Wednesday, June 30, 2010

A&E Orders Crime Drama Breakout Kings

A&E TV

Earlier this year we reported that Fox was interested in the crime drama Breakout Kings, but ultimately passed on it. Now The Hollywood Reporter is reporting that A&E has ordered 13 episodes of the series. Described as "an unconventional partnership between the U.S. Marshals' office and a group of convicts", the series stars Laz Alonso and Domenick Lombardozzi as veteran marshals who use former fugitives to catch fugitives.

Production is expected to begin this fall in Toronto with a 2011 series premiere.

MBN Welcomes Karin Slaughter, Author of the Grant County Mysteries

Mystery Books News: Authors on Tour

Mystery Books News is thrilled to welcome Karin Slaughter as our guest blogger. Karin is the author of Broken (Delacorte Press, June 2010 Hardcover, 978-0-385-34197-4), the 8th mystery in the Grant County series but also featuring Will Trent, who she introduced in her 2006 mystery Triptych.

Today, Karin writes about her characters, and how they've changed and evolved through the series. And she's also providing our readers with an opportunity to win a copy of her book. Visit Mystery Book Contests, click on the "Karin Slaughter: Broken" contest link, enter your name, e-mail address, and this code (6071) for a chance to win! (One entry per person; contest ends July 14, 2010.)

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Karin Slaughter
Photo by Alison Rosa, provided courtesy of Karin Slaughter

While many people deride “formula fiction,” the only formula I think writers need to stick to is to tell a better story with each new book. With Broken, I hope I’ve managed to do that. The story combines my two series, Will Trent and Grant County. In Undone, my last novel, Sara Linton was in Will Trent’s world, but with Broken

In her defense, Lena has changed a lot since Blindsighted, my first novel, but there are still parts of her personality that are the same. She’s older now, more introspective and working less by gut instinct and more by slow deliberation. Lena has always been a character who wants above all to do a good job. Unfortunately, she’s also prone to taking shortcuts. Sometimes, these shortcuts mean that other people get hurt. In the beginning of the story, she takes one that endangers her fellow cops and puts her squarely in the center of Will Trent’s investigation.

It’s actually Sara Linton who calls Will into town. She thinks that she’s finally found a way to send Lena to jail for her willful pigheadedness. Sara is home for the first time in four years, visiting with her family for the Thanksgiving holiday. Sara has changed, too, and we really see that as she interacts with her family. Some of the light-heartedness is gone, and I think of all the characters, the title of the book, Broken

Caught between these two women is Will Trent. He’s really the anchor of the book, the only narrator the reader can rely on. Despite having secrets of his own, he seems to be the most centered character. He’s already figured out his place in the world, no matter how tenuous the hold. Through Will, both Sara and Lena learn how to move on in their lives. I think at the end of the day, that’s the one thing I love most about the crime fiction “formula.” No matter what happens in the book, you know that the characters will carry on.

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Karin is a long-time resident of Atlanta, where she splits her time between the kitchen and the living room. Visit her website at KarinSlaughter.com.

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Broken by Karin Slaughter
More information about the book

About Broken: When Special Agent Will Trent arrives in Grant County, he finds a police department determined to protect its own and far too many unanswered questions about a prisoner’s death. He doesn’t understand why Officer Lena Adams is hiding secrets from him. He doesn’t understand her role in the death of Grant County’s popular police chief. He doesn’t understand why that man’s widow, Dr. Sara Linton, needs him now more than ever to help her crack this case.

While the police force investigates the murder of a young woman pulled from a frigid lake, Trent investigates the police force, putting pressure on Adams just when she’s already about to crack. Caught between two complicated and determined women, trying to understand Linton’s passionate distrust of Adams, the facts surrounding Chief Tolliver’s death, and the complexities of this insular town, Trent will unleash a case filled with explosive secrets—and encounter a thin blue line that could be murderous if crossed.

For a chance to win a copy of Broken, courtesy of Authors on the Web, visit Mystery Book Contests, click on the "Karin Slaughter: Broken" contest link, and enter your name, e-mail address, and this code (6071) in the entry form. (One entry per person; contest ends July 14, 2010.)

Escape Whisper Valley, a New Game of Mystery from BFG

Games of Mystery

Games of Mystery is pleased to announce the availability of a new mystery casual game from Big Fish Games released today and available to BFG Club members. You can find out more about these games by visiting our Mystery Games: Big Fish Download Games page or by clicking on the links provided below.

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Escape Whisper Valley
Escape Whisper Valley

A sudden rockslide has left you trapped in Whisper Valley, an abandoned mountain village. Can you piece together the clues that will lead you back home? Explore intricate locations and track down hidden objects, solve puzzles and collect fragments of a map that will help you find your way home and make it past the obstacles in your way. Locate the hidden locks and keys in every scene to unlock two bonus game modes. Plan your escape today!

See also the other game in this series, Escape Rosecliff Island.

Escape Whisper Valley may be downloaded and purchased for $6.99 with a Big Fish Game Club membership. A demonstration version (39.44 MB) may be downloaded and played for free for one hour.

Watch a preview video below:

Get any standard game for $6.99 with a Big Fish Game Club membership. Other benefits include the $2.99 Daily Deal, Tomorrow's Game Today, and special member rewards. And if you purchase any 6 games within a single month, you earn a free game with the Big Fish Game Club Monthly Punch Card! (Collector's Editions earn 3 punches each, half-way towards your free game!)

Read Ms. Terri's reviews of the adventure and casual mystery games featured on this site, including Midnight Mysteries: The Edgar Allan Poe Conspiracy, Nancy Drew Dossier: Lights, Camera, Curses!, Enlightenus, and many more!

Big Fish Games: Bestsellers

Big Fish Games: New releases

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Games of Mystery is your source for mystery-themed video, electronic, and board games, parties for kids and adults, and murder mystery weekends and mystery getaway vacations!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Agents of Treachery by Otto Penzler, editor (Anthology Review)

Mysterious Reviews: Mystery, Suspense, Thriller and Crime Novel Reviews, edited by the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books

Review of Agents of Treachery by Otto Penzler, editor

In editor Otto Penzler's introduction to Agents of Treachery, he writes that a collection of original stories devoted to espionage thriller or international adventure has never been published. Well, now it has. Some of the genre's best have contributed short stories to this collection, including Lee Child, Joseph Finder, Stephen Hunter, and many more.

Read the full text of our review at Mysterious Reviews.

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Agents of Treachery by Otto Penzler, editor
Buy Agents of Treachery by Otto Penzler, editor

Agents of Treachery
Otto Penzler, editor
Spy Fiction Anthology

Vintage Crime (Trade Paperback)
ISBN-10: 0-307-47751-7 (0307477517)
ISBN-13: 978-0-307-47751-4 (9780307477514)
Publication Date: June 2010
List Price: $15.95

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Mysterious Reviews is your source for the latest mystery, suspense, thriller, and crime novel reviews, edited by the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books.

Path of the Wicked by Jennifer Stanley (Book Review)

Mysterious Reviews: Mystery, Suspense, Thriller and Crime Novel Reviews, edited by the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books

Review of Path of the Wicked by Jennifer Stanley

Cooper Lee's church group volunteers to deliver meals to the needy in Richmond, a worthy cause indeed. But when the recipients begin dying, Cooper wonders if one of them is a ruthless killer in The Path of the Wicked, the second mystery in this series by Jennifer Stanley.

Read the full text of our review at Mysterious Reviews.

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Path of the Wicked by Jennifer Stanley
Buy Path of the Wicked by Jennifer Stanley

Path of the Wicked

A Hope Street Church Mystery

St. Martin's Minotaur (Mass Market Paperback)
ISBN-10: 0-312-37683-9 (0312376839)
ISBN-13: 978-0-312-37683-9 (9780312376839)
Publication Date: April 2010
List Price: $7.99

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Mysterious Reviews is your source for the latest mystery, suspense, thriller, and crime novel reviews, edited by the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books.

Never Tell a Lie by Hallie Ephron Wins David Award for Best Mystery Novel

Mystery Book Awards: The Edgars, The Agathas, The Anthonys, and many more.

This past weekend, Deadly Ink held its annual mystery conference during which it announced that the novel Never Tell a Lie by Hallie Ephron was the winner of the David Award for best mystery. Attendees to the conference voted to determine the winning book.

The award was presented by Lauren and Rachael Williamson, granddaughters of David G. Sasher, Sr., in whose honor the award is named, at the Saturday evening banquet.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Film Adaptation of The Oxford Murders by Guillermo Martínez Finally Coming to US

The Oxford Murders by Guillermo Martinez
More information about the book

Here's an interesting bit of news, also from a few days ago. Bloody Disgusting is reporting that at long last, the film adaptation of The Oxford Murders by Guillermo Martínez may finally be seen in the US.

Directed by Alex de la Iglesia, the film stars Elijah Wood, John Hurt, and Leonor Watling and was first released in the author's native Spain in early 2008.

According to the article, the movie will first be available as video-on-demand starting next week (July 2nd) following by a theater release in August.

We reviewed The Oxford Murders in 2007, calling it "an intellectual mystery that is reminiscent of a Sherlock Holmes pastiche in both character and style." (Read our full review at Mysterious Reviews.)

Watch the film's trailer below.

About The Oxford Murders (from the publisher): On a summer’s day in Oxford, a young Argentine mathematics student finds his landlady – an elderly woman who helped decipher the Enigma Code during World War II – murdered in her house. Meanwhile, leading Oxford mathematician Arthur Seldom receives an anonymous note bearing a circle and the words, “the first of the series,” and a mystery is born.

Murders begin to pile up – an old man on life-support is found dead with needle punctures in his throat; a percussionist at Blenheim Palace dies before the audience’s very eyes – seemingly unconnected except for notes appearing in the math department, for the attention of Seldom.

Seldom guesses that the murders might relate to his latest book, an unexpected best-seller about the parallels between investigations of serial killers and certain mathematical theorems. As he and the young student are drawn further into the game, it is up to mentor and student to solve the puzzle before the killer strikes again.

First Official Trailer for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling
More information about the book

Earlier this month a short, commercial-length trailer for the film Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Part One) aired on MTV. Today, the first official full-length trailer for the film was released by Warner Bros.

Based on the seventh and final novel in the Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling, the film is being released in 3D in two parts: the first this November 19th with the second next July 15th.

Watch the trailer below.

About Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (from the publisher): It all comes down to this -- a final faceoff between good and evil. You plan to pull out all the stops, but every time you solve one mystery, three more evolve. Do you stay the course you started, despite your lack of progress? Do you detour and follow a new lead that may not help? Do you listen to your instincts, or your friends?

Lord Voldemort is preparing for battle and so must Harry. With Ron and Hermione at his side, he's trying to hunt down Voldemort's Horcruxes, escape danger at every turn, and find a way to defeat evil once and for all. How does it all end?

TNT to Develop Series based on Craig Johnson's Sheriff Walt Longmire

Junkyard Dogs by Craig Johnson
More information about the book

Here's a news tidbit from a few days ago that we missed! Craig Johnson writes on the Penguin Blog that Warner Horizon Television and TNT are developing a crime drama based on his mystery series character, Wyoming Sheriff Walt Longmire.

When asked who he thought should play the tough but tender sheriff, Johnson, who has been retained as a creative consultant, replied, "Gary Cooper ... but he's not returning our calls."

We recently read our first Walt Longmire mystery, Junkyard Dogs, the sixth in the series, and were blown away, calling it "one of the year's best conceived and written, most entertaining mysteries." (Read our full review at Mysterious Reviews.) We think Walt Longmire would make for a terrific television series character.

About Junkyard Dogs (from the publisher): It's a volatile new economy in Durant, Wyoming, where the owners of a multi-million dollar development of ranchettes want to get rid of the adjacent junk-yard. When a severed thumb is discovered in the yard, conflicts erupt, and Walt Longmire, his trusty companion Dog, life-long friend Henry Standing Bear, and deputies Santiago Saizarbitoria and Victoria Moretti find themselves in a small town that feels more and more like a high plains pressure cooker.

Nancy Drew: Trail of the Twister, New for Windows PC

Nancy Drew: Trail of the Twister
Buy Nancy Drew: Trail of the Twister

Tomorrow, Tuesday June 29th, Her Interactive releases the 22nd entry in the popular Nancy Drew mystery series of adventure games, Trail of the Twister.

$100,000,000 is at stake in a competition to discover a formula to predict tornado touchdowns! Nancy Drew travels to Oklahoma during tornado season and goes undercover when equipment starts failing and crew members are injured. You as Nancy Drew, must join the team to keep them in the competition. Is it just bad luck that's plaguing the storm chasers or is someone sabotaging their chances of winning.

Nancy Drew: Trail of the Twister is ESRB rated E for Everyone (comic mischief and mild violence).

Her Interactive has also launched a companion website, TrailoftheTwister.com, with background information for the game.

For a list of all Nancy Drew games in this series, plus others available on the Nintendo DS and Wii as well as available for immediate download, visit our Games of Mystery: Nancy Drew site.

Watch the official trailer for the game below.

Film Rights Optioned for the Sigma Force Thrillers by James Rollins

Sandstorm (Sigma Force) by James Rollins
More information about the book

The Hollywood Reporter blog Risky Business is reporting that Martha and Dino De Laurentiis have acquired the film rights to the Sigma Force series of thrillers by James Rollins. The first in the series, Sandstorm, was published in 2004; the next in the series, The Devil Colony, publishes this August.

“The ‘Sigma Force’ series is rich with complex characters and thrilling action plots,” said De Laurentiis, “and we can’t wait to turn this treasure trove of amazing stories into a great film franchise.”

Though the characters will be taken from the series, it is expected that a new storyline will be written for the film, rather than adapting one of the existing novels.

About Sandstorm (from the publisher): An inexplicable explosion rocks the antiquities collection of a London museum -- a devastating blast that sets off alarms in clandestine organizations around the world, as the race begins to determine how it happened, why it happened, and what it means.

Lady Kara Kensington's family paid a high price in money and blood to found the gallery that now lies in ruins. And her search for answers is about to lead Kara and her friend Safia al-Maaz, the gallery's brilliant and beautiful curator, into a world they never dreamed actually existed. For new evidence exposed by the tragedy suggests that Ubar, a lost city buried beneath the Arabian desert, is more than mere legend ... and that something astonishing is waiting there.

Two extraordinary women and their guide, the international adventurer Omaha Dunn, are not the only ones being drawn to the desert. Former U.S. Navy SEAL Painter Crowe, a covert government operative and head of an elite counterespionage team, is hunting down a dangerous turncoat, Crowe's onetime partner, to retrieve the vital information she has stolen. And the trail is pointing him toward Ubar.

But the many perils inherent in a death-defying trek deep into the savage heart of the Arabian Peninsula pale before the nightmarish secrets to be unearthed at journey's end. What is hidden below the sand is more than a valuable relic of ancient history. It is an ageless power that lives and breathes -- an awesome force that could create a utopia or tear down everything humankind has built during millennia of civilization. Many lives have already been destroyed by ruthless agencies dedicated to guarding its mysteries and harnessing its might. And now the end may be at hand for Safia, for Kara, for Crowe, and for all the interlopers who wish to expose its mysteries, as it prepares to unleash the most terrible storm of all ...

The Mystery of the Crystal Portal is BFG's Catch of the Week

Games of Mystery

Games of Mystery is pleased to provide our readers with current promotions that offer discounts or other incentives for purchasing mystery-themed products and services.

Below is a special offer we recently received that may be of interest to you.

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Starting today, Monday June 28th, through Sunday, July 4th, Big Fish Game's Catch of the Week is The Mystery of the Crystal Portal. Simply use coupon code CATCH299 at checkout to purchase this game for only $2.99.

In The Mystery of the Crystal Portal, you will embark on a brain-bending adventure that's full of unique hidden object fun! Journalist Nicole Rankwist has always been close to her archaeologist father. When her father goes missing, Nicole knows she has to find him. After all, he had apparently just made a discovery that could "change the course of humanity."Join Nicole as she searches the globe on a quest to find her father and discover the truth behind the Crystal Portal.

Featuring innovative hidden object gameplay, an intriguing storyline, stunning full-screen graphics and more, The Mystery of the Crystal Portal is a thrilling escape.

Also available: The Mystery of the Crystal Portal Game Walkthrough.

Find more (regularly priced) mystery games to download on our BFG Adventure Games and BFG Hidden Object Games pages.

The Mystery of the Crystal Portal (BFG Catch of the Week)

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Games of Mystery is your source for mystery-themed video, electronic, and board games, parties for kids and adults, and murder mystery weekends and mystery getaway vacations!

The Closer and Van Der Valk Mysteries, New This Week on DVD

Mysteries on TV

Mysteries on TV, your source for the most complete selection of detective, amateur sleuth, private investigator, and suspense television mystery series now available or coming soon to DVD or Blu-ray disc, is profiling one series being released this week.

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Information on The Closer: Season Five

At work, L.A. Deputy Chief Brenda Johnson is a woman in charge. Got a suspect to grill, a case to crack, a murderer about to walk? Call Brenda in and watch the fireworks. But at home...well, that’s another story.

Kyra Sedgwick stars as , a crime drama that combines heart, humor and homicide into a show that’s equally compelling as a police procedural and a personal drama. As a cop, Brenda takes on everything from a corpse that comes COD to a serial killer to Sharon Raydor, an internal affairs officer as tough as she is. As a civilian, Brenda loses one family member and gains another: her surly niece Charlie. Brenda can outsmart, outmaneuver and out a killer. But can she handle a teenager?

The The Closer: Season Five DVD set of 4 discs contain the 15 episodes that aired from June through August with season concluding episodes in December 2009 on TNT.

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Information on Van der Valk Mysteries: Set Two

Nothing electrifies Amsterdam cop Commissaris Simon "Piet" van der Valk (played by Barry Foster) like a new murder case in the second season of , based on characters created in the crime novels by Nicholas Freeling.

Once on the trail, the dapper detective goes by his instincts, not by the book. His investigations lead him into all corners of the Dutch capital, from the immigrant bars and apartments of the low-rent district to the boardrooms and deluxe hotels of the high and mighty.

Although he seems more than a little jaded, Van der Valk receives assistance from the eager Inspecteur Johnny Kroon (Michael Latimer) and indulgence from his ever-supportive French wife, Arlette (Susan Travers). And while he’s more likely to be at a pub than dealing with the political fallout of his cases, there’s never any doubt about his devotion to his job, nor the lengths to which he’ll go in his headlong pursuit to catch a killer.

The Van der Valk Mysteries: Set Two DVD set of 2 discs that contain the 7 episodes that originally aired on ITV from August through October 1973.

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Visit our Mysteries on TV website to discover more television mystery series currently available on DVD and Blu-ray disc.

Journey of Hope, a New Game of Mystery from BFG

Games of Mystery

Games of Mystery is pleased to announce the availability of a new mystery casual game from Big Fish Games released today and available to BFG Club members. You can find out more about these games by visiting our Mystery Games: Big Fish Download Games page or by clicking on the links provided below.

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Journey of Hope
Journey of Hope

Jade Pearce has grown up in the shadow of her father, a world famous archeologist. When he turns up missing, though, it's up to her to find him before it's too late. Since Jade's beauty and intelligence will only get her so far, she needs your help finding and deciphering the trail of clues her father left in his desperate wake. Explore exotic locations, find hidden objects and solve clever puzzles in this breathtaking adventure to the unknown!

Journey of Hope may be downloaded and purchased for $6.99 with a Big Fish Game Club membership. A demonstration version (163.55 MB) may be downloaded and played for free for one hour.

Watch a preview video below:

Get any standard game for $6.99 with a Big Fish Game Club membership. Other benefits include the $2.99 Daily Deal, Tomorrow's Game Today, and special member rewards. And if you purchase any 6 games within a single month, you earn a free game with the Big Fish Game Club Monthly Punch Card! (Collector's Editions earn 3 punches each, half-way towards your free game!)

Read Ms. Terri's reviews of the adventure and casual mystery games featured on this site, including Midnight Mysteries: The Edgar Allan Poe Conspiracy, Nancy Drew Dossier: Lights, Camera, Curses!, Enlightenus, and many more!

Big Fish Games: Bestsellers

Big Fish Games: New releases

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Games of Mystery is your source for mystery-themed video, electronic, and board games, parties for kids and adults, and murder mystery weekends and mystery getaway vacations!

Mystery Godoku Puzzle for June 28, 2010

A new has been created by the editors of the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books and is now 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!).

Mystery Godoku Puzzle for June 28, 2010

This week's letters and mystery clue:

A E H I L N O S T

This romantic thriller by Lora Leigh was the 21st in "The Breeds" series. (9 letters).

We now have two weeks of our puzzles on one page in PDF format for easier printing. Print this week's puzzle here.

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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