Book picks similar to
The River Bride by Nadine Doolittle


mystery
canadian-literature
contemporary
mystery-thriller

Where Ravens Roost


Karin Nordin - 2021
    As it dug its hooked beak into the mess of dried grass and twigs that made up its nest, a shiny glimmer reflected off a low-hanging bulb. Kjeld edged closer to get a better look. It was a human tooth. With a silver filling.Detective Kjeld Nygaard wants nothing more than to forget his family and Varsund, the small mining town he once called home, even exist. But while on suspension after his last case went disastrously wrong, his estranged father Stenar leaves a message on Kjeld’s phone claiming he’s seen a murder.But with no evidence and Stenar suffering from Alzheimer’s, the local police think he must have imagined it. Kjeld can’t stop himself from investigating what actually happened, and soon discovers a body. But when the police start to suspect Stenar, it’s a race against time to discover the truth before it’s lost forever.But will uncovering the truth expose family secrets that are best left buried?Atmospheric and chilling, Where Ravens Roost is a gripping crime debut perfect for fans of J M Dalgliesh, Angela Marsons and Jo Nesbo.

The Kill


Jonas Saul - 2012
    His fear of the dark keeps him inside after the sun goes down. He also suffers from aichmophobia, an irrational fear of sharp and pointed objects. If confronted with a knife or a needle, his fear manifests as an out-of-control rage.He's also the man who accidentally killed the heir to the Fuccini syndicate.When the newlyweds honeymoon in Rome, a hit team follows. They keep waving things at Darwin--pointy things, like knives. He just can't control himself when that happens, and accidentally kills a few more 'made men.' The Mafia believes Darwin is a trained killer, hired to take them out, and declare all-out war on the neurotic novelist.Darwin returns to Toronto, but the hits keep coming, the FBI closes in, and a local biker gang offers Darwin their help.Darwin just wants to be left alone with a light on.

Horoscope: The Astrology Murders


Georgia Frontiere - 2014
    Kelly Elizabeth York--a celebrity astrologer and psychologist with a devoted following--finds herself in the terrifying position of helping the police and FBI determine the identity of a serial killer--who just may be targeting her. No matter how careful she is, Kelly knows she will have to confront darkness, an energy so black it will challenge everything she believes in. Until now, Kelly has lived a comfortable, fulfilling life in her Upper West Side brownstone. Yet when four beautiful young women are found murdered, astrological signs carved into their thighs, she is pulled into a mystery whose clues may lead back to an astrological reading gone terribly awry.Horoscope keeps us on the edge of our seats while it draws us into the lives of people whose fortunes seem inextricably linked."I was quickly caught up in the suspense of Horoscope. The characters are well-crafted and compellingly real. It's a fun murder mystery. A great read!"--Sela Ward, actress and author of Homes

Things Go Flying


Shari Lapena - 2007
    Literally.In Things Go Flying, Harold Walker is desperately average and listless at mid-life, stemming in part from the abrupt death of his one-time best friend, Tom. Harold's wife Audrey, an increasingly frustrated housewife and mother to their two teenage sons, is a control freak silently harbouring an explosive secret. Things go flying in the Walker household when Harold's long-deceased mother comes back to haunt them. He finds he has her gift for opening the door to the past-and if there was ever a gift he wanted to return, it's this one! Audrey is similarly terrified-how is she to safeguard her secret now? If she can't control this world, how is she to control the next one? And how will she protect her good china? Harold, who has made a practice of avoiding things all his life, must confront two problems-how to find meaning in this life, and how to come to grips with the mostly terrifying idea that life just might go on forever!

Flinch


Robert Ferrigno - 2001
    Tabloid journalist Jimmy Gage and his plastic-surgeon brother, Jonathan, have long had a twisted and sometimes nearly fatal rivalry, but the ante was upped when Jonathan recently married Jimmy’s ex. So when Jimmy begins to suspect that Jonathan is the serial killer known as The Eggman, he’s neither surprised nor displeased. What ensues is this harried and hard-edged whodunnit that involves everything from petty porn stars to WWF wannabes to gut-wrenchingly gruesome gangsters and gang lords. Flinch is an intricately plotted whirlwind of a tale that will grip you until the very last page.

Free Reign


Rosemary Aubert - 1997
    Now, he lives as a vagrant in the wilderness that runs through the heart of Toronto. One day, while working in his garden, he unearths a severed hand—a hand that wears a ring Ellis recognizes. Thirty years ago, on the day he became a lawyer, he and four of his companions had sealed a pact with just such a ring. Now Ellis begins a search for the victim’s identity, returning to world that had cast him out years ago—a world far more dangerous than the one he left behind...

Holding Lies


John Larison - 2011
    He takes us even deeper into the troubles of Hank Hazelton, a fifty-nine-year-old river guide, as he struggles to reconnect with his daughter after a long estrangement. Before his daughter’s arrival, Hank discovers a drift boat stranded below a rapid, its oarsman missing. Within days, the sheriff has opened a murder investigation, one that to Hank appears more about old grudges than objective evidence. When Hank himself becomes a suspect, he’s forced to confront the violent past of his home valley—and his own culpability. In a novel about finding family in unlikely places, Larison breathes life into a community rich with history, sin, and hope, a place where bears still wander side streets and time is still marked by the seasons of the river. Holding Lies is a taut, big-hearted novel, steeped in the ecology of place and peopled with unforgettable characters.

Bewreathed


Margaret Maron - 2012
    The story itself was inspired by a real New Year’s Eve bonfire here on the farm when a cousin tried to burn some overly wet wood. I was tickled when my brother said, “Never saw gasoline so wet it wouldn't burn,” and knew I’d use that sentence in a story sometime. They really did try to chase some lovers out of that lane and yes, they really did get mired down to the axle.

Vancouver Noir


Sam WiebeYasuko Thanh - 2018
    Each book comprises all new stories, each one set in a distinct neighborhood or location within the respective city. Following the success of Montreal Noir and Toronto Noir, the Noir Series travels to the west coast of Canada.Brand-new stories by: Linda L. Richards, Timothy Taylor, Sheena Kamal, Robin Spano, Carleigh Baker, Sam Wiebe, Dietrich Kalteis, Nathan Ripley, Yasuko Thanh, Kristi Charish, Don English, Nick Mamatas, S.G. Wong, and R.M. Greenaway.From the introduction by Sam Wiebe:You might wonder what shadows could exist in Vancouver, rain-spattered jewel of the Pacific Northwest. Nestled between the US border and the Coast Mountains, the city’s postcard charms are familiar, even to those who’ve never been here, thanks to the films and TV shows shot in Hollywood North: The X-Files and Deadpool, Rumble in the Bronx and Jason Takes Manhattan. Vancouver is the so-called City of Glass. A nice place, in any case, and much too nice for noir.Looked at from afar, Vancouver may seem idyllic. But living here is different—cold and baffling and occasionally hostile. While outsiders focus on high-test BC bud, locals see a heroin crisis: Vancouver is home to the first legalized safe-injection site in North America, now heavily taxed by overdoses resulting from street drugs cut with fentanyl. It’s ground zero for the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, a nationwide catastrophe involving the deaths and disappearances of hundreds of marginalized women. Money and status trample culture and community . . . If Vancouver is a City of Glass, that glass is underneath our feet.

Florida Burning: A Florida Thriller (Will Harper Mystery Series Book 3)


David Crosby - 2018
    A deadly pollutant from a cane field. And an environmentalist dead in a cane field fire. Coincidence? Florida PI Will Harper knows damn well it’s not. Author David Crosby takes aim at Big Sugar as his fictional hero finds himself in the middle of a decades-long battle between the sugar industry, state politics, and the ailing environment. There’s lots of local lore in this captivating hard-boiled mystery about corruption in the region known as Sugarland, nicknamed for the booming industry said to hold state politicians firmly in its greedy pockets. And plenty of non-stop action as well. Wearing his sometime reporter hat, Will takes on an assignment to investigate the algae bloom, but the story becomes personal when he receives a call from Hanna, the woman he’s been dating, panicked because an acquaintance has been found dead in a cane field. Will has to invoke both his PI and reporter’s instincts while staying calm as Hanna becomes more and more frightened. As the case becomes murkier, he begins to unearth the immense chasm between those who are fighting to protect the environment and those who are intoxicated by money and power. Will’s least favorite of the latter variety? The heir to a venerable sugar family whose favorite intimidation tactic is arson. An inquisitive PI could get burned. David Crosby has “Heir to John D. MacDonald” written all over him, as he tackles environmental issues much as his hard-boiled predecessor did. Will Harper will be an automatic favorite for Florida PI fans fans who love MacDonald, not to mention Randy Wayne White, Dawn McKenna, Wayne Stinnett— and a detective who lives on a boat.

The Witness Tree


Amy Pendino - 2018
    She agrees to help neighbors take down a strange double-headed tree that has stood alone between two fields for almost a century. Unexplainable accidents begin haunting those who help, and Dani must uncover a community's secret before tragedy claims her as its next victim.Dani's not the only one running from her past—two generations ago, young Lilly Bradstreet is not the person her small town wants her to be. She falls in love with a Mexican migrant worker and is forced to choose between her family's wishes, her passionate romance, and the life of freedom she's always dreamed of.Lilly's long-forgotten quest for independence and Dani's search for answers intertwine at the foot of the Witness Tree, whose secrets are darker and more unnerving than either woman ever expected. Vivid depictions of small-town bonds, young love, racism, and women who've dreamed and been denied make The Witness Tree a moving, page-turning debut novel.

The Suicide Murders


Howard Engel - 1980
    Benny Cooperman, a private eye with a hard head and a tender heart, was ready to help her in any way he could. But when her husband commits suicide the day Benny begins his investigation, the detective realizes he's dealing with something beyond a simple "family affair."Probing into the curious circumstances surrounding the death, Benny finds himself in the midst of a strange group indeed--one that involves a mysterious psychiatrist, shady eminent citizens, and soon a few more suicides--or murders.

The Woman in the Attic


Emily Hepditch - 2020
    When Hannah returns to the lonely saltbox house to prepare her mother for the transition into assisted living, her childhood home is anything but welcoming. Dilapidated from years of hoarding and neglect, the walls are crumbling, leaving Hannah’s wellness crumbling along with them.While packing her mother's things, Hannah discovers a trap door to the house’s attic, the one she believed for most of her life had been permanently sealed shut. Blinded by curiosity, Hannah enters the attic and finds a mysterious bedroom riddled with dark secrets. Desperate to know more, Hannah begins to scramble for answers, combing the house for clues that may lead her to the truth.Hannah must navigate through the violent outbursts of her senile mother, the prying questions of a nosy hospice nurse, and the rage of the coastal wind that threatens the structure of the house. Piece by piece, she assembles a picture of her mother’s not-so-distant past—a twisted tangle of infatuation, lies, and maybe even murder.The Woman in the Attic is a claustrophobic psychological thriller wrought with suspense. This novel will put you on the edge of your seat . . . and make you wary of the unused spaces collecting dust in your home.

The Fatal Heir


Lois Lewandowski - 2006
    A few years previous, she survived a car accident that shattered her ankle and her first marriage. Now she’s remarried and walking again and life would be perfect—if only she could get pregnant.Fortunately, Gillian’s mother-in-law and one of the Jackson County commissioners from Bend Brook, Nebraska, hatch a plan that will enable Gillian and her husband Clint to afford the next step in fertility treatment: they ask her to become an investigator for the county. Her first assignment is to find the biological parents of the commissioner’s adopted daughter, Caroline. With only one concrete fact to go on—Caroline was left at a Colorado monastery in 1967—Gillian heads for Aspen. Unfortunately, no one at the monastery remembers any such event—or so they say. When one monk goes missing and a woman who’s sleeping in the bed reserved for Gillian is murdered, Gillian has second thoughts. She can’t turn back, though, since most of Bend Brook has taken bets on whether she’ll be able to solve the case.As she uncovers past events that lead to the discovery of Caroline’s true identity, Gillian realizes that sometimes the perfect family might be the one you already have …

The Nightgown


Brad Parks - 2012
    If—that is—he nails the interview and the on-the-spot writing test. Ross has never had a problem spinning a story, but provided with notes he didn't take and quotes he didn't hear it feels flat, and he's not so sure about his chances.So when a car crashes into a building in a nearby town and Carter overhears the assignments editor complaining that there's no one left in the building whom she can send out to cover the story, Carter jumps at the chance and quickly finds himself dangerously close to being in over his head in "The Nightgown," another stellar addition to Brad Parks's acclaimed mystery series.