A California Magazine with Local Focus and Global Appeal:
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Weekly issues every Saturday morning and other special articles throughout the week — there's something for everyone. Check out our sister sites Kings River Lite and KRL Reviews & News for bonus articles.


Sharon Tucker

by Sharon Tucker


It can be most comforting to sit back in your easy chair with a hot beverage and buttered scones as late winter changes to early spring, picking up a St Patrick’s Day mystery to welcome the season. Sr. Carol Anne O’Marie’s Murder at the Monk’s Table, Leslie Meier’s St. Patrick’s Day Murder and Isis Crawford’s A Catered St. Patrick’s Day will all nicely fit the bill for just that.

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by Sharon Tucker


CAUTION: Spoilers abound.
Having had a bit of time to think about and see the latest Moffat and Gatiss Sherlock a time or two, I have to admit I like it now much better than I did initially. Somehow I had developed an unrealistic yearning to spend the whole action of the story in Conan Doyle’s era, enjoying Holmes and Watson exclusively in their original setting, but I was ignoring the essence of what Moffat and Gatiss always do with Conan Doyle’s characters and plots.
They turn the stories around.

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by Sharon Tucker


Prior to reading Hazel Holt’s Mrs. Malory mysteries, it hadn’t particularly occurred to me that literary critics would make first rate detectives. It does make sense though if you consider that critics “pluck out the heart” of a writer’s mystery as a matter of course. Critics have a discerning intelligence that would prove invaluable to the police and private detectives as would understanding motivations, analyzing character and making logical inferences.

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by Sharon Tucker


While we ready ourselves for Benedict Cumberbach and Martin Freeman in Arthur Conan Doyle’s nineteenth century London adventure, Sherlock: The Abominable Bride on PBS January 1, 2016, you are probably in the mood to start your holiday early by reading a Christmas cozy. The Mrs. Jeffries and Inspector Witherspoon series by Emily Brightwell (AKA Cheryl Lanham) is just the ticket. It’s murder most Victorian in Mrs. Jeffries and the Yuletide Weddings (2009), Mrs. Jeffries and the Mistletoe Mix-up (2011) and Mrs. Jeffries and the Merry Gentlemen (2014).

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by Sharon Tucker


Goldy Bear was living in a dream when she fell in love with and married a handsome OB-GYN, looking forward to a life of love, security and comfort. Then to her horror, husband John Richard Korman, devolved into “The Jerk,” prone to rages that devolved into physical abuse. What’s a woman to do when her fairy tale doesn’t come true?

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by Sharon Tucker


As Halloween draws near, a good ghost story is just the thing to read. Of the ghostly tales out there, Alice Hoffman’s Practical Magic (1995), Kate Ellis’s Watching the Ghosts (1979) and Paull Gallico’s Too Many Ghosts (1959) appealed to me this fall largely because, of all the ones I looked at, each of these is unusual in style and approach.

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by Sharon Tucker


If I could use magic to modify the hot summer weather that’s back now as September begins, I’d raise my wand at once. However, lacking the skill to conjure weather, instead I’ve avoided thinking about my skyrocketing electric bill by reading three mysteries set in worlds where altering the weather would be but a minor accomplishment. The Shotgun Arcana by R. S. Belcher, Touch of Frost by Jennifer Estep, and The Last Apprentice by Joseph Delaney may vary widely in location and era, but all three take place in worlds where “mundane” flew out the window long ago.

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by Sharon Tucker


The August weather may still be stiflingly hot, but schools everywhere are preparing to gear up for fall and the start of a new school year–exciting times, yes? K-12 students are bracing themselves! University students are excited if they are freshman and blasé if they are upperclassmen. Teachers everywhere will head back to school two weeks early to prepare for the upcoming term, but the rest of us will be footing the bills or limp with relief that we are not footing the bills for books, new clothes and school supplies.

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Spider’s Trap By Jennifer Estep

IN THE July 25 ISSUE

FROM THE 2015 Articles,
andFantasy & Fangs,
andSharon Tucker
SECTIONS

by Sharon Tucker



Jennifer Estep’s Elemental Assassin urban fantasy series is quite a ride. If you have been with Gin Blanco on the whole trip detailed in the previous 12 novels in the series, then you have seen her begin as a lone assassin in Spider’s Bite and watched as events in it and her succeeding adventures have brought her to the point where Spider’s Trap, number 13, begins.

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by Sharon Tucker


Perhaps your summer reading, like mine, involves pulling the venetian blinds mostly closed against the afternoon sun, getting the AC just right and then settling back with a good book, a glass of iced tea and finally settling in to read, going where your author takes you.

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Remembering Ruth Rendell

IN THE June 13 ISSUE

FROM THE 2015 Articles,
andMysteryrat's Maze,
andSharon Tucker
SECTIONS

by Sharon Tucker


On May 2, 2015, Ruth Rendell, Baroness Rendell of Babergh, died at the age of 85, leaving behind a legacy of more than 60 best-selling novels. She had been a Labor Party member of the House of Lords, and sponsor to various charities for housing, children with heart disease, assisted suicide, and the rights of African women.

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by Sharon Tucker


Earth day (April 22) always makes me long to be a flower child again. I want to wear Birkenstocks, put on a patchwork granny dress and to have flowers in my hair—all of which I did daily a number of years ago—except maybe the flowers. I want to spend the day outdoors in a sylvan setting, far away from the city where cars vibrate with rap music, and I want to be in a place where the internet is just a line of code on the breeze.

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by Sharon Tucker


If you read and enjoy thrillers, you are probably familiar with those written about and during the Cold War (roughly between 1947 and 1991). The spy literature this era spawned is still classic and includes authors Ian Fleming, John LeCarre, Len Deighton, Alistair McLean, Frederick Forsythe, and Robert Ludlum, among many others.

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by Sharon Tucker


As this official holiday for lovers (and anti-holiday for singletons) now approaches, are you planning a sumptuous dinner with champagne followed by a molten chocolate extravaganza for dessert? If so, good for you! Celebration of this holiday is highly individual, perhaps never more so than by authors’ writing murder mysteries centered on or around it. So pick up one or more of these Valentine-themed mysteries by Rendell, Meier and McLeish and relax, sit back and enjoy.

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