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Stories 260 - 264

There's an entire T. Corraghesen Boyle anthology waiting to be written up, but I finished it while I was home and didn't see the sense in packing it just be able to comment on it.  Meantime, I read the latest issue of The Strand Magazine (http://www.strandmag.com/), a quarterly magazine aimed at the mystery genre with a mix of short stories, interviews and articles.  Not all of the stories could be categorized as the standard mystery/crime story, though.

260. The Visit by Ray Bradbury.  Short and to the point: what lengths are we willing to go to for one last chance to feel close to a loved one we've lost?  It's a two page story that packs Bradbury's usual emotional punch.

261. Animal Intelligence by Alexander McCall Smith.  I have not read any of Smith's well-known mysteries.  I did like this story though, one of those very whimsical mysteries that really captures that feeling we've all had: the cat is trying to kill me.

262. My Hobby by Tom Fabian.  I'm not a real big fan of serial killer fiction (although I loved Neil Gaiman's character The Corinthian and the serial killer convention in The Sandman).  This story manages to stride just the right line, narrated by a man who says he's not really a serial killer.  Self-delusion is the best kind, I guess.

263. The Case of the Crosby Murders by Gary Lovisi.  I think Sherlock Holmes has now had as many adventures as there were days in his life -- there's no other way for all of the stories about him to fit together.  This is one that tries to combine the Holmes canon with modern forensics-based TV shows.  Apparently, Holmes invented the concept of using blood spatter patterns to figure out who the criminals are.

264. The Big Switch by Mickey Spillane and Max Allan Collins.  Spillane left a handful of unfinished stories and novels with instructions for Collins to finish them.  This was one, a short Mike Hammer piece about a guy on death row who may not have committed the crime he's about to be executed for.

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