REVIEW: Full Disclosure by Beverley McLachlin (Jilly Truitt #1)

Series: Jilly Truitt

Book Number: 1

Read this book for: Canadian mystery, legal thriller, legal procedural, realism, legal investigation, defense lawyer point of view, strong female lead

Quick Review: An excellently satisfying legal procedural with a solid mystery and the weight of reality lent to it by its author — the former Chief Justice of Canada.

***

There’s nothing Jilly Truitt likes more than winning a case, especially against her former mentor, prosecutor Cy Kenge. Jilly has baggage, the residue of a dark time in a series of foster homes, but that’s in the past. Now she’s building her own criminal defense firm and making a name for herself as a tough-as-nails lawyer willing to take risks in the courtroom.

When the affluent and enigmatic Vincent Trussardi is accused of his wife Laura’s murder, Jilly agrees to defend him, despite predictions that the case is a sure loser and warnings from those close to her to stay away from the Trussardi family. Determined to prove everyone wrong, Jilly investigates Laura’s death, hoping to discover a shred of evidence that might give the jury a reasonable doubt. Instead, she is confronted by damning evidence and uncooperative witnesses at every turn. Someone isn’t telling the truth, but who?

With her reputation and Vincent’s life on the line, Jilly tries to unravel the web of secrets surrounding Laura’s murder. As she digs deeper, she uncovers a startling revelation that will change not only the case, but her life forever.

Continue reading REVIEW: Full Disclosure by Beverley McLachlin (Jilly Truitt #1)

REVIEW: Hope Never Dies by Andrew Shaffer (Obama/Biden #1)

Series: Obama/Biden

Book Number: 1

Read this book for: satire, political satire, humour, noir, buddy detectives, amateur detectives

Quick Review: Ridiculous, over the top fun that reads as a tongue-in-cheek love letter to Obama and Biden, this novel actually has relatively good noir mystery chops.

***

Vice President Joe Biden is fresh out of the Obama White House and feeling adrift when his favorite railroad conductor dies in a suspicious accident, leaving behind an ailing wife and a trail of clues. To unravel the mystery, “Amtrak Joe” re-teams with the only man he’s ever fully trusted: the 44th president of the United States. Together they’ll plumb the darkest corners of Delaware, traveling from cheap motels to biker bars and beyond, as they uncover the sinister forces advancing America’s opioid epidemic. Continue reading REVIEW: Hope Never Dies by Andrew Shaffer (Obama/Biden #1)

REVIEW: Sherlock Holmes: The Devil’s Dust by James Lovegrove (Lovegrove Holmes #5)

Series: Sherlock Holmes by James Lovegrove

Book Number: 5

Read this book for: Sherlock Holmes, Victorian mystery, literature crossover, globe-trotting story

Quick Review: A fun Holmes adventure that feels a lot like Arthur Conan Doyle’s originals, with lots of twists and turns and featuring another ‘fictional’ character.

***

It is 1884, and when a fellow landlady finds her lodger poisoned, Mrs Hudson turns to Sherlock Holmes. The police suspect the landlady of murder, but Mrs Hudson insists that her friend is innocent. Upon investigating, the companions discover that the lodger, a civil servant recently returned from India, was living in almost complete seclusion, and that his last act was to scrawl a mysterious message on a scrap of paper. The riddles pile up as aged big game hunter Allan Quatermain is spotted at the scene of the crime when Holmes and Watson investigate. The famous man of mind and the legendary man of action will make an unlikely team in a case of corruption, revenge, and what can only be described as magic… Continue reading REVIEW: Sherlock Holmes: The Devil’s Dust by James Lovegrove (Lovegrove Holmes #5)

REVIEW: A Baby’s Bones by Rebecca Alexander

Series: N/A

Book Number: N/A

Read this book for: historical mystery, contemporary mystery, British history, archaeological mysteries, hints of the supernatural

Quick Review: An engrossing read that perfectly blends the historical and contemporary for a brilliant story.

***

Archaeologist Sage Westfield has been called in to excavate a sixteenth-century well, and expects to find little more than soil and the odd piece of pottery. But the disturbing discovery of the bones of a woman and newborn baby make it clear that she has stumbled onto an historical crime scene, one that is interwoven with an unsettling local legend of witchcraft and unrequited love. Yet there is more to the case than a four-hundred-year-old mystery. The owners of a nearby cottage are convinced that it is haunted, and the local vicar is being plagued with abusive phone calls. Then a tragic death makes it all too clear that a modern murderer is at work…

Continue reading REVIEW: A Baby’s Bones by Rebecca Alexander

REVIEW: The Fire Pit by Chris Ould (Jan Reyna (Faroes Novels) #3)

Series: Jan Reyna (Faroes Novels)

Book Number: 3

Read this book for: Nordic noir, British mystery, international mysteries, now it’s personal, dark pasts, detective backstories, multiple investigations

Quick Review: A perfect end to a brilliant trilogy, and another Nordic noir must-read.

***

In the wake of a dying man’s apparent suicide, the skeleton of a young woman is discovered on a windswept hillside. Detective Hjalti Hentze suspects that it is the body of a Norwegian woman reported missing forty years earlier, while a commune occupied the land, and whose death may be linked to the abduction and rape of a local Faroese girl.

Meanwhile British DI Jan Reyna is pursuing his investigation into his mother’s suicide. But as he learns more about her final days, links between the two cases start to appear: a conspiracy of murder and abuse spanning four decades. And as Hentze puts the same pieces together, he realizes that Reyna is willing to go further than ever before to learn the truth…

Continue reading REVIEW: The Fire Pit by Chris Ould (Jan Reyna (Faroes Novels) #3)

REVIEW: These Violent Delights by Victoria Namkung

Series: N/A

Book Number: N/A

Read this book for: non-murder investigation, journalist investigators, women banding together, US investigation, LA mystery, bringing known perpetrator to justice

Quick Review: A very readable novel about justice finally coming to a sexual predator — timely and relevant.

***

At Windemere School for Girls, one of America’s elite private schools, Dr. Gregory Copeland is the beloved chair of the English Department. A married father with a penchant for romantic poetry—and impressionable teenage girls—he operates in plain sight for years, until one of his former students goes public with allegations of inappropriate conduct. With the help of an investigative journalist, and two additional Windemere alumnae who had relationships with Copeland as students, the unlikely quartet unites to take him down.

Continue reading REVIEW: These Violent Delights by Victoria Namkung

REVIEW: Skyjack by KJ Howe (Thea Paris #2)

Series: Thea Paris

Book Number: 2

Read this book for: action thriller, kidnap/hostage negotiations, spy thriller, secret organizations, fast pace

Quick Review: A page-turner that moves at breakneck speed with all the visuals of an action thriller movie, this a perfect light vacation read.

***

International kidnap expert Thea Paris is escorting two former child soldiers on a plane from an orphanage in Kanzi, Africa, to adoptive parents in London when the Boeing Business Jet is hijacked. As the plane screams toward an unknown destination somewhere in the remote Libyan desert, Thea has to figure out a way to take back control on the jet without endangering the lives of the passengers aboard–especially the two young boys in her care.

Behind the skyjacking is a former nemesis, a sophisticated Sicilian mobster who wants something, or someone, on that plane–possibly even Thea herself. When the dust settles on a tense negotiation, Thea finds herself at the beck and call of a ruthless criminal who will stop at nothing to crush his rivals, even if it means forcing her to break international law. Thea, Rif, and the rest of the Quantum team soon find themselves doing the mafioso’s bidding while racing against the clock to discover his true motives.

Revealing a deadly conspiracy that connects the dark postwar legacy of World War II to the present, this case will bring all parties to an explosive conclusion that will decide the fate of millions across Europe and the Middle East.

Continue reading REVIEW: Skyjack by KJ Howe (Thea Paris #2)

a mystery lover's exploration of the best reads in the crime genre.

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