The Keeper of Lost Causes by Jussi Adler-Olsen


As a mystery reader and audiobook fan, I love it when both combine to create the perfect literary experience. The Keeper of Lost Causes, and other works by Jussi Adler-Olsen, are available in four formats but I highly recommend the audio narrated by Erik Davies. The Keeper of Lost Causes introduces Carl Morck, a crusty Danish cop who’s recovering from a brutal shootout  that has left one of his partners dead and the other paralyzed. Unpopular with his peers, Carl is assigned to lead the newly created Department Q in Copenhagen to work on cold cases. There he battles his superiors, his guilt, personal life, and the complex, years-old case involving the disappearance of a young female politician.

All the characters, from the victim to Morck and his quirky team, quickly develop into people you want to know more about. None disappoint as they lead you through a satisfying plot to a knuckle-whitening conclusion. The great news is that there are more titles in this series, all equally as enthralling. (Submitted by Pippa)

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Blind Sight by Carol O’Connell

Image result for blindsight by carol o'connell

The main character in this story is Kathy Mallory, who prefers to be known as Mallory, a highly intelligent police detective in New York. She grew up on the streets and is not only street savvy but her high IQ leads her to solving crimes in a unique and sometimes “off the books” type of way. The latest case is that of a possible serial killer who has, perhaps inadvertently, kidnapped a witness, only to find that the witness, a young boy, was blind.  Jonah, the kidnap victim shows us that being blind doesn’t mean you miss out on what life has to offer. Smells, touch, sense (wind, heat, taste) all contribute to a very vivid circumstance that Jonah is determined to overcome. What is the kidnapper/killer to do with him?  Will Mallory find the boy alive or dead? As more and more secrets are revealed, from the rich to the poor, the politically mighty to the Catholic church, Mallory and the New York police are racing against time.   A well-written interwoven tale that keeps you guessing page turn after page turn. (Submitted by Jamie).

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Reeva: A Mother’s Story by June Steenkamp

In 2012, during the London Olympics, the Blade Runner Oscar Pistorius inspired the world by becoming the first para-athlete to compete in both Paralympic and Olympic Games as a sprinter. Several months later he made the news headlines again, this time for fatally shooting his model girlfriend of three months, Reeva Steemkamp, in the middle of the night in his posh Pretoria villa.

Reeva’s mother, June Steenkamp, wrote this fascinating memoir describing the long months after she received the phone call that her beautiful, youngest daughter had been killed. In this painfully honest and unflinching account of Reeva’s life, she talks about Reeva’s wonderful childhood and what really went on in her mind as she sat in the packed Pretoria court room day after day and how she is coping in the aftermath of the verdict. Reeva is an amazing and very well written true insider’s account of this tragic story. (Submitted by Monika).

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A Mother’s Reckoning: Living in the aftermath of tragedy by Sue Klebold

Sue Klebold is the mother of Dylan Klebold, one of the two shooters at Columbine High School in 1999 who killed 13 people before ending their own lives, a tragedy that saddened and galvanized the nation. She has spent the last 15 years excavating every detail of her family life, and trying to understand the crucial intersection between mental health problems and violence. Instead of becoming paralyzed by her grief and remorse, she has become a passionate and effective agent working tirelessly to advance mental health awareness and intervention.” ~ Penguin Random House

Whew, I’m glad I’ve finished this book, though it has stayed with me for days, just as the Columbine tragedy did. Sue Klebold is a very brave woman who has salvaged what could have been a wasted life spent in despair and hopelessness. She has spent the years since the horror of April 1999 trying to deal with PTSD, while struggling through life with her remaining son and husband. She has devoted herself to understanding and promoting the necessity for researching brain health, and, without excusing him, tried to understand what happened to her son. (Submitted by SB).

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The Dead Don’t Dream by Mauro Azzano

In The Dead Don’t Dream by Mauro Azzano, we meet homicide police detective Ian McBriar and his partner Frank Burghezian in 1973, Toronto. When two young boys are chased into the path of an oncoming train by a threatening man, McBriar and Burghezian are tasked with tracking down the suspect. They soon discover a web of lies that connects to a murder in Italy and the local underworld.

I enjoyed reading this historical mystery which was rife with the attitudes and prejudices of the 1970s. In addition to the crime-solving, Azzano introduced a romantic subplot in which Ian meets a young single-mother, Karen, and her adorable son Ethan. I’m curious to find out what happens to Ian McBriar and his crew in the sequels, Death Works at Night and Death by Deceit. (Submitted by MS).

Meet Mauro at Authors Among Us-The Dark Side: The Craft of Writing about Death, Demons, and Despair at Guildford Library on Wed, Oct 7 from 6:30-8:30pm. Call 604-598-7366 to save your spot.

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Waking the Witch by Kelley Armstrong

With her guardians on vacation, Savannah, a young witch, is minding the detective agency on her own. She’s not to take any unnecessary risks, but can’t pass up the opportunity to take the lead on a case of ritualistic murder. As the body count rises, Savannah is put to the test and the case almost proves too much to handle.  The story is an enjoyable blend of urban fantasy and mystery with a touch of romantic tension. Kelley Armstrong does a good job of introducing a new view point into her Women of the Otherworld series. (Submitted by Courtney)

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