Mapping Murder by William D. Andrews

Mapping Murder (2017, Islandport Press) is book #3 in the Julie Williamson Mystery series. The previous titles were Stealing History and Breaking Ground. All three books revolve around Julie Williamson the young, new director of the Ryland Historic Society in the fictional western Maine town of Ryland.

The storyline for this instalment revolves around several thefts of precious artefacts from other Maine historical societies, and not necessarily the most valuable items in their respective collections either.… Continue reading “Mapping Murder by William D. Andrews”

Deadly Care: A Claire Burke Mystery by Emma Pivato

Deadly Care (2016, Cozy Cat Press) is book #6 in the Claire Burke Mystery series, penned by Edmonton Alberta writer Emma Pivato. It finds Claire Burke and Tia, her best friend and partner in crime-solving, searching for a killer in the nursing home that Tia’s mother Marisa is residing in after her debilitating stroke.  Deadly Care is a “cozy mystery”, a genre that is growing in popularity as an alternative to novels that have become excessively graphic in their depictions of murder, sex, and the overuse of profanity.… Continue reading “Deadly Care: A Claire Burke Mystery by Emma Pivato”

The Spanish Boy by C.S. Reardon

The year is 1936 and the Clarey family of Halifax, Nova Scotia is, by all accounts, a typical family. The father, Charles is the latest owner of Clarey Paint and Glass, a business started by his grandfather. Charles and Mary Clarey live in a house with their children Edith (Edie) and Mel. Their oldest, Gus is away at a seminary college in Antigonish. Mel’s best friend Lawrence (Lawrie) Shine lives across the street.… Continue reading “The Spanish Boy by C.S. Reardon”

Straw Man (A Jack McMorrow Mystery #11) by Gerry Boyle

: Straw Man was the winner of the 2017 Maine Literary Award for Crime Fiction!

Islandport Books has released book #11 in the Jack McMorrow Mystery series by Maine author Gerry Boyle. I previously reviewed #10 Once Burned and said that the hard-boiled detective created by Dashiell Hammett is alive and well and living in rural Maine, working as a freelance writer/reporter. This time Jack is up against gun runners, gangs and Old Order Mennonites in his quest for stories.… Continue reading “Straw Man (A Jack McMorrow Mystery #11) by Gerry Boyle”

Once Burned (A Jack McMorrow Mystery #10) by Gerry Boyle

The spirit of Dashiell Hammett’s hard-boiled Continental Op detective is alive and well in Gerry Boyle’s Jack McMorrow. Given, he is a somewhat kinder, gentler version, but don’t let the façade fool you: Jack means business. Once Burned (2015, Islandport Press) is #10 in the Jack McMorrow series based on the activities of the investigative reporter created by Maine author Gerry Boyle.

A Serial Arsonist in a Small Town

The small town of Sanctuary, Maine is being systematically targeted by a serial arsonist that knows his craft.… Continue reading “Once Burned (A Jack McMorrow Mystery #10) by Gerry Boyle”

Strangers on the Beach by Josh Pahigian

Maine resident Josh Pahigian’s first novel Strangers on a Beach (2012, Islandport Press) is what I consider the perfect type of “summer read”. By that I mean it is a mystery/thriller that will hold your attention until the end, the type of book to take on vacation, one you can put down to have some fun, then pick up when you have a relaxing moment. That is not to say you cannot read this in the dead of winter; it’s just the location of the book (Old Orchard Beach, Maine) lends itself to summer and playing in the waves or sitting on the beach getting some sun.… Continue reading “Strangers on the Beach by Josh Pahigian”

What Kills Good Men by David Hood

Any work of fiction that begins with a drunken vagrant talking to a bloated one-eyed corpse certainly has my attention, and that is the way What Kills Good Men (Vagrant Press, 2015) begins. It is the Halifax waterfront in the year 1899. The fledgling Dominion of Canada has sent troops to fight for the British Empire in the Boer War. The American Civil war is still fresh in people’s minds.… Continue reading “What Kills Good Men by David Hood”