Monday, February 26, 2024

Dark City Underground: REVIEW: "A NIGHT AT THE SHORE" BY TONY KNIGHTON

 Dark City Underground: REVIEW: "A NIGHT AT THE SHORE" BY TONY KNIGHTON

Markets and Jobs for Writers 2/26/2024

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Aubrey Nye Hamilton Reviews: The Silent House of Sleep by Allan Gaw


Allan Gaw is a Scottish physician turned writer. Most of his career has been in academic medicine as a pathologist and clinical researcher. He worked for the National Institute for Health Research at the University of Leeds and was Professor & Director of the Clinical Research Facility at Queen’s University Belfast. He previously worked at Glasgow University and the University of Texas Southwestern in Dallas as well as the NHS. In addition to his twenty-five non-fiction books, he has published over two hundred articles. He now focuses on poetry and fiction. The Silent House of Sleep (SA Press, 2023) is his debut novel and is the first in a new historical medical mystery series.

Told through dual timelines in the early days of World War I and in the late 1920s, this first book about Dr. John Archibald Cuthbert, senior pathologist at St. Thomas’s Hospital and senior police surgeon with the Metropolitan Police, shows his path to becoming the pre-eminent pathologist of his day and his work on a particularly puzzling homicide case.

Cuthbert’s brutal experiences in the trenches and the hospital tents of France are realistically and graphically related, along with the resultant PTSD that afflicts Cuthbert in the present. Cuthbert’s hard-won knowledge informed his later work as a pathologist and a police surgeon. Gaw’s notes show he used a number of primary sources in writing these chapters, framing them with the immediacy, the terror, and the misery of the battlefield.

In this first investigation Freddie Dawson had been missing for three months by the time his body was found. His parents had given up on seeing him alive again and the police had stopped looking for him. The post-mortem showed his remains were interred with those of another corpse. The description of the painstaking autopsy is clinical in its detail.

Parallel to the forensic analysis, Detective Inspector Franklin interviewed again everyone who might have seen Dawson before he disappeared and combed the missing person records to identify the other corpse. Franklin’s thorough police work and Cuthbert’s scientific research meld into a complicated explanation for the two deaths, a particularly vicious one that will make some readers queasy.

Gaw has created an original character in Cuthbert and has given him some fine support in his Belgian housekeeper and his eager assistant with the airhead fiancé. Both of these individuals offer potential for intriguing subplots in future books. Well-written and structured, the dual timeline was handled skillfully. I skipped some of the medical detail as it was TMI; Gaw never lets the reader forget that he is a doctor. Fans of Kathy Reich and Charles Todd will be especially interested in this series.

 

 

·         Publisher: SA Press (November 30, 2023)

·         Language: English

·         Paperback: 298 pages

·         ISBN-10: 0956324266

·         ISBN-13: 978-0956324269




Amazon Associate Purchase Link:  https://amzn.to/3uBElGX



Aubrey Nye Hamilton ©2024

 

Aubrey Hamilton is a former librarian who works on Federal It projects by day and reads mysteries at night.

Sunday, February 25, 2024

Little Big Crimes: Mall Cop Christmas Parade, by Joslyn Chase

Little Big Crimes: Mall Cop Christmas Parade, by Joslyn Chase:   "Mall Cop Christmas Parade," by Joslyn Chase, in Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine, January/February  2024. 'Tis the m...

Dru's Book Musings: New Releases Coming Soon ~ March 2024

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Lesa's Book Critiques: HAPPY ANNIVERSARY, CRIPPEN & LANDRU

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SleuthSayers: The Bar

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Saturday, February 24, 2024

Dru's Book Musing: New Releases ~ Week of February 25, 2024

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Lesa's Book Critiques: DEATH ON THE MOVE BY BILL CRIDER

 Lesa's Book Critiques: DEATH ON THE MOVE BY BILL CRIDER

Scott's Take: The Malevolent Seven by Sebastien De Castell


The Malevolent Seven by Sebastien De Castell is a complicated book just like all his works. The book jacket copy describes the read in one way and the actual book tells another. In the book description, Cade is a mercenary wizard who, after the end of his last job, pissed off a lot of people. He has now joined his friend Corrigan on a suicide mission to kill 7 deadly wizards who want to change the world for the better. Of course, things are a lot more complicated than that.

 

This book has action, horror, drama, humor, and lots of dark fantasy elements. This is a world where there are not really any just rock-solid good guys or good girls. Everybody in the read, just like real life, are characters that are shades of grey.

 

As one expects in a book by Sebastien De Castell, there are plenty of twists, turns and manipulations. My one complaint is that for a book that supposed to be from the bad guy perspective, the so called “bad guys” are not as bad as one would expect. They are pretty tame. I was expecting evil mercenaries, instead I read about people who are troubled and need a good therapist.

 

While the book is supposed to be about fighting the powerful wizards, a good portion of the book is spent on the journey to get to where the other wizards are gathering. There is also a good portion of the book spent detailing Cade’s last job before he went on this suicide mission. While a really good book, The Malevolent Seven by Sebastien De Castell is not the book I was expecting based on the book jacket copy.

 

The book offers a route for a possible sequel should the author choose to do it. I hope that happens.


Amazon Associate deal is not showing correctly so go here to pick it up.


My reading copy from the Downtown, or Central Branch, of the Dallas Public Library System.

 

Scott A. Tipple © 2024

Friday, February 23, 2024

A Writer's Life....Caroline Clemmons: PREORDER KEITH AND THE MAIL ORDER BRIDE

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Bookblog of the Bristol Library: Murderabilia: A History of Crime in 100 Objects by Harold Schechter

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Lesa's Book Critiques: KEVIN’S CORNER ANNEX – A NICE PLACE TO DIE BY J. WOOLLCOTT

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Writer Beware: Coping With Scams: Suggestions for Changing Your Mindset

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Beneath the Stains of Time: Stories of Crime & Detection, vol. 1: The Dr. Britling Stories (2023) by James Ronald

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Happiness Is A Book: FRIDAY’S FORGOTTEN BOOK: THE METROPOLITAN OPERA MURDERS BY HELEN TRAUBEL

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FFB Review: Concealed in Death: In Death Series by J.D. Robb

 

Long ago the neighborhood that holds the aging and neglected building was named “Hell’s Kitchen.”  In the here and now of 2060, the decrepit structure is a recent purchase of Roarke’s. He plans to gut the building, rebuild it, and restore it to its former glory. Roarke has a vision for the old place and isn’t willing to level it. As has long been established, Roarke has the money to accomplish anything.

 

Along with a crew of workers, the job boss, Pete Staski, and head architect, Nina Whitt, Roarke is on site. It would be cheaper to tear it all down and start over, but Roarke is having none of that. Pete suggests that Roarke should take the first couple of whacks as it is good luck when the boss takes the first demolition strikes. Roarke agrees and goes to work with two hard blows of the sledgehammer.

 

The group quickly realizes that behind the first wall that was not up to code, was an inner space to the actual real wall. In that inner space between the two walls sits two bundles wrapped in plastic. There are literally bodies in the walls.

 

Roarke alerts his wife and before long she, Peabody, and others are at the decrepit three-story building and going to work. While Roarke now owns the building, he has not had it long, so unlike other cases where he owned the location holding a crime scene and or knew folks involved, this time his connection is straightforward and nearly non-existent. He is still going to be very involved.

 

Roarke’s involvement will help as the building has been derelict for years since the previous owners, Nashville Jones, and his sister, Philadelphia Jones, moved out in September of 2045. They were using the place for a shelter for kids, runaways, and others, before moving to a new place. The building has been sitting vacant as a target for squatters, vandals, and thieves that took everything they possibly could.

 

It also served as a graveyard. In addition to the two bodies Roarke found, police investigators have found ten more skeletons. All twelve are clearly female and of a young age. Most likely early to mid-teens. The gender and age range that the place known as “The Sanctuary” took in from May of 2041 to September 2045.

 

It is up to Lieutenant Eve Dallas, Peabody, and the team to not only identify the 12 victims in a case that goes back at least 15 years, but identify the killer or killers. They could be alive, having escaped for all this time, or the person(s) responsible could be dead. Nobody knows. What is clear is that the list of unidentified victims is long and this case is going to take quite some time. Identifying the dead and notifying the next of kin of each person is step one in what will be a massive case.

 

What follows is a complicated police procedural. Having somebody around with massive resources is a huge help, though as always, painstakingly slow and detailed work by the police and others is what actually solves cases. As one always knows in this series, Dallas is going to get answers and some form of justice. The question is how. That certainty that some sort of justice will win out in the end is what makes these reads fun and an escape from the real world. 

 

My Amazon Associate Link: https://amzn.to/3vFT4R5 

 

My reading copy came by way of the Libby/OverDrive App and the Dallas Public Library System. 

 

Kevin R. Tipple ©2024

Thursday, February 22, 2024

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Happiness Is A Book: PERFECT OPPORTUNITY BY STEVEN HAVILL

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MAKE MINE MYSTERY: Time, Fate and Choices

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George Kelly: WEDNESDAY’S SHORT STORIES #162: A TRIO OF TOLERABLE TALES By Margaret Atwood

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Short Story Wednesday Review: Dark Yonder: Issue 2, Spring 2023


After brief intros by Editors Katy Munger and Eryk Prutt followed by a drink recipe, it is onto the stories. Noted author S.A. Cosby powerfully kick things off with “A Song For The Shattered Hearts” Terry has had a really bad week. The kind of week that country and western songs are written about. At least he still has fishing and is doing so in a neglected spot on an inlet of the Chesapeake Bay. As a reader, you know he will catch something. The question is what will it be and what will the catch lead to.

 

Sticking around the club for the free after work drink was a bad idea in “Big Bob’s Donuts At 3 A.M.” by Megan Lucas. She met Teddy, felt a tingle, and felt seen and heard. Meeting Teddy created a new set of problems in an already hard life.

 

Jason has a plan for the old Florida motel in “Chicken Fly Christ” by Joseph Hirsch. Those plans are going to have to wait as a guest by the name of Craig Sakowitz is being a difficult check in. He isn’t the only one with problems in the motel.

 

Eli Tate and Norris Mapp are twelve years and riding mountain bikes adjacent to a lake. In “Wheelies” by Recita L. Clemons, they find an injured woman. While she is injured in some way, they can see blood, she also might be trouble.

 

He works for Roy’s Taxi and, over the years, has seen quite a lot more than a thing or two. He sees more stuff in “I’m Coming To Get You” by Kevin Brown. The good, bad, and the ugly past flow through this short story.

 

Tony is an artist and is dating Kenzie. Things are progressing along their relationship so he has invited her to his home for the first time in “Bear Hunt” by Warren Moore.  Art and art appreciation drive the romantic interest in their relationship. But, they may not see art and the artist the same way.

 

A child is missing in “Trayden’s 2!” by Alice Archer. That missing child is just one point in lot of stuff going on in this complicated story.

 

Jackson isn’t having much fun on vacation with his family in “Beach House” by Joe Labriola. This Memorial Day weekend getaway is a bust, all things considered. At least he found a hidden spot in a small gully just down from his rented beach house. At least he could go there and relax if he could just get five minutes to himself.

 

She likes to spend intimate time with men who have recently become widowers. She loves their grief as it makes her feel alive and powerful. In “Grief” by Preston Lang, Annabel and her obsession with broken men is the final short story.

 

Each of the tales presented in Dark Yonder: Issue 2, Spring 2023, is a good one. Noir is the universal theme and each tale is a dark one. While the setup parameters might occasionally be familiar to readers, the execution of the premise and how that is accomplished is what makes these reads work.

 


As is a first issue, Dark Yonder: Issue 2, Spring 2023, is well worth your time.


Amazon Associate Purchase Link: https://amzn.to/42NFnMk

 

My digital reading copy was a gift from a friend. Yes, Virginia, I do have friends.

 

 

Kevin R. Tipple ©2024 

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Lesa's Book Critiques: MURDER BY LAMPLIGHT BY PATRICE MCDONOUGH

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Kathleeen Marple Kalb's Blog: So You Wrote the Book, Now What?: DON'T GO IT ALONE

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The First Two Pages: “Deep Time” by Lawrence Maddox

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Jerry's House of Everything: THE CASES OF EDDIE DRAKE: THE MAN WITH THE STOMACH ACHE (1949)

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