- A GENTLEMAN OF FORTUNE by Anna Dean
- DEATH ON THE ROMNEY MARCH by Deryn Lake
- A PLAGUE OF POISON by Maureen Ash
Whisper RidgeHome to DreamsOctober 2, 1992--April 12, 1996So reads the strange epitaph carved beside the door of the home called Whisper Ridge, a multimillion-dollar piece of architectural majesty that once housed the beginnings of a unique program for paroled murderers. The program never got off the ground, however, despite how passionate a woman named Alexandra Cantrell, daughter of a notorious Mafia don, and her husband, Joshua, had been about it. Still uninhabited twelve years later, the house remains as a strange monument to dangerous secrets, falling into ruin as the forest grows up around it.While the couple’s abrupt exit was unusual, it was also not regarded as suspicious. Private investigator Lincoln Perry isn’t thrilled about the situation, or his client: Parker Harrison served fifteen years for murder but claims Alexandra’s intervention saved his life. Now he wants to find her---and he’s not the only one.What seems at first like the simplest of jobs proves to be an undertaking that will challenge both Perry’s abilities as a detective and his commitment to that calling.
In fourteenth-century Devon, runaway villeins were brutally punished if apprehended by their masters. But when Peter Bruther flees the home of Sir William Beauscyr, he puts himself in the protection of the king by setting up as a tin miner on the moors. And the bailiff of Lydford, Simon Puttock, has to inform an irate Sir William that he has no legal claim on his wayward servant. When Bruther's body is found hanging from a tree, Simon, assisted by the former Knight Templar Sir Baldwin Furnshill, finds himself investigating cold-blooded murder. And there's no shortage of suspects, from Sir William himself, to his feuding sons, to Thomas Smyth, a wealthy tinner who runs a ruthlessly enforced protection racket funded by landowners. The pressure is on Simon and Baldwin to unravel the truth before further violence ensues.
With the War of the Roses a distant backdrop, the recently widowed Roger arrives in the town of Totnes, where he is asked to guard a fine house in the absence of its owner, Eudo Colet. A tavernkeeper, intimating witchcraft, tells Roger about the strange disappearance and death of Mary and Andrew, Colet's stepchildren, who had recently lost their mother, heiress Rosamund Crouchback. The children's nurse, a poor cousin of the dead heiress who hates Colet, asks the chapman to investigate. It was believed that the children, whose mutilated bodies were later found in the river, could not have left the house unobserved. At the time of their disappearance, Colet had been in the company of a town notable. Probing the seemingly prosperous and contented village society, Roger uncovers deep wells of greed and jealousy.
This was actually very difficult. I've spent way too much time on this list. I've added and deleted a lot of names. Some because I think they're good but I haven't gotten around to reading a bunch like Ian Rankin, some because I think they are top writers like Sayers and Christie or Lawrence Block because I haven't read recently. I haven't even gotten to the Roman histmysts so I can't list them. Some are authors that I've just started reading and I know there's a lot in the series so they are favorable in my view right now. Some not included I like a lot but they don't have "heft" enough yet. It may have been easier to do a list of 10 or 20. Thirty gives too much leeway. I could still swap out about five names and still not be satisfied.
One noticeable thing when I was looking through my black book of things I've read, there's a lot of authors I've enjoyed over even the past five years who are writing anymore. How sad.
PK the Bookeemonster
Sister Fidelma of the Celtic Church in Ireland, aided as before by Brother Eadulf of Canterbury have traveled to Rome, where Fidelma is to deliver messages to His Holiness and where Eadulf will serve as scribe to archbishop-designate Wighard of Canterbury, the guest of Bishop Gelasius at Lateran Palace. Among the many pilgrims in the city to witness Wighard's ordination are Abbott Puttoc of Saxony, an ambitious libertine, and haughty Abbess Wulfrun and her companion-servant Sister Eafa of Kent. Before the ceremony can take place, though, Wighard is found strangled in his quarters, and Irish monk Ronan Ragallach is accused of the killing but escapes his captors. Not completely convinced of Ronan's guilt, and aware of Fidelma and Eadulf's previous successes, Bishop Gelasius asks their help and assigns soldier Licinius to ease their way. As Fidelma goes about the tedious questioning of everyone in the vicinity at the crucial time, the body count begins to mount and various intricate plots are uncovered.
When coroner Sir John de Wolfe is summoned to investigate the murder of a tin miner, he has little idea how difficult this new investigation will prove to be. The victim worked for the powerful mine owner, Walter Knapman, and the motive seems to be sabotaging Walter’s business. But the tinners have their own laws, and they are none too pleased at Crowner John’s interference. And then Walter Knapman disappears. Only Gwyn, Crowner John’s right-hand man, seems to be of any help—until he’s arrested for murder and put on trial for his life.
It was published in 2003 and has 367 pages.Gemma accepts the invitation of a married friend, Hazel Cavendish, to attend a cooking weekend in Innesfree, Scotland. Gemma thinks the misty, atmospheric landscape of the Highlands, where fine whiskey is distilled and the brogues of the natives ring like music in the air, will be just what she needs to complete her recovery. However, Gemma's hopes are soon dashed by Hazel's revelation that she has come to Innesfree to meet her former lover, Donald Brodie, a handsome distillery owner. When someone shoots Donald dead, Hazel becomes a prime suspect. Gemma investigates, but must be careful to avoid stepping on the toes of DCI Alun Ross, the local authority in charge. Duncan leaves his own problems with his son, Kit, behind in London and joins Gemma in Scotland, but it's Gemma who mainly ferrets out the secrets of the large list of suspects, any one of whom could be the murderer.
The estimable Benjamin Weaver, an 18th-century London thieftaker, finds himself working reluctantly for a mysterious gentleman, Jerome Cobb. On Cobb's orders, Weaver takes employment as a security man at the British East India Company's headquarters, where he tries to obtain information about the death of one Absalom Pepper, of whom virtually nothing is known. To keep Weaver in line, Cobb has blackmailed Weaver's friend Moses Franco, close confederate Elias Gordon and his beloved uncle Miguel. As usual, several beautiful women play roles in the complicated plot, which involves industrial spying and the international textile trade.
Features Sir John Fielding--blind, brilliant, compassionate magistrate of London's Bow Street Court--and Jeremy Proctor, the narrator, a penniless, intelligent 13-year-old orphan whom Sir John has taken into his household. Exercising the broad magisterial powers of the era, the judge investigates the death of wealthy Lord Richard Goodhope, who was discovered shot through the head, gun at his feet, behind the locked door of his library. Though the initial finding is suicide, Jeremy notices a clue that points to murder, a conclusion bolstered by the findings of surgeon Gabriel Donnelly. The investigation of Lord Richard's dissolute life, including extramarital affairs and gambling forays (sometimes shared with his Jamaica-based half-brother during his visits to London), seems to lead nowhere until Sir John commands all interested parties to gather at the murder scene, where he engineers a shocking solution to the crime.
In the trauma center of Atlanta’s busiest hospital, Sara Linton treats the city’s poor, wounded, and unlucky—and finds refuge from the tragedy that rocked her life in rural Grant County. Then, in one instant, Sara is thrust into a frantic police investigation, coming face-to-face with a tall driven detective and his quiet female partner…. three unforgettable characters from collide for the first time, entering an electrifying race against the clock—and a duel with unspeakable human evil. In the backwoods of suburban Atlanta, where Sara’s patient was found, local police have set up their investigation. But Georgia Bureau of Investigation detective Will Trent doesn’t wait for the go-ahead from his boss—he plunges through police lines, through the brooding woods, and single-handedly exposes a hidden house of horror buried beneath the earth. Then he finds another victim.… Wresting the case away from the local police chief, Will and his partner, Faith Mitchell—a woman keeping explosive secrets of her own—are called into a related investigation. Another woman—a smart, upscale, independent young mother—has been snatched. For the two cops out on the hunt, for the doctor trying to bring her patient back to life, the truth hits like a hammer: the killer’s torture chamber has been found, but the killer is still at work.
In the fall of 1715, supporters of the Pretender James Stuart launch a revolution that threatens to overthrow George I. As a result, all Roman Catholics have been banished from the city of London and freedom of speech is greatly restricted. Accused of printing seditious pamphlets, Mrs. Kean’s brother Jeremy has been sent to Newgate prison, where he soon finds himself charged with murder. Steadfastly maintaining his innocence, Jeremy turns to the duo to help save his life. However, Mrs. Kean and Blue Satan can only uncover the motive that reveals the killer by first understanding the murderous deed.
John Rawlings, the exuberant young apothecary, is celebrating his in The Devil's Tavern, a popular if notorious haunt for sailors and smugglers. Stumbling across a corpse that has been fished out of the Thames, he identifies it as Sir William Hartfield, the bridegroom who had failed to show at his own wedding earlier that day. As the drowning reveals itself as murder, Rawlings is called upon by London's revered sightless magistrate, John Fielding, to investigate the colourful members of Sir William's family - from terrible old Lady Hodkin to her downtrodden daughter, and from Roger, flamboyant man of fashion to the outrageous twins who share an elaborate past.
A murderous town-and-gown conflict propels the action. The various university colleges have been keeping students' rents low so they can afford their academic fees, but avaricious landlords now want to triple the rents, a threat to the colleges' existence. Meanwhile, Bartholomew and his three fellow Cambridge physicians find their income drained off by the chicanery of phony medicus Richard Arderne, out to make a killing healing the sick and raising the dead by waving a supposedly magic feather. Three grisly murders add to Brother Michael and Bartholomew's woes.