Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In Memory of the Sibylline

The Mystery Writers of America presents an all-original anthology sure to appeal to Twilight fans with an interest in crime. While vampires are well represented among the 20 selections, most notably Parnell Hall’s darkly humorous Death of a Vampire, bestseller Harris ensures that werewolves, ghosts, and magicians also get their due. Harley Jane Kozak does a superb job of integrating a ghost into a contemporary setting in Madeeda, in which an expectant mother is concerned over her two-year-old twins’ visions of a bad witch. A phantom ship figures in Lou Kemp’s In Memory of the Sibylline, a highly effective horror story set in the 19th century. Even Mike Hammer gets into X-Files mode in Max Allan Collins’s and Mickey Spillane’s Grave Matter, which successfully introduces a supernatural element into the case of a series of mysterious deaths in the ironically named town of Hopeful, N.Y. Other contributors include William Kent Krueger, Margaret Maron, and Carolyn Hart. (Apr.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

MWA anthology for  Odd Partners 

Amazon reviews –  “The Violins Played Before Junshan” by Lou Kemp. Sibling rivalry to the extreme. 5 stars. Mystery & Thriller rated it it was amazing – May 6, 2019

“The Violins Played Before Junshan” by Lou Kemp falls into the historical mystery camp and is as dazzling and imaginative as anything I’ve read recently. The primary reason is that it features a protagonist named Celwyn, who presents himself as a magician but is a heck of a lot more than that, in a tale full of treachery, deception and double-dealing.


Seattle Noir.

Colbert, Curt (Editor)
Jun 2009. 300 p. Akashic, paperback, $15.95. (9781933354804).
Is Seattle too “nice” for noir? It is home to the original Skid Road, the Green River Killer, and the second
most popular suicide bridge in the nation and yet perhaps too laid-back and politically correct to embrace
the genre’s viciousness and depravity. Of the many varied shades of local color on display in this mixed
but worthwhile collection, only a few have the inky chiaroscuro found in Akashic noir entries from
Brooklyn or Detroit, among them Stephan Magcosta’s nightmarish tale of a bad encounter between an
Iraqi war widow and a cabdriver and Lou Kemp’s twisted, gothic Sherlockian pastiche. Other standouts
include Simon Wood’s taut tale of a bar brawler recruited into a life-changing club, Robert Lopresti’s
demented dialogue between homeless murder witnesses, Curt Colbert’s clipped Jake Rossiter detective
yarn (crossing O. Henry with Hammett), and Skye Moody’s memorable funhouse tale of embittered
showbiz dwarfs and hothouse flowers that could be Nathaniel West’s Day of the Locust as told by Tom
Robbins. Fourteen original stories that may well be of interest beyond the Northwest.
— David Wright

What the Readers are saying!

Farm Hall, standalone

“Lou Kemp is one of those rare authors who dare to take literary risks to produce something strikingly original.”

“’Farm Hall’ has it all — suspense, murder, mystery, magical realism,”

“I love history twisted into a mystery.”


The Violins Played before Junstan, prequel

“A rotating cast of eccentric characters.”

“The main character, Jonas Celwyn, is a cross between The Doctor (of Doctor Who fame) and Loki from the MCU.”

“The ending will take your breath away.”

“Historical fiction with a twist.”


Music Shall Untune the Sky, book 1

“A wild adventure with a splash of everything.”

“The plot kept me enthralled to the last page.”

“Mystery along with some mischievous magic!”

“Absolutely amazing!”


The Raven and the Pig, book 2

“The story is a melting pot of mystery, adventure, and magical realism.”

“The characters are fascinating, and their relationships are complex.”

“A page turner which I couldn’t put down.”

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