If you are interested in blogging or want to promote your book, please contact E. B. Davis at writerswhokill@gmail.com.


February Interviews













2/5 Heather Weidner, Glitter, Glam, and Contraband
2/12 Rhys Bowen, Above The Bay of Angels
2/19 Elizabeth Penney, Hems & Homicide
2/26 Annette Dashofy, Under The Radar


Saturday Guest Bloggers:
2/1 Valerie Burns
2/8 Jeannette de Beauvoir
2/15 Kathryn Lane

WWK Bloggers: 2/22 Kait Carson, 1/28 & 1/29 Special Interviews with Agatha Nominees by Paula Gail Benson

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WWK is proud of our four Agatha nominees. Kaye George for Best Short Story--not her first time to be nominated, Connie Berry and Grace Topping for Best First Mystery Novel (wish they weren't having to compete against each other), and Annette Dashofy for Best Contemporary Novel--her fifth nomination!


Congratulations to our writers for the following publications:

Look for Kaye George and Margaret S. Hamilton's short stories in the new Mid-Century Murder by Darkhouse Books. Kaye's story is "Life and Death on the Road" and Margaret's story is titled "4BR/3.5BA Contemporary."


Kaye George's first novel in the Vintage Sweets mystery series, Revenge is Sweet, will be released on March 10th. Look for the interview here on March 11.


Grace Topping's second novel in Laura Bishop staging series, Staging Wars, will be released by Henery Press on April 28th. Look for the interview here on April 29th.


Don't miss Shari Randall's "The Queen of Christmas" available on at Amazon. Shari's holiday story for WWK was too long so she published it for our enjoyment. It's available for 99 cents or on Kindle Unlimited for free!


KM Rockwood's "The Society" and "To Die A Free Man; the Story of Joseph Bowers" are included in the BOULD Awards Anthology, which was released on November 19. KM won second place with a cash prize for "The Society." Congratulations, KM! Kaye George's "Meeting on the Funicular" is also in this anthology, which can be bought for 99 cents on Kindle until November 30.


Paula Gail Benson's story "Wisest, Swiftest, Kindest" appears in Love in the Lowcountry an anthology by the Lowcountry Romance Writers available 11/5 in e-book and print format on Amazon. The anthology includes fourteen stories all based in Charleston, South Carolina.


Kaye George's "Grist for the Mill" was published in A Murder of Crows anthology, edited by Sandra Murphy on October 9th.



Shari Randall will be writing again for St. Martin's, perhaps under a pseudonym. We look forward to reading Shari's Ice Cream Shop Mystery series debuting next year. Congratulations, Shari!

Susan Van Kirk's A Death At Tippett Pond was released on June 15th. Read E. B. Davis's interview with Susan.

Warren Bull's Abraham Lincoln: Seldom Told Stories was released. It is available at: GoRead: https://www.goread.com/book/abraham-lincoln-seldom-told-stories or at Amazon: https://tinyurl.com/ydaklx8p

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Monday, July 25, 2011

A Review-The Anatomy of Ghosts by Andrew Taylor

Andrew Taylor has won numerous awards, including CWA’s Cartier’s Diamond Dagger, Ellis Peter’s Historical Dagger and the John Creasey Memorial Award for the Best First Crime Novel, the Martin Beck Award, and he has been nominated for many other awards over his thirty year career. He has authored over twenty-five mystery novels. This review is of his latest book, The Anatomy of Ghosts. E. B. Davis


When it comes to ghosts, nothing much has changed in two hundred years. Taylor sets his story in Cambridge, England at the end of the eighteenth century in a fictitious college. Like the unchanging ghosts, the physical setting also provides continuity. The author advises readers that they may recognize the setting because he modeled it after a real college within the university. These elements remind the reader that the human condition never changes.

The story is primarily a mystery, one of murder, the other a death precipitated by immortal actions. Taylor offers the reader two sketchy scenes of the deaths before he introduces his main character, John Holdsworth—bookbinder, bookseller and printer by trade. The ghosts of his drowned son and wife plague him. After his business fails, he accepts a commission from a wealthy and influential widow whose son, attending college in Cambridge, has gone mad. Her ancestors founded the college, and her two goals for Holdsworth are to bring her son home restored and sane and to assess the college’s library.

Taylor adds romantic complications, lies, political rivalries, and class structure into his well mixed plot. Because these complications rely on human weakness, the reader has no doubt as to their authenticity. Goodness is measured by conscious self-inspection by characters who try to balance their desires against moral outcomes as they make choices. Holdsworth solves the murder by understanding the characters’ emotion and moral landscape. When he unearths the facts and puts his moral assessments of those involved together, he solves the mysteries.

Readers will identify with The Anatomy of Ghosts because the issues remain unchanged—are we to serve for the greater good or will our selfishness destroy those around us? Human conflict and guilt comprise the anatomy of our internal ghosts. But even though Taylor provides evidence that we haunt ourselves, he never proposes that the concept of external spectral spirits is invalid. Ghosts exist, and we will always be haunted.

9 comments:

Pauline Alldred said...

It's interesting that the moral question is whether we serve the common good or allow our selfish interests to destroy those around us. Often, once ghosts enter the picture, evil is externalized and even a person possessed who wants to harm others can't be blamed for his/her actions

E. B. Davis said...

Perhaps Pauline. But many of the ghosts are our own moral guides, either internal or external, reminding us of moral boundaries and keeping us safe. Whether or not ghosts can actually possess us is a question Taylor doesn't answer, just that they may exist. I'm not sure all ghosts are evil. Why they remain here is another question.

Kara Cerise said...

Interesting book! I had an unexplained presence when I was living in a college dorm. My roommate and I saw black whispy shapes, doors opened and closed on their own etc. Later we learned that a previous occupant had committed suicide. So, perhaps our ghost just wanted to be remembered.

E. B. Davis said...

OMG, Kara. And that didn't freak you out? It wouldn't have made me happy at all.

Marilyn Levinson said...

I have the book in my house, which is why I read your review. As soon as I finish the one I'm currently reading, I'll start THE ANATOMY OF GHOSTS.

E. B. Davis said...

You'll like it Marilyn. Taylor writes well and it quite subtle. Nothing substitutes for a good plot and this one is well done.

Warren Bull said...

Nice review of what sounds like a book well worth reading.

Kara Cerise said...

I admit that it was a scary experience, E.B.! My roommate and I did not want to be alone in our room. I heard that those sorts of things happened to other people who lived in that room until the college remodeled the dorm. Then it stopped. Hmmm

E. B. Davis said...

If it isn't the "same" place than maybe the spirit couldn't dwell in it or identify with it or haunt it or...something. Interesting story, though.