Sunday, September 15, 2013


That's what Pete Mock says in his mystery newsletter from McIntyre's in Fearrington Village (Pittsboro NC). He makes a good case, too. Pete and I have shared mystery opinions for many years now. We don't always agree, but we do always respect! Take a look and see what you think. Let me know.

Happy reading.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

A Skeleton in the Attic by Leigh Perry

Many families have a skeleton in their closet. You know, the family member who was a thief, an alcoholic, a rapist, or a schizophrenic. People hide them so that their own good reputation isn't tarnished by admitting that we all have a dark side. Georgia Thackery's family is one who has a skeleton, not in their closet, but in the attic, where he enjoys reading and other pursuits usually reserved for the living. This family has given him a name and keeps him hidden for his own sake. Sid, walks and talks, makes bad jokes that aren't funny, but generally he is a good guy. Oh, yeah, they know he's a he. What they don't know is who he was before he dead. 

Georgia is an adjunct professor at the same college where her parents teach. They are on sabbatical and Georgia has moved back home for awhile. She is a single mom with a daughter, Madison, a bright 14-year old. They are happy to live here and reconnect with Georgia's sister. Georgia has known Sid almost her whole life and he is actually her best friend. Well, Sid talks Georgia into attending an anime convention, disguised as......what else?.......a skeleton !  Don't know what an anime is? The book will explain. 

While at the convention, Sid sees a woman who triggers vague memories of his past, and he is determined to find out who he is and how he died. He needs Georgia's help and their adventures are worth discovering. Needless to say, there's a killer on the loose, and the
mystery leads Sid and Geogia on a chase that could be lethal. Luckily, Sid has abilities as well as a sterling character that leads to an ending that isn't easily figured.
This is a fun read and before you go making assumptions about skeletons that walk and talk—think about it !!
—Dian Esterly

FTC Disclosure: This book was provided by the publisher.

Editor's secret: Leigh Perry is a pseudonym for my good friend and North Carolina native Toni L. P. Kelner. As Dian indicates, she's still got her funny (dare I say it?) bone!

Keep No Secrets by Julie Compton (Fresh Fork Publishing)

If you liked Jillian Flynn's Gone Girl, read until 4AM to finish it, Keep No Secrets is its equal. Here's the portrait of a modern marriage caught in the balance of careers, demands of raising children, and just keeping your head when your world comes apart. Keep No Secrets is a shell game of who is the hero, whois the villain. Compton's skill as a writer in her third novel keeps the reader's sympathies on a seesaw. Who is telling what lies? Who is keeping the most and biggest and worst secret of all?   

A fantastic read!

--Ruth Moose
FTC Disiclaimer: This book was provided by the publisher.

Ruth Moose won the St. Martin-Minotaur-Malice Domestic Award for Best First Novel in May. Her debut mystery, Doin' It at the Dixie Dew will hit shelves next spring from Minotaur.

Monday, September 02, 2013

Noah’s Rainy Day by Sandra Brannan (Greenleaf BookGroup)

This is the fourth book in the Liv Bergen Mystery series. The suspense begins on page one with the prologue and continues throughout the book.

Liv Bergen has finally become an FBI Special Agent entrusted with the handling and training of the bloodhound, Beulah. Liv is back home in Colorado for Christmas with her family. Noah, Liv’s 12-year-old nephew, has cerebral palsy. He cannot speak or walk, and has very limited eye site and use of his arms. Noah’s brain functions very well, in fact better than some of us. His only means of communication is with smiles for “yes” and frowns for “no”. He worships his Aunt Liv “Boots” Bergan and wants to be a spy like her. Liv gives him a secret gift of a “spy pin” that records sound.

Liv and Beulah’s Christmas visit is interrupted when five-year-old Max is kidnapped from the Denver airport. Working with veteran agent Street Pierce, enigmatic agent and lover Jack Linwood they fear the worst when no ransom demands are made. They are on a time clock to find the boy before it is too late.

Meanwhile, Noah, housebound, spends a lot of time looking out his special window to the world—a floor to ceiling window installed by his father. Noah’s active mind and curiosity notices everything that happens in his small world. When he sees a small child watching him from his neighbor’s window he has a mystery to solve and a spy pin to use. Noah’s “investigation” may lead down a very dark path for him and his family.

If the first three books in the series are as good as this one, I have some serious reading to do! As with all good series, I did not have any problems following the story and character relationships. 

—Helen Jones

FTC Disclaimer: This book was provided by the publisher.