D. R. Meredith

D. R. Meredith is the author of 18 novels, mysteries and historical novels, a TV novelization, and numerous short stories.

A fan of mysteries since a childhood obsession with Agatha Christie and Rex Stout, Ms. Meredith has written three mystery series set in the Texas Panhandle, a little-known area of the state—even to other Texans.

Two titles, Murder by Impulse and Murder by Deception in the John Lloyd Branson series, were finalists for the Anthony Award. An equal obsession with the American West inspired her to write two historical sagas, A Time Too Late and The Reckoning, which she describes as “two hanky books for readers who want their hearts tugged while satisfying their curiosity about the Old West.”

The book review editor for Roundup magazine for more than 20 years, Ms. Meredith owns a private library of more than 5,000 books on the American West. She is a member of Western Writers of America, Mystery Writers of America, Sisters in Crime, and American Crime Writers League. She has spoken at national writers conferences, several universities, libraries, and writers’ workshops and tries not to make a habit of speaking for free.

Book Reviews by D. R. Meredith

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A thriller that combines almost unbearable suspense, a nightmare figure out of some twisted superhero comic, the worst consequences of technology, and an ordinary man who lives almost as a recluse—

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suspenseful, gritty, well plotted and written, but not a pleasant book to read. . . . ultra-realistic crime fiction.”

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The book jacket featuring the young girl in flounced ball gown and elbow length silk gloves, not to mention the bright pink band indicative of a beauty pageant that slashes diagonally across the co

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The Lost Boy is a complex and brilliant novel, but is one of Lackberg’s darkest stories.”

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“Hell Bay is an excellent historical mystery with a strong sense of place and time, . . .

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“The only criticism that fans will have is that Undisclosed Files is not twice or three times as long. One is left wanting more.”

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Set in Brighton at Christmas time, Smoke and Mirrors by Elly Griffiths spins a tale of murder, theatrical magic tricks, and some very grim fairy tales.

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“Winston Groom blends history with a strong sense of place to create a compelling story featuring both fictional and historic characters.”

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Eloquent, almost poetic descriptive narrative combines with frequent brutal prose to create a story both compelling and stomach-churning set in beautiful, but often politically corrupt Kyrgyzstan.

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News of the World by Paulette Jiles is everything a western novel ought to be: strong plot, evocative setting, difficult moral choices, and unforgettable characters.

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A brutal, realistic portrait of 1941, the second winter of life in occupied Denmark and Poland, as experienced by a Danish farm laborer and his family, and a half-Jewish Polish girl forced into pro

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“No one knows when a ghost will appear or what it will do when it does.”

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“May Alan Bradley live to be a hundred and write a new book every year, and may Flavia never grow up.”

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“Kudos to Amy Stewart and Constance Kopp. May there be many more sequels to follow.”

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“Dinah Jefferies uses the secrets held by a husband and wife to expose the prejudice and unfairness of the British colonial era. . . . an enjoyable read.”

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“For collectors, this book is a keeper.”

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“an absorbing read on many levels . . .”

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“an excellent choice for those who prefer a more complex cozy mystery than the usual offering. Highly recommended.”

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The 22nd title in Anne Perry’s fascinating and addictive William Monk series is an example of how a talented author can maintain a character’s freshness in a long running series.

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“As with the rest of Ian Rankin’s literary efforts, The Beat Goes On earns five stars out of five.”

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“The Bones of Paradise is everything a Western novel should be . . .”

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No one does spooky without the supernatural element better than Ruth Ware, and The Woman in Cabin 10 is proof for any who doubt it.

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“Five out of five stars for this debut novel.”

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Another entry in the growing genre of eco-fiction, Marrow Island by Alexis M. Smith tells a story of loss, grief, and attempts to heal both a damaged woman and a damaged land.

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Under the Harrow is eloquent without using overly descriptive narrative, and its psychological insight into Nora’s relationship with her sister is mesmerizing.”

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“[the authors] incorporate fact with fiction so effectively and so seamlessly that fans of thrillers will never trust again that the stories they read could not happen.”

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“Kudos to another compelling entry into the ranks of Nordic crime fiction.”

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“Recommended for anyone who enjoys a literary novel, werewolves and golems notwithstanding.”

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Based on the memoirs of Frances Conway, Enchanted Islands is a fictionalized account of one woman’s struggle to find a balance between her real life and the secrets she knows but cannot ac

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“a frightening and accurate portrait of a teenager in the grip of a devastating mental illness . . .”

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Charles Davis skewers Hitler and Mussolini in a witty satire that reveals the twisted personalities of two monsters whose acts of atrocity were fueled by their own inadequacies, both physical and m

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Whether one is speaking of the Pendergast series or the Gideon Crew novels, no writing team equals Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child at creating a spine-chilling, page-turning suspense story.

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“Con Lehane provides a fine story, strong and believable characters, and a wonderful setting.”

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“In a suspense novel that is the literary equivalent of Hitchcock’s Psycho, Lemaitre presents a harrowing look into the link between madness and evil.”

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“Sharon Guskin has burst onto the literary scene like an exploding star . . .”

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“Such complex characterizations are a hallmark of Robotham’s work, and it is a gift some of his peers in the suspense genre might wish they could equal.”

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The dynamic writing duo of Marcia Muller and Bill Pronzini add another winner to their lighthearted Carpenter and Quincannon mystery series.

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Charles Todd’s Inspector Ian Rutledge of Scotland Yard mystery series illustrates the psychological and physical toll paid by soldiers who fought in the trenches of World War I.

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“Fans of the genre will not be disappointed by this latest Irene Huss novel.”

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A gripping thriller featuring everyone’s favorite forensic scientist, The Steel Kiss by Jeffery Deaver also delivers a subtle warning of the dangers of overreliance on modern electronics.

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Gentleman sleuth Charles Lenox returns in his 13th adventure as a one of England’s first private detectives.

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A fascinating mystery set in the dusty Texas outback featuring a short, slightly overweight, cynical female sleuth who is as tough as boot leather and as determined as any gumshoe crafted by Raymon

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Not a religious novel, but a novel about religion, The Christos Mosaic by Vincent Czyz is a search for the roots of Christianity and the identity of Christ.

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“sure to appeal to fans of both history and fantasy.”

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Anne Perry’s Christmas novels are comfort food for the reader who wants a short mystery novel with a holiday theme.

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“an unexpected treasure.”

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“a PI novel that is as full-bodied as a fine bourbon and just as satisfying.”

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“A marvelous historical mystery, but not for those who want their violence candy-coated.”

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“a novel for those who like their suspense written in dark tones.”  

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“Fans of literary mysteries should love The Lower Quarter.”

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“a page-turning suspense novel with both dastardly characters and charming ones, a fascinating setting, and a mesmerizing story.”

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A delightful period piece of a mystery set in 1914, Girl Waits with Gun by Amy Stewart introduces Constance Kopp, eldest of three sisters, none of whom fit the conventional mold of feminin

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The Shadow of Seth is a book that even adult fans of noir will enjoy.”

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"both a first class mystery and a cultural experience."

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The Bottom by Howard Owen races along at breakneck speed, hardly pausing long enough to allow one to catch a breath.”

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“the Flemish setting and the unexpected plot twists make this an enjoyable read.”

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“requires concentration, but the rewards are worth the effort. Highly recommended.”

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“a rich historical tapestry of words.”

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“Grendel’s Game is a good first novel with a wonderful main character and vivid images of Southwestern Sweden.” 

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“Kudos to Mr. Watson. Second Life is an excellent novel that is highly recommended to fans of psychological suspense.”

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Dublin: 1841.

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“On a scale of one to five stars, Palace of Treason is a six.”

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“A suspenseful and entertaining read—but not at bedtime.”

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“Mitzner provides a surprise ending that will leave fans gasping in shock . . .”

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A former FBI agent, June Lyons returns to her hometown of Hopewell Falls, New York, to live with her father after her husband’s death.

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“A stunning psychological thriller, . . .”

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“a riveting tale of intrigue, murder, treason, and injustice that will appeal to readers who love both history and a literate mystery.”

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“highly recommended for all readers, not just those interested in the Golden Age of British crime writing.”

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“a classic tale of murder with enough twists and turns of plot to please a casual mystery reader . . .”

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“A well-written, traditional mystery that is as charming as its Southern Belle protagonist.”

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“a spy thriller that will raise your blood pressure and set your heart to pounding . . .”

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“Poignant sometimes to point of inducing tears, Be Safe, Love Mom is not easy reading.”

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“A stay-up-late-until-you-finish thriller that is one of Harlan Coben’s best.”

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“deserves a contemplative and educated readership appreciative of a story well told.”

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“the story succeeds on so many levels—characterization, descriptive narrative, an exciting plot—that one is enthralled . . .”

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“Conor Brady’s debut novel is a slice of history about Dublin, Ireland, and the Dublin Metropolitan police, intertwined with a first-rate murder mystery . . .”

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“Chief Superintendent Peter Diamond is a warm, witty, and wonderful creation by one of England’s most talented crime writers.”

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“Adrian McKinty mixes historical figures with fictional characters to create a mystery that reminds the reader of works by both Joseph Conrad and Herman Melville.”

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“So gripping the reader feels metaphorical hands around his throat, American Woman builds to a bloody, heart-stopping confrontation . . .

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“Not only is Hell with the Lid Blown Off an excellent mystery, it is also a portrait of early 20th century rural America when family was more important than any other part of life.

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“A taut, well-written suspense novel ending in a violent confrontation . . .”

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“The Gears have written an epic novel that combines the cultural history of Cahokia with the fast-paced narrative of a thriller to explore the all too human and universal dangers of greed a

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Long Man is a visceral novel that evokes a sense of time and place and of the people who both define and are defined by that setting. Beautifully written in spare prose . .

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Dust is a story of both Kenya and of Odidi and his family told in a rich, colorful narrative and numerous shifts from past to present in the lives of all the characters.”

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“. . . a well-written paranormal series that captures the imagination and leaves the reader panting in anticipation . . .”

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“. . . a literary achievement one might expect from a writer with an extensive blacklist of published works, not a novice . . .”

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“. . . a compelling story.”

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“. . . enough twists and turns and red herrings to please any mystery reader.”

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“. . . a very, very good book.”

Already an international bestseller, in its American debut Lineup by Israeli author Liad Shoham lives up to its hype.

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“. . . a terrifying ride . . .”

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“. . . a multitude of puzzles within puzzles.”

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“. . . both a literary mystery and a macabre thriller . . .”

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“. . . exciting, suspenseful, and filled with enough action to satisfy even readers of Clive Cussler and Tom Clancy.”

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What would your reaction be if you had fallen overboard into the Arctic Ocean in 1906 and reanimated in a lab in present-day Boston?

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“. . . the kind of compelling narrative that all historians should emulate.”

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“No one, attorney or not, can write a trial scene better than John Lescroat.”

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“. . . nail-biting, heart-pumping suspense . . . No Way Back is a masterful thriller . . .”

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It's summer in Paris, the city is full of tourists, mostly Americans, and all is right with Hugo Marston's world—until a young couple is shot dead in front of Jim Morrison's grave in the famous Pèr