Tuesday, March 30, 2010

New Signed Books at the Poisoned Pen Bookstore

Mosley, Walter. Known to Evil ($27) Signed

The Walter Mosley and his new hero, Leonid McGill, are back in the new New York Times-bestselling mystery series that's already being hailed as a classic of contemporary noir.

Leonid McGill-the protagonist introduced in The Long Fall, the book that returned Walter Mosley to bestseller lists nationwide -is still fighting to stick to his reformed ways while the world around him pulls him in every other direction. He has split up with his girlfriend, Aura, because his new self won't let him leave his wife-but then Aura's new boyfriend starts angling to get Leonid kicked out of his prime, top-of-the­skyscraper office space. Meanwhile, one of his sons seems to have found true love-but the girl has a shady past that's all of sudden threatening the whole McGill family-and his other son, the charming rogue Twilliam, is doing nothing but enabling the crisis.

Most ominously of all, Alfonse Rinaldo, the mysterious power-behind- the-throne at City Hall, the fixer who seems to control every little thing that happens in New York City, has a problem that even he can't fix- and he's come to Leonid for help. It seems a young woman has disappeared, leaving murder in her wake, and it means everything to Rinaldo to track her down. But he won't tell McGill his motives, which doesn't quite square with the new company policy- but turning down Rinaldo is almost impossible to even contemplate.

Known to Evil delivers on all the promise of the characters and story lines introduced in The Long Fall, and then some. It careens fast and deep into gritty, glittery contemporary Manhattan, making the city pulse in a whole new way, and it firmly establishes Leonid McGill as one of the mystery world's most iconic, charismatic leading men.

Nesbo, Jo. The Devil's Star($28) Signed

Starred Review from
PW, "A serial killer taunts Harry Hole in Nesbø's searing third crime novel to feature the Oslo police detective to be made available in the U.S. (after Nemesis). Still suffering from alcohol-fueled demons and obsessed with hunting for evidence against a clearly dirty cop, Hole grudgingly agrees to help look into the murder of a woman whose finger has been amputated and a red diamond stuck under her eyelid. More bodies follow, with the murderer leaving identical five-pointed diamonds (the titular devil's star) at each crime scene. At first the killings appear to be random, but Hole soon discovers an ominous pattern. Nesbø brilliantly incorporates threads from earlier novels, including Hole's often tumultuous relationship with his lover, Rakel, without ever losing the current story's rhythm. Even with—or perhaps because of—his flaws, Hole is arguably one of today's most fascinating fictional detectives.

*Starred Review* from Booklist, "When we last saw Harry Hole, the Oslo police inspector was on the wagon and living with his lover, Rakel, and her young son, Oleg. A normal life seemed possible, at least if he could let go of his obsession with proving that fellow cop Tom Waaler was responsible for the death of Harry’s partner (Nemesis, 2009). He couldn’t let go, however, and by the time this third installment in Nesbø’s riveting series begins, Harry is living alone, back on the booze, and on the verge of being fired. Then, as happened in The Redbreast (2007), the first in the series, a new case brings the drunken detective out of the doldrums. This time it’s a serial killer who appears to be preying on random victims across the city. But are they random? Or do the pentagrams (the “devil’s star”) found at or near the crime sites somehow connect the victims? Nesbo’s plot this time, although multifaceted, is not as complex as in the earlier novels, lacking, in particular, the intricate linking of past to present that distinguished The Redbreast, but the tortured hero, fighting and mostly losing the battle with his personal demons, is even more richly developed, and the deadly pas de deux between Hole and Waaler plays itself out to a stunning conclusion. The similarity between Hole and Ian Rankin’s equally tormented John Rebus is ever present this time, but Hole may well be the more affecting character, alternately brilliant and deeply flawed, trapped between his obsessions and the seemingly impossible goal of protecting those he loves. Put Nesbø at the top of the Scandinavian crime-fiction ladder, right along with Henning Mankell and Stieg Larsson.

Tallman, Shirley. Scandal on Rincon Hill ($27) Signed

“Bringing Victorian San Francisco to colorful life, Tallman offers an entertaining mystery…will appeal to fans of Anne Perry and Rhys Bowen.” —Library Journal A body is found just blocks from attorney Sarah Woolson’s home on Rincon Hill. Sarah is on the case, but 19th-century San Francisco is soon thrown into a state of panic as a gr
uesome crime spree begins to take hold of the city.

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