~ Archive for New Mexico ~

The Last Noel


It’s a little off season to be reading this book, but I actually read it right after the holidays. I just haven’t been posting any of these nano-reviews lately for a variety of reasons that no one would find interesting.

Steve Brewer is one of four contributors to this collection of novellas with a holiday theme. The other writers are Catherine Dain, Mat Coward, and Linda Berry, whose stories, I’m sorry to say, I didn’t read. Brewer’s leadoff tale, Sanity Clause, features Albuquerque PI Bubba Mabry, his wife, reporter Felicia Quattlebaum, his Dodge Ram, and Santa, very dead, at a local mall. Brewer is always good for a fast, fun read. I’ll read the other stories someday.

Published in mass market paperback by Worldwide Library. ISBN 0373265093

Skeleton Man


Tony Hillerman returns to the bookshelf with this tale based on a 1956 plane crash in the Grand Canyon. While Jim Chee is suffering a little anxiety over his forthcoming marriage to Bernie Manuelito, Joe Leaphorn is called in for a consultation. Leaphorn digs up old memories and, with Chee, an old case. As always, Hillerman’s characters are as welcome as old friends.

Published in hardcover by Harper Collins. ISBN 0060563443

Convenient Disposal


Steven F. Havill continues the Posadas County series with this title, featuring Undersheriff Estelle Reyes-Guzman. As always, he weaves the everyday lives of his characters, with everyday crimes. The end result is a compelling read. Highly recommended.

Published in hardcover by St. Martin’s Press. ISBN 0312324049



Hot on Mr. Leonard’s literary heels is Steve Brewer with his latest novel about an Albuquerque car thief who steals the wrong low rider, but doesn’t find out until he discovers a dead DEA informant in the trunk of his next job, a 1965 T-bird. You can also read Mr. Brewer’s column in the Albuquerque Tribune.

Published in hardcover by speck press. ISBN 097257763

Slow Kill


Michael McGarrity returns with the latest installment of his series featuring Santa Fe Police Chief Kevin Kerney. Kerney travels outside of New Mexico and becomes a murder suspect. The case has ties to Santa Fe, the FBI, and a Vietnam KIA. Smooth reading.

Published in hardcover by Dutton. ISBN 052594799X

Excess homicide: A Four Corners mystery


Detective Annette Trieri takes a leave of absence from the Durango PD to work for the Colorado Bureau of Investigation on a series of murders targeting environmental activists. Meanwhile, her husband, Dean Hal Weathers deals with the usual summer headaches at Fremont State University. HP Hanson takes readers on a rollercoaster ride all over the Four Corners region.

Published in trade paperback by 1stBooks Library. ISBN 141072817X

A Thief of Time


I saw the film adaptation of Tony Hillerman‘s eighth novel at the Taos Picture Show. The film was directed by Chris Eyre and stars Wes Studi as Joe Leaphorn and Adam Beach as Jim Chee.

This is the third Hillerman film from the same production company, with the same cast and crew. Alice Arlen’s script has a bit more humor than the previous films and we continue to see interesting developments in the lives of Leaphorn and Chee. Nicely done.

A Thief of Time will be broadcast on PBS this July. Don’t miss it.

The Clovis Incident


Writer Pari Noskin Taichert has crafted a breezy, fast-paced, slightly odd tale of a publicist looking for a job with the Chamber of Commerce in Clovis, NM. Murder, ghosts, a talking cat, and alien abductions ensue. First in a planned series of mystery novels set in New Mexico locales.

Published in hardcover by University of New Mexico Press. ISBN 0826331858

The Shadow of Venus


It’s pretty clear that Judith Van Gieson knows and loves the state of New Mexico. Claire Reynier, in her fifth appearance, travels through northern New Mexico and her own memories as she tries to learn the identity of a homeless woman found dead in the basement of the UNM library.

Published in paperback by Signet. ISBN 0451211340

Deadly Morsels


Deadly Morsels contains four mystery novellas with food themes. I picked up this book because it has Red or Green?, a Posadas County story by Steven F. Havill. An old friend of retired sheriff Bill Gastner dies of an apparent heart attack while eating a Burrito Grande from his favorite restaurant. The green chile is a suspect.

Published in paperback by Worldwide. ISBN 0373264526

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