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US Books Received- 10/2010  Next Month / Last Month
In order to provide timely reviews, we prefer to receive Advance Reader Copies of books when possible. Send books to Gayle Surrette / Editor c/o Gumshoe 16440 Baden Westwood Road Brandywine, MD 20613

Avon

You Are Next by Katia Lief (Avon 01 October 2010 / $7.99) - Product Description: Former Detective Karin Schaeffer has nothing left to live for after serial killer Martin Price destroys all she holds dear. Known as "The Domino Killer" because he leaves dominoes as a clue to his next victim, Price doesn't stop until an entire family is destroyed. Even when he's locked away in prison, the shadow he casts over Karin's life keeps her in constant darkness.

Then a policeman brings news to her door: Price has escaped. Karin knows where he's headed because of the message he left behind last time, scrawled in blood, on her bathroom mirror-- You are next.

But Karin Schaeffer refuses to run and hide. She feels no fear and has nothing left to lose. And so she waits. She won't stand by and let Price harm any more of her family. And she won't rest until she's put him back behind bars forever . . . or until one of them is dead.

(Source: Avon)

Berkley

A Marked Man (An Abigail Adams Mystery) by Barbara Hamilton (Berkley 05 October 2010 / $14.00) - Product Description:
While John works to clear his client's name, Abigail begins her own investigation, and soon learns several unpleasant facts about the dead man, things that greatly increase the number of possible suspects. But as she pursues the truth, the killer pursues her- threatening not only Abigail but her vulnerable family. (see review)

A Truth For a Truth (Ministry is Murder) by Emilie Richards (Berkley 05 October 2010 / $7.99) - Product Description: After a former minister dies suddenly upon his return to Emerald Springs, his memorial service is cut just as short. Aggie Sloan-Wilcox, wide of the current minister, knows why. The poor old guy was murdered. But who in this bucolic village could be capable of such a crime? (see review)

Blackwork (Needlecraft Mystery) by Monica Ferris (Berkley 05 October 2010 / $7.99) - Product Description: This Halloween, Betsy Devonshire, owner of the Crewel World needlework shop and part-time sleuth, is haunted by murder. After one too many pints, a local blames bar owner and Wicca practitioner Leona Cunningham for a series of "accidents" that have happened throughout town. When he ends up dead without a mark on his body, Leona's the main suspect. But Betsy being on the case spells trouble for the killer.

Read our review of Blackwork from our October 2009 issue. (Source: Berkley)

Fiber & Brimstone (A Scrapbooking Mystery) by Laura Childs (Berkley 05 October 2010 / $24.95) - Product Description: It's Halloween in New Orleans-and the festivities are going to be killer.

With the help of her best friend Ava, Carmela Bertrand is building a giant monster puppet for the Halloween Monsters & Mayhem parade. Things get terrifying earlier than expected when they overhear an argument between Jekyl Hardy and Brett Fowler- and just minutes later they find Fowler's dead body.

Carmela has known Jekyl for years and can't believe he'd ever resort to murder, despite the fact that Fowler owed him money. But when another victim is discovered-who also had an unfriendly relationship with Jekyl-Carmela is convinced someone is framing her friend and now must find a way to unmask the real killer. (Source: Berkley)

Fundraising the Dead (A Museum Mystery) by Sheila Connolly (Berkley 05 October 2010 / $6.99) - Product Description: At The Society for the Preservation of Pennsylvania Antiques, fundraiser Eleanor "Nell" Pratt solicits donations-and sometimes solves crimes. When a collection of George Washington's letters is lost on the same day that an archivist is found dead, it seems strange that the Society president isn't pushing for an investigation. Nell goes digging herself, and soon uncovers a long, rich history of crime. (Source: Berkley)

Pinned for Murder (Southern Sewing Series) by Elizabeth Lynn Casey (Berkley 05 October 2010 / $6.99) - Product Description: The members of South Carolina's Sweet Briar Ladies Society sewing circle are as loyal and close-knit as the day is long. But when the richest and meanest woman in town turns up murdered, the new Yankee librarian Tori Sinclair finds that some threads can bind dangerously tight. (Source: Berkley)

Shroud of Dishonour (A Templar Night Mystery) by Maureen Ash (Berkley 05 October 2010 / $14.00) - Product Description: Templar Bascot de Marins is preparing to rejoin the Holy Wars when he is called upon to investigate a gruesome murder in the Order's own chapel...

The shocking discovery of a strangled prostitute in the Templar chapel throws the Order into disarray. Alongside the corpse is a purse containing thirty pence-the same amount of silver Judas received for betraying Christ.

Is the murder revenge for a Templar brother's betrayal? Has one of their own broken his vow of chastity? The Order's preceptor turns to Bascot to determine whether an outsider is seeking to dishonour the Templars or a murderer walks among their ranks. (see review)

Tragic Magic (A Scrapbooking Mystery) by Laura Childs (Berkley 05 October 2010 / $7.99) - Product Description: A New Orleans mansion is being converted into a haunted house for tourists and scrapbook shop owner Carmela Bertrand has been enlisted to help. No sooner does the project begin than someone winds up dead.

Read our review of Tragic Magic from our October 2009 issue. (Source: Berkley)

Bloomsbury USA Children's Books

Girl's Best Friend (A Maggie Brooklyn Mystery) by Leslie Margolis (Bloomsbury USA Children's Books 12 October 2010 / $14.99) - Product Description: Dogs are disappearing in her neighborhood, and Maggie Brooklyn Sinclair knows all about it. After all, she has a semi-secret after-school gig as a professional (ok, amateur) dog-walker. Maggie hates to see a pup in trouble, so she's even willing to help her ex-best friend Ivy recover her rescue-dog, Kermit. Kermit's being held for ransom, and Maggie has noticed some suspicious behavior lately. But she never suspected her crush Milo could be involved . . .

Leslie Margolis's pitch-perfect voice and rich characters have endeared her to tweens, and her fans will flock to this hip new series featuring a clever and lovable new heroine, Maggie Brooklyn. (Source: Bloomsbury USA Children's Books)

Enigma Books

The DeValera Deception by Michael McMenamin and Patrick McMenamin (Enigma Books 01 October 2010 / $23.95) - Product Description: In the summer of 1929 Weimar Germany still has a secret military agreement with the USSR to develop new weapons beyond the Ural Mountains. Ultimately, both want to dismember the newly revived independent Poland, but to distract Britain from helping the Poles, the new Irish Free State is placed at risk by conspirators and arms dealers intent on fomenting an IRA coup d'état.

Winston Churchill is about to travel to North America when the new Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald asks him to handle a secret assignment. The IRA intends to buy large quantities of arms in the United States and an SIS team will investigate. Churchill is to enlist American President Herbert Hoover to prevent the weapons from reaching Ireland. But Churchill has his own unofficial team gather evidence as well.

Bourke Cockran Jr., a law professor and former military intelligence agent, is the son of Churchill's old Irish American mentor. Mattie McGary, Churchill's goddaughter, works for William Randolph Hearst. Attracted to each other, their tempers often clash as Cockran and Mattie follow a trail from New York to Los Angeles through Canada to discover who is funding the IRA and where the arms are assembled.

But Mattie is also keeping secrets from Cockran, who has an agenda of revenge: to kill the leader of the IRA team who is responsible for the murder of his wife in the Irish Civil War. These plans interfere with foiling the arms shipment and an IRA plot to assassinate Churchill. And time is running out . . .

(see review)

Forge Books

Rogue Island by Bruce DeSilva (Forge Books 12 October 2010 / $24.99) - Product Description: Liam Mulligan is as old school as a newspaper man gets. His beat is Providence, Rhode Island, and he knows every street and alley. He knows the priests and prostitutes, the cops and street thugs. He knows the mobsters and politicians--who are pretty much one and the same. Someone is systematically burning down the neighborhood Mulligan grew up in, people he knows and loves are perishing in the flames, and the public is on the verge of panic. With the police looking for answers in all the wrong places, and with the whole city of Providence on his back, Mulligan must find the hand that strikes the match. (see review)

Harper

Death Message by Mark Billingham (Harper 01 October 2010 / $7.99) - Product Description:

Winner of the UK's 2009 Theakston's Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year Award

It's carried by police officers to your door—the last words anyone ever wants to hear: The Death Message.

Detective Investigator Tom Thorne is receiving messages of his own: photographs of murder victims sent to his cell phone. Thorne doesn't know who's sending the grisly pictures, who the victims are, or why he has been chosen—but he knows a dead man when he sees one. Ensnared in an investigation that threatens to confound his judgment and destroy his career, he must track down a fiendishly elusive killer before time runs out. Because the slayings are somehow connected to the most terrifying psychopath he has ever encountered—and the blood trail is about to cross into Thorne's personal life.

(Source: Harper)

Pirate Latitudes by Michael Crichton (Harper 01 October 2010 / $9.99) - Product Description: The Caribbean, 1665. A remote colony of the English Crown, the island of Jamaica holds out against the vast supremacy of the Spanish empire. Port Royal, its capital, is a cutthroat town of taverns, grog shops, and bawdy houses. In this steamy climate there's a living to be made, a living that can end swiftly by disease—or by dagger. For Captain Charles Hunter, gold in Spanish hands is gold for the taking, and the law of the land rests with those ruthless enough to make it. (Source: Harper)

Knopf

The Killer of Little Shepherds: A True Crime Story and the Birth of Forensic Science by Douglas Starr (Knopf 05 October 2010 / $26.95) - Product Description: A riveting true crime story that vividly recounts the birth of modern forensics.

At the end of the nineteenth century, serial murderer Joseph Vacher, known and feared as "The Killer of Little Shepherds," terrorized the French countryside. He eluded authorities for years—until he ran up against prosecutor Emile Fourquet and Dr. Alexandre Lacassagne, the era's most renowned criminologist. The two men—intelligent and bold—typified the Belle Époque, a period of immense scientific achievement and fascination with science's promise to reveal the secrets of the human condition.

With high drama and stunning detail, Douglas Starr revisits Vacher's infamous crime wave, interweaving the story of how Lacassagne and his colleagues were developing forensic science as we know it. We see one of the earliest uses of criminal profiling, as Fourquet painstakingly collects eyewitness accounts and constructs a map of Vacher's crimes. We follow the tense and exciting events leading to the murderer's arrest. And we witness the twists and turns of the trial, celebrated in its day. In an attempt to disprove Vacher's defense by reason of insanity, Fourquet recruits Lacassagne, who in the previous decades had revolutionized criminal science by refining the use of blood-spatter evidence, systematizing the autopsy, and doing groundbreaking research in psychology. Lacassagne's efforts lead to a gripping courtroom denouement.

The Killer of Little Shepherds
is an important contribution to the history of criminal justice, impressively researched and thrillingly told. (Source: Knopf)

Minotaur Books

Busy Body (Agatha Raisin) by M.C. Beaton (Minotaur Books 12 October 2010 / $24.99) - Product Description: Agatha Raisin has always been ambivalent about holiday cheer, but her cozy little village of Carsely has long prided itself on its Christmas festivities. But this year Mr. John Sunday, a selfimportant officer with the Health and Safety Board, has ruled that the traditional tree on top of the church is a public menace; that lampposts are unsafe for hanging illuminations; that May Dimwoody's homemade toys are dangerous for children… Things have reached such a desperate pass that the Carsely Ladies' Society joins forces with the ladies in the neighboring village of Odley Cruesis to try to put a stop to Mr. Sunday's meddling—only to find that someone has literally put a stop to him with a kitchen knife.

Agatha's detective agency is on the case, but when a man has made as many enemies as John Sunday, it's hard to know where to start... (Source: Minotaur Books)

Death Notice by Todd Ritter (Minotaur Books 12 October 2010 / $24.99) - Product Description: Perry Hollow, Pennsylvania, has never had a murder. At least not as long as Kat Campbell has been police chief. And the first is brutal. George Winnick, a farmer in his sixties, is found in a homemade coffin on the side of the highway with his lips sewn shut and his veins and arteries drained of blood and filled with embalming fluid. Chilling as that is, it becomes even more so when Kat finds that the Perry Hollow Gazette obituary writer, Henry Goll, received a death notice for Winnick before he was killed.

Soon after, the task force from the Pennsylvania Bureau of Investigation shows up and everything takes an irreversible turn for the worse. Nick Donnelly, head of the task force, has been chasing the "Betsy Ross Killer," so named because he's handy with a needle and thread, for more than a year. Winnick seems to be his fourth victim. Or is he?

Kat has never handled a murder case before, but she's not about to sit by while someone terrorizes her sleepy little town or her own son. But will her efforts be enough to stop a killer and bring calm to Perry Hollow. (see review)

Devoured (Hatton and Roumonde Mystery) by D.E. Meredith (Minotaur Books 26 October 2010 / $24.99) - Product Description: One of London's first forensic detectives chases a grisly killer in this stunning debut mystery rich in period detail and sinister intrigue.

London in 1856 is gripped by a frightening obsession. The specimen-collecting craze is growing, and discoveries in far-off jungles are reshaping the known world in terrible and unimaginable ways. The new theories of evolution threaten to disrupt the fragile balance of power that keeps the chaotic city in order—a disruption that many would do just about anything to prevent.

When the glamorous Lady Bessingham is found murdered in her bedroom, surrounded by her vast collection of fossils and tribal masks, Adolphus Hatton and his morgue assistant Albert Roumande are called in to examine the crime scene—and the body. In the new and suspicious world of forensics and autopsy examinations, Hatton and Roumande are the best. But the crime scene is not confined to one room. In their efforts to help Scotland Yard's infamous Inspector Adams track down the Lady's killer, Hatton and Roumande uncover a trail of murders all connected to a packet of seditious letters that, if published, would change the face of society and religion irrevocably.

Denise Meredith's measured prose and eye for exquisite detail moves seamlessly from the filthy docks on the Isle of Dogs to the jungles of Borneo and the drawing rooms of London's upper class. Her slow-burning mystery builds to a shocking conclusion, consuming victims—and Victorian London—as it goes.

(see review)

In Search of Mercy: A Mystery by Michael Ayoob (Minotaur Books 12 October 2010 / $24.99) - Product Description: Dexter Bolzjak is an ex–hockey goalie who was abducted and tortured by perverted sports fans eight years ago. Now he's muddling along in a Pittsburgh warehouse when he meets an old, terminally ill drunk named Lou Kashon. Lou wants to see his lost love, the actress Mercy Carnahan, and offers Dexter a fortune to find her. Dexter embarks on the search, retracing Mercy's past online and on foot. Soon, Mercy begins to haunt Dexter, appearing in his dreams while flashbacks to his own traumatic experience plague his waking hours. Dexter persists and follows Mercy's trail to New York, where he finds a voyeuristic film of the actress recorded shortly before her disappearance. Once Dexter connects that film to its source, he finds himself trapped in the ultimate nightmare. (see review)

Peril at Somner House: A Mystery Featuring Daphne du Maurier by Joanna Challis (Minotaur Books 26 October 2010 / $25.99) - Product Description: After her adventures in Murder on the Cliffs, young Daphne du Maurier travels to a remote island off the coast of Cornwall to visit the estate of Lord and Lady Trevalyan. Somner House, enchanting amidst lush exotic wilderness and only a moment's walk to the sea, beguiles Daphne, but just as looming winter storms begin to envelop the island, the Lord is found murdered while the Lady is found in the arms of a lover. Even Daphne with her torrid imagination could not have dreamed that she would become ensnared in the vile, villainous schemes being hatched within the walls of Somner House—or that a handsome stranger would inspire her to plumb the depths of a great mystery. (Source: Minotaur Books)

Swift Justice by Laura DiSilverio (Minotaur Books 12 October 2010 / $24.99) - Product Description: Charlotte "Charlie" Swift prefers working alone. That's why after eight years as an Air Force investigator she became a PI rather than a cop. She lives alone, she works alone, and aside for the occasional flirtation with sexy cop Connor Montgomery or her hunky neighbor Father Dan, she likes it that way. Then her silent partner flees the country, leaving his wife, Gigi, with nothing but the house, the Hummer, and a half interest in Swift Investigations. Charlie ends up with a heap of debt and Gigi, who has decided to be a not-so-silent partner. This change comes about while Charlie is trying to find the mother of a baby abandoned on a client's doorstep. While following leads, she sends Gigi out on crazy assignments, hoping that the pampered socialite will be driven to quit. However, when the baby's mother turns up dead, there's a murderer on the loose, and Charlie will need all the help she can get.

Swift Justice is a thoroughly enjoyable ride, and Charlie and Gigi make one hilarious odd couple. (see review)

The Demon's Parchment: A Medieval Noir (Crispin Guest) by Jeri Westerson (Minotaur Books 12 October 2010 / $25.99) - Product Description: In fourteenth century London, Crispin Guest is a disgraced knight convicted of treason and stripped of his land, title and his honor. He has become known as the "Tracker"--a man who can find anything, can solve any puzzle and, with the help of his apprentice, Jack Tucker, an orphaned street urchin with a thief's touch--will do so for a price. But this time, even Crispin is wary of taking on his most recent client. Jacob of Provencal is a Jewish physician at the King's court, even though all Jews were expelled from England nearly a century before. Jacob wants Crispin to find stolen parchments that might be behind the recent, ongoing, gruesome murders of young boys, parchments that someone might have used to bring forth a demon which now stalks the streets and alleys of London. (Source: Minotaur Books)

The Dove of Death: A Mystery of Ancient Ireland (Mysteries of Ancient Ireland) by Peter Tremayne (Minotaur Books 26 October 2010 / $25.99) - Product Description: In A.D. 670, an Irish merchant ship is attacked by a pirate vessel off the southern coast of the Breton peninsula. Merchad, the ship's captain, and Bressal, a prince from the Irish kingdom of Muman, are killed in cold blood after they have surrendered. Among the other passengers who manage to escape the slaughter are Fidelma of Cashel and her faithful companion, Brother Eadulf.

Once safely ashore, Fidelma—sister to the King of Muman and an advocate of the Brehon law courts—is determined to bring the killers to justice, not only because her training demands it but also because one of the victims was her cousin. The only clue to the killer's identity is the symbol of the dove on the attacking ship's sails, a clue that leads her on a dangerous quest to confront the man known as The Dove of Death. (Source: Minotaur Books)

The Killing Storm (Sarah Armstrong) by Kathryn Casey (Minotaur Books 26 October 2010 / $25.99) - Product Description: On a quiet afternoon in the park, four-year-old Joey plays in the sandbox, when a stranger approaches looking for his puppy. While Joey's mom, Crystal, talks on her cell phone, the stranger convinces the child to help search. By the time Crystal turns around, her son has disappeared. Yet her reaction is odd, not what one would expect from a distraught mother. Is Crystal somehow involved in her son's abduction?

Meanwhile, on a ranch outside Houston, Texas Ranger Sarah Armstrong assesses a symbol left on the hide of a slaughtered longhorn, a figure that dates back to a forgotten era of sugarcane plantations and slavery. Soon other prizewinning bulls are butchered on the outskirts of the city, each bearing a similar drawing. The investigations converge at the same time a catastrophic hurricane looms in the Gulf. Finally, as dangerous winds and torrential rains pummel the city, Sarah is forced to risk her life to save Joey. (Source: Minotaur Books)

The Shimmering Blond Sister (Berger and Mitry) by David Handler (Minotaur Books 12 October 2010 / $24.99) - Product Description: Police officer Desiree Mitry is under a huge amount of pressure to catch the Dorset Flasher, who has been terrorizing the wealthy dowagers of the Dorset Historic District every weekend. She becomes convinced that her man is Augie Donatelli. After the two have engaged in heated public quarrels, Augie turns up dead. Now Des will need Mitch Berger's help proving she wasn't the killer. (see review)

NAL

Murder, She Wrote: The Queen's Jewels by Jessica Fletcher & Donald Bain (NAL 05 October 2010 / $22.95) - Product Description: Jessica Fletcher has always wanted to take a transatlantic voyage on the legendary Queen Mary II. Now, she's finally getting her chance. She's hoping to fly to London, spend a few quiet days visiting, and then depart on the high seas.

When she calls her old friend, Scotland Yard Inspector George Sutherland, to let him know she's on her way, he mentions the case of an enormously valuable diamond that was stolen from its wealthy owner, who was murdered during the heist.

Jessica is well aware of the story. But when she finally boards her dream ship, the deadly mystery appears to have followed her up the gangplank. Now, in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, she must try to enjoy the sumptuous seaborne surroundings while she tries to find a priceless diamond-and the killer desperate enough to take a life for it. (Source: NAL)

The Chocolate Pirate Plot (Chocoholic Mystery) by JoAnna Carl (NAL 05 October 2010 / $21.95) - Product Description: Ever since Young Blackbeard became the biggest movie of the decade, everyone has caught pirate fever, including the residents of Warner Pier. TenHuis Chocolade is raking in the booty and selling out of chocolate treasure chests, pirate hats and ships.

When Lee McKinney Woodyard and her husband Joe take their boat out on Lake Michigan, they're stunned when a mischievous band of pirates hops on board. Lee's is the first boat boarded that summer, and the town couldn't be more amused by the mysterious buccaneers. But when a body washes up on shore, the pirates' antics stop being so entertaining.

Now Lee has to figure out the truth behind the Warner Pier Pirates, before someone else winds up walking the plank.... (see review)

Night Shadows Press

A Sporting Murder by Chester D. Campbell (Night Shadows Press October 2010 / $14.95) - From back of book: Goodwill to men isn't the Yuletide theme when Greg and Jill McKenzie are hired to investigate rumors that something shady is involved in a deal to bring an NBA basketball team to Nashville. Greg goes to meet an informant and finds the young man shot to death. What information did he have that would "blow your mind?" Their client is attorney for a group of Nashville Predators NHL hockey fans who don't think there's room for both pro hockey and pro basketball. Things turn deadlier when a bomb goes off beneath Greg's Jeep. Complicating matters, a disgruntled felon Greg helped send to prison during his Air Force career shows up with revenge in mind. The explosive situation reaches a climax on Christmas Day. (see review)

Oceanview Publishing

And Then There Was One by Patricia Gussin (Oceanview Publishing 04 October 2010 / $25.95) - Product Description: Nine years ago, Katie and Scott Monroe were blessed beyond their wildest dreams with identical triplets, Sammie, Alex, and Jackie. Three beautiful daughters and two adoring parents formed the picture-perfect party of five. But this tight-knit family unravels when the three little girls go to see a movie, but only one emerges from the darkness of the theatre. How could Sammie and Alex vanish without a trace?

Plunged into the abyss of a parent's worst fear, Katie and Scott hang by a thread-waiting, worrying, not knowing, and confronting the terrifying realization that the kidnapping may not have been a random act.

Who took Sammie and Alex? Why? Where are they? When will they be found? And what if they're never found, or not found alive? When Jackie, the remaining triplet, crumbles under the weight of grief and survivor's guilt, Katie and Scott struggle to hold out hope and hold on to what remains of their family.

Until-or unless-Sammie and Alex are found safe, this picture-perfect family can't be put back together again. (Source: Oceanview Publishing)

Pantheon

The Charming Quirks of Others: An Isabel Dalhousie Novel by Alexander Mccall Smith (Pantheon 12 October 2010 / $24.95) - Product Description: In this latest, felicitous addition to the Isabel Dalhousie series, our inquisitive heroine comes to see that there are very few of us who are not flawed...herself included.

A couple who are old friends of Isabel's ask for her help in a rather tricky situation: A successor is being sought for the headmaster position at their alma mater. The board has four final candidates but has received an anonymous letter alleging that one of them has a very serious skeleton in the closet. Could Isabel discreetly look into it? And so she does. What she discovers about all the candidates is surprising, but what she discovers in herself turns out to be equally revealing—and she finds that she has also unwittingly upset Jamie, the father of her young son.

Isabel's investigation will have her exploring issues of charity, forgiveness, and humility as she moves nearer and nearer to some of the most hidden precincts of the heart. (see review)

Picador

Box 21: A Novel by Anders Roslund (Picador 26 October 2010 / $15.00) - Product Description: Three years ago, Lydia and Alena were two hopeful girls from Lithuania. Now they are sex slaves, lured to Sweden with the promise of better jobs and then trapped in a Stockholm brothel. Suddenly they are given an unexpected chance at freedom and with it the opportunity to take revenge on their enslavers and reclaim the lives and dignity they once had. What will happen now that the tables are turned and the victims fight back? (Source: Picador)

Pocket

Blood Heat (Blood Lines) by Maria Lima (Pocket 26 October 2010 / $7.99) - Product Description: Texas is heating up. . . .The summer heat wave that's hit Rio Seco, Texas, has even the vampires complaining, but now that Keira—the Kelly Heir—is home from Vancouver, the weather isn't the only thing too hot to handle. Keira should be setting up her court and planning the big reception at which she and her consort, vampire ruler Adam Walker, will receive the magical leaders from the local area, but pomp and circumstance just aren't Keira's thing, especially not with trouble smoldering in her domain. A werewolf couple has mysteriously gone missing from a local pack, and when Keira is asked by their leader to investigate, she finds that some dissatisfied neighbors may have been taking, well, strong action against the wer community—action that could be repeated and could involve Keira and those she loves. With the reception looming and danger fast blazing out of control, the pressure is on Keira to keep Texas safe for supernaturals. Sometimes, it's just not that great to be Heir. . . . (see review)

Signet

Dirty Rotten Tendrils (Flower Shop) by Kate Collins (Signet 05 October 2010 / $6.99) - Product Description: When high-powered lawyer Ken "the Lip" Lipinski is found dead from a suspicious overdose, florist and amateur sleuth Abby Knight finds it hard to swallow that his opposing counsel-and her old boss-is the murderer. (Source: Signet)

Murder at the PTA (PTA Mysteries) by Laura Alden (Signet 05 October 2010 / $6.99) - Product Description: A brand-new series in which murder is anything but elementary.

After Tarver Elementary School's unpopular principal is murdered, PTA secretary and mother of two Beth Kennedy puts aside bake sales and class trip fund-raisers to catch a killer. And when members of the PTA become suspects, she realizes solving this murder will not be as easy as ABC... (Source: Signet)

Soho Constable

Cambridge Blue: A DC Gary Goodhew Mystery by Alison Bruce (Soho Constable 01 October 2010 / $15.00) - Product Description:

"Smart, ambitious. . . . A pleasingly different police procedural."—Kirkus Reviews

"This debut mystery by a British nonfiction crime writer accelerates like a train speeding to its destination. Highly recommended."—Library Journal

DC Gary Goodhew is intelligent and intuitive, the youngest detective at Cambridge's Parkside Station. When he discovers the body of a young woman on Midsummer Common, he is given the chance to work on a murder investigation for the first time in his career.

Soon the victim is identified as Lorna Spence. Richard Moran, her boyfriend and employer, has reported her missing and is distraught to discover that she has been killed. He claims that she was loved by his staff, and that she had no enemies. But it isn't long before Goodhew discovers many who wouldn't have minded seeing her dead, including Spence's high maintenance colleague, Victoria ,and Goodhew's reckless former classmate, Bryn.

They both swear that they have nothing to do with Lorna's death, but someone is lying. After another brutal murder, Goodhew knows it is time to use his own initiative to flush out the killer, even though it means risking his job and discovering the truth about the one person he hopes will be innocent.

(see review)

The Siren: A DC Gary Goodhew Mystery by Alison Bruce (Soho Constable 01 October 2010 / $25.00) - Product Description: All it takes is one small item on the regional news for Kimberly Guyver and Rachel Golinski to know that their checkered past is catching up with them. Within hours, Rachel's home is burning and Kimberly's young son Riley is missing.

When DC Gary Goodhew begins to sift through their lives, he uncovers an unsettling picture of deceit, murder and accelerating danger. Kimberly seems distraught but also defensive and uncooperative. Is it mistrust of the police, who may be putting her son at risk, or does she have darker motivations? (Source: Soho Constable)

Soho Crime

Collusion: A Jack Lennon Investigation by Stuart Neville (Soho Crime 01 October 2010 / $25.00) - Product Description: When Detective Inspector Jack Lennon tries to track down his former lover Marie McKenna and their daughter, his superiors tell him to back off. But now an assassin stalks Belfast, tying up loose ends for a vengeance-driven old man. As Lennon unravels a conspiracy that links his daughter to a killer named Fegan, the line between friend and enemy blurs. (see review)

The Ghosts of Belfast by Stuart Neville (Soho Crime 01 October 2010 / $14.00) - Product Description: A onetime IRA hit man, haunted by ghosts, stalks his former bosses.

See our review of The Ghosts of Belfast in our November 2009 issue. (Source: Soho Crime)

St. Martin's Press

The Prostitutes' Ball (Shane Scully) by Stephen J. Cannell (St. Martin's Press 12 October 2010 / $25.99) - Product Description: Detective Shane Scully responds to a call in the Hollywood hills at a once-immaculate mansion, the scene of an infamous murder twenty-five years prior. He discovers the remnants of a lavish pool party. The revelers have fled, leaving three dead bodies in their wake, all shot with the same gun. One is an acclaimed film producer. The other two, a pair of gorgeous women.

With his new partner, Sumner "Hitch" Hitchens, Scully begins to investigate what looks to be an open-and-shut case: The women were hired prostitutes, and there's security video of an angry husband firing on all three. A simple case of brutal revenge. But nothing is ever as simple as it seems: There's a single spent bullet casing that doesn't match the rest.

From that single bullet emerges a story of love, murder, suicide, and one of the biggest financial frauds in L.A. history. Someone has gone to great lengths to cover up a decades-old crime, and as Scully and Hitch get closer to the answer, they find themselves in a killer's crosshairs. (see review)

The Sleepwalkers by Paul Grossman (St. Martin's Press 12 October 2010 / $24.99) - Product Description: Berlin, 1932.  In the final weeks of the Weimar Republic, as Hitler and his National Socialist party angle to assume control of Germany, beautiful girls are seen sleepwalking through the streets.  Then, a young woman of mysterious origin, with her legs bizarrely deformed, is pulled dead from the Havel River. Willi Kraus, a high ranking detective in Berlin's police force, begins a murder investigation.

A decorated World War I hero and the nation's most famous detective, Willi also is a Jew.  Despite his elite status in the criminal police, he is disturbed by the direction Germany is taking. Working urgently to identify the dead woman and solve the murder, Willi finds his superiors diverting him at every turn, and is forced to waste precious time on a politically-sensitive missing person case. Colleagues seem to avoid him; a man on a streetcar stops him from reading a newspaper over his shoulder; he is uncomfortably aware of being watched. But he persists, and soon enters the dangerous Berlin underworld of debauched nightclubs, prostitutes with secrets to hide, and a hypnotist with troubling connections.

As he moves through darkness closer to the truth, Willi begins to understand that much more than the solution to a murder is at stake. What he discovers will mean that his life, the lives of his friends and family, and Germany itself will never be the same.

(see review)

Vanguard Press

Christmas at The Mysterious Bookshop by (Vanguard Press 12 October 2010 / $24.95) - Product Description: Each year, for the past seventeen years, Otto Penzler, owner of the legendary Mysterious Bookshop in New York City, has commissioned an original story by a leading mystery writer. The requirements were that it be a mystery/ crime/suspense story, that it be set during the Christmas season, and that at least some of the action must take place in The Mysterious Bookshop. These stories were then produced as pamphlets, 1,000 copies, and given to customers of the bookstore as a Christmas present.

Now, all of these stories have been collected in one volume—Christmas at the Mysterious Bookshop. Some of the tales are humorous, others suspenseful, and still others mystifying. This charming one-of-a-kind collection is a perfect Christmas gift, appropriate for all ages and tastes.

Contributors include: Charles Ardai; Lisa Atkinson; George Baxt; Lawrence Block; Mary Higgins Clark; Thomas H. Cook; Ron Goulart; Jeremiah Healy; Edward D. Hoch; Rupert Holmes; Andrew Klavan; Michael Malone; Ed McBain; Anne Perry; S.J. Rozan; Jonathan Santlofer; and Donald E. Westlake. (Source: Vanguard Press)

Velocity by Alan Jacobson (Vanguard Press 05 October 2010 / $25.95) - Product Description: Renowned FBI profiler Karen Vail returns in Velocity, national bestselling author Alan Jacobson's most explosive thriller to date. Detective Robby Hernandez, Vail's boyfriend, has vanished into the dense air of a Napa Valley evening. There are no clues to his whereabouts, other than blood stain and tenuous connections to a vicious serial killer operating it the wine country.

As the task force struggles with Robby's disappearance, the killer challenges Vail by boldly leaving his high profile victims in public places. Is this offender somehow responsible for Robby's disappearance? Evidence suggests that he is-but just when Vail and the task force begin to make progress, the FBI orders Vail to return to Quantico to handle a case of vital importance.

Back in Washington, Vail engages convert government operative Hector DeSantos to determine what happened to Robby. It's a move that backfires when DeSantos's confidential informants lead them into unforeseen dangers, forcing Vail to face off against powerful foes unlike any she's ever encountered, threatening her life, her career…all that she holds dear.

In a frantic race against time that takes them from the monuments of Washington D.C. to the wealthy beach enclaves of San Diego and the bright excesses of Las Vegas, shocking truths emerge-truths that will forever change Karen Vail. (see review)

William Morrow

Ghost in Trouble (Bailey Ruth Raeburn) by Carolyn Hart (William Morrow 01 October 2010 / $19.99) - Product Description: When Bailey Ruth Raeburn passed over into the great beyond, she was delighted to discover her sleuthing days would last an eternity. Joining Heaven's Department of Good Intentions, she uses her unique advantages as a ghost—sometimes you see her, sometimes you don't—to help those in need and ensure the wicked get their just deserts.

However, on this latest mission, Bailey Ruth finds it more difficult than ever to keep up with her boss Wiggins's rules for good spirit deportment. Not only is the woman she is supposed to save determined to thwart Bailey Ruth's good intentions at every turn, she just so happens to be one of Bailey Ruth's oldest enemies. Not that that should matter to one of Heaven's best and brightest emissaries, but still, there is only so much a person can put up with—living or dead.

But solving Bailey Ruth's toughest case yet means managing a recalcitrant charge, a fraudulent medium, a mother's heartbreak, old passions and new, and a telltale rawhide dog bone. Heaven help her!

(Source: William Morrow)

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