THE ACCIDENT by Chris Pavone

Isabel Reed, a literary agent for ATM, spends all night reading, “The Accident” by Anonymous, the new manuscript from her assistant Alexis who was very enthusiastic about it. The book has startling information about Charlie Wolfe, a major media figure with major political connections that is hoping to run for office himself. The information in the manuscript, if true, would certainly end Wolfe’s career as it describes a crime he apparently covered up while a student at Cornell University.

April 6, 2014 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: ,  · Posted in: California, Denmark, Edgar Award, New York City, Switzerland, Thriller/Spy/Caper, y Award Winning Author

THE BARKEEP by William Lashner

Justin Chase has adjusted to his life as a barkeep (and the Zen lifestyle) after several years of living without his mother and the man he believed murdered her, his father. However, a strange man, going by the odd name of Birdie Grackle, enters the bar where Justin works and tells him that Justin’s father did not murder his mother. He alleges that Birdie himself murdered her at the request of a woman who hired him to do it. Birdie says he doesn’t know who paid him but that for $10,000 he will track her down. Justin does not agree to pay Birdie and does not immediately believe what Birdie is telling him. With his brother Frank’s urging, Justin visits his father in prison for the first time since his father was sent there 6 years ago.

March 7, 2014 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: ,  · Posted in: Character Driven, Mystery/Suspense

NIGHT FILM by Marisha Pessl

This psychological, genre-bursting/ busting literary thriller took me on a high-speed chase into a Byzantine rabbit hole into the quirkiest, eeriest, darkest parts of the soul. Investigative reporter Scott McGrath is on a quest to exhume the facts of a young piano prodigy’s tragic end. Ashley Cordova, 24, daughter of cult-horror film director, Stanislav Cordova, was found dead–allegedly a suicide. The now reclusive director (30 years isolated from known whereabouts) is the reason for McGrath’s ruined reputation five years ago, and Scott is hungry to turn things around, upside down, and inside out to pursue Cordova again and save himself. And to disinter the “truth,” which itself can be an illusory concept in this cat and mouse thriller.

January 11, 2014 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , , , ,  · Posted in: 2013 Favorites, Horror, Literary, Mystery/Suspense, New York City, Reading Guide, Thriller/Spy/Caper

ASSUMPTION by Percival Everett

The hardscrabble desert land of New Mexico is the perfect setting for Percival Everett’s new novel, ASSUMPTION, mainly because it mirrors the protagonist’s character incredibly well. Ogden Walker is a deputy in the sheriff’s office in the small town of Plata, where he serves after a brief stint in the army. Plata might be where mom Eva Walker lives but Ogden finds her presence not enough of a comfort to overcome his unease with his mixed African American heritage (he is biracial) or his general malaise with what seems to be a dead-end career. He finds it hard to be content hunting for the small fish even if a colleague tells him, “A big fish is fun, I suppose, but so are small ones sometimes. Depends on the water. If I catch a ten-incher in a creek that’s two foot wide, that’s a big fish.”

November 17, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: Mystery/Suspense, Thriller/Spy/Caper, US Southwest, Wild West, y Award Winning Author

LIGHT FROM A DISTANT STAR by Mary McGarry Morris

Nellie Peck is thirteen years old going on forty. She is wise, intelligent and impulsive. Despite her precociousness, however, she is still a child. She lives with her parents and two siblings, Ruth and Henry; Ruth is a half-sister from a relationship that her mother had in high school. The Pecks are struggling financially. Nellie’s mother works as a hair dresser and Nellie’s father owns a hardware store that is slowly going under. Her father’s passion is his writing – he is writing a tome about the history of their town, Springvale. His goal is to get it self-published so that it can be read by a wide audience.

October 26, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , ,  · Posted in: Contemporary, Family Matters

NORTHWEST ANGLE by William Kent Krueger

In NORTHWEST ANGLE, William Kent Krueger’s 11th book in the award winning Cork O’Connor series, Cork and his family vacation in September on a houseboat in Canada, near the Northwest Angle area of Minnesota. Cork had hoped that his family, including his three children, Jenny, Annie and Steve and his sister-in-law Rose and her husband Mel, could finally get some time to relax and enjoy each other. They had all suffered the loss of Cork’s wife two year’s prior and they had not yet found any time to spend together especially since his kids had become older and living on their own.

Unfortunately for Cork and his family, the vacation becomes anything but enjoyable when soon after arrival, Cork and his older daughter Jenny become trapped in a major quick forming and very dangerous derecho storm that shipwrecks them on one of the many islands in the area.

October 2, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , ,  · Posted in: Family Matters, Literary, PEN/Hemingway Winner, Sleuths Series, Thriller/Spy/Caper