Behind the Book: Dana King

I’m from Penns River. Not Penns River by name, but the three small cities that make up the city in my books. Born in one (the hospital has since closed and become an urgent care/testing facility), taken home to another (the apartment has since burned down), and grew up in the third (my parents still live in the house). All three combined cover 16.6 square miles (the rural township that makes up “unincorporated Neshannock County” is another 15.2 with 2,240 people crammed into it.) For comparison purposes, the land area of Manhattan Island is 22.8 square miles. These are not metropolii. The average household income is about three-quarters the...

Behind the Book David E. Grogan

  I have always loved veterans’ stories. My dad was an Air Force fighter pilot in the 1950s, so there was no shortage of military tales to go around. Some of my favorites involved pilot candidates washing out of flight school because they passed out while getting their shots; an Air Force dentist reading instructions out of a manual while another dentist carried out those instructions on my dad’s teeth; and my dad dropping my mother off at the base hospital to deliver me because he had just returned from a training mission (he did come back after a nap). On a more somber note, he told us how his F-89 Scorpion carried nuclear tipped...

MEDDLING KIDS by Edgar Cantero

MEDDLING KIDS Edgar Cantero July 2017 Doubleday Honestly, Cantero had me at “Meddling Kids.” As a child who grew up on Scooby Doo (I used to measure units of time in Scooby Doo episodes, according to my parents.) I was both excited and leery that this book may or may not pay off. I was pleased when it did. The Blyton Summer Detective Club (of Blyton Hills, a small mining town in Oregon’s Zoinx River Valley….get it, you guys? ZOINX?) solves their last case in the summer of 1977, literally unmasking an old man who had been causing trouble. The only thing is, the supernatural things happening couldn’t be explained—and certainly couldn’t have...

2017 Crime Novel of the Year Announced

You can see a video from the awards presentation on our Facebook page. Chris Brookmyre has tonight scooped the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year Award for Black Widow. Celebrating its thirteenth year, the Award is considered one of the most coveted crime writing prizes in the country. Black Widow is a story of cyber-abuse, where ‘even the twists have twists’. It features Brookmyre’s long-time character, reporter Jack Parlabane. Scotland’s first minister, Nicola Sturgeon tweeted that she had been given the novel as an early Valentine’s Day present by her husband, declaring it ‘brilliant’. Brookmyre said: “I’m really quite taken...

Kathy Reichs talks about TWO NIGHTS

Elise Cooper: Where did you get the idea for this story? Kathy Reichs: Sunnie grew out of a story from an earlier book, Death du Jour. It is based on a true cult where seventy-five people were killed. Three of the victims were in Quebec, parents and a baby, who were assassinated. This actually happened and I was present when they came to our lab for autopsy. After thinking about the mentality of cults and why they kill themselves and others I did a lot of research on the psychology. This gave me rise to think, ‘what if someone grew up in the context of a cult where everyone they knew was either killed or killed themselves?’ EC: Why did you...

Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival (Har...

Tomorrow I’ll take a train north from London to the idyllic town of Harrogate in North Yorkshire for the annual festival affectionally known as Harrogate. (The full name, Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival, includes the name of the long-time sponsor, Theakston Brewing Company, and one of their signature beverages, Old Peculier ale.) Like any crime fiction gathering, Harrogate has elements that make each year unique as well as characteristics that keep readers flocking back year after year. Venue Unlike Bouchercon or Left Coast Crime, Harrogate takes place at the Old Swan Hotel each year. In addition to being a gorgeous venue, the...