Posts Tagged ‘Scene of the Crime’

John Burdett’s Detective Sonchai Jitpleecheep made his first appearance in the 2003 novel, Bangkok 8. Since that time there have been three more novels featuring the Thai detective, with the most recent, The Godfather of Kathmandu, out this past spring. Many reviewers have noted that in this critically acclaimed series Western materialism confronts the spiritual approach of the East.

A reviewer for People magazine declared of Bangkok 8: “Like Thai cuisine, Burdett’s comic thriller blends spicy, sour, salty, and sweet – and makes for a delicious wake-up for jaded palates.” Carl Hiasson also had positive words about that series premier, declaring: “One of the most startling and provocative mysteries I’ve read in years. The characters are marvellously unique, the setting intoxicating, and the plot unwinds in dark illusory strands.” (more…)

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Steve Berry is the best-selling author of the Cotton Malone series, a blend of history and suspense that have catapulted Berry to the top of the thriller game. With over 11 million books in print translated into 37 languages and sold in 50 countries, Berry has come a long way from the 85 rejections he garnered trying to break into writing. With Malone, a former U.S. Justice Department agent turned rare-book dealer, Berry has found the winning combination, and his protagonist has made six appearances thus far, starting with The Templar Legacy in 2006, and continuing with The Alexandria Link, The Venetian Betrayal, The Charlemagne Pursuit, The Paris Vendetta, and The Emperor’s Tomb, just out. (more…)

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Sam Millar is one of those authors whose experiences in his private life rival those of his fictional protagonists. An IRA volunteer imprisoned in Long Kesh for his political beliefs and actions, he was the mastermind behind the 1993 Brinks robbery in New York, one of the biggest heists is U.S. history. He served more hard time, this time in the American penal system, but was ultimately pardoned by President Bill Clinton. Upon his return to Northern Ireland, he turned from the sword to the pen.

Winner of the Aisling Award for Art and Culture among other prizes, Millar is the author of a memoir, On the Brinks, as well as a number of edgy novels, among them two noir thrillers featuring PI Karl Kane. In the series debut, Bloodstorm, Kane delves into the murders of a group of Belfast men who, over twenty years before, were involved in a gang-rape death. Publishers Weekly dubbed this the “powerful first of a new crime series,” while Booklist termed it “a real find for aficionados of the classic hard-boiled novel.” Kane returns in the 2010 series addition, The Dark Place, a novel dealing with “hard-edged crime with a vengeance,” according to Booklist. Similarly, Publishers Weekly noted of this second series installment: “Millar distinguishes himself from many of his contemporaries in the genre with taut writing and a memorable lead character.” (more…)

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Will Thomas is the author of the popular historical fiction series featuring detective Cyrus Barker and his apprentice, Thomas Llewelyn, set in London and parts of the British Isles in the latter part of the nineteenth century. The series starts off with Some Danger Involved, and is continued with To Kingdom Come, The Limehouse Text, The Hellfire Conspiracy, and last year’s The Black Hand. The books deal with vital topics of the day, from anti-Semitism to anarchism.

The books have received critical praise. Of Kingdom Come, Booklist noted, “Thomas places his cast of likeable even heroic characters within a complex political minefield and the waits for the explosion. Intense and insightful.” The Denver Post declared the same novel a “thorough delight.” Library Journal noted of The Hellfire Conspiracy: “Thomas knows his Victorian London and his way around the makings of a great mystery. Fans of Victorian historicals will snap this up.” The New York Times Book Review said of the Barker and Llewelyn books, ‘Will Thomas explores wonderful uncharted territory…true believers who go along for the ride will hate to see it end.” (more…)

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Paul Adam is the author of eleven can’t-put-them-down thrillers for adults (in addition to three earlier crime novels, featuring investigative journalist Mike McLean) that cover topics from people smuggling, to genetically modified crops, cigarette smuggling in the European Union, Chinese oppression in Tibet, corruption within the Vatican, and the 21st Century surveillance society in which we live. In Unholy Trinity, Adams looks at connections between the Catholic Church and Italian neo-Fascist groups in a tale that London’s Literary Review thought would have appealed to Eric Ambler. Of his Flash Point, novelist Nelson DeMille blurbed, “Wonderfully plotted, fast-paced and refreshingly original.” (more…)

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Kirkus Reviews praised her “intelligent, sensuous writing.” The Washington Post said she “adroitly tosses in period detail as well as romance, political intrigue and brutal battle scenes.” Booklist declared that “the nineteenth-century Ottoman Empire, in the throes of political upheaval, … provides the vividly realized background” of her novels. Welcome to the world of Jenny White and her Turkish protagonist, Kamil Pasha.

White, a social anthropologist at Boston University, and author of several award-winning academic titles, also moonlights as the well respected author of three books featuring Kamil, an aristocrat and modernist who is a magistrate in the new secular courts. The adventures begin with The Sultan’s Seal in 2006, which Booklist gave a starred review, noting: “Court life and customs in old Istanbul are thrillingly captured here, with readers easily transported back to those days when mystery and intrigue lurked around every corner.” Shortlisted for the 2006 Ellis Peters Historical Crime Award, this debut was also named one of the top ten first novels of 2006 and one of the top ten historical novels of 2006 by Booklist. (more…)

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Author Lisa Black makes no bones about it. On her home page she declares that she “spent the happiest five years of my life in a morgue.” Fed up with a secretarial career, she re-tooled at Cleveland State University and got a job as a forensic scientist at the Cuyahoga County Coroner’s Office, where she analyzed gunshot residue on hands and clothing, hairs, fibers, paint, glass, DNA, blood and many other forms of trace evidence, as well as crime scenes. (more…)

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