white knuckled when you’re typing your next online tweet or update.  It’s part of the Tony Hill and Carol Jordan award winning Thriller series.  This is a police procedural that includes fascinating details and professional acumen of the British police team.  At the onset of this novel, Carol Jordan has really hit bottom in her personal life.  She’s recovering from a deep grief, and searching for some kind of purpose to her life after shattering changes.  As she reunites with Tony Hill, psychologist, and gains an unexpected second chance, she’ll be sorely tested because the stakes are high.  There’s no certainty that Carol can pull herself together.  The other detectives on her team are impressive, but each has a different and interesting Achilles heel.  You’ll enjoy getting to know each of these characters and how they work through their individual flaws to bring a contribution to the investigative team.

                This author, Val McDermid, is known as Britain’s Queen of Crime.  The suspense that she builds in her books is phenomenal.  The characters she creates, including the villain, arouse your curiosity about, what your own reaction would be in their situation?  Then, what will they do next?  Nothing is predictable, in any way.  Val McDermid is the bestselling author of more than thirty novels, translated into forty languages.  Her individual books have won many prizes and awards.  She lives in Scotland.

                And if the secrets of real forensic science fascinate you, I also recommend Val McDermid’s non-fiction book Forensics What Bugs, Burns, Prints, DNA, and More Tell Us About Crime.  It’s incredible to read about how far science has come to produce reliable evidence.  The scientific improvements are explained so that a reader can appreciate the work.  Also highlighted is the unwavering commitment of specific people through history who were determined to improve truth in evidence.  They recognized that justice is at stake.

And if you want to hear more from the author, tune into Kendall & Cooper Talk Mysteries with Val McDermid

Gayle Lynds Targets The Assassins

The Assassins
By Gayle Lynds

                “To say that assassination never solved anything is as inaccurate as saying crime never pays.  Or that all assassins come to a bad end.” – The Book of Assassins, George Fetherling.

                This quote describes part of the fast-paced plot in Gayle Lynds’ chilling international espionage Thriller.  Six master assassins, legendary each in his own ways, band together to steal a fortune from the middle of a war zone.  Not just any fortune, it’s Saddam Hussein’s missing billion dollar fortune.  Their mission goes terribly wrong and they retreat into invisibility.  Now they’re coming back, for what they feel is due them.  Is there honor among assassins?

                Former military spy Judd Ryder sees a man coming out of his row house and the man looks just like him, wearing his clothes.  Suddenly the imposter is killed by a deliberate hit-and-run.  A similar, strange incident occurs with CIA trainee Eva Blake.  They’re being used as a means to an end, but to what end?  This is part of the Judd Ryder books series, but also stands well on its own, so go ahead and sit on the edge of your seat when you open this cover.

                A large part of the fascination of this read is learning about some of the tricks of the trade that comes from the in depth training of spies, whether the spies are government or freelance.  This author certainly has the background to insure credibility in this genre.  Bestselling and award winning author of ten international espionage novels, she began her writing career as an investigative reporter.  Later she was an editor with rare Top Secret security clearance at a government think tank.  She became intrigued and inspired and learned a lot.  Soon she began writing short stories and then on to her own novels, as well as the Cover-One Series that she created with Robert Ludlum.  She’s a member of the Association for Former Intelligence Officers and she cofounded the International Thriller Writers organization.  The celebrated annual convention in New York is ThrillerFest.

                The Assassins is winner of the Military Writers Society of America Founder’s Award.  It’s filled with clandestine encounters in exotic sites around the world, tentative alliances, hidden agendas, precision fighting, and lots of secrets.  And as Gayle Lynds quotes J. Edgar Hoover, “there’s something about a secret that’s addicting.”

And if you want to hear more from the author, tune into Kendall & Cooper Talk Mysteries with Gayle Lynds

Thursday, October 19, 2017

A Ghostly Murder, A Spirited Read

A Ghostly Murder
By Tonya Kappes

Here’s an amateur mystery sleuth who believes in justice for all, even the ghostly. Emma Lee Raines has discovered that she is able to see and talk with ghosts.  These spirits who are visiting her are “Betweeners” who are unable to “cross over” because they’ve got unfinished business.  As mortals, they were murdered and their murderers have not been found and brought to justice, yet.  But now Emma Lee has been persuaded to investigate.

In this novel, part of the Ghostly Southern Mysteries series, someone killed Mamie Sue Preston, the richest woman of Sleepy Hollow, Kentucky.  She was a hypochondriac and when she died everyone thought she’d finally succumb from a real illness.  Now it looks like it was murder, and Mamie herself is telling Emma Lee her own theories and suspects.  But Emma Lee is turning up some interesting clues of her own.  Others in the town have their own motives for trying to misdirect evidence and frame certain town residents.  The twists are ingenious, and it all heats up when our amateur sleuth teams up with boyfriend Sheriff Jack Henry Ross, who is an exciting Southern gentleman, and can be less than enthusiastic about these other-worldly connections.

The settings for this series are the delightful small towns of the South, specifically in Kentucky.  The beautiful scenery is vividly described and plays a role in the plotting.  The cast of characters are such fun, leaving you feeling that y’all have enjoyed a charming vacation away.

Tonya Kappes is a best seller author with more than twenty books and four novellas.  In her works she creates inviting communities and characters.  Her other series are just as endearing:  Killer Coffee, Divorced Diva, Laurel London, Magical Cures, Olivia Davis, Spies and Spells, and the Kenni Lowry series.  This last series is set where the food is fried, the secrets are buried, and Kenni Lowry is Sheriff.  And you don’t have to wait long for the next in the Kenni Lowry series – Ax to Grind the third in this series is out September 19th this year.

If you’d like to hear more from the author herself, in her own words and in her own Southern accent, please listen to Kendall & Cooper Talk Mysteries with Tonya Kappes at this link - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJcXUd-oDa8

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Endangered Mystery Is Off Trail Suspense


By Pamela Beason
                Please bear with me as I set your course onto the mystery trail of the suspenseful Summer Westin Mystery series by Pamela Beason.  Each book takes place in an intriguing natural environment of the great outdoors.  In these mysteries the setting, a contrast of beauty and danger, adds such an exciting dimension to the stories.

                Summer Westin, known as Sam, is a wildlife biologist, and she also writes articles about the animals and wilderness.  She’s currently Endangered in the back country of Utah.  Passing through the Red Rock Campground, she pauses and meets up with some of her Ranger friends.  She also runs into some of the camping families and unwittingly plays a part in one of the children suddenly going missing.  An intense search ensues on the rugged mountain.  Sam is determined to save the child, and also the wild cougars she loves, when people who are incited by the growing media circus begin blaming the animals for endangering people.  Even the FBI get involved in the search, and the agents assigned are wonderfully down-to-earth characters to enjoy as well.  During the course of the novel there’s even a growing question about a romantic interest for our courageous and smart protagonist.

                The mystery of what’s happened to the child is so suspenseful, you’ll never know what’s around the next corner, or where the trail of clues will take you, not to mention when Sam takes you OT – that’s off trail.  The suspects are uncovered sometimes with deliberation, and some appear unexpectedly.  The action is so engaging you’ll forget you’re a reader and start assuming you’re out there with Sam trekking across the wilderness, with heart pounding determination to save the child and the cougars. 
                Pamela Beason is a retired private investigator who lives here in the Pacific Northwest.  She knows the outdoors first hand because when she's not hard at work on her next book, she explores the natural world on foot, in cross-country skis, in her kayak, or underwater scuba diving.  She writes mystery and romantic suspense books with strong women, quirky sidekicks, animals both domestic and wild, a dash of humor, and a big dose of suspense.  After reading her other Summer Westin Mystery books with Sam solving mysteries in the Galapagos, and nearby in the Cascades, try her Neema Mystery series.

And if you want to hear more from the author, tune into Kendall & Cooper Talk Mysteries with Pamela Beason

Sunday, October 15, 2017

A Walk on Chicago's Noir Side with Danny Gardner


A Negro and an OFAY
By Danny Gardner

                       This gritty Urban Noir book is a loosely fictional account about a real person, Lieutenant William Drury, a person “known for personal bravery” as was said after his death. The story takes place in the early 1950’s in Chicago and includes fresh description and detail on the underbelly of life in the city and surroundings. This author’s mastery of language in both text description and in dialogue is compelling and a real treat to read. The beleaguered protagonist faces systemic corruption and Syndicate confrontation. His fight is lined with persistence, street smarts, and a degree of fatalism. The struggle demands attention and unrelenting commitment, and the author artfully crafts the story in a way that infuses the reader with a tangible passion for the fight.

                Family and friendship are deep ties for Elliot Caprice, the Protagonist, in this book. I found these other characters also to be fascinating to read about in their dramatic relationships. I developed some real favorites among them, and I appreciate the strong men and women characters he creates in his writing. And just wait until you read the femme fatale. This author is a very successful and exhilarating genre bender who weaves unexpected elements into this Urban Noir.

                You may know Danny Gardner as a young stand-up comedian (Def Comedy Jam All-Stars vol. 12), and he also enjoys careers as actor, director and screenwriter. He has several published short pieces of non-fiction and Noir. He’s a frequent reader at Noir at the Bar events nationwide, including in Seattle at the Sorrento Hotel’s Fireside Room. He’s also a regular blogger at 7 Criminal Minds. This is his first novel, and such an impressive start to what hopefully will be a series. He is originally from Chicago and there’s no doubt his deep feeling for his hometown partly inspired the novel. In fact, his dedication of the book is “To Chicago, my love. May your south and west sides rise again.”

                Elliot Caprice is a cop on the run after charges that he killed two crooked colleagues. He returns to his hometown to find the family farm in foreclosure and the man who raised him dying in a flophouse. Desperate to raise the needed money, he starts working thanks to friends. He ends up crossing paths with a powerful family from Chicago’s north shore and a murder. Hired on the side, Elliot investigates with Chicago’s cops and the FBI breathing down his neck, the Mob watchful of his every step, and the wealthy and powerful pushing their own interests. Elliot Caprice is walking a tight wire.

And for more from the author tune into Kendall & Cooper Talk Mysteries with Danny Gardner

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Revenge In Paris by Valerie J Brooks


Revenge In Paris
By Valerie J. Brooks

New Year’s in Paris sounds like a dream, but in this contemporary noir novel it’s just the beginning of a swirling nightmare for a smart and impulsive protagonist. Angeline Porter is a criminal lawyer. She knows crime when she sees it, and she’s used to seeking justice in a court room.

When she finds her sister Sophie dead from suicide, she’s overwhelmed with emotion and determined to blame someone. She settles on a likely suspect, Sophie’s French lover, and makes plans to execute her own form of justice, which is fatal. She’s passionately intent on avenging her dear sister.

Follow Angeline to beautiful Paris. She’s incognito, of course. Witness first hand her intricate plotting; how will she murder him? Her devious interactions with her target, and will he catch on in time to save himself? And other questions that pop up as she sets her trap, including that ultimate question – is she capable of vigilante murder? And if so, what happens après le murder? Well, I can tell you that the final scenes in this story present a jarring predicament.

Revenge In Paris, or as I’ve come to think of it as RIP, is the first in a Noir Travel short story series and is free at all ebook stores. Voilà, the second is available the week of October 23rd, titled Portland Prey and a third is on the way. You’ll want to start at the beginning of this adventure though and follow through in sequence. What an incredible setting the author chose, and Valerie Brooks knows Paris very well. Her descriptions of the city and its varied sights are truly pictures in your mind and you get a sense for the places as if you’ve been there yourself. As an incredible bonus, at the end of the story she’s provided us with so much information about Paris, and links to many sites where you can learn even more.

Valerie is certainly a writer of 5-star Noir. Other beautiful writing by her has appeared in Scent of Cedars: Promising Writers of the Pacific Northwest, and also in France, A Love Story. She’s served on the board of directors for Oregon Writers Colony, and she co-founded the acclaimed Willamette Writers Speakers Series.

You’ll be glad you tagged along on this exciting trip to Paris at New Years in Revenge In Paris. The author treats you to a strong, intelligent, gutsy woman who writes her own rules and throws herself into a dangerous situation of her own creation. As has been said, “well-behaved women seldom make history” – or good novels.

And if you want to find out more from the author herself, here’s the link to Kendall & Cooper Talk Mysteries with Valerie Brooks - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0_VWnNCPL7M 

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Win A Kindle With Your Book Recommendation

Your Book Recommendation is your Raffle Ticket to win a Kindle

Friends of the Edmonds Library Presents:
And the recommendation goes to . . . . .
Write a book recommendation

Email book recommendations to edmondslibfriends@gmail.com OR hand in your written book recommendation at the Edmonds Library between October 1st and October 27th

Age Categories are:  13 and under / 14 – 21 / over 21
Kindles will be given to 3 lucky raffle winners who also earn free help to setup their device and learn about ebooks from Sno-Isle Libraries staff.

Kindle winners will be announced at the Friends Annual Book Sale at noon October 28th in the Frances Anderson Center

Winners’ recommendations will be published on My Edmonds News

All book recommendations will be displayed on Edmonds Library website and social media

Three recommenders of mystery books will be invited to read their recommendations on the Kendall & Cooper Talk Mysteries Podcast (YouTube, iTunes, Sound Cloud and KBFG radio)

Thank you sponsors:  Friends of the Edmonds Library, Symetra, and Marsh and McLennan Companies