Coupon code “partners” gives 40% off on discountable books at Kobo

There seems to be a coupon code, “partners”, available at Kobo right now that gives 40% off on “discountable” books. Coupon codes at Kobo can be frustrating because only some books are discountable. In general, books from the big publishers, like Harper Collins or Simon & Schuster, are not discountable. But books from smaller/independent presses …

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Review of The Return of the Pharaoh by Nicholas Meyer – coming soon

Holmes and Watson in Egypt – what a treat… Nicholas Meyer has been “editing” the posthumous memoirs of John H Watson, MD, for decades, albeit rather sporadically, starting with The Seven-Per-Cent Solution, which came out in 1974, and won a Gold Dagger Award.   Now he’s come out with a fifth rip-roaring Holmes and Watson tale, …

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Review of Mrs Hudson and the Blue Daisy Affair by Martin Davies – coming soon

What a fun, fun book… The Sherlock Holmes stories were some of the first mysteries I graduated to after Encyclopedia Brown and Nancy Drew, and I loved them.  But I’ve always felt that a lot of Holmes pastiches (Laurie R King’s Mary Russell series aside) fall a little flat.    So I was very pleasantly surprised …

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Review of Fated Blades by Ilona Andrews – coming 23 November 2021

A welcome return to the Kinsmen series… Author duo Ilona Andrews have returned to their Kinsmen universe after a decade or so, and it’s a shame they stayed away so long.   Fated Blades is a long novella – or is it a short book?  You pick!   But either way, it’s a fast-paced and fun tale …

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Review of The Sleeping Car Murders by Sébastien Japrisot – coming soon

If I hadn’t already known I was reading an English translation of a French murder mystery, I would have figured it out anyway by the fourth paragraph of The Sleeping Car Murders.  That’s the paragraph where Pierre, the railroad employee whose job it is to check over the just-arrived Phocéen train, and thus the man …

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Review of City of the Dead by Jonathan Kellerman – coming in February, 2022

Another enjoyable outing for Alex Delaware and Milo Sturgis… I only recently started reading Jonathan Kellerman’s Alex Delaware/Milo Sturgis series and I’ve really liked the books I’ve read so far.    (You can read my review of Kellerman’s currently-most-recent title, Serpentine, here.)     And I definitely enjoyed Kellerman’s upcoming series title, City of the Dead, as well. …

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A review of A Darker Reality by Anne Perry – out today

Elena visits Washington DC… A Darker Reality is the third book in Anne Perry’s still young Elena Standish series, and I hope there are many more to come.   Elena is the child of a British diplomat and his American wife, whose parents, Wyatt and Dorothy Baylor, are a wealthy and connected couple with a large …

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Review of The Burning by Jonathan and Jesse Kellerman – coming soon

The fire seems like the main character… I had never read anything by Jesse Kellerman, so I was happy to receive an advance review copy of the latest title in his Clay Edison series, The Burning, written in partnership with his father, Jonathan Kellerman.    And I’m glad I got the chance to read it.  As …

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Review of The Case of the Borrowed Brunette by Erle Stanley Gardner – e-book coming soon

Nice to get back in touch with Perry Mason and crew… Erle Stanley Gardner was one of the first mystery authors whose books I read after I realized there WERE mystery authors other than Agatha Christie.    And way back then, while I was in graduate school, Gardner’s books were perfect for the limited leisure reading …

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Stone’s Throw (Jesse Stone series) by Mike Lupica – coming soon

A nice continuation of the Jesse Stone series… I’m often not a fan of continuations of popular series after the original author passes away.   But whoever is in control of the estate of Robert B Parker has done a pretty good job, IMO, of selecting authors to continue his Spenser, Jesse Stone, and Sunny Randall …

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Review of Shills Can’t Cash Chips by Erle Stanley Gardner

My favorite Erle Stanley Gardner series… Erle Stanley Gardner is the super-famous author of more than 80 Perry Mason mysteries, which, in addition to being best-selling books in their own right, were also spun off into a long-running TV series and several movies.   Few people, however, are aware that he also wrote almost 30 titles …

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Review of The Man Who Wasn’t There by Henrietta Hamilton – just published

Light and fun… In my last review of a Henrietta Hamilton book, I expressed hope that Agora Books would continue re-issuing her books.   And not only have they done so, they’ve even managed to acquire the rights to some of her previously unpublished books, including this one, The Man Who Wasn’t There, which is part …

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Review of Answer in the Negative by Henrietta Hamilton – recently republished

An enjoyable classic British mystery… Agora Books makes a business of re-issuing older British mysteries, such as Answer in the Negative, which was originally published in 1959.   Although I had never heard of Henrietta Hamilton before being offered an ARC of this title, I tend to like the sort of mysteries where the detectives, whether …

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A review of A Baffling Murder at the Midsummer Ball by TE Kinsey – coming soon

More Jazz Age mayhem in the UK… A Baffling Murder at the Midsummer Ball is the second in TE Kinsey’s historical mystery series featuring the Dizzy Heights, an eight-piece jazz band based in London.   In the first book, the band’s founders, Skins Maloney and Barty Dunn, together with Skins’ American wife, Ellie, tracked down a …

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A review of Burying the Crown by TP Fielden, just out

High-placed shenanigans during World War II Burying the Crown is the second in TP Fielden’s historical mystery series featuring Guy Harford as a courtier at Buckingham Palace, serving King George VI and the royal family during World War II.  Harford, who would rather be a painter in Tangier, where he lived before the war, is …

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Review of Devil by the Tail by Jeanne Matthews – just out

Crime and mayhem in post-Civil-War Chicago… I have read and enjoyed most (all?) of the books in Jeanne Matthews’ Dinah Pelerin series, but haven’t seen a new title in that series for several years.   So I was a little surprised to see that Matthews had a brand-new book in a brand-new series coming out in …

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Review of UTube – Inspector Mislan and the Emancipatist Conspiracy by Rozlan Mohd Noor – coming soon

In UTube – Inspector Mislan and the Emancipatist Conspiracy, Rozlan Mohd Noor has written another excellent police procedural, enjoyable both for the mechanics of the investigation (forensics, leg work, computer savvy – and a bit of luck) and for its detailed background in Kuala Lumpur.   And, of course, for its food.    It seems there is …

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Blotto, Twinks, and the Ex-Kings Daughter by Simon Brett – a review

LOL funny all the way through… I have been quite fond of Simon Brett’s earlier books, especially the Mrs. Pargeter series.  So I was intrigued by his Blotto & Twinks series, which looked to be a little different in style – and it was – a lot.    The first book in the series, Blotto, Twinks, …

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Coming soon: The Bone Code by Kathy Reichs – a review

Somehow, in spite of the fact that I’m a huge mystery reader, I’ve missed out until now on reading any books from the Temperance Brennan series by Kathy Reichs.   This is probably because they’ve always looked kind of thriller-ish to me, and I’m just not usually all that thrilled with thrillers.   However, I was recently …

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Review of Murder at Madame Tussauds by Jim Eldridge – recently published

A real dead body amongst the wax ones… I am a huge fan of historical mysteries, but somehow had never heard of Jim Eldridge’s Museum Detectives series, set in the late 1800s, and featuring ex-Scotland Yard detective Daniel Wilson and his partner, archeologist Abigail Fenton.  So I was happy to receive a review copy of …

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It’s Her Fault by Tony Gleeson is free at Black Cat Mysteries, and also a couple of nice coupons for Wildside Press

Wildside Press and its affiliate/subsidiary/imprint/brand (???) Black Cat Mysteries are offering some Father’s Day deals, including a free copy of It’s Her Fault by Tony Gleeson, and a couple of nice coupons. Details on those below. I’m quite fond of Wildside Press/Black Cat because they e-publish one of my favorite, but rather obscure, series, the …

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Review of Beyond the Headlines by RG Belsky – recently published

Smooth and easy to read… I had read and really enjoyed the previous book in this series, The Last Scoop, and so I was happy to also receive an advance review copy of Beyond the Headlines.   And I wasn’t disappointed – the things I had enjoyed in the earlier book were all also present in …

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The Night Hawks by Elly Griffiths – A Review

Ruth is back in the Saltmarsh… I’m a big fan of mysteries with archeology/anthropology involved, so I was happy (and honored) to receive an advance review copy of Elly Griffiths’ latest book, The Night Hawks, featuring forensic archeologist, Dr. Ruth Galloway.   As the story opens, we find out that Ruth and her daughter, Kate, are …

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Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line by Deepa Anappara is on sale in the US today

Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line by Deepa Anappara won, per SYKM, the 2021 Edgar Award for Best Mystery. This appears to be Anappara’s first mystery, but it didn’t just win “Best First Mystery”, but straight-out “Best Mystery”. I haven’t read this yet, but now I’m going to get to (!!!), because it has dropped …

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Mapping the Great Game: Explorers, Spies and Maps in 19th-Century Asia by Riaz Dean is on sale today at Kindle US

As I’ve mentioned before a time or two, I’m a huge fan of the Great Game period of history, and now here is Mapping the Great Game: Explorers, Spies and Maps in 19th-Century Asia, by Riaz Dean, on sale at Kindle US for $2.99, as part of today’s Daily Deal. I’m not sure how well …

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Coming soon: Castle Shade by Laurie R. King – a review

I’ve very much enjoyed Laurie R King’s Mary Russell and Sherlock Holmes series over the years, so I was happy to receive an advance review copy of the latest title in the series, Castle Shade.  It’s set in Roumania (modern Romania) in the 1920s, while political and territorial currents are still swirling in the aftermath …

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Review of Fugitive Telemetry by Martha Wells – recently published

A nice mix of mystery and science fiction… I’m a big fan of mysteries, and I like to read mysteries set in places that are new to me – or in this case, imaginary places that are new to me!  Fugitive Telemetry by Martha Wells fills that bill quite nicely.    Our protagonist, Murderbot, is a …

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Mini review of Robert Kroese’s Mercury series – and some price drops!

Robert Kroese’s Mercury series features a journalist, Christine Temetri, whose job it is to report on various purported End Times. She gets very complacent, because all of the supposed End Times turn out to be fake…until one day one turns out to be the real thing. And the real one comes complete with a very …

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Series review: Daisy Gumm Majesty series by Alice Duncan

I am a huge fan of the Daisy Gumm Majesty series by Alice Duncan.  It’s a cozy series, featuring Daisy as a medium, who, even though she isn’t really connecting with the afterlife (or is she?), still somehow manages to give comfort to the rich Pasadena folks who pay her to hold séances.  And, of …

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A Death at Seascape House by Emma Jameson is out today – a review

A bit slow to start, but very enjoyable once it does…. I’ve read and really enjoyed all of the books in Emma Jameson’s Lord and Lady Hetheridge series.  So I was happy to receive an advance review copy of the first title in Jameson’s new series featuring Jemima (Jem) Jago and set in the Isles …

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Review of Skelton’s Guide to Suitcase Murders – just published

A really nice historical mystery… I am a huge fan of historical mysteries, and so I was really happy to receive an advance review copy of Skelton’s Guide to Suitcase Murders, which is set in England in 1929-1930.  Suitcase Murders (as I’m going to call it, because the title is too long to type all …

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Review of Farewell My Herring by LC Tyler, out today

A wonderfully funny “isolated mansion” mystery… In Farewell My Herring, author LC Tyler has created a thoroughly enjoyable novel that is a wonderful example of the understated British humor that I like so much.   And the humor comes writ large via Tyler’s spot-on send-up of the classic “isolated mansion in a snowstorm” trope – nicely …

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The Smuggler’s Daughter by Kerry Barrett – review

A really enjoyable then-and-now tale… I’m not normally a big fan of romantic suspense, but I do usually like the “parallel stories in different times” theme.   So I was happy to receive an advance review copy of Kerry Barrett’s The Smuggler’s Daughter, which has two intertwined storylines – separated in time, but both revolving around …

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Review of Death with a Double Edge by Anne Perry

A bit more than just a historical mystery… In Death with a Double Edge, author Anne Perry has created a really nice pre-WWI historical mystery featuring Daniel Pitt, the son of the protagonists (Charlotte and Thomas Pitt) in her earlier “main” series.   Daniel has become a lawyer, and after the gruesomely murdered body of one …

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What the Devil Knows by CS Harris – Coming April 6, 2021 (review)

A thought-provoking and enjoyable historical mystery… I had read and enjoyed a few of the early Sebastian St. Cyr books, back in the days when “book” pretty much meant “paper”.  But somehow in my transition to reading almost exclusively e-books, I lost track of the series – until recently, that is, when I became aware …

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Review of Karolina and the Torn Curtain by Maryla Szymiczkowa

I can’t figure out how I missed the first book in this series, because this series is so exactly my sort of thing – a well-written historical mystery in a slightly unusual (to me, at least) setting:  Cracow in the waning years of the 19th century.    In the 1890s, Cracow was a part of the …

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Review of Blood Runs Thicker by Sarah Hawkswood – out today

Sarah Hawkswood has written a thoroughly engaging historical mystery, set in England in the 1100s.    Lord Osbern de Lench has been found dead, and it’s obvious from the knife wounds that he has been murdered.  But who did it?   A number of possibilities present themselves, both close-at-hand, among his family, and farther away, in neighboring …

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Red Storm Rising by Tom Clancy and Larry Bond – a short review

Red Storm Rising is a bit of an odd-ball among Tom Clancy’s books, not just because it was co-written with Larry Bond and isn’t part of the Jack Ryan series. It’s a stand-alone that details what World War III, between the US and Soviet Union, might have looked like, IF (and it’s a big if), …

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Review of The Deadly Mystery of the Missing Diamonds by TE Kinsey

A fun new spin-off series… Author TE Kinsey has created an enjoyable spin-off series with The Deadly Mystery of the Missing Diamonds – the first of what will hopefully be several Dizzy Heights books.  Unlike the supposedly quiet country setting for the “parent” Lady Hardcastle books, this new series is unabashedly set in busy Jazz …

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Review of The Dark Heart of Florence by Tasha Alexander, coming soon

Don’t need to say much more than Florence…aah, Florence… Readers who like their historical mysteries with even more history than usual will enjoy Tasha Alexander’s latest Lady Emily mystery, The Dark Heart of Florence, set in the years leading up to World War I.  Britain and Germany are starting to bump elbows, and as an …

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DUKE: Inspector Mislan and the Expressway Murders by Rozland Mohd Noor – coming soon (review)

A very enjoyable police procedural set in Kuala Lumpur… Having read and really enjoyed the first book in Rozland Mohd Noor’s Inspector Mislan series, I was happy to receive an advance review copy of the second book in the series, DUKE: Inspector Mislan and the Expressway Murders.   And I was even happier to find that …

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review of The Postscript Murders by Elly Griffiths (coming in the US on March 2, 2021)

I would have loved to have seen more of Peggy… The Postscript Murders is the second in Elly Griffiths’ new series with Detective Sergeant Harbinder Kaur as the protagonist – although in this enjoyable read, the focus is actually just as much on an unlikely trio of amateur sleuths as it is on DS Kaur.  …

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Coming Feb 9, 2021: Comes the War by Ed Ruggero (review)

A wonderful WWII historical mystery…. Ed Ruggero has written a thoroughly enjoyable historical mystery in Comes the War, the second in his Eddie Harkins series.   Ruggero is a West Point graduate, Army infantry officer, and, later, West Point instructor; his expertise shows in this tightly written book that will engage readers from the first chapter …

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coming soon: Transient Desires by Donna Leon (review)

Another excellent Commissario Brunetti mystery… As usual, Donna Leon has given readers a wonderful mystery in Transient Desires, the thirtieth title in her Commissario Guido Brunetti series.   On the face of it, the story starts out as a simple investigation:  Who were the two men who sped away in a boat after dropping two badly …

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Review of Serpentine by Jonathan Kellerman (coming Feb 2, 2021)

A smooth as silk mystery that kept me reading late into the night… I am not fond of psychological thrillers.   And so, having read somewhere that Jonathan Kellerman’s main character in his main series is a psychologist, Alex Delaware, I just sort of wrote the series off, assuming that these were psychological thrillers.   And you …

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An omnibus of all eight of Ruth Downie’s Gaius Petreius Ruso/Tilla books is on sale for $3.99 (or less) in the US

I’ve mentioned before that I really like Ruth Downie’s Gaius Petreius Ruso/Tilla series, set in Roman Britain (and around the Roman empire of the time). I’m especially fond of Tilla’s character, even though she doesn’t get top billing. Now all eight of the books in the series are on sale in an omnibus. The titles …

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A Thousand Ships by Natalie Haynes is on sale in the US today

I haven’t read A Thousand Ships by Natalie Haynes, which is a retelling of the Trojan War putting “the women, girls and goddesses at the center of the Western world’s great tale ever told”. But it looks really intriguing, and has some great recommendations, including from Madeline Miller, the author of Circe. And I liked the …

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An omnibus of all eight Throne of Glass books by Sarah J Maas is on sale in the US

Today’s Kindle Black Friday deal has an omnibus of all eight titles (seven books and a collection of novellas) in the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J Maas for $5.99. And it’s matched and discountable at Kobo US – with my VIP membership, it’s showing as $4.85 for me there. Of course, YMMV. This …

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The Usual Santas is on sale in the US and UK

The Usual Santas is a holiday themed collection of short stories by Soho Crime authors, including: Helene Tursten, Mick Herron, Martin Limón, Timothy Hallinan, Teresa Dovalpage, Mette Ivie Harrison, Colin Cotterill, Ed Lin, Stuart Neville, Tod Goldberg, Henry Chang, James R. Benn, Lene Kaaberbøl & Agnete Friis, Sujata Massey, Gary Corby, Cara Black, Stephanie Barron …

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