The Poisoned Pen
The Temperature Spikes and So Does Our Event Schedule This Week. Wow!
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The Poisoned Pen


The Poisoned Pen

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Scottsdale, AZ



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Click on the title to order

Lisbeth Salander
Suddenly Ours...
Signed by the author copies  next week

Two Books Like None Other!!

The animal voices are fabulous
due in two weeks

Set in New Zealand
Remember Jasper Fforde's The Eyre Affair?
This is Dickens, not Bronte
Our August First Novel Book of the Month
A Pen Exclusive

Event and Other Books

starts a series with Nora Kelly and Corrie Swanson from the AXL Pendergast
Signed Tuesday
Full of exciting archaeology, science, and a possible treasure hunt

The Legal Thriller of the Year
Signed Thursday
May be the book of the year

The Swallows
Prep school is murder
Signed Friday

True Crime
Signed August 24 2 PM

A legal thriller
Signed August 24 2 PM

Signed August 26

Will Trent with Sara Linton
Atlanta crime
Signed August 30

another surprise book
now in stock

September #1 Indie Next Pick
Signed September 5
Our copies come with extra text by Krueger

On sale September 12

Starts a new series
in stock now and selling fast

Arizona Territory
Our August History/Mystery Book of the Month
in stock now

A thriller updating 1984 to the near future...and amazon
Terrific read
Signed copies the end of the month

Armand Gamache
on sale August 27

5 left in stock of the new Sister Fidelma Irish Medieval Mystery
A great series

Western Mystery
in stock now

1282 England at war with Wales
based on a real hanging
in stock now and selling fast

Signed by Ann Patchett
Ages 4-8
in stock, 4 left

restock, tip ins
only a few left in stock

A book for those battling mean girls, and for mean girls 
YA Dark Fantasy
in stock now for
summer reading
coming soon...
selling fast
amazing reviews

Lydia Chin & Bill Smith
in Mississippi Chinese community
in stock now
Signed September 24 with the new Jame Sallis

Rivers of London Series
only this one is Germany's
The Moselle
only 1 left

Terrific UK police procedural with dazzling forensics
in stock now

Happy Monday

Last week was a zinger here at The Pen with Box and Parker, aka CJ and TJ, flooring fans standing all the way to the front door. Patrick joined me in the interview which was hilarious but also inspiring for writers and readers.  

Be sure to catch it on our 
Facebook Live  or YouTube   channels.

Here we see the guys on their annual fishing, eating, and maybe writing gig (TJ on the left)

On Thursday bestseller and charmer Sandra Brown joined us for  the first time and she too nailed it for writers as well as readers. Again, catch her on our video.

Saturday was Romance Day... and delectable.

Now gear up for a terrific week with Preston and Child Tuesday night  (Lincoln by Skype), Irish super star Steve Cavanagh for his first appearance with a truly American thriller on Thursday, the amazing Lisa Lutz on Friday, and on Saturday reporter Hank Phillippi Ryan brings us her new thriller The Murder List and interviews True Crime podcaster Billy Jensen with his first book.

Here's a reminder again that you can listen to our podcasts on Google or on iTunes or  on Podbean. The most recent is one I recorded with Rhys on August 10 which previews her February 2020 book.

Do check our BLOG regularly. Lesa updates awards, news, and interviews. 

Much love to our social media team getting a boost from Rob.

Barbara and all The Pens

Find us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter 
Thank you for supporting The Poisoned Pen, frequently named Best Specialty Bookstore by the  New Times and by the  
Arizona Republic , one of 45 Great American Indie Bookstores 2013; Best Locally Owned and Operated Business: Scottsdale 2016; and Poisoned Pen Press, winner of the 2010 Ellery Queen Award from the Mystery Writers of America and named the 2011 Best Local Publisher by the  Arizona Republic and now the mystery imprint at Sourcebooks.
The August Booknews
 Staff Picks, Paperback Picks, New Books Lists

The August Booknews sizzles.

Please note I made one goof too late to correct: the September Ann Cleeves title that is our September British Crime Book of the Month is The Long Call, a new series start, not the last Shetland mystery.

Here are some August Staff Picks

Here are our August Paperback Picks

Do browse our  Web Store . New additions are frequently made to upcoming books and events. I've added loads of titles to Coming Soon... a very big fall looms.

Please remember: 
See It Here. Buy It Here.

Thank you for your business. I remind all of you reading this, that it only takes buying one book a month by each of you to keep us here!  Or merchandise, or a gift card. Or, a new audio book option.

Our August Books of the Month
British Crime Club One unsigned hardcover or paperback per month
North, Alex. The Whisper Man

Cozy Crimes Club One unsigned hardcover or paperback per month

Discovery Club  One paperback or hardcover per month
Pobi, Robert. City of Windows
The best book we could not get signed this year (he's Canadian)

First Mystery Club  One Signed First per month

Think Jasper Fforde's The Eyre Affair but Dickens, not Bronte, a truly imaginative delight set in and coming from New Zealand

Hardboiled Crime Club  One signed First per month 
Parker, T Jefferson. The Last Good Guy

History/Mystery Club  One Signed First per month 
Obreht, Tea. Inland (Random $27)
Arizona Territory 1893

History Paperback  One per month
Penrose, Andrea. Murder at Half Moon Gate

Modern First Editions  One Signed First per month
Russo, Richard. Chances Are... SOLD OUT

SciFi/Fantasy/Horror Club  One Signed First per month
Hart, Rob. The Warehouse
A Don't Miss It -- 1984 for today

Surprise Me! Club  One Signed First Per Month
Slaughter, Karin. The Last Widow

Thriller Club  One Signed First per month
Cavanagh, Steve. Thirteen

A legal thriller... with the killer on the jury 

Preston & Child
Tuesday 7:00 PM 
at The Pen
Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child  sign  Old Bones  (Grand Central $28)
Nora Kelly #1 Signed by both authors
Lincoln Child participates by Skype

The authors have retired Gideon Crew, his ultimate fate battling his disease unknown (which is nice, we can hope he wins...) and launch a new series with two of my favorite characters from the AXL Pendergast thrillers: archeologist Nora Kelly and young Corrie Swanson, now a newly minted FBI agent having aced boot camp but needing seasoning. What better test to give them both than to have them apply science and psychology to an 1847-48 tragedy while upping the stakes with imaginative bonus plot lines?
The historical event is the tragedy that befell the Donner   Party while it made a push to cross the Sierras into California. The ill-advised route it chose brought disaster when a blizzard befell the settlers. Marooned in some 20 feet of snow they began to starve, some died and, as modern archaeological excavations have confirmed, some ate the others to survive. If you think this isn't the stuff for fiction, ponder the success of Yann Martel's bestseller and movie The Life of Pi in 2002.

 So being Preston and Child the authors ask, what if there were a third camp, its location lost to time?

I love the bones of the plot, the superb depiction of archaeologists at work and the other science behind events. The two strong female protagonists share a dynamic reminiscent of that between Pendergast and his friend on the NYPD, Vincent D'Agosta. So it connects to the Pendergast-verse. Think part Stephen King but rooted in reality. If you have not read Preston and Child, Old Bones is an excellent place to begin.

AND do not miss the new edition with lots of photos of Doug's 1995 classic, Talking to the Ground ($17). We sold out of it twice but have a new supply for you. This is a tour of Navajo Country on horseback that only the truly nuts would undertake...

Steve Cavanagh
Thursday 7:00 PM
Steve Cavanagh  signs  Thirteen  (Flatiron $26.99)
(Love the brilliant book jacket design playing with 13)

It's a courtroom drama wrapped around a serial killer chiller.

Michael Connelly says, "Books this ingenious don't come along very often."

Here's the rave in the NY Times. The Republic ran a different one yesterday

"Just asking: If I can't get chosen for jury duty in a no-drama lawsuit, how come a serial killer manages to be seated in a double murder case? According to Steve Cavanagh's wickedly clever courtroom drama, what it takes is an ingenious mind and a supreme feat of engineering. That plus the gall to murder any potential jurors who stand in your way.
Joshua Kane is one of those monsters whose wicked brilliance makes them unforgettable. After targeting a prospective juror who meets his needs, Kane executes a masterful maneuver to kill this innocent nobody, steal his jury summons and impersonate him at what's being called "the murder trial of the century." Why Kane would want to adjudicate the fate of Robert Solomon, a movie star accused of murdering his wife and his bodyguard, is an open question at this point. But the young actor's defense team includes Eddie Flynn, an attorney who picked up some neat tricks in his 10 years as a con artist, so there's hope for the poor guy.

To be sure, the serial killer gets all the best scenes and much of the choicest language...we learn in one of a series of monologues we could live without but are shamefully willing to share."

I add for our August Thriller Book of the Month: Set in bustling Manhattan, and told with prose as visceral and gritty as New York City's dark criminal underbelly, THIRTEEN begins with what appears to be a senseless act of violence. It's anything but. ....

As the Trial of the Century begins, and with the evidence strong against his innocent movie-star client, Flynn and a quirky cast of P.I.s and FBI agents urgently set out to uncover the real killer. As it turns out, he's hiding in plain sight as juror number thirteen. And he killed to be there.
Lisa Lutz
Friday 7:00 PM
Lisa Lutz  signs  The Swallows  (Ballantine $27)

A teacher at a New England prep school ignites a gender war-with deadly consequences that show how silence can tamp down decency. Think Donna Tartt 2019

The Indie Next Pick: "Stonebridge Academy, a private prep school of about 400 students located on 50 acres of dense woods, was to be the setting for Alex Witt's second try at being an instructor. Her first ended with a memory that made her skin crawl. Unfortunately, her time at Stonebridge would prove to be even more disturbing. Remember the age-old adage, 'Boys will be boys'? With The Swallows, we have a new adage: 'Girls will be tougher than boys.' This is a powerfully serious yet humorous look at the battle between the sexes and a timely and important book for all readers."

Lisa writes to me this is one of her weird books but in fact it's a take-no-prisoners look at... privilege and more.
Hank Phillippi Ryan
Billy Jensen
Saturday 2:00 PM
Ticketed Event  $28 admits one person with a choice of either book  Click to purchase or call 480 947 2974

Extra copies of both will be for sale. True Crime podcaster Jensen has so many fans we can't risk having anyone out in the parking lot in the heat. 

Billy Jensen  signs  Chase Darkness with Me  (Sourcebooks $25.99)

Journalist Billy Jensen spent fifteen years investigating unsolved murders, fighting for the families of victims. Every story he wrote had one thing in common-they didn't have an ending. The killer was still out there. But after the sudden death of a friend, crime writer and author of I'll Be Gone in the Dark, Michelle McNamara, Billy got fed up. Following a dark night, he came up with a plan. A plan to investigate past the point when the cops had given up. A plan to solve the murders himself. Gripping, complex, unforgettable, Chase Darkness with Me is an examination of the evil forces that walk among us, illustrating a novel way to catch those killers, and a true-crime narrative unlike any you've read before.

Robert Anglen will review Jensen's book on Thursday in the Arizona Republic. His reviews are always fabulous! Another reason we urge you to buy tickets now!

Hank Phillippi Ryan  signs  The Murder List  (Forge $27.99)

CNN named it an Ultimate Beach Read and the Library Journal rave starred review calls it "a  riveting must read!"

Harvard Law student Rachel North accepts an internship with Martha Gardiner, the first assistant district attorney of Middlesex County, Mass. This decision raises tensions with Rachel's husband, Jack Kirkland, a preeminent Boston defense attorney who recently lost a high-profile murder case to Martha. Martha throws Rachel into the middle of a fresh homicide case, the killing of nurse Tassie Lyle, implausibly having her take an active role in the investigation. The inquiry soon zeroes in on a pizza deliveryman who was a hospital patient of the victim's and who may have been working with her to sell drugs. The action is interrupted first by flashbacks to Rachel's previous life as a political aide to Thomas Rafferty, the president of the state senate, who stops by her apartment late at night to leave an envelope with her for safekeeping

Why will this event be so amazing?

Ryan is the on-air investigative reporter for Boston's WHDH-TV. She's won 36 EMMYs, 14 Edward R. Murrow awards and dozens of other honors for her groundbreaking journalism.  

A nationally bestselling author of 11 mystery novels, Hank has also won multiple prestigious awards for her crime fiction: five Agathas, three Anthonys, the Daphne, two Macavitys, and the coveted Mary Higgins Clark Award. Her novels have been named Best Thrillers of the Year by Library Journal, New York Post, BOOKBUB, PopSugar, Real Simple Magazine and others

Jensen is a True Crime podcaster whose book tells you among other things about The Golden State Killer book and what happened when the author prematurely died.... 

Her book is fiction. His book...isn't.

Don't Miss These New Books

Delaney, JP. The Perfect Wife (Random $27).
This is a seriously good and provoking book

Abbie wakes in a hospital bed with no memory of how she got there. The man by her side explains that he's her husband. He's a titan of the tech world, the founder of one of Silicon Valley's most innovative startups...

The NY Times: Abbie Cullen, the heroine of JP Delaney's mind-bending novel is a beautiful woman, a gifted artist and a loving spouse. But she can't compete with the flawless works of artificial intelligence her husband, Tim, designs for Scott Robotics. Nor is it to her advantage when Tim creates a pliable replicant with all her endowments and none of her flaws. Who was it who said, "There is surely nothing finer than to educate a young thing for oneself"? Oh, right. Hitler.

Delaney takes domestic suspense beyond its comfort zone. To be sure, there's romantic tension, marital discord, even betrayal, as well as the demands of caring for a severely autistic child. But there are other issues to chew on: the worship of beauty and the demand for perfection, the ethics of artificial intelligence, the moral responsibilities of playing God. Not to mention the quandary that arises when a robot develops a soul, a real problem when "people don't want their robots to have feelings."

Jackson, Joshilyn (Morrow $26.99 SIGNED)
Jackson weaves a masterful mystery with unexpected twists and turns on every page. The story follows Amy Whey, a Florida housewife with a dark secret safely buried in the past until a stranger shows up for her neighborhood book club and starts a game that hurtles her back into her deepest, most hidden secrets. This story kept me guessing until the very end and still managed to surprise me," says the Indie Next Pick of a beach read about a diving instructor who comfortable life as a devoted wife and mother in Pensacola, Florida. Then one night, a mystifying and charming new neighbor, Angelica Roux, arrives unannounced at Amy's door to join her book club. Roux takes over the book club and shifts the focus to playing a scandalous version of the game Never Have I Ever, and that's when Amy realizes that Roux knows her darkest secret. So what do we have here: a friend? a blackmailer? And what will Amy do either way?
North, Alex. The Whisper Man (Celdadon $26.99). Rave reviews pour in for our British Crime Book of the Month

"A creepy, sinister, can't-put-it-down story of a town that survives and then relives the crimes of a child serial killer. For those who love psychological thrillers (with the absence of gore but plenty of plot twists and turns), The Whisper Man is a grand ride into the minds of those who kill and those who are victims. You'll find yourself looking over your shoulder when reading this book. Don't stand too close to an open window..."

Parker, T. Jefferson. The Last Good Guy (Putnam $27). Our copies of Parker and Box come with a photo of the authors taken on one of their joint fishing trips

I can't resist this one from The NY Times too

"There are some terrific villains to boo in this adrenaline-charged adventure involving a decommissioned nuclear generating station, "its spent fuel rods cooling in their casks. Cooling for the next 100,000 years. Protected from earthquake, tsunami, thieves and terrorists" by a dicey security company. But we keep coming back to Ford, a former Marine who is plenty tough, but gentle enough to track down a teenage runaway last seen in the company of her bad-news boyfriend. 'It's a weakness in my line of work, hoping that people are telling the truth,' admits Ford, who's the kind of guy you'd trust with both a 14-year-old girl and a nuclear reactor."

Parking, Drinks & Dining
and a generous offer from Arcadia Farms Cafe
We suggest when you can you come early to The Pen (chairs go down around 5:00 PM or 1:00 PM for afternoon events), reserve your seat(s), and explore our vibrant Old Town Scottsdale neighborhood.

Parking is more difficult sometimes because of the restaurants (editorial comment -- the City of Scottsdale's parking policies suck!). We've given you locations beyond our parking lot. 
Search for them under Parking

Good News: Arcadia Farms Cafe has generously offered us its parking for evening events when needed. You can also park just south of our lot between the alley and Main Street.

One reason we don't have a cafe or bar in The Pen is there isn't enough dedicated parking to allow one.

Enjoy --there are all sorts of food and beverages on offer.
Our August Calendar

Ticketed Event $28 admits one person with a choice of either book
Billy Jensen signs Chase Darkness with Me (Sourcebooks $25.99)
Hank Phillippi Ryan signs The Murder List (Forge $27.99)
Extra copies of both will be for sale
Bryn Greenwood signs The Reckless Oath We Made (Putnam $26)
Karin Slaughter signs The Last Widow (Morrow $27.99)
Will Trent
Hardboiled Crime: Thursday August 29 7:00 PM
Dennis, Ralph. Atlanta Deathwatch ($16.99)

More Ticketed Events


Craig Johnson signs Land of Wolves (Viking 28$)

Our 30th Birthday!

Joe Hill in conversation with Leslie S. Klinger
and introducing the Haunted Library Series debuting in January

Hill signs Full Throttle (Morrow $27.99)

Klinger signs
The New Annotated H P Lovecraft:Beyond Arkham
(Norton $39.95)

Can't attend? Please order books in the usual way.
Our September Calendar

Stephen Coonts signs The Russia Account (Regnery $27.99)
Coonts will be joined by 3 former CIA agents turned authors
Dave Austin signs Tehran's Vengeance ($12/99)
Thomas Pecora signs Guardian : Life in the Crosshairs of the CIA's War on Terror (Post Hill Press $27.99)
Mike Trott signs The Protected (Archway $29.95)
William Kent Krueger signs This Tender Land (Atria $27)
A coming of age story; think Huck Finn
Our copies come with an extra written by Kent just for you
Jenn McKinlay signs A Word to the Wise (Berkley $26)
A Library Lovers Mystery
Poisoned Pen Press Party with giveaways and treats
Sara Johnson signs her debut Molten Mud Murder (Sourcebooks $15.95)
American forensics specialist in New Zealand
Thomas Kies signs Graveyard Bay (Sourcebooks $26.99)
Reporter Geneva Chase
Katayoun Medhat signs
Navajo Police Procedural

Andrew Gross signs The Fifth Column (St Martins $28.99)
WWII New York City thriller
TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 17 7:00 PM Book Launch
Nevada Barr signs What Rose Forgot (St Martins $28.99)
A thriller
Linwood Barclay signs Elevator Pitch (Morrow $26.99)
Ticketed Event $32 admits one with one book; $37 admits two with one book
Craig Johnson signs Land of Wolves (Viking $28)
Sheriff Walt Longmire
Paddy Hirsch signs Hudson's Kill (Forge $25.99)
Justice Flanagan 1803 New York City
Publication Party for James Sallis
SJ Rozan signs  Paper Son (Pegasus $25.95)
Lydia Chin & Bill Smith
James Sallis signs  Sarah Jane (Soho $23.95)
T. Greenwood signs Keeping Lucy (St Martins $27.99)
Suspense based on a true story of a Downs child
Kyle Mills signs Vince Flynn Lethal Agent (Atria $28.99)
Mitch Rapp
Mary Anna Evans signs  Catacombs (Sourcebooks $26.95 and $15.95)
Faye Longchamp Archaeology Mysteries
Poisoned Pen Press Party with giveaways and treats
Warren Easley signs  No Way to Die (Sourcebooks $26.95 and $15.95)
Lawyer Cal Claxton Oregon Mysteries
Dennis Palumbo signs  Head Wounds (Sourcebooks $15.95
Psychologist Dr. Daniel Rinaldo
And Mark Coggins sign The Dead Beat Scroll (Down & Out Books $17.95)

MONDAY SEPTEMBER 30 7:00 PM Book Launch
John Sandford signs Bloody Genius (Putnam $29)
Our copies come with an exclusive custom-designed extra that fits 
The Body in the Library of Virgil Flowers #12
JA Jance signs Sins of the Fathers (Harper $26.99
JP Beaumont
TICKETED EVENT Limited to 150
Reception at Arcadia Farms Catering 6:00 PM
Program 7:00 PM
Joe Hill signs Full Throttle: Stories (Harper $27.99)
Leslie S. Klinger signs The New Annotated HP Lovecraft: Beyond Arkham (Norton $39.95) and introduces 2020's The Haunted Library Series (horror)
Please buy your copy from The Pen. Anyone welcome but remember you risk spoilers if you don't read the selection in advance

Coffee & Crime : Saturday September 14 10:30 AM
Rice, Craig. Home Sweet Homicide ($15.95)

SciFi Friday : September 20 7:00 PM
Lee, Fonda. Jade City ($15.95)

Croak & Dagger : Saturday September 21 10:30 AM
Turton, Stuart. The 71/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle ($16.99)

Hardboiled Crime: Wednesday September 25 7:00 PM
Welch, James. The Death of Jim Loney ($15)

What Do You Listen To This Fall with

It's easy, just visit our webstore and search for the title you're interested in.  If has it available you'll see a new 
Buy The Audiobook button on the same page where you order the book. 

More info from can be found by clicking on the link.

Mystery-of-the-Month Club 

Looking for something new to read each month and aren't sure what to choose?  Let us help... And it makes a great gift for Dad!
The Mystery-of-the-Month Club is individually tailored to each customer's specific tastes.  Just let us know what kinds of mysteries you enjoy, whether your looking for signed hardcover books or paperbacks, and we'll take it from there!
For more information, drop Patrick King a line at
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The Poisoned Pen
Is a full service general bookstore with a specialty in fiction of all kinds, and in history. When books are not on our shelves we can order them for you quickly or, if British, it takes a little longer.

Email any requests to It's all part of the experience. Thank you for supporting The Poisoned Pen.

Winner, 2001 Raven Award from the Mystery Writers of America! Winner,
2012 The Arizona Republic and the New Times Best of Phoenix and Best of Scottsdale, Best Bookstore! 2013 Arizona Republic's Critics' Choice and Reader's Choice Best Specialty Bookstore
12-time Nominee, Publishers Weekly's Bookseller of the Year
Winner, James Patterson Page-Turner Award
Poisoned Pen Press, Winner, The 2010 Ellery Queen Award from The Mystery Writers of America
Member of the Crime Writers of Canada, British Crime Writers Association, The American Booksellers Association,