October 22, 2014

‘The Lost Women of Lost Lake’ by Ellen Hart

Posted on June 24, 2014 by in Mystery, Reviews

The Lost Women of Lost Lake (Bywater Books) by Ellen Hart takes readers to the lovely lake country of northern Minnesota. Hart’s famous characters Jane Lawless and Cordelia Thorn have gone to a high end resort at Lost Lake to help out two old friends, Tessa and Jill. Tessa and Jill run the resort, and Tessa, a published playwright, directs the local community theatre group. Now, just days before opening night, Tessa has fallen and broken her ankle. This is obviously time for renowned theatre director Cordelia to come to Tessa’s rescue.  (more…)

‘The Death of Lucy Kyte’ by Nicola Upson

Posted on June 8, 2014 by in Mystery, Reviews

Nicola Upson’s series of mysteries featuring Josephine Tey are inherently multilayered: Tey was one pseudonym of real life novelist and playwright Elizabeth Mackintosh (1896-1952), now fully realized as a character in her own right. With The Death of Lucy Kyte, a true crime from the mid-1800s adds another layer to the more contemporary 1930s whodunit, memory playing off artifice and truth off fiction, leading to a surprising emotional payoff at the end. This is the fifth book in the series, and Upson deserves credit for making the book readily accessible to this first-time reader while dangling tidbits of back story that left me curious for more. (more…)

The Return of Kate Delafield

Posted on March 19, 2014 by in Mystery, Opinion

Some old friends you only see occasionally, but when you do, you realize how much you have missed them. I feel that way about Kate Delafield. It’s been years since I’ve seen her (eight, to be exact), but when I ran into her again in Katherine Forrest’s new novel, High Desert, I was very glad to see her. (more…)

‘Family Issue’ by Nat Burns

Posted on March 6, 2014 by in Mystery, Romance

Family Issue (Bella Books) is set in southern Louisiana, near the Gulf of Mexico. Denni Hope, who grew up near Fortune Farm, has been asked by her ex-girlfriend, Patty Price, to investigate a rash of violence and vandalism which is plaguing the farm. Denni is a trained insurance investigator, and is quite willing to use her skills to help Patty. She is not sure, however, how she’ll feel about seeing Patty with Yolanda Elliott, the woman Patty left her for. (more…)

‘Turning on the Tide’ by Jenna Rae

Posted on December 29, 2013 by in Mystery, Reviews

Turning on the Tide (Bella) opens by getting right to the point as we get a glimpse into the mind of a killer. Whether or not the perpetrator is sane remains to be seen. The identity of this mad person is not revealed, not at first. Slowly, the story unfolds to include a name, a face and a purpose, albeit a very misguided one. Enough of the killer’s mind and single-mindedness is exposed, however, to send shivers up and down the spine. As the first chapter ends, the killer remains anonymous and, as the second chapter begins, the story shifts to the main characters, Del and Lola. (more…)

‘Injustice: Book One of the Nemesis Series’ by K. A. Kron and Brenda L. Leffler

Posted on December 25, 2013 by in Mystery, Reviews

Injustice (Lethe) is set in Denver. It’s heroine, Riley Connors, has some kind of background, (unstated as to what, exactly) with the US military. Her former job has given her a variety of tricky skills and mentors. She is currently a law student, with a paying job as a waitress. Within the first few pages of the book, Riley has saved a fellow law student from an attack and possible rape. Ali Garcia, who Riley rescued, is bright, attractive, and makes it a point to find a seat in class near Riley.  (more…)

‘Pale Wings Protecting’ by Lesley Davis

Posted on December 10, 2013 by in Mystery, Speculative

Detective Daryl Chandler has a gift even she finds hard to explain. She has the uncanny ability to find missing children. When cases begun to surface of children being stolen from their mothers, Daryl is convinced that they are being given to well-off adoptive lesbian couples and she enlists the help of an old friend in the Deviant Data Unit in New York. The old friend partners her with Agent Blythe Kent to try to crack the case. Together Daryl and Blythe move into the affluent community populated by same-sex couples under the guise that they are a loving couple seeking to adopt a child to complete their family. (more…)

‘Web of Obsessions’ by Diane Wood

Posted on November 26, 2013 by in Mystery, Romance

Jordan MacKenzie is a social worker who has recently fled a job at a medium security women’s prison to a position in a maximum security facility to get away from a relationship-gone-bad with a coworker. When she starts her new job, she has no idea of the Web of Obsessions in which she will become unwittingly entangled. Meeting Danielle Veillard, assistant superintendent of operations, proves to be a bright light in a rather dismal atmosphere, and Jordan is immediately taken with Danielle’s professionalism, beauty and friendliness as Danielle extends a warm welcome and the two women begin a tentative working relationship. But as the association continues, each woman is forced to acknowledge an attraction that their individual struggles cannot keep at bay. (more…)

‘Taken By The Wind’ by Ellen Hart

Posted on September 17, 2013 by in Mystery, Reviews

Ellen Hart is a Minnesota based author who has written twenty previous mysteries featuring Jane Lawless and her best friend, Cordelia Thorn. Hart writes in the gay mystery genre, however she has successfully crossed over to be popular with straight readers as well. (more…)

‘First Down’ by JJ Greene

Posted on September 5, 2013 by in Mystery, Romance

Detective Rynn Callahan is stymied by the rather gruesome murder of a man in her district. The crime scene is devoid of clues and leads are non-existent, making the detective bewildered and frustrated. She’s been working alone since her partner was injured in the line of duty, and she’s not thrilled when her superior assigns her a new partner. The guy’s not very forthcoming about his past and Rynn’s not sure what to make of him. However, all that doesn’t hold a candle to the complications that arise when Toni Davis shows up at the precinct. Just as Rynn is about to call it a day, Toni offers confidential information that may be related to the murder and the encounter puts Rynn in a challenging position. With this new information, Rynn needs to figure out how much to divulge to her new partner and even how much to believe. Not only that, but as time goes by, she needs to reckon what to do with Toni’s bold invitations and her own feelings and responses to the woman who holds so much influence and so many secrets. (more…)