Review of THE GATES OF JANUS by Ian Brady

THE GATES OF JANUS Ian Brady 2015 Feral House You are reading this review in CrimeSpree Magazine, which means I’m into crime. I find crime fascinating. However, my wheelhouse is Organized Crime. Serial killers were never a thing I found myself drawn to in the past. When it comes to killing, there are things I understand and things I don’t. When I read something like, “Ralphie was shot 2x in the head and was left in the trunk of a car. The boss ordered it because Ralphie was skimming drug profits,” – that I understand. It’s business. When it comes to torture there are things I understand and things I...

J.C. Lane’s TAG YOU’RE DEAD Reviewed

TAG YOU’RE DEAD J.C. Lane Poisoned Pen Press July 5th, 2016 Tag You’re Dead By J.C. Lane, a pen name for Judy Clemens, is a riveting thriller. She takes the playground game and evolves it to fit into today’s technology-oriented society. Readers might relate to this as a darker version of the very popular new game, Pokeman Go. This is a game where the stakes could not be any higher, considering the runners’ lives are at risk. It will play into people’s worst fears since it seems very plausible how someone can be kidnapped and forced to run for their life by some mysterious person in the Internet age. In this story there are three...

Daniel Silva’s THE BLACK WIDOW Reviewed

THE BLACK WIDOW Daniel Silva July 12, 2016 Harper THE BLACK WIDOW by Daniel Silva, besides being an intoxicating thriller, is also a warning for Americans. While reading the book it appears that real life events mesh with fiction. The undercurrent of reality is front and center as evidenced by the author himself who wrote in the forward, “I take no pride in my prescience. I only wish that the murderous, millenarian terrorism of the Islamic State lived solely on the pages of this story.” The plot begins with ISIS detonating a massive bomb in the Marais district of Paris. Gabriel Allon, the Israeli Mossad Agent poised to become the chief of...

Gerry Schmitt’s LITTLE GIRL GONE Reviewed

Little Girl Gone Gerry Schmitt Berkeley Pub July 5th, 2016 Little Girl Gone by Gerry Schmitt is the first book in her new Afton Tangler series. This mystery about a baby kidnapping is not a who-done-it since early on readers know who is the perpetrator. This author is also known as “cozy mystery writer,” Laura Childs, but a warning: there is nothing cozy about this plot. The mystery comes in as people try to figure out along with the protagonists how they are going to solve the case, given the clues the author provides. The reason for her pen name of Childs is that “I owned an advertising agency at the time I started writing. I was fairly...

LAST FAIR DEAL GONE DOWN By Ace Atkins Reviewed

LAST FAIR DEAL GONE DOWN Ace Atkins writer Marco Finnegan artist July 2016 12-Gauge comics I am a fan of Ace Atkins going way back. I’m also a huge fan of comics. When Ace told me that his Nick Travers books were going to be done as graphic novels I got excited. Here is a review I did back in 1998 for CROSSROAD BLUES: “This book sucked me in right from the start. It doesn’t hurt that I’m a sucker for Blues lore and love reading about it. So reading books with a protagonist that is an authority on the blues is to perfect. And Nick Travers is a great character. He’s funny, he’s smart and he’s tough. He’s an ex-pro football player...

Review of DODGERS by Bill Beverly

DODGERS Bill Beverly April 2016 Crown The first allowance-money purchase I can recall was a cassette copy of Run-DMC’s Raising Hell as a second-grader in some certainly long-defunct chain store. I can’t quite explain what led an eight year-old in small-town East Texas to hip-hop. I can just say that it spoke to me in a way little else had. I’m sure I had absolutely no idea what most of it meant, but I loved it. That’s stuck with me throughout my life. Any child that started out on Run-DMC almost certainly graduated, at some point, to three-minute tales of urban crime, whether the Mafioso fantasies of Kool G Rap, the brazen ultraviolence of...