Wild West

wild westIn “Buckskin” by Robert Knott, the  discovery of gold near Appaloosa spells trouble for Cole and Hitch© (Robert B. Parker).  Two mining factions square off over the claim.  When the shooting starts,  Cole and Hitch soon realized that one one of the gunmen pursing a personal vendetta.

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Last call

bernieMetropolis is the closing chapter in the Bernie Gunther thriller series by the late Philip Kerr, who passed away last year.  Just before his death, he was made a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. He won several Shamus awards and was a 3-time Edgar finalist.   This story goes back to the beginning, with Gunther’s first weeks on Berlin’s Murder Squad, where in addition to the political turmoil roiling the city, there is a killer on the loose.  Gunther must work his case in the atmosphere of a Nazified police department. “[ Metropolis is] a perfect goodbye–[or] first hello” (Washington Post)

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Real-life handmaids

talking    In “Women Talking” by Miriam Toews, eight Mennonite women gather in a hay loft for a secret meeting.  They are just a few of the women who have been visited and violated in the past two years by “night demons”, who they now know are men from their own community.  Illiterate, with little knowledge of the outside world and unable even to speak the language of the country they live in, they have to decide: should they stay or should they go.  Based on a real-life event, “This amazing novel …could be right out of “The Handmaid’s Tale” (Margaret Atwood).

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Historical dramas

hist fic gibson “The Yankee Widow” by Linda Lael Miller, our heroine farm  ends up in the middle of the Gettysburg battlefield. Things get interesting when a wounded Yank and a Johnny arrive at her door.  In ‘Resistance Women” by Jennifer Chiaverini, an American woman, her German-born husband, and their circle of friends in Berlin resolve to resist the Nazi regime.

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Beach reads

beach_readIt’s the first round of 2019  summer house and family reunion drama stories. In “Sunset Beach” by Mary Kay Andrews, a young woman inherits her grandparents’ storm-damaged beach bungalow.  It’s just that there are strings attached.  In “Blessing in Disguise” by Danielle Steel, a mother reconnects with her offspring in far flung locales. The weather for summer reading might not quite be there, but the books are!

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The usual suspects

quickIn “The 18th Abduction” by James Patterson (print and CD), an innocent night out after class for three teachers ends in kidnapping and murder.  The women’s murder club pitches in to catch  Patterson’s latest serial killer.  “Celtic Empire‘ by Clive Cussler (pirnt and CD) is actually about a secret stolen from an Egyptian tomb.  Dirk Pitt and co the follow the leads to a conformation in Eire.  In “The Night Window” by Dean Koontz, rogue FBI agent Jane Hawke wages her final battle against a terrifying conspiracy.  Suspense with a romantic twist is on hand with “Tightrope” by Amanda Quick. It’s about an unconventional women and a manly investigator who join forces to find a stolen prototype of a cipher machine.

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A real-life spy story

fourcadeMadame Fourcade’s Secret War” tells the  little-known  story of Marie-Madeleine Fourcade, the woman who headed the largest spy network in occupied France.   No other French spy network lasted as long or supplied as much crucial intelligence–including providing American and British military commanders with a 55-foot-long map of the beaches the Allies would land on D-Day. The Gestapo pursued them relentlessly.  Fourcade  moved her headquarters every few weeks, constantly changing her hair color, clothing, and identity. She was captured twice but managed to escape. France, slow to confront the stain of defeat and German collaboration, has been slow to honor her.  Lynne Olson’s story “should challenge any outdated assumptions about who deserves to be called a hero” (Washington Post).

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