Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Press Release: Case of Missing Cover Art Solved

NEW YORK, Feb. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- Nancy Drew's latest mystery -- the case of the missing cover art -- has been solved! Seeking the return of original paintings used on the covers of Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys books first published in the 1960s, Penguin Group (USA) and the paintings' creator Rudy Nappi sued former Penguin employee Carl J. Ferrero in December. All of the paintings, as well as original drawings used to illustrate the books, have been returned.

"It was a misunderstanding," Ferrero said. "They were in a box of books given to me as a departure gift, when I left Penguin. I thought they were a gift. I'm just glad that I saved them and they are being returned to Rudy Nappi."

Nappi, the 84-year-old artist who created the paintings for all of the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys books published in the 1960s, said from his home in North Carolina, "I haven't seen my paintings since I created them 40 years ago. I never thought I would get them back. I am grateful to Carl for his cooperation and to Penguin for its assistance which made this possible."

Helene M. Freeman of Dorsey & Whitney LLP stated the suit against Ferrero will be withdrawn now that the paintings have been returned.

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Tuesday, February 27, 2007

News: Magnum P. I. 6th Season Available on DVD

Mysteries on TVNew this week on DVD: Magnum P. I.: The Complete 6th Season, starring Tom Selleck as Thomas Magnum.The Prestige on DVD Other cast members include John Hillerman as Jonathan Higgins, Roger E. Mosley as T. C. Calvin, and Larry Manetti as Rick Wright. The series ran for 8 seasons.

Magnum, a former Navy intelligence officer turned private investigator, resides on the estate of never seen Robin Masters on the north shore of Oahu (Hawaii) which was managed by Higgins. T. C. and Rick are Magnum's buddies from Vietnam who help him on his cases.

The 6th season of Magnum P. I. ran for 20 episodes during the 1985/1986 television season on CBS, and opened with a 2-part episode in which Magnum and Higgins travel to London to oversee the opening of Robin Masters' new castle. While there, Magnum investigates the suspicious death of an old friend from Vietnam. 5 discs are included with the DVD set.

Visit the Mysteries on TV website to discover more television mystery series currently available on DVD.

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Monday, February 26, 2007

News: Anna Paquin to Star as Sookie Stackhouse

The Hollywood Reporter is reporting that Anna Paquin, winner of the 1993 Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress in The Piano, has been signed to star in True Blood, a pilot for HBO, based on the Southern Vampire mystery series created by Charlaine Harris. Paquin will play the lead character, Sookie Stackhouse.

All Together Dead by Charlaine HarrisTrue Blood is being written by Alan Ball who will also direct and produce. Ball was most recently executive producer of the television series Six Feet Under, also on HBO. Ryan Kwanten and Sam Trammell have also been cast for the show.

The next book in the Southern Vampire series featuring Sookie Stackhouse, All Together Dead, is scheduled to be published in May, 2007.

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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Mystery Book Review: The Arsenic Labyrinth by Martin Edwards

Mysterious ReviewsMysterious Reviews, mysteries reviewed by the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books, has written our review of The Arsenic Labyrinth by Martin Edwards. For our blog readers, we are printing it first here in advance of its publication on our website.The Arsenic Labyrinthn by Martin Edwards

The Arsenic Labyrinth by Martin Edwards
A Lake District Mystery

Poisoned Pen Press (Hardcover)
ISBN-10: 1-59058-328-0 (1590583280)
ISBN-13: 978-1-59058-328-9 (9781590583289)
Publication Date: January 2007
List Price: $24.95

Synopsis (from the publisher): After 10 years, Guy--a drifter with a taste for deception--has returned to Coniston in England's Lake District. A local journalist, Tony di Venuto, is campaigning to revive interest in the disappearance of Emma Bestwick, and Guy knows what happened to her.

When he tips off the newspaperman that Emma will not be coming home, DCI Hannah Scarlett, head of Cumbria's Cold Case Review Team, re-opens the old investigation. Her enquiries take her to the Museum of Myth and Legend and to the remote and eerie Arsenic Labyrinth--a series of stone tunnels used to remove arsenic from tin ore.

Meanwhile, historian Daniel Kind is immersing himself in the work of John Ruskin, whose neighbors created the Arsenic Labyrinth. A shocking discovery makes it clear to Hannah that there is not one mystery to solve, but two, and she turns to Daniel for help in untangling the secrets of the past. As Hannah and Daniel struggle to resist a growing but dangerous attraction, Guy's plan to make a quick buck runs into trouble, and he has to resort to desperate measures. Someone is determined to kill to keep their secrets safe.

Review: Martin Edward's third mystery set in the Lake District of England, The Arsenic Labyrinth, is at its best in the beautiful descriptions of the region and for creating a moody atmosphere for the characters. The plot, however, is a bit convoluted and the overlapping storylines make it at times difficult to follow.

After reading an article about the 10-year anniversary of the disappearance of Emma Bestwick, Guy Koenig, a man who knows better than to divulge too many secrets, makes an anonymous call to the reporter who wrote the story, stating simply, "Emma Bestwick won't be coming back." This phone call sets into motion a series of events that includes reopening the case by Detective Chief Inspector Hannah Scarlett, who was originally assigned to investigate the missing girl. Independently, historian Daniel Kind is researching the life of John Ruskin, the influential 19th century author, poet, and artist who spent much of his later life in the Lake District. Daniel's reasearch and Hannah's investigation intersect at a series of tunnels beneath the landscape known locally as the Arsenic Labyrinth, culminating in the resolution to the mystery of a young woman's disappearance a decade ago.

Following an intriguing opening chapter, The Arsenic Labyrinth quickly loses its momentum as Edwards sets up the various subplots through alternating points of view. The most interesting of these is that of Guy Koenig, a petty criminal and con man, who plays a pivotal role in the investigation, and, as Hannah considers him, "never had an unselfish impulse in his life". Somewhat ironically, it isn't until after his murder about halfway through that the story regains the traction of its original premise. The startling conclusion, with its disclosure of Guy's true involvement in the disappearance of Emma Bestwick 10 years ago, more than compensates for a slow start to this reflective mystery.

Special thanks to Poisoned Pen Press for providing an ARC of The Arsenic Labyrinth for this review.

Review Copyright © 2007 Hidden Staircase Mystery Books

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Mystery Godoku: Weekly Puzzle for February 26, 2007

Mystery GodokuMystery Godoku Puzzle for February 26, 2007A 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 letters and mystery clue: A E H I K M N R T. She is the author of the horse racing mystery series featuring Steve Cline (9 letters).

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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Saturday, February 24, 2007

Mystery Book Review: Snowman by Dave Saari

Mysterious ReviewsMysterious Reviews, mysteries reviewed by the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books, has written our review of Snowman by Dave Saari. For our blog readers, we are printing it first here in advance of its publication on our website.Snowman by Dave Saari

Snowman by Dave Saari
A Matt Davidson Mystery

Lulu.com (Trade Paperback)
ISBN-10: 1-4303-0563-0 (1430305630)
ISBN-13: 978-1-4303-0563-7 (9781430305637)
Publication Date: January 2007
List Price: $17.46

Synopsis (from the publisher): Matt Davidson, an underachieving golf bum and a somewhat nerdy engineer, inadvertently witnesses a shocking scene while playing golf, which launches him on an adventure that proves to be an emotional roller coaster ride. Though unsure what to do or how to do it, he drops everything to help a stunningly beautiful woman he's never even met. His clumsy efforts soon entangle him in a web of sex, fraud, and abuse that could end up costing him his life.

Review: Dave Saari crafts a story around "an improbable series of eerie coincidences" in Snowman, a murder mystery featuring golfer and sometime businessman Matt Davidson.

The series of events begins on the golf course one afternoon when, while chasing after an errant shot that has landed in the yard of a private home, Matt beholds a most beautiful woman. Not just any woman, but an angel, a goddess, an enchantress. He becomes obsessed with this woman, and in an effort to meet her, to know her, and to be with her, he embarks on a journey of improbable coincidences that will not only jeopardize his career but also his life.

Many readers will likely roll their eyes and immediately identify Matt with Dudley Moore and the mysterious woman with Bo Derek and think Snowman is simply a knock-off of the movie "10". And to be fair, the first third of the book reads like the movie, substituting the beach and the Mexican Riviera for golf courses and Minnesota. Not exactly a captivating exchange.

But then the story gets interesting, and a plot develops that is far better than the opening chapters may initially suggest. An accidental death that may not be what it seems, a complicated property development deal, and connections to a Chicago organization, all make for a rather engrossing mystery. There are some thoughtful plot twists, and Matt's bravado towards the end is a refreshing extension of his character.

Saari writes in a perfunctory, mechanical style that is somewhat incompatible with the character relating his story. Setting the story in Minnesota with its perceived (and no doubt unwarranted) lack of comfort and warmth doesn't help. And the last couple of chapters are far too trite. But as a first effort, and especially as a self-published endeavor without professional assistance, Snowman is an admirable achievement.

Special thanks to Dave Saari for providing a copy of Snowman for this review. Click here to purchase Snowman directly from the author at a special discounted price.

Review Copyright © 2007 Hidden Staircase Mystery Books

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Friday, February 23, 2007

Mystery Bestsellers for February 23, 2007

Mystery BestsellersA list of the top ten mystery hardcover bestsellers for the week ending February 23, 2007 has been posted on the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books website.

Innocent in Death by J. D. RobbJust edging out Step on a Crack (James Patterson) for the top spot at Barnes&Noble.com is the latest from J. D. Robb in the "In Death" series, Innocent in Death, the 24th mystery featuring NYPD Lieutenant Eve Dallas. The book lands in second place at Amazon.com, though by a very slim margin. The death of a history teacher, whose packed lunch was tainted with deadly ricin, shocks his colleagues. But they have some shocking secrets of their own. It's Eve's job to get a feel for all the potential suspects, and find out why someone would have done this to a man who seemed so inoffensive, so pleasant, so innocent. When another man turns up dead, the case begins to take some strange turns and hitting some frustrating dead ends. Eve knows all too well that innocence can be a facade. Keeping that in mind may help her solve this case at last.

Other new entries on the Barnes&Noble.com list include Puss 'n Cahoots by Rita Mae Brown, the 14th mystery in the Mrs. Murphy series, and Death of a Maid by M. C. Beaton, the 23rd Hamish MacBeth mystery. Mysterious Reviews will have a review of Death of a Maid on its website next week.

Be sure to check out our new, updated Mystery Bestsellers aStore to purchase any of the bestselling mysteries featured on our website!

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News: Sara Paretsky to Speak at Library of Congress

News from the Library of Congress: Best-Selling Mystery Writer Sara Paretsky To Speak on Feb. 27.

What do basketball, a discount superstore, two runaway teenagers and an explosion that screams of foul play have in common? They are just a sampling of the twists and turns found in the latest mystery thriller by Sara Paretsky.

She will discuss and sign her most recent book, Fire Sale, at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 27, in the Montpelier Room on the sixth floor of the James Madison Building, 101 Independence Ave., S.E., Washington, D.C.

The program, which marks the 25th anniversary of the debut of Paretsky’s fictional private detective V.I. Warshawski and the 20th anniversary of the Sisters in Crime organization, is part of the Books & Beyond author series sponsored by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress. Free and open to the public, the program requires no reservations or tickets.

Read more on this event on the Library of Congress website here.

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Thursday, February 22, 2007

News: Keanu Reeves to Star in The Night Watchman

Variety is reporting that Fox Searchlight and New Regency will co-produce The Night Watchman, a screenplay scripted by mystery author James Ellroy, and directed by David Ayer. The film will star Keanu Reeves portraying a cop who's always done what was needed to solve homicides and crack down on gang violence until he realizes that he can't play by his own dirty rules anymore, and that he may not be very effective in his job as a result. Filming is expected to begin in April.

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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Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Mystery Book Review: The Watchman by Robert Crais

Mysterious ReviewsMysterious Reviews, mysteries reviewed by the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books, has written our review of The Watchman by Robert Crais. For our blog readers, we are printing it first here in advance of its publication on our website.The Watchman by Robert Crais

The Watchman by Robert Crais
A Joe Pike Mystery

Simon & Schuster (Hardcover)
ISBN-10: 0-7432-8163-2 (0743281632)
ISBN-13: 978-0-7432-8163-8 (9780943281638)
Publication Date: February 2007
List Price: $25.95

Synopsis (from the publisher): When the U. S. Marshals and the finest private security firm that money can buy can't protect Larkin Conner Barkley from the men who want her dead, her wealthy family hires the one man money can't buy to protect their daughter - Joe Pike. Joe owes a bad man a favor, and the favor is to protect Larkin, a spoiled, self-centered, rich girl who happens to be a federal witness in a case the feds are putting together to bust a crime cartel linking organized mobsters and West Coast industrialists. And when Pike learns that the man he'll be working for is one of his oldest and most trusted friends - his former LAPD training officer, Bud Flynn - Pike signs on and commits himself to protecting the girl's life.

But Pike and the girl immediately come under intense fire, and Pike realizes that someone is leaking information that could get them both killed. Turning to his friend Elvis Cole for help, Pike's investigation soon reveals a web of lies and deceptions, half-truths and betrayals, and the stunning revelation that even the cops are not who they seem.

Review: Robert Crais, author of the Elvis Cole mysteries, takes Cole's partner Joe Pike and presents him center stage in The Watchman, a perfect vehicle for this cryptic and inscrutable character. Cole himself plays an important, though clearly subordinate, role in the book.

Larkin Conner lives the life of a billionaire's daughter. Think Paris Hilton, but sober and with a conscience. One night while returning home, she accidentally hits a car, injuring its passengers. Before she can call for help, the driver speeds off and a man in the back seat disappears down a nearby alley. Fast forward several days and The Watchman opens with Larkin under the protection of Joe Pike and running for her life. Pike's assignment is to keep Larking alive at all costs, and trusting no one, he takes refuge in a safe house, the location of which is known only to Pike, Larkin, and Elvis Cole. As Pike and Cole try to figure out why Larkin is a target, they realize that essentially everyone claiming to want to protect her is hiding behind a facade, withholding information that will save her.

Crais vividly portrays the primary characters in The Watchman, imparting into each unique and readily identifiable features. Yet Joe Pike remains largely an enigma. Methodical, thoughtful, intelligent, analytical, determined, meticulous, all surely describe Joe Pike. Yet he defies a visual identity in the reader's mind. Ask ten people to describe Pike after reading The Watchman, and there will be ten distinct answers. That Crais can create such a well-defined character and keep him virtually anonymous is truly remarkable.

Though the plot could have been overly complicated, Crais wisely chooses to keep it relatively simple. Pike is clearly mystified by the actions of everyone involved, but he keeps coming back to the basic question before him: Why is Larkin a target? The answer this simple question not only makes his task of keeping her alive that much more achievable, but provides clarity to other inconsistencies in this case as the pieces of the puzzle fall into place.

The Watchman is an outstanding example of a mystery thriller, and will certainly be remembered as one of the year's best novels.

Special thanks to FSB Associates for providing an ARC of The Watchman for this review.

Review Copyright © 2007 Hidden Staircase Mystery Books

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News: Reviewer's Choice Awards Nominees Announced

Romantic Times BOOKreviews magazine has announced its nominees for the Reviewers' Choice Awards recognizing the best in women's fiction, romance, mystery, fantasy and more for 2006.

For the mystery categories, the nominees are: (a link on the book's title indicates a review was written by Mysterious Reviews)

• Amateur Sleuth

UNPLUGGED
Lois Greiman
Dell (February 2006)

STEAMED
Jessica Conant-Park and Susan Conant
Berkley Prime Crime (March 2006)

DEFINITELY DEAD
Charlaine Harris
Ace (May 2006)

ANTIQUES ROADKILL
Barbara Allan
Kensington (August 2006)

ALL MORTAL FLESH
Julia Spencer-Fleming
St. Martin's Minotaur (October 2006)

SIZE 14 IS NOT FAT EITHER
Meg Cabot
Avon Trade (December 2006)

• Contemporary Mystery

DIRTY BLONDE
Lisa Scottoline
HarperCollins (March 2006)

TWO LITTLE GIRLS IN BLUE
Mary Higgins Clark
Simon and Schuster (April 2006)

THE LAST SPYMASTER
Gayle Lynds
St. Martin's (June 2006)

SNOW BLIND
P. J. Tracy
Putnam (August 2006)

KIDNAPPED
Jan Burke
Simon and Schuster (October 2006)

KEEPER OF THE KEYS
Perri O'Shaughnessy
Delacorte (November 2006)

• First Mystery

BLOWN AWAY
Shane Gericke
Pinnacle (May 2006)

A FIELD OF DARKNESS
Cornelia Read
Mysterious Press (May 2006)

SEQUENCE
Lori Andrews
St. Martin's Minotaur (June 2006)

THE INTERPRETATION OF MURDER
Jed Rubenfeld
Henry Holt (September 2006

• Historical Mystery

MARK OF THE LION
Suzanne M. Arruda
NAL (January 2006)

NORTH BY NORTHANGER
Carrie Bebris
Forge (March 2006)

TOMB OF THE GOLDEN BIRD
Elizabeth Peters
William Morrow (April 2006)

DARK ASSASSIN
Anne Perry
Ballantine (April 2006)

• P. I. / Procedural Novel

THE FINISHING SCHOOL
Michele Martinez
Morrow (January 2006)

THE ART OF DETECTION
Laurie R. King
Bantam (June 2006)

END IN TEARS
Ruth Rendell
Crown (July 2006)

THE MEPHISTO CLUB
Tess Gerritsen
Ballantine (September 2006)

• Suspense

WRONG PLACE, WRONG TIME
Andrea Kane
Morrow (January 2006)

GONE
Lisa Gardner
Bantam (February 2006)

THE CRIMSON CODE
Rachel Lee
Mira (February 2006)

THE KILL
Allison Brennan
Ballantine (March 2006)

PRIOR BAD ACTS
Tami Hoag
Bantam (April 2006)

COPYCAT
Erica Spindler
Mira (June 2006)

KITTY GOES TO WASHINGTON
Carrie Vaughn
Aspect (July 2006)

Winners will be listed in the June 7th issue of Romantic Times BOOKreviews, just prior to the 24th Annual Booklovers Convention in Houston, Texas, April 25 to 29, 2007.

For previous winners, visit The Reviewers' Choice Award page on the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books website.

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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Monday, February 19, 2007

News: The Prestige Available This Week on DVD

Mysteries on DVDNew this week on DVD: The Prestige, starring Hugh Jackman, Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Scarlett Johansson, and David Bowie, will be released tomorrow, February 20th. The movie is based on The Prestige by Christopher Priest, published by St. Martin's Press in 1986.The Prestige on DVD A paperback edition was released last October. In its review of the book, Publishers Weekly stated, "... a complex tale that must have been extremely difficult to tell in exactly the right sequence, while still maintaining a series of shocks to the very end. Priest has brought it off with great imagination and skill."

Also available in high-definition: The Prestige: Blu-ray Disc.

Information on both the book and the movie is available from Mysteries on DVD: The Prestige.

Visit the Mysteries on DVD website to discover more movies that have been adapted from mystery books. Also visit our latest website, Mysteries on TV, to purchase television mystery series available on DVD.

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Mystery Godoku: Weekly Puzzle for February 19, 2007

Mystery GodokuMystery Godoku Puzzle for February 19, 2007A 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 letters and mystery clue: A B C E N O R Y Z. The Nameless Detective has two mysteries to solve in the 26th book in the series by Bill Pronzini (9 letters).

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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Saturday, February 17, 2007

Mystery Book Review: The Commission by Michael Norman

Mysterious ReviewsMysterious Reviews, mysteries reviewed by the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books, has written our review of The Commission by Michael Norman. For our blog readers, we are printing it first here in advance of its publication on our website.The Commission by Michael Norman

The Commission by Michael Norman
A Sam Kincaid Mystery

Poisoned Pen Press (Hardcover)
ISBN-10: 1-59058-358-2 (1590583582)
ISBN-13: 978-1-59058-358-6 (9781590583586)
Publication Date: February 2007
List Price: $24.95

Synopsis (from the publisher): Levi Vogue, Chairman of the powerful Utah Board of Pardons and Parole, is gunned down in the driveway of his home as he returns from a late evening tryst with Sue Ann Winkler, an exotic dancer employed in a Salt Lake City strip club.

Sam Kincaid, Chief of the Special Investigations Branch (SIB) of the Utah Department of Corrections, is assigned to help Salt Lake City Police Department homicide detective Lt. Kate McConnell solve Vogue's murder.

The investigation soon leads Kincaid and McConnell into the seedy world of prostitution and strip clubs. Ultimately, the investigation focuses on Charles (Slick) Watts, a violent ex-convict with a long criminal history and a score to settle with Levi Vogue. But before Watts can be apprehended, his body is discovered at an abandoned military base in Wendover, Nevada.

When the medical examiner concludes that Watt's death was a homicide elaborately staged to look like a suicide, Kincaid and McConnell are forced to turn their attention to a complex conspiracy behind the murders.

Ultimately, the investigation leads Kincaid and McConnell inside the Utah state prison to a small group of corrupt prison employees known as the Commission. As the police close in, Commission members turn, first on each other, and then on Kincaid.

Review: Michael Norman introduces a rather unique character in the annals of police procedurals, Sam Kincaid, Chief of the Special Investigations Branch of the Utah Department of Corrections, based in Salt Lake City, in The Commission. This is not a typical job description, and it makes for a unique and largely successful approach to this genre of mystery fiction.

Following the execution-style murder of Levi Vogue, the chairman of the Utah Pardons and Paroles board, Kincaid is asked to assist in the investigation. Despite the outward appearance of being an upstanding citizen of the community, Kincaid soon discovers that Vogue had a darker side. The convoluted trail ultimately leads to a rogue group of prison employees called The Commission who administer their own brand of justice to those whom they deem deserve it.

The primary appeal of The Commission is in the character of Sam Kincaid. Norman writes in a relaxed, almost folksy first person narrative that suits the principal character well. As a police procedural, the reader is taken step-by-step through the investigative process and participates with Kincaid in the unfolding investigation. The story is competently plotted, and serves well as an introduction to a new series.

However, there are a few stylistic flaws which mar this otherwise strong debut that could have, and should have, been corrected during another round of editing. Excepting the prologue that sets up the murder of Vogue, Norman uses first person narrative for the first third of the book. Then, suddenly, there's an italicized passage that presages danger for Kincaid. It's jarring and unnecessary. Following this, and with increasing frequency, Norman scatters third person narrative sections that seem to have been inserted after the completion of the book. It's as if he thought that additional explanation was needed and tossed in a paragraph or two to help fill in some blank spots. Without exception, each of these sections could have been rewritten from Kincaid's perspective, providing a smooth, cohesive narrative throughout.

Special thanks to Poisoned Pen Press for providing an ARC of The Commission for this review.

Review Copyright © 2007 Hidden Staircase Mystery Books

Visit for other reviews of current and upcoming mystery books. The is committed to providing readers and collectors of with the best and most current information about their favorite authors, titles, and series.

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Mystery Bestsellers for February 16, 2007

Mystery BestsellersA list of the top ten mystery hardcover bestsellers for the week ending February 16, 2007 has been posted on the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books website.

There's something of a divergence in the lists this week, with a bit of shuffling of bestsellers at Amazon.com and the introduction of three new bestsellers at Barnes&Noble.com. Both lists have James Patterson's latest mystery, Step on a Crack, at the top of their lists.

Key Lime Pie Murder by Joanne FlukeNew mysteries this week include Key Lime Pie Murder, the 8th entry in the Hannah Swensen mystery series. It's Tri-County fair time and Lake Eden, Minnesota, and it promises to be a busy week for Hannah Swensen. Not only is she whipping up treats for the chamber of commerce booth at the fair; she's also judging the baking contest; acting as a magician's assistant for her business partner's husband; trying to coax Moishe, her previously rapacious feline, to end his hunger strike, and performing her own private carnival act by juggling the demands of her mother and sisters. Moments before the fair closes one night she realizes that she's not alone among the shuttered booths and looming carnival attractions. She goes snooping, only to discover Willa Sunquist, a student teacher and fellow bake contest judge, dead alongside an upended key lime pie. But who would want to kill Willa and why? As fair week draws to a close, Hannah cranks up the heat, hoping that the killer will get rattled and make a mistake. If that happens she intends to be there, even if it means getting on a carnival ride that could very well be her last. As with all mysteries in this series, the book includes 12 original recipes for you to try.

Be sure to check out our new, updated Mystery Bestsellers aStore to purchase any of the bestselling mysteries featured on our website!

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