Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Global Sleuths

Want something a little exotic to read? Try a mystery with an exotic foreign locale - preferably one set in another time as well.

The Poisoner of Ptah, by P.C. Doherty, is set in ancient Egypt during the reign of the Pharaoh-Queen Hatusu of the XVIII dynasty. Amerotke, Chief Judge of the Halls of Two Truths must investigate a rash of poisoning crimes that is terrorizing the royal city of Thebes.

A Grave in Gaza, by Matt Beynon Rees, is the second Omar Yussef mystery. Set in a troubled landscape of violence and despair, this book sees Yussef trying to unravel the connection between a teacher's arrest on charges of spying, the murder of a Palestinian security officer, the kidnapping of Yussef's colleague and a stolen missile.

Death of a Gentle Lady, by M.C. Beaton, is the 23rd installment in the Hamish Macbeth series. As poorly written as they are, these books still manage to pull you into the story, probably due to Macbeth's character and the twee nature of the Scottish Highlands. (It used to be the rural Irish that were cute and quaint, now it's the rural Scots).

Special Assignments: the further adventures of Erast Fandorin is by Russian author Boris Akunin. Set in Czarist Moscow, this book follows the path of gentleman sleuth Erast Fandorin as he tries to catch both a canny swindler and psychotic serial killer (that's really a redundancy, isn't it?) who preys on women at the direction of a powerful 'patron'.

So pick a place, any place, and blend a little foreign scenery in with your mystery plot. Spice things up a little.

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