cover image Mean Streets

Mean Streets

Jim Butcher, Simon R. Green, Kat Richardson, . . Roc, $15 (368pp) ISBN 978-0-451-46249-7

Readers will be delighted with this collection of original novellas tied to popular crime/fantasy series. The standout is Sniegoski’s “Noah’s Orphans,” in which angel PI Remy Chandler must solve the murder of the biblical Ark’s builder, whose battered corpse is found on an abandoned oil rig. Sniegoski manages to make a far-fetched setup both plausible and moving. Butcher’s “The Warrior” hints at a mysterious ongoing war, while wizard detective Harry Dresden solves a case with typical dry wit. Green employs darker humor in “The Difference a Day Makes,” in which PI John Taylor assists a woman who wandered into the dark world hidden within London, while Richardson’s “The Third Death of the Little Clay Dog” neatly merges noir conventions with a fantastical plot. All solid and suspenseful, these stories are sure to please. (Jan.)