Summer is my favourite season of the year and although it has not yet arrived in Halifax, summer reading lists abound. Everyone it seems has suggestions for what to read this summer and I am joining in with my list of mysteries.
Smokin’ Seventeen by Janet Evanovich . This is the latest instalment in the popular Stephanie Plum series that began with One for the Dough. Evanovich’s strength and popularity lies with her cast of insane, funny, and over the top characters and the bizarre situations that are her specialty. Throw in a couple of hot men Stephanie can’t make up her mind about and you have laugh out loud situations that kick summer off on a light note.
For those like me who love Evanovich’s funny style but have read everything in her repertoire, try Laura Levine’s Jaine Austen mystery series. Levine also relies on funny characters and situations to fill in gaps between clues. Her latest Pampered to Death is due out this summer.
On a cozy note, award-winning author Louise Penny has another in her popular Armand Gamache detective series due out this summer. Most of her stories have taken place in the highly dangerous village of Three Pines in Quebec’s eastern townships but her last book Bury Your Dead took readers into Quebec City to delve into one of Quebec’s oldest and most historic mysteries (think Samuel de Champlain) and also back to Three Pines to revisit a crime from a previous book. Her latest release this summer is A Trick of the Light and takes her many fans back to Three Pines for yet another crime.
On a darker note Kathy Reichs has another installment in her Dr. Temperance Brennan series. These books are the basis for the popular TV series Bones so if you haven’t read the books yet you can plunge in with her latest Flash and Bones or go back to the beginning with Deja Dead. For anyone who has visited and fallen in love with Montreal then this series is for you as the books take place both in Montreal and in North Carolina.
I also enjoy a good thriller and as far as I’m concerned Canadian Linwood Barclay is as good as the best and gives me thrills and chills with every read. His latest due out this summer is The Accident, which like all his previous titles is a stand-alone so it’s safe to plunge into any of the titles and not miss a thing.
For another Canadian thrill check out Chevy Stevens’s second novel Never Knowing. The therapist Nadine, who also appears in Still Missing (Stevens’ first novel), returns to help unravel the mystery behind an adopted child and the birth parents who gave her up.
Rounding out my list is the latest by Robert Rotenberg, The Guilty Plea. Heather Reisman, Chapters-Indigo’s CEO describes him as Canada’s answer to James Patterson. Whether that is a good or bad thing, Rotenberg’s work is well worth checking out. This summer title is the sequel to Old City Hall that takes place in my favourite Canadian city, Toronto. The adventures of Ofiicer Kennicott and Detective Ari Green are well worth checking out, no matter what you think of Toronto.
If you need any more ideas for the summer check out The Next Chapter with Shelagh Rogers on CBC.ca for the summer edition of the popular mystery panel.