Wednesday, August 31, 2016

McIlvanney Prize Shortlist: Scottish Crime Book of the Year

The organizers of this year’s Bloody Scotland International Crime Writing Festival have revealed the four finalists for the 2016 McIlvanney Prize Scottish Crime Novel of the Year Award, named after the late novelist William McIlvanney.

Black Widow, by Chris Brookmyre (Little, Brown)
The Jump, by Doug Johnstone (Faber)
Splinter the Silence, by Val McDermid (Little, Brown)
Beloved Poison, by E.S. Thomson (Little, Brown)

The winner will be announced at the opening reception at Bloody Scotland (September 9-11) in Stirling, Scotland.

HT: TheRapSheet

Library Wars of the Ancient World

You think you've got problems with your book collection? Read this fascinating article by Lauren Young-- The Fierce, Forgotten Library Wars of the Ancient World:

In the Hellenistic Era—that's 323 BC to 31 BC, for all you numbers fans—the Library of Alexandria, Egypt was a research hub of high prestige. But while certainly the largest of its time and the most famous, the Library of Alexandria wasn’t the only institution of its kind. Libraries throughout the ancient world competed to be the best Greek library, in rivalries that proved as dangerous and unscrupulous as actual wars.

Perhaps the most vicious rivalry of all was between the libraries of Alexandria and Pergamum in the city of Pergamon—present-day Bergama, Turkey. In this conflict, the ego-driven kings of both cities enforced various sneaky maneuvers to stunt the growth of the opposing collections.

“The library was a means [for the kings] to show off their wealth, their power, and mostly to show that they were the rightful heirs of Alexander the Great,” says Gaëlle Coqueugniot, an ancient history research associate at the University of Exeter.


Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Library Poster of the Day

Mystery Readers Journal: Changes in 2016 Themes

Changes in 2016 Mystery Readers Journal Themes

The response to the Mystery Readers Journal: Small Town Cops -- Call for Articles was overwhelming. We had so many essays, articles, and reviews that Kate Derie and I decided to split this theme issue into two issues.

So 2016 (Volume 32) themes are New York City Mysteries I, New York City Mysteries II; Small Town Cops I; Small Town Cops II. Themes in 2017: Midwest Mysteries; Murder in Wartime; and more to come. Possible 2017 themes: Big City Cops which will probably be two issues. Small Town Cops I (Volume 32:3) will be out in October.

Call for Articles:

Still time to write an author essay for Mystery Readers Journal: Small Town Cops II. Send by October 15 to

If you have a mystery set in the Midwest or a Mystery set during Wartime, consider writing an author essay. 500-1500 words, first person, upclose and personal about yourself, your books, and the 'theme' connection. Add titles and 2-3 sentence bio/tagline. Reviews and articles welcome. Send to:

Subscribe to Mystery Readers Journal
Back issues available as PDF downloads or Hardcopy

Monday, August 29, 2016

Cartoon of the Day: Interrogation

Gene Wilder: R.I.P.

Such sad news. Gene Wilder, one of my heroes, passed away  at the age of 83. Mel Brooks, who directed Gene Wilder in some of his most iconic movie roles, mourned the actor's death today on Twitter. "Gene Wilder--One of the truly great talents of our time," Brooks wrote. "He blessed every film we did with his magic & he blessed me with his friendship." Wilder passed away after complications from Alzheimer's disease. Brooks and Wilder were nominated for an Academy Award for Young Frankenstein. For mystery fans, he'll definitely be remembered for The Adventure of Sherlock Holmes' Smarter Brother with Madeline Kahn and Marty Feldman.

This fabulous comedian starred in such gems as The Producers, Blazing Saddles, Young Frankenstein, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, as well as several 'buddy' films with Richard Pryor. In addition to starring in several films, he also directed several, including The Woman in Red and Haunted Honeymoon with his then-wife the late Gilda Radner. He worked in television in the 60s and 70s, as well as later guest appearances on TV shows, and won an Emmy for a guest role on Will & Grace (2003). He also wrote and starred in the A&E mysteries The Lady in Question and Murder in a Small Town (1999). He also appeared as the Mock Turtle in an NBC adaptation of Alice in Wonderland.

Wilder’s memoir Kiss Me Like a Stranger: My Search for Love and Art was published in 2005. After that he wrote fiction--the 2007 novel My French Whore; 2008’s The Woman Who Wouldn’t; a collection of stories, What Is This Thing Called Love?, in 2010; and the novella Something to Remember You By: A Perilous Romance in 2013.

So sad....

The Ned Kelly Awards: Australian Crime Writers Association

The Ned Kelly Awards, given by the Australian Crime Writers Association.

Best Fiction:
Before It Breaks by Dave Warner

Best First Fiction
Resurrection Bay by Emma Viskic

Best True Crime
Certain Admissions by Gideon Haigh

S.D. Harvey Award for Short Stories:
“Flesh,” by Roni O’Brien

Lifetime Achievement: Carmel Shute

For the entire list of nominated books and stories, go HERE.

HT: TheRapSheet

Davitt Award Winners: Sisters in Crime Australia

DAVITT AWARDS, given by Sisters in Crime Australia

Best Adult Novel: Resurrection Bay, by Emma Viskic (Echo)

Other nominees: Medea’s Curse: Natalie King, Forensic Psychiatrist, by Anne Buist (Text); Fall, by Candice Fox (Penguin Random House); Give the Devil His Due, by Sulari Gentill (Pantera Press); Storm Clouds, by Bronwyn Parry (Hachette Australia); and Time to Run, by J.M. Peace, (Pan Macmillan Australia)

Best Young Adult Novel: Risk, by Fleur Ferris (Penguin Random House)

Other Nominees: In the Skin of a Monster, by Kathryn Barker (Allen & Unwin); Every Move, by Ellie Marney (Allen & Unwin); and Stay with Me, by Maureen McCarthy (Allen & Unwin)

Best Children’s Novel: Friday Barnes 2: Under Suspicion, by R.A. Spratt (Penguin Random House)

Other Nominees: Verity Sparks and the Scarlet Hand, by Susan Green (Walker Press); and Theophilus Grey and the Demon Thief, by Catherine Jinks (Allen & Unwin)

Best Non-fiction: Wild Man, by Alecia Simmonds (Affirm Press)

Other Nominees: Black Widow, by Carol Baxter (Allen & Unwin); Why Did They Do It?, by Cheryl Critchley and Helen McGrath (Pan Macmillan Australia); The Sting, by Kate Kyriacou (Echo); Behind Closed Doors, by Sue Smetherst (Simon & Schuster); and You’re Just Too Good to Be True, by Sofija Stefanovic (Penguin Random House)

Best Debut: Resurrection Bay, by Emma Viskic (Echo)

Other nominees: In the Skin of a Monster, by Kathryn Barker (Allen & Unwin); Medea’s Curse: Natalie King, Forensic Psychiatrist, by Anne Buist (Text); Please Don’t Leave Me Here, by Tania Chandler (Scribe); Double Madness, by Caroline de Costa (Margaret River Press); Risk, by Fleur Ferris (Penguin Random House); Good Money, by J.M. Green (Scribe); Time to Run, by J.M. Peace (Pan Macmillan Australia); and The Lost Swimmer, by Ann Turner (Simon & Schuster)

HT: TheRapSheet

Sunday, August 28, 2016


Registration Now Open for 
Left Coast Crime 2018: Crime in the Comstock

We are thrilled to announce that registration is now open for LCC 2018 — March 22–25, 2018 — in Reno, Nevada at the Nugget Casino Resort. Located in Reno/Sparks, Nevada, the legendary Nugget Casino Resort is consistently ranked at the top of Reno resorts and Sparks hotels. The Nugget features a complimentary airport shuttle, eight award-winning restaurants, an indoor atrium pool, a gym, and a legendary Casino and Bingo Hall.

Guests of Honor: Naomi Hirahara & William Kent Krueger
Toastmaster: Todd Borg
Ghost of Honor: Mark Twain (McAvoy Layne)

Early Bird Registration for LCC 2018 is $175 until March 19, 2017 (close of LCC 2017)
Register Online Now!

Our convention rate is about $82 for the convention nights in the newly remodeled West Tower, plus three nights before and after the convention (subject to availability) so you can extend your stay in Nevada. Our convention room rate is fixed at $69 plus a mandatory daily resort fee (currently $12.50), which includes wireless Internet in guest rooms, round-trip shuttle transportation from the Reno-Tahoe International Airport, Atrium Pool and Fitness Center access, and valet and self-parking in the Nugget’s secure covered parking structure. Registrants will receive the hotel reservation code in late March 2017 when the hotel will begin accepting reservations for our group.

Visit the LCC 2018 website for more information about Crime in the Comstock.

Left Coast Crime 2017: Honolulu Havoc
We hope to see you all in Hawaii this spring!
March 16–19, 2017 in Honolulu at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort. Our hotel is located on Waikiki Beach on 22 beautiful waterfront acres, the legendary Hilton Hawaiian Village Beach Resort features five pools, 20 restaurants and bars, and daily activities ranging from morning exercise classes to Hula lessons.
 • Lifetime Achievement: Faye Kellerman & Jonathan Kellerman
 • Guests of Honor: Dana Stabenow & Colin Cotterill
 • Toastmaster: Laurie R. King
 • Ghost of Honor: Earl Derr Biggers, creator of Charlie Chan
More information about LCC 2017 and online registration

Left Coast Crime 2019: Whale of a Crime
Left Coast Crime 2019 will be held in Vancouver, British Columbia, at the Hyatt Regency Vancouver, March 28–31, 2019.
Co-chairs Colleen Glynn and Linda McNab are hard at work planning for the convention. More information will be available later this year.

If you are interested in learning more about hosting or helping with a future Left Coast Crime Convention, please let us know! The LCC Standing Committee would love to help you with your bid and answer all your questions. You will receive all the support you need!

Cartoon of the Day: Cats

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Cartoon of the Day: Library

Cartoon of the Day: Library

Ngaio Marsh Award Winners

Paul Cleave and Ray Berard were announced as the winners of the 2016 Ngaio Marsh Awards at the WORD Christchurch Writers and Readers Festival.

TRUST NO ONE (Upstart Press), a mind-bending psychological thriller about a writer with early onset Alzheimer’s who starts confessing the murders in his novels were real, earned Cleave his record third Ngaio Marsh Award for Best Crime Novel. The judges described it as “a stunningly audacious novel that functions as a literary hall of mirrors” – a book that “succeeds brilliantly on many different levels”.

Ray Berard scooped the Ngaio Marsh Award for Best First Novel with his Rotorua-set debut thriller INSIDE THE BLACK HORSE (Mary Egan Publishing). The judges praised his tale of the aftermath of an armed robbery that interrupts a drug deal as “a lucid and potent portrait of good people and gangsters that is unmistakably Kiwi in flavour and tone... a fine story with considerable depth.”

“It was wonderful to celebrate our best modern-day Kiwi crime writers at a terrific event just a short drive from where Dame Ngaio used to write her world-renowned mysteries,” said Judging Convenor Craig Sisterson. “It was a tough year for our judges. We had a record number of entries, launched a new category, and ended up with eight superb finalists that illustrate how varied local crime writing can be. There was everything from a former All Black entwined in French match-fixing to a robotic private eye.”

Across the board the international judging panel was highly impressed with this year’s finalists, said Sisterson. “Every novel was a strong contender in the eyes of our judges, and we would have been happy to celebrate any of them as deserving winners. But we had to make a choice, and TRUST NO ONE and INSIDE THE BLACK HORSE edged ahead from a deep field. They’re both cracking great crime tales.”

Berard’s debut, which was a finalist for both awards, was inspired by a diary he kept during his years working as an Area Manager for the TAB across the upper North Island after he emigrated from Canada during the mid 1990s. He was mentored during his writing process by Barbara and Chris Else.

The Ngaio Marsh Awards are made annually in Christchurch for the best crime, mystery, or thriller novels written by New Zealand citizens and residents. The Awards’ namesake, Dame Ngaio Marsh, was a Christchurch mystery writer and theatre director renowned worldwide as one of the four “Queens of Crime” of the Golden Age of Detective Fiction. More than thirty years after her death, Dame Ngaio’s books remain beloved by many generations of readers. The Ngaio Marsh Awards were established in 2010 with the blessing of Dame Ngaio’s closest living relative, John Dacres-Manning.

Friday, August 26, 2016

The Mid-Atlantic Does Murder: True Crimes by Cathy Pickens

Mystery Readers Journal changed up its themes for 2016, but not before our True Crime columnist Cathy Pickens submitted her column. Rather than wait until we add Mid-Atlantic Mysteries to our line-up, I thought I'd post this great article.

 Cathy Pickens’ mystery series started with the St. Martin’s Malice Domestic-award winning Southern Fried. She conducts popular workshops on developing the creative process and developed a program to teach jail inmates how to start their own businesses.

Cathy Pickens:
The Mid-Atlantic Does Murder  

In the diverse and densely populated mid-Atlantic states, what’s a better illustration of their crime history than cases open to continuing speculation?

Sex, Drugs, Rock & Roll 

In 1979, when parents enrolled their children in Philadelphia Mainline’s Upper Merion High School, they didn’t expect the kind of education or the educators they got. Bear-like Bill Bradfield, the English and Latin teacher, had a live-in teacher-girlfriend, plus other girlfriends (some married) for added entertainment.

The principal, Dr. Jay Smith, was an Army Reserve colonel with a rigid manner and subscriptions to swinger and porn magazines.

In a swirl of sexual experimentation and drama, free love became establishment at Upper Merion High School.

What created such a bubbling stew of sexual intrigue? A sign of the ‘70s? A confluence of personalities around a master manipulator?

It was all fun and games until someone ended up dead in a car trunk.

The body of English teacher Susan Reinert, wrapped in chains, was found in her car trunk in the parking lot of a Harrisburg grocery store. The story exploded over national news as the tangled facts slowly unwound: Reinert had divorced her husband, was having an affair with fellow teacher Bradfield, who was living with yet another teacher. Her young children—ages 10 and 11—were missing and, tragically, have never been found. Reinert had been beaten and later injected with a fatal dose of morphine.

Was Bill Bradfield a pied piper of perversion? Many who followed the case thought so.

Was principal Smith—the military man—a hired killer? Or a deranged man seeking vengeance on a quiet teacher for unnamed reasons? He had, after all, been convicted of robbing two Sears stores, disguised as an armored car guard.

Was Reinert killed for the $700,000 life insurance policy benefitting Bradfield? Did Smith, living out a macho fantasy, commit the murder or was his involvement just another Bradfield con job?

Two books (one written by Joseph Wambaugh), a TV movie, and a memoir written by principal Jay Smith rehashed the details, but the motives remain murky.

Did Wambaugh’s involvement skew the investigation and the trial results? An appellate court believed it might. Documents later found in the effects of a state trooper who investigated the case showed that Wambaugh had paid at least one officer more than a trooper’s annual salary for inside information on the investigation.

Smith’s attorney William Costopoulos got him off death row after six years, then got him out of prison. The court held the prosecution had withheld evidence possibly helpful to Smith and thereby created double jeopardy. Smith could never be retried.

Did Smith kill Reinert? He says no, in a self-published book detailing the holes he saw in the prosecution case. Smith died in 2009 at age 80.

Was Bradfield a gifted con artist who found the right pawns and victims all gathered in one place? Was he also a murderer? Or simply the orchestra leader? He was at Cape May with other teachers during that deadly holiday weekend. Did any of his companions conspire with him? Did he hire a murderous thug (with money he’d supposedly invested for Susan Reinert but which he’d kept)?

In 1998, Bradfield died in prison at age 64, fifteen years into his sentence. After weaving lots of wild stories about how Smith was going to kill Reinert and how he didn’t know she’d left him her insurance policy, Bradfield remained quiet about what really happened. Despite books and movies and loads of speculation, the facts remain a mystery—at surely one of the wildest high school English departments ever.

High Tech—1904-Style 

In 1904, decades before the classic hardboiled P.I. novel debuted, a murder mystery suited for a twisty crime novel unfolded in Charlottesville, Virginia.

J. Samuel McCue, former mayor of Charlottesville and a successful lawyer, returned home from church one evening with his wife.

He’d started upstairs, then turned to get something he’d left downstairs. His wife Fannie continued past him up the stairs—where she met a masked man with a gun. In the dim light, he shot her, ran downstairs, and smashed out a large back window to escape.

Former mayor McCue had little faith in the police chief, so he sought help from Roanoke private investigator W. G. Baldwin. The PI surveyed the scene—the upstairs landing where she died, the shattered window, the torn spider web outside the window where the gunman had escaped.

As Baldwin examined the ground outside the window, he saw the glint of metal—a small ring with a broken screw attached, the lanyard ring from a gun.

While Baldwin searched, McCue was in his study packing his briefcase. Even in his grief, he couldn’t ignore clients who needed him. He also needed to stop by the bank, he told Baldwin, to get his will from the safe deposit box. His wife—and only heir—was now dead, so he needed to change his will. He was a lawyer, after all. Such details were his bread and butter.

PI Baldwin accompanied him on his walk to the bank, on his way to see the police chief.

The chief handed Baldwin the unusual bullets taken from Mrs. McCue’s body.

Back at McCue’s office, Baldwin asked him the delicate but obvious question: Do you have any enemies? You were first on the stairs. The bullets were meant for you.

McCue named two men with whom he’d had difficulties, including Reginald Evans, who’d accused McCue of seducing his wife while meeting with her about divorcing Evans.

As any devoted detective would, McCue followed the leads. Mrs. Evans was indeed a looker, but the Evanses had reconciled.

McCue then went to the telephone office to call a gun expert about the odd bullets and the lanyard ring. He chatted up Miss Virginia Bragg, the telephone operator, then continued to follow leads to their dead-ends.

Later, Miss Bragg called him at his hotel to report an unusual phone call former mayor McCue had placed. As she checked to make sure the call connected properly, she’d heard just enough: a woman telling McCue to “send the money now.”

Baldwin, suspecting blackmail, asked Miss Bragg to find out who and where McCue was calling.

He then visited his client and asked if he had any personal skeletons he needed to tell him about. McCue drew himself up in all his Victorian dignity: “Certainly not.”

Baldwin quickly cracked the case: thanks to the lead from Miss Bragg, Baldwin found that McCue had a beautiful woman stashed in a Washington hotel—none other than Hattie Evans.

Mr. Evans was an Englishman and owned an English Webley revolver. The bullets and the lanyard ring both came from a Webley revolver—an unusual weapon for anyone in that area to own. Evans said his revolver had disappeared from his desk.

Hattie Evans told Baldwin she’d given McCue her husband’s gun, afraid her husband might act on his jealous suspicions and do something foolish.

Baldwin searched his client’s house for the revolver. He found a dusty envelope in McCue’s desk: McCue’s Last Will and Testament. Going through jacket pockets in McCue’s closet, he found no gun but did get his fingers tangled up in fibers stuck on one jacket. He carefully folded the jacket and took it with him.

He asked the police chief what McCue was wearing the night of his wife’s murder. The chief described the jacket Baldwin had taken from the closet—the jacket with the sticky spider web on it. The killer had run through a spider web escaping through the garden window.

Why did McCue hire Baldwin to “solve” his wife’s murder? For the same narcissistic reason he walked with his PI to visit his safe deposit box. McCue didn’t go there to get his will—that was dusty and stuffed in a desk drawer at home. He didn’t get anything out. Instead, he put something in: he’d carried the Webley revolver with the broken lanyard ring down the street in his briefcase, his PI at his side.

The case accounts have some major discrepancies. The trial account by the publisher of Charlottesville’s The Daily Progress gives little mention of PI Baldwin but lots of speculation about discord in the McCue household and about his philandering. Mrs. McCue had been strangled and hit with a bat before being shot, so things were messier and not quite so well planned as the PI’s account suggests.

Was there a Webley revolver and a missing lanyard swivel? The weapon that shot Mrs. McCue was a long gun owned by McCue. Was there a spider web and an incriminating jacket? That seems a bit far-fetched, even for a detective novel.

The newspaperman’s account focused on the official version of the facts, as presented at trial. The PI’s point of view was the focus of crime authors Boswell and Thompson’s account. Any event has different perspectives.

Did hiring the PI help build the case? Or was the case being solved before he arrived from Roanoke? The professional competition between PIs and police doesn’t rage only on the pages of novels, it seems.

Regardless of how the case developed, the wealthy lawyer and former mayor was perhaps the most prominent person ever hanged for murder by the Commonwealth of Virginia.

We might think of the days of phone operators as decidedly low-tech, in the days when we can track cell tower pings. But even simple technology can solve a crime—even though it may never explain the mysteries of the human mind.



Costopoulos, William C. Principal Suspect: The True Story of Dr. Jay Smith and the Main Line Murders (1996).

Noe, Denise, “Two Sues and Bill,”

Swartz-Nobel, Loretta. Engaged to Murder (1988).

Smith, Jay Charles. Joseph Wambaugh and the Jay Smith Case (2008).

Wambaugh, Joseph. Echoes in the Darkness (1987).


Boswell, Charles and Lewis Thompson. Advocates for Murder, “The Case of the Nosy Operator,” pp. 77-94 (1962).

Lindsay, James H. The McCue Murder: Complete Story of the Crime and the Famous Trial of the Ex-Mayor of Charlottesville (1938), accessed August 2016,$11i.

Cartoon of the Day: Bookworm Group

Thursday, August 25, 2016

BBC to film SEVEN more Agatha Christie Adaptations

The BBC confirmed yesterday that there will be seven more Agatha Christie adapations over the next four years. And Then There Were None, starring Aidan Turner and Maeve Dermody, came out last year (now on AcornTV in the U.S.)

Filming is underway on the adaptation of Christie’s short story "The Witness For The Prosecution" that will be a two-part drama starring Kim Cattrall and Toby Jones.

There will still be another seven after The Witness For The Prosecution airs, with TV bosses confirming three of these will be Agatha’s works Ordeal By Innocence, The ABC Murders, and Death Comes As The End.

The Creative Process of Writing: Guest Post by Robert Buschel

Robert Buschel is an attorney in Florida who handles both criminal and civil cases, some of which have been featured on 48 Hours, Dateline, as well as other national news outlets and in People, USA Today, and The Miami Herald. He is a member of the Florida Bar, California Bar and admitted as Attorney of the United States Supreme Court. His first novel By Silent Majority, a political thriller set in the White House, will be published this month.

Robert Buschel:
The Creative Process of Writing

If you’re a true believer, a feeling of outrage or sadness washes over you every time the system doesn’t work the way it’s designed. Then you might figure out, by design it’s not meant to work at all – it’s just a front. Power creates the dynamics that lead to one motive -- greed. Greed, greed for money, influence, recognition, and acceptance give rise to plots and subplots in the my mind. Outrage and sadness set off strong emotions giving birth to these stories. Some of the great stories of corruption, conspiracies, cover-ups, and revenge are born in the smoke filled star chamber of the mind. I don’t think I’m alone in this process. With the proper mental exercise, the universe of creativity is a playground for all.

When thinking about characters I think about the character in the same way like the comedian thinks about his own stage-character. The comedian has to focus on himself and becoming himself; be hyper aware of every detail from voice and expressions. Then the comedian’s routine becomes second nature during a performance. To modulate it based upon feedback from the crowd there has to be a confidence in the material –the monologue and the character created – the comedian.

At the same time, the writer must think like an actor, able to empathize and understand someone who they are not. Understand what it must be like to be an evil woman who works as a housekeeper and a spy, in a part of town where the writer has never been. Then wonder how does she speak? What does she care about? In the end, what’s her overarching ambition? Just answering those questions can develop an interesting character. Of course, what is she wearing will interest other readers.

This process can be described as crazy, but I like watching a conversation between and among characters as if they are acting out a scene from a movie or a play in front of me. Play it over and over in my mind to capture and describe the setting, the narrative, and the action. If it’s a genuine conversation, it will move the story along and convey needed information without being too preachy or heavy handed.

The stories that make up a novel don’t flow out of me in sequence. In order to avoid boredom or “block,” I wrote the end of By Silent Majority after I wrote the beginning. The current manuscript in progress was written the same way with a technique of working my way to the middle. This process allows me to make better references and connections from one point in the story to the consequence later on in the story. It’s fresh in my mind and the consequence can be written with the desired level of causation.

Keeping a journal of sorts has been essential. A novel is one big story that contains many smaller stories. These stories we write down in a book can be used by a character to describe something in her childhood to enrichen the understanding of who is that character. There are pieces of a writer’s life in every story. No story, no matter how long or short, marks a time of contiguous thought in the writer’s life. Technically, all ideas create a snapshot of what was going on in the writer’s life at the time the ideas were written. Remembered dreams and more particularly the feelings associated with those dreams are worthy of recording. Perhaps a character can use the dream. A real dream has an inherent truthful quality to it.

To create great stories, I’ve trained myself to ask, what if this story were different? Stress the part of the story that presses the ethical question. Like a law professor I change the hypothetical but ask would this make the story be different and better? Writers have to hear things differently. Wonder not only about what is said, but what is not being said. In between the sandwich of truth and reality is the great fiction of mystery, intrigue, and thriller.

I don’t think a good writer has to be strange, have mommy issues, or be alcoholic. Some of the great writers seem to be steeped in depression and self-abuse. There has to be more to it than being insane. I might have to apologize, but I think linearly and am normal enough to hold down manage a career as a lawyer. It’s about mastering a process that lets the writing flow. The writer must be able to stare off into space or pace, imagining the story continuing on a canvass in front of you; carefully choosing the detail and subtlety that enriches a story. As the story unfolds, record it with description, action, and dialogue.

Writers have to like the writing and like the process of creating. This is true because getting a novel published (outside of self-publishing) will take a long time and with every writing the risk of rejection and the reality of marketing and brand building is ever present. Do you like every movie your favorite actor was ever in? Probably not. The same with readers; the reader gets to decide, if they like what you’re putting down. Second book was great, first book – didn’t know you even wrote a first book. The timing, the marketing, the changes in the reading landscape, are all forces that can affect the salability of a book – so the writer better enjoy the process of writing, not just the idea of being a world famous author.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Understanding Over-Rice Dishes: Guest post by Ed Lin

Ed Lin is a journalist by training and an all-around stand-up kinda guy. He’s the author of several books: Ghost Month; Waylaid, his literary debut; and his Robert Chow crime series, set in 1970s Manhattan Chinatown: This Is a Bust, Snakes Can’t Run, and One Red Bastard. Lin, who is of Taiwanese and Chinese descent, is the first author to win three Asian American Literary Awards. Lin lives in New York with his wife, actress Cindy Cheung, and their son.

“Come for the exotic food and fascinating setting; stay for the characters.”
—The Boston Globe

Ed Lin:
Understanding Over-Rice Dishes

If you’re dining solo and looking for cheap eats in Chinatown, it’s a buyer’s market.

The sub-$6 meal in Manhattan’s enclave is ubiquitous, though one should be picky even at that price point.
Roast Pork, the Chinatown Happy Meal, $5.50

The bottom of the rung is the carton of streetcart noodles at $2 a pop. They are never really that good (noodles strewn across a hot grill tend to harden into plastic-sheathed wire) and are meant to satisfy a craving rather than hunger.

Instead, one should pay up the $5.95 or so for an over-rice dish, which many restaurants list on a separate section on the menu. For one thing, it allows one to have a meal while seated and for another thing, an over-rice dish is a solid meal.

The bonus is that there’s an endless variety, sometimes even more so than the offered entrees, and they accommodate all diets and allergies. Gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan, seafood only, no seafood, no problem. Every taste is accounted for except for those of people who don’t like white or brown rice. And if you don’t like rice, then get the hell out of Chinatown—now.

Also, never confuse over-rice dishes with fried rice. Fried rice is essentially leftovers thrown together in a wok and has its own charms, especially to those nursing hangovers. Over-rice dishes are single-portion meals.

I’ll tell you two of my favorites.

In the early 90s, my favorite bachelor meal was lemongrass chicken over broken rice at a Vietnamese restaurant that was run by ethnic Chinese. That sauce alone had a distinctive flavorpoint and yet hit several notes simultaneously like a two-handed piano chord: lemon, lime, mint, salt, chili, and scallion so fresh it nipped my tongue like a raw onion. The broken rice was a perfect vehicle to deliver the sauce since a rice grain broken in half has more surface area (and a larger interface through which to soak up sauce) than a single whole grain.

The chicken itself? I like to think of chicken as a good rhythm guitarist. Show up, play on the beat, have a meaty texture, never be cut and dried, and let the sauce/seasoning play lead.

I think fish sauce was in there, as well, and even though I’m allergic to all seafood (I break out), I still scraped it all up with the flat side of my fork.

Wait, you say, a fork? Yes, a fork! Chopsticks are for eating out of a bowl. Over-rice dishes are served on plates, so don’t reach for the chopsticks—grab a fork.

My other favorite over-rice dish is that Cantonese soul food, roast pork. Your typical Cantonese place has a number of meats hanging in the window. Make sure you get roast “pork” and not roast “pig.” The former is roasted with barbeque sauce and the latter is an entire pig roasted plain until the skin is crisp, similar to lechón. For the purposes of an over-rice dish (simple, tasty and filling), you will want the barbequed pork. The roast pig is best as an entree as it needs to have its profile filled out with added sauces and stewed vegetables. You start futzing with what needs to be added, it reminds me of the mid-80s, when people began walking around with portable equalizers to supposedly get better sound from their Walkmen. You want the best sound possible from your music? Stay at home and fire up your stereo system. You want to eat your roast pig properly? Bring out your friends and have a full meal with it.

I digress.

Roast pork, also known as char siu, with its sweet and tangy glaze, only needs the plainest of rice to complement it. The pleasant patches of fat in the meat nearly serve as the vegetable component to the dish by providing a contrast in texture.

In the late 90s, when I was working at a wire service on the 5pm-to-midnight shift, I would pick up a carton of roast pork over rice for $1.85 and head to the much-missed Music Palace movie theater for a double feature before work. They didn’t care if you brought in outside food, even though they certainly were no slouches with their own offerings, which included several different herbal iced teas, almond cookies and packages of dried squid.

I would chow away while watching Stephen Chow with the other working stiffs in the theater, which really brought home the original support base of over-rice dishes. They are inseparably a food of the working class, the people who didn’t have the time or money for otherwise eating out and worked odd-enough hours so they’d likely be eating alone.

While rice itself is a staple of the Chinese diet, one must also consider that when Chinese people try to go upscale, they eliminate it. The hoity-toitiest meals at weddings and other festivities are all meat and seafood dishes to show how prosperous the hosts are. Whenever I find myself at such functions, I always miss the rice. And my fork.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Cartoon of the Day: English Major

James Bond Thriller Map

Atlas Obscura, one of my favorite sites, posted this James Bond Map. 

The Ian Fleming Thriller Map shows the real locations for all Bond’s escapades during the novels. The spy’s missions took him across four continents and dozens of countries-- to Japan, Seychelles, Mexico and French Guyana. Each spot, marked by cross-hairs, explains what happened for Bond, his rivals and lovers.

The legend for the map is divided into different books and lists his exploits during the most significant scenes in each adventure. It's essentially a list of ingredients for Fleming's recipe on how to plot a spy thriller.  Thrill

John Zelnick, an illustrator, created the map, which was published in 1987. This was the same year the Bond film The Living Daylights was released. The map forms part of PJ Mode’s collection of persuasive maps at the Cornell Digital Library.

Read more here.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Cartoon of the Day: Best 'Cellar' List

Cartoon of the Day: Best Cellar List

Sidewise Awards for Alternate History

Winners of this year's Sidewise Award for Alternate History, presented at MidAmeriCon II on August 20.

Short Form: Bill Crider. "It Doesn't Matter Anymore" in Tales from the Otherverse: Stories of Alternate History (ed. James Reasoner). Rough Edges Press, 2015

Long Form: Julie Mayhew. The Big Lie. Hot Key Books, 2015.

Cartoon of the Day: Librarian Humor

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Award Winners

Killer Nashville (August 18-21// Nashville, Tennessee) announced the 2016 Silver Falchion Awards Winners. Although there are 20 categories, the winner for Best Mystery/Crime is Kay Kendall for Rainy Day Women! 

For the full list, go HERE. Winners were announced tonight!

Barbara Fass Leavy: R.I.P.

Sad News. Barbara Fass Leavy: R.I.P. 

Barbara contributed to the Mystery Readers Journal several times, including  "Some Thoughts on Depressed Northern Detectives" in the Scandinavian issue (Volume 30: 4); "A Hurricane in Paradise: Ruth Rendell's The Crocodile Bird" in Extreme Weather Mysteries (Volume 30:2),

Barbara Fass Leavy retired as a full professor from the Department of English, Queens College, the City University of New York. She retained her honorary appointment as Adjunct Professor of English in Psychiatry at the DeWitt Wallace Institute for the History of Psychiatry, Weill Cornell Medical College of Cornell University.

Her previous work focused on two areas: literature and folklore; and the theme of plague in literary works from the Middle Ages to the present. Rather whimsically she told her six granddaughters that she is an expert on mermaids, but in a more serious vein, to google her name and the word "mermaid" is to see how widespread is her work on such folklore figures as mermaids, mermen, trolls, demon lovers, and swan maidens. She also wrote on gender relations and was formerly on the editorial board of Tulsa Studies in Women's Literature.

Before retiring as a professor of literature, Leavy taught courses in crime fiction, specifically in Women and Crime Fiction and Crime Fiction and Culture (the ethnic detective). She lectured on the elements of psychology in mystery novels to members of the Institute for the History of Psychiatry. Her study of Ruth Rendell brings together many areas of her studies: family relations, gender, disease as a literary theme, folklore, and mythology.

She will be missed.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Cartoon of the Day: Cats

HT: Jayna Monroe

And my Cats

Anthony & Macavity Finalists Talk Favorite First Novels

Art Taylor, a First Novel finalist for both the Macavity and the Anthony, for his novel On the Road with Del & Louise, asks the other finalists what first novels they themselves would name as favorites and why. Check out their responses on SleuthSayers today. Included: Patricia Abbott, Glen Erik Hamilton, Rob Hart, Chris Holm, David Joy, Ausma Zehanat Khan, Brian Panowich, and, or course, Art Taylor! Thanks, Art for doing this and sharing this link.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Bookstore Sign of the Day

2016 Silver Falchion Awards Finalists

Killer Nashville (August 18-21// Nashville, Tennessee) announced the 2016 Silver Falchion Awards Finalists. Although there are 20 categories of finalists, here are two of interest to Mystery Readers. For the full list, go HERE. Winners will be announced at the Saturday, August 20, Banquet.

Best Mystery / Crime
R.G. Belsky, Shooting for the Stars
Kris Calvin, One Murder More
Kay Kendall, Rainy Day Women
BV Lawson, Dies Irae
Melinda Leigh, Minutes to Kill (A Scarlet Falls Novel)
D.M. Pulley, The Dead Key
Michael Ransom, The Ripper Gene
Linda Sands, 3 Women Walk into a Bar
K.C. Tansley, The Girl Who Ignored Ghosts
Jan Thomas & Grant Jerkins, Done in One

Best Thriller
R.G. Belsky, Shooting for the Stars
Baron R. Birtcher, Hard Latitudes
Thomas Davidson, Past is Present
Bevan Frank, The Mind of God
Debra K. Gaskill, Call Fitz
Jerry Hatchett, Unallocated Space
Melinda Leigh, Minutes to Kill (A Scarlet Falls Novel)
Michael Ransom, The Ripper Gene
M.A. Richards, Choice of Enemies
Jan Thomas & Grant Jerkins, Done in One
John Vance, Death by Mournful Numbers

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Cartoon of the Day: Library

Mysterious Press Award Finalists

Otto Penzler, President and CEO of, has announced the finalists for the inaugural Mysterious Press Award, which was established as a contest for a mystery novel to be published as Best E-Book Original by and distributed in the United States and Canada by Open Road Integrated Media and published world-wide.

The finalists are:

ALIBI by Lee Goodman (represented by Janet Reid)
THE DOWNSIDE by Mike Cooper (represented by Janet Reid)
BRIGHT LIKE BLOOD by Leigh C. Rourks (represented by Larry Kirshbaum)

"As electronic publishing has become a significant element of the publishing world, we decided to recognize an outstanding work of mystery fiction by offering a substantial advance and a great opportunity for world-wide recognition," said Penzler. "We had an extraordinary array of outstanding crime novels submitted for the contest and will be thrilled to publish whichever one is chosen as the winner."

These top three entries have been circulated to Mysterious Press's world-wide partners for a final decision. The winner will be chosen based on a variety of criteria, including originality and literary quality.

The winning entry will receive a prize of $25,000 and guaranteed world-wide publication. The $25,000 prize will be an advance against future royalties. will publish the winning title as an e-book original with print-on-demand copies also available. World-wide partners will have all rights (excluding dramatic rights) to publish in all formats.

The winner will be announced at the 2016 Frankfurt Book Fair.

The contest was open to established authors as well as first-time novelists. Submissions of complete and unpublished novels were accepted from accredited literary agents.

More information about Mysterious Press can be found on

Monday, August 15, 2016

Cartoon of the Day: Austen Spoilers

Blood on the Bayou: Bouchercon 2016 Anthology

I tantalized you with the news of the Bouchercon Anthology: Blood on the Bayou a month ago before it was available to order. You can get it now! 

Bouchercon will be invading New Orleans for its annual world mystery convention this September. Readers, writers, publishers, editors, agents, booksellers and other lovers of crime fiction will gather for a weekend of education, entertainment, and fun! It is the world’s premiere event bringing together all parts of the mystery and crime fiction community.

In conjunction with this year’s event, Down & Out Books has published BLOOD ON THE BAYOU: Bouchercon Anthology 2016, edited by Greg Herren.

“I am honored to have the opportunity to edit this outstanding collection of stories,” said Herren, an award-winning author of mystery and suspense novels. “It demonstrates the deep appreciation each of the contributing authors has to their craft.”

“This is the third year that we have had the privilege of publishing Bouchercon’s official anthology,” added Eric Campbell, publisher of Down & Out Books, “and I share in Greg’s enthusiasm for these stories.”

Nearly 100 authors blindly submitted a story for consideration by three industry professionals, who had the incredibly difficult task of narrowing the list down to just 22 stories.  

Kaye Wilkinson Barley, Eric Beetner, G. J. Brown, Sheila Connolly, O’Neil De Noux, Barbara Ferrer, John Floyd, Alison Gaylin, Greg Herren, BV Lawson, R. T. Lawton, Deborah Lacy, Edith Maxwell, Liz Milliron, Terrie Moran, David Morrell, Dino Parenti, Mike Penn, Gary Phillips, Thomas Pluck, Paula Pumphrey and Elaine Viets were chosen to have their short stories included in the anthology. Heather Graham, co-chair of Bouchercon 2016, has written the introduction.

Each of the selected authors contributed their stories to the anthology and the Bouchercon Committee and Down & Out Books have agreed that all proceeds from the sale of BLOOD ON THE BAYOU will go to support the New Orleans Public Library system and by extension readers and writers everywhere.

The book is available at Down & Out Books. It is also available in Trade Paperback from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and in Kindle, Nook, and Kobo ebook formats. Blood on the Bayou Anthology will also be available at Bouchercon in the Dealers Room. 

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Cartoon of the Day: Cats

Sisters in Crime Diversity Report

Sisters in Crime has made public the 2016 Sisters in Crime Publishing Summit Report on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the Mystery Community, titled “Report For Change.” This report highlights data compiled through a survey of 1,100 of its members which ascertains race, sexual and gender identity, and any disabilities. The report also identifies best practices the organization should adopt in order to stay at the forefront of this important movement, and suggests concrete changes to be made in the greater mystery community.

“We recognized that writers of color, LGBT writers, and writers with disabilities face additional obstacles to getting published and finding readers that had not been fully explored,” says Leslie Budewitz, Sisters in Crime President. “Our goal with this report is to provide data, experience, and recommendations that everyone in the crime fiction community---writers, publishers, agents, booksellers, librarians, and organizations---can use to deepen our understanding and expand opportunities.”

The report sets the data from the Sisters in Crime member survey against US census data, providing a dramatic visual of the diverse authors in the genre. While White, non-Hispanics make up 62% of the US population, they make up 93% of Sisters in Crime members, with the remaining 7% divided between African American (3%), Native American (1.5%), Asian (1.5%) and Hispanic (1%) authors.

“As difficult as it is for white authors, it's tougher for people of color,” says one member surveyed. “The mainstream publishing world is very white and privileged and disconnected from the reading audience. Editors have trouble imagining an audience that isn't like them.”

With the rise of e-books and self-publishing, many writers of color are bypassing the gatekeepers and releasing their stories on their own. While only 21% of members surveyed reported self-publishing their last book (27% through a Big Five house while 35% through a small, traditional press), 63% of writers of color self-published their most recent book.

“Put bluntly, if people of color choose self-publishing freely, that’s fine,” says author and journalist Steph Cha. “If they choose it after rejection… that’s a ghetto.”

Similar patterns were identified among LGBT authors. Less than 10% reported publishing through a Big 5 publisher for their last book and nearly 50% self-published.

As a 30-year-old organization that is dedicated to the ongoing advancement, recognition and professional development of women crime writers, Sisters in Crime has reaffirmed its commitment towards expanding diversity in their membership and the greater mystery community. In conjunction with the Report for Change, SinC also launched Frankie’s List, a database of writers of color, curated by and named for their first African American president, Frankie Y Bailey. Additional initiatives include compiling a list of publishers and editors actively seeking diverse authors, advocating for diverse authors in bookstores and libraries, and actively recruiting members of all backgrounds.

A summary of this report will be presented at the 2016 Bouchercon World Mystery Convention in New Orleans. The full report is available at

Friday, August 12, 2016

How My Two Huge Dogs Became Characters in The Dread Line: Guest post by Bruce DeSilva

Bruce DeSilva grew up in a parochial Massachusetts mill town where metaphors and alliteration were always in short supply. Nevertheless, his crime fiction has won the Edgar and Macavity Awards; been listed as a finalist for the Shamus, Anthony, and Barry Awards; and been published in ten foreign languages. His short stories have appeared in Akashic Press's noir anthologies, and his book reviews for The Associated Press appear in hundreds of publications. Previously, he was a journalist for 40 years, writing and editing stories that won nearly every journalism prize including the Pulitzer. His new novel is The Dread Line.

Bruce DeSilva:
How My Two Huge Dogs Became Characters in The Dread Line

I never intended to make Brady, my big lovable Bernese Mountain dog, and Rondo, my huge goofy mutt, characters in one of my hard-boiled crime novels; but when I write, they are always with me, often sitting on my feet, their big heads in my lap.

So I suppose it was inevitable—but it was also a happy accident.

The fact is that when I write, I rarely intend to do anything. I never outline. I don’t think about my plot in advance. I just set my characters in motion and discover the story as I go.

Each time I start a new book, the first thing I do is to write a paragraph that establishes its mood. Later, it may end up on the first page of the novel, or somewhere in the middle of the book, or even nowhere at all. But until I get the mood right, I can’t press on. For me, everything flows from there.

When I began The Dread Line, the fifth novel in my series featuring Liam Mulligan, the first thing I wrote was this:

 “He was a serial killer, but I didn’t hold that against him. It was just his nature. The way he killed irked me some. His victims were all missing their heads. But what I couldn’t abide was his habit of using my porch as a dump site.”

 I had no idea who the killer was. Worse, I didn’t want to write another serial killer book. I’d already published one (Providence Rag) based on a real case I once covered as a journalist, and reliving those terrible days had been painful for me. I had vowed never to write about a serial killer again. But I loved the feel of that paragraph—the way it set the noir mood of the novel I wanted to write.

As I pondered what to do, I looked down at Rondo, the most territorial of my 130-pound behemoths, and thought about him patrolling my big back yard, driving off every intruder from foraging deer to our neighborhood’s most efficient killer, a friend’s predatory cat.

And then I knew. The serial killer in that first paragraph—which I kept as the opening of the novel—was a feral tomcat who always deposited its daily kill on Mulligan’s back porch.

To deter the killer Mulligan dubbed “Cat the Ripper,” he would need a dog. A big one. So he rescued a young Bernese Mountain dog named Brady at a local animal shelter and set him loose I the yard.

I figured that would do the trick, but the dog and the cat didn’t see it that way. When the two animals first encountered each other early one morning, Brady tried to make friends, got scratched on the face for his trouble, and immediately became terrified of the intruder.

Meanwhile, Mulligan had bigger things to worry about—the things that emerged as the main plot and sub-plots of the novel. He became obsessed with a baffling jewelry robbery. He was enraged that someone in town was kidnapping and torturing family pets. And all of this—including his vendetta with Cat the Ripper—kept distracting him from a big case that needed all of his attention.

The New England Patriots, still reeling from a double murder charge against one of their star players (true story) hired Mulligan (not a true story) to conduct a background check on a college star they were thinking of drafting. To all appearances, the player was a choirboy, so at first the case seemed routine. But as soon as he started asking questions, he got push-back. The player had a secret, and somebody was willing to kill to prevent it from being revealed.

The detective work kept Mulligan away from home for long hours, and one day he returned to find that Brady had shredded his couch, tossing stuffing all over the place. (The real Brady had never done anything like that, but the real Rondo had.) Mulligan did a little research about destructive dogs and learned that it was usually the result of separation anxiety. The solution—another dog to keep Brady company. Enter Rondo, another rescue from the local kennel.

As I sat at my keyboard day after day, Mulligan’s two dogs grew inseparable, just as my two big boys did. And soon, their personalities emerged on the page—personalities that corresponded nearly exactly to my real dogs.

Rondo was protective, displaying his suspicion of strangers by barking incessantly at them. Brady was gregarious and affectionate with every one he met. Rondo was eager to please, constantly studying Mulligan for clues about what he should do next. Brady was stubborn and independent, obeying commands to come or stay only when it suited him. Rondo loved to fetch, gleefully chasing tennis balls across the yard and carrying them back to Mulligan. Brady watched the balls sail over his head and tossed Mulligan a look that said, “You expect me to get that?

But the two dogs—both named after New England sports heroes (Tom Brady of the Patriots and Rajon Rondo, formerly of the Boston Celtics—surprised me by becoming integral to the main plot. Both—but especially Rondo—were always on alert for intruders. More than once, their barking alerted Mulligan to the nighttime appearance of bad guys who intended to do him harm.

Cat the Ripper shocked me by playing a larger role too. One day, instead of depositing the corpse of a mouse or a wren on Mulligan’s porch, he showed up clutching a severed human ear in his jaws.

Although The Dread Line marks the first time in the series that Mulligan has lived with a dog, I’ve always included dogs in my novels. Why? Because they are invaluable for developing characters. You can learn a lot about people by the way they treat animals.

Cartoon of the Day: Cats

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Travel with Cara Black: A Week in Paris

A Week in Paris with Cara Black 
November 13 through 19, 2016 
Optional 3-day Extension November 19 through 22, 2016

Ready to pack your bags? Click here for the registration form. 

You’re invited to join Cara and other Cara Black mystery-lovers for an exclusive week in Paris. You’ll spend time with Cara exploring some of the most memorable scenes associated with the cases private investigator Aimée Leduc has solved in several books. And you’ll also have time to spend in some of the small gems of Paris – the lesser-known museums, the spectacular parks, the off-the-beaten- track cafés, the hidden passages that are home to specialty boutiques, antiquarian bookstores and other treasures.

Whether you’ve been to Paris before or not, you’ll get to know the city in a more intimate way. On some days, Cara will lead you to the “scene of the crime” and other settings you’ve read about in the Aimée Leduc series. On other days, you’ll choose from a menu of options that you’d like to do with Donna or Sheila (museums, walking tours, shopping).

Trip leaders Donna Morris of Best Friend in Paris and Sheila Campbell of Wild Blue Yonder, have managed a number of sold-out Paris and Provence experiences, including one last year with Cara, – trips that earn rave reviews from participants. They’ll lead you in small groups, via Metro or city buses, moving about the city like Parisians. You can spend as much time – or as little – with the group as you like.

Donna and Sheila will help you find the things you’re most interested in, and tell you the best way to get there. They function as your friends on the ground, depending on your needs.

Boutique hotel is located in the Paris neighborhood described in Murder in Clichy, in the 8th arrondissement.  Group will meet in the hotel salon each evening with Cara to sample French wines and discuss the days’ events, with a bit of book talk thrown into the mix.

Read more Here.

Cartoon of the Day: Librarian Hell

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Cartoon of the Day: There's No Such Thing as Too Many Books

Crows and Ravens

If you've been to my home, you know I love Ravens. I have ravens everywhere. And, I have many ravens outside in my garden. I also have big crows. Although I've read up on the differences, I can't always tell them apart. Someone (I didn't recognize the email address) sent me this chart recently. It certainly helps. I definitely have ravens in my big trees.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Cartoon of the Day: To Kill a Mockingbird

Murder at the Olympics: Olympic Crime Fiction

The Olympics have played a very important part in crime fiction, and sadly in true crime--the 1972 Munich Olympics where Israeli athletes were massacred. The RapSheet reminded me that I did a post in 2012 on Olympics-related crime fiction novels. Time to update. As always, let me know any titles I've missed.

Murder at the Olympics

Skate Crime and On Think Ice by Alina Adams
Rush for the Gold by Susan Carol Anderson (YA)
Olympic Sleeper by Tom Barling
Echo of the Reich by James Becker
2012 Olympic Sabotage by D.M. Blowers
A Game of Lies by Rebecca Cantrell
Bear Pit by Jon Cleary
Gold by Chris Cleave
No Mark Upon Her by Deborah Crombie
Typhoon by Charles Cummings
See Delphi and Die by Lindsey Davis
Garden of Beasts by Jeffery Deaver
Rush for the Gold: Mystery at the Olympic Games by John Feinstein (YA)
Beyond Gold by Elaine Forder
Trial Run by Dick Francis
The Blue Fence by Jonathan Hales
Olympic Sacrifice by John Hocutt
Terror-Olympic Size by George L. Hoffman
Flight from Berlin by David John
March Violets, If the Dead Rise Not by Phillip Kerr
Going for the Gold by Emma Lathen
Golden Girl by Peter Lear (Peter Lovesey) 
Olympia '36 by John Lee
The Bomber by Liza Marklund
The Runner by Peter May
One or the Other by John McFetridge
Dragon Games by Stephen Mertz
An Olympic Death; Off Side by Manuel Vazquez Montalban
Olympic Nemesis by James Morley
A Medal of Honor by John Morton
A Private Business by Barbara Nadel
The Judas Goat; Carol Heiss Olympic Queen by Robert B. Parker
Target America: Terror at the 2002 Olympics by Frederick W. Parkins
See How They Run by James Patterson 
Private Games by James Patterson and Mark Sullivan
Death Spiral by Meredith Phillips
Olympic Fusion by Scott Pickard
The Runner by Christopher Reich
Hartliss Protector (Assignment: Prince William at the Olympics) by Mike Scantlebury
Black Rain by David Shone
The Eighth Day by Alistair Smith
Rogue Agent by Sean Sweeney
Lestrade and the Deadly Game by M.J. Trow
Summer Games: An Olympic Murder Mystery by Sabrina Wylly