So, who are some my favorite mystery and suspense writers? Well, I’ll tell you! It’s a list that has no specific criteria other than a story that has a crime in it and set in the past or present. The following list is my own personal list of favorite mystery/suspense authors and in no particular order. Please, feel free to share your own favorite mystery/suspense authors.
Michael Connelly – Harry Bosch series, first book is The Black Echo. The series is mainly set in present day Los Angeles, California and mostly told in third person but it does shift to first person later in the series. Harry Bosch has a code he lives by and that is “everybody counts or no one counts.” Or something like that. Next book out in the Harry Bosh series is Nine Dragons, Oct 13, 2009.
Karin Slaughter – her strengths are her rich characterizations and plotting but her books tend to have graphic violence in them so consider yourself warned. She has two series going: the Grant County series set in a fictional town outside Atlanta and the first book is Blindsighted and the Will Trent series set in Atlanta, Ga with the first book being Triptych. I strongly recommend the Will Trent series and her latest just came out this year, Undone, which is a merging of the two series.
Chelsea Cain – has three books out in her Gretchen Lowell and Archie Sheridan series. The stories revolve around the twisted relationship between a damaged cop and a beautiful serial killer. They both play cat and mouse games with each other and Cain delivers on the gore and gives readers plenty to talk about, too. Evil At Heart is coming out Sept 1 and look for a review on the same date. The first book in the series is Heartsick.
Ken Bruen – his noir style and Ireland setting along with his economical prose style has led me to enjoy three of his novels in the Jack Taylor series. The first book that introduced him was The Guards. The antihero, Jack, is an ex-cop who is an alcoholic. He also has issues with authority. The series is suffused with black humor along with insights into people and society. Did I mention that Jack Taylor is a reader? He quotes a lot of his favorite writers. Excellent series thus far. I’m at book #4 in this series and the latest just recently came out, Sanctuary.
Julia Spencer-Fleming – she’s not really crime fiction per se but more of what mystery readers term “cozy” because it’s the characters and the interpersonal relationships that drive the stories. The first book in the series, In the Bleak Midwinter, blew me away when it first came out. The next book in the series, One Was A Soldier, is due out April 2010. Yep, that’s a long time to wait but I’m sure it’ll be worth it.
Jo Nesbo – This Scandinavian author is one that I just discovered this year and have enjoyed two of his books in his Harry Hole series. The English versions of this books are incomplete but what is available is Redbreast and Nemesis and the other two: The Devil’s Star and The Redeemer are also available used. Anyway, look for a review of The Devil’s Star.
Ariana Franklin – her Mistress of the Art of Death series set during the 12th Century is really taking off. The first book that introduced her was Mistress of the Art of Death. This author is a solid writer having read her as Diana Norman a few years ago. I am thrilled that her medieval mystery series is taking shape and readers are enjoying them. Next book due out is, A Murderous Procession, tentatively scheduled for April 2010.