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Showing posts from May, 2009

2009 Anthony Award Nominees

This is a very strong list of nominees. Lots of big names and big books. I already have some thoughts I want to share, but I am in Wisconsin this week. I'm watching the Brewers game and enjoying time with my parents. Check back in a few days for ill advised commentary.

--EDIT-- It has been more than a few days for those ill advised comments, so you maybe one of the select few to actually read them.

Official announcement here.

BEST NOVEL
Trigger City by Sean Chercover - William Morrow
The Brass Verdict by Michael Connelly - Little, Brown and Company
Red Knife by William Kent Krueger - Atria
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson - Knopf
The Cruelest Month by Louise Penny - Minotaur

I am real curious to see how this shakes out. Last year's winner was the deserving WHAT THE DEAD KNOW by Laura Lippman. Not to diminish that win in any way, but the awards were given out in Baltimore. Again deserving, but decidedly lacking in excitement. Kreuger and Connelly are multiple winners of…

Macavity Award Nominations

A new set of nominations means I can shake off my terrible showing at last week's Edgar Awards and make a whole new bunch of predictions that will probably not come to fruition. I am now slightly concerned that my picks my set in motion forces that cause these books not to win. What a heavy, heavy burden I carry.

Anyway, I'm posting the nominees here although publicizedelsewhere already. I'll make picks when we are closer to the Indy B'Con where these awards will be announced.

Good luck to all of the nominees.

Best Mystery Novel
Trigger City - Sean Chercover -- Wm. Morrow
Where Memories Lie - Deborah Crombie -- Wm. Morrow
The Dying Breed (UK)/ The Price of Blood (US) - Declan Hughes -- John Murray/ Wm. Morrow
The Draining Lake - Arnaldur Indridason -- Minotaur
Curse of the Spellmans - Lisa Lutz -- Simon & Schuster
The Cruelest Month - Louise Penny -- Minotaur
The Fault Tree - Louise Ure -- Minotaur

Best First Mystery
Finding Nouf - Zoe Ferraris -- Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
The…

Revenge of the Spellmans - Review

I've read the Spellman trilogy, by Liza Lutz, in just over four months. This is surprising given my relative dissatisfaction with the first book. The chief crime of THE SPELLMAN FILES was trying too hard. The Edgar® nominated CURSE OF THE SPELLMANS was a pleasant surprise to me as a I felt the first 100 pages were more of the same. However, that book settled into an easy rhythm as the Ms. Lutz found a groove for her story and its multiple inhabitants.

So where does this leave REVENGE OF THE SPELLMANS? Third time is the charm I think. Probably not as enjoyable as CURSE OF THE SPELLMANS, but easily the book with the fewest problems. In REVENGE Ms. Lutz has finally focused her view to just one character, Isabel Spellman. Gone from the book are the tangents that led me away from Isabel and the 'main' story to highlight some ridiculous foible of any one of the dozen screwball characters Ms. Lutz was writing about. Here the writing feels more organic. REVENGE succeeds because of …