Wednesday, September 26, 2018

October 2018 New Mystery Releases!

There's nothing like spending summer afternoons in the pool to observe the change of seasons. I'm an old hand at being able to look out over the patio and tell the time by where the shadows are falling. You could call it my own variation of the sundial. In summer, the sun starts its path down the sky to its bed just beyond the roof peak. When the season is winding down, it starts its graceful glide just behind the oleanders across from where I sit... many yards to the left of the roof.

This means that my unheated pool starts cooling off quickly, and last week's day of overcast and the long afternoon of gentle rain put paid to my reading season out in the pool. But-- I still managed to find an overabundance of wonderful new crime fiction that's going to be released during the month of October! I've grouped the titles according to their release dates, and I hope that I've chosen some books that make you do a happy dance and add them to your personal wishlists. Book covers and synopses are courtesy of Amazon.

Let's take a look, shall we?

=== October 2 ===

Title: Death of a Rainmaker
Series: #1 Dust Bowl historical mystery set in 1930s Oklahoma.
320 pages

Synopsis: "When a rainmaker is bludgeoned to death in the pitch-blackness of a colossal dust storm, small-town sheriff Temple Jennings shoulders yet another burden in the hard times of the 1930s Dust Bowl. The killing only magnifies Temple's ongoing troubles: a formidable opponent in the upcoming election, the repugnant burden of enforcing farm foreclosures, and his wife's lingering grief over the loss of their eight-year-old son.

As the sheriff and his young deputy investigate the murder, their suspicions focus on a teenager, Carmine, serving with the Civilian Conservation Corps. The deputy, himself a former CCCer, struggles with remaining loyal to the corps while pursuing his own aspirations as a lawman.

When the investigation closes in on Carmine, Temple's wife, Etha, quickly becomes convinced of his innocence and sets out to prove it. But Etha's own probe soon reveals a darker web of secrets, which imperil Temple's chances of reelection and cause the husband and wife to confront their long-standing differences about the nature of grief.

=== October 8 ===

Title: The Question of the Dead Mistress
Series: #5 in the Asperger's cozy series set in New Jersey.
288 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books.

Synopsis: "'Is my husband having an affair with a dead woman?'
For Samuel Hoenig, the proprietor of a unique agency called Questions Answered, the answer to this most recent question is simple. Since there's absolutely no evidence that apparitions exist, it would be impossible for Ginny Fontaine's husband to be having an affair with one.

But Samuel's associate, Janet Washburn, isn't so easily convinced.

Wrestling with his complicated feelings for Ms. Washburn, Samuel proposes that she take the lead on the question. As soon as her research begins, the husband in question ends up dead, leaving Janet and Samuel wondering if they stand a ghost of a chance at unraveling this twisted tale of danger and deceit."

Title: Hunting the Saturday Night Strangler
Series: #2 in the Bitter Wind P.I. series set in Wyoming.
288 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books.

Synopsis: "Two innocent victims, strangled to death on consecutive Saturday nights. Even as they see the pattern emerging, retired detective Arn Anderson and TV reporter Ana Maria Villarreal can't seem to convince the Cheyenne police that the killer may strike again.

Hunting a remorseless murderer leads Arn and Ana Maria down a rabbit hole of ranchers and rustlers. But the closer they come to catching the killer, the more they're met with suspicion. And when their investigation collides with a desperate act of violence, they wonder whether they're unwinding the killer's twisted thread of clues or tightening their own noose."

=== October 9 ===

Title: The Clockmaker's Daughter
Author: Kate Morton
Standalone historical mystery set in England.
496 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books.

Synopsis: "My real name, no one remembers.
The truth about that summer, no one else knows.

In the summer of 1862, a group of young artists led by the passionate and talented Edward Radcliffe descends upon Birchwood Manor on the banks of the Upper Thames. Their plan: to spend a secluded summer month in a haze of inspiration and creativity. But by the time their stay is over, one woman has been shot dead while another has disappeared; a priceless heirloom is missing; and Edward Radcliffe's life is in ruins.

Over one hundred and fifty years later, Elodie Winslow, a young archivist in London, uncovers a leather satchel containing two seemingly unrelated items: a sepia photograph of an arresting-looking woman in Victorian clothing, and an artist's sketchbook containing the drawing of a twin-gabled house on the bend of a river.

Why does Birchwood Manor feel so familiar to Elodie? And who is the beautiful woman in the photograph? Will she ever give up her secrets?

Told by multiple voices across time, The Clockmaker's Daughter is a story of murder, mystery, and thievery, of art, love, and loss. And flowing through its pages like a river is the voice of a woman who stands outside time, whose name has been forgotten by history, but who has watched it all unfold: Birdie Bell, the clockmaker's daughter.

Title: Penned
Author: Eileen Brady
Series: #4 in the Kate Turner DVM cozy series set in upstate New York.
243 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books.

Synopsis: "Dr. Kate Turner, DVM, is seven months into her one-year contract to cover for a Hudson Valley vet taking a year-long world cruise. She's getting used to the hospital and house-call workload but not to the sometimes dangerous, if not deadly, critters - animal and human - she meets.

Eighty-something-year-old Gloria LaGuardia has been installed at an assisted living center by her niece. They bump into Kate at the Oak Falls annual Halloween street bash. And while Gloria's conversation indicates some mental confusion - she asks a couple dressed as rabbits if they are real or not - she's still sharp. And she says, "Someone evil is here. I saw him."

Saw who? Will this chance meeting draw Kate into the path of Carl Wolf, a notorious fugitive twenty-one years on the FBI's Most Wanted List? Is Wolf hiding in plain sight in or around Oak Falls?

When Gloria, once an artist endowed with a sharp eye, is murdered, Kate doesn't know what to think. But author Tucker Weinstein approaches her at Gloria's funeral and indicates he believes the old woman. Further, he's devoting a chapter in his book to Carl Wolf.

The FBI doesn't appear interested. Gloria's family just wants to move on. But publicity-hungry Tucker mentions Kate in a newspaper interview that goes viral. She's overloaded with new clients like Billy, a Nubian stud goat living penned up with alpaca, llamas, and more goats on a local farm producing milk, wool, and cheese, and a grumpy Chihuahua dressed up like a Thanksgiving turkey. Yet she senses someone is now following her. An undercover FBI agent? Carl Wolf on the prowl?

Determined not to be a victim, Kate digs deep into the arson/murder Wolf committed long ago. Are the clues to unmasking him hidden in the past, or closer than she thinks?"

Title: Wrecked
Author: Joe Ide
Series: #3 IQ P.I. mystery set in Los Angeles
352 pages

Synopsis: "Isaiah Quintabe--IQ for short--has never been more successful, or felt more alone. A series of high-profile wins in his hometown of East Long Beach has made him so notorious that he can hardly go to the corner store without being recognized. Dodson, once his sidekick, is now his full-fledged partner, hell-bent on giving IQ's PI business some real legitimacy: a Facebook page, and IQ's promise to stop accepting Christmas sweaters and carpet cleanings in exchange for PI services.

So when a young painter approaches IQ for help tracking down her missing mother, it's not just the case Isaiah's looking for, but the human connection. And when his new confidant turns out to be connected to a dangerous paramilitary operation, IQ falls victim to a threat even a genius can't see coming.

Waiting for Isaiah around every corner is Seb, the Oxford-educated African gangster who was responsible for the death of his brother, Marcus. Only, this time, Isaiah's not alone. Joined by a new love interest and his familiar band of accomplices, IQ is back--and the adventures are better than ever."

=== October 16 ===

Title: The Darkness
Series: #1 in the Hulda Hermannsdóttir police procedural series set in Iceland.
336 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books.

Synopsis: "The body of a young Russian woman washes up on an Icelandic shore. After a cursory investigation, the death is declared a suicide and the case is quietly closed.
Over a year later Detective Inspector Hulda Hermannsdóttir of the Reykjavík police is forced into early retirement at 64. She dreads the loneliness and the memories of her dark past that threaten to come back to haunt her. But before she leaves she is given two weeks to solve a single cold case of her choice. She knows which one: the Russian woman whose hope for asylum ended on the dark, cold shore of an unfamiliar country. Soon Hulda discovers that another young woman vanished at the same time and that no one is telling her the whole story. Even her colleagues in the police seem determined to put the brakes on her investigation. Meanwhile, the clock is ticking.

Hulda will find the killer, even if it means putting her own life in danger."

Title: The Craftsman
Author: Sharon Bolton
Standalone police procedural set in England.
432 pages

Synopsis: "Florence Lovelady's career was made when she convicted coffin-maker Larry Grassbrook of a series of child murders 30 years ago in a small village in Lancashire. Like something out of a nightmare, the victims were buried alive. Florence was able to solve the mystery and get a confession out of Larry before more children were murdered., and he spent the rest of his life in prison.

But now, decades later, he's dead, and events from the past start to repeat themselves. Is someone copying the original murders? Or did she get it wrong all those years ago? When her own son goes missing under similar circumstances, the case not only gets reopened... it gets personal.

In master of suspense Sharon Bolton's latest thriller, readers will find a page-turner to confirm their deepest fears and the only protagonist who can face them."

=== October 22 ===

Title: A Picture of Murder
Author: T.E. Kinsey
Series: #4 in the Lady Hardcastle historical series set in England.
320 pages

Synopsis: "Late October 1909, and the season of ghouls and things that go bump in the night has descended on the village of Littleton Cotterell.

Lady Hardcastle and her trusted lady’s maid, Florence, find themselves hosting a colourful cast of actors whose spooky moving picture, The Witch’s Downfall, is being shown to mark Halloween. But things take a macabre turn when the first night’s screening ends with a mysterious murder, and the second night with another…One by one the actors turn up dead in ways that eerily echo their film.

With the police left scratching their heads, Lady Hardcastle calls upon her amateur sleuthing skills to launch an investigation, with Flo’s able assistance. Surrounded by suspects both human and supernatural, Lady Hardcastle must use a little trickery of her own to unmask the murderer."

=== October 23 ===

Title: Go to My Grave
Standalone Gothic thriller set in Scotland.
304 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books.

Synopsis: "Donna Weaver has put everything she has into restoring The Breakers, an old bed and breakfast on a remote stretch of beach in Galloway. Now it sits waiting—freshly painted, richly furnished, filled with flowers—for the first guests to arrive.

But Donna's guests, a contentious group of estranged cousins, soon realize that they’ve been here before, years ago. Decades have passed, but that night still haunts them: a sixteenth birthday party that started with peach schnapps and ended with a girl walking into the sea.

Each of them had made a vow of silence: 'lock it in a box, stitch my lips, and go to my grave.'

But now someone has broken the pact. Amid the home-baked scones and lavish rooms, someone is playing games, locking boxes, stitching lips. And before the weekend is over, at least one of them will go to their grave."

=== October 30 ===

Title: Murder by the Book
Series: #1 in the Beyond the Page Bookstore cozy series set in New England.
304 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books.

Synopsis: "Addie left some painful memories behind in the big city, including the unsolved murder of her fiancé and her father’s fatal car accident. After an unexpected inheritance from a great aunt, she’s moved to a small New England town founded by her ancestors back in colonial times—and living in spacious Greyborne Manor, on a hilltop overlooking the harbor. Best of all, her aunt also left her countless first editions and other treasures—providing an inventory to start her own store.

But there’s trouble from day one, and not just from the grumpy woman who runs the bakery next door. A car nearly runs Addie down. Someone steals a copy of Alice in Wonderland. Then, Addie’s friend Serena, who owns a nearby tea shop, is arrested—for killing another local merchant. The police seem pretty sure they’ve got the story in hand, but Addie’s not going to let them close the book on this case without a fight . . .

Title: Thread Herrings
Author: Lea Wait
Series: #7 in the Mainely Needlepoint cozy series set in Maine.
304 pages

*Upcoming review on Kittling: Books.

Synopsis: "Tagging along to an estate sale with her fellow Needlepointer, antiques shop owner Sarah Byrne, Angie Curtis impulsively bids on a tattered embroidery of a coat of arms. When she gets her prize back home to Haven Harbor, she discovers a document from 1757 behind the framed needlework—a claim for a child from a foundling hospital. Intrigued, Angie is determined to find the common thread between the child and the coat of arms.

Accepting her reporter friend Clem Walker's invitation to talk about her find on the local TV news, Angie makes an appeal to anyone who might have information. Instead, both women receive death threats. When Clem is found shot to death in a parking lot, Angie fears her own life may be in jeopardy. She has to unravel this historical mystery—or she may be the next one going, going . . . gone . . .

Title: Dark Sacred Night
Series: #2 in the Renée Ballard police procedural series set in Los Angeles.
448 pages

Synopsis: "Detective Renée Ballard is working the night beat--known in LAPD slang as "the late show"--and returns to Hollywood Station in the early hours to find a stranger rifling through old file cabinets. The intruder is retired detective Harry Bosch, working a cold case that has gotten under his skin.

Ballard can't let him go through department records, but when he leaves, she looks into the case herself and feels a deep tug of empathy and anger. She has never been the kind of cop who leaves the job behind at the end of her shift--and she wants in.

The murder, unsolved, was of fifteen-year-old Daisy Clayton, a runaway on the streets of Hollywood who was brutally killed, her body left in a dumpster like so much trash. Now Ballard joins forces with Bosch to find out what happened to Daisy and to finally bring her killer to justice. Along the way, the two detectives forge a fragile trust, but this new partnership is put to the test when the case takes an unexpected and dangerous turn."

October is another of those "abundance of riches" months, isn't it? There are so many books I'm looking forward to reading that it's impossible for me to choose one clear-cut winner. Let's just say... outside the U.S., I'll pick Ragnar Jónasson's The Darkness. Inside the U.S., it's got to be Michael Connelly's Dark Sacred Night, and as for an author I've never read before, my choice is Laurie Loewenstein's Death of a Rainmaker. I would've chosen this book anyway, but when Lesa Holstine sits down next to you at a conference and gives a glowing recommendation of it, I tend to sit up and take notice!

What about you? Did I manage to choose any titles that made you sit up and take notice? Which ones? Inquiring minds would love to know!


  1. Looks like a great month coming up, Cathy! Bolton, McPherson, Connelly...yes, plenty of excellent reasons to pull out my credit card... ;-)

  2. Oh, so many wonderful books! My eye was immediately caught by Death of a Rainmaker - thanks so much for pointing that one out! I love books set in Oklahoma (big fan of Donis Casey) and the time period is one my mother's family was part of in that area. And yes, I'm going to read the new Connelly book and also Catriona McPherson's new one. Our mystery group is reading the first one by Joe Ide, IQ, for November and so that series is on my list. And more. Sounds like we will be having a good winter of reading, right? Yay!!

  3. Definitely for the Connelly. Perhaps a few others, as the one set in Oklahoma and perhaps the book set in Wyoming. (Am trying to read a book set in each state, continuing a goal set by the late Bernadette Bean, blogger at Reactions to Reading, which I still miss.)

    I've also seen that "The Witch Elm" by Tana French will be out in October, a stand-alone. Grisham has a new book out, "The Reckoning."
    Barbara Kingsolver has a new book out, "Unsheltered."

    I'm on overload from the book ideas.

    And I want to seriously recommend the TV series, "Bosch," which is an original series at Amazon Prime. I have done nothing for a week, but binge-watch that fantastic show. Titus Welliver is Bosch. It is exciting and wonderfully cast.

    One can see how complex Bosch is because since the show is visual, the viewer sees emotions on his face: sadness, anger, resignation, aggravation. One also hears his tone of voice.

    The dialogue is great, including the banter between Bosch and his partner, Jerry Edgar, and the witty dialogue in the police station.

    Really great series. But be warned: Once one starts watching, the viewer can't stop. I binge-watched for a week until I saw all 40 episodes.

    And Michael Connelly is involved in all of the production and probably, the writing. One can see his hand in this.

    1. You don't have to tell me how good "Bosch" is!

  4. Such a lovely list and you have done the hard work for us with the compilation.

    1. I hope you managed to find a book or two that you want to read, Mystica!

  5. Oh, you've binge-watched Bosch? I hadn't noticed that at this blog, unless I missed it.

    1. I've binge-watched other programs, but not Bosch. That's a program Denis really enjoys, too, so we watch it at his pace.

  6. IQ! I'm excited to see Wrecked on this list, because I enjoyed the first 2 books of the series so much (it's always a good sign when a new author avoids the sophomore slump).

    I already knew about Connelly's book - and can hardly wait. The stand-alone from Bolton also sounds right up my alley - thanks!

    1. You're welcome! And of you ever get a chance to meet Joe Ide, do it. He's very informative and has a wonderful sense of humor.

  7. Thanks so much for including me in your list of October releases. More importantly, thanks for sharing fall reads to add to my towering bedside stack! The Clock-Maker's Daughter sounds especially enticing.

    1. We'd better hope those stacks never topple over! Thanks so much for stopping by, Laurie-- I'm really looking forward to reading your book when it comes out.


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