“Right up there with Mr. Block’s best….A DROP OF THE HARD STUFF keeps us guessing.”—Tom Nolan, Wall Street Journal
Facing his demons in his first year of sobriety, Matthew Scudder finds himself on the trail of a killer. When Scudder’s childhood friend Jack Ellery is murdered, presumably while attempting to atone for past sins, Scudder reluctantly begins his own investigation, with just one lead: Ellery’s Alcoholics Anonymous list of people he wronged. One of them may be a killer, but that’s not necessarily Scudder’s greatest danger. Immersing himself in Ellery’s world may lead him right back to the bar stool.
In a novel widely celebrated by critics and readers, Lawrence Block circle back to how it all began, reestablishing the Matthew Scudder series as one of the pinnacles of American detective fiction.
Maureen Jennings - A Journeyman to Grief
The abduction of a young woman in 1858 ends in Toronto thirty-eight years later — in murder. In 1858, a young woman on her honeymoon is forcibly abducted and taken across the border from Canada and sold into slavery. Thirty-eight years later, Detective Murdoch is working on a murder case that will take all of his resourcefulness to solve. The owner of one of Toronto’s livery stables has been found dead. He has been horsewhipped and left hanging from his wrists in his tack room, and his wife claims that a considerable sum of money has been stolen. Then a second man is also murdered, his body strangely tied as if he were a rebellious slave. Murdoch has to find out whether Toronto’s small “coloured” community has a vicious murderer in its midst — an investigation that puts his own life in danger. Maureen Jennings’s trademark in her popular and acclaimed Detective Murdoch series is to reveal a long-forgotten facet about life in the city that dispels any notion that it really ever was “Toronto the Good.” As well, in A Journeyman to Grief, an exceptionally well plotted and engrossing story, she shows just how a great harm committed in the past can erupt fatally in the present.
Maureen Jennings - Vices of My Blood
The compelling new novel by Canada’s answer to Anne Perry. In his forties, the Reverend Charles Howard still cut an impressive figure. A married Presbyterian minister in Toronto’s east end, Howard was popular with the congregation that elected him, especially with the ladies, and most particularly with Miss Sarah Dignam. Respected in the community, Howard, as Visitor for the House of Industry, sat in judgment on the poor, assessing their applications for the workhouse. But now Howard is dead, stabbed and brutally beaten by someone he invited into his office. His watch and boots are missing. Has some poor beggar he turned down taken his vengeance? Murdoch’s investigation takes him into the arcane Victorian world of queer plungers — men who fake injury all the better to beg — and the destitute who had nowhere left to turn when they knocked on the Reverend Howard’s door.
Maureen Jennings - Night's Child
After thirteen-year-old Agnes Fisher faints at school, her teacher, the young and still idealistic Amy Slade, is shocked to discover in the girl’s desk two stereoscopic photographs. One is of a dead baby in its cradle, and on the back Agnes has scrawled a terrible message. Worse, the other photograph is of Agnes in a pose captioned “What Mr. Newly Wed Really Wants.” When Agnes doesn’t show up at school the next day, her teacher takes the two photographs to the police. Murdoch, furious at the sexual exploitation of such a young girl, resolves to find the photographer – and to put him behind bars. Night’s Child is the fifth novel in Maureen Jennings’s highly praised historical mystery series. Three of Jennings’s novels have been made into TV movies under the title Murder 19C: The Murdoch Mysteries. Bravo/CHUM is currently developing a series based on the character of Detective William Murdoch for broadcast in 2007
Maureen Jennings - Let Loose the Dogs
In Let Loose the Dogs, Murdoch’s life and work overlap tragically. His sister, who long ago fled to a convent to escape their abusive father, is on her deathbed. Meanwhile, Harry Murdoch, the father whom Murdoch long ago shut out of his life, has been charged with murder and calls on his estranged son to prove his innocence. But, knowing his father, what is Murdoch to believe?
Maureen Jennings - Poor Tom Is Cold
In this third adventure featuring the lovable detective William Murdoch, he becomes involved with the apparent suicide of Constable Oliver Wicken – a man who was the sole support of his mother and invalid sister. But further investigation by Detective Murdoch takes him far afield and he begins to suspect that the Eakin family, whose house adjoins the one where Wicken died, is more involved with the case than they admit. Whether describing a tooth extraction, the unquestioning prejudice toward the few Chinese immigrants in the city, or the well-intentioned, but bizarre, treatment of mentally ill women, Maureen Jennings once again brings the period vividly to life.
Maureen Jennings - Except the Dying
In the cold Toronto winter of 1895, the unclad body of a servant girl is found frozen in a deserted laneway. Detective William Murdoch quickly finds out that more than one person connected with the girl’s simple life has something to hide.
Maureen Jennings - Under the Dragon's Tail
Women rich and poor come to her, desperate and in dire need of help - and discretion. Dolly Merishaw is a midwife and an abortionist in Victorian Toronto, but although she keeps quiet about her clients' condition, her contempt for them and her greed leaves every one of them resentful and angry. So it comes as no surprise to Detective William Murdoch when this malicious woman is murdered. What is a shock, though, is that a week later a young boy is found dead in Dolly's squalid kitchen. Now, Murdoch isn't sure if he's hunting one murderer - or two.
Vince Flynn - Extreme Measures
With Mitch Rapp away on assignment in Pakistan, CIA Director Irene Kennedy turns to his protege, Mike Nash. Nash has served his government honourably for sixteen years, first as an officer in the Marine Corps, then as an operative in an elite counterterrorism team run by Mitch Rapp, never wavering in his fight against the jihads and their culture of death. Fighting the War on Terror in secret, he has been forced to lie to everyone he cares about, including his wife and children. He has soldiered on secure in the knowledge that his hard work and lethal tactics have saved the lives of thousands. But the one thing he never saw coming was that his own government was about to turn on him...
Agatha Christie - Crooked House
Three generations of the Leonides family live together in a large, if somewhat crooked looking, house. Then the wealthy patriarch, Aristide, is murdered. Suspicion falls on the whole household, including Aristide’s two sons, his widow – fifty years his junior – and even his three grandchildren. Could any member of this seemingly devoted family have had a hand in his death? Can Charles Hayward, fiancé of the late millionaire’s granddaughter, help the police find the killer and clear his loved one's name?
Agatha Christie - Sleeping Murder
Soon after Gwenda moved into her new home, odd things started to happen. Despite her best efforts to modernise the house, she only succeeded in dredging up its past. Worse, she felt an irrational sense of terror every time she climbed the stairs. In fear, Gwenda turns to Jane Marple to exorcise her ghosts. Between them, they are faced with having to solve a "perfect" crime committed many years before. "A puzzle that is tortuous, surprising and finally satisfying." _Sunday Express_
Agatha Christie - Hickory Dickory Dock
An outbreak of kleptomania at a student hostel is not normally the sort of crime that arouses Hercule Poirot's interest. But when he sees the bizarre list of stolen and vandalized items - including a stethoscope, some old flannel trousers, a box of chocolates, a slashed rucksack and a diamond ring found in a bowl of a soup - he congratulates the warden, Mrs Hubbard, on a 'unique and beautiful problem'. And, reasons Poirot, if this is merely a petty thief at work, why is everyone at the hostel so frightened?
Wilbur Smith - River God
River God follows the fate of the Egyptian Kingdom through the eyes of Taita, a multi-talented and highly skilled eunuch slave. Taita is owned by Lord Intef and primarily looks after his daughter, Lostris, but also plays a large role in the day to day running of Lord Intef's estate. The Pharaoh of Egypt is without a male heir, and Taita inadvertently causes Pharaoh to take an interest in Lostris. Lostris meanwhile is in love with the soldier Tanus, who unbeknownst to her is hated by her father. Eventually Pharaoh marries Lostris and Intef reluctantly gives Taita to her as a wedding gift. Meanwhile, Tanus has angered Pharaoh by speaking bluntly about the troubles Egypt is in - most prominently the growing bandit threat which terrorizes all who travel outside of the major cities. Pharaoh condemns him to death for his actions, but is convinced to allow Tanus to redeem himself by attempting to eliminate all the bandits from Egypt within two years. Since his sentence is revealed on the last day of the festival of Osiris, he is to return on that day of the next festival with his task complete or face death by strangulation. Tanus, with the help of Taita, hunts down and captures the leaders of the Shrike bandits. On presenting them to Pharaoh, it is revealed that their leader is Lord Intef. Tanus has his death sentence lifted, but Intef manages to escape before he can be punished for his crimes. After the sentence is announced a storm sweeps through allowing Lostris and Tanus time to be secretly alone together. During this time Lostris conceives Tanus' first born, and before the secret can be discovered Taita arranges for her to resume her wifely duties to Pharaoh. When the child is born he is named Memnon and claimed by the Pharaoh as his own, and his true paternity is known only to Lostris, Taita, and Tanus. A new threat to the kingdom emerges - the warlike Hyksos. Equipped with the horse and chariot, as well as a superior recurved bow, their technological superiority is far greater than the Egyptian army's. The Pharaoh is killed, forcing a majority of the Egyptian nobility (including Lostris, Tanus, and Taita) to flee Egypt by heading up the Nile with the remaining army. During their exile Lostris gives birth to two more of Tanus' children, both daughters, but as their relationship has been a secret Taita creates a cover story where the ghost of Pharaoh sires the child. During their period in exile, they regain their technical superiority - Taita replicates and improves both the chariots and bows he has seen used to such great effect on the battlefield. While searching for a suitable burying place for Pharaoh's body, Taita is taken captive by one of the Ethiopian chieftains of the area - the brutal Arkoun. While in captivity, Taita becomes close friends with Masara, a fellow captive and the daughter of one of the rival chieftains. Taita eventually escapes captivity due to a freak flooding, finds the father of Masara, and strikes a deal with him to rescue Masara. With the help of Tanus, Memnon, and the Egyptian army, Arkoun is defeated. Tanus is mortally wounded during the battle and dies. Masara and Memnon fall in love and become married, with a wedding gift of several thousand horses which further boost the Egyptian army. Led by their new Pharaoh Tamose (formerly Prince Memnon), they return to Egypt. With their new-found weaponry and tactics, they defeat the Hyksos invaders and regain the upper kingdom of Egypt from Elephantine to Thebes.
John Grisham - The Confession
An innocent man is days from execution. Only a guilty man can save him. Travis Boyette is a murderer. In 1998, in the small East Texas city of Sloan, he abducted, raped, and strangled a popular high-school cheerleader. He buried her body so that it would never be found, then watched and waited as police and prosecutors arrested Donte Drumm, a local football star with no connection to the crime. Tried, convicted and sentenced, Drumm was sent to death row: his fate had been decided. Nine years later, Donte Drumm is four days from execution. Over 400 miles away in Kansas, Travis faces a fate of his own: an inoperable brain tumour will soon deliver the end. Reflecting on his miserable life, he decides to do what's right. After years of silence he is ready to confess. But how can a guilty man convince lawyers, judges and politicians that they\'re about to execute an innocent man?
Jo Nesbø - The Snowman
The night the first snow falls a young boy wakes to find his mother gone. He walks through the silent house, but finds only wet footprints on the stairs. In the garden looms a solitary figure: a snowman bathed in cold moonlight, its black eyes glaring up at the bedroom windows. Round its neck is his mother's pink scarf.
Karin Slaughter - Beyond Reach
In a stifling hospital room in a small Georgia town, Detective Lena Adams sits, silent and angry—the only suspect in a horrific murder. Soon, a hundred miles away, Police Chief Jeffrey Tolliver will get the call that his young detective has been arrested. And Jeffrey’s wife, pediatrician and medical examiner Sara Linton, has troubles of her own and little patience for Lena or her dramas. Fighting a heartbreaking malpractice suit, Sara cannot guess that within days she herself will be at the center of a bizarre and murderous case. For Lena has fled back to the place where she grew up hard, careening back through the shadows of her past and into a shocking underground world of bigotry and rage. And now only Jeffrey and Sara can free Lena from the web of lies and brutality that has trapped her—as this powerhouse of a novel races toward its shattering climax…and a final, unforgettable twist.
Karin Slaughter - Indelible
Sometimes a past comes back to kill . . . Two armed men enter the police station in tiny Heartsdale, Georgia, and open fire. When the shooting stops, an officer is dead, Police Chief Jeffrey Tolliver is seriously wounded, and the survivors—including a class of grade-school children and medical examiner Sara Linton—are held hostage. In a tense standoff that could erupt at any moment into more bloodletting—with her ex-husband on the threshold of death—Sara must search for answers and an escape in the memories of a time at the start of their relationship when another brutal, shocking crime shattered their small-town world. Because the sins of the past have caught up with Sara and Jeffrey . . . with a vengeance.
Agatha Christie - The Moving Finger
Lymstock is a town with more than its share of shameful secrets - a town where even a sudden outbreak of anonymous hate-mail causes only a minor stir. But all that changes when one of the recipients, Mrs Symmington, commits suicide. Her final note says 'I can't go on' but still Miss Marple questions the coroner's verdict of suicide. Was this the work of a poison-pen? Or of a poisoner? _Reviews_ "Beyond all doubt the puzzle in The Moving Finger is fit for experts." _The Times_
Karin Slaughter - Blindsighted
The killer strikes in plain sight . . . but you'll never see it coming. The mutilation murder of a young college professor paralyzes a tiny Georgian community. This hideous crime is the worst thing small-town pediatrician and coroner Sara Linton has ever seen—but only when the autopsy is complete is the intricate, terrible genius of a profoundly twisted psychopath truly revealed. As Sara's ex-husband—Heartsdale police chief Jeffrey Tolliver—pursues an elusive fiend, Lena Adams—the victim's sister and the county's only female detective—swears she'll have her personal vengeance. But their worst fears are realized by the macabre crucifixion of a second local woman: there is a serial slayer in their midst, one whose identity is hidden somewhere in Sara Linton's secret past. And this killer has no intention of stopping . . . and will not be stopped.
Terry Hayes - I Am Pilgrim
_The Day of the Jackal meets Homeland with a dash of Bourne - a debut thriller to take your breath away._ Can you commit the perfect crime? Pilgrim is the codename for a man who doesn’t exist. The adopted son of a wealthy American family, he once headed up a secret espionage unit for US intelligence. Before he disappeared into anonymous retirement, he wrote the definitive book on forensic criminal investigation. But that book will come back to haunt him. It will help NYPD detective Ben Bradley track him down. And it will take him to a rundown New York hotel room where the body of a woman is found face down in a bath of acid, her features erased, her teeth missing, her fingerprints gone. It is a textbook murder – and Pilgrim wrote the book. What begins as an unusual and challenging investigation will become a terrifying race-against-time to save America from oblivion. Pilgrim will have to make a journey from a public beheading in Mecca to a deserted ruins on the Turkish coast via a Nazi death camp in Alsace and the barren wilderness of the Hindu Kush in search of the faceless man who would commit an appalling act of mass murder in the name of his God.