May 15 - By far the best I have read so far this month is the latest by
S. J. Rozan, The Shanghai Moon: A Lydia Chin/Bill Smith Novel.
Setting her story alternately in contemporary Chinatown, New York and in Shanghai
during World War II, Rozan weaves together threads from the history of Jewish refugees
from Nazism in Shanghai and relations between different generations of Chinese immigrants
in today's New York. Those who don't know this author have a treat in store - there are
nine earlier novels in the Lydia Chin / Bill Smith series.
Also good recent novels by experienced writers are Borderline (Anna Pigeon) by Nevada Barr,
set in Texas in Big Bend National Park on the Rio Grande, and Bone by Bone by Carol O'Connell,
not a series book and set in California rather than New York. Two new authors with
very promising starts are The Replacement Child
by Christine Barber (Albuquerque, New Mexico), and
Old Flame: A Jackson Steeg Novel by Ira Berkowitz (Manhattan, Hell's Kitchen).
All four write well and do a good job of combining a sense of place with interesting
characters and plots.
May 31 - I just finished reading the second volume in Stieg Larsson's
Millennium series:Flickan Som Lekte Med Elden.
It's available in English translation as The Girl Who
Played with Fire, and in many other languages as well. It well disserves its high
reputation, The English translation of the third in the series,
The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest, is due out this fall.
Also very good, even if not matching the Stieg Larsson series, are the two other Swedish
mystery novels I read this month. Åke Edwardson's Himlen är
en plats på jorden (literally Heaven is a Place on Earth, but in English translation as
Frozen Tracks, is set in Gothenburg, and features Edwardson's
Inspector Erik Winter. Åsa Larsson's novels featuring lawyer Rebecka Martinsson, are set in
Sweden's far North, with its mixed Finnish, Sami, and Swedish population. The one I read was
The Black Path, the latest translated into English, which turned up at my
For those who enjoy Laurie King's Mary Russell & Sherlock Holmes series, the latest
(The Language of Bees) is probably not the best, but like the others it is a reliably
enjoyable read. The latest in John Lescoart's Dismas Hardy series (Betrayal) is definitely one of the
best in the series, moving from corruption and killings in Iraq to their aftermath in northern
More about these Authors
Nevada Barr on Amazon | Bookmooch | Wikipedia
Ake Edwardson on Amazon | Bookmooch | Wikipedia
Laurie R. King on Amazon | Bookmooch | Wikipedia
Asa Larsson on Amazon | Bookmooch | Wikipedia
Stieg Larsson on Amazon | Bookmooch | Wikipedia
John Lescroart on Amazon | Bookmooch | Wikipedia
Carol O Connell on Amazon | Bookmooch | Wikipedia
S. J. Rozan on Amazon | Bookmooch | Wikipedia