Delusion by Peter Abrahams (2008)
Nell Jarreau’s geologist fiancé was murdered on a summer night in Louisiana as they were walking. Her eyewitness identification of Alvin Dupree resulted in a life sentence for the killer. Nell married the lead detective on the case; they raised her daughter and led an idyllic life for nearly 20 years until a hurricane struck. During the cleanup, new evidence surfaced that ultimately proved Dupree innocent. He was released from prison and Nell’s world began coming apart.
Nell wonders if she made a mistake. Is this new evidence credible? Who is telling the truth? Is the reporter lying to write a sensational story? The suspense level in this book builds and builds as Nell discovers inconsistencies and possible alternate theories. The man who she believes killed her fiancé is free, her husband is uncommunicative and angry, and her college student daughter, once open and chatty, is now closed and sullen, demanding information about her birth father’s life. The plot thickens, new clues surface, new motivations are uncovered and the twists and turns continue.
Also try While I Was Gone by Sue Miller and Just One Look by Harlan Coben.
Read the Bookreporter.com review and visit the author’s website.
Treasure Hunt by John Lescroart (2010)
Wyatt Hunt’s detective agency is in a slump. Just as he’s considering closing the doors, his only employee Mickey Dade stumbles across the body of Dominic Como, the head of a network of social service agencies with a $50 million budget.
Mickey envisions a scenario where Hunt’s agency would act as a clearinghouse for tips to be filtered to the police, partly to prove the innocence of Alicia Thorpe, the sister of his culinary school friend. As the investigation moves forward, the sinister side of philanthropy produces several motives and suspects, as does the romantic entanglements and resulting jealousies.
Mickey’s sister and grandfather join Dade and Hunt in their search for the killer and each struggles to figure out who they can believe. The police have one theory, Dade has another and Hunt wonders whether other recent events have skewed his ability to trust. The tension thickens as more killings occur and people close to the investigation disappear.
If you enjoy Treasure Hunt, try On this Rockne by Ralph M. McInerny.
Visit the author’s website and read reviews at Amazon.com.
Lethal Legacy by Linda Fairstein (2009)
Set amid the treasures of the New York Public Library, Linda Fairstein gives us a fascinating glimpse into the history of the NYPL including its start as a scholarly research facility that housed rare books, documents, and maps. What I enjoyed, besides the mystery itself, was learning about the curators, cartographers, conservators, special librarians and rare, priceless donations still housed in the building. It was very cool that librarians with their special knowledge, background and expertise were crucial in helping the police solve the mystery.
Go to the author’s website and watch the video tour of the NYPL before you read the book! Read an excerpt from the book and check out Harlan Coben’s review plus others at Amazon.com.
Murder Inside the Beltway by Margaret Truman (2008)
A typical Margaret Truman mystery. I love the way she weaves the local color of Washington, D.C. in the book. It had some interesting twists and turns. Two of the main characters are intriguing blends of current political figures.
Check out other titles in the Capitol Crimes mystery series, and read a review of this book on Amazon.com.
Angel’s Tip by Alafair Burke (2008)
As a huge fan of James Lee Burke, I picked an Alafair Burke (his daughter) book more out of curiosity than anything. She has inherited her dad’s gift for writing. Angel’s Tip is a compelling mystery, with enough twists and turns to make it interesting, but not so many that the plot becomes unlikely. New York detective Ellie Hatcher is an interesting character, struggling with a painful family history and the old boys’ club in the police department. Burke has written a strong woman character, who has grown and developed in just two books. She first appeared in Dead Connection.
Browse the book online and visit the author’s blog.
The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch (2008)
Inspirational in a common sense, real life kind of a way. Though battling terminal cancer, Pausch doesn’t write about dying – he writes about living in a way that stresses the small things we can do to make our lives joyful. Tigger vs. Eeyore. 61 little chapters in 206 little pages – no preaching, no grand “what is the meaning of life” ramblings. I was reluctant to pick this book up and have already recommended it to several people, including my niece who is about to embark on her career as a teacher. Great life lessons for teachers in this book, for parents, for anyone.
Visit The Last Lecture website to find out more about Randy Pausch (who lost his battle with pancreatic cancer on July 25, 2008) and more about the book. You can also watch the lecture that inspired the book, listen to Pausch read an excerpt, and discover online extras.