Detective and mystery stories

Unnatural Exposure

By Patricia Daniels Cornwell

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Kay Scarpetta, medical examiner, is up against an apparent serial murderer who leaves a fatal virus in his dismembered victims.
Part of a series.

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Where Are the Children?

By Mary Higgins Clark

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Here is the novel that established Clark as one of today's most phenomenally successful authors. After a terrible marriage and the tragic deaths of her two children, Nancy changes her name, hair, and residence and finally finds peace--until the nightmare begins again.
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The Angel of Darkness

By Caleb Carr

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"In The Angel of Darkness, Caleb Carr brings back the vivid world of his bestselling The Alienist but with a twist: this story is told by the former street urchin Stevie Taggert, whose rough life has given him wisdom beyond his years. Thus New York City, and the groundbreaking alienist Dr. Kreizler himself, are seen anew. It is June 1897.

"A year has passed since Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, a pioneer in forensic psychiatry, tracked down the brutal serial killer John Beecham with the help of a team of trusted companions and a revolutionary application of the principles of his discipline. Kreizler and his friends--high-living crime reporter John Schuyler Moore; indomitable, derringer-toting Sara Howard; the brilliant (and bickering) detective brothers Marcus and Lucius Isaacson; powerful and compassionate Cyrus Montrose; and Stevie Taggert, the boy Kreizler saved from a life of street crime--have returned to their former pursuits and tried to forget the horror of the Beecham case.

"But when the distraught wife of a Spanish diplomat begs Sara's aid, the team reunites to help find her kidnapped infant daughter. It is a case fraught with danger, since Spain and the United States are on the verge of war. Their investigation leads the team to a shocking suspect: a woman who appears to the world to be a heroic nurse and a loving mother, but who may in reality be a ruthless murderer of children."

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The Oxford Book of Gothic Tales

By Chris Baldick, editor

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"E. Nesbit's The Hursts of Hurstcote is only one of the many stories found in The Oxford Book of Gothic Tales, the first anthology of this spinetingling genre. Though Gothic fiction has generally been identified with Walpole's Castle of Otranto and the works of Ann Radcliffe, these thirty-seven selections compiled by Chris Baldick provide a unique look at the genre's development into its present-day forms. We see standard gothic elements of incest, murder, and greed in The Poisoner of Montremos, a late eighteenth-century story by Richard Cumberland. We find in Poe's The Fall of the House of Usher the tale that set a new standard of decadence for Gothic stories. In Hawthorne's Rappacini's Daughter, a young girl is raised on the very essence of poison.

"In Faulkner's A Rose for Emily, a woman's death satisfies a neighborhood's curiosity with a bizarre discovery. In other tales, a ghost reveals his sin of parricide, madness drives a man to murder,and a young girl spends her lifetime locked in a single room. All these stories and more contain the common elements of the gothic tale: a warped sense of time, a claustrophobic setting, a link to archaic modes of thought, dynastic corruption, and the impression of a descent into disintegration. Yet they also reveal the progression of the genre from stories of feudal villains amid crumbling ruins to a greater level of sophistication in which writers brought the gothic tale out of its medieval setting, and placed it in the contemporary world."

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The True Prince

By J. B. Cheaney

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Newly apprenticed to Shakespeare's theater company, Richard and Kit are drawn into a series of crimes involving the members of Queen Elizabeth's court.
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A Mystery of Errors

By Simon Hawke

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"Two travelers, Will Shakespeare-a fledgling dramatist, and Symington Smythe, an ostler and aspiring thespian, meet at a roadside inn and decide to cast their lot together for fame and fortune in the cutthroat world of the London theater in Elizabethan England..."

First of a series.

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Devil's Own Luck

By David Donachie

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Harry Ludlow, forced out of the Royal Navy, becomes a privateer in partnership with his younger brother James. But for the Ludlows, murder and intrigue take more of their time than hunting fat trading vessels. Harry and James find themselves aboard the Navy's 74-gun Magnanime. In command is a captain with whom Harry has crossed swords in the past. When James is found standing over the body of a dead officer, Harry's feud shifts into the background.

First of the Privateersman mystery series.

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Second Violin

By John Lawton

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With Europe on the brink of war, Frederick Troy, recently promoted to Scotland Yard's Murder Squad, is put in charge of rounding up a list of German and Italian enemy aliens, but as the bombs begin to fall on London, he finds himself investigating a series of murdered rabbis.
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Full Dark House

By Christopher Fowler

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"A bomb rips through present-day London, tragically ending the crime-fighting partnership of Arthur Bryant and John May begun more than a half-century ago during another infamous bombing: the Blitz of World War II. Desperately searching for clues to the saboteur’s identity, May finds the notes his old friend kept of their very first case and a past that may have returned--with murderous vengeance.

"It was an investigation that began with the grisly murder of a pretty young dancer. In a city shaken by war, a faceless killer stalked London’s theater row, creating his own sinister drama. And it would take Bryant’s unorthodox techniques and May’s dogged police work to catch a fiend whose ability to escape detection seemed almost supernatural—a murderer who decades later may have returned to kill one of them--and won’t stop until he kills the other."

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A Good Death

By Elizabeth Ironside

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"It' 1944 and Theo Cazalle is returning to the family he left in Bonnemort, an estate deep in the French countryside, when he went off to fight with the Free French. Memories of Bonnemort have sustained him through four years of war, but when at last he comes home, he finds his world in tatters. The house has been abandoned, a family servant has been shot, Theo' wife has been accused of collaborating, and a Nazi officer has been found dead in front of Bonnemort' front gate. To save his sanity, Theo must restore order to Bonnemort, but first he must understand the disorder into which it has fallen. Is his wife a whore? A murderer? Or could there be another alternative?"
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