Closed Casket by Sophie Hannah
(William Morrow, 2016, 299 pages)
Closed Casket by Sophie Hannah features Agatha Christie’s famous detective, Hercule Poirot. In this novel, Hercule Poirot along with an inspector from Scotland Yard and several other guests is invited to the Irish mansion of Lady Playford. Lady Playford has decided to change her will. At dinner, Lady Playford announces that she is leaving her entire fortune to her dying secretary rather than her two children. As you might expect, the secretary does not live to see morning. Who killed him? Poirot is on the case.
The estate of Agatha Christie authorized Sophie Hannah to use Hercule Poirot in her novel. Hannah has written one other Poirot mystery entitled The Monogram Murders. Closed Casket did hold my interest, but the mystery is not as intricately woven as a Christie novel.
You Have Killed Me by Jamie S. Rich and Joelle Jones
(Oni Press, 2009, 184 pages)
You Have Killed Me is the story of a detective hired to find his former girlfriend by her sister. Told from the point of view of the detective, the story was good, but it wasn’t long enough to fully develop the characters. I got the gist of what happened at the end, but to fully understand it I needed to go back to recall the characters. This would be better read in one sitting with characters and events fresh in one’s mind. The black and white art is amazing. I recommend it for a quick read for fans of detective fiction.
Took: A Ghost Story by Mary Downing Hahn
(Clarion Books, 2015, 272 pages)
Very creepy folklore! Fun read.
Y is for Yesterday by Sue Grafton
(Marian Wood Books/Putnam, 2017, 483 pages)
Y is for Yesterday by Sue Grafton is the 25th novel featuring private investigator, Kinsey Millhone. This book bounces between 1979 and 1989. In 1979, four teenage boys make a four-minute tape featuring a sexual assault of one of their classmates. When the tape goes missing, the leader of the boys accuses another female classmate of the theft. The “thief” ends up dead, one of the boys, Fritz, goes to jail for her murder, and the leader of the group disappears. Fast forward to 1989 where Kinsey gets involved in the 1979 case. Fritz is being blackmailed by someone who says s/he will release the tape unless a $25,000.00 ransom is paid. Since that tape could send Fritz back to jail, Kinsey is asked to locate the blackmailer(s).
Y is for Yesterday is part of Sue Grafton’s alphabet series. Z is for Zero will be released in 2019. Grafton has not yet decided if there will be more Kinsey Millhone stories beyond Z. It is interesting to read these novels because they are all set in the 1980’s. Cellphones and computers were not widely available in those years so Grafton must rely on the tools available at the time to help Kinsey in her investigations. While I didn’t particularly enjoy Y is for Yesterday because of the subject matter, Grafton’s alphabet series has been fun to read. I’ll be sure to read Z is for Zero.
The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn
(William Morrow, 2018, 448 pages)
I was lucky enough to snag an Advanced Reader Copy of this book (pub. date: January 2018) which I kept hearing about… It lived up to the hype 😉
Here’s the review I posted on Goodreads:
“I can’t believe how much I enjoyed this book. I was sucked in almost immediately. Even though I was tense almost the whole time I was reading it (suspense!) I hated to put it down. This is a quick read recommended to anyone. If you’re a fan of classic suspense films you’ll appreciate The Woman in the Window that much more for all the film references throughout.
There have been comparisons to Girl on the Train but this is of a much higher caliber. I was already recommending it to people before I’d even finished. Even if thrillers/suspense aren’t what you regularly read I think you’ll enjoy this as a good gateway into the genre.”
Dangerous Minds (Knight and Moon #2)
by Janet Evanovich
(Bantam, 2017, 319 pages)
Dangerous Minds: A Knight and Moon Novel by Janet Evanovich is the second book in the series featuring Emerson Knight and Riley Moon. In this novel, Emerson’s Buddhist monk friend, Wayan Bagus, asks Emerson to help him find his missing island located near Samoa. The island has vanished into thin air. The only clue that Wayan has is that the men who removed him from his island had distinctive tattoos and uniforms. Emerson traces the uniforms back to the National Park Service and follows the clues from there.
The plots in this series are very improbable, but the quirky characters make the story fun to read. Besides Emerson and Riley, there is Emerson’s cousin, Vernon, who believes in Bigfoot and pretty women. There is the Buddhist monk who loves watching old movies even in the midst of life-threatening events. Then, there is the villain who uses a hatchet as one of his primary weapons. There is no mention of a third book in this series, but it is probably only a matter of time.
Curious Minds: A Knight and Moon Novel
by Janet Evanovich and Phoef Sutton
(Bantam Dell, 2016, 322 pages)
Curious Minds: A Knight and Moon Novel, by Janet Evanovich and Phoef Sutton is the first book in a new series featuring Emerson Knight and Riley Moon. Emerson Knight is rich, eccentric, and well educated. Riley Moon is a new junior analyst for the Washington DC mega-bank, Blane-Grunwald. Riley is assigned to help Emerson keep track of his money. When Emerson insists that he wants to see his gold, Riley accompanies him to the gold vault under Wall Street. There Emerson and Riley discover that the gold is being stolen and being replaced with look-alikes. The adventure begins!
Emerson Knight and Riley Moon are very likable characters. Emerson lives in a mansion, but sleeps in a tent in his library. Riley was raised in rural Texas and was a bit of a tomboy. While the story is far-fetched, it was enjoyable. The second Knight and Moon Novel is Dangerous Minds. It has been added to my reading list.