I’m reading (and loving) my competition right now, wishing I could master the lackadaisical yet tough-guy voice John Sandford brings to “Twisted Prey.” Michael Connelly’s “The Late Show” knocked me out, too. A new female cop protagonist who’s tough, plucky and slightly audacious. For pure shiver power I enjoyed Emma Cline’s “The Girls,” a back-story look at a ’70s gang à la Charlie Manson. All gritty stuff and thoroughly inspiring.

Gerry Schmitt, Twin Cities mystery writer


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