Tuesday, January 01, 2019

February Treasures in My Closet

Nothing like jumping right from New Year's to February book releases. Let's jump right into those forthcoming books.

Bree Baker follows up Live and Let Chai with No Good Tea Goes Unpunished. Evelyn Swan is catering her childhood friend's beachfront wedding, but when the groom is found floating facedown in the surf, the bride is the primary suspect. Now, Evelyn wants to find the true killer. (Release date is Feb. 26.)

James Boice's mystery, Who Killed the Fonz? was just fun for all of us who remember "Happy Days" with nostalgia and fondness. Richie is now Richard Cunningham, a screenwriter living in LA, and married to Lori Beth. When Lori Beth and Richie's mother tell him Fonzie died in a motorcycle accident, he returns to Milwaukee, and learns it really is hard to return home. But, it's not so hard for the reader who will "hear" the TV voices in the book. (Release date is Feb. 19.) - And, thanks to Glen Davis for catching my original error, putting this book in the wrong city.

Chief Inspector Salvo Montalbano returns in Andrea Camilleri's The Overnight Kidnapper. At times, Montalbano appears ridiculous, as when he mourns the death of a fly, "He had killed an innocent fly, mistaking it for the guilty one", but he's quite savvy when investigating his latest case. Women are being flagged down by s a stranded motorist and chloroformed. Nothing is taken. The women are fine, but they all work in banks. Montalbano reminds me of Bill Crider's Sheriff Dan Rhodes in translation. (Release date is Feb. 5.)

In Mary Daheim's latest Bed-and-Breakfast mystery, A Case of Bier, innkeeper Judith McMonigle Flynn heads to Banff, on vacation with her husband, cousin Renie, and Renie's husband. While the men head off on a fishing trip, Judith involves herself and Renie with an unusual family, there to properly observe the death of their patriarch. Except the man isn't dead yet. (Release date is Feb. 12.)

The Medlar team is back in Jude Deveraux' A Justified Murder. The trio of Sara Medlar, her niece, Kate, and Jack Wyatt, all vowed not to get involved in a murder investigation again. Then, Janet Beeson is murdered, and Sara is called to photograph the scene. The sheriff is pushing the group to investigate, knowing he'll be pushed out of the case. And, half the town of Lachlan, Florida, wants to confess to the Medlars, saying they once treated Janet badly. Was Janet Beeson as saintly as she appeared? (Release date is Feb. 26.)

Fans of Jeff Cohen's Double Feature mysteries should enjoy Margaret Dumas' first Movie Palace mystery, Murder at the Palace. Nora Paige moves to San Francisco to become the manager for a friend's historic movie theater that shows classic films. She's going to work with a team of misfit film buffs, the ghost of a 1930's usherette, and discover shady finances. She also discovers the body of a murdered stranger. Dumas intersperses the story with appropriate reviews of classic films. It's a fun book. (Release date is Feb. 12.)

The back jacket of Charles Finch's latest Charles Lenox mystery, The Vanishing Man, reads "London, 1853. The secret pursuit of a long-lost portrait of Shakespeare and a shocking murder send Charles Lenox on the hunt for a criminal mastermind. Is the key to an extraordinary mystery hiding in plain sight?" (Release date is Feb. 19.)

Anissa Gray's debut novel is The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls, a story of mothers and daughters and family. The Butler family has had their share of trials - as sisters Althea, Viola, and Lillian can attest, but nothing prepared them for the trial that will upend their lives. Althea, the eldest and substitute matriarch, is a force that is sometimes appreciated by her younger sisters. But, they're stunned when she and her husband, Proctor, are arrested, and the family goes from one of the most respected in town to an utter disgrace. Even though her sisters don't know what happened, they rally to care for Althea's teenage daughters. (Release date is Feb. 19.)

I'm looking forward to Victoria Hamilton's A Gentlewoman's Guide to Murder. The shocking murder of Sir Henry Claybourne leaves Regency London scandalized. But, genteel sponsor Miss Emmeline St. Germaine fears her secret identity might be disclosed. Just hours before the knight's death, she threatened him with a knife as she rescued a scullery maid he had procured for his pleasure. Now, she must solve the crime to save her own reputation and life. (Release date is Feb. 8.)

Readers will be waiting to read Jane Harper's latest novel set in Australia. In The Lost Man, two brothers meet at the remote fence separating their cattle ranches in the lonely outback. The third brother, the middle child, lies dead at their feet. Amid the grief, suspicion grows. Was Cam's death really what it seems? (Release date is Feb. 5.)

I hadn't read a Detective Inspector Bill Slider mystery, but Cynthia Harrod-Eagles hooked me with Headlong. DCI Slider is charged with finding it was an accidental death in the case of literary agent Ed Wiseman. It isn't long, though, before Slider knows it was murder, and the list of suspects includes the one woman connected to the Borough Commander. (Release date is Feb. 1.)

Serena Kent introduces Penelope Kite in the first in a new series, Death in Provence. At fifty, Penelope may appear to be an innocent divorce who leaves her adult children and badly behaved grandchildren behind in England when she buys a rundown property in Provence. When she finds a corpse in her swimming pool, the police, mayor and the ever-present realtor treat her as if she doesn't know anything. But, they don't know Penelope isn't as naive as they assume. (Release date is Feb. 19.)

I hope Finding Dorothy by Elizabeth Letts lives up to my expectations. It tells the story behind The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, through the eyes of L. Frank Baum's wife, Maud. She's seventy-seven when she learns M-G-M is adapting her late husband's masterpiece, and she's determined to help the producers stay true to the spirit of the book. But, once she hears Judy Garland, Maud resolves to protect her- as she had once tried to protect the real Dorothy. (Release date is Feb. 12.)

We Must Be Brave is Frances Liardet's American debut. In December 1940, in the disorderly evacuation of Southampton, England, newly married Ellen Parr finds a small child asleep on the backseat of an empty bus. No one knows who little Pamela is. Ellen didn't want children with her older husband, but, when she takes Pamela into her home and heart, she wants only Pamela. Three golden years pass, until Pamela is taken away, screaming. It's a "novel about courage and kindness, hardship and friendship, and the astonishing power of love." (Release date is Feb. 26.)

Here's one I'm looking forward to reading, Kate Mascarenhas' The Psychology of Time Travel. In 1967, four female scientists work together to build the world's first time machine. Just as they're about to debut their creation, one of the women suffers a breakdown, putting everything in jeopardy, including the future of time travel. To protect their invention, one of the women is banished from the team, and her contributions are erased. Fifty years later, when time travel is big business, the granddaughter of one of the women is obsessed with the story. When her grandmother receives a newspaper clipping from the future, reporting the murder of an unidentified woman, Ruby is convinced it's her grandmother, and wonders if the murder can be prevented. (Release date is Feb. 12.)

Final Exam is the latest Witch City mystery by Carol J. Perry. Lee Barrett is a field reporter for WICH-TV in Salem, Massachusetts. She's excited about her latest story, divers trying to recover a vintage sports car from the local quarry. But, Lee's Aunt Ibby doesn't want to hear about it, although she seems to already know more than she's telling. (Release date is Feb. 26.)

Lissa Marie Redmond's cold case police detective, Lauren Riley, takes center stage in The Murder Book. She has a touch of OCD, which wouldn't let her leave when her partner did, until she finished her work. That OCD almost finishes Lauren. When she wakes up in the hospital, she only knows she was attacked and left for dead, and her attacker was a cop. (Release date is Feb. 8.)

Sharma Shields tells the story of The Cassandra in her latest novel. It's "the riveting story of a woman who goes to work in a top secret research facility during World War II, only to be tormented by visions of what the successful completion of the project will mean for humankind. (Release date is  Feb. 12.)

If you haven't found a book or two to read in this collection, maybe you'll find one in the list below. Enjoy!

Anders, Charlie Jane - The City in the Middle of the Night (Feb. 12)
Brennert, Alan - Daughter of Moloka'i (Feb. 19)
Choo, Yangsze - The Night Tiger (Feb. 12)
Ellis, Karen - Last Night (Feb. 26)
Hruska, Alan - The Inglorious Arts (Feb. 19)
Kang, Han - The White Book (Feb. 19)
Kepler, Lars - Stalker (Feb. 5)
Love, Melissa Scrivner - American Heroin: A Novel (Feb. 19)
Luiselli, Valeria - Lost Children Archive (Feb. 12)
Mehra, Nishida J. - Brown White Black: An American Family at the Intersection of Race, Gender, 
     Sexuality, and Religion (Feb. 5)  
Mizrahi, Isaac - I.M. (Feb. 26)
Popova, Maria - Figuring (Feb. 5)
Santopolo, Jill - More Than Words (Feb. 5)
Scapellato, Joseph - The Made-Up Man (Feb. 5)
Sigurdardottir, Yrsa - The Reckoning (Feb. 12)
Tudor, C.J. - The Hiding Place (Feb. 5)
Wilkinson, Lauren - American Spy (Feb. 12)
Wright, Snowden - American Pop (Feb. 5)
Yarros, Rebecca - The Last Letter (Feb. 26)
Zgheib, Yara - The Girls at 17 Swann Street ( Feb. 5)


Deb said...

So many new books! I fear my TBR pile is really going to grow! Not a bad thing!

SandyG265 said...

Who Killed the Fonz sounds like fun.

Jeff Meyerson said...

Good one! I've had the Camilleri on pre-order for weeks. Just put the Jane Harper on hold.

I've been a fan of the Bill Slider series for years, and even ordered a bunch of the more recent books from England at a time they weren't available here. I've read the first dozen and have the next five sitting on the shelf.

Margie Bunting said...

All four of the Cynthia Harrod-Eagles books I've read were very enjoyable--three of them rated (by me) highly, so I appreciate knowing about the new one. I also have the Jane Harper on hold. I agree that The Psychology of Time Travel Looks awesome, and I have added it to my list, along with a couple of others you mentioned.

February looks like an awesome month for books. Here are some more I already have already put on hold: No Mercy by Joanna Schaffhausen; When You Read This by Mary Adkins; That Old Scoundrel Death by Bill Crider; Moon Sister by Lucinda Riley; I Owe You One by Sophie Kinsella; Murders and Metaphors by Amanda Flower; Wedding Guest by Jonathan Kellerman; Good Riddance by Elinor Lipman. Whew!

Netteanne said...

Three of my favorites are coming out in February. Bill Slider is just wonderful - have read everyone of them and enjoy them wholeheartedly. I adore Charles Finch and his life in London - have not read them all and have read early and late ones. Have to catch up. And I just finished the first Jude Devereaux book and totally enjoyed it - The Willing Murder.

Lots of other wonderful books coming out, and sadly it will be the last Bill Crider book. I have read every one of those as well.

As usual Lesa you have given us lots of wonderful choices and the hold list just grows and grows.

Happy New Year everyone.

Jeff Meyerson said...

I've had an ARC of Bill's last book since his daughter Angela gave it to me at Bouchercon, but I am delaying reading it for now.

Lesa said...

Oh, darn. I missed adding Bill Crider's book to the list because I read it so long ago. Unlike Jeff, I didn't wait.

Glen Davis said...

The next book in the Gray Man series, Mission Critical by Mark Greaney also comes out in February.

I thought Happy Days was set in Milwaukee?

caryn said...

Finding Dorothy, The Care and Feeding of Ravenous Girls, the Harper and the Finch are all already either on pre-order from Amazon or on my request list at the library. And now I have a couple new to add-the Fonz book, the Time travel one and the Provence one.

Kevin R. Tipple said...

I have had the ARC for Bill Crider's book for a couple of months now. I had to work up my nerve to read it. It is mighty good. I just finished it a couple of days ago and need to write my review.

Found out today that at Bouchercon 2019 here in Dalls, Bill Crider day will be celebrated on 11/1. Pretty damn cool.


Kay said...

So many lovely books. I've preordered Jane Harper's book. Loved her other two. I also want to read the Fonz book and, yes, I suspect I'll hear the voices of the actors in my head. There are a couple of others that are already on my list, but I'll take a closer look here. :-)

Jeff Meyerson said...

Kevin, we are registered for Bouchercon and hope to combine it with visits to Austin and San Antonio.

Kevin R. Tipple said...

I am also registered as I was told earlier today I have been gifted a regsitration by one person and the hotel room has also been comped by others. I am stunned.

Lesa said...

You're right, Glen. I'm going to go back and change it.

Lesa said...

Lots of good ones, Caryn!

Lesa said...

And, very deserved, Kevin. It's so good they're honoring Bill Crider. Looking forward to it!

Lesa said...

Oh, yes, Kay. It's fun to hear those voices in the Fonz book.

Glen Davis said...

Lesa, that's a relief. I thought we had some sort of Mandela Effect thing going on!

Kathy Reel said...

Lesa, what a great list! I have lots of these on my February list, which is already full to bursting, and now you go and give me a few more to add. With January and February exploding with great books to read, I'm going to have to pray for some snow to get snowed in and just read.

Aimee Hix said...

My TBR pile just grew! :)

holdenj said...

Lots of good looking titles! I have been looking forward to Dorothy and the Fonz one looks like it has possibilities too!

Lesa said...

I'm never going to pray for snow, Kathy, but I do have a four-day weekend coming up!

Lesa said...

That's my whole purpose in life, Aimee, to grow TBR piles.

Lesa said...

Oh, I hope everyone who remembers "Happy Days" tries the Fonz. It's just fun, Holdenj.