Clara Maynard's blog

Angel's Flight

One reviewer wrote that Angels Flight was not Connelly’s best, but I still found it interesting. In Angel’s Flight, Howard Elias, an African American lawyer fond of suing the LAPD, is found murdered on the Angel's Flight train. This is set shortly after the Rodney King riots and Harry has to deal with department politics and racial tension as he seeks to solve the crime. He’s also trying to give up smoking and his wife has been out gambling again. Bosch breaks all the rules to find the killer as always. I enjoy the hard boiled detective stories that Connelly writes.

copy of Angels Flight

 

Death of the Demon

I’ve been reading Anne Holt since the first English translation of her work, 1222, appeared in the US a few years ago. Now I can’t wait for each book to come out! If you’re starting the series in order, start with Blind Goddess.  The succeeding books are Blessed Are Those Who Thirst, and Death of the Demon. The heroine is lesbian Oslo police officer Hanne Wilhelmsen. In Death of The Demon she has been promoted to police inspector and she is dealing with learning how to be a boss. Her newest case is the murder of a foster home supervisor, a woman who seems to have no enemies!  Along with working on the case, she has to deal with issues at home with her partner who doesn’t understand why Hanne is unwilling to come out of the closet. The mystery kept me guessing and the characters are richly drawn. 

Waiting for W?

Well, I just finished reading W is for Wasted by Sue Grafton. Like many folks I’ve been reading the Kinsey Millhone series since the beginning. However, there is a long wait list for W is for Wasted. If you haven’t started the series, you can start by reading A is for Alibi. If you’re a fan, and you’re waiting to get your copy of W, you can read some series that also feature tough, independent and witty female detectives. Here are some suggestions:


Kate Brannigan
mysteries by Val McDermid


Rachel Alexander and Dash
mysteries by Carol Lea


Anna Lee mysteries
by Liza Cody


Thea Kozak mysteries by Kate Flora


V.I. Warshawski
mysteries by Sara Paretsky


Give one or more of these a try!

The Silent Girl

I took a road trip recently and listened to The Silent Girl on the way. On a rooftop, Boston PD Det. Jane Rizzoli finds a woman’s body with a slit throat and a severed hand. Upon investigation, the unknown woman’s death seems to be related to a 19 year old Chinatown murder/suicide. Nineteen years ago a cook, Wu Weimin supposedly shot his coworker, three customers, and himself in the Red Phoenix restaurant.  Rizzoli , with the help of a new associate, explores the culture and history of Chinatown to find out what really happened.  I enjoyed this entry in the Rizzoli and Isles series.  The mystery is a bit predictable but the characters are fun.

The Silent Girl                  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Last Coyote

Harry Bosch lost his temper and hit his boss, so now he’s suspended and forced to attend mandatory therapy sessions with the department shrink. He’s at a low place in his life as his girlfriend left and he’s missing her. His house has been condemned after the last L.A. earthquake but he is determined to fix it up and continue living in it. There’s a coyote hanging around his house, and he thinks it may be The Last Coyote in the area. Harry sometimes feels as though he too is the last of his kind, a cop who cares about everyone’s murder. He decides to investigate the cold case that led to him becoming a cop: the murder of his mother, a L.A. call girl. He’s always felt that this case got swept under the rug. The writing as always is top notch. Available in e-book and regular book format.

cover of The Last Coyote

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The White Lioness

In The White Lioness, Kurt Wallender, Swedish police inspector, is called to investigate the murder of a woman real estate agent. She has no enemies and seems to have been in the wrong place at the wrong time.  The story alternates between Kurt’s viewpoint as he tries to solve the murder and the viewpoint of the people involved in the murder. The story was written in 1993 and the plot involves the civil struggles in apartheid South Africa. I enjoyed this story more than the previous one is this series.  I think part of this was Mankell’s depiction of the South African characters and their society. It made me want to read more about Nelson Mandela and this time in history. I also enjoy this series because Kurt Wallender is a troubled, believable hero and I enjoy rooting for him.

cover of The White Lioness

 

The Concrete Blonde

I’ve been working my way through Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch series and the latest that I’ve read was The Concrete Blonde. Harry’s in trouble when the widow of The Dollmaker, a serial killer, accuses him of shooting the wrong man and sues him. New evidence surfaces when a blonde woman’s body is found in the concrete under a burned out building. Is she a new Dollmaker victim? Did Harry shoot the wrong suspect? He begins to have doubts himself. And he’s in the middle of a budding relationship and the case begins to affect that. Connelly is an excellent writer and there are lots of plot twists to keep you interested. 

cover of The Concrete Blonde

 

Sandrine's Case

This title caught by attention because of the cover art initially. The picture is a tasteful painting of a nude woman preparing for bed. Then I realized it was by Thomas H Cook, who has won many awards for his mystery novels. In Sandrine’s Case, Sandrine, a professor at Coburn College, has died, apparently from suicide. But her husband, Sam, has been arrested and is being tried for her murder. Through Sam’s memories, we find that Sandrine was a fascinating, brilliant and passionate woman. Over the years, the couple’s relationship had become troubled and she had recently been diagnosed with a terrible illnesses.  At times we’re not sure whether he killed her or not. Sam’s perception of his wife is changed by the revelations that come to light during the trial. The climax to this most satisfying read is enlightening and surprising. 

cover of Sandrine's Case

 

Dissolution

Dissolution is set in 16th century England when Henry VIII had broken with the church in Rome and Cromwell was campaigning to close all of the monasteries. When one of Cromwell’s men is killed at a remote monastery he sends Matthew Shardlake, a humpbacked lawyer, to solve the murder. In addition to trying to solve the mystery, Matthew must deal with increasing doubt about Cromwell’s motives and methods. Readers who like Ellis Peter’s mysteries will like this as it is rich in period detail. And the author does keep you guessing; at least he kept me guessing!  

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The Expats

Kate Moore has a dream life. She’s living a luxury life in Luxembourg. However, Kate is a former CIA agent and her past is filled with dark secrets. Her husband, Dexter, does not know. Once in Europe, Dexter becomes secretive also, working for a banking client that he cannot name. Another American couple becomes their friends, but Kate soon realizes that they are not what they seem. Is her past catching up to her? Are her husband and children in danger? The Expats was very entertaining, and hard to put down, especially when twists and turns start to happen in the plot. 

cover of The Expats

 

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