Tuesday, February 19, 2013

This Month in Intrigue History...

A few weeks ago I picked up an old Intrigue favorite of mine, Stella Cameron's Some Die Telling and realized it came out exactly twenty-five years ago this month. This got me thinking about what else came out from Intrigue twenty or twenty-five years ago this month, and I discovered those were some great months, with some classic titles by great authors. Here's a look back:

Twenty-five years ago this month, in February 1988, actually brought two old favorites of mine. Stella Cameron's deliciously titled Some Die Telling sent an American woman to London where she met an enigmatic Englishman, and was soon caught up in a mystery involving old secrets...and present-day murder.

The job was waiting but her sister wasn't

Ellen Shaw arrived in London, England, to take her ideal job--managing an antiquarian bookshop--and met her ideal man. Strong and solid, warm and loving, Hugh Weston, the shop's owner, was a powerful man. But could she trust him?

Ellen's sister had disappeared, and the explanations for her absence didn't hold up. Hugh had his own theory. His grandmother was dead--murdered. Believing her sister was behind it, he had to suspect Ellen, too.

But as death began to stalk her through the streets of London and Ellen's concern slowly changed into terror, Hugh could not just stand by.

Meanwhile, Regan Forest told a very unique tale in A Walking Shadow, as the cartoonist heroine found adventure and romance in a Western ghost town. I also think it's cool to see a gray-haired hero, something you don't see everyday!

Terry's working vacation nearly scared her to death

The ghost town of Jerome, Arizona, was an eerie combination of decaying buildings and gloom-shrouded streets. Pleased to have found the perfect setting for her latest comic strip, Terry Morse set up shop in the town's infamous haunted house, where events took a ghastly turn.

Terry's handsome, mysterious landlord had a one-word explanation for the fearsome shrieks and unearthly chill: ghosts. But when Terry was shadowed by a sinister figure dressed in black, Mike Calhoun revealed that Terry had unwittingly invoked a menace far greater than any that lay beyond the grave.

Twenty years ago this month, February 1993, was also a great month for the line. Rebecca York's Hopscotch took readers on an adventure in England and Ireland, with a heroine who couldn't trust her own memories of what was real and what wasn't.

Who was Jason Zacharias?

That riddle was the key to Noel Emery's frightening predicament. Ever since she'd arrived in Britain, she'd been plunged into chaos, pursued by assassins. And her guardian angel was a seasoned veteran of murder...and a man who claimed to be her husband.

Had Noel once shared lovers' caresses with the dark, dangerous Jason Zacharias? Or was the straining sensuality between them just an illusion? The answer was locked in the best of all hiding places--her mind. A mind that now scrambled fantasy and memory.

Noel's only way out of the maelstrom was to trust her heart--and her life--to a man who pretended to be a protector but who looked every inch a predator.

M.J. Rodgers' To Die For introduced another of the author's strong, independent heroines. In this case a determined lady coroner went toe-to-toe with a tough police detective as they worked to solve a puzzling murder case involving a tangle of old secrets, in a mystery to truly keep readers guessing.

Even in death she was beautiful

Chief Detective Gabe Kincaid had known some gorgeous dames in his day, but the sight of Jennifer Madden's perfect dead body was breathtaking. After all, she was an ex-stripper turned society grand dame.

Eden Island's sensational murder case was sizzling, and one Gabe would crack. But he wasn't the only one who wanted in. The new deputy coroner, Jane Hardesty, was becoming a thorn in his side as she weaseled her way into his investigation.

Eden Island's closed society of beautiful people was turning into a hotbed of gossip and secrets. And when Jane became a target for death, Gabe had no choice but to keep her close--in more ways than one.

But the closer they got, so did their faceless murderer. One of Eden Island's beautiful people.

Three years after the original Fear Familiar, Caroline Burnes' stories about the crime-solving cat detective officially became a series with the release of the second Familiar mystery, Too Familiar:

They say cats have nine lives...

An ominous black cat crossed paths with Cassandra McBeth just as she discovered that her nightmares were tomorrow's headlines. A night stalker was about to bring terror to Gatlinburg, Tennessee...and to Cassandra. She alone knew what was to come, but not how to stop it. 

Only one lone man, a stranger, believed in her vision. Adam Raleigh was on her side, though the town was against them. 

But what was the psychic link between the woman of his dreams and the fiend of her nightmares? The electrifying answer came from Familiar...a mysterious black cat.

And finally Alice Harron Orr wrapped the month with a mystery set among the backdrop of a Cold Summer:

Nature had gone awry... 

When Caro Hardin returned to the isolated North country as she'd vowed she never would, the friend she'd come to rescue had vanished. All that remained was an uncannily cool July - and the object of a school-days crush on whom Caro hoped to rely. 

Under usual circumstances, Mike Schaeffer wanted nothing more than to reestablish romantic ties with Caro, but now a murderer was in their midst...and Caro could possibly provide the psychological profile, the much-needed map of the deranged madman's mental terrain. 

Only a kiss shared years ago by Mike and Caro offered hope. But while they sought to illuminate the dark recesses of the murderer's mind, even the great power of love began to fail. And it seemed Mike and Caro might not survive the cold summer...nor the even colder killer.

Anyone else remember any of these classics? Have any favorites you'd like to mention?


  1. I don't remember these, but it is possible they passed my way. Fabulous to look at now.

  2. I had so many old Intrigues in my collection that I lost in the tornado. I love the Fear Familiar series and I had them all. Now I'm trying to find them in used stores and online.

  3. Laura AKA Loves 2 Read RomanceFebruary 19, 2013 at 7:52 PM

    I don't have very many old intrigues but I do have a few of the Fear Familiar series.

  4. I have a few older books on my shelf that my grandmother's sister gave to me years and years ago... they helped kick off my love for romances! :)

  5. I have a ton of old Intrigues including almost all these titles. I even have books from 1984 and 1985 Anne Stuart and Jenna Ryan are two of my very favorite early Intrigue authors.

  6. I have the Fear Familiar series as well.