Mystery! edited by Chantelle Aimée Osman

Mystery! edited by Chantelle Aimée Osman

The Origins Game Fair in Columbus is something we like to do every year, but this year we didn't make it due to my new job. I did have a friend who was nice enough to pick up this year's anthology - with the Mystery theme, I didn't want to miss is. He also got several of the writers to autograph it. Mystery!, like most anthologies, is a bit uneven. Some stories were excellent, some fine, and one didn't fit at all. There were 14 stories in all, but I'll only mention a few that struck me. "The Abomination of Fensmere" by Lucy A. Snyder was the first story in the collection, but it felt more horror with a Lovecraftian bent than mystery. I don't think it was the best way to start. Timothy Zahn's "(Ms.) Taken Identity" was good, both the mystery plot and the world he created where doppels are people who can look like anyone they want, until they're dead, then they...
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Cozy Christmas Shorts from Gemma Halliday Publishing

This was my last Christmas read for the season. Like most anthologies, it has its ups and downs. Each of these short stories fits into a series, but the only series I had read before is the Southern Pasta Shop mysteries. I will say that each story gave a good feeling for the main character and style of mystery and I'd like to read more of a few of them. Most of the mysteries were cute and fun, but I did have a few favorites. I didn't really hate any of them, but there were a couple that I wasn't fond of. Favorites: "Have Yourself a Deadly Little Christmas" by Leslie Langtry - The Bombay family may be assassins, but they are funny, pragmatic, inventive and really care about each other. And I loved the spin they took with And Then There Were None. "A (Gingerbread) Diorama of Death" by Gin Jones - Helen, the main character, seems like an interesting lady, even though...
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Mistletoe Mysteries collected by Charlotte MacLeod

I don't know why, but I am more likely to pick up short story collections in December than any other time of year. It's even better when they're mysteries. This collection, like most, has high points and low points. I have read several of the authors before and discovered a couple I'd like to read more of. A couple of my favorites: (okay, more than a couple. There were a lot of good stories here.) "The Haunted Crescent" by Peter Lovesey has a great twist at the end that I didn't see coming. "Dutch Treat" by Aaron Elkins was fun. I tend to like when art and murder go hand in hand. "The Touch of Koyada" by Edward Hoch was another good one. I love how some writers can just pack so much into so few pages. I think I'll read more of his Simon Ark stories. Of course, Pronzini's "Here Comes Santa Claus" was enjoyable. I like his Nameless Detective. A few misses: Dorothy Salisbury Davis'...
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