Thursday, November 01, 2012

Firsts on the 1st: New Series Characters Being Introduced in November 2012 Mysteries

Mystery Books for November 2012 featuring New Series Characters

The Hidden Staircase Mystery Books recently updated its list of November 2012 hardcover mysteries as well as shelved new November paperbacks on The Mystery Bookshelf.

In this series of monthly posts, which we call Firsts on the 1st, we're introducing readers to new series characters who will make their mysterious American debut in print during November.

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Where Angels Rest by Kate Brady
Print and/or Kindle EditionApple iBook

Title: Where Angels Rest
Author: Kate Brady
Series Character: Nick Mann
Formats: Mass Market Paperback and ebook

What we know about the character: Nick Mann is a sheriff in rural Ohio.

His first case: For the past decade, psychologist Erin Sims has been helping victims of violent crimes move on with life … but the one person she can't save is the one who matters most. In only seven days, her brother will be executed for a murder he didn't commit. Convinced she knows the identity of the real killer, Erin is determined to find the man and bring him to justice.

Sheriff Nick Mann moved to rural Ohio hoping to forget the tragedies of his past. When Erin shows up in town, bringing scandal and unwanted media attention with her, Nick knows she's trouble. No one believes sleepy Hopewell could harbor a serial killer … until residents begin to disappear. Now as Nick untangles the dark secrets plaguing his town, he can't help falling for the beautiful woman with the warm heart and iron will. And, as the days tick by, the truth becomes clear: Erin is hunting a vicious murderer — one whose only escape is to silence her forever.

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A Drop of Chinese Blood by James Church
Print and/or Kindle EditionApple iBook

Title: A Drop of Chinese Blood
Author: James Church
Series Character: Major Bing
Formats: Hardcover and ebook

What we know about the character: Major Bing, the chief of the Chinese Ministry of State Security operations on the border with North Korea, is Inspector O's (the author's other series character) nephew.

His first case: The last place Bing expected to find the stunningly beautiful Madame Fang — a woman Headquarters wants closely watched — was on his front doorstep. Then, as suddenly as she shows up, Madame Fang mysteriously disappears across the river into North Korea, leaving in her wake both consternation and a highly sensitive assignment for Bing to bring back from the North a long missing Chinese security official.

Concerned for his nephew's safety, O reluctantly helps him navigate an increasingly complex and deadly maze, one that leads down the twisted byways of O's homeland.

— ♦ —

The Hanging Shed by Gordon Ferris
Print and/or Kindle EditionApple iBook

Title: The Hanging Shed
Author: Gordon Ferris
Series Character: Douglas Brodie
Formats: Trade Paperback and ebook

What we know about the character: Ex-policeman, ex-soldier Douglas Brodie is a reporter in Glasgow.

His first case: The last time Douglas Brodie came home it was 1942 and he was a dashing young warrior in a kilt. Now, the war is over, but victory's wine has soured and Brodie's back in Scotland to try and save childhood friend Hugh Donovan from the gallows. Everyone thought Hugh was dead, shot down in the war. Perhaps it would have been kinder if he had been killed. The man who returns from the war is unrecognizable: mutilated, horribly burned. Hugh keeps his own company, only venturing out for heroin to deaden the pain of his wounds.

When a local boy is found raped and murdered, there is only one suspect. Hugh claims he's innocent but a mountain of evidence says otherwise. Despite the hideousness of the crime, ex-policeman Brodie feels compelled to try and help his one-time friend.

Working with advocate Samantha Campbell, Brodie trawls the mean streets of the Gorbals and the green hills of western Scotland in their search for the truth. What they find is an unholy alliance of troublesome priests, corrupt cops, and Glasgow's deadliest razor gang, happy to slaughter to protect their dark and dirty secrets. As time runs out for the condemned man, the murder tally of innocents starts to climb. When Sam Campbell disappears, it's the last straw for Brodie, and he reverts to his wartime role as a trained killer. It's them or him.

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The Right Hand by Derek Haas
Print and/or Kindle EditionApple iBook

Title: The Right Hand
Author: Derek Haas
Series Character: Austin Clay
Formats: Hardcover and ebook

What we know about the character: In the covert world, when the left hand can't — or doesn't want to — know what the right hand is doing, Austin Clay is that right hand.

His first case: There has always been a need in the spy game for operations outside the realm of legality — covert missions so black no one in the American government, and almost no one in intelligence itself, is aware of their existence. The left hand can't know what the right hand is doing.

Austin Clay is that right hand, executing missions that would be disavowed by his own government were he ever to be compromised. His team consists of only his trusted handler and himself. His missions are among the most important and dangerous in U.S. history.

Clay is sent to track down a missing American operative, a man who was captured outside of Moscow, in the Russian countryside. Soon he discovers the missing officer is only the beginning of the mission, and finds himself protecting a desperate woman who believes a mole has penetrated the top levels of the U.S. government, throwing the international balance of power into jeopardy.

— ♦ —

Crashed by Timothy Hallinan
Print and/or Kindle EditionApple iBook

Title: Crashed
Author: Timothy Hallinan
Series Character: Junior Bender
Formats: Hardcover and ebook

What we know about the character: Junior Bender is a master thief, who also works as a private investigator.

His first case: Junior Bender is a Los Angeles burglar with a magic touch. Since he first started breaking into houses when he was fourteen years old, he's never once been caught. But now, after twenty-two years of an exemplary career, Junior has been blackmailed by Trey Annunziato, one of the most powerful crime bosses in LA, into acting as a private investigator on the set of Trey's porn movie venture, which someone keeps sabotaging. The star Trey has lined up to do all that's unwholesome on camera is Thistle Downing, America's beloved child star, who now lives alone in a drug-induced stupor, destitute and uninsurable. Her starring role will be the scandalous fall-from-grace gossip of rubber-neckers across the country. No wonder Trey needs help keeping the production on track.

Junior knows what that he should do — get Thistle out and find her help — but doing the right thing will land him on the wrong side of LA's scariest mob boss. With the help of his precocious twelve-year-old daughter, Rina, and his criminal sidekick, Louie the Lost (an ex-getaway driver), Junior has to figure out a miracle solution.

— ♦ —

The Anatomist's Wife by Anna Lee Huber
Print and/or Kindle EditionApple iBook

Title: The Anatomist's Wife
Author: Anna Lee Huber
Series Character: Lady Darby
Formats: Trade Paperback and ebook

What we know about the character: Lady Darby is a widowed amateur sleuth in early 19th century Scotland.

Her first case: Scotland, 1830. Following the death of her husband, Lady Darby has taken refuge at her sister's estate, finding solace in her passion for painting. But when her hosts throw a house party for the cream of London society, Kiera is unable to hide from the ire of those who believe her to be as unnatural as her husband, an anatomist who used her artistic talents to suit his own macabre purposes.

Kiera wants to put her past aside, but when one of the house guests is murdered, her brother-in-law asks her to utilize her knowledge of human anatomy to aid the insufferable Sebastian Gage — a fellow guest with some experience as an inquiry agent. While Gage is clearly more competent than she first assumed, Kiera isn't about to let her guard down as accusations and rumors swirl.

When Kiera and Gage's search leads them to even more gruesome discoveries, a series of disturbing notes urges Lady Darby to give up the inquiry. But Kiera is determined to both protect her family and prove her innocence, even as she risks becoming the next victim …

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Placebo by Steven James
Print and/or Kindle EditionApple iBook

Title: Placebo
Author: Steven James
Series Character: Jevin Banks
Formats: Hardcover and ebook

What we know about the character: Jevin Banks is an exposé filmmaker.

His first case: While covertly investigating a controversial neurological research program, Jevin Banks is drawn into a far-reaching conspiracy involving one of the world's largest pharmaceutical firms.

After giving up his career as an escape artist and illusionist in the wake of his wife and sons' tragic death, Jevin is seeking not only answers about the questionable mind-to-mind communication program, but also answers to why his family suffered as they did.

— ♦ —

Killer Librarian by Mary Lou Kirwin
Print and/or Kindle EditionApple iBook

Title: Killer Librarian
Author: Mary Lou Kirwin
Series Character: Karen Nash
Formats: Mass Market Paperback and ebook

What we know about the character: Karen Nash is an amateur sleuth in small-town Minnesota.

Her first case: Champion of the mystery section at a small-town Minnesota library, Karen Nash is about to embark on a dream trip to London — a literary tour inspired by every murderous intrigue, wily suspect, and ingenious crime found in the pages of the British mysteries that she devours. But she's clueless why the love of her mid-life, Dave, would dump her hours before takeoff — until she spies him at the airport with a young honey on his arm! She decides the best revenge (for now) is to get on that plane anyway … and entertain schemes for Dave's untimely demise while crossing the pond.

After touching ground in the hallowed homeland of Christie, Sayers, and Peters, she checks into a cozy B & B run by charming bibliophile Caldwell Perkins. Soon she's spilling tears in her pint at the corner pub, sharing her heartbreak saga with a stranger. That night, a B & B guest drops out of circulation — permanently. And when Dave and his cutie turn up in London, Karen realizes they are an assassin's target. With the meticulous attention to detail that makes her a killer librarian, Karen sleuths her way through her own real-life mystery — in which library science meets the art of murder.

— ♦ —

Collared by L. A. Kornetsky
Print and/or Kindle EditionApple iBook

Title: Collared
Author: L. A. Kornetsky
Series Character: Gin & Tonic
Formats: Trade Paperback and ebook

What we know about the character: The Gin & Tonic mysteries feature concierge Ginny Mallard and bartender Teddy Tonica.

Their first case: Ginny Mallard and her shar-pei, Georgie, are about to run out of kibble and cash, unless she digs up another client for her private concierge business. So she heads to her neighborhood Seattle bar, Mary's, to sniff out an opportunity. Or a gimlet or two. The bartender, Teddy Tonica, is usually good for a round of challenging banter, and Georgie is oddly fond of his bar cat, Mistress Penny.

Before she can say “bottoms up,” Ginny lands a job tracking down some important business papers that have gone missing—along with the customer's uncle. If Ginny hopes to track him down, she'll need more than her research skills: she'll need a partner with people skills — like Tonica.

This is one dangerous case that's about to go to the dogs — unless man, woman, cat, and canine can work together as one very unconventional crime-solving team.

— ♦ —

Hot Rocks by Randy Rawls
Print and/or Kindle Edition

Title: Hot Rocks
Author: Randy Rawls
Series Character: Beth Bowman
Formats: Trade Paperback and ebook

What we know about the character: Beth Bowman is a South Florida private investigator.

Her first case: When Beth Bowman is knocked unconscious in a South Florida hotel room, the good news is she gets to meet the charming Dr. David Rasmussen. The bad news? She's wanted by the police for murder. Not to mention, several unknown parties are trying to kill her for reasons she doesn't understand.

Setting out to prove herself innocent, Bowman is tangled up in a world of stolen diamonds, international crime bosses, and thugs for hire. With her reputation and life on the line, she accepts help from a gang of guardian street people to turn the tables on the ne'er-do-wells who set her up.

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No Regrets, No Remorse by R. F. Sharp
Print and/or Kindle Edition

Title: No Regrets, No Remorse
Author: R. F. Sharp
Series Character: Sydney Simone
Formats: Hardcover and ebook

What we know about the character: Sydney Simone is an assassin for hire, "human pest control", whose cover is an assistant at a gallery in West Palm Beach.

Her first case: Sydney Simone, wounded herself, is dedicated to helping via a cloaked website and identity those whose wrongs can't be righted by orthodox means. First she verifies the client's story; then she accepts payment: half up front, half on completion of her work. Usually it's a form of human pest control.

For cover, Sydney works as an assistant at the Rose Madder Gallery in West Palm Beach run by Oscar Leopold. Oscar, a sculptor, has left his law practice behind. But now his former partner Roy is arrested for murdering Big Jack, an attorney with a sleazy television advertising presence. At the same time Sydney is dealing with a client who has seemingly penetrated her defenses and demands she complete a job — rubbing out Big Jack — an assignment where she has accepted, and pocketed, an unusually large fee. So now Sydney the client gives Sydney a new target and Sydney switches gears: dedicated to saving herself, Oscar, and Roy, even as she continues to operate HumanPestControl.com.

Teaming with Oscar isn't easy since she can't tell him all she knows, but soon their investigation leads to a complex insurance fraud scheme that implicates Roy — perhaps he really is guilty. But Oscar becomes an investigative target himself and is arrested, then kidnapped and assaulted as he tries to find the true killer.

Winner of the 2012 Poisoned Pen Press Discover Mystery Contest.

— ♦ —

For a list of more hardcover mysteries scheduled for publication during November, please visit our New Mysteries home page. If you're interested in new paperbacks, visit The Mystery Bookshelf, where you can discover a library of new mysteries, also updated with November 2012 releases. See also our regularly updated eBook site for new mysteries, suspense novels and thrillers, MysterEbooks.com.

Please also visit the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books where we are committed to providing readers and collectors of mystery books with the best and most current information about their favorite authors, titles, and series.

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