crime/suspense fiction

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The Extinction Club by Jeffrey Moore

This funny, dark, literary crime novel, marketed as a "neo-noir thriller" is loads of fun. The protaginst, Nile Nightingale, is on the run and hiding out in Quebec's remote Laurentian mountains when he witnesses a bloody christmas package dropped into a frozen bog. Inside the package he discovers a teenage animal rights activist who he gradually nurses back to health while poachers and corrupt accomplices circle.

A Conspiracy of Faith by Jussi Adler-Olsen

Another entry in the crowded Nordic noir field—but this one actually has some humor (black humor, anyway). Detective Carl Morck is in charge of the cold case department in Copenhagen. In the midst of coping with various bureaucratic office crises, he receives a years-old message in a bottle (written in blood)—passed along by Scottish colleagues after being found along their coastline—that appears to be from a boy in life-threatening danger somewhere on the Danish coast.

Robert Barnard: Master of the Cozy

Robert Barnard's U.S. debut novel, A Little Local Murder, set the pattern for the many popular mysteries to follow: wryly funny and ingeniously plotted social satires disguised as English cozies (i.e.

Blue Monday by Nicci French

The main protagonist of this new psychological suspense series is therapist Frieda Klein, an unlikely and reluctant advisor to the police detective investigating the abduction of a five-year-old boy. The plot unfolds apace, linking the crime to an unsolved 20-year-old child abduction case, and to a current patient of Frieda’s with strange dreams that seem to coincide with details of both abductions. This is a really satisfying read with a directly related sequel called Tuesday’s Gone. Do not, repeat do not, read the second one first, or it will spoil the story.

A Walk in the Dark by Gianrico Carofiglio

Middle-aged lawyer Guido Guerrieri faces a perplexing case when a young woman accuses her ex-boyfriend—the son of a powerful judge—of abuse, and no witnesses are willing to testify on her behalf. This novel, and others in the Guido Guerrieri series, rise above the legal thriller genre; they are revealing and thought-provoking explorations of legal philosophy (Italian style), loneliness, love, trust and forgiveness. You will want to read them all.

The Fear Artist by Timothy Hallinan

On his way out of a Bangkok store laden with two full cans of paint, travel writer Poke Rafferty collides with a running man who dies in his arms, but not before muttering a name. Talk about being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

The Anatomist's Apprentice by Tessa Harris

In 1780s London Dr. Thomas Silkstone, a native of Philadelpia, has been studying anatomy for seven years and is gaining a reputation for himself as a skilled and dedicated anatomist.   Thomas would be more than willing to continue to pursue his studies purely to gain more knowledge of the human body but when Lady Lydia Farrell requests his aid in discovering whether her brother, Earl Crick, was poisoned he finds himself drawn out of his laboratory and into a court room.  Lady Farrell is desperate to find the truth as the local rumor mill has cast her husband as the murderer.

Stormy Weather by Carl Hiaasen

This comedic crime novel teems with memorable characters and laugh-out-loud situations. When you mix the aftermath of a destructive hurricane with money hungry ex-cons, an insane ex-governor, a rogue band of monkeys, innocent honeymooners, and an independently wealthy handsome skull juggler looking for direction, high jinks and hilarity are bound to happen. Check Our Catalog

Vigilante by Stephen J. Cannell

Not intellectual fare, but wonderful fun and distraction and a great way to recontextualize whatever you're dealing with lately.  "You think you have problems?"  Cannell's recurring hero Shane Scully is up against an evildoer you can picture easily enough in your mind, a lurid "Reality TV star" whose mission in life seems to make life miserable for police.  One measure of a well written story is the solutions you think you have drawn as you move toward the conclusion, telling yourself how good it will feel, and how vindicated you as reader will be, when it turns out you had alre

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