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August Picks from Sisters in Crime – World Traveler

By Shari Randall

No vacation time? Armchair travelers, rejoice! Even if your boss won’t let you take a day off, these books will whisk you away to points across the globe. Political intrigue, traditional mystery, technothriller, domestic suspense – take your choice of these stories and grab a first class ticket to a thrill ride from Sisters in Crime.

I’ve asked the authors to tell us a little about their books.

Bon voyage!

Dressed for Death in Burgundy

by Susan C. Shea

Katherine Goff feels she and her rock musician husband have finally been accepted into the small community of Reigny-sur-Canne, deep in Burgundy's agricultural district. But when she and a group of American museum-goers come upon a body in a display at a costume museum in a nearby town, she is caught up again in a whirlwind of local gossip, suspicion, and fear. When her young British neighbor becomes a suspect, the two women team up to find the real killer. However, the more clues they find, the more the killer wants them off the trail.

Dressed for Death in Burgundy is a trip into a part of France less visited in fiction and it looks at what draws ex-pats into - or keeps them out of - provincial French society. There's also a cool museum inspired by a very real and delightful one in this part of Burgundy. – Susan C. Shea

Visit the Author's Website.

Death in Istanbul

by Maria Hudgins

History professor Dotsy Lamb is excited to explore Istanbul with her best friend, Lettie Osgood. The two are even planning to meet up with Dotsy's boyfriend, Italian policeman Marco, who's on a secret mission for the Carabinieri. But their vacation takes a sharp turn down a dangerous street when someone nabs Lettie at the airport, mistaking her for Dotsy.

Death in Istanbul deals with international theft, travel in Turkey, and exploration of Istanbul, one of the world's most intriguing cities. It is based on the author's two tours of the country. Plus, it's a cracking good mystery with a car chase through the streets of the city that straddles two continents. – Maria Hudgins

Click for a Discussion Guide.

Visit the Author's Website.

A Blind Eye

by Jane Gorman

Visiting his family's homeland, Philadelphia police detective Adam Kaminski's been warned by his superiors to be on his best behavior. But when Adam meets a Polish cousin who believes his daughter was murdered, Adam is troubled by the indifference of the police… and by the strange behavior of the delegation's Polish liaison. Adam begins uncovering clues that point to the killer, clues that lead him inexorably into an investigation of the intricate web of Polish politics and the legacy of the Secret Police. But the past isn't always black and white, as Adam is forced to accept as he learns more about the killer and about his own family legacy. Will looking into the murder only beget more murder?

A Blind Eye encourages readers to consider what actions are acceptable - and what actions are beyond the pale - when someone finds themselves in a politically trying or even dangerous situation. From how Poles fought against their suppression during the Soviet years to how people today must deal with the consequences of those actions, at some point we all find ourselves faced with difficult choices. This book deals with the themes of power and corruption, how we define justice and making choices. – Jane Gorman

Additional information for readers

Visit the Author's Website.

Blood Lake

by Kenneth Wishnia

The Ecuadorian Andes is one of the few places on earth where you can get a sunburn and freeze to death at the same time. When New York City P.I. Filomena Buscarsela takes her teenaged daughter, Antonia, to see their extended family in Ecuador, it’s more than a homecoming. Filomena hasn’t been back in years, and the trip brings back memories of her previous life there as a revolutionary. Strangest of all, people keep asking her if her lover—who died in a hail of police gunfire in front of her very eyes—is alive.

Before she’s even had time to adjust to her new surroundings, a priest is murdered, a man who, years ago, saved her life and helped her escape to the U.S. She owed him her life; now it’s time for the debt to be repaid, and she vows to find his killer. At first, the murder seems to be part of a particularly brutal and corrupt political campaign, but it soon becomes clear that the crime has international implications, as Filomena uncovers a web of intrigue that threatens to expose a presidential assassination plot.

Don't be put off by the blood-red cover: there really is a place in Ecuador called Yahuarcocha--Blood Lake--dating from the Inca conquest of the region. Blood Lake describes some of the dangerous and destabilizing conditions that have led to so much migration by Latin American refugees to the United States. The book is also available in Spanish translation: Lago de Sangre. – Kenneth Wishnia

Visit the Author's Website.

Saving Hope

by Liese Sherwood-Fabre

Steve Berry, NYT Bestselling author, describes Saving Hope as “a tantalizing premise that toys with the most basic of emotions—a parent’s drive to save their child.” In one of Siberia's formerly closed cities, Alexandra Pavlova, an unemployed microbiologist, struggles to save her daughter’s life. When she turns to Vladimir, her oldest friend, for help, she's drawn into Russia’s underworld. His business dealings with the Iranians come to the attention of Sergei Borisov, an FSB (formerly the KGB) agent. Alexandra finds herself joining forces with Sergei to stop the export of a deadly virus in a race to save both her daughter and the world.

Saving Hope provides a glimpse into a world unknown by most. Readers return to post-Soviet/post-Chernobyl Russia where ordinary citizens suffered major economic and social upheavals and faced some very difficult choices. In addition to the suspense of Alexandra's efforts to keep a deadly bioweapon from leaving the country, the book examines the concepts of a mother's love, duty to one's country, and the instinct to survive. – Liese Sherwood-Fabre

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Visit the Authors's Website.

Come Home

by Patricia Gussin

Nicole Nelson and Ahmed Masud seem the perfect couple—happily married with a five-year-old son, partners in an elite plastic surgery practice in Philadelphia—until Ahmed, suddenly—with no warning—leaves with their son. Nicole’s search for her child takes her to Egypt, Uruguay, Liberia, and back to Egypt to face an unspeakable tragedy. The blending and disruption of cultures with a child in the middle will propel discussion as a mother searches for her child in the Egypt of Arab Spring amidst international politics and a setting that shifts among three continents. Readers' takes on the catastrophic climax should provide a provocative discussion. – Patricia Gussin

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Visit the Author's Website.

Petra’s Ghost

by C.S. O’Cinneide

A woman has vanished on the Camino de Santiago, the ancient five-hundred-mile pilgrimage that crosses northern Spain. Daniel, an Irish expat, walks the lonely trail carrying his wife, Petra’s, ashes, along with the damning secret of how she really died. After he teams up to walk with clever California girl Ginny, a nightmare figure begins to stalk them, and his mind starts to unravel from the horror of things he cannot explain.

Petra's Ghost examines the cyclical nature of grief and guilt, as well as issues surrounding palliative care and mental illness. The Camino de Santiago is an ancient route that many find fascinating and the book describes the landscape, historical and cultural aspects in detail. A lot to discuss here, with rich characters, humor to lighten the darkness, and more twists than the trail itself. – C.S. O’Cinneide

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Visit the Author's Website.

Deep Waters

by Linda Reid and Deborah Shlian

For centuries, an ancient shipwreck in azure Greek waters has concealed an astonishing truth. The drowning of an underwater cameraman, then the murder of a highly respected academic - seemingly isolated tragedies? When radio talk show host Sammy Greene and ex-cop Gus Pappajohn investigate, they uncover an ancient and modern mystery - conflicts between pagans and saints, archaeologists and treasure hunters. From the marble steps of the Parthenon to the peaks of the hidden monasteries of Mount Athos, the two risk their lives in a desperate race to find a lost chapter of human history.

International thrills, ancient and modern mysteries; conflicts between pagans and saints, archaeologists and treasure hunters; set in the azure seas surrounding Greece and its islands. Reporter Sammy Greene and her ex-cop friend Gus set off on their third adventure in this award-winning thriller series. – Linda Reid

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Visit the Author's Website.

Shari Randall is the Library Liaison for Sisters in Crime. The first in her Lobster Shack Mystery series, CURSES, BOILED AGAIN, won an Agatha Award for Best First Novel.

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