New York Times bestselling author Lisa Scottoline is the guest editor for the 2013 edition of the annual Best American Mystery Stories collection. She and series editor Otto Penzler have collected 20 stores covering ground from classic “who-dun-its” with surprise twists to hard-bitten detective tales. No two stories are the same, and they each manage to offer great characters in compelling situations.
The writers who contribute to this collection present stories within typical mystery milieus but with a fresh perspective and engaging characters. That keeps the pages turning as you follow these men and women and the stakes at hand. The stories range from the more cerebral to the more emotional to the down-and-dirty it’s-all-about-the-money.
The benefit of a good short story is how it cuts quickly to the action and deletes all the content that simply doesn’t matter. Each of these 20 stories delivers the goods clearly and incisively.
Each author on display comes from a unique background and corner of North America. Each has experienced success in some fashion, including Maurine Dallas Watkins—author of Chicago—and Joyce Carol Oates, who was a previous guest editor for this series.
Mystery and crime fiction fans will find much to enjoy in this collection, while the uninitiated will find opportunity for new pleasures in the mystery genre.