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At the Library: Fiction for fall weather at the Captiva Memorial Library

By Staff | Oct 7, 2015

“Whatever Happened to Molly Bloom”

by Jessica Stirling

“This finely crafted historical mystery, using several recognizable characters and the famous setting from James Joyce’s Ulysses, marks an intriguing departure for saga writer Jessica Stirling. Detective Inspector Jim Kinsella of the Dublin police force is called to the scene when the body of Molly Bloom has been found in her own kitchen where she has been beaten to death with a teapot. Although her husband, Leopold Bloom, is immediately taken into custody without a convincing alibi, Kinsella begins to have his doubts and suspicion falls upon Molly’s fellow singer and alleged lover, Hugh ‘Blazes’ Boylan. Kinsella, aided by his colleague, Inspector Tom Machin, probes the conflicting stories of Bloom and Boylan. Were the pair seen fighting outside a brothel the night of Molly’s murder? And what of the unusual scent, imported from America and found on a cotton ball beneath the Blooms’ bed, that Kinsella hopes will lead him to Leopold’s own dirty little secret? Kinsella is determined to ensure the wrong man doesn’t end up behind bars, and, in seeking the truth, stumbles upon more than he bargained for” *

“Devils and Dust: a Jack Keller novel”

by J.D. Rhoads

“You bring death, the voice said, and Hell follows with you. Relentless bounty hunter Jack Keller returns in ‘Devils and Dust,’ the long-awaited fourth installment of the critically acclaimed series from award-nominated author J. D. Rhoades. Keller’s been in exile, living a quiet life in the desert, since his disappearance after the cataclysmic events of 2008’s award-winning ‘Safe and Sound.’ Now his old friend and former employer Angela has tracked him down and needs his help. Oscar Sanchez, Angela’s husband and Keller’s best friend, has disappeared while investigating what happened to the sons he was trying to bring to America. If anyone can find Oscar, Keller can, but along the way he has to confront his own demons and his unresolved feelings for Angela – now his best friend’s wife. Keller’s quest takes him from a corrupt Mexican border town to a prison camp in the swamps of South Carolina and pits him against human traffickers, violent drug lords, and a vicious group of white supremacists perpetuating an evil as old as civilization itself in the name of God. All of them are about to learn a hard lesson: if Jack Keller’s after you, he’s bringing Hell with him.” *

“Dreamless”

by Jorgen Brekke

“A promising young singer is found dead in a clearing in a forest, gruesomely murdered–her larynx cut out, and an antique music box placed carefully atop her body, playing a mysterious lullaby that sounds familiar, but that no one can quite place. Chief Inspector Odd Singsaker, of the Trondheim Police Department, still recovering from brain surgery, is called in to investigate. Singsaker, now married to Felicia Stone, the American detective he met while tracking down a serial killer, fears the worst when another young girl, also known for her melodic singing voice, suddenly goes missing while on a walk with her dog one night. As the Trondheim police follow the trail of this deadly killer, it becomes clear that both cases are somehow connected to a centuries-old ballad called “The Golden Peace,” written by a mysterious composer called Jon Blund, in the 17th century. This lullaby promises the most sound, sweet sleep to the listener–and as time ticks by, the elusive killer seems as if he will stop at nothing to get his hands on this perfect lullaby.” *

“Satan’s Lullaby”

by Priscilla Royal

“It is the autumn of 1278. The harvest is in. The air is crisp. Dusty summer breathes a last sigh before the dark seasons arrive. For Prioress Eleanor, dark times arrive early in Norfolk. The head of her order, Abbess Isabeau, has sent Father Etienne Davoir from its headquarters in France to inspect all aspects of Tyndal Priory from its morals to its roofs. Surely the Abbess would not have chosen her own brother for this rare and thorough investigation unless the cause was serious and she had reason to fear intervention from Rome. Prioress Eleanor knows something is terribly amiss. The situation turns calamitous when Davoir’s sick clerk dies from a potion sent by Sister Anne, Tyndale’s sub-infirmarian. Is Sister Anne guilty of simple incompetence or murder? Or, Davoir asks, did Prioress Eleanor order the death to frighten him away before he discovered the truth behind accusations she is unfit for her position? When Davoir himself is threatened, the priest roars for justice. Even expectant father Crowner Ralf, the local representative of the king’s justice, has lost all objectivity. The most likely suspects are Anne, the woman Ralf once loved, the prioress he respects, and the Tyndal monk, Thomas, who is his closest friend. Who among the French and English assembled at Tyndal has succumbed to Satan’s lullaby?” *

“Dorothy Parker Drank Here”

by Ellen Meister

“Heavenly peace? No, thank you. Dorothy Parker would rather wander the famous halls of the Algonquin Hotel, drink in hand, searching for someone, anyone, who will keep her company on this side of eternity. After forty years she thinks she’s found the perfect candidate in Ted Shriver, a brilliant literary voice of the 1970s, silenced early in a promising career by a devastating plagiarism scandal. Now a prickly recluse, he hides away in the old hotel slowly dying of cancer, which he refuses to treat. If she can just convince him to sign the infamous guestbook of Percy Coates, Dorothy Parker might be able to persuade the jaded writer to spurn the white light with her. Ted, however, might be the only person living or dead who’s more stubborn than Parker, and he rejects her proposal outright. When a young, ambitious TV producer, Norah Wolfe, enters the hotel in search of Ted Shriver, Parker sees another opportunity to get what she wants. Instead, she and Norah manage to uncover such startling secrets about Ted’s past that the future changes for all of them.” *

“The Sex Lives

of Siamese Twins”

by Irvine Welsh

“The famed-some would say notorious-author of Trainspotting and many other brilliant offenses against common literary decency comes at last to America, with a dark and twisted tale of personal training and abject codependency in the fading glitter of Miami’s South Beach, with a novel that asks the provocative question: Why would you want to be “the Biggest Loser” anyway? When Lucy Brennan, a Miami Beach personal-fitness trainer, disarms an apparently crazed gunman chasing two frightened homeless men along a deserted causeway at night, the police and the breaking-news cameras are not far behind. Within hours, Lucy becomes a hero. Her celebrity is short-lived, though: the “crazed gunman,” turns out to be a victim of child sexual abuse and the two men are serial pedophiles. The solitary eye-witness, the depressed and overweight Lena Sorenson, thrilled by Lucy’s heroism and decisiveness, becomes obsessed with the trainer and enrolls as a client at her Bodysculpt gym. It quickly becomes clear that Lena is more interested in Lucy’s body than her own. Then, when one of the pedophiles she allowed to escape carries out a heinous sex attack, Lucy’s transition from hero to villain is complete. When Lucy imprisons Lena, and can’t stop thinking about the sex lives of Siamese twins, the real problems start. In Lucy and Lena, Irvine Welsh has created two of his most memorable female protagonists, and one of the most bizarre, sadomasochistic folie deux in contemporary fiction. ‘The Sex Lives of Siamese Twins’ taps into two great obsessions of our time-how we look and where we live-and tells a story so subversive and dark it blacks out the Florida sun.” *

“The Missing One”

by Lucy Atkins

“In her gripping debut novel, Lucy Atkins takes us on one woman’s journey to the beautiful and rugged Pacific Northwest to discover the dark secrets of her family’s past so that she can understand and accept herself. Kal McKenzie was never close to her mother Elena, whose coldness towards her spoiled any chance of a good relationship. When Elena dies of cancer, Kal feels forlorn: how do you mourn a mother who, inexplicably, just didn’t seem to love you? While clearing out Elena’s art studio, Kal finds a drawer packed with postcards, each bearing an identical one-line message from a Canadian gallery owner named Susannah Gillespie: “Thinking of you.” Who is this woman and might she hold the key to her ruined relationship with her mother? Conflicted by her grief and shaken up from recently seeing a covetous text from an old girlfriend on her husband’s cell phone, Kal impulsively sets off with her toddler Finn to Susannah’s home on a remote British Columbian island, a place of killer whales and storms. Soon Kal quickly realizes she has made a big mistake. The striking and enigmatic Susannah will only share a few scraps of information about Elena. Kal discovers that her mother was a pioneering orca researcher-an activist trying to save the powerful and dangerous creatures.” *

* Book jacket/publisher description

-Senior Librarian Ann Bradley is branch manager Captiva Memorial Library.