The mystery genre is always diverse, but this month authors released books that fell all across the spectrum. There were stories of mysterious deaths, dead bodies surprising people in the most unexpected locales and psychological thrillers that will have you double checking the locks on your doors. This month also saw the release of a book that won the rare honor of an RT Top Pick Gold! which was awarded to Gillian Flynn’s latest. And readers welcomed debut author Elizabeth Haynes with open arms. Plus we take a look at several must-read cozies in this month’s mystery roundup!
The publishers at Hard Case Crime, the line of pulp stories released by Titan Books, has been carefully curating an impressive line-up of authors from those who were popular 'back in the day' like David Goodis and Erle Stankley Gardner, to modern authors like Christa Faust and Max Allan Collins. And we’ve just learned that another famed author will be joining their ranks: Stephen King.
The immensely popular author will release the new novel Joyland with the imprint, which he worked with when he released The Colorado Kid back in 2005. (King fans and science fiction enthusiast will recognize this title as the one that inspired Syfy Network’s popular television series Haven.) Knowing that Hard Case Crime has already been the home of a successful King story, we are even more excited to be getting an all-new novel from the talented writer.
Dinosaurs, super viruses and killer primates, oh my … Michael Crichton, that is! Nine of this prolific author’s chilling tales are now available as e-reads for the first time. The famous author and creator passed away in 2008; however, as his stories were techno thrillers and science-y suspenses, we bet that enjoying them on our e-readers will feel absolutely fitting.
If you’ve never tried a Crichton story, now’s the perfect time to get a taste for these haunting tales. RT BOOK REVIEWS Features Editor Mala raves about the authors work saying, “There’s no denying that Crichton was ahead of the game for thrillers. He wrote edge-of-your-seat, science-based adventures that always kept me turning pages!” Intrigued readers should head to their favorite online bookseller to get a piece of all this terrifying reading action.
Bestselling mystery author Sue Grafton is best known for her Kinsey Milhone novels (also affectionately called the alphabet mysteries for their clever titles). The series is 22 books in and still going strong. The latest book in the series, 2011's V is for Vengeance, was rated an RT Top Pick! In today's interview with RT's Stephanie, Grafton shares her views on the psychology of violence, talks about the narrative directions she's taken with her stories and the ways that she keeps the series fresh. (One of these ways is that she works hard to capture Kinsey "in the moment" and not think too far ahead, in fact she doesn't even know what the title for her W mystery will be!) Plus, find out what the author thinks she'll do after she wraps up Kinsey's final alphabet adventure!
Panel moderator and RT Editor Stephanie Klose with authors Gregg Hurwitz, Kevin O'Brien and James Rollins
Have you ever wondered what it was like to crawl inside the dark and twisted mind of a mystery and thriller author? These authors craft terrifying stories complete with grisly murders, horrific kidnappings and a slew of truly desperate characters. Today RT convention attendees got a chance to find out exactly what it’s like to be Gregg Hurwitz, Kevin O’Brien and James Rollins. These authors chatted about one of their all-time favorite scary authors, how they were inspired to write, and of course — what’s coming next!
Some of our favorite moments of the event took place as the authors were chatting together and bonding over their shared love of Hitchcock. (And it’s no surprise that the conversation moved at a fast and furious pace, considering the quick minds of all three authors.)
Prepare to be entranced by this week’s Dish story, the multifaceted mystery from M.J. Rose, The Book of Lost Fragrances. This spellbinding book features Jac, a struggling heroine desperately holding onto her sanity as her hallucinations of other people's lives take her back in time. However, when Jac's brother becomes entangled in a scheme to recreate an ancient memory aid which could spark a foreign revolution, it has never been more important for Jac to hold onto her sense of the here and now. But what will she do when it turns out she’s been remembering her own past lives?
Morgan: We are going to have an especially hard time getting through the description this novel. It is so layered, like a mystery grounded in some harsh realities, shrouded in mysticism.
Whitney: But despite the different narratives that span centuries and the globe-trotting from New York to Paris and even China, it all comes back to the main protagonist Jac L’Etoile.
Morgan: Jac’s a scholar turned TV host who has dedicated her life to uncovering myths.
When I read that there was going to be a graphic novel adaptation of Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, my eyes rolled so hard I thought they were going to fall out of my head. No more, I thought. The Dragon Tattoo wave has crashed, and I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that Stieg Larsson is turning in his grave, wishing that he were able to enjoy the financial benefits of his internationally successful Millennium trilogy.
RT Managing Editor Liz French (left) with author Alison Gaylin
Allow me to gloat just a little bit here. I love living in New York! Well, at least this week I do. I went to see March Seal of Excellence winner Alison Gaylin sign and read from her bestselling suspense novel, And She Was, Tuesday at NYC’s Mysterious Bookshop, and fell in love with the author's new heroine all over again.
Brenna Spector has some weird neurological condition, which Alison actually pronounced several times last night but I can’t wrap my mind around. I’m going to call it thingamajig syndrome. Here’s the gist: Brenna Spector remembers EVERYTHING, all five senses engaged, every damn detail. Of every day in her life since her sister disappeared one day when Brenna was 11. Yeah. Heavy! The good memories, the bad memories ... why her marriage broke up, the pain of childbirth, what kind of tie her therapist was wearing in 1985 ... so, perfect syndrome for a PI to have, right?
We all know that when it comes to writing mysteries, it’s all about the details. And sometimes, there is simply no substitution for research that's done by asking a professional. Today, thriller author Andrew Peterson shares a look into the hearts and minds of ATF agents — and talks about what it was like to be attacked by one of their dogs (don’t worry, he volunteered for it!) during the 2011 RT Booklovers Convention. Then, find out how you can get your questions answered by — and an up close look at — these fearless agents.
Looking for some laughs along with a fun mystery? Then you will definitely want to check out Deborah Coonts' Lucky O'Toole series. Today the author sits down with RT's Morgan to talk about her sleuthing heroine. Get an insider's look at Lucky's unusual upbringing and find out how it made her into a problem solver extraordinaire. Plus find out about Lucky's unusual love interest and what makes Las Vegas this author's favorite city, all before you enter for a chance to win her latest mystery, So Damn Lucky.