Skeleton Dance – Aaron Elkins
Fiction , Mystery / February 22, 2017

Aaron Elkins has authored an incredible novel, one that reveals the inner sanctum of the people who spend decades educating themselves and others on where Neanderthals stand in the tree of life,.with Skeleton Dance, published by HarperCollins Publishers, copyright 2000.   Paleontologists love to argue.  Mostly about whether there should be an “h” in the name of the bipedal species Neanderthal.  Many contend that homo-sapiens annihilated the species for the availability of grains, fruit, and meat.  Others contend that there is genetic proof of cross-breeding with the species and that many were murdered with weapons more sophisticated than those we believe Neanderthals had developed at the time.   When a man’s always faithful dog starts bringing home bones that appear to be human, he goes to the police.  He lives in northern France and it is not so unusual to find human bones left from two world wars, a revolution, and the many caves early man inhabited, in the surrounding area.  Local police inspector Lucien Anatole Joly suspects that these are not old bones and has one of his officers follow the dog to the source.  He discovers that the dog is removing these bones from a cave not far from its…

One Good Turn – Kate Atkinson
Crime Thriller , Fiction , Hardboiled / February 18, 2017

Kate Atkinson’s private investigator hero, Jackson Brodie, returns in the enticing adventure One Good Turn, published by Little, Brown and Company, copyright 2006.   Jackson Brodie is on the scene when a small car accident occurs and the automobile owners are sent into a case of extreme road rage.  One of the drivers brings  a baseball bat out of his car and hits the other driver on his temple, knocking him unconscious.  Brodie comes to the aid of this unfortunate man and accompanies him to the hospital.  The hospital staff releases this man, a writer named Paul Bradley, into Brodie’s custody with a warning that he should be watched closely and given plenty of rest.   Brodie, who is an ex-cop, ex-private detective, and recently, through one of his client’s generous compensations, a millionaire, takes care of this unfortunate victim of senseless violence.  As a rule Brodie no longer involved himself in other peoples’ affairs as he himself had much to deal with now that he was an unemployed millionaire and he wanted to find a compatible caring woman to spend his life with. Yet for some reason he felt compelled to see to the well being of this beaten up man.  This…

No Shred of Evidence – Charles Todd
Fiction , Historical , Mystery , Suspense / February 10, 2017

Charles Todd continues his thrilling sequence of Ian Rutledge mystery novels with No Shred of Evidence, published by HarperCollins Publishers, copyright 2016. Ian Rutledge is an inspector for Scotland Yard.  In the summer of 1914 he was engaged to be married to Jean Gordon.  Five years later he released her from that promise after he’d seen the shock and horror in her eyes as she looked at the shell of a man who had returned from France and been in the hospital for months with some undisclosed affliction.  Rutledge broke that proposal because he knew that his injury was not one that a woman should have to live with.  More of a psychological disability, his condition plagued him in most of his personal thoughts and his reasoning on the job, and yet it helped him to see sides of the crimes he investigated that would not be perceived by most detectives.  This so-called affliction would haunt him for the rest of his life and affect any relationships he had, whether they were professional or personal.  He would always be challenged with having to deal with what his duty was to do in the First World War. So he decided to…

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