Wednesday, March 30, 2016

April 2016 New Mystery Releases!

Spring has sprung-- at least it has here in the desert-- and as always my fancy turns to thoughts of new books. (Especially since I just reorganized my To Be Read shelves and discovered that I have a bit more room!)

April seems to have a little something for everyone, including some favorite authors, so it was a bit difficult to narrow my list down. I tried to get it to my usual thirteen, but I just couldn't. Fourteen picks this month, and I've got them arranged by release date. Of course I've also included all the information you'll need to find each title at your favorite "book procurement" locations. Book synopses are courtesy of Amazon.  Happy Reading!

=== April 1 ===

Title: The Bachelor Girl's Guide to Murder
Series: #1 in the Herringford and Watts historical series set in 1910 Toronto, Canada
ISBN: 9780736966405
Publisher: Harvest House
Paperback, 224 pages

Synopsis: "In 1910 Toronto, while other bachelor girls perfect their domestic skills and find husbands, two friends perfect their sleuthing skills and find a murderer.

Inspired by their fascination with all things Sherlock Holmes, best friends and flatmates Merinda and Jem launch a consulting detective business. The deaths of young Irish women lead Merinda and Jem deeper into the mire of the city's underbelly, where the high hopes of those dreaming to make a new life in Canada are met with prejudice and squalor.

While searching for answers, donning disguises, and sneaking around where no proper ladies would ever go, they pair with Jasper Forth, a police constable, and Ray DeLuca, a reporter in whom Jem takes a more than professional interest. Merinda could well be Toronto's premiere consulting detective, and Jem may just find a way to put her bachelor girlhood behind her forever--if they can stay alive long enough to do so."  

Title: The High Flyer
Author: Elizabeth Darrell
Series: #1 in the Ben Norton Aviation historical series set in England
ISBN: 9780727885739
Publisher: Severn House
Hardcover, 224 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books

Synopsis: "1930. The Lance family, major shareholders in Marshfield Aviation, watch in horror as their prototype fighter fails to pull out of a dive during a display before government and military VIPs. At the pilot’s funeral, a man introduces himself to the widow as Ben Norton, a close friend of her husband during war service with the Royal Flying Corps.

Ben becomes Marshfield’s new Test Pilot, determined to refute worldwide press claims of a faulty aircraft design. Convinced that deliberate sabotage was behind the crash, the young flyer vows to uncover whoever was responsible. But who is Ben Norton? And why is it that the man he claims to have been his close wartime colleague had not once mentioned Ben to his wife during eight years of marriage?

=== April 5 ===

Title: The Murder of Mary Russell
Series: #15 in the Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes historical series 
ISBN: 9780804177900
Publisher: Bantam Books
Hardcover, 384 pages

Synopsis: "Mary Russell is used to dark secrets—her own, and those of her famous partner and husband, Sherlock Holmes. Trust is a thing slowly given, but over the course of a decade together, the two have forged an indissoluble bond.

And what of the other person to whom Mary Russell has opened her heart: the couple’s longtime housekeeper, Mrs. Hudson? Russell’s faith and affection are suddenly shattered when a man arrives on the doorstep claiming to be Mrs. Hudson’s son.

What Samuel Hudson tells Russell cannot possibly be true, yet she believes him—as surely as she believes the threat of the gun in his hand. In a devastating instant, everything changes. And when the scene is discovered—a pool of blood on the floor, the smell of gunpowder in the air—the most shocking revelation of all is that the grim clues point directly to Clara Hudson.

Or rather to Clarissa, the woman she was before Baker Street.

The key to Russell’s sacrifice lies in Mrs. Hudson’s past. To uncover the truth, a frantic Sherlock Holmes must put aside his anguish and push deep into his housekeeper’s secrets—to a time before her disguise was assumed, before her crimes were buried away.

There is death here, and murder, and trust betrayed.

And nothing will ever be the same.

Title: An Unhappy Medium
Author: Dawn Eastman
Series: #4 in the Family Fortune cozy series set in western Michigan
ISBN: 9780425282809
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime
Mass Market Paperback, 304 pages

Synopsis: "All of Crystal Haven, Michigan, is psyching up to participate in a Zombie Fun Run organized by Clyde’s nephew Seth, but Clyde is fretful about the undead festivities. For one thing, her sister, Grace, has unexpectedly returned to town after fifteen years. For another, Clyde has the nagging feeling that something is about to go wrong...

When one of the zombie runners is found murdered and then Grace disappears, Clyde realizes her grim premonition is dead-on. Now, she and her police detective boyfriend Mac must find a ghoulish murderer before someone points the finger at Grace. And when a tangled web of family secrets and old grudges combines with a mysterious case of stolen diamonds, even someone as quick-witted as Clyde might not be able to outrun a killer...

Title: Braking for Bodies
Author: Duffy Brown
Series: #2 in the Cycle Path cozy series set on Mackinac Island, Michigan
ISBN: 9780425268957  
Publisher: Berkley Prime Crime
Mass Market Paperback, 304 pages

Synopsis: "Moving from Los Angeles to small, picturesque Mackinac Island to work in a bike shop might seem crazy, but Evie knows it’s the best decision she’s ever made. That’s not to say she’s gotten rid of all her stress; after all, the upcoming Lilac Festival has everyone in town riding in circles.

But things really go downhill when a ferry full of tourists—including Evie’s friend Fiona’s former boss, the editor of a sleazy rag in LA—arrives on the island. No one knows why Peephole Perry came all the way to Mackinac, but things aren’t looking good for Fiona when Peep is found dead. Now Evie has to gear up and get a grip on the truth if she wants to clear her friend’s name...

Title: Reading Up a Storm
Author: Eva Gates (AKA Vicki Delany)
Series: #3 in the Lighthouse LIbrary cozy series set in North Carolina
ISBN: 9780451470959
Publisher: NAL
Mass Market Paperback, 336 pages

Synopsis: "After a successful party at Bodie Island’s Lighthouse Library, librarian Lucy Richardson is ready to curl up with her cat, Charles, and a good book. But her R and R is cut short when she notices some mysterious lights leading a small boat to crash into the coast.

The two shipwrecked seafarers survive the ordeal—but one of them shows up dead ashore a few days later. Lucy finds herself again roped into a murder investigation and navigating a sea of suspects, all of whom had motives to deep-six the deceased. And this time, she has a sinking feeling that finding the real killer won’t be so easy..

=== April 7 ===

Title: Inspector Singh Investigates A Frightfully English Execution
Author: Shamini Flint
Series: #6 in the Inspector Singh police procedural series set in London
ISBN: 9780349402727
Publisher: Piatkus
Paperback, 368 pages

Synopsis: "Inspector Singh is irate. He's been instructed to attend a Commonwealth conference on policing in London: a job for paper pushers, not real cops, as far as he is concerned.

And as if that isn't bad enough, his wife is determined to come along to shop for souvenirs and visit previously unknown relatives.

But it isn't long before the cold case that lands on Singh's ample lap turns into a hot potato and he has to outwit Scotland Yard, his wife and London's finest criminals to prevent more frightful executions from occurring on his watch - or indeed, from being added to their number.

=== April 8 ===

Title: Quiet Neighbors
ISBN: 9780738747620 
Publisher: Midnight Ink
Hardcover, 360 pages

Synopsis: "It’s the oldest bookshop in a town full of bookshops; rambling and disordered, full of treasures if you look hard. Jude found one of the treasures when she visited last summer, the high point of a miserable vacation. Now, in the depths of winter, when she has to run away, Lowell’s chaotic bookshop in that backwater of a town is the safe place she runs to. 

Jude needs a bolt-hole; Lowell needs an assistant, and when an affordable rental is thrown in too, life begins to look up. The gravedigger’s cottage isn’t perfect for a woman alone, but at least she has quiet neighbors.

Quiet, but not silent. The long dead and the books they left behind both have tales to tell, and the dusty rooms of the bookshop are not the haven they seem to be. Lowell’s past and Jude’s present are a dangerous cocktail of secrets and lies, and someone is coming to light the taper that could destroy everything.

=== April 12 ===

Title: King Maybe
Author: Timothy Hallinan
Series: #5 in the Junior Bender series set in Los Angeles, California
ISBN: 9781616954321
Publisher: Soho Crime
Hardcover, 400 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books

Synopsis: "Los Angeles’s most talented burglar, Junior Bender, is in the middle of stealing one of the world’s rarest stamps from a professional killer when his luck suddenly turns sour. It takes an unexpected assist to get him out alive, but his escape sets off a chain reaction of blackmail, strong-arming, and escalating crime. By the time Junior is forced to commit his third burglary of the week—in the impregnable fortress that’s home to the ruthless studio mogul called King Maybe—he’s beginning to wish he’d just let the killer take a crack at him."   

Title: Kindred
Author: Steve Robinson
Series: #5 in the Jefferson Tayte Genealogical Crime series set in Germany
ISBN: 9781503954694  
Publisher: Thomas and Mercer
Paperback, 352 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books

Synopsis: "Jefferson Tayte is good at finding people who don’t want to be found. For years he has followed faint genealogical trails to reunite families—and uncover long-hidden secrets. But Tayte is a loner, a man with no ties of his own; his true identity is the most elusive case of his career.

But that could all be about to change. Now Tayte has in his possession the beginnings of a new trail—clues his late mentor had started to gather—that might at last lead to his own family. With Professor Jean Summer, his partner in genealogical sleuthing, he travels to Munich to pick up the scent. But the hunt takes them deep into dangerous territory: the sinister secrets of World War II Germany, and those who must keep them buried at any cost.

When their investigations threaten to undermine a fascist organisation, Tayte and Summer know time is running out. Can they find their way to the dark heart of a deadly history before they become its latest victims?

=== April 19 ===

Title: Design for Dying
Author: Renee Patrick
Series: #1 in the Lillian Frost and Edith Head historical series set in Hollywood, California
ISBN: 9780765381842 
Publisher: Forge Books
Hardcover, 320 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books

Synopsis: "Los Angeles, 1937. Lillian Frost has traded dreams of stardom for security as a department store salesgirl . . . until she discovers she's a suspect in the murder of her former roommate, Ruby Carroll. Party girl Ruby died wearing a gown she stole from the wardrobe department at Paramount Pictures, domain of Edith Head.

Edith has yet to win the first of her eight Academy Awards; right now she's barely hanging on to her job, and a scandal is the last thing she needs. To clear Lillian's name and save Edith's career, the two women join forces.

Unraveling the mystery pits them against a Hungarian princess on the lam, a hotshot director on the make, and a private investigator who's not on the level. All they have going for them are dogged determination, assists from the likes of Bob Hope and Barbara Stanwyck, and a killer sense of style. In show business, that just might be enough.

The first in a series of riveting behind-the-scenes mysteries, Renee Patrick's Design for Dying is a delightful romp through Hollywood's Golden Age.  

Title: War Hawk
Series: #2 in the Tucker Wayne thriller series
ISBN: 9780062135278  
Publisher: William Morrow
Hardcover, 384 pages

Synopsis: "Former Army Ranger Tucker Wayne and his war dog Kane are thrust into a global conspiracy that threatens to shake the foundations of American democracy in this second exciting Sigma Force spinoff adventure from New York Times bestselling authors James Rollins and Grant Blackwood.

Tucker Wayne’s past and his present collide when a former army colleague comes to him for help. She’s on the run from brutal assassins hunting her and her son. To keep them safe, Tucker must discover who killed a brilliant young idealist—a crime that leads back to the most powerful figures in the U.S. government.

From the haunted ruins of a plantation in the deep South to the beachheads of a savage civil war in Trinidad, Tucker and Kane must discover the truth behind a mystery that leads back to World War II, to a true event that is even now changing the world . . . and will redefine what it means to be human.

With no one to trust, they will be forced to break the law, expose national secrets, and risk everything to stop a madman determined to control the future of modern warfare for his own diabolical ends. But can Tucker and Kane withstand a force so indomitable that it threatens our very future?

=== April 26 ===

Title: Murder at the 42nd Street Library
Author: Con Lehane
Series: #1 in the Raymond Ambler amateur sleuth series set in New York City 
ISBN: 9781250009968 
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Hardcover, 320 pages

Synopsis: "This first book in an irresistible new series introduces librarian and reluctant sleuth Raymond Ambler, a doggedly curious fellow who uncovers murderous secrets hidden behind the majestic marble fa├žade of New York City’s landmark 42nd Street Library.

Murder at the 42nd Street Library follows Ambler and his partners in crime-solving as they track down a killer, shining a light on the dark deeds and secret relationships that are hidden deep inside the famous flagship building at the corner of 42nd Street and Fifth Avenue. 

In their search for the reasons behind the murder, Ambler and his crew uncover sinister, and profoundly disturbing, relationships among the scholars studying in the iconic library. Included among the players are a celebrated mystery writer who has donated his papers to the library’s crime fiction collection; that writer’s long-missing daughter, a prominent New York society woman with a hidden past, and more than one of Ambler’s colleagues at the library. Shocking revelations lead inexorably to the traumatic events that follow―the reading room will never be the same."  

Title: Gold of Our Fathers
Author: Kwei Quartey
Series: #4 in the Darko Dawson police procedural series set in Ghana
ISBN: 9781616956301
Publisher: Soho Crime
Hardcover, 368 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books

Synopsis: "Darko Dawson has just been promoted to Chief Inspector in the Ghana Police Service—the promotion even comes with a (rather modest) salary bump. But he doesn’t have long to celebrate because his new boss is transferring him from Accra, Ghana’s capital, out to remote Obuasi in the Ashanti region, an area now notorious for the illegal exploitation of its gold mines.

When Dawson arrives at the Obuasi headquarters, he finds it in complete disarray. The office is a mess of uncatalogued evidence and cold case files, morale is low, and discipline among officers is lax. On only his second day on the job, the body of a Chinese mine owner is unearthed in his own gold quarry. As Dawson investigates the case, he quickly learns how dangerous it is to pursue justice in this kingdom of illegal gold mines, where the worst offenders have so much money they have no fear of the law

This month's new releases are an embarrassment of riches. It's always a good month when there's a new Tim Hallinan... or Kwei Quartey... or Shamini Flint book. The same thing goes for a new Laurie R. King book, but did you read the synopsis of The Murder of Mary Russell? A book that finally focuses on Mrs. Hudson? I can't wait! 

As far as new-to-me authors go, I'm really looking forward to getting my hands on Murder at the 42nd Street Library and Quiet Neighbors. Both of them sound really good, and I have to admit that after meeting Catriona McPherson at Left Coast Crime, I simply have to read one of her books! 

What about you folks? Which of these titles really make your propellers spin? Inquiring minds would love to know!



  1. A bumper crop this time, I think, Cathy. I really want to read the Hallinan, the Flint, the McPherson and the Robinson. And I'm just getting started.... Someone, please hide my credit card!!! ;-)

    1. I could put it in that safe place of mine where I found the books I'd set aside for a giveaway....?

  2. What a fun list of books - maybe of which are on my list as well. I feel the same way about Catriona McPherson - after hearing her at LCC, I want to read her books. And Quiet Neighbors looks like a good place to start.

    1. It certainly does, doesn't it? Can't wait!

  3. I've got the Mary Russell book pre-ordered. Can't wait for it to show up on my Nook.

    1. When I read that it focused on Mrs. Hudson, I think I did a little happy dance around the house.


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