Year in Review: Mystery & Suspense Novels of 2007

Here are the mystery novels I read last year – the good and the bad with my comments. Some were probably not published in 2007. The only mystery that stood out for me was Karin Slaughter’s entry in her popular Grant County series with an ending that ended my enjoyment of the series.

  • Exit Music by Ian Rankin, c2007, the last DI Rebus book–maybe. Solidly written and plotted. Only available in the UK if I am not mistaken.
  • Beyond Reach by Karin Slaughter, c2007 – another captivating read in the Grant County series with an unbelievable ending that I am still recovering from that has ended my enjoyment of the series
  • Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane, c2003 – excellent psychological thriller that I just could not put down, truly a page-turner
  • The Bone Garden by Tess Gerritsen, c2007 – good historical mystery told in dual time period of past and present with a tragic ending
  • Dearly, Devoted Dexter by Jeff Lindsay, c2005 – very quick read featuring anti-hero Dexter Morgan, a serial killer who targets the scum of the earth, who you can’t help but like
  • Mark of the Lion by Suzanne Arruda, c2007 – very good historical mystery featuring larger than life Jade del Cameron. The sequel is already out (and reserved at my local library)
  • Heartsick by Chelsea Cain, c2007 – Ms. Cain’s debut novel was a mixed bag for me. It features the serial killer slash damaged cop storyline. The hero in here really stood out for me.
  • Play Dirty by Sandra Brown, c2007 – I’m a Sandra Brown whore. Love her books despite the flaws. Her stories are often riddled with unlikable characters and implausibilities but I enjoyed her latest novel and look forward to reading her next novel, Smoke Screen, this fall.
  • Die for Me by Karen Rose, c2007 – Ms. Rose is an author who gets better with each successive book. I am a fan.

[tags]Year of Review 2007, Mystery Novels, Suspense Novels[/tags]

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About Keishon

Voracious reader of just about everything.
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7 Responses to Year in Review: Mystery & Suspense Novels of 2007

  1. jenreads says:

    I understand your disgust with Karin Slaughter for “Beyond Reach” (an excellent book despite the ending), but I can also understand where she is coming from. Elizabeth George did a similar thing in her last Lynley/Havers book. She has written an excellent essay on her reasoning. It’s worth reading, if you haven’t already, just to see what it takes to keep an ongoing series from becoming stagnant for the author and reader. You can find it on her website: http://www.elizabethgeorgeonline.com/messages_from_author.htm

  2. Jan says:

    I used to read lots of mysteries, but had almost completely stopped reading them. However, in 2007 I found some new mystery authors and some old favorites again. I have especially enjoyed the historical mystery authors I discovered (Victoria Thompson, Rhys Bowen, C. S. Harris and Tasha Alexander). They all feature on-going characters from book-to-book and I enjoy the developing relationships between characters. The history is fun to read about, too!

  3. Avid Reader says:

    Excellent essay and no I hadn’t read it. Thanks for sharing this, Jen. I am going to contradict myself here because I do complain often about series that remain “stagnant” or as Ms. George says, the characters lives stay “frozen” in time and place. As other readers in the Slaughter thread have said often, good people die all the time. But I read to escape the harsh realities of life. I had grown so attached to that character that what she did was such a betrayal to me. Inside, I knew that Ms. Slaughter felt she needed to change things and reading her letter didn’t make matters any better either. In the end, however, I do want authors to create characters that grow and change over time and I realize that when reading outside the romance genre, death is apart of the “change”. So, this article has given me some insight into what the “author” is faced with when creating an ongoing series. Slaughter, I think is a different kettle of fish. She did it more for the “shock value” and that is her right to do so. Overall, I just didn’t like how she handled it.

  4. vanessa jaye says:

    Mark of the Lion sounds interesting. I’ll have to check out more info on Amazon.

    Jan I’m loving historical mysteries also. Presently I’m in the middle of Deanna Raybourn’s “Silent in the Sanctuary”, it’s actually the second book in the Lady Julia Grey mystery series, but the first one I’ve read. I’ll be picking up book 1 after this. I really enjoyed the Tash Alexandra book I read and meant to continue with the series, thanks for reminding me.

    I read several of the Elizabeth George books, and glommed a bunch of them that now sit in my tbr pile. I’m reluctant to read them once I heard what she’d done. But maybe that essay will change my mind. (off to read it now).

  5. Avid Reader says:

    Hi Jan, I’ve got Tasha Alexander’s books as well as C.S. Harris’s books in the TBR stacks, just haven’t gotten to them yet. Looking forward to reading them.

    Vanessa, I actually bought the Raybourn title when it first came out but hadn’t read it yet. I’ll have to make that a priority. I didn’t know she had already released a sequel.

    I love historical mysteries and am always looking for new authors in this genre. If you haven’t picked up Ariana Franklin’s medieval mysteries, starting with Mistress of the Art of Death, you should. Check to see if your library has a copy.

  6. Jan says:

    I’ve read a couple other series where main characters died. I felt like a friend had died, but I also realize authors need to do what they feel is right for their books. I still read those authors, but I haven’t read any of Karin Slaughter’s books.

    I haven’t read any by Deanna Raybourn or Ariana Franklin, but they are on my TBR list.

  7. vanessa jaye says:

    Keishon, I think I put Mistress of Death on hold at the library. (must go check on status). Another historical mystery series you might be interested in is Marion Chesney’s Our Lady Pain. Takes place in Edwardian England. I think I picked it up at the second book, and have been meaning to go back read more.

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