Mystery fiction is a loosely-defined term that is often used as a synonym of detective fiction — in other words a novel or short story in which a detective (either professional or amateur) solves a crime. The term “mystery fiction” may sometimes be limited to the subset of detective stories in which the emphasis is on the puzzle element and its logical solution (cf. whodunit), as a contrast to hardboiled detective stories which focus on action and gritty realism. However, in more general usage “mystery” may be used to describe any form of crime fiction, even if there is no mystery to be solved. For example, the Mystery Writers of America describes itself as “the premier organization for mystery writers, professionals allied to the crime writing field, aspiring crime writers, and those who are devoted to the genre”.
The world's greatest detective is back in an all-new adventure! When thieves pull off a daring heist that threatens a quaint town in Montana, Virginia Holmes and her partner decide to work "pro bono," taking no pay unless they can solve the case in time to prevent economic ruin. What they find is an elaborately planned theft that baffles them at every turn. And at the center of the mystery is one crucial question ... how does thief steal MILLIONS OF HONEYBEES?!
What I think
Nice story, certainly not full of twists. The style still doesn’t convince me, too many repetitions and a superficial language. Although I learned a lot about bees, I don’t understand what these poor bees did to get stolen. Or rather, I understand the reason given but, bees? really…oh well. I don’t think I will continue with the series. However I have to say that I like Holmes, I feel like I’m reading Hetty from NCIS: Los Angeles when I read her parts.
Inspector Pieter Van In is begrudgingly finishing up a healthy lunch when he hears the news: While restoring their farmhouse, the Vermasts have found a skeleton in the backyard. Van In, who happens to be married to the deputy public prosecutor, is determined to solve the case in double-quick time and squeeze in one last vacation before the birth of his first child.
But this murder is trickier than it looks, and Van In soon finds himself in murky waters. The Vermasts’ land belonged to the most prominent businessman in West Flanders before it was suddenly handed over to a right-wing charity. The heavily endowed foundation appears to have no expenditures or investments. So who’s financing it—and why?
Before he knows it, Van In finds himself in the middle of a complex web—one that involves high-level officials, local law enforcement, and common thugs. The harder he tries to unravel the thread, the more difficult it becomes to uncover the secrets that the charity’s benefactors are trying to hide. This time Van In will have to risk lives to find out the truth.
About the book
A body is found in the garden of a house outside the city. The body looks like a man and has been underground since 1985, or so it seems. Van In finds himself investigating against politicians and men of power who would like to see the case covered up. Obviously he goes on and what he discovers is a truth that has been buried for more than 20 years.
A dead girl lies on a blood-soaked mattress, her limbs spread in a parody of ecstasy. The scene matches a series of murders which ended when irrefutable forensic evidence secured the conviction of one Derek Tyler. But Tyler's been locked up in a mental institution for two years, barely speaking a word except to say that 'the Voice' told him to do it.
Top criminal psychologist Dr Tony Hill is prepared to think the unthinkable - this is not a copycat murder but something much stranger. While DCI Carol Jordan and her team mount a desperate and dangerous undercover police operation to trap the murderer, Hill heads towards a terrifying face-off with one of the most perverse killers he has ever encountered..
About the book
After the third volume of this series, Carol Jordan took a break, but Tony Hill knows she must get back to work to overcome the trauma of the previous case. Meanwhile, a new serial killer roams the streets of Bradfield and is killing prostitutes. What’s special? That this case was solved two years ago without a doubt and the killer is locked up in the psychiatric hospital where Tony has been working part-time for some time. Meanwhile, a missing child has not yet been found.
Cookies and corpses, not the picture-perfect Christmas Chris and Alicia Mallory had planned.
Recipe for a Christmas Murder:
Take one gingerbread competition, one mayor looking for publicity, one egocentric celebrity chef and a killer with an axe to grind. Mix thoroughly for the perfect Christmas murder.
Well, almost perfect.
It’s one month until Christmas in Dunbarton and the town is buzzing with the news that a famous celebrity chef is coming to judge and televise the gingerbread competition at the new community centre. Confident that the event will attract hordes of food-loving visitors to town, the mayor has Dunbarton decked out in all its Christmas finery and directs Alicia and the deputy mayor to make sure everything runs smoothly.
All is going as planned until a body is found in the life-sized gingerbread house outside the community centre, with a gingerbread dove stuffed in the victim’s mouth. The distraught mayor once again calls on Alicia and Chris to solve the murder before it sounds a death-knell to the holiday festivities.
It’s not long before Alicia and Chris discover that it’s not all sugar and spice in the world of big-time baking and that one too many cookies can be the death of you.
What I think
Last book of the year and last book for the Cloak and Dagger challenge.
I can’t give more than 3 stars even if I liked it better than the first book. Too simple to give Alicia the ‘oh it was him’ idea and leave it there. This particular one didn’t make me give more stars.
I know they’re not cops, but I found the case underdeveloped. It’s also too simple to have Alicia come to the solution (complete with a light bulb) and go “oh the killer was….” without saying how she found out. I understand how she found the murder weapon, but from there to say who the killer is (without saying why you think such a thing) is preposterous. Anyone could take it (the weapon) to kill.
I like Alicia and Chris as characters, maybe I’ll start reading the series and not just the Christmas ones, but I already have too many series to finish, so I don’t know.
There was more Christmas in this book and I enjoyed it more. But nothing exceptional, obviously I recommend it, but read it at Christmas time.
With a missing reindeer, a murdered elf, and a mayor one Christmas Carol short of a breakdown, it looks like Christmas festivities in Dunbarton are in danger of being cancelled - especially since Santa is in jail, charged with murder!
It's coming up to Christmas and everyone in Dunbarton is filled with excitement at the arrival of a reindeer, a gift from their twin town in Norway. But when Dasher disappears, children and parents alike are devastated, and the mayor fears an international incident.
In desperation, the mayor turns to the Mallorys to save the town's Christmas, but the more Chris and Alicia investigate, the more they realize it isn't just Christmas that's in jeopardy.
What I think
The story is pleasant, I was hoping for more Christmas atmosphere but apart from saying that the fair starts in a certain number of days and the lights put up by Chris around his house, I haven’t felt it that much. Be that as it may, I never thought that the killer was that person.
The book has some grammatical and spelling errors but since it is a “free” book it can be overlooked.
I haven’t read the previous books because I honestly wanted to read the Christmas book after this one and since I read the books in order of publication, I had to read this one first, but I didn’t want to read the books before this one because there are too many and I wanted Christmas. Maybe I’ll pick up the series later.
All my book reviews are and will be 100% honest. I don’t get paid to write them and I don’t get “gifts” to write a good review so what I write is what I think. If I love a book, I’m going to say that, if I don’t like a book, I will write why I don’t. My critics aren’t an attack to the author, they are just how I feel about a subject or a style. See more in my Review Policy.