Wednesday, July 30, 2014

August 2014 New Mystery Releases!

I don't know about the rest of you, but it seems as though summer is flying by at the speed of light. Since this is my prime reading season when I really clear spaces on my to-be-read shelves, I'm torn between wanting to read faster! faster! and wanting to saunter my way through volumes, savoring each page. Hopefully I'll find a way to do both!

I may be clearing shelf space, but I'm still keeping an eye peeled for intriguing new mysteries. The following list contains my picks for new crime fiction available in August. The books are grouped according to their release dates, and I've included all the information you'll need to find them at all your favorite book spots. Synopses are courtesy of Amazon.

Happy Reading! 

=== August 1 === 

Title: Tahoe Ghost Boat
Author: Todd Borg
#12 in the Owen McKenna P.I. series set in Lake Tahoe, California
ISBN: 9781931296229
Publisher: Thriller Press
Paperback, 384 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books

Synopsis: "Gertie O'Leary is a 15-year-old girl with a messy bird's nest of red hair, a serious softball pitch, and a dream to be a movie director. She also has a $2 million price on her head.

When a gang led by a killer the FBI calls Mikhailo the Monster takes Gertie as the centerpiece of an extortion plot, the girl's mother calls Tahoe Detective Owen McKenna for help.

McKenna finds out that Gertie's stepfather has just died in what looks like a boating accident and that Gertie's mother cares more about not losing money to blackmail than saving her daughter.

As the unwanted child of divorced, self-focused parents, Gertie has no defenders. So McKenna appoints himself her savior. But McKenna is one man up against a small army of twisted murderers whose orders are to kill the girl...."

Title: The Devil's Chair
#5 in the Coroner Martha Gunn series set in Shrewsbury, England
ISBN: 9780727883896
Publisher: Severn House
Hardcover, 224 pages

Synopsis: "In the peaceful setting of the National Trust near Church Stretton, south of Shrewsbury, Tracey Walsh drives herself and her four-year-old daughter, Daisy, up the remote Burway in the early hours of the morning, tragically loses control of her car and crashes into the valley below.

Tracey is rushed to hospital, but where is Daisy? She has vanished, provoking an intense police search of the area around the Devil’s Chair, land that is rife with legends and strange stories of witchcraft, sorcery and unexplained disappearances. Detective Inspector Alex Randall, the senior investigating officer, soon admits to coroner Martha Gunn that he is baffled by the case.

Alex and Martha must sift through fact and fiction, folklore and reality in their search for answers

=== August 5 ===

Title: If Catfish Had Nine Lives
#4 in the Country Cooking School cozy series set in southern Missouri
ISBN: 9780425269282
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime
Mass Market Paperback, 304 pages

Synopsis: "Betts Winston has inherited more than her cooking skills from her grandmother—she can also see and talk to ghosts of people that once roamed the streets of Broken Rope, Missouri, in the days of the Old West…

With Gram’s Country Cooking School on spring break, Betts and Gram are taking part in this year’s cowboy poetry convention, offering lessons on frying catfish over an open campfire. But when a staged gunfight ends in real death and her brother Teddy becomes a prime suspect, Betts may be the one to jump from the frying pan into the fire.

After her ghostly guardian Jerome appears to watch her back and a spectral Pony Express rider gallops into town with some unfinished business, Broken Rope starts to seem more like a cowboy ghost convention. With trouble on both sides of this mortal coil, it’s up to Betts to clear her brother, put the spirits to rest, and make sure the true killer doesn’t become the one who got away.

Title: Murder in the Mystery Suite
Author: Ellery Adams
#1 in the Book Retreat cozy series set in rural western Virginia
ISBN: 9780425265598
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime
Mass market Paperback, 304 pages

Synopsis: "Tucked away in the rolling hills of rural western Virginia is the storybook resort of Storyton Hall, catering to book lovers who want to get away from it all. To increase her number of bookings, resort manager Jane Steward has decided to host a Murder and Mayhem week so that fans of the mystery genre can gather together for some role-playing and fantasy crime solving.

But when the winner of the scavenger hunt, Felix Hampden, is found dead in the Mystery Suite, and the valuable book he won as his prize is missing, Jane realizes one of her guests is an actual murderer. Amid a resort full of fake detectives, Jane is bound and determined to find a real-life killer. There’s no room for error as Jane tries to unlock this mystery before another vacancy opens up…

Title: Queen of Hearts
Author: Rhys Bowen
#8 in the Royal Spyness historical series set in the U.S.
ISBN: 9780425260364
Publisher: Berkley 
Hardcover, 304 pages

Synopsis: "My mother, the glamorous and much-married actress, is hearing wedding bells once again—which is why she must hop across the pond for a quickie divorce in Reno. To offer my moral support, and since all expenses are paid by her new hubby-to-be, Max, I agree to make the voyage with her.

Crossing the Atlantic, with adventure in the air and wealthy men aboard, Mother all but forgets about Max and matrimony—especially when movie mogul Cy Goldman insists on casting her in his next picture.

Meanwhile, I find myself caught up in the secret investigation of a suspected jewel thief. Lucky for me, the lead investigator happens to be my dashing beau, Darcy!

Mother’s movie and Darcy’s larceny lead everyone to Cy’s Hollywood home, where the likes of Charlie Chaplin are hanging about and there’s enough romantic intrigue to fill a double feature. But we hardly get a chance to work out the sleeping arrangements before Cy turns up dead—as if there wasn’t enough drama already…

Title: Paw and Order
Author: Spencer Quinn
#7 in the Chet and Bernie series set in Washington, DC
ISBN:  9781476703398
Publisher: Atria Books
Hardcover, 320 pages

Synopsis: "Chet and Bernie pay a visit to Bernie’s girlfriend, Suzie Sanchez, a crack reporter living in far-off Washington, DC. She’s working on a big story she can’t talk about, but when her source, a mysterious Brit with possible intelligence connections, runs into trouble of the worst kind, Bernie suddenly finds himself under arrest.

Meanwhile Chet gets to know a powerful DC operative who may or may not have the goods on an ambitious politician. Soon Chet and Bernie are sucked into an international conspiracy, battling unfamiliar forces under the blinking red eyes of a strange bird that Chet notices from the get-go but seems to have slipped by everybody else. Most menacing of all is Barnum, a guinea pig with the fate of the nation in his tiny paws.

As Harry Truman famously quipped, “If you want a friend in Washington, get a dog.” Too bad he didn’t get to meet Chet!

Title: The Counterfeit Lady
Author: Kate Parker
#2 in the Victorian Bookshop cozy series set in Victorian London
ISBN: 9780425266618
Publisher: Berkley
Paperback, 320 pages

Synopsis: "Who would suspect antiquarian bookseller Georgia Fenchurch of leading a double life—as a private investigator for the clandestine Archivist Society in Victorian London? When England’s national security is compromised, Georgia must pose as a titled lady to root out a spy…

A cousin of Georgia’s dear friend, Lady Phyllida Monthalf, is brutally murdered in her home during the theft of blueprints of a new battleship designed by her husband—who now stands accused of her murder…and treason. The Duke of Blackford, in service to Whitehall, enlists Georgia and the Archivist Society to assist in the investigation. Playing the part of the duke’s new paramour, Georgia gains entry into the upper echelons of London’s elite, where amidst elegant dinners and elaborate parties a master spy schemes to lay hands on the stolen plans.

The duke is no stranger to the world of international espionage, but Georgia is out of her element in more ways than one. She must not allow her genuine attraction to the duke—or her obsession with finding her parents’ killer—to distract her from her role. But when a mysterious stranger threatens to expose her, the counterfeit lady may be in real trouble…

Title: Well Read, Then Dead
Author: Terrie Farley Moran
#1 in the Read 'em and Eat cozy series set in Florida
ISBN: 9780425270288
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime
Mass Market Paperback, 304 pages

Synopsis: "Nestled in the barrier islands of Florida’s Gulf Coast, Fort Myers Beach is home to Mary “Sassy” Cabot and Bridget Mayfield—owners of the bookstore café, Read ’Em and Eat. But when they’re not dishing about books or serving up scones, Sassy and Bridgy are keeping tabs on hard-boiled murder.

Read ’Em and Eat is known for its delicious breakfast and lunch treats, along with quite a colorful clientele. If it’s not Rowena Gustavson loudly debating the merits of the current book club selection, it’s Miss Augusta Maddox lecturing tourists on rumors of sunken treasure among the islands. It’s no wonder Sassy’s favorite is Delia Batson, a regular at the Emily Dickinson table. Augusta’s cousin and best friend Delia is painfully shy—which makes the news of her murder all the more shocking.

No one is more distraught than Augusta, and Sassy wants to help any way she can. But Augusta doesn’t have time for sympathy. She wants Delia’s killer found—and she’s not taking no for an answer. Now Sassy is on the case, and she’d better act fast before there’s any more trouble in paradise.

=== August 12 ===

Title: An Unwilling Accomplice
Author: Charles Todd
#6 in the Bess Crawford historical series set during World War I
ISBN: 9780062237194
Publisher: William Morrow
Hardcover, 352 pages

Synopsis: "Home on leave, Bess Crawford is asked to accompany a wounded soldier confined to a wheelchair to Buckingham Palace, where he’s to be decorated by the King. The next morning when Bess goes to collect Wilkins, he has vanished. Both the Army and the nursing service hold Bess negligent for losing the war hero, and there will be an inquiry.

Then comes disturbing word from the Shropshire police, complicating the already difficult situation: Wilkins has been spotted, and he’s killed a man. If Bess is to save her own reputation, she must find Wilkins and uncover the truth. But the elusive soldier has disappeared again and even the Shropshire police have lost him. Suddenly, the moral implications of what has happened—that a patient in her charge has committed murder—become more important to Bess than her own future. She’s going to solve this mysterious puzzle, but righting an injustice and saving her honor may just cost Bess her life."

=== August 14 ===

Title: No Safe House
Author: Linwood Barclay 
Follow-up to No Time for Goodbye
ISBN: 9780451414205
Publisher: NAL Hardcover
Hardcover, 464 pages

Synopsis: "Seven years ago, Terry Archer and his familywho first appeared in No Time for Goodbye, experienced a horrific ordeal that nearly cost them their lives. Today, the echoes of that fateful night are still audible. Terry’s wife, Cynthia, is living separate from her husband and daughter after her own personal demons threatened to ruin her relationship with them permanently. Their daughter, Grace, is rebelling against her parents’ seemingly needless overprotection. Terry is just trying to keep his family together. And the entire town is reeling from the senseless murder of two elderly locals.

But when Grace foolishly follows her delinquent boyfriend into a strange house, the Archers must do more than stay together. They must stay alive. Because now they have all been unwillingly drawn into the shadowy depths of their seemingly idyllic hometown.

For there, they will be reconnected with the man who saved their lives seven years ago, but who still remains a ruthless, unrepentant criminal. They will encounter killers for hire working all sides. And they will learn that there are some things people value much more than money, and will do anything to get it.

Caught in a labyrinth between family loyalty and ultimate betrayal, Terry must find a way to extricate his family from a lethal situation he still doesn’t fully comprehend. All he knows is that to live, he may have to do the unthinkable

=== August 19 ===

Title: Windigo Island
#14 in the Cork O'Connor series set in Minnesota
ISBN: 9781476749235
Publisher: Atria Books
Hardcover, 352 pages

Synopsis: "When the body of a teenage Ojibwe girl washes up on the shore of an island in Lake Superior, the residents of the nearby Bad Bluff reservation whisper that it was the work of a mythical beast, the Windigo, or a vengeful spirit called Michi Peshu. Such stories have been told by the Ojibwe people for generations, but they don’t solve the mystery of how the girl and her friend, Mariah Arceneaux, disappeared a year ago. At the request of the Arceneaux family, Cork O’Connor, former sheriff turned private investigator, is soon on the case.

But on the Bad Bluff reservation, nobody’s talking. Still, Cork puts enough information together to find a possible trail. In Duluth, Minnesota, he learns from an Ojibwe social worker that both Duluth and the Twin Cities are among the most active areas in the US for sex trafficking of vulnerable women, many of whom are young Native Americans. As the investigation deepens, so does the danger. Cork realizes he’s not only up against those who control the lucrative sex enterprise—he must also battle government agencies more than willing to look the other way.

Yet Cork holds tight to his purpose—Mariah, an innocent fifteen-year-old girl at the heart of this grotesque web, who is still missing and whose family is desperate to get her back. With only the barest hope of saving her, Cork prepares to battle men whose evil rivals that of the bloodthirsty Windigo and who are as powerful, elusive, and vengeful as the dark spirit Michi Peshu

=== August 26 ===

Title: Left Turn at Paradise
#2 in the digital Rare Book series set in Kansas City, Missouri, and New Zealand
Publisher: Random House Alibi
eBook, 250 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books

Synopsis: "Michael Bevan is barely scraping by with his used bookstore and rare book collection when he discovers a timeworn journal that may change everything. Dating back to 1768, the tattered diary appears to be a chronicle kept during the first of legendary seafarer Captain James Cook’s three epic voyages through the Pacific islands. If it’s as valuable as Mike thinks it is, its sale may just bring enough to keep his faltering used bookstore afloat for another year.

Then he meets a pair of London dealers with startling news: Adrian Hart and Penelope Wilkes claim to possess the journal of Cook’s second voyage. Is it possible a third diary exists? One which might detail Cook’s explosive final voyage—and his death at the hands of native Hawaiians? Together, all three would be the holy grail of Pacific exploration. But before Mike can act, the two journals are stolen.

Chasing them down will sweep Michael, Adrian, and Penelope across the globe—past a dead body or two—and into a very sinister slice of paradise. High in the Southern Alps of New Zealand, in a remote and secretive Maori compound, a secret rests in the hands in of a man daring enough to rewrite history . . . and desperate enough to kill.

Title: The Long Way Home
Author: Louise Penny
#10 in the Chief Inspector Armand Gamache series set in southern Quebec, Canada
ISBN: 9781250022066
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Hardcover, 384 pages

Synopsis: "Happily retired in the village of Three Pines, Armand Gamache, former Chief Inspector of Homicide with the Sûreté du Québec, has found a peace he’d only imagined possible. On warm summer mornings he sits on a bench holding a small book, The Balm in Gilead, in his large hands. “There is a balm in Gilead,” his neighbor Clara Morrow reads from the dust jacket, “to make the wounded whole.”

While Gamache doesn’t talk about his wounds and his balm, Clara tells him about hers. Peter, her artist husband, has failed to come home. Failed to show up as promised on the first anniversary of their separation. She wants Gamache’s help to find him. Having finally found sanctuary, Gamache feels a near revulsion at the thought of leaving Three Pines. “There’s power enough in Heaven,” he finishes the quote as he contemplates the quiet village, “to cure a sin-sick soul.” And then he gets up. And joins her.

Together with his former second-in-command, Jean-Guy Beauvoir, and Myrna Landers, they journey deeper and deeper into Québec. And deeper and deeper into the soul of Peter Morrow. A man so desperate to recapture his fame as an artist, he would sell that soul. And may have. The journey takes them further and further from Three Pines, to the very mouth of the great St. Lawrence river.  To an area so desolate, so damned, the first mariners called it the land God gave to Cain. And there they discover the terrible damage done by a sin-sick soul."
What an embarrassment of riches! Which titles caught your fancy so much that they made it to your wish list? Inquiring minds would love to know!


  1. OK, this is not fair, Cathy! A Penny, a Masters, a Barclay and a Todd in the same month!?!? My credit card company is going to cut me off!

    1. I know what you mean, Margot. I'm going to have to stand at my favorite intersection holding my WILL WORK FOR BOOKS sign!


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