Blackwell, Juliet. Home for the Haunting: A Haunted Home Renovation Mystery. Obsidian: NAL. Dec. 2013. 312p. ISBN 9780451240705. pap. $7.99. M
When a weekend volunteer home renovation project unearths a murder victim on-site, San Francisco–based contractor Mel turns to the spirits for help in her fourth outing (after Murder on the House).
Cavender, Chris. The Missing Dough: A Pizza Lovers Mystery. Kensington. Dec. 2013. 248p. ISBN 9780758271549. $24. M
The sixth outing (after Killer Crust) for the North Carolina pizza-baking sisters gets personal when a killer with a barbeque skewer stabs Maddy’s ex-husband. Cavender is a pseudonym for the multiseries writer Tim Myers.
Dunn, Carola. Heirs of the Body: A Daisy Dalrymple Mystery. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Dec. 2013. 304p. ISBN 9780312675493. $24.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466836433. M
Lord Dalrymple is turning 50 and needs Daisy’s help figuring out the family tree. Some disreputable characters come out of the woodwork hoping to claim rights as heirs. Dunn is up to number 21 in her witty historical cozy series (after Gone West).
Hess, Joan. Murder as a Second Language: A Claire Malloy Mystery. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Dec. 2013. 292p. ISBN 9781250011961. $25.99;
ebk. ISBN 9781250030016. M
Her local literacy foundation has some serious problems, but new volunteer Claire hadn’t thought they’d bring out murderous instincts. Still going strong after 27 years; this is number 19 (after Deader Homes and Gardens).
Jaffarian, Sue Ann. Second-Hand Stiff: An Odelia Grey Mystery. Midnight Ink. Dec. 2013. 304p. ISBN 9780738718880. pap. $14.99. M
A storage locker auction blows sky-high when an explosion exposes a corpse—a relative of Odelia’s husband. The comic plus-size sleuth series returns for its eighth time (after Hide & Snoop).
McGilloway, Brian. The Nameless Dead. Pan Macmillan, dist. by Trafalgar Square. Dec. 2013. 392p. ISBN 9780330460866. pap. $12.95. M
An illegal adoption scam is only one of Inspector Devlin’s problems in this gritty Irish procedural. The fifth case is just what readers will want (after The Rising); this series is newly available in the United States and is hot, hot, hot.
Muller, Marcia & Bill Pronzini. The Spook Lights Affair: A Carpenter and Quincannon Mystery. Forge: Tor. Dec. 2013. 256p. ISBN 9780765331755. $24.99. ebk. ISBN 9781429997225. M
Detectives Carpenter and Quincannon and their mysterious colleague (Holmes, anyone?) pursue two cases: a missing debutante and a Wells Fargo robbery. Sign up for number two (after The Bughouse Affair) in this dynamic duo’s historical series set in San Francisco, circa 1895.
Purser, Ann. Scandal at Six: A Lois Meade Mystery. Berkley Prime Crime. Dec. 2013. 336p. ISBN 9780425261767. $25.95. M
Lois feels uneasy about the eccentric zoo owner whose cavalier attitude about his escaped critters is rattling the villagers. Not surprisingly, the house cleaner’s instincts are spot-on; this is her 13th case (after Found Guilty at Five).
Rowe, Rosemary. Dark Omens: A Libertus Mystery of Roman Britain. Severn House. Dec. 2013. 232p. ISBN 9780727882998. $28.95. M
News of the emperor’s death complicates Libertus’s ongoing investigations in Roman Britain. But his 14th outing (after A Whispering of Spies) finds him solving problems wisely.