Friday, May 12, 2006

Press Release: A Mystery You Can Only Find in the Public Library

Announcing the release of Glass Chameleon, seventh mystery in the Deets Shanahan Mystery Series. This release discusses the significance of library edition publishing within the context of the mainstream publishing industry.

San Francisco, CA (PRWEB) May 11, 2006 — They are rarely reviewed in the mainstream newspapers and seldom found on the bookshelves of Borders or Barnes & Noble. Though available through such online bookstores as Amazon.com, they are books specifically published for libraries.

This is the case for Ronald Tierney’s Deets Shanahan mystery series, the seventh of which — Glass Chameleon — will be released in the U.S. in July. Severn House, a U.K. publisher noted for high-quality, hardback library editions of mysteries, thrillers and other books, picked up the series ten years after the original publisher dropped it.

“This was during the time when many mid-list writers disappeared,” Tierney said about his series that featured a septuagenarian Indianapolis private eye. “I’m glad he’s back. Of course I hope for wider distribution. Nonetheless it’s reassuring that he’s in the libraries. But what this says to mystery lovers who might want to go beyond the mainstream mysteries is ‘Check out your local library. They have books you won’t find anywhere else.’”

Tierney’s new book takes place in his native Indianapolis and pre-Katrina New Orleans.

“I think Glass Chameleon is the most provocative of the Shanahan books,” Tierney continued. “As we’re growing up, we are often advised not to discuss sex, politics and religion in polite company. That’s pretty much what the book is about. It’s not polite. It’s still funny, I hope, but it doesn’t shy away from current controversial issues in the process of finding a murderer.”

Booklist said this about the new book: “A plot chock-a-block with unexpected twists, a succinct writing style…unusual characters, and deadpan humor add up to a top-notch read in Tierney’s still-stellar series.”

To find out more about Severn House and its authors, visit www.severnhouse.com. For more information about Tierney’s Shanahan series, visit www.ronaldtierney.com. Tierney, an Indianapolis native, currently lives in San Francisco where he is working on several fiction projects.

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Wednesday, May 10, 2006

News: Tom Selleck Hoping to Star as Jesse Stone for a Long Time

Cynthia Littleton of the Hollywood Reporter writes that Tom Selleck is hoping to continue with the Jesse Stone telefilms as a recurring franchise for CBS. The most recent installment, Jesse Stone: Death in Paradise, was broadcast last week on CBS and earned the best reviews of the three movies so far. It also ranked as CBS' second-most-watched movie of the season with nearly 15 million viewers.

Selleck is quick to give CBS credit for allowing him to make the kind of movies he wants to make with the Stone franchise.

"I don't think you need an explosion in the first 10 minutes," Selleck said. "You don't need to do ripped-from-the-headlines stuff. If the audience likes the character enough, they'll go with you when he goes into a dark room at home alone, pours a scotch and sits down to think a while."

The Jesse Stone mysteries on CBS are based on the novels by best-selling mystery author Robert B. Parker.

Read the entire Hollywood Reporter article, as published on Philly.com, here.

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New Feature: Weekly Updates of Online Mystery Reviews

Mysterious ReviewsMysterious Reviews, mysteries reviewed by the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books, has added a new feature for our visitors.

In addition to mysteries that we review, every Wednesday we'll post links to other online reviews of recently published mystery books. A brief summary of the review is also provided. (Book titles will be linked to Amazon.com where reviews from Publishers Weekly and Kirkus Reviews, among others, are also posted.)

We recognize the value of the diversity of opinions reviewers have for mysteries, and look forward to your visits to Mysterious Reviews to keep current on your favorite mystery books, authors, and series characters.

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Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Mystery Book Review: The Abortionist's Daughter by Elisabeth Hyde

Mysterious ReviewsMysterious Reviews, mysteries reviewed by the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books, has published its review of The Abortionist's Daughter by Elisabeth Hyde on its website. For our blog readers, it is reprinted here in its entirety.

The Abortionist's Daughter by Elisabeth HydeSynopsis (from the publisher): Two weeks before Christmas, Diana Duprey, an outspoken abortion doctor, is found floating in her pool, a bruise the size of a golf ball visible through her dark curls. A national figure, Diana inspired passion and ignited tempers, never more so than on the day of her death.

Her husband, Frank, an attorney in the D.A.’s office for more than twenty years, had fought bitterly with her on the day of her murder. Yet to reveal the nature of their fight would cost him not only his career but something greater still—a relationship he will go to any lengths to protect. Diana’s daughter, Megan, a college freshman, had also quarreled with Diana that day, and her role in her mother’s murder will prove more significant than she ever could have anticipated. The Reverend Stephen O’Connell, founder of the town’s pro-life coalition, obviously had issues with Diana, but his anger extended beyond the political to the personal—namely, Dr. Duprey’s involvement with his own troubled teenager. Meanwhile, the detective on the case grapples to make sense of it all. His investigation implicates many in this town and reveals a series of gross miscalculations, each one challenging what we know, or think we know, about community, fidelity, justice, and love.

Review: "... some people had the power to dig themselves into the very deepest part of your brain and stay there until you paid them the attention they demanded."

This passage, from Elisabeth Hyde's stellar mystery The Abortionist's Daughter, a complex character study of people brought together by the murder of Diana Duprey, an abortion provider for a small town outside Denver, can be applied to most of the people in the book and is one of the reasons this is such an intriguing story. As the police investigate the murder, the relationships Diana had with her family and associates are carefully disclosed in a way that adds credibility to the plot and depth to the characters. The conclusion, though not unexpected, is nonetheless startling and dramatically revealed.

The title is something of a misnomer, and unfortunately tends to be erroneously suggestive. Though the daughter plays a prominent role in the book, the title implies the story is about her. It isn't. Furthermore, the use of the word "abortion" in any form is provocative. Some prospective readers may shy away thinking that the story is about abortion. It isn't. When a detective on the case calls the victim an "abortionist", her daughter quickly corrects him: she was an "abortion provider". It was her profession, but Hyde wisely doesn't take sides on the issue primarily because it is largely a plot device, to set up a professional and personal relationship between Diana and the founder of the town's pro-life coalition. It's unclear why either the author or the publisher chose this title as it unnecessarily detracts from an otherwise outstanding work of mystery fiction.

Special thanks to Random House for providing the ARC of The Abortionist's Daughter for this review.

Review Copyright © 2006 Hidden Staircase Mystery Books

Visit Mysterious Reviews for other reviews of current and older mystery books.

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Monday, May 08, 2006

News: Mystery Novelist Herbert Burkholz, 73

Herbert Burkholz, 73, a mystery novelist who briefly was a speechwriter at the Food and Drug Administration in the 1990s, died of lung cancer April 30 at Washington County Hospital in Hagerstown (MD), reports the Washington Post.

Burkholz wrote several mysteries, including a series with a group of mind-reading CIA agents known as "the Sensitives". He also collaborated with Clifford Irving on a number of spy thrillers.

Read the Washington Post's profile of Herbert Burkholz here.

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News: "Lost" Book Clues in Fans

Bad Twin by Gary TroupBad Twin, written by fictitious Oceanic Flight 815 passenger Gary Troup (an anagram of "purgatory") on the ABC series "Lost", is being billed as the last manuscript from the author, who supposedly dropped the book off at his publisher just days before perishing on the flight.

The plot centers on the detective Paul Artisan who is hired to track down the "bad twin" Zander Widmore by his "good twin" Cliff. Along the way, Artisan enlists the help of a good buddy who just so happens to be well-versed in biblical parables and metaphors on the meaning of life.

Gina Serpe, writing for E! Online, reports that, as expected, Bad Twin is full of references to the prime-time series, including several mentions of the 17th century philosopher John Locke, a makeshift boat named Escape Hatch, allusions to life being complicated and unable to be boiled down to something as simple as, say, "a string of numbers," and of course, most of the action takes place on a mysterious--and fictional--island.

Serpe adds, "For those fans wishing to check out more of Troup's work, they may want to dig up his first novel, The Valenzetti Equation. That is, if it actually existed they might. The book is described as centering on a mathematical equation that predicts the apocalypse, and while no more specifics have been released, it's likely 'Lost' fans could hazard an accurate guess as to which numbers may be involved in the solution."

Read the rest of the E! Online story here.

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Weekly Mystery Godoku Puzzle for 05/08/2006

Mystery Godoku Puzzle for May 08, 2006A new Mystery Godoku Puzzle has been created by the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books and is available on our website.

Godoku is similar to Sudoku, but uses letters instead of numbers. To give you a headstart, we provide you a mystery clue to fill in a complete row or column (if you choose to use it!).

This week's mystery clue: This is the title of James O. Born’s second mystery that features FDLE agent Bill Tasker. 9 letters: A C E H K O S V W.

Previous puzzles are stored in the Mystery Godoku Archives.

Enjoy the weekly Mystery Godoku Puzzle from the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books, and Thanks for visiting our website!

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Sunday, May 07, 2006

Profile: Elaine Viets, author of the Dead-End Job Mysteries

Murder Unleashed by Elaine VietsNo animals were harmed in the creation of Murder Unleashed, the fifth entry in Elaine Viets' award-winning Dead-End Job mystery series and her first hardcover whodunit. The former St. Louis Post-Dispatch columnist-turned-serial mystery writer commits murder in her mind only.

Viets researches all her Dead-End Job mysteries by working the jobs she writes about. Such research doesn't just give Viets an inside look at the occupations in question. It also gives her a megacast of characters.

Viets is a native of St. Louis, though she now lives in Fort Lauderdale with her husband, Don Crinklaw, and her "writing companion," Harry, her rescue cat. She also is the mastermind behind five other mysteries, which are packaged into two other series. Her next book, High Heels Are Murder, is due out in November and features "Mystery Shopper" Josie Marcus.

Read the entire profile of Elaine Viets by Sarah Newman in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and featured on STLtoday.com, here.

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Saturday, May 06, 2006

News: Oxygen Network 2007 Lineup to Include Mystery Series

The Oxygen network announced that it is continuing to re-write the rulebook for womens television with its most ambitious development slate to date for 2007. Included in its plans are pilots for two new mystery series.

Nicky Velnet, a one hour scripted action, drama. Nicky Velvet is a picky crook, who steals the seemingly valueless for a hefty fee of course. Need the water stolen from a swimming pool or the rare ivory comb from a dangerous thugs back pocket? Nicky will execute the job using her intuition and intellect to outsmart her dupe. Based on the 88 mystery books by Edward Hoch.

Robin Hudson Mysteries, a one hour scripted dramedy, mystery. Robin Hudson is a quirky, third-string reporter for the All News Network and just can't seem to win. When she becomes involved in a New Year's Eve murder mystery she discovers her uncanny ability to solve crimes better than the police. Based on the series of books by Sparkle Hayter.

Read about all of the Oxygen network's planned series and movies in The Futon Critic.

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Friday, May 05, 2006

Mystery Hardcover Bestsellers (05/05/2006)

Mystery BestsellersA list of the top ten mystery hardcover bestsellers for the week ending May 05, 2006 has been posted on the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books website.

Beach Road by James PattersonNew this week is James Patterson's latest "Beach" thriller, Beach Road. Reviews have been decidedly mixed, with Publisher's Weekly stating, "Bestseller Patterson shows signs of having gone to the well too often in this slapdash collaboration with de Jonge, his coauthor on The Beach House (2002). ... Fans can only hope that Patterson soon returns to the level he achieved with his Alex Cross series."

Bad Twin by Gary TroupAlso new is Bad Twin , the book tie-in to the ABC series "Lost". Though Gary Troup is a fictional author (the book was written by "a well-known mystery writer"), Hyperion has released the following statement regarding Troup: "It is with a mix of pride and sorrow that Hyperion presents Bad Twin, the last novel by a wonderful author who was taken from us in the very prime of his writing life. As many readers are already aware, Gary Troup has been missing since September 2004, when the jetliner that was carrying him from Sydney to Los Angeles crashed somewhere over the South Pacific. While nothing is more human than to hope for miracles, reason tells us that the author and his fellow-travelers cannot have survived this disaster."

Visit the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books often where we provide readers and collectors of mysteries with the best and most current information about their favorite mystery authors, books, and series.

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Thursday, May 04, 2006

Online Mystery Book Reviews

Margaret Cannon, Crime Book reviewer for the Globe and Mail, recently published her reviews of 6 new mystery books.

Promise Me, by Harlan Coben, Dutton: "After six years, Harlan Coben brings him back in a story so solid, a plot so complex, that it's one of his best."

Nicotine Kiss, by Loren D. Estleman, Forge: "This is a superb novel, and Estleman's lovely, lyrical writing style makes it a pleasure. There's not a thing to improve."

The Death of Achilles, by Boris Akunin, Random House: "The joy of Akunin's novels isn't just in the plot, although these are superior. He has the same zest for the chase and the sheer fun of it all that makes Holmes so wonderful."

Prior Bad Acts, by Tami Hoag, Bantam: "The opening chapter of this novel is so chilling, some readers will wonder if they can read the whole thing. But I can promise that, by page six, they will be gripped, spellbound, held to the page. Hoag is a fine writer, but this is her best book by far."

Debts of Dishonor, by Jill Paton Walsh, St. Martin's Press: "This novel marks the return of her Cambridge sleuth, Imogene Quy, and it's as good an update of Dorothy L. as you are ever likely to see."

Oh Danny Boy, by Rhys Bowen, St. Martin's Press: "This is a slight novel with a bit of a romance in the plot, a lot of fun and some terrific historical writing. Fans of the British cozy will love it, and so will readers of historical fiction."

Read her complete reviews here.

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Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Mystery Trivia for May 2006

Mystery TriviaThe Hidden Staircase Mystery Books has posted new mystery trivia questions for May 2006.

What well-known mystery author has been published under the pseudonyms Richard Stark, Tucker Coe, Samual Holt, and others?

What is the title of his first book published, under his real name, by Random House in 1960?

Visit the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books to see the answers to these questions as well as previous mystery book trivia questions from prior months.

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Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Press Release: Top Mystery Author to Head "Line-Up" for Murder in the Grove

(OPENPRESS) April 26, 2006 -- One of the world's best known and best-selling mystery authors, Anne Perry, will make a rare visit to Boise to take part in a bit of murder, mayhem, and fun at Murder in the Grove 2006, to be held June 2-3. Murder in the Grove, the northwest’s only annual mystery conference, caters to both fans and writers of mystery fiction.

Perry has sold more than twenty million books. She writes the Thomas and Charlotte Pitt, and the Inspector William Monk series, both set in Victorian England, a third series which takes place in England during World War I, and has written a number of stand-alone books as well. Born in England, Anne Perry has lived in the United States and New Zealand. She presently makes her home in Scotland.

The public is invited to meet Perry and the other mystery authors at a book fair and dessert party at Barnes & Noble on Friday, June 2 at 7 p.m. On Saturday, June 3, Murder in the Grove convenes from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Centre on the Grove with programs for both mystery fans and writers. Agents and editors will meet with authors looking for representation.

Local mystery authors Joanne Pence, Deborah Donnelly, Catherine Mulvany, and Kelly Jones plus authors C.J. Box, Carolyn Wheat, Bob Wiebezahl, Kirk Russell, Aileen Baron, Mary Buckham, Sylvia Hubbard, Larry Karp, Con Lehane, Rae Monet, Twist Phelan, J.D. Rhoades, Michael W. Sherer, Denise Swanson, Pari Noskin Taichert, and Pat White will join Perry as presenters at Murder in the Grove. Author/editor Denise Dietz will represent Five Star Press. Literary agents Meredith Bernstein and Jo Grossman will speak with aspiring writers. Forensic artist Carrie Stuart-Parks, DNA expert Dr. Greg Hampikian, and private investigator, Valerie Agosta will present workshops on crime investigation. For her contribution to the field of mystery, Sara Paretsky will receive the 2006 Ridley Award in absentia due to a recent injury.

For more information about the two-day conference, local authors Joanne Pence ([email protected] or 208/938-5995, website: www.joannepence.com), and Tammy Cooper ([email protected] or 208/375-8230, website: www.tlcooper.com) may be contacted at any time, or visit www.murderinthegrove.com.

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Monday, May 01, 2006

The Mystery Bookshelf: New Titles for May 2006

Mystery Book Contest
The Mystery Bookshelf has updated its list of new paperback titles to include those to be released in May 2006.

Visit The Mystery Bookshelf to browse mass market paperback mysteries published since December 2005. (Older mysteries are moved to the archives which are searchable and still available from The Mystery Bookshelf.)

For each mystery, you can see the book cover, an overview of the book (synopsis), and notes about the book. For example, if the mystery is part of a series, the entry in that series is given.

Please visit The Mystery Bookshelf often! We are commited to providing readers of popular mysteries with the best and most current information about their favorite mystery authors, books, and series.


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Weekly Mystery Godoku Puzzle for 05/01/2006

Mystery Godoku Puzzle for May 01, 2006A new Mystery Godoku Puzzle has been created by the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books and is available on our website.

Godoku is similar to Sudoku, but uses letters instead of numbers. To give you a headstart, we provide you a mystery clue to fill in a complete row or column (if you choose to use it!).

This week's mystery clue: Theresa Monsour's 3rd mystery featuring St. Paul homicide detective Sgt. Paris Murphy had this title. 9 letters: A D E H K O R S U.

Previous puzzles are stored in the Mystery Godoku Archives.

Enjoy the weekly Mystery Godoku Puzzle from the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books, and Thanks for visiting our website!


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