Annal: 2000 Anthony Award for Best First Novel

Results of the Anthony Award in the year 2000.

Book:Murder, With Peacocks

Murder, With Peacocks: A Meg Langslow Mystery

Donna Andrews

Donna Andrews introduces a cast of quirky characters who will pull her heroine in different directions as she plans three successive summer weddings.

When Meg Langslow is roped into being a bridesmaid for the nuptials of her mother, her brother’s fiancee, and her own best friend, she is apprehensive. Getting the brides to chose their outfits and those of their bridesmaids (and not change their minds three days later), trying to capture the principals long enough to work out details, and even finding peacocks to strut around the garden during the ceremony—these are things Meg can handle. She can brush off the unfortunate oaf who is smitten with her, and take philosophically her disappointment when she learns that the only eligible man in her small Virginia town (and a delightful hunk he is) is of questionable sexual preference. But even Meg is taken aback when the unpleasant former sister-in-law of Meg’s…[more]

Book:Circles of Confusion

Circles of Confusion: A Claire Montrose Mystery

April Henry

Why did dear departed Aunt Cady have an exquisite old painting buried beneath World War II paraphernalia? And how can a painting so dramatically shift Claire’s perspective on everything from her uninspired love life to her ho-hum job in the Oregon state custom license plate division?

MSTBF8


(must be fate)

A sophisticated art expert tells Claire the painting isn’t valuable. Why, then, is she being followed, her hotel room getting ransacked, and her life being thrown in a state of havoc that reaches back to her quiet home in Portland? The closer Claire comes to the truth about her inherited masterpiece, the more questions—and trouble—she uncovers. Though offers of help are arriving in very intriguing packages, Claire is caught in the middle of a dangerous tug-of-war that can leave her either richer in body, soul, and bank book—or broken, battered, and pushing up daisies.

Book:Inner City Blues

Inner City Blues: A Charlotte Justice Novel

Paula L. Woods

As an African-American woman in the predominantly white-male LAPD, homicide detective Charlotte Justice knows about heat. But now, thanks to twelve decent, pro-police jurors in Simi Valley, Los Angeles is a city rife with fires and riots. Forty-eight hours into the maelstrom, a prominent black doctor is mistaken for a car thief. Justice quickly defuses the violent confrontation, saving Dr. Lance Mitchell from a potentially savage beating by L.A.’s finest. But that’s just the corner of a more ominous picture.

For the body of “Cinque” Lewis is found nearby with the good doctor’s wallet beneath it. A one-time radical, Lewis murdered Justice’s husband and baby girl in a hail of bullets thirteen years ago, then dropped out of sight. Navigating a terrain riddled with emotional land mines, defying the staunch LAPD hierarchy, Justice now sets out to uncover the shady truth connecting Mitchell and Lewis—but by reliving the tragic past, she may be forced to repeat it…

Book:Murder in the Marais

Murder in the Marais: An Aimée Leduc Investigation

Cara Black

A new mystery series set in Paris introduces intrepid detective Aimée Leduc.

It is November 1993 and the French prime ministerial candidate is about to sign a treaty with Germany that will severely restrict immigration, reminiscent of the Vichy laws. Aimée Leduc is approached by a rabbi to decipher a fifty-year-old encrypted photograph and place it in the hands of Lili Stein. When she arrives at Lili’s apartment in the Marais, the old Jewish quarter of Paris, she finds a corpse in whose forehead is carved a swastika. With the help of her partner, a dwarf with extraordinary computer hacking skills, Aime is determined to solve this horrendous crime. Then more murders follow.

Her search for the killer leads her to a German war veteran involved in the 1940s with a Jewish girl he was supposed to send to her death. It takes Aimée undercover inside a neo-Nazi group, where she must play a dangerous game of current politics and old war crimes. Many of the older Jews in the Marais are afraid and prefer to leave the past alone, but the horrible legacy of the death camps and the words “never forget” propel Aimée to find out the true identities of the criminals past and present.

Book:Revenge of the Gypsy Queen

Revenge of the Gypsy Queen

Kris Neri

Families: Can’t live with ‘em, can’t kill ‘em…

The beleaguered daughter of eccentric Hollywood stars, mystery writer Tracy Eaton is no stranger to wacky people, especially within her family. So when her sister-in-law’s wedding becomes a three-ring circus, Tracy is nonplussed, even when the bride is kidnapped.

Her snoot, bickering in-laws refuse to call the police and insist on paying the ransom, but Tracy knows that if justice is gong to prevail, it will definitely need her help. Because…the groom is riding around in a bulletproof limo; sweet, lovable Uncle Philly—a con artist if ever there was—has disappeared; and there are strange happenings at the engaged couple’s upscale restaurant: the Gypsy Princess. It will take all of Tracy’s innate nosiness and nerve to get to the shocking truth—and the Eaton family secret.

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