Beginning this year, EQMM—a prominent short story publisher with a 75-year history—began publishing six times a year. The issues are longer than the former single-month editions, and the policy was instituted undoubtedly to save mailing costs. I hope this doesn’t mean an eventual reduction in the number of stories EQMM publishes, because outlets for mystery/crime short stories are severely limited.
Judging by the quality of the May-June 2017 issue, there’s no shortage of entertaining content out there. Here are some of the stories I liked best:
- “Charcoal and Cherry,” by Zoe Z. Dean, in which an amateur sleuth teams up with a retired police detective to unravel a cold-case murder.
- “Rosalie Marx is Missing,” by Robert S. Levinson. A pair of amateur Las Vegas sleuths find a missing granddaughter. Lively banter.
- “Find and Replace,” by Marjorie Eccles, an increasingly hilarious (and suspicious) exchange of letters between a homeowner and a newspaper’s gardening expert.
- “Your Name Will Be Written in Lights,” by Jonathan Moore, author of last year’s excellent The Poison Artist. A show girl puts on the performance of her life.
- “In the Time of the Voodoo,” by John Lantigua, high-tension effort to protect a Miami immigrant from her past and the Tonton Macoute.
- “Angel Face,” by M.C. Lee, attention to detail may exonerate a wrongly convicted death row prisoner, in Florida, “a state where the statue of Blind Justice would be better suited standing in front of a Whac-A-Mole machine.”