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Showing posts by: Kathleen George click to see Kathleen George's profile
Aug 14 2013 9:30am

Fresh Meat: Good as Gone by Douglas Corleone

Good as Gone by Douglas CorleoneGood as Gone by Douglas Corleone is the first book in the Simon Fisk international thriller series (available August 20, 2013).

Douglas Corleone has a new protagonist and this new guy will take you to Europe.  He has enough language to handle basics in Paris, Berlin, Warsaw and Krakow, Odessa, and Portugal.  If you know hello and good morning and thanks, you will enjoy the reminders.  The whole feeling is of a knowing traveler—hip, aware of the wealthy and the poor, the sophisticated and the seedy.  There is a club scene in Paris with multiple brands of Ecstasy.  That segment was fun for me, experiencing a rave in the great city.   When it comes to drugs, reading is how I experience them—safely. 

Former U.S. Marshall Simon Fisk has a specialty.  He recovers children kidnapped by one parent determined to get the child away from the other parent.  Each country has laws about how extraditions are handled, which parent is in the right, etc.  And Simon’s work, we learn early on, has got him into trouble; he’s a wanted man.  When the French police descend on him as he’s trying to leave the country, things look grim, but they have an alternative for him, a deal.  If he will find one child, Lindsay Sorkin, maybe they can look the other way.

[Looking the other way might be a good idea right now...]

Mar 14 2012 10:30am

Fresh Meat: Scoundrels, Edited by Gary Phillips

Scoundrels, edited by Gary PhillipsScoundrels is an anthology of original short stories from award-winning crime writers, edited by Gary Phillips (available March 18, 2012).

Once I drafted a novel in which the main crime pages were devoted to petty financial crimes—check-kiting to be specific. No, no, said my editor. They’ve got to kill each other. I quickly learned that trouble might start with money, but blood was usually necessary. Many of the contributors to Scoundrels got that lesson. Blood doesn’t have to be scary. Murder doesn’t have to hurt. In fact the title of the collection is somewhat cheerful and so is the tone—in spite of the body count or maybe even because of it. Lots of people die, but most stories are a lark. They feature smart talk and the kind of witty alienation that marks characters in the tradition of Elmore Leonard.

The collection, fourteen stories altogether, is edited by Gary Phillips. The housing crisis and bust provide the fuel for a good many of them because the collection is supposed to be about financial crimes with a big C and in our recent memory are the many people who have been wiped out by big bankers. The first three housing/banking stories set the tone of the whole. “What The Creature Hath Built” uses a two-men-in a bar premise with the stranger who walks in and who has a secret (well, they all have secrets). The stranger is the narrating protagonist.

[Your money and your life...]

Oct 7 2011 10:30am

Marjorie Allingham: It’s All in the Talk

Tiger in the Smoke by Margery AllinghamGun wielding, physical fights, explosions, exotic weapons—none are more threatening or fearsome than . . . words. One of the scariest scenes ever in mysteries has stuck with me for life and that is the antepentultimate (I just learned that word) scene in Margery Allingham’s The Tiger in the Smoke. Oh, there is such a long build up to it and we know, we learn early as readers, that what goes forth as A will come back as not A.  That is, something is going to reverse. So Canon Avril, nice fellow, man of the cloth—humble variety, is up at night and the Canon is so beloved that everyone wishes to keep him safe. His housekeeper gives him a draught of sleepy-making liquid, his daughter has made him a warm wooly monk’s robe. Yet he is awake. Thinking. Wandering his rooms. And we know as early as when he puts on the slippers with the leather bottoms that he is going to go out.

[To danger!]

Aug 5 2011 1:00pm

Hideout: New Excerpt

Kathleen George

Hideout by Kathleen George Jack and Ryan Rutter are riding wild in their red truck one May night. Ryan is crazy with booze and crack. Jack is trying to calm Ryan when Ryan hits and kills a young mother of two on Pittsburgh’s North Side. The brothers flee north to Sugar Lake. It’s still early in the season so nobody is in the summer homes except Addie Ward, a lively older woman who is anticipating the arrival of the man who lives next door. Detective Colleen Greer is the first on the scene of the young woman’s death. She and Commander Richard Christie, along with Christie’s favorite detectives, Artie Dolan and John Potocki, must trace the Rutter boys from the slimmest of leads.


Chapter 1

Commander Christie slapped down a file folder and got up to look out his office door. It was late on a Saturday in early May and there was nothing going on in Homicide. Some of his detectives were relieved about the slack; others were restless. The few who were in were slogging through paperwork.

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