Megan Abbott: Beware the Woman

The Gothic is one of those adjacent genres that fed into the mystery torrent but still manages a fairly strong stream of its own. Many mistresses of mystery like Mignon Eberhardt and Daphne du Maurier mixed updated elements of the Gothic into their most notable books. An equally notable modern talent, Megan Abbott is nothing if not an aficionado of genre, but her take in her excellent new effort Beware the Woman is not just imitation, but an update and critique of these female centered but male dominated stories. read more

Elly Griffiths: The Stranger Diaries

This is a banner week for us as we add two new reviewers!  The second is our daughter Margaret. who unsurprisingly is a big mystery fan, and one of her favorites is Elly Griffiths.  Welcome, Margaret!

Elly Griffiths, author of two mystery series, takes a stab at stand alone fiction with The Stranger Diaries. This novel brings us a modern-day gothic horror story while keeping solidly grounded in tradition. Instead of a castle or drafty mansion, there is an old school with secrets. Instead of a threatening lord of the manor, characters are menaced by fellow teachers and students. There is a ghost story in the background of the novel, and a mystery concerning the true identity of someone long dead. Delightfully, the novel’s three heroines are not quite so traditional. read more