Joy Ellis’s newest novel Fire on the Fens demonstrates why she is one of the foremost authors of British police procedurals. The cases that challenge Nikki Galena and her team are believable but never formulaic or repetitive. As you read the Nikki Galena novels and come to know her, Joseph Easter and the rest of her team, they become like family. They care about their job and readers care about them.
In Fire on the Fens, an arsonist is on the loose, first tackling structures then moving on to murder. Each fire targets a particular individual, and there are no apparent links between victims. Moreover the victims appear to have lived spotless lives and were known as generous and caring. Meanwhile, a group identifying themselves as Luciferians has settled in town, led by an affluent and charismatic businessman.
Eminently readable and far from straightforward, Fire on the Fens is a terr...
Summerland by Hannu Rajaniemi
Sci Fi & Fantasy
Pub Date 26 Jun 2018
Summerland is an impressive novel blending spy-fi and science fiction. If you only pick one science fiction novel to read this summer, this is it. Summerland is set in an alternate Britain circa 1938. The Cold War is in full swing, but there are two fronts - the world of the living and the world of the dead. The world of the novel was changed forever when the Summerland was discovered. Once thought to be gone forever, the souls of the dead persevere and retain their intelligence. Technology allows communication between the living and the dead, and spy services make use of agents both living and dead.
Rachel White is a British agent in charge of a Russian defector. Before he dies he offers her a piece of information - there is a mole in the British operation. But how do you catch a mole who is already dead?
The richly imagined world of Summerland is difficult...
Death On Dartmoor A West Country Crime Mystery Book 2
by Bernie Steadman
Mystery & Thrillers
Pub Date 25 Jun 2018
Death on Dartmoor is an excellent British police procedural. DI Hellier and his team are three dimensional, the differences in their personalities, talents and approaches making for a realistic investigation. They have lives beyond their jobs. The cases they are faced with are daunting. In the one, they have a pair of teens, one dead, one severely injured from the use of badly made “legal” highs. Finding the seller and the maker of the drugs before someone else is killed is a necessity. They are also tasked with finding the identities of two headless, handless corpses as well as their killer - a case made all the more difficult by the state of decay.
Death on Dartmoor is appealing because it combines a complex plot with a very human set of investigators and supporting characters. It makes for a solid addition to the genre.
Small independent publishers can be hit or miss on quality. There are times however that you find a gem. Jason Mather’s Shadow Life is one such gem. It is a suspenseful science fiction thriller with plenty of fast paced action. Mather does a bang up job of keeping the reader’s attention while only slowly revealing the novel’s secrets. And then there are the characters. Each is flawed, damaged in some way, but they have a nobility that makes you care about them. The villains, particularly Brigham (who may remind you of the orange cheeto in office) are detestable. Brigham is the misogynist who leads the strictly religious Salt Lake City, where women are property and population growth is out of control.
The novel begins with the death of Hans and his reawakening. Technology allows for the rebuilding of the human body, but the mind is another question entirely. The situation that...
The Bathwater Conspiracy by Janet Kellough
Kobo Writing Life
Sci Fi & Fantasy
Pub Date 27 Apr 2018
Part speculative fiction, part murder mystery The Bathwater Conspiracy is a fascinating novel. After a devastating virus leads to the elimination of all men, society has redeveloped, relying on gene banks and artificial insemination. This is not immediately obvious. It is skillfully revealed bit by bit by the author. Mac MacHenry is a detective normally assigned the tiresome tasks, the hard cases with little glory. Then comes the death of a young graduate student. The autopsy is cut short and the Darmes’s (government forces) explanation of the cause of death doesn’t match the wounds. With little prodding, Mac begins investigating on the sly, and what she finds is a secret and a conspiracy that could change life forever.
The story is well done, the world depicted believable - neither a utopia nor a dystopia. There is the implication that there is far less violenc...
The Manton Rempville Murders by Julian Worker
General Fiction (Adult) , Mystery & Thrillers
Pub Date 23 Oct 2014
Ok I admit it the tagline of “how many bodies can one dog find” drew my immediate attention to this light British police procedural. The Manton Rempville Murders will readily appeal to fans of Midsomer Murders. It is a puzzling whodunnit full of quirky characters and humorous touches. As in the popular Midsomer Murders series, DI Colin Knowles is competent and easy going with a wry sense of humor. Knowles and his DS Barnes exchange ideas and easy banter throughout. While the beginning chapters are a touch awkward, by the end of the first quarter The Manton Rempville Murders has found its sweet spot.
Bingo the retriever has found another body - this time the former under gardener of Manton Rempville Hall, skewered by a ceremonial sword. Despite the lord and lady of the manor’s insistence that no one of their standing could be involved in murd...
Firewalkers: A Recondito Novel Chris Roberson
October 3, 2017
One part invasion of the body snatchers, one part Lovercraftian horror story, Firewalkers is an exciting urban fantasy. A small group of determined heroes, a police detective, a city pathologist and two FBI agents, know the truth behind the drug Ink and those who seek to spread its use. Something from another dimension is using Ink to spread its control over the city of Recondito. Those it takes over are little better than zombies, hollowed out by the shadows pushing through their mind. Knowing of the shadows is enough to put Patrick and the others in danger. But the real question is how to defeat the shadows and prevent their takeover.
I definitely recommend reading Firewalk, the first novel of the series, before you delve into Firewalkers. Otherwise you will be at a loss. Firewalkers is a solidly written sequel, and an excellent piece of sci fi invasion f...
Hex-Rated is an electrifying blend of pulp noir and horror. Jack Brimstone, LA’s newest Private investigator is looking forward to leaving a life of magic behind and spending his days chasing cheating husbands and finding lost dogs. Burying his mentor means freedom from all things strange and wondrous- at least until a beautiful woman shows up after an attack by a vicious demon. Naturally Jack wants to help, besides he’s flat broke and Bee’s locked him out. A paying client is just what he needs. From nazis to porn stars, fist fights to hot sex, Hex Rated has it all.
Armed with a flash wit, the ability to take a punch and a way of leading the ladies purring in satisfaction (not to mention knowledge of the uncanny), Jack charms readers and supporting characters alike. Jason Ridler has a way of making even...
Denver Moon: The Minds of Mars ( Denver Moon ) Warren Hammond , Joshua Viola
FRONTLIST | On Sale Date: April 14, 2018
Paperback | 264 pages
Fiction / Science Fiction / Cyberpunk
Denver Moon: The Minds of Mars is an old school science fiction adventure, featuring a feisty self-sufficient heroine with a talent for finding trouble and facing it eye to eye. Accompanied by her AI Smith, and joined by an assortment of allies, Denver looks to discover whether her grandfather, presumed dead two decades before, is actually alive, and to uncover why his former partner is against her digging into her grandfather’s disappearance.
Denver Moon: The Minds of Mars is straight up science fiction adventure that will thrill fans of classic pulp sci fi. I can easily see this developing into a long running and successful series, I look forward to reading more Denver Moon adventures.
4 / 5
I received a copy of Denver Moon: Minds of Mars from the publisher in exchange for an hone...
March 20, 2018
ISBN 9781612549941, 1612549942
Paperback | 160 pages
Fiction / Mystery & Detective / Cozy
Murder on the SS Rosa is a fun 1920s cozy set aboard a steamship on the way to England. Ginger Gold is smart, sassy and with a title to boot. It’s no wonder she and her friend Haley are invited to dine at the captain’s table, where she gets a clear view of the players and the conflicts going on aboard. When the captain is found murdered, Ginger’s curiosity gets the better of her and soon she is investigating alongside the handsome Chief Inspector Reed. Ginger is clever, but she has a nose for trouble that doesn’t make her popular with the suspects - but never doubt the powers of a determined mind and bootleg whiskey.
Murder on the SS Rosa is a cute cozy with a touch of romance. It will appeal to fans of the Miss Fisher mysteries and other light 1920s cozies. The novel is short, but entertaining...