Search This Blog

Friday, December 09, 2016

Three January Releases

Modern Crimes by Chris Nickson

Although the Women Police Service was founded in 1914 to deal mainly with pimps and prostitution, the founders of the WPS took advantage of the war situation by replacing men who were involved with the war effort in the hope that women could continue advancing after the war.  

 Female officers were allowed to go into brothels, nightclubs and betting houses to observe and gather evidence of untoward behavior, but at the first sign of crime being committed, they had to call in male colleagues. They were not allowed to carry handcuffs unless instructed to by a senior officer, and were not allowed to make arrests until 1923.  (source)

The novel takes place in 1924 in Leeds.  WPC Lottie Armstrong and her partner WPC Cathy Taylor are eager to take on larger policing roles, but must deal with the prejudices of many men on the force.   Lottie's ability to talk to people results in good information, and DS McMillan values her assistance, but not everyone appreciates a woman exceeding her prescribed role.

I enjoyed doing a little more research on women in the police at that time period in the UK.


NetGalley/Trafalgar Square Publishing.

Mystery/Police Procedural.  Jan. 1, 2017.  Print length: 288 pages.

Blood and Bone is the third entry (but the first I've read) in Giambanco's Alice Madison series set in Seattle.  

Alice and her partner Detective Sergeant Kevin Brown find themselves on a case that has some crossover with one of the previous books.  A bit complicated at times between two story lines.  Not bad, but could have used either a bit more back story and/or fewer complications.

Read in September


Crime/Police Procedural.  Jan. 3, 2017.  Print length:  384 pages.


To  Clear the Air

First an old man from the small German village of Merklen is murdered, then another.  Clearly there is a connection to a decades old crime, but no one in the small village is much inclined to talk about it.  Inspector Peter Bohm needs to prevent another murder, but in order to do so, he needs information that the villagers are reluctant to provide. Someone is seeking revenge...or justice.

To complicate matters, Peter's marriage is unsettled.  His wife left town to attend a conference, then decides to stay away to give some thought to her situation.    

To Clear the Air was Borrman's debut novel, and she has written two, but I don't know how many have been translated.
"She [Borrmann] has been a full-time writer since 2001, and To Clear the Air was her first novel. Silence, her third, won the Deutscher Krimi Preis in 2012 for best crime novel and was nominated for the Friedrich Glauser Prize."
Read in November

NetGalley/Amazon Crossing

Crime/Police Procedural. Jan. 24, 2017.  Print length:  242 pages.


  1. That's interesting about female police officers. The other two books sound intriguing too!

    1. Although women in the police (and other careers) have come a long way, they still battle prejudice. Lottie's friend Cathy comments about even though women have gained the vote by 1924--they have to be thirty in order to do so!

  2. I like your blog so much because you don't always read the popular, hyped books and I pick up new mysteries (my favorite genre) to check out! Thank you and wish you had enjoyed them a little more.

  3. I might be interested in the German book. I'm not aware of many mysteries set there.

    1. To Clear the Air was an interesting mystery. The darkness in it was balanced by Peter Bohm's character and his love for his wife.

  4. I think I would love Modern Crimes. I love its tie to real life history. The other two sound good as well. Especially To Clear the Air.

    1. You are reading a similar series about the first women in policing set in the states, aren't you Wendy?