Agatha’s Back: Five Mysteries That Channel the Queen of Crime

Agatha’s Back: Five Mysteries That Channel the Queen of Crime When filmmaker Rian Johnson’s latest movie Knives Out hit theaters in late 2019, it was met with both critical acclaim and box office success. Some called it a “star-studded thriller,” others “a romping delight,” but there was one constant: almost everyone likened the film to the […]

TEN GREAT MYSTERIES SET IN MAINE

TEN GREAT MYSTERIES SET IN MAINE   EMMA IN THE NIGHT by Wendy Walker Wendy Walker gives readers a terrifying, intimate look at true narcissism and a totally dysfunctional family in this twisted psychological thriller set partially on a rugged, nearly-vacant island off the coast of Maine. Two sisters disappear but when, three years later, […]

Writing Serial Killer Thrillers (Part II)

Writing Serial Killer Thrillers (Part II) In Part I of this blog series, thriller writer Rick Reed discussed writing serial killer novels. Why the location and condition of the body are important elements of the story.   In Part II he will explain the various categories of serial killer: Homicide vs Murder vs Mass Murder […]

Road Trips to Die For or Die On…

Road Trips to Die For     There’s something about a road trip that lends itself to murder.   Perhaps it’s because being stuck in a car with your nearest and dearest can turn anyone into a homicidal maniac. Maybe it’s the disconnection of the open road or the claustrophobia of being confined in a […]

Why You Read a Book Twice

Why You Read a Book Twice There’s nothing like cracking the spine of a new book, having no idea what happens next. But we all have favorite books, too. The ones that are falling apart on our shelves. The ones we refuse to give away or lend (no matter how many times we recommend them). […]

A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO POISONING

A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO POISONING   Growing up, I always knew that one day I’d kill someone with poison.   That was partly because I was fascinated by Agatha Christie novels, in which poison often plays a prominent role. Alfred Hitchcock used it to wonderful effect in his films — think of how Ingrid Bergman […]

The Top Twelve Mystery Novels of 2019

The Top Twelve Mystery Novels of 2019 The Whisper Man by Alex North (Celadon Books) We seem to be inundated with domestic suspense novels these days—I guess we have to blame Gone Girl for that (depending on your tastes). In this imaginative departure a crucial question is asked. Have you ever been away from home […]

Top Ten New England Suspense Novels

Top Ten New England Suspense Novels I’m from New England, and something about the combination of landscape—craggy coastlines, blue-blood cities, university towns, and country roads winding into dark forests, and history—witch trials, whaling ships, the first constitution of the United States hidden in the hollow of an oak tree—has always made me wonder (and want […]

Research Fun!

Research Fun! (Are crime writers armchair adventurers or do they take their research so seriously to the point of getting hurt? Bestselling author Allison Brennan shows us that research is not all cocoa and cozy fireplace.) Most authors—especially mystery writers—do a lot of research to make sure they make their stories believable. But no one […]

Ten of the World’s Most Enticing Borders

  Ten of the World’s Most Enticing Borders   Borders have always fascinated me. With just one step, you can cross culture, language, food, politics and much more.  Some are tense. Some are awash with welcome. Sometimes, there’s the swipe of a biometric code. Sometimes, a creaking pole across a dusty road, miles from anywhere. […]

The Mathematics of Mystery

The Mathematics of Mystery Some novelists are all but born knowing they should write.  Some study literature, or creative writing, become experts is the academic form of the art.  Some belong to families of writers and words are their legacy. But not me. I came to writing via the scenic route, completely oblivious to the […]