Saturday, February 2, 2008

New Mysteries

We have some new mysteries on our shelves from some rather unique mystery series. The authors present the reader with very unusual settings or characters, which adds an extra level of interest onto their already gripping plots.
Red Mandarin Dress by Qiu Xiaolong is the third Inspector Chen novel in our collection. A Chief Inspector of the Shanghai police department, Chen is doing double duty: tracking a serial killer and investigating a sensitive corruption case. A native of Shanghai himself, Qiu vividly recreates the teeming city and the intricacies of modern China.
A Prayer for the Damned by Peter Tremayne takes readers back to 7th century Ireland. Sister Fidelma and Brother Eadulf are about to get married, but the ceremony is disrupted by the murder of the nasty Abbot Ultan and it falls to Fidelma to discover the truth behind the killing. Tremayne is the pseudonym of Peter Ellis, a scholar of Celtic history, and his books are meticulously accurate and filled with interesting details.
The Mortal Groove by Ellen Hart is the latest Jane Lawless mystery. Lawless is a restaurateur in Minneapolis who solves mysteries on the side (I helped manage a restaurant, and I don't remember there being that much free time). Hart is "a top novelist in the cultishly popular gay mystery genre" (Entertainment Weekly), and she provides lots of fun plot twists as Lawless' father runs for Governor and discovers just how dirty politics can be.

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