The Rest Is Silence
“This Billy Boyle World War II mystery is an exceptionally written book . . . the plot and historical sights and sounds are top-notch. Whether a reader holds WWII books or suspense books close to their heart, this one will be a true find.”
—Suspense Magazine

“[W]ill be savored by any fan of historical mysteries… don’t miss The Rest is Silence! Highly recommended.”
—I Love a Mystery

“Everything about this particular entry in the Billy Boyle series and the series in general makes for great reading. Benn does his research, and it shows in the quality of his writing. The scenes are intense, the dialogue powerful and genuine. Spend some time with Billy Boyle. You’ll be glad you did.”
—The Weirs Times

"[A]n enthralling mystery combined with an interesting bit of history with the usual flair and clarity of the prior entries in the series."
—Midwest Book Reviews

“With its very smooth mix of mystery and historical references (with a dash of Downton Abbey), just about everybody will find something of interest in this fizzy retro cocktail.”
—Library Journal

“This series continues to grow, with the characters adding depth in each episode, and the ever-fascinating historical material dexterously tucked into the plot.”
—Bill Ott, Booklist

“Benn offers a thrilling mix of fact and fiction in his ninth whodunit featuring Boston cop-turned-army investigator Billy Boyle. The affable and capable Boyle continues to grow as a character, and Benn effectively uses the impending Allied invasion of Europe as the background for the whodunit plot.”
—Publishers Weekly

“[W]hiz-bang first-person narrative keeps the story afloat, and its Greatest Generation plot gives it an appealing sense of nostalgia.”
—Kirkus Reviews

"A double-edged sword of a novel. A ripping murder mystery and a meditation on the terrible costs of war—hidden and otherwise.”
—Reed Farrel Coleman

Praise for A Blind Goddess, the previous Billy Boyle WWII Mystery

"James Benn has written a gripping and entertaining mystery, but also . . . realistically and sensitively explores the rarely discussed race relations and power struggles in the U.S. Armed Forces in World War II Britain."
—Susan Elia MacNeal, author of the Maggie Hope mystery series

"One of Mr. Benn's best books of the series . . . A pleasure to read."
—Seattle Post-Intelligencer

"[Benn] achieves an impressive authenticity of time and place . . . without sacrificing a sense of underlying urgency, and it’s his engaging characters, complex whodunit(s), and subtle humor that will sustain the more traditional mystery reader. Those who are first initiated to Billy Boyle with A Blind Goddess will find it hard to resist the desire to revisit the author’s earlier offerings."

"[An] excellent eighth Billy Boyle whodunit . . . The superior plot and thoughtful presentation of institutional racism directed against American soldiers about to risk their lives for their country make this one of Benn’s best."
—Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

"Benn's thoroughly researched exploration of segregation in the wartime armed services is revealing and sensitively handled. Another nice mix of human drama and WWII history."

"A Blind Goddess is a gripping, exciting entry in this outstanding series . . . The disparate storylines are clever and credible in their setup and execution, resulting in a superior mystery that fans of the series will thoroughly enjoy."
—Mysterious Reviews

"James R. Benn is getting even better . . . [A Blind Goddess] is all a big bag of delicious intrigue if you love World War II-era stories. Definitely a series you should look into.”

“A good and disturbing read. Highly recommended.”
—I Love a Mystery

A Blind Goddess
Booklist review of A BLIND GODDESS in the August 1st issue:
The eighth adventure in Benn’s engaging WWII series finds recently promoted Captain Billy Boyle, special investigator for General Eisenhower, assigned to find the killer of a seemingly ordinary citizen in a country village. An odd assignment for a military man, made odder by the fact that Billy has been given orders not to investigate the German family who run the boarding house where the victim lived. Meanwhile, Billy has reconnected with an old friend from Boston, a black man called Tree, a sergeant in a tank destroyer unit. There is bad blood between Billy and Tree, but Tree puts that aside to ask for Billy’s help in freeing a friend from his unit, wrongly accused of killing an Englishman. Juggling both cases, Billy finds himself in the middle of a simmering racial conflict between the black soldiers stationed in the area and their white counterparts, who resent the fact that the blacks have been warmly received by the English....Benn’s thoroughly researched exploration of segregation in the wartime armed services is revealing and sensitively handled. Another nice mix of human drama and WWII history.
--Bill Ott

A Blind Goddess gets a Starred Review in Publisher's Weekly!

Pervasive racism in the U.S. Army during WWII frames Benn’s excellent eighth Billy Boyle whodunit (after 2012’s Death’s Door). In March 1944, Billy receives an appeal from an old estranged friend, Sgt. Eugene “Tree” Jackson. A member of Tree’s “colored” battalion has been arrested for the murder of Thomas Eastman, an English policeman, who was found with his head bashed in on his father’s grave in the village of Chilton Foliat. Tree is positive that the accused was mistakenly arrested. Boyle wants to help, but he’s pulled away into another homicide investigation west of London in which MI5 has an interest. The intelligence service’s role may be related to the fact that the victim’s landlords were two Germans who fled their native country because they opposed the Nazis. The superior plot and thoughtful presentation of institutional racism directed against American soldiers about to risk their lives for their country make this one of Benn’s best.

Traumatized; The Story of a State Trooper.
Co-authored with John G. Patterson and Deborah L. Mandel.
"Traumatized" takes the reader into the mind and soul of a Connecticut State Trooper, John Patterson, who, within the first six years of his career, shot and killed two armed felons in the line of duty. It is the story of his decline into major depression and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), which led to nightmare filled nights, addiction and family discord, and finally, with treatment, a long, slow journey out of the darkness.

A Mortal Terror
The Wall Street Journal praises A MORTAL TERROR:
"...a fast-paced saga set in a period when the fate of civilization still hangs in the balance. As Boyle reflects after a fleeting assignation with his English girlfriend, an always-in-danger secret agent: 'We laughed, but I can't say we were happy...We slept, but could not rest.'"

Mystery Scene magazine reviews A MORTAL TERROR
"a thrilling, fast-paced book...Benn skillfully blends the mystery of the murders and the violence of the war into one fantastic, satisfying whole"
LA Examiner review of "A Mortal Terror"
"masterful...well-crafted...vivid...a great read"

Independent Mystery Booksellers Association:
IMBA names A MORTAL TERROR a "Killer Book"!

Library Journal gives A Mortal Terror a STARRED Review!
War has taken its toll on First Lt. Billy Boyle, and he’s not alone in his misery. It’s January 1944, and he’s trying to figure out why he has been dispatched to Naples in his sixth outing (after Rag and Bone). If you’re new to the series, Billy, a police detective back home, works for his Uncle Ike (yes, that Ike) as a military private investigator. Simply put, the general trusts Billy because he’s family. In this captivating episode, a serial killer from the inside (dubbed the Red Heart Killer because he leaves playing cards on his victims) is targeting Allied officers, moving systematically up the ranks, and it’s getting pretty tense in the officers’ quarters. Billy is under the gun to find the madman before he runs out of cards. VERDICT Jump right in with this winner of a historical detective entry; don’t worry if you haven’t read all the others (I hadn’t). Benn does a superb job of simultaneously capturing the personal anguish of war and creating a splendid adventure novel.

The September issue of Booklist says A MORTAL TERROR is:
"Solid wartime adventure, well grounded in historical detail, and boasting a challenging mystery to boot."

The Billy Boyle World War II Mystery Series

Rag And Bone
"…the novel’s scenes of London under siege are stark and poignant."—The New York Times Book Review

Evil For Evil
A twisting, turning plot drives Benn’s gripping fourth WWII mystery ... As an Irish-American sympathetic to the Republican cause, Billy struggles to remain impartial as he investigates the various factions on both sides of the Catholic-Protestant divide. Benn offers no easy answers in this rich mix of Irish history and wartime intrigue."
Publishers Weekly

Blood Alone
"... a sleuthing soldier risks life and limb to crack a baffling mystery...Billy's determination to learn the truth takes him into the heart of Sicily's complex criminal dynasty, as deadly as the encroaching German army. Another bracing cocktail of period action with a whodunit chaser from the increasingly authoritative Benn."
--Kirkus Reviews

The First Wave
The pursuit of truth in wartime is never as dangerous as when it forces a choice between the greater good and the life of a loved one. For Billy Boyle, that choice is as hard as the unforgiving rocky landscape of Algeria where the American Army receives its baptism of fire in WWII.

Billy Boyle
Billy Boyle is the youngest member of the Boyle clan in the Boston Police Department. A tightly knit Irish family, their fierce loyalties extend little beyond each other, Ireland, and the police force where Billy’s father and uncles also serve. The year is 1941, and they have paved the way for Billy’s promotion to Detective through the time-honored traditions of politics and patronage. Then World War II breaks out. The family’s political connections secure Billy a commission and post with a distant relative of Mrs. Boyle’s, a general serving with the War Plans Department in Washington D.C. where Billy is to safely sit out the war. Unfortunately for the Boyles, that unknown general is Dwight David Eisenhower, who whisks Billy off to England when he is appointed Commander of U.S. forces in Europe . This is definitely not what Billy expected, nor is really qualified for. He must rely on his native wits to keep himself alive and avoid humiliating his family as he conducts his first investigation into the death of an official of the Norwegian government in exile.