Mystery Roundup: An Escaped Mental Patient, An Amish Haunted House, and Feral Emus


This week’s mystery round up includes a standalone World War I novel, a strained family reunion, and a trip to the seedy underbelly of Vegas (or rather, a trip to Vegas).

Uncaged, by John Sandford and Michele Cook
There’s nothing like a good heart-pounding mystery to get teen readers hooked on reading from an early age, am I right? The newest novel from the best-selling author of the Prey series has a broad appeal that extends from young readers to adults. It features Shay, a tough-as-nails 16-year-old girl who is bound and determined to protect her brother Odin, a gifted hacker, from the clutches of Singular Corp., a brutal corporation with questionable (i.e., nonexistent) ethics. Singular is conducting horrifying experiments, and they will stop at nothing to keep Odin from spilling their secrets—unless Shay can get to him first. No question: from the first few pages of this fast-paced mystery, you’ll be hooked. (In hardcover and NOOK July 8.)

The Care and Management of Lies, by Jacqueline Winspear
Fans of her best-selling Maisie Dobbs mystery series, about a war nurse turned private investigator, will love Winspear’s gorgeous new standalone novel, about the impact of World War I on the lives and friendships of two very different but highly admirable women, Kezia and Thea. The more traditional of the two, Kezia becomes engaged to Thea’s brother Tom, as Thea becomes more heavily involved in women’s suffrage, which causes an initial rift between the two. When Tom enlists in the war and Thea finds herself driving an ambulance on the front lines, Kezia is left to run the family farm on her own, drawing upon new reserves of strength and offering support for her friend and husband as they face the horrors of war. The strength and grace with which these characters confront disaster is both touching and inspiring. (In hardcover and NOOK July 1.)

Power Play, by Catherine Coulter
The 18th book in Coulter’s FBI Thriller series finds FBI special agents Dillon Savich and Lacey Sherlock investigating the case of a U.S. ambassador who has been receiving mysterious threats after her fiancé was killed in a car accident (and rumors began surfacing that she was responsible for his death). Not only that, but Sherlock receives word that a dangerous old enemy has resurfaced—Blessed Backman has escaped from a mental institution, and he’s out for revenge. If you haven’t yet given this fast-paced, whip-smart series a shot, this is definitely the summer to finally dig in—you may want to start from the beginning, with the chilling first novel The Cove. (In hardcover and NOOK July 8.)

The Dead Will Tell, by Linda Castillo
When a series of grisly killings appear to be linked to a decades-old unsolved murder, Police Chief Kate Burkholder is compelled to investigate the cold case, in which several members of an Amish family were found murdered in their home—now known as “the haunted Hochstetler farm.” The body count grows as Burkholder comes ever closer to uncovering the devastating truth behind what really happened to the family on that grisly night thirty-five years ago. Castillo’s Kate Burkholder series offers a fascinating glimpse into Amish culture, for those who like their mysteries with a heaping helping of insight into a world which may be unfamiliar to them. (In hardcover and NOOK July 8.)

The Good, the Bad, and the Emus, by Donna Andrews
Fans of Andrews’s delightfully quirky novels will appreciate the lively 17th novel in the Meg Langslow series, in which Meg’s long-lost grandfather turns up, bringing with him a suspicious death in the family (and a feral emu problem). Fortunately Meg and her family are up to the task—even after a sudden murder shakes things up and leaves everyone a suspect. Come for the eccentric cast of characters, stay for the impossible-to-predict plot twists that have become Andrews’ hallmark. (In hardcover and NOOK July 8.)

Fatal Fortune, by Victoria Laurie
Abby’s best friend, Candice, has really done it this time—or has she? Surveillance footage shows Candice murdering a man in cold blood, and nearly everyone is convinced of her guilt, but Abby’s not (completely) buying it. She heads on a risky trip to Las Vegas to clear her friend’s name, discovering a seedy world of cover-ups, double-dealings, and other risky ventures that come dangerously close to making sure she doesn’t get out alive. Fans of Laurie’s Psychic Eye mystery series will find the same smart, cracklingly funny characters they have come to know and love—and new readers will find that it’s easy enough to dive right in later on in the series. If you like your mysteries laced with a thriller’s nonstop action, you’ll love these books. (In hardcover and NOOK July 1.)

What mysteries are turning your pages lately?

  • Joel Cunningham

    “The Feral Emus” would be a good name for a not-very-good band.

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