Kids killing other kids: The horror always jolts us because we remember childhood games and giggled secrets, not murder, yet the ugly presence of bullying paints a different reality. In Scottish author Lisa Ballantyne’s harrowing first novel, 8-year-old Ben Stokes is the victim.
Alice Bhatti, junior nurse, recently released from 14 months in jail for an unseemly dust-up we’ll only learn about later, applies for a job at the Sacred Heart Hospital for All Ailments, a shambling Catholic institution that can accommodate 7,000 patients at a time.
Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard’s book offers »a saga of courage, cowardice and betrayal« with »lessons … relevant to all our lives.« Those lessons are not entirely clear after reading »Killing Lincoln«, but O’Reilly and Dugard suggest that they involve awareness.
First, the (possibly) bad news: If you’re expecting Stephen King to provide an alternative history of what America would have been like had John F. Kennedy not been assassinated in Dallas, put those expectations aside.
Are JG’s titles following a slow ramp to dreariness? The muted menace of »The Firm« and »The Client« has given way to such spine-tinglers as »The Broker« and now »The Litigators«. With a chill of foreboding, I await »The Trademark and Copyright Specialists«.
Bruises afflict nearly everyone and everything in Richard Stevenson’s 12th Donald Strachey mystery. Hired thugs pummel Strachey, a gay Albany PI, as he tries to get the dirt on Louderbush, a candidate for governor of New York running in the Democratic primary.
Maybe »The most dangerous thing« isn’t the specter of bogeymen in the woods or old companions who can’t keep their mouths shut; maybe »The most dangerous thing« turns out to be the relentless passage of time.
Sorry, haters, but this is a fantastic book: an Appalachian Gothic with a low-level fever that runs alternately warm and chilling. Frazier has left the 19th century and the picaresque form to produce a cleverly knitted thriller.
Gianrico Carofiglio, the author of the Guido Guerrieri legal thrillers – »Temporary Perfections« is the fourth – is as exacting, contemplative and sometimes downright poky as any crime writer I can think of.
A man whose name we do not know knocks on the door of a woman who also remains anonymous. She recognizes the visitor and invites him in. After a bit of small talk, he renders her unconscious and drives her to an apartment, where he nails her hands to the wall.
In 2004, at age 69, Stella Rimington published »At Risk«, the first in a series of espionage novels featuring MI5 operative Liz Carlyle. That book marked the start of a successful second career for this remarkable woman.
For readers who love a mystery but cannot stomach the relentless violence of much modern crime fiction, a kinder, gentler alternative exists: the cozy. Cozies are mysteries that contain little or no sex, violence or dirty talk.