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Heart of a Killer by David Rosenfelt (2012)

Jamie Wagner is an underachieving lawyer without much ambition until he takes on the pro bono case of a lifetime. As he meets the plaintiff he is drawn to her and thus to her problem, which is a pip. She is in prison for killing her husband in cold blood, her daughter will die without a heart transplant, and she wishes to donate her heart to her daughter by committing suicide.

The plus side of this book is the interweaving of an old story that completely changes the facts as we know them. Wry humor and real human beings give this read a special voice. Enjoyed it immensely.

Read David's Rosenfelt's Heart of a Killer today!

Spotlight: Jackson Brodie mysteries

The four mysteries in Kate Atkinson’s Jackson Brodie series are complex stories involving lost innocence, missing children, and loyal dogs. Brodie used to be a Cambridge, England, police detective. He used to be a private investigator. Now he is a man with failed relationships and a knack for getting involved in helping anyone in distress.

In the first volume, Case Histories (2004), Brodie helps two sisters find what happened to their baby sister, missing for several decades, a father find the man who murdered his
daughter, and a young woman find the mother who went to prison year's before. See
the Masterpiece Mystery dramatization, Case Histories (2011)

The rest of the series includes One Good Turn (2006), When Will There Be Good News (2008), and Started Early, Took My Dog (2011).

1222 by Anne Holt (2011)

Another Scandinavian mystery from Norway gains popularity in the U. S. and with good reason. A train wreck high, high in the mountains of Norway leaves over 300 people stranded. Fortunately, they gain shelter at a decent hotel that is about to be tested against the most intense blizzard in recent history. A perfect setting for murder(s)

In this icy setting we meet the enigmatic Hanne Wilhelmsen, a former homicide officer, now permanently bound to a wheelchair, which is another story. Hanne encamps in the lounge and from that point acutely observes the large cast of characters, soon suspects in murder quite cold.

The unique element of this story is the ever frightening storm that puts everyone under pressure. Reluctantly Hanne is pulled into the maelstrom. A real whodunit!

Check the catalog for 1222 and for other books by Anne Holt.

The Garden Intrigue by Lauren Willig (2012)

Augustus Whittlesby writes dreadful (yet entertaining) poetry – and has done so for more than a decade to aid the British cause. As a spy stationed in Napoleon’s France, Whittlesby’s ridiculous ramblings provide an excellent cover. Widowed American Emma Delagardie, friend to Napoleon’s stepdaughter and cousin to the American envoy, finds herself ensconced in the Paris social scene. The pair is thrown together when the newly crowned emperor requests a masque at his manor home, Malmaison.

Between uncovering a plot to invade England, exchanging delightful letters, and discovering a mysterious weapon, Augustus and Emma embark on the adventure of a lifetime. The Garden Intrigue is a must for fans of historical fiction, plus those who enjoy mystery and romance.

Although it’s the ninth installment of the Pink Carnation series, you can jump in with this delightful concoction. If you want to start at the beginning, check out The Secret History of the Pink Carnation (and check out my review of that title here).

Join us during National Library Week on Wednesday, April 11 at 7:00pm for an appearance by Lauren Willig. She’ll talk about the Pink Carnation series, answer your questions, and sign books. Anderson’s of Downers Grove will be present to sell books. Reserve your spot today at calendar.ippl.info!

For more more books by Lauren Willing check out our catalog.
 
 

Spotlight: Spotlight: Turn of the Century Vienna: Freud, Pastry, and Murder

Spotlight: Turn of the Century Vienna: Freud, Pastry, and Murder
Two current mystery series use 1900 era Vienna as their setting. Frank Tallis’s Liebermann Papers series follows psychiatrist Max Liebermann as he assists his friend Detective Oscar Rheinhardt as he investigates murder. These murders usually involve serial killers and require Liebermann’s insight into pathological behavior. Occasionally a visit to Liebermann’s mentor, Dr. Freud, is required. Somehow indulging in a great many nicely described pastries is required to solve any crime. The first volume in the series is A Death in Vienna.
J. Sydney Jones's Viennese Mysteries feature lawyer Karl Werthen who investigates alongside real-life criminologist Hanns Gross. These cases involve historical persons such as artist Gustav Klimt and composer Gustav Mahler. Again, meals are lovingly described; this time tending more towards sauerkraut and sausages (although, I am happy to say, pastries do regularly make an appearance). The first volume in the series is The Empty Mirror.

The Blood Royal by Barbara Cleverly

The Blood Royal by Barbara Cleverly (2011)
In this post-WWI period story, Irish rebels have murdered two prominent politicians in London. Scotland Yard worries that the Royal Family is the next target. Inspector Joe Sandilands recruits Lily Wentworth, a London policewoman, to work under cover protecting the Prince of Wales. What unravels is a group of Russian aristocrats laying a trail of red herrings for Scotland Yard.

The Bone Garden by Tess Gerritsen

The Bone Garden by Tess Gerritsen (2007)
Kept me quiet and intrigued for a day and a half. I couldn’t put it down! So many characters intertwined to complete the multi-generational saga.

For more medical thrillers view our staff picks here.

Agatha Raisin and the Haunted House by M.C. Beaton

Agatha Raisin and the Haunted House by M.C. Beaton (2003)
Fast reading! Intrigue! Good diversion from blood and guts murder mystery. Twists and turns on English roads through towns with historic names leads to conclusion of a murder or 3.

To get a complete list of books in the Agatha Raisin series visit M.C. Beaton's website.

I Still Dream About You by Fannie Flagg

I Still Dream About You by Fannie Flagg (2010)
A charming and heartwarming  book. I laughed and I cried.  It was well worth the wait.

Check out the author's website for more about the book.

If you like Fannie Flagg's books take a look at our list of  funny mysteries to discover your next favorite read.

The Saturday Big Tent Wedding Party by Alexander McCall-Smith

The Saturday Big Tent Wedding Party by Alexander McCall-Smith (2011)
Another fun, endearing book from McCall-Smith’s “No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency” series. This one has less detective stories and is slower paced, though it picks up in the middle. It’s an enchanting read.

If you enjoy “No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency” series you might like other books on our list Mysteries: Dateline Africa.

Here is the trailer for the television series based on the book.

Spotlight: The Spellmans by Lisa Lutz

Spotlight: The Spellmans by Lisa Lutz
Lisa Lutz
created a delightfully zany family in the Spellmans. Follow their hilarious antics in the quartet: The Spellman Files, Curse of the Spellmans, Revenge of the Spellmans, and The Spellmans Strike Again.

Although the Spellmans own a PI firm, the dysfunctional family spends more time spying on each other. Narrator Isabel “Izzy” Spellman is the 20-something middle daughter who never starts a story at the beginning. Following her train of thought is half the fun. The supporting cast, from the other Spellmans to the octogenarian lawyer and 40ish police detective, contributes to the entertaining atmosphere.

While the final book seemed to wrap up the series, it appears the Spellmans will be making another appearance in 2012.

If you like Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series, try The Spellman Files. And for other books like these, check out our booklist.

The Ice Princess by Camilla Lackberg

The Ice Princess by Camilla Lackberg (2009)Another Swedish author (Steig Larrson was the first.) makes her mark in the murder industry. For once, I agree with the endorsements on the book jacket: "Chilly, deceptive and lucid, just like the icy environment it describes." --The Literary Review.

The plotting, the intertwine of characters, the environment and even the ending satisfy the reader. All things work together as the story gathers momentum. Lackberg develops her characters deftly, just enough to be realistically appealing or appalling as the case may be. This is my starred mystery for summer.

Keep up to date with the latest news about the author on her blog.

Blowback by Peter May

Blowback by Peter May (2011)
Blowback is the fifth book in the Enzo Files series. May continues Enzo’s quest to solve seven cold case murders. To really appreciate this book, you need to begin with Extraordinary People, the first book in the series. That being said, May produces another absorbing mystery.

This book takes us to the world of the three star Michelin restaurants in France where we begin to realize the dark side of the culinary arts. If you like food and France and an interesting older man with plenty of appeal, you will enjoy this book. Another point of interest is the ongoing story of Enzo's personal growth in his relations with family, friends and, being Enzo, his lovers.

Check out the authors favorite recipes.

Killing Floor by Lee Child

Killing Floor by Lee Child (1997)
A number of people have recommended this author to me, knowing that I enjoy reading mysteries and suspense novels. So, I read this book, the first in the series featuring Jack Reacher, an ex-military policeman who is now a drifter.

Reacher is a really intriguing character and the details provided in this book about currency and counterfeiting were also fascinating. I definitely plan to continue reading the other books in this series.

Find out more about the Reacher series at the authors website.

Night Fall by Nelson Demille

Night Fall by Nelson Demille (2004)
Although this is a novel, it‘s based on the true event of the crash of TWA Flight 800 in 1996 off of Long Island, NY, killing all 230 people aboard. It contains many interesting facts and theories surrounding that tragedy. It asks the question: What REALLY caused this plane to explode that evening? Demille creates an intriguing plot and fascinating set of characters, while trying to determine whether the plane was shot down by a missile or exploded due to a mechanical failure in a fuel tank, as the government concluded. Despite the tragic subject, Demille’s character, John Corey, once again adds his biting humor and sarcasm to make this a truly enjoyable, "hard to put down" book to read. If you enjoy suspense with a touch of humor, you’ll love this one.

Visit the author's website and read a review.