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Sleuth It: Dead & Done IX

Historical mysteries let the reader be picked up and be transported to different times and places. A good story is a painless way to get into the period, and, if it features a unsolved crime or two, give a look at history’s darker underside.

The empty mirror: a Viennese mystery by J. Sydney Jones

Hangman blind by Cassandra Clark

Some danger involved: a novel by Will Thomas

Murder on Astor Place by Victoria Thompson

The janissary tree by Jason Goodwin

Time was...Time is... June 2013

This month in history Benedict Arnold was executed, Marilyn Monroe was born, The Beatles' Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band album was released, WWII Allied troops landed on the beaches of Normandy, and the Statue of Liberty arrived in New York.

The real Benedict Arnold by Jim Murphy

The making of Some like it hot: my memories of Marilyn Monroe and the classic American movie by Tony Curtis with Mark A. Vieira

D-day: the battle for Normandy by Antony Beevor

Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band [sound recording] by The Beatles

Enlightening the world: the creation of the Statue of Liberty by Yasmin Sabina Khan

In Old New York

Take a walk back in history to the New York City of the 1870s, '80s and '90s where you will encounter the Astors and Vanderbilts, Diamond Jim Brady, Boss Tweed, Stanford White, and Teddy Roosevelt:

American passage: the history of Ellis Island by Vincent J. Cannato

The architect of desire: beauty and danger in the Stanford White family by Suzannah Lessard

The blizzard of '88 by Mary Cable

Boss Tweed: the rise and fall of the corrupt pol who conceived the soul of modern New York by Kenneth D. Ackerman

Commissioner Roosevelt: the story of Theodore Roosevelt and the New York City police, 1895-1897 by H. Paul Jeffers

Consuelo and Alva Vanderbilt: the story of a daughter and a mother in the Gilded Age by Amanda Mackenzie Stuart

2009 Nero Award Announced

New York lawyer-turned-novelist Joseph Teller has won the 2009 Nero Award for his novel The Tenth Case (Mira). That announcement came during the annual Black Orchid Weekend, hosted in New York City by the Nero Wolfe fan organization, The Wolfe Pack. The other two crime novels in contention were The Dark Tide, by Andrew Gross (HarperCollins), and The Fault Tree, by Louise Ure (Minotaur Books).

Homer & Langley

E.L. Doctorow's latest novel Homer & Langley is based on the true story of the Collyer brothers, notorious for their compulsive hoarding in the first half of the 20th century. The two unemployed siblings lived together for thirty years in their New York City home, where they obsessively collected items such as newspapers, books, furniture, chandeliers, and musical instruments, while at the same time setting booby traps in the hallways to protect against intruders. Their amazing story is often cited as an example of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.

In the Shadow of Gotham

In the Shadow of Gotham, Stefanie Pintoff's debut, won the first Minotaur Books/MWA Best First Crime Novel award. It's the Twentieth Century and crime detection has begun to take advantage of the new sciences available: fingerprints, profiling. Detective Simon Ziele has moved to Dobson, a small town in New York's Westchester county, a train-ride from New York City, following the tragic death of his fiance in the wreck of the steamship General Slocum in 1904. Ziele had been one of the NYC detectives called to scene to rescue survivors, but he was unable to save Rachel, his fiance.