Oct 17, 2005


The final issue of CrimeSpree for 2005 is coming your way. On the final page is our annual shout out for your favs of the year. So as management I’ll ask you to consider this page carefully and respond

Can you narrow down your list of favorite reads to 5? That’s what we’re asking you to do.

Ongoing series, your top five again. Which series do you never miss that did something different, took the tone of the series in a new direction? or maybe had a fabulous character twist? Did an author you adore stretch to new lengths, or clean up loose ends from previous books? We’re asking for five, you can do five

For those of you at the Crimespree party at this years Bouchercon you know that we gave out the first “Jack Reacher” Award. With the permission of Lee Child we’ll be giving this award out every year. It is an editorial award but we’d like our readers input. Not only must this book be a fast and entertaining read that you’d recommend to anyone BUT you must also believe that the author, while highly successful continues to give back to the mystery community (readers, writers and organizations) in a selfless manner. It’s your chance to suggest someone who deserves an award for being a damn fine writer and being themselves!

Now I know it’s not even the end of October and many of you are still working on the pile but it’s never too early to start.

Would you like to hear what my picks are? To get everyone started I’ll give you a peek ?

Best continuing series….

John Connolly- BLACK ANGEL is the bomb. It’s a book written in a manner that is assuredly Charlie Parker but the prose is poetic and the writer’s voice rings more truly than it has in the past. I was enveloped in this story as I read and had to blink before stepping back into reality. A step like this takes more than just confidence on the part of an author. It takes a gigantic leap of faith.

Elizabeth George- I still can’t believe what this best seller did to her series. Talk about changing character direction. WITH NO ONE AS WITNESS took a huge risk not only in character development but also is a rather cynical look at the serial killer novel, tongue in cheek if you read between the lines.

Val McDermid- Two fold really. While I mention enjoying George’s cynicism above there’s still nobody who does the serial killer novel better than Ms. McDermid. This year’s THE TORMENT OF OTHERS is so deeply layered with police procedural and the evolution of the characters of Tony Hill and Carol Jordan it’s hard to believe Ms. McDermid will ever come to an end of their story. Brain Tumor indeed! And there’s a place in my heart for the trade paperback release of HOSTAGE TO MURDER. Lindsay Gordon has been away a long time but I slipped right back in with her during this fantastical caper with a strong foot in reality. I recommend this book highly.

Reed Farrel Coleman- THE JAMES DEANS is an extremely well written book. Both “Cold Case” and “Ripped from today’s headlines” in nature and with enough twists to keep every mystery reader entertained I cannot help but think that Mr. Coleman also establishes a rapport with a much wider audience in this book than in the previous Moe Pragers. The reason is the case. The simple fact that the “mystery” Prager is asked to solve in this one has little to do with his personal environment allows us a glimpse at what makes Moe tick in a way that may have been missed in his earlier and equally entertaining books. This one maintains one of the best evolving series in mystery while ascertaining that we’re only at the beginning of what this gifted writer has to say .

The last one is always the hardest isn’t it?

But because of British/American release dates and a number of other factors I’m going to stick with a lady I believe to be doing something entirely unique in mystery.

Rochelle Krich- NOW YOU SEE ME is the fourth Moll Blume book. True crime reporter, Orthodox Jew, amateur sleuth, newlywed Molly Blume is a fascinating character. This mystery is well crafted. It allows Krich to explore the horrific possibilities of the internet. Not content to rest there this talented author turns this into a tale of secret pasts and long ago wrongs. Krich reveals a glimpse into the life of the very contemporary Orthodox Jew and a look into the historic past of this religion. With alternating P.O.V.s she keeps the story well paced and it never feels scripted. Krich is everything I hoped Faye Kellerman would become. And she shows no signs of slowing down.

So there’s a glimpse into what Ruth is thinking. Both old a new favorites with enough talent amongst them to topple THE DIVINCI CODE. Well at least until the movie comes out….

You want fav five? I’m not ready to commit yet but there are two books that if you haven’t read them yet, I highly suggest you do before you make your picks- Laura Lippman’s THE POWER OF THE THREE and Walter Mosley’s CINAMMON KISS.

Take care and happy reading


Oct 13, 2005

Be Immortalized In Greg Rucka's New Atticus Kodiak Novel

Atticus Kodiak, Greg Rucka's signature fiction hero is returning in the novel Patriot Acts to be published next year by Bantam. Rucka is offering a major role in the novel to the highest bidder in this week's CBLDF eBay auction. The auction winner will be written into the book, and will receive a signed advance reading copy and hardcover first edition of the novel upon its publication.

Set three years after the events of Critical Space, Patriot Acts introduces us to a changed Atticus, who has transcended the personal security business to find himself in a world of even higher stakes. Rucka explains, "Patriot Acts is the much-anticipated return of Atticus
Kodiak, picking up three years after the events of Critical Space, and finds Atticus blackmailed into performing a 'service for his country' that isn't quite what it appears at first glance."

Rucka says that the auction winner will be an important role in the book. "The winner of the auction will have a major character in the novel named after them -- this isn't a one-page walk-on, walk-off, or an 'I name a corpse after you' gig, but rather a character who will
be critical to the plot and story of the novel. No guarantees if you're a good guy, bad guy, or somewhere in between.

An outspoken advocate for free speech, Rucka has a long history of supporting the CBLDF. He's auctioned off roles in his last two Queen & Country novels to support the Fund, raising nearly $5,000 through those initiatives alone. He has also participated as amicus for the CBLDF in the California Supreme Court case in re: George T, and is a fixture at Fund signings and events throughout the country.

Rucka describes his commitment to the Fund and the ideals it stands for: "Freedom of speech is truly the most precious right we have in this country, as well as one of our most essential and basic rights. All of us have the right to say our piece, and to do so without fear.
The moment someone--anyone--can dictate what we say and cannot say, what stories we can tell, or see, or read, and what stories we cannot, we lose more than our freedom; we lose the promise of our nation. The CBLDF has never backed down in its commitment
to this right. And I sleep a hell of a lot better at night knowing that the Fund is out there, unwavering in its dedication to let us all read what we want to read, and tell the stories we want to tell. An industry without the CBLDF scares me - it should scare us all. I am - and
always have been - very proud to join the Fund."

The auction to win a role in Patriot Acts will go live at 2 PM Eastern Time on Wednesday October 12 and will close on Wednesday
October 19. To bid on this item, please visit
  • Rucka Auction

  • http://search.ebay.com/_W0QQfgtpZ1QQfrppZ25QQsassZcbldf

    Oct 9, 2005

    Crimespree 9 could be a little late

    We are plugging away on issue 9, but due to a couple of things we might ship a little late. It isn't slated to hit the mial till the first week of November, but we are already behind our deadline so I wanted to let people know.

    Factors involved in the issue being late involve a family health issue and a trip to Baltimore on deadline weekend. Plus I got my yearly sinus "thing" early so I've been alternating between waiting for my head to explode and blowing my nose a lot.

    The Max Allan Collins interview is amazing. Sean Chercover did a great job.
    We also have a great Interview from Manuel Ramos with Brian Azzarello, and Steven Torres in turn interviewed Manuel.

    Plus Bouchercon pictures and pool moments. What are poll moments? You'll have to read and find out!

    So please bare with us, issue nine will be as close to on time as we can make it.

    Oct 3, 2005

    5 years, already?

    This weekend Ruth and I will be celebrating 5 years of marriage. This is pretty cool because seven years ago I figured I would be single the rest of my life.

    A brief re-cap of the story:

    Ruth and I met at Bouchercon 1999 in Milwaukee. I'd been sober four years and was at a pretty good place for the first time in a long time in my life. Ruth was also at a point in her life when she was getting over something and starting to really starting to enjoy life again. Neither of us were on the prowl or looking for that special someone. But we met, and in the next few months started dating. We got married exactly a year after we met.

    I can't picture my life with out Ruth in at this point. Almost everything I do she's involved in some way. It's been 5 years of pure joy. It doesn't hurt that she is even more of a mystery fan than I am, and we have vary similar tastes in music and movies. Without her I don't think Crimespree would exist, I probably would never have done Interrogations and statred a second book. And I'm sure I would spend more time at home watching tv instead of going out and doing really great things.

    At times it feels like we've known each other forever, and other times it's like we've just met and are still grinning at each other like goofs.

    Time really does fly when you are having fun.