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Hooked on Murder: Bradley and Benison

Tuesday, Jan 21, 2014 at 3:13pm

Two Canadian crime writers with Prairie roots mine the gold of unsettling events that take place amid the supposedly placid environs of the traditional English village...


The English village of Bishop's Lacey is never short of two things: mysteries to solve and pre-adolescent detectives to solve them. The Dead in Their Vaulted Arches is the latest novel this bestselling series of cozy mysteries by one-time Saskatoon resident, Alan Bradley. Once again the young chemist and aspiring detective, Flavia de Luce, is on the case. This time Flavia brings her knowledge of poisons and her indefatigable spirit to solve one of the most dastardly crimes the English countryside has to offer, and in the process she comes closer than ever to solving her life's greatest mystery: her mother's disappearance.


Writing in the great whodunit tradition of British mysteries, Winnipeg's C.C. Benison takes us to new heights in Ten Lords A-Leaping, the third novel in his Father Christmas series. To fundraise for the parish in bucolic Thornford Regis, Father Tom Christmas skydives for charity. While his landing is bumpy, it's nothing compared to that of Hector, Earl of Fairhaven, who leaps from twenty thousand feet with disastrous results. Some residents of the town believe that those results were not accidental, and soon Tom Christmas is investigating a crime that puts him on course for a very hard landing of his own.


This article was taken from the January/February edition of our news magazine, The Bookseller. Pick up your own free copy of the magazine inside of our stores.

Categories: Mystery & Crime, Saskatoon, Winnipeg, New Releases

2014 Edgar Nominees

Friday, Jan 17, 2014 at 5:43pm

The nominees of this year's Edgar Awards, which are presented by the Mystery Writers of America and are "widely acknowledged to be the most prestigious awards in the genre", were recently announced.

You can find a complete listing of the nominees on the Edgar Awards website.

If you're interested in any of the titles on any of the lists, contact your nearest McNally Robinson bookstore by phone or email.


Categories: Awards, Mystery & Crime, Saskatoon, Winnipeg

Those Mysterious Canadians...

Thursday, Sep 05, 2013 at 4:13pm


Joanne Kilbourn is as feisty as ever in The Gifted, the 14th book of the series by Regina's Gail Bowen. This time, Jo and Zack's young daughter Taylor's precocious talent as a painter has drawn the attention of people who may not be at all what they seem.



When a disgraced college lecturer who had been living a poverty-stricken existence is found murdered with £5,000 in his pocket, DCI Banks' suspicions turn to the victims former colleagues in Children of the Revolution by Toronto writer Peter Robinson.



Kathy Reichs, a forensic anthropologist for Quebec's Laboratoire de sciences judiciaires et de médecine légale, returns with Bones of the Lost, featuring forensic anthropologist Tempe Brennan. Tempe's examination of a mysterious hit-and-run victim triggers an investigation into human trafficking.

All three of these titles are out now in hardcover.


Can't get enough of crime and mystery? Perhaps these upcoming programs in our Community Classroom can sate your appetite:

> Murder Dissected: The Role of the Coroner in Suspicious Death Investigations with instructor Dr. Peter Markesteyn
> Getting Away With Murder: A Short Course in Mystery Writing with instructor Janice MacDonald
> Crime and Criminals with instructor Roland Penner

Categories: Mystery & Crime, Saskatoon, Winnipeg, New Releases

May Author of the Month: Philip Kerr

Tuesday, Apr 23, 2013 at 5:02pm

England's Philip Kerr enjoyed a stellar literary debut. March Violets, the first of his Bernie Gunther novels, appeared in 1989 to wide critical appreciation. By the time the third novel in the series was published two years later, Kerr's reputation was established. Not wanting to be typecast, he turned to writing standalone thrillers and children's books that disappointed some of his readers. But even Kerr could not deny Bernie Gunther, and he returned with his dogged German sleuth in The One From the Other in 2006.

In Kerr's new book, A Man Without Breath, Bernie has a new job at the German War Crimes Bureau in Berlin. The year is 1943. A month has passed since the stunning defeat at Stalingrad, but unsettling reports are circulating of a mass grave in a forest near Smolensk. Polish officers killed by the Russians? This would give the Nazi regime an unexpected propaganda victory over the Russians. Bernie is dispatched to gather evidence. Once there, however, he discovers a cunning killer is hiding behind the carnage, someone Bernie must put a face to before the killer puts an end to Bernie.

Categories: Mystery & Crime, Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Author of the Month

Canadian Mystery Writers Buck the Sophomore Jinx

Wednesday, Jan 16, 2013 at 5:51pm

Peggy Blair
So much of what has happened around Blair's first novel, The Beggar's Opera, involved sheer luck. And timing. And perhaps a little persistence. After her manuscript was turned down repeatedly by agents, she entered it in several international competitions. The least likely was also the most prestigious: the Debut Dagger Award of the UK Crime Writers Association. To her surprise and delight she made the shortlist. Three weeks after a chance meeting with Ian Rankin at the awards ceremony, The Beggar's Opera was a hot title at the Frankfurt Book Fair. Germany made an offer, followed by Holland, then Norway. And then Penguin Canada purchased the world English language rights and offered a two-book deal. The Beggar's Opera, featuring Inspector Ramirez, head of the Havana Major Crimes Unit and a man haunted by the victims of his unsolved cases, came out last February to rave reviews and steadily climbed up the bestseller lists.

In the gripping sequel, The Poisoned Pawn, Ramirez is in Ottawa to take custody of a suspected pedophile. The routine assignment turns deadly when women suddenly start dying in Havana. Stranded in Canada's capital, he focuses on untangling a web of deceit and depravity that extends all the way from the corridors of power in Ottawa to the Vatican.

G.B. Joyce
Fans of Joyce's first Brad Shade mystery The Code can look forward to the return of the savvy hockey scout turned private eye in The Black Ace, due out in early March. Brad Shade has been just about everywhere hockey is played. He has ridden the buses in the minors, shared dressing rooms with the legends of the game, closed bars with guys destined for the Hall of Fame, and dropped the gloves with journeymen who, like himself, will never get near it. And even though he's retired after fourteen years of bouncing around the league, he's still living out of a suitcase and still taking numbers. Thanks to Shade's work at the NHL draft last season, he gets to hold on to his job as scout for L.A. - at least for now, and Shade is checking out the talent in Regina with his old friend and teammate "Chief". But when they learn of the suicide of a teammate from their playing days in L.A., they discover there's a dark side of Regina, where people have secrets they intend to keep at any cost.

G.B. Joyce is the author of six books of sports non-fiction, most recently The Devil and Bobby Hull. He has worked for ESPN since 2003 and before that was a sports columnist at The Globe and Mail.

Categories: Authors, Mystery & Crime, Saskatoon, Winnipeg
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