About Me

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Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada
I am a lawyer in Melfort, Saskatchewan, Canada who enjoys reading, especially mysteries. Since 2000 I have been writing personal book reviews. This blog includes my reviews, information on and interviews with authors and descriptions of mystery bookstores I have visited. I strive to review all Saskatchewan mysteries. Other Canadian mysteries are listed under the Rest of Canada. As a lawyer I am always interested in legal mysteries. I have a separate page for legal mysteries. Occasionally my reviews of legal mysteries comment on the legal reality of the mystery. You can follow the progression of my favourite authors with up to 15 reviews. Each year I select my favourites in "Bill's Best of ----". As well as current reviews I am posting reviews from 2000 to 2011. Below my most recent couple of posts are the posts of Saskatchewan mysteries I have reviewed alphabetically by author. If you only want a sentence or two description of the book and my recommendation when deciding whether to read the book look at the bold portion of the review. If you would like to email me the link to my email is on the profile page.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

What’s Happening in Canadian Crime Fiction

As an associate member of the Crime Writers of Canada I receive Crime Beat, the monthly newsletter, and Cool Canadian Crime, the quarterly list of book releases of Canadian written crime fiction.

In the first edition of Cool Canadian Crime the list actually covers the first half of 2013 and contains 38 books.

I am going to have to go looking for The Third Riel Conspiracy by Stephen Legault which was published this month. The publisher’s blurb on the CWC site states:
It is spring of 1885 and the Northwest Rebellion has broken out. Amid the chaos of the Battle of Batoche, a grisly act leaves Reuben Wake dead. A Metis man is arrested for the crime, but he claims innocence. When Durrant Wallace begins his investigation, he learns there are many who wanted Wake dead and uncovers a series of covert conspiracies surrounding Metis leader and prophet Louis Riel.
Since Batoche is about 125 km from where I live it is a Saskatchewan mystery before there was Saskatchewan. We became a province in 1905. In 1885 this part of Western Canada was a part of the Northwest Territories.
I regret to say I do not know anything about the author. On his website Legault is described as follows:

He is a full time conservation activist, writer, photographer and strategy consultant who lives in Canmore, Alberta with his wife Jenn, and two sons, Rio and Silas. He has been writing since 1988, and for nearly as long has been leading national and international conservation programs and organizations.

In May, I will be sure to getting two books.

As indicated in a recent post Anthony Bidulka’s first book in the Adam Saint series, When the Saints Go Marching In will be released. I had not heard of a disaster recovery specialist until I heard Anthony talking about the book last year at his book launch of Dos Equis.

Also in May is the next book in Robert Rotenberg’s Toronto legal mystery series, Stranglehold. From the blurb it appears to feature detective, Avi Greene. While Greene has been a significant character in the first three books the series has actually been focused on an ensemble group of lawyers. Unfortunately with a publication date of May 7 I will not be purchasing the book immediately as I leave on holidays the a few days before release date. Since I will be on a cruise I can hardly complain if I have to wait a few weeks. Still I may try to see if I can get an advance copy.

The biggest news next month is the release of the shortlists for the Arthur Ellis Awards simultaneously in four different events in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Ottawa.

The Toronto event will provide a wonderful array of authors:

Indigo, Manulife Centre, 55 Bloor St. W., Toronto from 7-9 p.m. Featuring Catherine Astolfo, Janet Bolin, Alison Bruce, Melodie Campbell, Sharon Crawford, Jill Downie, Nate Hendley, Rosemary McCracken, Robert Rotenberg, Howard Shrier, Simone St. James and Scott Thornley reading from their latest books. Guest speaker: Joy Fielding; Emcee: Jon C. Redfern. FREE! Cookies! Door prizes!

And who does not like cookies!

Lastly, the Bony Blithe Light Mystery Award shortlist includes books by 3 members of the CWC:

Janet Bolin, Threaded for Trouble (Berkley Prime Crime)
Elizabeth J. Duncan, A Small Hill to Die On (Minotaur)
Chris Laing, A Private Man (Seraphim

The Award is:

The Bloody Words Light Mystery Award is an annual juried literary prize, presented at the Bloody Words Mystery Conference for a “book that makes us smile.”

There is lots of great Canadian mystery reading ahead in 2013.


  1. Bill - Thanks for this update. I too am excited to read When the Saints Go Marching In. I'm very much looking forward to it. And Third Riel Conspiracy looks interesting too. And I'll be staying tuned for those shortlists too. Lots going on indeed!

  2. Margot: Thanks for the comment. The Third Riel Conspiracy is a mystery set during the only rebellion in Western Canada history.

  3. Bill, you are a great source of Canadian mysteries for me. I enjoyed this article. The series by Robert Rotenberg sounds interesting.

  4. TracyK: Thanks for the comment. Robert is a very good writer of legal mysteries.

  5. I can't wait to read your reviews of the new Anthony Bidulka book and Robert Rotenberg's, too, although other titles posted here intrigue me.

    Last year I read many Canadian mysteries. I'd like to do that this year, too, but my TBR list is humongous and I'm reading more slowly for some reason.

    I'll check in here for recommendations.

  6. Kathy D.: Thanks for the comment. I can hardly wait for May to come to read the books.

    I will keep doing my best to present reviews and information on Canadian mysteries.