An Elderly Lady is Up to No Good by Helene Tursten

Five connected stories.

Maud is an irascible 88-year-old Swedish woman with no family, no friends, and… no qualms about a little murder.

… funny, irreverent story collection by Helene Tursten …

Ever since her darling father’s untimely death when she was only eighteen, Maud has lived in the family’s spacious apartment in downtown Gothenburg rent-free, thanks to a minor clause in a hastily negotiated contract. …

Now in her late eighties, Maud contents herself with traveling the world and surfing the net from the comfort of her father’s ancient armchair. It’s a solitary existence, and she likes it that way.


The Perfect Assassin by Patterson & Sitts

James Patterson partnered with Brian Sitts to reboot the Doc Savage stories from the 1930s and 1940s.

In the NEW book (2022) — Dr. Brandt Savage, a professor of anthropology is kidnapped off the street by the enigmatic Meed and is schooled in the fine art of assassination

In fact, Meed makes him something of a superman. Physically and mentally transformed.

But why?

Brandt is the great-grandson of the original Doc Savage. He has the right genetics to do what Meed needs him to do.

YES. It’s dumb. The plot makes no sense. Like the original pulp fiction, perhaps.

Last Rituals by Yrsa Sigurðardóttir

I’ll bet you can’t pronounce Yrsa Sigurðardóttir. 😀

Yrsa, born 1963, is an Icelandic author.

Last Rituals (2005) is the first book in her Thóra Gudmundsdóttir series.

Good, not great, is my review.

The premise is interesting:

At a university in Reykjavík, the body of a young German student is discovered, his eyes cut out and strange symbols carved into his chest.

Police waste no time in making an arrest, but the victim’s family isn’t convinced that the right man is in custody.

They ask Thóra Gudmundsdóttir, an attorney and single mother of two, to investigate.It isn’t long before Thóra and her associate, Matthew Reich, uncover the deceased student’s obsession with Iceland’s grisly history of torture, execution, and witch hunts.

But there are very contemporary horrors hidden in the long, cold shadow of dark traditions. And for two suddenly endangered investigators, nothing is quite what it seems . . . and no one can be trusted.


Under the Wave at Waimea by Paul Theroux

Paul Theroux is a jerk. But the most skillful writer I can name.

And he’s had a house in Hawaii for over 30 years.

Under the Wave at Waimea is his 2021 novel. Good insight into surf culture.

Professional Hawaiian surfer Joe Sharkey, the protagonist of Paul Theroux’s superb new novel, “Under the Wave at Waimea,” is in trouble — even before he accidentally kills a bicyclist on a dark, rain-drenched road on Oahu’s North Shore.
Old-timers recognize and are thrilled to meet “the Shark,” as he’s nicknamed.
But to the younger surfing crowd, 62-year-old Joe is “just another leathery geezer in flip-flops.”
In short, he’s feeling old.
“When did it happen?” he wonders. “It wasn’t sudden — no illness, no failure; it had stolen upon him.” …

An aging surfer comes to terms with mortality in Paul Theroux’s superb ‘Under the Wave at Waimea’

The Shark starts to fall apart after the accident. His  38-year-old girlfriend has him tested, but it doesn’t seem to be related to Alzheimer’s.

Joe starts telling the same old stories. Over and over again. I did enjoy the ones about Hunter S Thompson in Hawaii. 😀

Theroux is in his 80’s now. I’m thinking aging is much on his mind.

There’s a flashback to Joe’s school days. How he became a surfer. Hawaiian kids at Joe’s school did not appreciate the Haole. White man.

It could be adapted for television.

Every City is Every Other City by John McFetridge

I’d never heard of John McFetridge before reading his entertaining 2021 book …

Every City is Every Other City

He’s about my age and has been publishing since 2003.

He writes Canadian crime fiction unapologetically. The setting of this book is Toronto. Canuck pop culture references are continual.

My first highlight is that Gord Stewart, 40 years old, single, living with his widowed father is almost an anti-hero. More a loser than super sleuth. That’s original.

He’s been working in the movie business as a location scout for years, and when there isn’t much filming, as a private eye for a security company run by ex-cops, OBC.

When a fellow crew member asks him to find her missing uncle, Gord reluctantly takes the job. The police say the uncle walked into some dense woods in Northern Ontario and shot himself, but the man’s wife thinks he’s still alive.

With the help of his movie business and OBC connections, Gord finds a little evidence that the uncle may be alive.

Now Gord has two problems: what to do when he finds a man who doesn’t want to be found, and admitting that he’s getting invested in this job.

For the first time in his life, Gord Stewart is going to have to leave the sidelines and get into the game. Even if it might get him killed.

STFU by Dan Lyons

Dan Lyons was a senior editor at Forbes magazine.

I knew him from the days he was anonymously “Fake Steve Jobs” online. Hilarious.

His new book is STFU: The Power of Keeping Your Mouth Shut in an Endlessly Noisy World.

New York Times bestselling author Dan Lyons is here to tell you – and don’t take this the wrong way – that you really need to shut the f*ck up!

Our noisy world has trained us to think that those who get in the last word win, when in fact it’s those who know how to stay silent who really hold the power. 

… Lyons combines leading behavioral science with actionable advice on how to communicate with intent, think critically, and open your mind and ears to the world around you.

Talk less, get more. That’s what STFU is all about.

Prescriptive, informative, and addictively readable, STFU gives you the tools to become your better self, whether that’s in the office, at home, online, or in your most treasured relationships.

So take a deep breath, turn the page, and quietly change your life.

Research shows that — in groups — men talk more than women, and interrupt more than women.

He named some skillful listeners: Tim Cook, Richard Branson, Barack Obama.

The opposite would be Trump, who doesn’t listen to a word anyone else says.

I’m going to try to be more disciplined in future. Sit still. and LISTEN.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

The Scholar by Dervla McTiernan

Book #2 in the Detective Cormac Reilly series by Irish lawyer, Dervla McTiernan.

I found the story line cleaner and easier to follow than in Book #1 – The Ruin.

When Dr Emma Sweeney stumbles across the victim of a hit and run outside Galway University late one evening, she calls her partner, Detective Cormac Reilly, bringing him first to the scene of a murder that would otherwise never have been assigned to him.

A security card in the dead woman’s pocket identifies her as Carline Darcy, a gifted student and heir apparent to Irish pharmaceutical giant Darcy Therapeutics.

The multi-billion-dollar company, founded by her grandfather, has a finger in every pie, from sponsoring university research facilities to funding political parties to philanthropy – it has funded Emma’s own ground-breaking research.

The enquiry into Carline’s death promises to be high profile and high pressure.

As Cormac investigates, evidence mounts that the death is linked to a Darcy laboratory and, increasingly, to Emma herself. Cormac is sure she couldn’t be involved, but as his running of the case comes under scrutiny from the department and his colleagues, he is forced to question his own objectivity.

Could his loyalty to Emma have led him to overlook evidence? Has it made him a liability?

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

The Midnight Lock by Jeffery Deaver

The 2021 Lincoln Rhyme book is excellent, as are they all. It’s the most recent, as I post.

Another roller coaster of a plot with multiple surprise endings.

A woman awakes in the morning to find that someone has picked her apartment’s apparently impregnable door lock and, terrifyingly, rearranged personal items, even sitting beside her while she slept.

The intrusion, the police learn, is a message to the entire city of carnage and death to come.

Lincoln Rhyme and Amelia Sachs are brought in to investigate and soon learn that the brilliant, sociopathic intruder, who calls himself “The Locksmith,” can break through any lock or security system ever devised. …

The Locksmith is a terrific bad guy. AND there is a second villain in this book — an extreme charismatic blogger who’s somehow connected.

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

My Brother’s Connecticut Gumshoe Series

Randy McCharles has a Masters in Computer Science. Spent most of his career in research and development.

One day he quit a good job to see how he liked being a full-time author.

Unsurprisingly, the pay is not nearly as good. 😀

One of his series has a former cop, current private eye — Sam Sparrow — mysteriously transported back to fictional historic United Kingdom.

His 2022 book is A Connecticut Gumshoe in the Cavern of the Weird Sisters.

Yep. Sam is taken back to time to the days of Shakespeare’s “Scottish Play” and General Macbeth’s machinations to become King of Scotland.

With scheming witches on one side and an old friend in peril on the other, Sam finds himself in the unenviable position of having to help Macbeth succeed. That is, if he ever wants to return home.

Worst of all, he hasn’t the first clue of how to manage a nightclub.

I enjoyed this one the most of the three, so far. The books are funny.

Persons of Interest by Peter Grainger

Grainger self-publishes. Kindle and Audio only, as I post.

I highly recommend the DC Smith Investigation Series;

  • Book 1: An Accidental Death: A DC Smith Investigation
  • Book 2: But for the Grace: A DC Smith Investigation
  • Book 3: Luck and Judgement: A DC Smith Investigation
  • Book 4: Persons of Interest: A DC Smith Investigation
  • Book 5: In This Bright Future: A DC Smith Investigation
  • Book 6: The Rags of Time: A DC Smith Investigation

Those are the first six of 10 up to 2023. Grainger recommends you read them in series as the characters evolve. Smith keeps trying to retire.

DC Smith is one of my favourite characters in fiction. Super competent. Very funny. Dry British humour.

These are police procedurals with no profanity, sex, nor much violence.

In the peace and tranquillity of the woods at Pinehills on a Saturday afternoon, a mobile phone begins to ring. The phone belongs to DC Smith and it isn’t unusual that the call is from Kings Lake Central police station; what is unusual is the fact that he seems to be the subject of an investigation rather than taking part in one.

What can the links be between a prisoner’s violent death in another county, the disappearance of two teenagers and the highest profile case in Kings Lake for many years?

As Smith and his team begin to untangle the threads, one thing becomes clear – they are dealing with some of the most dangerous people that they have yet encountered.