Busy Times in Mystery Publishing
There is a lot of activity on the mystery front this time of year, including the release of many titles by popular mystery authors. Here are some highlights:
W is for Wasted by Sue Grafton will be released on September 10. Of course, after this title there are only 3 more Kinsey Milhone books in the alphabet format. Grafton is often asked in interviews what she'll write after the Z title. In a 2011 interview with Goodreads the 73-year-old author provided this answer:
"I'm always being asked what I'm going to do after Z is for Zero. I point out that since it's taking me two years per book, we're looking at another five or six years from now. I can't imagine life without writing, and I can't imagine life without Kinsey Milhone. Here's a promise I'd like to make. I will never, never, never do linking titles again, so don't talk to me about aardvarks, BB guns or the Greek alphabet. Ain't gonna happen kids, but I appreciate your loyalty and enthusiasm."
Another popular author and local favorite, Les Roberts, has just published his 17th Milan Jacovich mystery, Win, Place, or Die. One thing of note is that Roberts, 76, has co-authored this book with Dan S. Kennedy. Perhaps Roberts is taking a cue from Milan, who also has a new associate, Kevin "K.O." O'Bannion. In this story Roberts takes us on a behind-the-scene look at a harness racing track where Milan and Kevin investigate the murder of one of their clients.
One of the big stories in mysteries this summer was the publication of the book The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith (pseudonym). Word got out, via Twitter, of course, that the author is really J.K. Rowling of Harry Potter fame. I originally ordered one copy, but once people heard the news, the holds list swelled. I've re-ordered twice and the publisher has had to scramble to meet the demand. The reviews, most written before Rowling's name surfaced, have all been very positive. From Publisher's Weekly: "In a rare feat, the pseudonymous Galbraith combines a complex and compelling sleuth and an equally well-formed and unlikely assistant with a baffling crime in his stellar debut."
And a popular mystery series is being relaunched, by none other than the author's daughter. Anne Hillerman, daughter of Tony, who passed away in 2008, will continue his series featuring the beloved Navajo police officers Jim Chee and Joe Leaphorn, last seen in 2006" The Shape Shifters. Due out October 1, Anne Hillerman's book, Spider Woman's Daughter, reunites Leaphorn, Chee, and Chee's wife Bernadette Manualito in a case involving the shooting of an officer, Indians artifacts, insurance fraud, and a desperate killer.
New releases coming soon:
Brandman, Michael - Robert B. Parker's Damned if You Do - his third title since Parker's death in 2010 - and 12th in the Jesse Stone series.
Coel, Margaret - Killing Custer - 17th in her Wind River series with Fr. John O'Malley and Arapaho attorney Vicky Holden.
Francis, Felix - Dick Francis's Refusal - father and son wrote several novels together before Dick Francis passed away in 2010. This is the third by Felix Francis.
Haddam, Jane - Hearts of Sand - #28 in the series featuring retired FBI profiler Gregor Demarkian.
Keller, Julia - Bitter River - only the second title about Bell Elkins, prosecuting attorney for Raythune County, West Virginia. But her first book, A Killing in the Hills, was one of the highest-circulating mystery titles last year and I again had to order extra copies to meet the holds demand.
Robb, J. D. - Thankless in Death - the 38th full-length title in the popular series with Eve Dallas, a homicide detective in futuristic New York.
On display this month in the mystery section are Cozy Mysteries, Not so Cozy Mysteries, and Forensic Mysteries (the CSI Effect). Check one out!