Sally's Staff Picks

Sally Woods at Murder By The Book since 2011

I read a bit of everything, so I've tried to include both old and new favorites. That said, my favorite genre is dystopian. Though,sometimes I think I read too much of it as I can get obsessed. Two of my favs are in this stack. ( I had to stop watching The Walking Dead when I started becoming too aware of my surroundings and looking for escape routes.)

Other favorite authors are Kevin Brockmeier, whose writing makes me happy, and Marianne Wiggins whose Evidence of Things Unseen is possibly my favorite book of all time.

Mystery wise, Tana French has a wonderful Irish series. I always look forward to anything by Laura Lippman and Megan Abbott. I'm trying to catch up on women crime writers from the 40's and 50's, the collection here is incredible. David Joy. His writing will stop you in your tracks with its beauty.

Sally's 2019 Top "10":

1. The Testaments by Margaret Atwood
2. Lady in the Lake by Laura Lippman
3. The Butterfly Girl by Rene Denfeld
4. We Were Killers Once by Becky Masterman
5. The River by Peter Heller
6. Curious Toys by Elizabeth Hand
7. The Institute by Stephen King
8. Theme Music by T. Marie Vandelly
9. Tear it Down by Nick Petrie
10. A Cosmology of Monsters by Shaun Hamill
11. Ordinary Grace by William Kent Krueger

Favorite Short Story Collections:
Full Throttle by Joe Hill
Growing Things by Paul Tremblay

Favorite Re-Reads

A Grave Talent by Laurie R. King
Salem's Lot by Stephen King
An Elderly Lady is Up to No Good by Helene Turnsten

Check out Sally's Recommendations Playlist on the MBTB YouTube channel.

Staff Pick Badge
When These Mountains Burn Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780525536888
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons - August 18th, 2020

David Joy does it again with this beautifully told story about three men, from both sides of the law, trying desperately  to rid their part of the Appalachians from the opioid epidemic that has overtaken their part of the world. 

David is one of my favorites and this just may be my number one book of the year. - Sally


Staff Pick Badge
The Two Mrs. Carlyles Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780525539209
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons - July 28th, 2020

A wonderful, sometimes spooky, story about three  young women in the early 1900's trying to start new lives.  Afterc oming  into wealth after the 1906 earthquake, the story really takes off.   Violet marries Harry Carlyle and none of their lives are quite the same.   I throughly  enjoyed The Two Mrs Carlyles

Definitely for fans of Rebecca. - Sally


Staff Pick Badge
One by One Cover Image
$27.99
ISBN: 9781501188817
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Gallery/Scout Press - September 8th, 2020

An excellent locked location mystery, One By One is filled with a sense of dread and anticipation  of who or what is next. 

An honest-to-God page turner with a nod to the queen, Agatha Christie.

Highly recommended! - Sally


Staff Pick Badge
Behind the Horror: True Stories That Inspired Horror Movies Cover Image
$14.99
ISBN: 9781465492388
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: DK - July 28th, 2020

This book has the origin stories of all your favorite scary movies, including  Psycho, The Exorcist, The Amityville Horror, The Silence of the Lambs and Scream. Just  to name a few.  A great book to have on your bedside table. - Sally


Staff Pick Badge
The Testaments: A Novel Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9780525562627
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Anchor - September 1st, 2020

Newly out in paperback, The  Testaments is the sequel to The Handmaid's Tale. Set 15 years  after The Handmaid's Tale, one of the narrators is Aunt Lydia. 

I found The Testaments a fascinating  story, we learn about the inner workings of Gilead and the benefits of playing  a very long game. Ultimately, against all odds, I found The Testaments to be a story of hope.   - Sally