Thursday, April 15, 2010

California Girl by T. Jefferson Parker

Our mystery group selection for April was California Girl by T. Jefferson Parker.  This 2004 Edgar Award winner follows two families over time and at its center is the murder of a girl from one of those families.

At first it seems like there is a "good" family and a "bad" family, but for me both families were just awful.  The rest of the book group did not feel that way.

We did agree that the book was more about the setting and times (late sixties for the most part) than about the crime.  It was one of those novels where there are many possible suspects, and much time is spent on each of those people, but again as reflections of the political and social upheaval of the sixties than about how they might be capable of committing a grisly crime.

I had a few recommendations for others authors the group might like if they enjoyed this novel:

Sarah Lovett
James Patterson
Ridley Pearson
Kathy Reichs
Robert Crais
Dennis Lehane
David Baldacci

I also thought they would like a list of other Edgar Award winners.  Here is a list from the Mystery Writers of America Edgars Database

Winners for Best Novel for All Years

Year Award Category Title Author's Name Publisher/Producer Notes

2009 Best Novel Blue Heaven C.J. Box St. Martin's Minotaur

2008 Best Novel Down River John Hart St. Martin's Minotaur

2007 Best Novel The Janissary Tree Jason Goodwin Sarah Crichton Books/FSG

2006 Best Novel Citizen Vince Jess Walter Regan Books

2005 Best Novel California Girl T. Jefferson Parker HarperCollins - William Morrow

2004 Best Novel Resurrection Men Ian Rankin Little, Brown

2003 Best Novel Winter and Night S.J. Rozan St. Martin's Minotaur

2002 Best Novel Silent Joe T. Jefferson Parker Hyperion

2001 Best Novel The Bottoms Joe R. Lansdale Mysterious Press

2000 Best Novel Bones Jan Burke Simon & Schuster

1999 Best Novel Mr. White's Confession Robert Clark Picador USA

1998 Best Novel Cimarron Rose James Lee Burke Hyperion

1997 Best Novel The Chatham School Affair Thomas H. Cook Bantam

1996 Best Novel Come to Grief Dick Francis Putnam

1995 Best Novel The Red Scream Mary Willis Walker Doubleday

1994 Best Novel The Sculptress Minette Walters St. Martin's Press

1993 Best Novel Bootlegger's Daughter Margaret Maron Mysterious Press

1992 Best Novel A Dance at the Slaughterhouse Lawrence Block Wm. Morrow

1991 Best Novel New Orleans Mourning Julie Smith St. Martin's Press

1990 Best Novel Black Cherry Blues James Lee Burke Little, Brown

1989 Best Novel A Cold Red Sunrise Stuart M. Kaminsky Scribners

1988 Best Novel Old Bones Aaron Elkins Mysterious Press

1987 Best Novel A Dark-Adapted Eye Barbara Vine Bantam

1986 Best Novel The Suspect L.R. Wright Viking

1985 Best Novel Briar Patch Ross Thomas Simon & Schuster

1984 Best Novel La Brava Elmore Leonard Arbor House

1983 Best Novel Billingsgate Shoal Rick Boyer Houghton Mifflin

1982 Best Novel Peregrine William Bayer Congdon & Lattes

1981 Best Novel Whip Hand Dick Francis Harper & Row

1980 Best Novel The Rheingold Route Arthur Maling Harper & Row

1979 Best Novel The Eye of the Needle Ken Follett Arbor House

1978 Best Novel Catch Me: Kill Me William H. Hallahan Bobbs-Merrill

1977 Best Novel Promised Land Robert B. Parker Houghton Mifflin

1976 Best Novel Hopscotch Brian Garfield M. Evans

1975 Best Novel Peter's Pence Jon Cleary Wm. Morrow

1974 Best Novel Dance Hall of the Dead Tony Hillerman Harper & Row

1973 Best Novel The Lingala Code Warren Kiefer Random House

1972 Best Novel The Day of the Jackal Frederick Forsyth Viking

1971 Best Novel The Laughing Policeman Maj Sjowall, Per Wahloo Pantheon

1970 Best Novel Forfeit Dick Francis Harper & Row

1969 Best Novel A Case of Need Jeffery Hudson World

1968 Best Novel God Save the Mark Donald E. Westlake Random House

1967 Best Novel The King of the Rainy Country Nicolas Freeling Harper & Row

1966 Best Novel The Quiller Memorandum Adam Hall Simon & Schuster

1965 Best Novel The Spy Who Came in from the Cold John le Carre Coward-McCann

1964 Best Novel The Light of Day Eric Ambler Knopf

1963 Best Novel Death and the Joyful Woman Ellis Peters Doubleday

1962 Best Novel Gideon's Fire J.J. Marric Harper

1961 Best Novel The Progress of a Crime Julian Symons Harper

1960 Best Novel The Hours Before Dawn Celia Fremlin Lippincott

1959 Best Novel The Eighth Circle Stanley Ellin Random House

1958 Best Novel Room to Swing Ed Lacy Harper

1957 Best Novel A Dram of Poison Charlotte Armstrong Coward-McCann

1956 Best Novel Beast in View Margaret Millar Random House

1955 Best Novel The Long Goodbye Raymond Chandler Houghton Mifflin

1954 Best Novel Beat Not the Bones Charlotte Jay Harper

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