Vicki J Kondelik
Posts tagged with mystery
October 28, 2022 •
In this creepy novel of suspense set in 1920s Paris, American private investigator Harris Stuyvesant searches for a young woman, an artists' model, who has gone missing. His search takes him to a theater producing realistic horror plays and the studio of an artist who creates art objects out of human bones. He also encounters many famous people from the literary and artistic world of Paris at the time, including Hemingway, Picasso, Cole Porter, and the surrealist artist Man Ray, who plays an important role in the plot. Not for the squeamish, but a perfect Halloween read!
October 11, 2022 •
Magpie Murders is a clever mystery within a mystery. It begins with Susan Ryeland, an editor for a London publishing house, reading the last manuscript by a recently deceased mystery author. Then you read the manuscript along with her: a classic English village mystery in the style of Agatha Christie. Frustratingly, it cuts off just before the solution is revealed, and the rest of the book returns to the present day as Susan searches for the missing chapters. Soon enough you learn that the author of the manuscript was murdered, and Susan has to find the real-life murderer as well as the pages that will reveal the murderer in the fictional world.
September 2, 2022 •
In this mystery, one of a series set in Gilded Age New York, Prudence MacKenzie, a judge's daughter turned detective, and Geoffrey Hunter, a former Pinkerton agent, search for two missing children--a brother and sister--in the streets of New York. They learn that the missing girl has been sold into prostitution, and, with the help of historical figures such as Jacob Riis and Nellie Bly, attempt to rescue the children. The book paints a detailed portrait of life in New York in the 1890s, from the parlors of the wealthy to the sordid streets and alleyways of the tenements.
March 11, 2022 •
Arsenic and Adobo is the first in a new mystery series featuring a Filipino American heroine, Lila Macapagal, who works in her family's restaurant. When her ex-boyfriend dies after eating a dessert in the restaurant, Lila is accused of the crime, and she has to find the real killer in order to clear her name and save the restaurant. The book's greatest strengths are the characters and the descriptions of Filipino food.
January 12, 2022 •
In this mystery set in Brighton, England, in 1965, private detective Emma Holmes investigates the murder of a theatrical impresario. His wife, a former music hall star, is accused of killing him. To prove her innocence, she hires Emma and her partner in the firm, Samantha "Sam" Collins, to solve the crime. Emma is also the wife of the police superintendent, Edgar Stephens, and they decide to work together, along with a young police officer, Meg Connolly. Griffiths writes vividly about the world of theater, film, and television in England in the 1960s, in this entertaining mystery.
August 9, 2021 •
In this mystery novel set in a seaside town in England, Harbinder Kaur, a gay Sikh police detective, investigates the murder of a ninety-year-old woman who had served as a "murder consultant" to mystery authors: helping them come up with ways to murder people. As Harbinder and three friends of the victim try to solve the crime, Harbinder discovers the victim may have been involved in espionage in Russia. Did someone take revenge? The plot takes many twists and turns. Griffiths also paints a vivid portrait of the world of crime fiction and the publishing industry. Harbinder is a strong character who faces prejudice in the police and elsewhere.
June 15, 2021 •
The Satapur Moonstone is a mystery featuring Perveen Mistry, a female lawyer in 1920s India. Perveen travels through the jungle to the princely state of Satapur to settle a dispute between the mother and grandmother of the ten-year-old maharaja over the boy's education. While there, she discovers a web of intrigue. The maharaja's mother thinks that someone is trying to poison her son, and that his older brother's death was no accident. Perveen confirms her suspicions, and realizes the boy is in danger. Will she be able to save him in time?
May 11, 2021 •
Murder in Old Bombay is the first in a new mystery series by Nev March, set in colonial India in 1892. The main character, Captain Jim Agnihotri, is a wounded Anglo-Indian army officer who learns about the murder of two women from a prominent family while he is recovering in the hospital and reading the newspapers. After leaving the hospital, Jim uses the techniques of his hero, Sherlock Holmes, to help the family find the murderer. Along the way, he falls in love with the daughter of the family, even though their marriage is forbidden because of their differences in race and caste. Jim's investigation takes him all over India, and you learn many details about life in India in the late 19th century.
April 23, 2021 •
One Fatal Flaw is a mystery/courtroom drama set in 1910 London, featuring young lawyer Daniel Pitt and his friend, forensic scientist Miriam fford Croft. Daniel defends a young man accused of arson and murder, and wins his case based on the expert testimony of Miriam's former teacher, Saltram. But when his client is murdered in the same way as the previous victim, Daniel realizes his expert witness was wrong, and this leads him to reopen the 20-year-old case that made Saltram's reputation. In doing so, he gains a powerful enemy.
November 23, 2020 •
The Long Call is an outstanding mystery by Ann Cleeves, best known for the Shetland and Vera series. This is the beginning of a new series, featuring Matthew Venn, a gay police officer in the seaside resort area of North Devon, England. Matthew lives with his husband, Jonathan, who runs the community center. He has left the strict evangelical Christian community in which he grew up. As he is standing outside the church during his father's funeral, Matthew receives a call about a dead body on the beach. It turns out the dead man was a cook at the community center, and Jonathan may be a suspect.