AT THE SCENE - April 2016
L to R: Catriona McPherson, Rita Lakin, Adrian McKinty, Judith Flanders, and Meg Abbott.
Hi everyone,

The Spring Issue #144 is just getting ready to mail out. Here's a little preview of some of the highlights:

Catriona McPherson credits the wildly popular TV series Downton Abbey for persuading a US publisher to take on her 1920s-era Dandy Gilver novels. The rest is history - literally, in her fun and smart novels that take on many social issues and events in England of the 1920s and '30s. Oline Cogdill chats with the author in the next issue.

The youth revolution of the 1960s was the inspiration for TV's The Mod Squad (1968-1973) with its trio of hippies-turned-undercover cops. The pioneering scriptwriter Rita Lakin was on the set as one of the very few women writers at the time. You can look forward to some far out industry insider tales (and some far out hairdos, too).

Adrian McKinty, the author behind the very funny and very dark Sean Duffy series about a Belfast cop during The Troubles (1969-1997), discusses his own childhood memories of that tumultuous period in Irish history.

Author Judith Flanders was once a book editor and has bestowed her expertise and experience on her series character, Samantha "Sam" Clair, who works in a London publishing company. Sam's acidic observations on interminable editorial meetings, recalcitrant authors, and woefully inept editorial assistants, will have you laughing out loud - it certainly had me.

Megan Abbott's essay, "Girls Like Us," takes a look at the rise of ordinary women in current crime fiction such as The Girl on the Train and Gone Girl. "Their settings, so close to home, are places most readers find more familiar than the world of the mob, or spycraft, or the high-stakes drug trade," writes Abbott. "The domestic sphere is a world where knowledge is always only partial, where power in any relationship is fleeting, and where marriage - at least most of them - is always a bit of a masquerade. And this is a world that readers understand intimately and struggle with daily."

Plus "New Books" essays, reviews, "The Hook" and more on the way to you later this month.

Very best,

Kate Stine

P.S. Don't forget to join Mystery Scene at Malice Domestic 28 for our annual New Authors Breakfast on Sunday, May 1st! See you there.

We're always interested in hearing your recommendations as well. Please send in your fave raves for our next issue. Email and you'll be entered to win a free book. 

article1Michael Robotham on Tolkien and The Lord of the Rings

Michael Robotham 
Although I can't remember exactly when I discovered the joys of reading, one particular book in my library has special pride of place, because it is the first one that I ever "earned."

The battered copy of The Lord of the Rings is held together by sticky tape, glue, and a large rubber band. It once resided in my high school library and still has the library card in a sleeve inside the back cover...


Michael Robotham's latest is
Close Your Eyes (Mulholland Books, April 2016).  
"Writers on Reading" is a special ongoing Mystery Scene series available as a first-look exclusive to our newsletter subscribers.


Article3The Remarkable Dilys Winn (1939-2016)

Will the real Dilys Winn please stand up? Dilys Winn on To Tell The Truth in 1972

Dilys Winn, the pioneering mystery bookseller, editor, and mystery fan died on February 5, 2016, in Asheville, North Carolina. Winn opened the independent bookstore Murder Ink, the very first bookstore devoted solely to mystery fiction, in New York City in 1972.

Back in 1976, a ten-year-old Joseph Goodrich, now an Edgar Award-winning playwright and writer, but then an avid mystery reader in Minnesota, screwed up the courage to call the pioneering bookstore owner: "I'd called Murder Ink! In New York City! I'd spoken with Dilys Winn!"

Read Joseph Goodrich's tale at

article4Beyond the Book Series: Classic Sleuths in New Formats
Leslie Charteris and The Saint
Roger Moore as Simon Templar "The Saint" on the television series that ran from 1962-1969
For the first in an ongoing series about classic sleuths reappearing in new media formats from audiobooks to streaming television, Mystery Scene's award-winning contributor Dick Lochte discusses Leslie Charteris' The Saint, a criminal who targets the corrupt and returns his proceeds (minus 10 percent) to charity or their rightful owners.
Mystery Scene Hangman

 article7Overheard: IRS Agent Tara Holloway on Death and Taxes

Author Diane Kelly
"Since joining the IRS a little over a year ago, I'd faced down a con artist running a Bernie Madoff style Ponzi scheme, a killer operating a cross-border crime enterprise, a televangelist who'd fleeced his flock, the president of a secessionist group that was stockpiling weapons, terrorists, a sleazy strip club owner operating a prostitution ring, a country-western superstar who'd thumbed his nose at the IRS, and a violent drug cartel. Guess you could say I'd been busy. You could also say there were as many ways to cheat the government as there were tax evaders. Each had their own unique scheme or scam. But none had gotten past me . . . so far."   
- IRS Special Agent Tara Holloway, the Texan protagonist of Diane Kelly's romantic cozy series about taxes, crime, and sexy cowboys. 

by Oline Cogdill
L.R. King, The End of Her Series?/The Murder of Mary Russell?

by Dick Lochte
For the first in an ongoing series about classic sleuths reappearing in new media formats. 

Reviews: More Reviews
Did you know that MS features even more reviews online?  Look for the tag "Online Exclusive." 
Mystery Scene Mast
Established in 1985, Mystery Scene Magazine is the oldest, largest, and most authoritative guide to the crime fiction genre. 

#144, Spring 2016

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