LJ Best Books 2016

A jury of our peers discussed, debated, disagreed, and finally declared LJ’s annual Top Ten Best Books of the year, selected by our editors, as well as Top Five lists for genre fiction, nonfiction, poetry, graphic novels, and SELF-e titles. VISIT THE WEBSITE

From Box to Tremayne | Mystery Previews, Jul. 2017, Pt. 2

Box, C.J. Paradise Valley. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Jul. 2017. 352p. ISBN 9781250051042. $27.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466851993. CD: Macmillan Audio. MYSTERY
Investigator Cassie Dewell is now jobless, the plan she set up for the Bakken County, ND, sheriff’s boxcjdepartment to ensnare a serial killer called the Lizard King having badly derailed. So when a troubled boy she’s been helping disappears after telling his grandmother that he’s going on a grand adventure, Cassie has the time and the impetus to search for him. Not that she’s forgotten about that nasty Lizard guy, to whom the plot circles back dangerously. From the Edgar Award winner; with a one-day laydown on July 25.

Casey, Jane. Let the Dead Speak. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Jul. 2017. 352p. ISBN 9781250100832. $27.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250100849. MYSTERY
London police detective Maeve Kerrigan is dealing with a probable murder. The only thing missing is the body; teenage Chloe, who seems to be hiding something, has returned home to blood-soaked carpets and no mother. The excessively devout folks down the street are acting strangely, and everyone suspects the neighborhood bad guy, thought to have once stabbed a classmate. But where’s the evidence? Casey won the Mary Higgins Clark Award for 2015’s The Stranger You Know.

Castillo, Linda. Down a Dark Road. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Jul. 2017. 320p. ISBN 9781250121288. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250121301. CD: Macmillan Audio. MYSTERY
There’s no peace in the Amish world that serves as backdrop for Castillo’s New York Times best-selling series starring Chief of Police Kate Burkholder. In the next entry, Joseph King, a fallen Amish man convicted of murdering his wife, has escaped from prison and kidnapped his five castillochildren at gunpoint from their Amish uncle’s home. After a showdown with Joseph, Kate starts suspecting that he’s innocent. With a national tour.

Davis, Lindsey. The Third Nero. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Jul. 2017. 352p. ISBN 9781250078919. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466891456. MYSTERY
Cartier Diamond Dagger winner Davis, winner of the inaugural Ellis Peters Historical Dagger in 1999 for Two for the Lion, part of her hugely popular Marcus Didius Falco series, is now up to the fifth entry in her new series starring Falco’s daughter Flavia Albia. Suspecting plots all ’round, the Emperor Domitian has had several senators and provincial governors executed, and now Flavia has been asked to dig up more evidence of treachery. She’s not thrilled, but with her fiancé laid low by a lightning bolt, she’s got bills to pay. Library marketing; the Flavia series hasn’t completely found its footing but remains fun and promising.

Honda, Tetsuya. Soul Cage. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Jul. 2017. 304p. ISBN 9781250061584. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466867307. MYSTERY
Last year’s LJ-starred The Silent Dead introduced U.S. readers to Lt. Reiko Himekawa, a 29-year-old homicide detective with the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department who battles her misogynistic coworkers as much as the bad guys. In this next entry, the hand of the missing Kenichi Takaoka is found in an abandoned minivan and Takaoka presumed dead. (There’s plenty of blood in the garage he’s rented as well.) But a childhood friend shown a recent picture of the victim declares mccaffertythat it’s not Takaoka. From one of Japan’s best-selling authors.

McCafferty, Keith. Cold Hearted River: A Sean Stranahan Mystery. Viking. Jul. 2017. 320p. ISBN 9780525429609. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780698406360. MYSTERY
Investigating a woman’s death during spring snows, Sheriff Martha Ettinger and on-again lover Sean Stranahan find a fly wallet with the initials EH that could lead them to a trunk full of Ernest Hemingway’s fly-fishing gear and maybe a valuable unpublished manuscript or two. But first it leads them to the dangerous world of traditional Chinese medicine. Crazy Mountain Kiss, the fourth book in the series, won the Spur Award for Best Western Contemporary Novel, and the publisher hopes to build McCafferty as it has Craig Johnson of “Longmire” fame.

McCall Smith, Alexander. A Distant View of Everything: An Isabel Dalhousie Novel. Pantheon. Jul. 2017. 272p. ISBN 9780307908940. $25.95; ebk. ISBN 9780307908957. lrg. prnt. MYSTERY
Even as Isabel Dalhousie tries to convince nearly four-year-old son Charlie that his new baby brother is a reason for joy, she’s approached by matchmaker Rosemary Hipple with a delicate problem. Rosemary successfully introduced a cosmetic surgeon and a banker but has since heard information about the former that is giving her second thoughts about the match. The ten previous Isabel Dalhousie novels were all best sellers, with 1.3 million books out there in print from this peterspublisher. With library marketing.

Peters, Elizabeth & Joan Hess. The Painted Queen. Morrow. Jul. 2017. 352p. ISBN 9780062083517. $27.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062083524. lrg. prnt. MYSTERY
When she died in 2013, the multi-award-winning Peters left much of the manuscript plus extensive notes for this 20th entry in the ever-popular series starring Amelia Peabody and her handsome archaeologist husband, Radcliffe Emerson. Friend and writing buddy Hess agreed to complete the story, which has the protagonists chasing after a stolen bust of Queen Nefertiti even as Amelia dodges assassins. Peters’s previous title, A River in the Sky, debuted at No. 5 on the New York Times best sellers list, her best showing yet. Good-bye to a mystery great.

Rosenfelt, David. Collared. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Jul. 2017. 336p. ISBN 9781250055354. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466859937. CD: Macmillan Audio. MYSTERY
This 14th in the popular Andy Carpenter series from Edgar-nominated and Shamus Award-winning Rosenfelt opens with a stray being dropped off at the Tara Foundation, the dog rescue organization Andy ardently supports. An embedded chip reveals that this was the dog also taken two and a half years ago when single mother Jill Hickman’s adopted baby was kidnapped. Now the hunt is renewed for the still-missing child, even as Andy, in his lawerly capacity, seeks to determine whether the right collaredman has been jailed for the kidnapping. With library marketing.

Schwegel, Theresa. The Lies We Tell. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Jul. 2017. 368p. ISBN 9781250001788. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250022448. MYSTERY
In 2005, Schwegel won an Edgar Award for Best First Novel for Officer Down and has since written a handful of other well-received Chicago-set mysteries, most recently The Good Boy. Here, police detective Gina Simonetti, desperate to keep the job she needs to support her niece, makes sure that no one knows she has multiple sclerosis. But then she ends up in a skin-on-skin confrontation with assault suspect Johnny Marble, who gets away with a clear knowledge of her physical constraints. She’s got to track him down, but then he can reveal her secret.

Tremayne, Peter. Penance of the Damned. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Jul. 2017. 352p. ISBN 9781250119643. $27.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250119650. MYSTERY
Celtic scholar Tremayne uses his knowledge to good effect in his long-standing and internationally best-selling series set in seventh-century Ireland and starring Fidelma of Cashel. Fidelma, both a dalaigh (an advocate in the courts of the Five Kingdoms of Éireann, and a wily one indeed) and a Celtic nun ultimately married to a Saxon monk, Brother Eadulf, is also sister to the king of Cashel. Here, she’s dispatched to investigate when the king’s chief bishop is found murdered in unfriendly lands. The man charged certainly looks guilty—he was found in the bishop’s locked chamber, weapon in hand—but Fidelma has her doubts.

Share
Barbara Hoffert About Barbara Hoffert

Barbara Hoffert (bhoffert@mediasourceinc.com, @BarbaraHoffert on Twitter) is Editor, LJ Prepub Alert; past chair of the Materials Selection Committee of the RUSA (Reference and User Services Assn.) division of the American Library Association; and past president, treasurer, and awards chair of the National Book Critics Circle.

Comment Policy:
  1. Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  2. Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  3. Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  4. Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media, per our Terms of Use.

We are not able to monitor every comment that comes through (though some comments with links to multiple URLs are held for spam-check moderation by the system). If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.

We accept clean XHTML in comments, but don't overdo it and please limit the number of links submitted in your comment. For more info, see the full Terms of Use.

Speak Your Mind

*