Monday, November 09, 2015

Pierce’s Picks

A weekly alert for followers of crime, mystery, and thriller fiction.

Crucifixion Creek (Minotaur), is the first book in a trilogy from Scotland-born Australian author Barry Maitland, a Ned Kelly Award winner (for 1996’s The Malcontenta). It introduces a new protagonist, Sydney Detective Sergeant Harry Belltree, who here must confront suburban transgressions aplenty. Bankstown, west of Sydney, has recently seen a woman shot by a meth-addled biker, an elderly couple commit suicide outside their favorite beachside café, and a builder, Greg March, fatally stabbed in a thoroughfare. None of those incidents might have attracted Belltree’s notice, were it not for the fact that March was his brother-in-law, and the man’s passing makes little sense. By the time a journalist approaches the DS with the out-there theory that these crimes are linked to a dodgy businessman and the resurgence of a local biker gang, Belltree is primed to test the hypothesis, especially since it could supply answers to the car “accident” that killed his parents and blinded his wife three years ago. Silence (Head of Zeus UK) is the third installment in Irish novelist Anthony J. Quinn’s series featuring Inspector Celcius Daly (Disappeared, Border Angels). It finds Daly mixed up in the case of Father Aloysius Walsh, who devoted his final years to amassing evidence of an extended homicide spree that, during the 1970s, took place along the bog-and-blackthorn-filled border separating the Republic of Ireland from Daly’s homeland, Northern Ireland. So what provoked Father Walsh to speed through a police blockade and off the road to his death? Why, when Daly arrives at the scene, does he find members of Special Branch having preceded him there? And why is the name of Daly’s mother, who perished three decades ago, on the priest’s map of the border land killings? A U.S. edition of Silence is due out next May from Mysterious Press/Open Road.

Click here to see more of this season’s most-wanted books.

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