cover image The Best American Mystery Stories 2010

The Best American Mystery Stories 2010

Edited by Lee Child, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt/Mariner, $14.95 paper (416p) ISBN 978-0-547-23746-6

The 20 short stories in the 14th edition of this "best of" series offer a wider variety than some of its predecessors. Sherlockians who have not yet encountered Lyndsay Faye will be more than pleased by her pastiche, "The Case of Colonel Warburton's Madness," which allows the sleuth to solve the mystery from an armchair. Jay Brandon makes clever use of his research into the history of San Antonio in "A Jury of His Peers," which centers on the Mexican Army's expulsion of all of the city's attorneys in 1842. Lynda Leidiger's "Tell Me" movingly portrays the horrific aftermath of a rape and attempted murder. Doug Alleyn's "An Early Christmas" proves that excellent traditional whodunits, which have been underrepresented in recent years, are still being written. Other contributors include Dennis Lehane, Phillip Margolin, and Jon Land. While this volume contains relatively few household names, the quality certainly doesn't suffer as a result. (Oct.)