A list of the top 15 mystery hardcover bestsellers for the week ending March 26, 2010 has been posted on the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books website.
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Moving up to number 9 from 16 is The Spellmans Strike Again, the fourth mystery in the Isabel Spellman series by Lisa Lutz.
First among her priorities as head of Spellman Investigations is to dig up some dirt on the competition, slippery ex-cop Rick Harkey -- a task she may enjoy a little too much. Next, faced with a baffling missing-persons case at the home of an aging millionaire, Izzy hires an actor friend, Len, to infiltrate the mansion as an undercover butler -- a role he may enjoy a little much.
Meanwhile, Izzy is being blackmailed by her mother (photographic evidence of Prom Night 1994) to commit to regular blind dates with promising professionals -- an arrangement that doesn't thrill Connor, an Irish bartender on the brink of becoming ex-boyfriend number 12.
At Spellman headquarters, it's business as unusual. Doorknobs and light fixtures are disappearing every day, Mom's been spotted crying in the pantry, and a series of increasingly demanding Spellman Rules (Rule #27: No Speaking Today) can't quite hold the family together. Izzy also has to decipher weekly "phone calls from the edge" from her octogenarian lawyer, Morty, as well as Detective Henry Stone's mysterious interest in rekindling their relationsh ... well, whatever it was.
Just when it looks like things can't go more haywire, little sister Rae's internship researching pro bono legal cases leads the youngest Spellman to launch a grassroots campaign that could spring an innocent man from jail -- or land Rae in it.
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Stealthily creeping up the list and moving into 11th position is The Devil's Star, the fifth mystery in the Harry Hole series Jo Nesbo (but only the third to be published in English).
Oslo is sweltering in the summer heat when a young woman is murdered in her flat. One finger has been cut off and a tiny red diamond in the shape of a pentagram—a five-pointed star—is found under her eyelid. Detective Harry Hole is assigned the case with Tom Waaler, a colleague he neither likes nor trusts. He believes Tom is behind a gang of arms smugglers—and the murder of his partner. But Harry, an off-the-rails alcoholic, is barely holding on to his job and has little choice but to play nice.
Five days later, another woman is reported missing. When her severed finger is found adorned with a star-shaped red diamond ring, Harry fears a serial killer is on the loose. Determined to find the killer and expose the crooked Tom Waaler, Harry discovers the two investigations melding in unexpected ways. But pursuing the truth comes at a price, and soon Harry finds himself on the run and forced to make difficult decisions about a future he may not live to see.
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The top four mystery bestsellers this week are shown below:
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