August was a slow month for reading recommendations. Part of this was because my schedule was full and didn’t allow for as much reading time as I like. Another part was because I read several crappy books in August. Here are two worth following up on.
Crime Always Pays, by Declan Burke. Not available to the public yet, I was lucky enough to score an advance electronic copy. The sequel to last year’s acclaimed The Big O, Crime Always Pays picks up just a few hours later, while things are still getting sorted out. The cast is back but the scene changes to Europe, as Karen King tries to find a safe haven for her wolf-dog mix, Anna. Oh, and €200,000 she picked up at the end of The Big O. Reading as though Elmore Leonard worked from a Carl Hiaasen outline, this book isn’t for those who like cozies or by-the-number procedurals, but it’s a hell of a fun ride.
Easy Innocence, by Libby Fischer Hellmann. A high school hazing incident gone bad and its too quick cover-up launches PI Georgia Davis into complications far afield from any scholastic issues. Hellmann writes a convincing female protagonist who can take care of herself without becoming a man in a skirt. The balance of Georgia’s cop experience and feminine nature is organic and works well, and all the plot twists are satisfying.