A Trace of Smoke - Tor/Forge Blog



Hannah Vogel Sweepstakes

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We have five sets of the first three Hannah Vogel books to give away. To enter for the chance to win, comment below and tell us if you’re a history buff this week!

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. You must be 18 or older and a legal resident of the 50 United States or D.C. to enter. Promotion begins May 14, 2012 at 10:00 a.m. ET. and ends May 18, 2012, 12:00 p.m. ET. Void in Puerto Rico and wherever prohibited by law. Please see full details and official rules go here. Sponsor: Tom Doherty Associates, LLC.

A Trace of Smoke wins the Macavity Award

A Trace of Smoke wins the Macavity Award

Image Placeholder of - 20Rebecca Cantrell has won the 2010 Macavity Award (in the Best Historical Mystery category) for A TRACE OF SMOKE!


Even though hardened crime reporter Hannah Vogel knows all too well how tough it is to survive in 1931 Berlin, she is devastated when she sees a photograph of her brother’s body posted in the Hall of the Unnamed Dead. Ernst, a cross-dressing lounge singer at a seedy nightclub, had many secrets, a never-ending list of lovers, and plenty of opportunities to get into trouble.Hannah delves into the city’s dark underbelly to flush out his murderer, but the late night arrival of a five-year-old orphan on her doorstep complicates matters. The endearing Anton claims that Hannah is his mother… and that her dead brother Ernst is his father.

As her investigations into Ernst’s murder and Anton’s parentage uncover political intrigue and sex scandals in the top ranks of the rising Nazi party, Hannah fears not only for her own life, but for that of a small boy who has come to call her “mother.”

Award nominations for A Trace of Smoke and tour dates for Rebecca Cantrell

Image Place holder  of - 42A Trace of Smoke by Rebecca Cantrell received two great award nominations this week!

First, it is nominated in the Sue Feder Best Historical Mystery category for the Macavity Awards.

(The Macavity Award is named for the “mystery cat” of T.S. Eliot (Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats). Each year the members of Mystery Readers International nominate and vote for their favorite mysteries in four categories.)

Secondly, it’s nominated for Best First Novel for the Barry Awards.

(The Barry Awards are nominated on and voted on by subscribers to Deadly Pleasures Mystery Magazine.)


Buzz is already building for the eagerly anticipated sequel, A Night of Long Knives

“A race-against-the-clock thriller…

Cantrell keeps the close calls and cliffhangers coming.”—Kirkus Reviews

Placeholder of  -27“Once again, Cantrell nails the prewar German landscape, although this time, with the Nazis in power, the mood has gone from Weimar decadence to tight-lipped uncertainty…the appeal here is all about atmosphere and the historical moment.”—Booklist

“With brevity and elegance, Rebecca Cantrell provides enough narrative to enable a reader who missed the first novel or who has forgotten key details to make sense of Hannah’s history and to recall the numerous characters from the first novel who make return appearances in this one.”

GreenMan Reviews

A Night of Long Knives is compelling, exciting, and entertaining reading. This is a great read for anyone who wants to disappear inside a great story. Whether you like novels set during World War II, suspense, or just a great plot line with a strong character, this book will not disappoint. Don’t miss this one.”—Popsyndicate.com

And it will be reviewed in the July/August issue of Bust magazine!


And Rebecca Cantrell has the following tour dates lined up:

June 25, 2010: Poisoned Pen, Scottsdale, AZ

June 27, 2010: Mysterious Galaxy, San Diego, CA

June 28, 2010: Barnes and Noble, Encino, CA

June 29, 2010: Mystery Book Shop, Los Angeles, CA

July 1, 2010: M is for Mystery, San Mateo, CA

July 5, 2010: Book Passage, Corte Madera, CA

July 8-10, 2010: Thrillerfest, New York, NY
(see www.thrillerwriters.org for details and times)

July 19, 2010: Borders, Wheaton, IL

July 20, 2010: Next Chapter, Milwaukee, WI

July 21, 2010: Tattered Cover, Denver, CO


There’s still time to enter for a chance to win a copy of A Night of Long Knives on Goodreads!

News: Starred PW review for A Trace of Smoke by Rebecca Cantrell

Image Placeholder of - 36In Mondays’s Publishers Weekly, the give Rebecca Cantrell’s debut A Trace of Smoke a Starred Review and say:

“This unforgettable novel, which can be as painful to read as the history it foreshadows, builds to an appropriately bittersweet ending.”

Full review:

A Trace of Smoke
Rebecca Cantrell
Forge, $24.95 (304p)
ISBN 978-0-7653-2044-5

Set in 1931 Berlin, Cantrell’s scrupulously researched debut tolls a somber dirge for Weimar Germany in its last days. In the Hall of the Unnamed Dead, Hannah Vogel, a 32-year-old crime reporter for the Berliner Tageblatt, recognizes a photograph of a naked corpse on a riverbank as that of her beloved brother, Ernst, an unabashedly gay transvestite cabaret singer. In her search for Ernst’s killer, Hannah uncovers his sexual connections reach from newly recruited young Nazis to the highest levels of the Nazi party. Hannah and Anton, a five-year-old waif who claims Ernst was his father, along with her tender lover, Boris, tread an ominous tightrope as Cantrell unveils the best and the worst of the German character, setting the humanity of decent Germans, Jews and gentiles alike, against the Nazis’ raw savagery and mindless militarism. This unforgettable novel, which can be as painful to read as the history it foreshadows, builds to an appropriately bittersweet ending. (May)

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