Our Mystery of the Month is original, twisted and gruesomely fascinating. Sorry by Zoran Drvenkar is a thriller unlike any other, in which a murderer manipulates an agency called "Sorry" that specializes in cleaning up other people's mistakes.
BookPage Whodunit columnist Bruce Tierney writes, "Dark, demented, radical and grotesquely humorous, Sorry upends every convention of modern fiction craft, and brilliantly. Indeed, Sorry might well be the Mystery of the Year!"
In a 7 questions interview with BookPage, German novelist Zoran Drvenkar shared a handful of his favorite books and some excellent writing advice.
Does this dark thriller sound like your type of creepy read?
It's sinister, it's dark -- it's everything we'd hope from a debut thriller. S.J. Watson has crafted "unquestionably a suspenseful and gripping psychological thriller" of Before I Go to Sleep (Harper).
Its premise is familiar yet decidedly unique -- an amnesiac woman begins to spiral into paranoia, as each morning she awakes, she cannot remember her own life. How can she possible figure out the truth about her life, her marriage, anything, when she can't remember any of it?
Sounds intense, and so is this cool trailer:
Be sure to check our our interview with S.J. Watson!
Peter Spiegelman's fourth and newest thriller, Thick as Thieves, is one of our Whodunit picks for August, and reviewer Bruce Tierney called it "genre-defining" and "twisty as a corkscrew." No surprise there, as Spiegelman's book is not only the story of a "dream crime," but it is also one of the most exciting thrillers to hit shelves this summer.
Check out our Q&A with Spiegelman for his take on crime thrillers, great books and great writing.
And if you needed any more convincing about Thick as Thieves, here's the trailer:
Spiegelman's newest is already on shelves. Will you make room for it on your TBR list?
Chevy Stevens' Still Missing was one of my favorite suspense novels of 2010. It's a disturbing, sexy page-turner with a fantastic hook: What if a Realtor got abducted during an open house? (Remind me to never go to an open house by myself.)
I interviewed Chevy for BookPage.com back in July. I asked her about her characters, her writing process and the emotional repercussions of writing viscerally painful scenes . . . but what I was really interested in was when we'll be hearing from her again.
Now we know. On July 5, St. Martin's will publish Never Knowing, a companion book to Still Missing. Chevy gave me a preview of the novel in our interview:
Never Knowing isn’t a direct sequel, but it does have the same therapist, Nadine, who we met in Still Missing. Sara, the main character in Never Knowing, has a different dynamic with Nadine than Annie did, and also a unique energy of her own, so it’s interesting for me to see how that drives the story forward.
In Never Knowing, Sara is 34-years-old and happy—although she longs to learn about her birth parents. Here's more from the publisher's description:
She discovers her biological father is an infamous killer who’s been hunting women every summer for over thirty years. Sara tries to come to terms with her horrifying parentage — and her fears that she’s inherited more than his looks — with her therapist, Nadine, who we first met in Still Missing. But Sara soon realizes the only thing worse than finding out your father is a killer is him finding out about you.
Eek! Sounds creepy to me. Did you read Still Missing? Will you read Never Knowing?
I linked to the book trailer for The Poison Tree a couple weeks ago, and I thought you'd be interested in this follow-up. I got my hands on the novel (Erin Kelly's debut) last week and finished the novel yesterday.
It is fantastic—a dark, sultry, obsessive love story/thriller with some very disturbing twists. Here's a bit more from The Poison Tree's review in BookPage:
Perfectly paced, it starts with a bang and teems with twists that will keep you guessing right up until its thrilling and shocking conclusion. Kelly masterfully ratchets up the suspense, constantly causing readers to reappraise what is true as well as which dark and dirty secret will be unearthed next, all while nimbly maneuvering back and forth in time to keep tensions running high.
Have you read this novel? What new releases have been calling your name?
Today is the 202nd anniversary of the birth of Edgar Allan Poe—the perfect day to announce the nominees for the 2011 Edgar Allan Poe Awards (honoring the best in the mystery genre). You can see the full list on the TheEdgars.com, but I thought I'd give a special shout out to a couple of the categories, both packed with BookPage favorites.
Nominees for Best Novel include:
Caught by Harlan Coben
Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin
Faithful Place by Tana French
The Queen of Patpong by Timothy Hallinan
The Lock Artist by Steve Hamilton
I'd Know You Anywhere by Laura Lippman
Nominees for Best First Novel by an American Author include:
In the Best Novel category, I've got my fingers crossed for Tom Franklin's atmospheric page-turner, Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter. (Okay—maybe I'm biased because I interviewed the guy in person.) In the other category, I'd be thrilled to see Paul Doiron take home the prize. After mystery columnist Bruce Tierney declared The Poacher's Son to be "one of the best debut novels in recent memory," I asked Doiron to write a guest post on how he came to write about the Maine wilderness. Check it out here.
The winners will be announced on April 28 in New York City . . . what books are you rooting for?
It's been another great week of reading blogs—especially because of all the spooky and kooky holiday posts. (I've already mentioned a couple this morning.)
A few of my favorite posts from the week:
Leading up to the 31st, Jenn of Jenn's Bookshelves has been hosting a wonderful (and freaky!) series called Halloween Fright Fest. Two of my favorite posts are linked above, on what makes a book fit into the horror vs. thriller genre.
Horror forces us to realize and confront our fears. In many cases, as I’ve stated repeatedly, horror forces us to examine social issues that are often ignored or frowned upon. Notice I didn’t state that said writing must contain vampires, ghosts, werewolves, or anything supernatural?
A thriller is a story where a basically innocent person endures increasingly terrible events until they can’t take it anymore, and in a fit of fight-or-flight syndrome, they choose to run. (By the way, the post on thrillers was a guest post from Carrie of The Books I Read.)
October's Compendium of Literary Links
Posted by Greg on The New Dork Review of Books
I highlighted The New Dork Review of Books a couple months ago in "Best of the Blogs" and have enjoyed perusing this smart and funny blog ever since. Today (because we all love roundups!), I want to direct you to a "compendium of literary links"—a "few really good, really long articles" about books and reading. The separation of art and artist. Nicole Krauss. Philip Roth. It's good stuff!
What blog posts have you enjoyed this week?
Edward Conlon, author of best-selling memoir Blue Blood, will make his fiction debut this spring with Red on Red.
Blue Blood was an account of everyday copdom—"a fascinating and frightening world that is never far from our own doorstep."
Red on Red is the fictional story of two NYPD detectives with "radically different approaches to life and work":
One is drawn to cases of rough and ordinary urban combat; the other is compelled by uncanny "ghost stories," suicides, and missing persons.
Memoirs are extra-exciting because they're based on real events. But can Conlon deliver as a fiction writer? We'll have to wait until April to find out.
Here's one item we can guarantee will be found under many readers' trees this holiday season: a boxed set of Stieg Larsson's Millennium Trilogy. Packaged in a slipcase, the three books include maps and beautifully designed endpapers. The set also includes On Stieg Larsson, a collection of essays about and correspondence with the author. Retail price is $99, and you can buy them on November 26.
Either of these on your gift list—or wish list!—this year?
When we hear about politicians landing book deals, the book in question is almost always a memoir or some sort of inspirational guide.
So, I was interested to see that former U.S. Senator Bob Graham (D-Florida)—also a former governor of Florida—has signed a deal to write The Key to the Kingdom, "a topical and provocative debut political thriller." The book will be published by Vanguard Press, which is part of the Perseus Books Group.
Graham is best known for his tenure as Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee during and after 9/11 (he opposed the Iraq War). He is also known for his "workdays," when he decided to "experience the lives of ordinary Floridians firsthand by working their jobs."
He worked as a teacher, a plumber, a social worker, a shrimper . . . and now he can add "thriller writer."
Will you look out for this book? On a related note, former White House Communications Director Nicolle Wallace's debut novel, Eighteen Acres, hits shelves on October 19.