Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Press Release: Got Game Entertainment's Barrow Hill: Curse of the Ancient Circle Debuts

Games of Mystery
Unique first person adventure game sets archaeological mystery against the backdrop of an eerie Cornish landscape
Barrow Hill
WESTON, Conn., Aug. 22 /PRNewswire/ -- The myths and mysteries of ancient Cornwall now haunt North America as Got Game Entertainment LLC today announced that Barrow Hill: Curse of the Ancient Circle has shipped to game retailers. Adventure meets archaeology against the backdrop of an eerie Cornish landscape in this unique first person adventure game for the PC which also comes bundled with bonus features on the real Cornwall, a land rich in folklore, magic, and danger.

Barrow Hill: Curse of the Ancient Circle finds you stranded on a lonely road leading to Cornwall's ancient burial ground of Barrow Hill. Following in the footsteps of fictional archaeologist Conrad Morse, you soon discover that this barrow is frighteningly more than just a mound of earth and a collection of forgotten standing stones. Via the game's point and click interface, and using real archaeological techniques, explore well trodden pathways across the land, seek clues in almost forgotten shrines, unearth ancient artifacts, and delve into Celtic legends to ultimately unravel a detailed and spellbinding mystery.

The engrossing story and Cornish setting of Barrow Hill: Curse of the Ancient Circle transport you to another place. Artistically detailed and moody game environments reflecting the mystical countryside of England's westernmost county, famous for its tales of pirates, ghosts, and sinister ancient sites, coupled with the included bonus travel features, allow you to delve deeply into the supernatural wonders of Cornwall.

Visit the Barrow Hill website for more information and where you can also download the trailer and a demo version of the game.

Games for Mystery provides information about all types of mystery-themed games including games for the PC, board games, mystery parties for adults, teens, and children, mystery vacations, and mysteries online.

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , , .

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

News: Cornwell Donates Sickert Art to Harvard

Patricia Cornwell, author of Portrait of a Killer in which she named British impressionist painter Walter Sickert as Jack the Ripper, has donated the collection of 82 pieces of art by Sickert that she assembled during her research for the book to Harvard University's Fogg Art Museum.

Though Cornwell was not the first person to link Sickert to the deaths of at least five women in London's East End in 1888, she believed that DNA taken from his artwork could be linked to a sample taken from a letter purported to be written by Jack the Ripper.

The art collection includes 24 paintings, 22 drawings, and 36 prints. Estimated to be worth in excess of $5 million, they are currently on loan to the museum.

Cornwell has also donated 23 prints and 2 drawings by James McNeill Whistler to the museum. Sickert studied under Whistler, who is probably best known for his portrait of "Whistler's Mother", a severely dressed woman with a bonnet on a rocking chair.

Read more on this story on The Independent here.

The is commited to providing readers and collectors of with the best and most current information about their favorite authors, titles, and series.

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , .

Profile: Cynthia Riggs Pens Senior Sleuth Mysteries

Martha’s Vineyard is no place to commit murder - not if you hope to get away with it, writes Valerie A. Russo for The Patriot Ledger. Since 2001, seven cases have been solved by Victoria Trumbull, the 92-year-old amateur sleuth of the series written by Martha's Vineyard author Cynthia Riggs.

"My mother, Dionis Coffin Riggs, lived to be almost 99; the series is my way of keeping her alive," said Riggs, a 13th generation Islander. "She was a poet, not a sleuth, but she was a strong woman and very active ‘til the day she died. People who knew her say they recognize her in the character ‘Victoria’."

The Victoria Trumbull mysteries, titled after plants that grow on Martha's Vineyard, are Agatha Christie-style cozies. In addition to more books in this series, she is starting a new mystery series based on her house-boating experiences.

The entire article profiling this interesting and active author can be read on Patriot Ledger.com here.

The is commited to providing readers and collectors of with the best and most current information about their favorite authors, titles, and series. Please visit often!

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , , , .

Monday, August 21, 2006

Mystery Book Review: Page One: Hit and Run by Nancy Barr

Mysterious ReviewsMysterious Reviews, mysteries reviewed by the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books, has written our review of Page One: Hit and Run by Nancy Barr. For our blog readers, we are printing it first here in advance of its publication on our website.Page One: Hit and Run by Nancy Barr

Page One: Hit and Run by Nancy Barr
A Robin Hamilton Mystery
ISBN-10: 1-933926-15-5 (1933926155)
ISBN-13: 978-1-933926-15-5 (9781933926155)
Publication Date: July 2006
List Price: $16.95

Synopsis (from the publisher): Sassy, gutsy, reporter Robin Hamilton investigates a murder in a small-town where things are not always as they seem. No one can be trusted. As Robin covers the scoop of a hit and run for the local newspaper, a killer watches her every move.

Review: Nancy Barr introduces Robin Hamilton, a journalist who has recently returned to her home town in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, in the crisply written Page One: Hit and Run.

When a pillar of the community is killed by a hit and run outside her home, Robin begins to think it may have been more than just a tragic accident. The owner of the truck involved in the incident is quickly identified and take into custody. But his story doesn't quite fit the facts and for personal reasons, Robin feels compelled to commence her own investigation. As she conducts both on and off the record interviews with the people involved in the story, she uncovers a complex scheme of deception, fraud, and murder.

Though the plot is, at times, unnecessarily complicated, Barr handles her narrative smoothly. A journalist herself from the Upper Peninsula, she adds authentic details about how a small town newspaper operates and of the community which it serves. Her experience as a news editor shows in her writing, effectively blending concise, clear prose with descriptive details.

Page One: Hit and Run, with its engaging sleuth and appealing locale, serves as a promising start to this mystery series.

Special thanks to Arbutus Press for providing a copy of Page One: Hit and Run for this review.

Review Copyright © 2006 Hidden Staircase Mystery Books

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

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , , , . Omnimystery keyword(s): upper peninsula

Mystery Godoku: Weekly Puzzle for August 21, 2006

Mystery GodokuMystery Godoku Puzzle for August 21, 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 letters and mystery clue: A B C K O R S T Y. The 30th Spenser mystery in the series by Robert B. Parker had this title (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!

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , , , , .

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Mystery Game: Mansfield Manor Review

Games of MysteryMystery at Mansfield Manor
Marc Saltzman of the Gannett News Service recently reviewed the new online interactive mystery game, Mystery at Mansfield Manor.

This clever whodunit can best be described as an online interactive movie with nearly three hours of live-action video, Saltzman writes.

The game stars 14 real actors -- most of whom are suspects -- and it's your job as Detective Frank Mitchell to interrogate each one to solve the murder of a wealthy oil industrialist, Colin Mansfield Sr.

Saltzman adds, while a clever concept, Mystery at Mansfield Manor does suffer from occasional overacting, not to mention cliches, such as a renowned detective who is called to the case on the eve of his retirement; a lawyer who is holding unannounced changes to the deceased's will; and the attractive, young and money-hungry "companion" with eyes for other men.

He concludes his review by stating that this murder-mystery adventure is ideal for those in search of a fun challenge, though after you've solved the mystery, there is no reason to play again, unless you want to see the multiple endings.

Read the entire review as published on CNN.com here.

Games for Mystery provides information about all types of mystery-themed games including games for the PC, board games, mystery parties for adults, teens, and children, mystery vacations, and mysteries online.

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , , .

Friday, August 18, 2006

Mystery Bestsellers for August 18, 2006

Mystery BestsellersA list of the top ten mystery hardcover bestsellers for the week ending August 18, 2006 has been posted on the Hidden Staircase Mystery Books website.

A few newcomers to the lists this week. Ricochet by Sandra BrownAt the top of the Borders/Amazon.com list is Ricochet by Sandra Brown. When Detective Sergeant Duncan Hatcher is summoned to the home of Judge Cato Laird in the middle of the night to investigate a fatal shooting, he knows that discretion and kid-glove treatment are the keys to staying in the judge's good graces and keeping his job. At first glance, the case appears open-and-shut: Elise, the judge's trophy wife, interrupted a burglary in progress and killed the intruder in self-defense. But Duncan is immediately suspicious of Elise's innocent act. His gut feeling is that her account of the shooting is only partially true -- and it's the parts she's leaving out that bother him. "No one does steamy suspense like Brown, as shown by this expert mix of spicy romance and sharply crafted crime drama," states Publishers Weekly.

At the top of the Barnes&Noble.com list is Triptych by Karin Slaughter. Triptych by Karin SlaughterFrom Atlanta's wealthiest suburbs to its stark inner-city housing projects, a killer has crossed the boundaries of wealth and race. And the people who are chasing him must cross those boundaries, too. Among them is Michael Ormewood, a veteran detective whose marriage is hanging by a thread- and whose arrogance and explosive temper are threatening his career. And Angie Polaski, a beautiful vice cop who was once Michael's lover before she became his enemy. But unbeknownst to both of them, another player has entered the game: a loser ex-con who has stumbled upon the killer's trail in the most coincidental of ways- and who may be the key to breaking the case wide open. Kirkus Reviews writes that, "The volcanic heroes and villains, who act both surprisingly and logically, are a welcome sign that Slaughter's trademark franchise (the Grant County crime series) only hints at the range of her gifts."

Finally, new to both lists is Mask Market by Andrew Vachss. Mask Market by Andrew VachssThey meet in a no-name diner. A shadowy man hands Burke a CD dossier of someone he wants found. Minutes later, as Burke watches from an alley, his client is gunned down by a professional hunter-killer team. Burke slips away, unsure if he's been spotted. Later, when he examines the dossier, he discovers that the missing woman is Beryl Preston, a girl he'd rescued from a brutal pimp twenty years earlier -- when she was only thirteen -- and returned to her father. Now he has to find her again -- not only because she might be in danger, but also because he has to prove to himself that his rescue mission hadn't been financed by a predator who wanted his "property" returned. His search will force him to confront a new kind of human ugliness and, finally, to practice the survivalist triage that has marked -- and cursed -- his life since childhood. Publishers Weekly states, "Despite a familiar plot, the sharp-edged prose and cutting insights into New York's underbelly elevate this above many similar crime novels."

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.

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , , .

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Mystery Game: The Da Vinci Code Review

Games of MysteryThe Da Vinci Code
Ron Harris of the Associated Press recently reviewed the new adventure game from Take-Two Interactive, The Da Vinci Code.

The Da Vinci Code would benefit in the early stages from a time clock, or something to quicken the attempts to solve levels. And the level objectives could be better explained, Harris writes.

In between battles are sliding word puzzles and jumbled anagrams that must be solved in the Louvre and other Parisian landmarks before advancing to the next level, he adds. "The word puzzles are simple if you're taking notes, and even easier if you've read the book or even listened to the audio book."

He concludes by saying that if you're looking for a game that is faithful to the book, The Da Vinci Code is for you. If you're looking for something fresh, that Holy Grail remains elusive.

Read the entire review as published on ABCNews.com here.

Games for Mystery provides information about all types of mystery-themed games including games for the PC, board games, mystery parties for adults, teens, and children, mystery vacations, and mysteries online.

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , , .

Mystery Book Review: Sonnet of the Sphinx by Diana Killian

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

Sonnet of the Sphinx by Diana Killian
A Poetic Death Mystery with Grace Hollister
Pocket Books (Paperback)
ISBN-10: 0-7434-6680-2 (0743466802)
ISBN-13: 978-0-7434-6680-6 (9780743466806)
Publication Date: March 2006
List Price: $6.99

Synopsis (from the publisher): For one of Innisdale's residents, a priceless sonnet means poetic license to kill ...

Grace Hollister's stay in England's picturesque Lake District has proven doubly fruitful -- the American literary scholar just sold her first book, and her romance with charming antiques dealer and ex-jewel thief Peter Fox has begun a new chapter. Sorting through a hoard of papers found in an old farmhouse, Grace and Peter discover an old letter that refers to a lost Shelley sonnet, "Sate the Sphinx." Before Grace can start tracking down this poetic treasure, though, Peter's shady past rears its head -- a particularly ugly head, belonging to a menacing Turk who's eager to see Peter dead.

But there's plenty more trouble in store. Suddenly Grace and Peter are suspects in a murder investigation, and someone has tried his level best to kill her -- not once, but twice. The hieroglyphics are on the wall: unless Grace can unravel an inscrutable riddle and unearth the villain amid a cache of likely suspects, her story might be at an end.

Review: Diana Killian continues Grace Hollister's scholarly exploits in England's Lake District in the highly entertaining Sonnet of the Sphinx, the third book in the Poetic Death mystery series.
The possibility of recovering a lost Shelley sonnet is too compelling for Grace even after she's suspected of murder, is run off the road and nearly drowns, and barely escapes from her home as it burns to the ground. Though there are a couple of murders along the way, the real mystery of Sonnet of the Sphinx remains the quest itself. Does the sonnet exist, and if so, where is it, and is it authentic? Grace's research and persistence pay off when she ultimately ascertains the answers to these questions.

The back story in Sonnet of the Sphinx is fascinating and illustrates Killian's notable ability to interleave literary fact into a novel of fiction.

The ending comes as something of a surprise though in retrospect it shouldn't have been since Killian cleverly interjects telling clues throughout.

The epilogue serves as a cliffhanger of sorts. Will there be a fourth Poetic Death mystery? If so, will it take place in Cumbria? And where is Grace's increasingly complex relationship with the mysterious Peter Fox heading? Another literary adventure with Grace Hollister would certainly help resolve these undecided issues.

Special thanks to Diana Killian for providing a copy of Sonnet of the Sphinx for this review.

Review Copyright © 2006 Hidden Staircase Mystery Books

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

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , , , . Omnimystery keyword(s): lake district, cumbria

News: Murder She Writes

Marilyn Gardner of The Christian Science Monitor writes that almost half of the mysteries published in the US are written by women. In addition to creating intriguing new fictional roles for female crime-solvers, these whodunits are drawing more women to read mysteries of all kinds.

"We've helped grow the market for crime fiction. While fiction is stagnant or falling, crime fiction remains a very buoyant sub-genre," says Sara Paretsky, bestselling author of the Kinsey Millhone mystery series.

Women writers often offer unusual perspectives. Rochelle Krich, president-elect of Sisters in Crime, writes two series with Orthodox Jewish settings.

Libby Fischer Hellmann describes another sub-genre, the chick-lit mystery, as "Prada-type girls who happen to solve mysteries when they're not working in their wonderful Manhattan jobs."

Despite progress, women who write whodunits still have a few real-life mysteries to solve. One could be called The Case of the Changing Publishing Industry. Now that American publishers have consolidated into six conglomerates, their emphasis is on blockbusters.

For all authors, perhaps the biggest challenge involves The Case of the Diminishing Readership. "There's one underlying need we have to address," Hellmann says. "That is nurturing the next generation of mystery readers. We used to say, 'All these kids are reading Harry Potter. They'll be the next generation of mystery readers.' But they're not. They stop reading as teenagers. They're lured by iPods, the Internet, MySpace, and games."

Read the entire article on CSMonitor.com here.

The is commited to providing readers and collectors of with the best and most current information about their favorite authors, titles, and series.

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , .

Monday, August 14, 2006

Mystery Book Review: Death Angel by Martha Powers

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

Death Angel by Martha Powers
Non-series
Oceanview Publishing (Hardcover)
ISBN-10: 1-933515-03-1 (1933515031)
ISBN-13: 978-1-933515-03-8 (9781933515038)
Publication Date: October 2006
List Price: $24.95

Synopsis (from the publisher): The search for truth can be deadly. Kate and Richard Warner have a quiet life – a routine life – until the one afternoon that changes them forever. Within a few short hours they are thrust into the black hole of every parent’s worst nightmare. Suddenly they are at the center of attention of their community, the media, and the police . . . for all the wrong reasons. The chief of police has singled out Richard as the primary suspect in a heinous crime that took more than an innocent life. With Richard as a suspect, Kate’s life unravels into unbearable chaos, grief, and a whole new world of deception. Neighbors turn away, and only a small handful of close friends are there to help. Or are they? After a second murder and Richard’s disappearance, Kate sets out to find the killer in their midst and clear her husband’s name. She begins to piece together an eerie puzzle, finding clues in the heart of her own community.

Anguish, suspicion and death combine in the horrifying aftermath of a vicious crime that pits a mother’s love against a ruthless killer. In a stunning conclusion, Kate risks her own life to track down and kill the Death Angel.

Review: In Death Angel, Martha Powers has crafted a thriller that perfects the art of misdirection. Everyone in this small Chicago suburb has secrets, and until the killer is revealed on the final pages, his identity remains a mystery.

After Kate and Richard Wagner's daughter disappears and is later found raped and murdered, and as their lives slowly spin out of control when Richard is suspected to be involved in the crime, Kate remarks, "There's no reality to our lives anymore. The unthinkable has become commonplace." This simple statement is the constant element that unites the various storylines in this book and is the basis for much of the suspense.

Death Angel for the most part alternates between two perspectives: Kate's conviction her husband is innocent and her doubt he may be guilty, and police chief Carl Leidecker's on-going investigation of the crime. This literary approach is quite effective as it adds a measure of conflict between these two principal characters though they share a common goal: to see the girl's murderer brought to justice. Along the way the author takes a few shortcuts to advance the plot, but in the end, Death Angel is a compelling suspense novel.

The tragedy of child abduction and murder is all too real. In a preface, Martha Powers acknowledges a Chicago mother whose story was the inspiration for Death Angel.

Special thanks to Maryglenn McCombs Book Publicity for providing an ARC of Death Angel for this review.

Review Copyright © 2006 Hidden Staircase Mystery Books

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

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , , , . Omnimystery keyword(s): chicago

News: Investigation Uncovers 5 Sleuths Worth Reading

Almost 5000 mysteries were published in 2005, with over 5500 published the year before. Bill Eichenberger of The Columbus Dispatch asked, "With so many new mysteries flooding the market annually (based on statistics from bibliographical-information supplier R. R. Bowker), how can readers find the most promising new authors and their compelling crime solvers?" After a bit of investigative reporting, he found a consensus forming around five of the hottest new sleuths worth reading, listed together with their most recent books.

Vince Camden (Citizen Vince by Jess Walter; HarperCollins 2005).

Jack Taylor (The Dramatist by Ken Bruen; St. Martin's Press 2006).

John Ray Horn (Red Sky Lament by Edward Wright; Orion 2006).

Lydia Chin and Bill Smith (Winter and Night by S. J. Rozan; St. Martin's Press 2002).

Read the entire article, including information about each of these mystery characters, here.

The is commited to providing readers and collectors of with the best and most current information about their favorite authors, titles, and series.

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , .

Mystery Godoku: Weekly Puzzle for August 14, 2006

Mystery GodokuMystery Godoku Puzzle for August 14, 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 letters and mystery clue: A B H I L N R T Y. This historical thriller with archaeology volunteer Alice Tanner was a bestseller for Kate Mosse in 2006 (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!

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , , , , .

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Press Release: James Patterson to Receive ITW's 2007 ThrillerMaster Award

The International Thriller Writers, Inc (ITW) is delighted to announce that the 2007 ThrillerMaster Award for outstanding contribution to the thriller genre will be presented to author James Patterson during ThrillerFest 2007, hosted by ITW.

(PRWEB) August 12, 2006 -- The International Thriller Writers, Inc (ITW) is delighted to announce that the 2007 ThrillerMaster Award for outstanding contribution to the thriller genre will be presented to author James Patterson during ThrillerFest 2007, hosted by ITW.

Author Clive Cussler, 2006 ThrillerMaster Award recipient and a spotlight guest for ThrillerFest 2007, will present the award to Patterson during a gala Thriller Awards Ceremony on July 14, 2007 at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in New York City. During the ceremony ITW also will present its Thriller Awards covering five categories including The Distinguished Literature Award; Best Novel; Best First Novel; Best Paperback Original and Best Script.

Founded in October 2004, at the Bouchercon World Suspense Conference in Toronto, Canada, the International Thriller Writers organization (ITW) was created by thriller authors to celebrate the thriller, to enhance the prestige and raise the profile of thrillers, to award prizes to outstanding thriller novels and authors, and to create marketing opportunities for authors within the thriller community.

Read the entire press release here.

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , .

News: Hammett Prize Winner Prince of Thieves to be Filmed

Reuters is reporting that the winner of the 2004 Hammett Prize, Prince of Thieves by Chuck Hogan, will be filmed with director Adrian Lyne attached to the project.

Hogan's brash tale of four men -- thieves, rivals, friends -- being hunted through the streets of Boston by a tenacious FBI agent, and the woman who may destroy them all, is a spectacular, stylish, heart-pounding thriller.

Lyne is the Oscar-nominated director of Fatal Attraction with Michael Douglas and Glenn Close, and most recently directed Richard Gere and Diane Lane in Unfaithful.

The Hammett Prize is awarded annually by the North American Branch of the International Association of Crime Writers for literary excellence in the field of crime-writing.

The is commited to providing readers and collectors of with the best and most current information about their favorite authors, titles, and series.

Technorati tags: mystery books blogs, , .

Omnimystery Blog Archive

Total Pageviews (last 30 days)

Omnimystery News
Original Content Copyright © 2020 — Omnimystery, a Family of Mystery Websites — All Rights Reserved
Guest Post Content (if present) Copyright © 2020 — Contributing Author — All Rights Reserved