The Mystery, Crime, and Thriller Group discussion

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Book Hunting / Recommendations > Introspective mystery/thriller

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message 1: by Cathy (last edited Nov 02, 2011 04:59PM) (new)

Cathy (cathy_perkins) | 56 comments I’ve been reading Jonathon Kingand John Hart and like the more introspective protagonist. Can anyone suggest another similar author?


message 2: by Diane S ☔ (new)

Diane S ☔ | 29 comments You can try Dennis Lehane, John Gilstrap or Harlan Coben. Not quite the same but many similarities. I also like William Kruger Kent.


message 3: by Cathy (new)

Cathy (cathy_perkins) | 56 comments Thanks Diane -
I've read WKK and Coben; as often as I've heard of Lehane, I don't think I've read his. Any particular suggestion?
I'm not familiar with Gilstrap, so same question - a particular favorite?


message 4: by Jeanie (new)

Jeanie (Birdyseeds) | 382 comments Robert Crais's Elvis Cole might fit the bill if you love a little humor to go along with the introspection.


message 5: by Terry (new)

Terry Huebner (TerryHuebner) | 17 comments Robert Crais is very good. Perhaps my favorite is John Sandford and his Prey series with Lucas Davenport. I also like his more recent series with Virgil Flowers. Jeffery Deaver is also good.


message 6: by Jeanie (new)

Jeanie (Birdyseeds) | 382 comments I have a major crush on "that effin Flowers". (laughing). Sanford did one of the best jobs of slipping a new character into an established series that I've ever seen. It was so seamless and Virgil fit in so well that I kept flipping back through the books that came before convinced that he must've been featured, at least, briefly in a few of them. I download the Virgil books on the day they are released because I can't wait to see what he's going to manage, or Lucas will manage, to get our blonde haired boy into, and, of course, to see if he'll be pulling his boat. (grin)


message 7: by Erin (new)

Erin | 65 comments Cathy wrote: "Thanks Diane -
I've read WKK and Coben; as often as I've heard of Lehane, I don't think I've read his. Any particular suggestion?
I'm not familiar with Gilstrap, so same question - a particular fa..."


Lehane's Kenzie & Gennaro books are really good. A Drink Before The War is the first in the series. I really liked Mystic River to.


message 8: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Michael | 674 comments Jeanie wrote: "I have a major crush on "that effin Flowers". (laughing). Sanford did one of the best jobs of slipping a new character into an established series that I've ever seen. It was so seamless and Virgil..."

I think Sandford has been the most successful of any author I read at keeping a series "fresh" by changing the circumstances of his main character, taking Lucas from his single woman-chasing detective/serial killer status to married with a family/head of state investigators, then adding Flowers to fill in the open slot for a single detective.

Robert Parker made the attempt with both Jesse Stone and Sunny Randall, not as successfully. Thomas Perry seems to alternate standalones with books that continue one or another of his series.

Generally, though, it seems as if authors have difficulty maintaining more than one series and doing so without the series getting tiresome, either to themselves or their readers.


message 9: by Cathy (new)

Cathy (cathy_perkins) | 56 comments Sharon wrote: "Jeanie wrote: "I have a major crush on "that effin Flowers". (laughing). Sanford did one of the best jobs of slipping a new character into an established series that I've ever seen. It was so seam..."

I loved the early Prey books but thought the series got tired toward the end (I remember Sandford getting panned in the NY Times review). Virgil is coming into his own as a character and Lucas is great as the cynical boss/cameo role.

Sometimes I think the author has to 'learn' the characters in a new series. For example, I loved Ridley Pearson's Bolt series. When he moved to the Sun Valley series (blanking on the sheriff's name) I didn't especially like them until about the third one.


message 10: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Michael | 674 comments Cathy wrote: "I loved the early Prey books but thought the series got tired toward the end "

I agree with that to a great extent, but once Sandford got Lucas married/with family and into a new job they picked up again, for me at least. Three of my favorite Prey series books are from this later group, in fact.


message 11: by Jeanie (new)

Jeanie (Birdyseeds) | 382 comments Sharon wrote: "Cathy wrote: "I loved the early Prey books but thought the series got tired toward the end "

I agree with that to a great extent, but once Sandford got Lucas married/with family and into a new job..."


Same for me, Sharon. Same for me. (smile)


message 12: by Georgia (new)

Georgia | 536 comments Mystic RiverMystic Riverwas one of the best!!!!!!! Has anyone read Caught Caught by Harlan Coben ? I need some questions to ask my book club. I haven't read the book yet and will do so in March. Thanks


message 13: by Jeanie (new)

Jeanie (Birdyseeds) | 382 comments Georgia wrote: "Mystic RiverMystic Riverwas one of the best!!!!!!! Has anyone read CaughtCaught by Harlan Coben? I need some questions to ask my book club. I haven't read the book yet and will ..."

Zoinks! My only exposure to "Mystic River" was via the movie version. Stories like that practically break my heart and burden my mind for quite awhile after reading them, so unless I'm feeling extremely strong emotionally and nothing "heavy" is taking place in my life at the time, I do not read them. Is all of Lehane's work that dark? Don't get me wrong, it was a fabulous movie, but it was so very, very sad. I didn't leave the theater feeling better about my life and the world in general, but, instead, quite the opposite.


message 14: by Donna, Co-Moderator (new)

Donna | 2178 comments Mod
Most of what I've read by Lehane has been dark, very good but very dark.


message 15: by Georgia (new)

Georgia | 536 comments Are we the Mystery, Crime and Thriller group? Not too many stories are happy in this genre, but it does put the universe back in order.


message 16: by Jeanie (new)

Jeanie (Birdyseeds) | 382 comments Donna wrote: "Most of what I've read by Lehane has been dark, very good but very dark."

(adds Lehane to my "do not attempt unless real life is blissful, physical health is supreme, and have plenty of recovery time"). I wish so much that I could read such stories and not take an emotional beating, but I do.


message 17: by Cathy (new)

Cathy (cathy_perkins) | 56 comments Georgia wrote: "Mystic RiverMystic Riverwas one of the best!!!!!!! Has anyone read CaughtCaught by Harlan Coben? I need some questions to ask my book club. I haven't read the book yet and will ..."

I've read and liked several of Coben's books, but this one opens with the protagonist set up in a sexual preditor sting. It's a premise I don't care for so I didn't finish it. Maybe that's a question for your group - how do you feel about the presumed innocence or guilt of a person on either side of a sex-crime?


message 18: by Jeanie (new)

Jeanie (Birdyseeds) | 382 comments Cathy wrote: "I've read and liked several of Coben's books, but this one opens with the protagonist set up in a sexual preditor sting. It's a premise I don't care for so I didn't finish it. Maybe that's a question for your group - how do you feel about the presumed innocence or guilt of a person on either side of a sex-crime?"

Cathy, I'm such a marshmallow that once it began to even appear that Myron was going to be suspected of such a crime in Promise Me, I put it down and couldn't finish it. (imagining Georgia rightfully rolling her eyes) My mother-in-law's cousin committed suicide in the storeroom of his bookstore several years ago because two teenaged boys accused him of sexually molesting them. Later, they tearfully confessed that they had been shoplifting, and my mother-in-law's cousin had caught them at it and had banished them permanently from the premises. So, in retaliation, the boys decided to tell this horrible lie about a good and decent man. What my mother-in-law's cousin knew, however, and conveyed in his suicide letter was that guilt or innocence matters little in the public eye. Once you stand accused of a sex crime you are, basically, ruined.


message 19: by Sharon (new)

Sharon Michael | 674 comments Jeanie wrote: "I wish so much that I could read such stories and not take an emotional beating, but I do. "

I read for entertainment and I simply do not find dark/grim and depressing something I enjoy, so I don't read it. I don't even wish that I 'could' read that kind of book without being upset. I worked in law enforcement and in a psych hospital, I've seen dark, depressing, grim up close and personal in real life and I dont' care to go there for my entertainment.


message 20: by Terry (new)

Terry Huebner (TerryHuebner) | 17 comments This is the genre I tend to read so I'm not that worried about subject matter, but some things just don't appeal to me. Child predators are one of these. There is also a human trafficing element in Taken by Robert Crais that doesn't appeal to me that much either. I don't mind a lot of things, but that kind of stuff isn't that entertaining to me.


message 21: by Georgia (new)

Georgia | 536 comments Cathy wrote: "Georgia wrote: "Mystic RiverMystic Riverwas one of the best!!!!!!! Has anyone read CaughtCaught by Harlan Coben? I need some questions to ask my book club. I haven't read the bo..."

Thank you Cathy, I really appreciate your question and will use it in our discussion.


message 22: by Katherine (new)

Katherine | 187 comments Sorry, but I have to put a comment in these unused topics as far as I can figure out to remove them from my unread topics listing on my app. Have managed to delete them on the website but they are still unread from the app point of view. Sorry for being such a pain but no other help forthcoming in terms of getting rid of them. Katherine


message 23: by Cathy (new)

Cathy (cathy_perkins) | 56 comments Sharon wrote: "Cathy wrote: "I loved the early Prey books but thought the series got tired toward the end "

I agree with that to a great extent, but once Sandford got Lucas married/with family and into a new job..."


I thought the latest ones were wonderful - loved the one where his daughter had a leading POV... blanking on the title... must go search


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