Several promising books from Northwest crime novelists are new this month.
A.J. Banner’s latest sharply written and taut psychological thriller “The Poison Garden” (Lake Union, $24.95) follows “The Good Neighbor” and “After Nightfall” (among others) with the story of Elise Watters, the well-off owner of a small business on (fictional) Chinook Island in the San Juans, who discovers that her physician husband is (a) cheating on her, (b) massively in debt and (c) possibly planning to kill her. Even worse: She may be framed for murder.
Martin Limón’s “G.I. Confidential” (Soho, $26.95) is the newest addition to his robust, socially alert and perceptive series about George Sueño and Ernie Bascom, two Army investigators stationed in South Korea in the 1970s. A tenacious reporter joins them as they probe a series of vicious bank robberies apparently carried out by G.I.s. The trio uncovers a tangle of corruption, black market, sex exploitation and official cover-ups, while narrator Sueño’s love for Korea — and one woman in particular — deepens.
Martin Limón will appear at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 30, Third Place Books, 17171 Bothell Way N.E., Lake Forest Park, 206-366-3333, thirdplacebooks.com
Marty Wingate’s “The Bodies in the Library” (Berkley, $26) takes place far from her native Seattle in England, also the setting for the prolific author’s many other charming books. This cozy mystery introduces Hayley Burke, the newly minted curator of The First Edition Society, a posh but stuffy library in Bath dedicated to classic Golden Age mysteries. In the library’s stacks, Hayley uncovers the body of a (now late) member of a pugnacious gang of Agatha Christie superfans. The event grabs the attention of local tabloids, as well as a cranky board of directors and the grasping nephew of the library’s founder.
Marty Wingate will appear at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 8, Third Place Books, 17171 Bothell Way N.E., Lake Forest Park, 206-366-3333, thirdplacebooks.com
Ellie Alexander’s “Beyond a Reasonable Stout” (Minotaur, $26.99) also takes the lighthearted cozy route — in this case, as the title implies, revolving around booze instead of rare books. Leavenworth — that Bavarian-styled, tourist-dependent village up there in the mountains — is aflutter after the murder of a much-disliked city councilman who had been lobbying to — yikes! — turn the town dry. Sloan Krause, the amateur sleuth of this highly amiable series, sets out to clear the name of the crime’s prime suspect.