Crime, mystery, thriller

#861 Anatomy of a bestseller

A Match Made for Murder: A Lane Winslow Mystery by Iona Whishaw Victoria: TouchWood Editions, 2020 $16.95 / 9781771513265 Reviewed by Jennifer Chutter * Reading Iona Whishaw’s A Match Made for Murder, Book 7 in her Lane Winslow series, was like being invited to a party where the host had promised me I would have…
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#818 Shoulder pads and red lipstick

The War Widow by Tara Moss Toronto: HarperCollins, 2020 $34.00 / 9781443461207 Reviewed by Valerie Green * Tara Moss has created another excellent piece of crime fiction with The War Widow. The style of this book, although perhaps a little far-fetched in places, is reminiscent of old movies set in the 1940s like Casablanca, starring…
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#812 Vancouver junkie hunter, 1983

Horseplay: My Time Undercover on the Granville Strip by Norm Boucher Edmonton: NeWest Press, 2020 $21.95 / 9781988732985 Note: this book will not be available until November 15, 2020. Order it in advance at your local bookstore. Reviewed by Ron Verzuh  * We’re on the toughest section of Granville Street in downtown Vancouver. The hookers…
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#806 The Empire strikes back

Perseverance: The Life of William Fernie, the Man Who Caught Billy Miner by Ron Hatch Kamloops: Thompson Rivers History and Historical Society, 2019 $24.95 / 9780991689910 Available by email from, from Kamloops Chapters, and from Reviewed by Wayne Norton * Bill Miner attracts a remarkable amount of interest from students of Kamloops history….
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#734 Destination Danish colony

San Josef by Harold Macy New Westminster: Tidewater Press, 2019 $20.00 / 9781775165989 Reviewed by Valerie Green * Although I have lived on Vancouver Island for over forty years, I have never travelled farther north than Port Hardy. All I knew of San Josef and Cape Scott at the northern tip of the island was…
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#726 Beware the Shakespeare seminar

Jacintha by Lorraine Davies Toronto: Dundurn, 2019 $21.99 /  9781459744554 Reviewed by Moira Laidlaw with Ginny Ratsoy * Lorraine Davies’ Jacintha is a novel of secrets, mistakes, and forgiveness. It tells the story of Richard Wilson, a professor of English Literature at the University of British Columbia. After a traumatic landslide destroys his house and…
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#705 Batten down the hatches

Arrow’s Fall by Joel Scott Toronto: ECW Press, 2019 $18.99 / 9781770414273 Reviewed by John Hutchings * This is the second book by Chemainus-based sailor and author Joel Scott, featuring the further adventures of his principal two characters and their old wooden boat, the Arrow. Having not read the first book, I can attest that…
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#694 My name is Lane Winslow

A Deceptive Devotion: A Lane Winslow Mystery by Iona Whishaw Victoria: Touchwood Editions, 2019 $16.95 / 9781771513005 Reviewed by Kim Naqvi * “He doesn’t seem like the romantic type. I mean, he’s kind of old.” “The world is full of mysteries, Constable.” Clever dialogue, and an ear for human flight and fumbles, places Iona Whishaw’s…
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#645 The journeys of Eizo Osada

The Return of the Shadow by Kunio Yamagishi London: Austin Macauley, 2018 £6.16 (U.K) $25.95 (Cdn) / 9781786937155  /  Please order from your local bookstore or through Book Depository who offer free worldwide shipping. Reviewed by Patricia E. Roy * In July 2019, The Return of the Shadow, by Comox Valley writer Kunio Yamagishi, was shortlisted…
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#620 Vancouver beyond the postcards

Vancouver Noir by Sam Wiebe (editor) Brooklyn, NY: Akashic Books, 2018 $23.95 / 9781617756597 Reviewed by Paul Falardeau * Vancouver is a beautiful city, one you might expect is a good place to find some world-class, city-adjacent hikes, the best smoked salmon, and some of the finest sinsemilla you could ever hope to smoke. It’s…
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#509 Let sleeping dogs stir

No Dog Barked: Who Killed the MacLauchlans? by Rod Drown and Ken McIntosh New Westminster: Archives New West, 2018 $30.00 / 9781775095217 Reviewed by Don Hauka * In the early hours of March 21, 1966, Dr. Henry MacLauchlan and his wife Margaret Ann were murdered in their tiny bungalow at 912 Fifth Street in New…
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#494 Mycology, MDA, and Hells Angels

85 Grams: Art Williams, Drug Czar by Daryl Ashby Victoria: Tellwell Talent, 2018 $19.95 / 9781773703503 Reviewed by Kathryn Neilson * During the 1970s, Arthur James Williams ran the largest MDA lab in North America near the small town of Ladysmith on Vancouver Island. With assistance from trusted confidants, he produced and distributed millions of…
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#415 Murder by Milkshake

Murder by Milkshake: An Astonishing True Story of Adultery, Arsenic, and a Charismatic Killer by Eve Lazarus Vancouver: Arsenal Pulp Press, 2018 $21.95 / 9781551527468 Reviewed by Larry Hannant First published November 6, 2018 * True crime “may be the dominant genre of our time,” according to Globe and Mail media writer Simon Houpt. And…
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