Posts and articles on writing, publishing, working with professional editors, and more from Editorial Department president Ross Browne.

Patience Required / Patience Rewarded Editorial Analysis of Troubled Blood by Robert Galbraith

If you’re a fan of JK Rowling writing as Robert Galbraith, you’re probably well aware how much longer her latest release is than the other four books in the series.

My own first reaction to the size of the hefty tome—darn near 1,000 pages in hardcover—was mostly: Terrific! More of a good thing to look forward to. 

But I must confess to some trepidation as well. For me, one of the appeals of the mystery genre is […]

By |2021-05-11T16:15:08+00:00|Mystery, Mystery / Suspense, RSB, The Writer’s Craft|Comments Off on Patience Required / Patience Rewarded Editorial Analysis of Troubled Blood by Robert Galbraith

CASINO ROYALE, by Ian Fleming: A Most Pleasant Surprise Considering thriller craft and the delights of the unexpected in the first James Bond novel

Up until last week, one notable blind spot in my reading life was Ian Fleming’s James Bond series. I loved the movies of the Sean Connery and Roger Moore era but, unimpressed by a later book in the series (written by one of four authors who took the helm after Fleming died), decided that Bond was a character best enjoyed on the screen. It was the somewhat formulaic nature of the stories and lack of character depth in […]

By |2021-05-11T17:04:29+00:00|Book Reviews and Analysis, RSB, The Writer’s Craft, Thriller|Comments Off on CASINO ROYALE, by Ian Fleming: A Most Pleasant Surprise Considering thriller craft and the delights of the unexpected in the first James Bond novel

Editorial Analysis: WRECKED by Joe Ide Considering the pros and cons of irredeemable antagonists in crime fiction

I’m not exaggerating when I say the discovery of Joe Ide’s IQ series made an often-awful 2020 more bearable. Wrecked is the third book in this series starring the fiercely intelligent but lonely and isolated Isaiah Quintabe (“IQ”), who on first glance might resemble a modern-day Sherlock Holmes of Long Beach. In this story, Isaiah and his sidekick Dodson (kinda rhymes with Watson, doesn’t it?) help a reclusive artist find her long-lost mother and escape the wrath of five former soldiers determined […]

By |2021-02-24T16:02:31+00:00|Behind The Bestsellers, Mystery / Suspense, Recommended Reading, RSB, The Writer’s Craft|Comments Off on Editorial Analysis: WRECKED by Joe Ide Considering the pros and cons of irredeemable antagonists in crime fiction

The Sad, Honorable Life of Jack Reacher Considering Reacher's future in the hands of Andrew Child

October 27, 2020 brought two notes of bittersweet dichotomy for fans of the Jack Reacher series. On one hand, we had a new release to dig into, always a good thing in the eyes of “Reacher Creatures.” On the other, The Sentinel is the first book in the series whose byline Lee shares with his brother Andrew Child (AKA Andrew Grant) and one of the last in which Lee is expected to have much authorial involvement at all, as he prepares […]

By |2021-02-02T18:58:13+00:00|Miscellaneous, Mystery / Suspense, RSB, The Writer’s Craft|Comments Off on The Sad, Honorable Life of Jack Reacher Considering Reacher's future in the hands of Andrew Child

DARKLY DREAMING DEXTER, by Jeff Lindsay Considering pacing, plot, and story setup in the first 50 pages

Flap Copy: He’s handsome and charming, but something in his past has made him abide by a different set of rules. He’s a serial killer whose one golden rule makes him immensely likable: He only kills bad people.

Ross’s Take: Though Darkly Dreaming Dexter was a book that I feel could have been improved, there’s a good deal the author does quite well in terms of pacing, story setup, drawing readers into the world […]

By |2021-02-05T16:02:53+00:00|Book Reviews and Analysis, First 50, General, Mystery / Suspense, RSB, The Writer’s Craft|Comments Off on DARKLY DREAMING DEXTER, by Jeff Lindsay Considering pacing, plot, and story setup in the first 50 pages

THE CRIME WRITER, by Gregg Hurwitz Considering a special literary treat for writers and a masterful lesson in how to write mystery/suspense

If there were ever a novel that writers and editors could take special pleasure in devouring like candy, The Crime Writer by Gregg Hurwitz is it. Putting aside the clever plot device that makes the book so naturally irresistible to novelists, The Crime Writer is a smartly written novel that stands out as a role model of writing and storytelling craft in the mystery/suspense genre.

Factor in that it’s about a mystery writer who, with the help of his editor, uses the […]

By |2021-01-15T18:32:19+00:00|Behind The Bestsellers, Book Reviews and Analysis, General, Mystery / Suspense, Recommended Reading, RSB, The Writer’s Craft|Comments Off on THE CRIME WRITER, by Gregg Hurwitz Considering a special literary treat for writers and a masterful lesson in how to write mystery/suspense