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Showing posts from May, 2010


CIA Agent Milo Weaver is one hot mess at the beginning of Olen Steinhauer'sTHE TOURIST. Strung out on a variety of chemical enhancements, Milo is protecting a low level government functionary when everything well and truly falls apart. We spring forward a handful of years where Milo has woman in his life and a young daughter to care for. He has extracted himself from the deepest part of his despair with their help, but like the all the best Crime Fiction the past is a door to your future problems.
Of course, Milo is dragged back down into the shadowy world when an assassin, Milo's rival, turns up inauspiciously in a small town jail. There he weaves a tale of deceit and betrayal at the very heart of the CIA. Concurrently, Milo's boss tells him that a colleague is leaking information to the Chinese. These two events combine to reveal to Milo what a pawn he has been all along.
I mentioned in a previous post that I thought THE TOURIST was a 4/5th masterpiece. But writing this …


It feels like cheating that Daniel Waddell uses a charming and good looking male protagonist as his lead character. Genealogy never smacks of exciting young men, like Nick Barnes, combing through death notices while simultaneously avoiding being killed. Genealogy is rather left to that frumpish unmarried 60 year old Aunt who has long since mastered the 4-star Sudoku puzzle. But, it is easy to forgive Mr. Waddell in his effort to invigorate a profession that one can not help feel is one step above scrapbooking.

THE BLOOD DETECTIVE succeeds in large part because of its satisfying combination of Police procedural, and historical Crime Novel. I'll admit my weakness to both subsets of the genre. Each here is balanced well, in support of and against the other, to provide a richly detailed work. Mr. Waddell's pace is easy and intuitive. His characters, especially his main creations Nick, Chief Inspector Grant Foster, and Detective Superintendent Heather Jenkins are realistic multidim…

Agatha Award Winners - 2010!

Don't let the date stamp on this post fool you. I am publishing this well after these awards have been given out. However, I posted the nominations for this year's Agatha's, so posting the winners is a just to complete the circle. I have back date the post for reasons of laziness and perceived timeliness.
The Hungry Detective extends their congratulations to winners and nominees alike.
Best Novel
A BRUTAL TELLING - Louise Penny - Minotaur Books

Best First Novel
THE SWEETNESS AT THE BOTTOM OF THE PIE - Alan Bradley - Delacorte Press

Best Non-Fiction
DAME AGATHA'S SHORT - Elena Santangelo - Bella Rosa Books

Best Short Story
"ON THE HOUSE" - Hank Phillippi Ryan, Quarry - Level Best Books

Best Children's/Young Adult
THE HANGING HILL - Chris Grabenstein - Random House