I suggest you open this mystery novel the way you open a beautifully wrapped gift: with heightened perceptions and the tiniest bit of doubt. What if it’s not my size? Most mysteries (correct me if I’m wrong) are not stylized, legend-inspired stories that have bigamous murders occurring two centuries apart.
In the ‘bad old days’ when there were a dozen publishing power houses in New York that controlled the industry, everyone knew what a genre books was. If it was a mystery, it started with a murder. If it was romance, it was boy-meets-girl-loses-girl-gets-girl-back. It was all very simple and quite generic, the root of the term genre. But all of that has changed. The industry has outsized and now books that would not have gotten so much as a nod a decade ago are in print. Continue reading