The Real Book Spy’s August 2018 Reading Guide

With new books from heavy-hitters like Brad Thor, Daniel Silva, and Ben Coes, July was an epic month for thriller fans.

If you’ve already blown through those guys’ books and are nursing a serious thriller hangover, help is on the way. . . because there’s another round of great books set to hit store shelves. 

As always, we’ve highlighted a few books that stand above the rest to be our Featured Selections. This month, those books are Lisa Scottoline’s Feared, Steve Hamilton’s Dead Man Running, and J.T. Ellison’s Tear Me Apart

In Feared, Scottoline, one of the most consistent and well-rounded novelists working today, brings back her fan-favorite characters Mary DiNunzio and Bennie Rosato, who get hit with a lawsuit that, while frivolous, appears to have merit and forces the duo to defend themselves and their law firm. Behind the suit is a smug attorney whom Mary has some history with, after beating him in court once before. Now, though, there’s much more on the line, personally, for everyone. . . and Scottoline delivers in a big way. 

After tasting major success the last two years with his new series protagonist, Nick Mason, Steve Hamilton is bringing back an old favorite in retired Detroit police officer turned PI, Alex McKnight. First and foremost, it’s just nice to see McKnight back in action, and Hamilton pulls out all the stops for this one. Dead Man Running ups the ante, forcing Alex to face off with a deranged serial killer who sucks him into a disturbing game that quickly turns personal. Hamilton is a great writer with plenty of top-notch thrillers under his belt, but this is his best work yet. You won’t want to miss it! 

So long Gone Girl, hello Tear Me Apart. J.T. Ellison has crafted another chilling plot with this one, setting the new standard for domestic thrillers moving forward. Imagine this: you’re a world-class skier with dreams of qualifying for the Olympic team. After training your whole life, you’re now just days away from your dream becoming a reality when you wreck hard and have to be taken to the hospital with a broken leg. Upon waking up from surgery to repair your leg, doctors tell you that you actually have a very rare, very serious form of cancer and that your only hope of survival is to undergo a stem cell procedure immediately. Then, on top of everything else, DNA tests show that neither of your parents — the same parents who’ve raised you, loved you, supported you, and helped you chase your dreams, are your actual parents. That’s the setup here for young Mindy Wright, and Ellison keeps the hits (and twists) coming from there. 

Find out more about those books, along with all the other new thrillers set to come out over the next few weeks, below! 


Tuesday, August 7th

The Middleman by Olen Steinhauer

Ripped straight from the headlines, Olen Steinhauer holds nothing back with his latest thriller, The Middleman, a timely thriller that follows characters on both sides of a domestic terrorist plot. 

When it comes to peaceful protests versus acts of domestic terrorism, where does one draw the line? That’s one of the fundamental questions asked early on in Steinhauer’s thought-provoking story. In this case, the answer falls somewhere right around stinger missiles — which are obtained by an organization calling themselves the Massive Brigade, landing them on the FBI’s watchlist. 

Branded as a movement and led by Martin Bishop, a social justice warrior who knows how to make headlines, the Massive Brigade rises to prominence after they’re profiled by a major contemporary magazine. Their ability to organize and work as one is the movement’s strength, and that comes especially in handy when the FBI comes after them. In an attempt to evade the authorities, Bishop disappears, along with several hundred of his followers.

As members go to ground, it appears to those on the outside watching in that the FBI’s attempts to crack down on the Massive Brigade have been successful. However, those on the inside know that isn’t true, and Special Agent Rachel Proulx delves deeper, personally investigating the whereabouts of Bishop with help from Kevin Moore, an undercover agent who’s managed to infiltrate the organization. They realize early on that a bigger game is afoot than most realize, but identifying all the players proves to be challenging. 

With each heart-pounding encounter, the FBI continues gaining the upper hand, and, eventually, rumors even start to swirl that the movement has disbanded, though Moore, who provides an unfiltered glimpse at the group’s inner controversy, reports the exact opposite. It becomes clear to Agent Proulx that someone with some serious clout is pulling the strings behind the scenes, and she sets out to unmask the individual. . . whose identity and motives are truly shocking. 

Not only is Steinhauer’s story current, full of themes playing out across the country today, but in a rather unprecedented move, he covers the entire plot from all angles. Readers get to view the conflict through the eyes of an FBI agent, an undercover operative, a convert to the organization, and a writer closely following the story as it unfolds. Each character is expertly developed and provides a raw, unvarnished perspective that makes it challenging, at times, for readers to know who the bad guys really are. 

Olen Steinhauer mixes politics and espionage as well as anyone, and his latest offering is easily some of his finest work to date. The Middleman is smart, well-written, and sure to get readers thinking. . . you’d be hard pressed to find a better standalone thriller hitting bookstores in 2018. 

Book Details

Author: Olen Steinhauer
Pages: 368 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 1250036178
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Release Date: August 7, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 9.0/10

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Tailspin by Sandra Brown

“Don’t miss the spine tingling suspense and tantalizing romance in this thriller about a daring pilot caught in a race against time from #1 New York Times bestselling author Sandra Brown.

Rye Mallett, a fearless “freight dog” pilot charged with flying cargo to far-flung locations, is often rough-spoken and all business, but soft on regulations when they get in the way of meeting a deadline. But he does have a rock-solid reputation: he will fly in the foulest weather, day or night, and deliver the goods safely to their destination. So when Rye is asked to fly into a completely fogbound northern Georgia town and deliver a mysterious black box to a Dr. Lambert, he doesn’t ask questions.
As Rye’s plane nears the isolated landing strip, more trouble than inclement weather awaits him. He is greeted first by a sabotage attempt on his plane that causes him to crash land, and then by Dr. Brynn O’Neal, who claims she was sent for the box in Dr. Lambert’s stead. Despite Rye’s “non-involvement” policy when it comes to other people’s problems, he finds himself irresistibly drawn to the intrigue surrounding his cargo . . . and to the mysterious and alluring Brynn.
Soon Rye and Brynn are in a treacherous forty-eight-hour race to deliver the box before time runs out. With everyone from law enforcement officials to hired thugs hot on their heels, they must learn to trust each other so they can protect their valuable cargo from those who would kill for it.”

Book Details

Author: Sandra Brown
Pages: 432 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 1455572160
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Release Date: August 7, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 6.5/10

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The Washington Decree by Jussi Adler-Olsen

Following 9/11, a series of executive orders were signed into existence in order to further protect the United States of America in the event of an imminent attack on the homefront. Under certain circumstances, that means the president can invoke martial law, changing society as we know it today. . . 

In Jussi Adler-Olsen’s The Washington Decree, that is precisely what happens when President Bruce Jansen goes way too far in his bid to end all gun violence, essentially elevating himself to dictator status after his wife is assassinated.

Dorothy “Doggie” Rogers grew up in a Republican home but doesn’t share her parents’ political views.  She began supporting Bruce Jansen when he was just a senator, much to the dismay of her especially conservative-leaning father. Sixteen years later, when Jansen won the White House, Doggie went with him, proud of her new job and the man she’s supported her entire adult life. However, her perfect world comes crashing down around her when the First Lady is assassinated and her father turns out to be the prime suspect in the shooting. 

The messy setup for Doggie is just the beginning. Soon, the focus is shifted back to Jansen, who declares martial law in order to strip all Americans of their firearms. That, though, is just the beginning, as the right to bear arms is hardly the only constitutional right infringed upon. Habeas corpus, due process, and free speech are the next dominoes to fall. Then go freedom of the press and the freedom to travel about, as the grieving president continues running a military state hellbent on controlling the American population. Doggie, meanwhile, like so many others, questions what’s happening around her. Realizing there’s a time and place for discussion and dialogue, but that Jansen’s actions are so very beyond that, Doggie joins the fight to stop what’s happening, and in the process, discovers that her her father, who has been sentenced to death for the murder of Jansen’s wife might just be innocent after all. . . 

Stepping away from his Department Q series to deliver this politically-charged standalone novel, Jussi Adler-Olsen’s timely new thriller offers a terrifying glimpse at what could happen under the right circumstances should the president ever lose his mind and begin acting out of control to serve his personal agenda instead of serving the American people. Overall, The Washington Decree has a great setup for a conspiracy thriller, but the execution, while not bad, isn’t great, either. In a lot of ways, this book is similar to Stephen Coonts’ provocative, politically incorrect novel, Liberty’s Last Stand.  The main difference is that Coonts’ book, while controversial, was very well-written and entertaining. 

Adler-Olsen’s, on the other hand, takes a long time to get going, and then, even after it does get chugging along, never really lives up to the hype. Also, there are some inaccuracies in the story itself, most likely due to translation issues, as the book was originally published in Denmark. In the end, there is a somewhat valuable message for readers, and the timely plot threads will no doubt resonate with some Americans, while, quite frankly, others (depending on their political leanings) will absolutely hate it. That’s to be expected whenever a thriller crafted around multiple hot-button issues come out, and The Washington Decree is no exception. 

Controversial, yes. . . but also entertaining. Jussi Adler-Olsen’s The Washington Decree is equally thought-provoking and alarming.

Book Details

Author: Jussi Adler-Olsen
Pages: 592 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 152474252X
Publisher: Dutton
Release Date: August 7, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 6.5/10

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Without Fear by Col. David Hunt and R. J. Pineiro

“Col. David Hunt and R. J. Pineiro have teamed up for a second action-packed, Hunter Stark thriller steeped in authenticity: Without Fear.

Southern Afghanistan, 2005. NATO forces are battling the Taliban across Kandahar Province. In a terrifying twist, the rebels unearth a tactical nuclear bomb lost in the final days of the Soviet occupation. The years buried in the sand have damaged it, so the Taliban seeks the help of al Qaeda to secure replacement parts through its contacts in Saudi Arabia, the Opium Cartel, and the Russian Mafia. Doing so, however, inadvertently alerts the Americans, the Russians, and the Israelis.

Hunter Stark and his team of CIA contractors are on the chase, dispensing explosive waves of violence to track where the Taliban is hiding the weapon. But Russian Spetsnaz and Israeli Mossad operatives are also in the region following their own agendas―as is NATO―triggering chaos and confusion.

The stakes skyrocket when a courier delivers the components and the weapon becomes functional, forcing Stark to drive full throttle, without fear, into a world of terror, going beyond duty and honor to prevent the unthinkable.”

Book Details

Author: David Hunt
Pages: 528 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 0765394006
Publisher: Forge Books
Release Date: August 7, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 6.5/10

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An Unwanted Guest by Shari Lapena

“A weekend retreat at a cozy mountain lodge is supposed to be the perfect getaway . . . but when the storm hits, no one is getting away

It’s winter in the Catskills and Mitchell’s Inn, nestled deep in the woods, is the perfect setting for a relaxing–maybe even romantic–weekend away. It boasts spacious old rooms with huge woodburning fireplaces, a well-stocked wine cellar, and opportunities for cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, or just curling up with a good murder mystery.

So when the weather takes a turn for the worse, and a blizzard cuts off the electricity–and all contact with the outside world–the guests settle in for the long haul. 

Soon, though, one of the guests turns up dead–it looks like an accident. But when a second guest dies, they start to panic. 

Within the snowed-in paradise, something–or someone–is picking off the guests one by one. And there’s nothing they can do but hunker down and hope they can survive the storm.”

Book Details

Author: Shari Lapena
Pages: 304 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 0525557628
Publisher: Pamela Dorman Books
Release Date: August 7, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 6.5/10

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Tuesday, August 14th

Feared by Lisa Scottoline (Featured Selection)

Rosato & DiNunzio return with a bang in Lisa Scottoline’s Feared

Things aren’t going so hot for the predominantly female-driven law firm headed up by Bennie Rosato and Mary DiNunzio, who are now accused of being sexist and are being sued by three men who claim they weren’t offered employment based solely on their sex. John Foxman, their lone male associate, is on their side — until he suddenly isn’t. After making his own claims about working conditions and the way he feels he’s treated by his co-workers, he quits the firm. 

Behind the scenes, South Philadelphia-based attorney Nick Machiavelli is pulling the strings of the accusers, and even goes so far as to hold a public press conference condemning Rosato and DiNunzio’s practice, raising questions about their ethics and integrity.  As clients flee their firm in light of the claims, neither Bennie or Mary can figure out Machiavelli’s motive for trying to destroy them. Previously, Mary beat him once in court, but is that enough to make the guy go all-out, stop-at-nothing to bring her down? Complicating matters more is the fact that another associate, Judy Carrier, has been engaging in a romantic relationship with John, which she breaks off after things go south with the firm. Tragically, Foxman is murdered a short while later, and Detective Krakoff, who was assigned to the case, traces John’s footsteps right back to the messy breakup, which was witnessed by several people who corroborate the story. 

And just like that, Rosato and DiNunzio are accused of reverse-discrimination, and Judy becomes the prime suspect in the murder of one of their former associates who admitted the claims weren’t unfounded, which only makes their firm look worse in the court of public opinion. 

Thankfully, the court of public opinion is subjective. . . and Rosato and DiNunzio shine in the actual courtroom, where they’re hellbent on defending themselves from the frivolous lawsuit. However, as the story unfolds, Nick Machiavelli proves to be a worthy adversary, setting up an epic showdown that does not disappoint.

Upset and pushed beyond their limits, Rosato and DiNunzio begin to hit back, and in the process find out that while it’s great to be loved. . . sometimes it’s better to be feared. 

Before she was one of America’s favorite authors, Scottoline clerked for judges at the state and federal appellate courts, then went on to become a litigator at a Philadelphia law firm. Her background and experience as an attorney bleed onto every page, blending perfectly with her natural storytelling ability. Longtime fans will enjoy seeing a bit more of Mary DiNunzio in this one, as she takes point early on while Scottoline continues to expertly develop and flesh out her characters. Her battles with Machiavelli, who might just be the best antagonist of the series so far, are as good as anything else you’ll find in bookstores this summer.

Nobody delivers as consistently as Lisa Scottoline, who has outdone herself with Feared, one of her strongest novels yet and an absolute must-read for all fans of legal thrillers. 

Book Details

Author: Lisa Scottoline 
Series: Rosato & DiNunzio #6
Pages: 400 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 1250099595
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Release Date: August 14, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 8.5/10

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The Line That Held Us by David Joy

Two poachers, both trespassing on private land, accidentally cross paths, kicking off this killer plot from David Joy. 

Set in North Carolina just before fall, the story opens with Darl Moody, a simple man who doesn’t give “a wet sack of sh-t what the state considered poaching.” Annoyed by hunting laws, which barely allow men like him who are just trying to feed his family provide a little meat for the dinner table, Darl sets out a few hours before dark to poach wild game. Instead, he accidentally kills a man.

While Darl was hunting out of season, Carol “Sissy” Brewer was stealing ginseng. Tragically, Moody mistakenly thought Carol was a boar. Thinking back to the time a father and son nailed a 580-pound hog just inside Transylvania County, netting them more than 150 pounds of meat, Darl was ripe with excitement, stalking the animal through the woods before finally taking a shot with his cheap rifle. Darl hit his target, amazing even himself, but quickly realized his mistake when he went to find the boar and instead found Carol sprawled out on the ground, dead. 

On one hand, neither of the men were supposed to be there, and both were in violation of the law. There’s a good chance that Darl would be charged with nothing more than poaching, even though he accidentally shot and killed Carol, who was rooting around on all fours. On the other hand, Darl knows that Carol’s big brother, Dwayne, is not the type to let such a mistake go unpunished. Fearing not only for his own safety but also for his mother, sister, nieces, and nephews, Darl calls his best friend, Calvin Hooper, to help him out. Together, under the cover of darkness, Darl and Calvin dig a grave and toss Carol’s mangled body inside it.

The sunrise hours later brings a new day and with it new problems for Darl. Just as he predicted, Dwayne Brewer, a big man with a short fuse who is quick to violence, begins investigating his brother’s absence. Known around town for walking to the beat of his own drum and adhering to his own style of justice, Dwayne loved his brother and vows to make whoever killed him pay. Following a trail of clues that Darl and Calvin failed to bury along with Carol’s body, Dwayne sets his sights on Moody, and the two go toe-to-toe in a twisted game of revenge, one that’s sure to tear people apart and leave no man standing unharmed. 

For a guy with the last name of Joy, David sure knows how to write one heck of a dark and gritty story. The Line that Held Us is noir to the bone, and Joy knows how to suck readers into his universe with a simple conflict that snowballs into an unthinkably violent tale of grace, retribution, consequences, and everything in between.

Think No Country for Old Men meets There Will Be Blood — David Joy’s The Line that Held Us is beautifully written, perfectly executed, and breathtakingly violent. 

Book Details

Author: David Joy
Pages: 272 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 0399574220
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Release Date: August 14, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 8.0/10

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Abandoned by Allison Brennan

“New York Times bestselling author Allison Brennan weaves the intimate, unputdownable story of an investigator confronting the most important–and most dangerous–mystery of her career.

Investigative reporter Max Revere has cracked many cases, but the one investigation she’s never attempted is the mystery from her own past. Her mother abandoned her when she was nine, sending her periodic postcards, but never returning to reclaim her daughter. Seven years after the postcards stop coming, Martha Revere is declared legally dead, with no sign of what may have happened to her. Until now.

With a single clue―that her mother’s car disappeared sixteen years ago in a small town on the Chesapeake Bay―Max drops everything to finally seek the truth. As Max investigates, and her mother’s story unfolds, she realizes that Martha teamed up with a con man. They traveled the world living off Martha’s trust and money they conned from others.

Though no one claims to know anything about Martha or her disappearance, Max suspects more than one person is lying. When she learns the FBI has an active investigation into the con man, Max knows she’s on the right path. But as Max digs into the dark secrets of this idyllic community, the only thing she might find is the same violent end as her mother.”

Book Details

Author: Allison Brennan
Pages: 352 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 1250164486
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Release Date: August 14, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 6.5/10

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The Breakers by Marcia Muller

“Sharon McCone returns in New York Times bestselling author Marcia Muller’s thrilling new mystery!

On a foggy summer morning, private investigator Sharon McCone receives a call from her former neighbors, the Curleys. Their usually dependable daughter Chelle hasn’t been answering their calls for weeks. Would Sharon check on her?

Sharon arranges to visit the building Chelle had been living in and rehabbing in southwest San Francisco. Once it was a nightclub and bar, she learns, and a favorite destination for the city’s elite during Prohibition. But there’s something sinister about the space, and Sharon quickly discovers why. Lurking behind a divider screen is a ghastly art gallery: portraits and caricatures of mass murderers, long ago and recent. Jack the Ripper. The Zodiac and Zebra killers of the 1970s. Charles Manson and his girls. Scott Peterson, who killed his pregnant wife, Laci, and dumped her body into the Bay on Christmas Eve. What, an alarmed Sharon wonders, was Chelle doing in this chamber of horrors? And where is she now?

New York Times
 bestselling author Marcia Muller is at her page-turning best in The Breakers, as she digs into a particularly disturbing corner of San Francisco’s history–one that Sharon McCone may not escape alive…”

Book Details

Author: Marcia Muller
Pages: 352 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 1250164486
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Release Date: August 14, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 6.5/10

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Tuesday, August 21st

Dead Man Running by Steve Hamilton (Featured Selection)

Alex McKnight returns with a bang in Dead Man Running, the thrilling new novel from New York Times bestselling author Steve Hamilton.

Alex McKnight, last seen in Let it Burn (2014), is still living in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula when readers meet back up with the former Detroit cop turned private detective. While he’s still battling the tundra-like winter conditions and living in near isolation, McKnight has a new gig this time around working as a “fugitive recovery agent” (a fancy way of saying bounty hunter) for Superior Bail Bonds out of Marquette.

While on a cruise on the Mediterranean Sea, Frank Thompson takes a moment away from sunbathing on the deck with his wife to check his security camera at home. At first, the video feed coming through seems normal, until a man suddenly appears in his home. Switching cameras to follow the intruder around, Frank sits six thousand miles and eight time zones away while a stranger walks through his Scottsdale, Arizona home, making his way into the Thompsons’ master bedroom. What he saw next was truly horrifying. 

After Thompson alerted the police to what he’d witnessed on camera, seasoned FBI agent Roger Halliday assumes control of the scene in Scottsdale, convinced that the man captured on camera is the serial killer he’s been hunting across the US, through California, Utah, and Nevada, in relation to at least six kidnappings and murders. Hoping they finally caught a break in the case, Halliday lays a trap for the UNSUB, who has a penchant for returning to the scene of the crime over the course of several days to revisit his victims and engage in disturbing acts.

The trap works, but once in custody, the suspect, who is identified as Martin T. Livermore, flips the script on the FBI. 

After revealing that he fully intended to be caught on camera and that he knew the FBI would be waiting for him when he returned, Livermore, who is as unsettling as any character Hamilton has ever created, drops a bomb. . . his seventh victim is still alive, but he will only take the FBI to her location under one condition: that a former Detroit police officer named Alex McKnight be brought in and along for the ride. 

As Hamilton’s story unfolds, it becomes clear to Alex that he has no connection whatsoever to Livermore. Not from his time as a cop, or a PI. At the same time, McKnight realizes that while Livermore means nothing to him, he clearly means something to the deranged killer, who seems to be playing an elaborate long game. But as Alex races to figure out the killer’s master plan, he’s confronted with a shocking reality. In an instant, the tables have turned and McKnight suddenly finds himself in the most dangerous, emotionally draining, and physically exhausting case of his life. 

Alex McKnight’s been put through the ringer before, but never quite like this. . . Steve Hamilton rakes his hero over the coals, taking him to hell and back as he faces off with a man so evil that he’d scare the hell out of the devil himself. 

Full of twists and turns, Hamilton’s latest McKnight novel is raw, dark, and absolutely relentless. . . Dead Man Running proves that Steve Hamilton is one of the best crime writers on the planet, and his latest showing will leave readers begging for more. 

Book Details

Author: Steve Hamilton
Series: Alex McKnight #11
Pages: 304 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 0399574441
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons 
Release Date: August 21, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 8.5/10

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Pieces of Her by Karin Slaughter

“The #1 internationally bestselling author returns with a new novel in the vein of her New York Times bestsellers Pretty Girls and The Good Daughter—a story even more electrifying, provocative, and suspenseful than anything she’s written before.

What if the person you thought you knew best turns out to be someone you never knew at all . . . ?

Andrea knows everything about her mother, Laura. She knows she’s spent her whole life in the small beachside town of Belle Isle; she knows she’s never wanted anything more than to live a quiet life as a pillar of the community; she knows she’s never kept a secret in her life. Because we all know our mothers, don’t we?

But all that changes when a trip to the mall explodes into violence and Andrea suddenly sees a completely different side to Laura. Because it turns out that before Laura was Laura, she was someone completely different. For nearly thirty years she’s been hiding from her previous identity, lying low in the hope that no one would ever find her. But now she’s been exposed, and nothing will ever be the same again.

The police want answers and Laura’s innocence is on the line, but she won’t speak to anyone, including her own daughter. Andrea is on a desperate journey following the breadcrumb trail of her mother’s past. And if she can’t uncover the secrets hidden there, there may be no future for either one of them. . . .”

Book Details

Author: Karin Slaughter 
Pages: 480 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 0062430270
Publisher: William Morrow 
Release Date: August 21, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 7.0/10

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Desolation Mountain by William Kent Krueger

All of his life, Cork O’Connor’s son, Stephen, has had visions of tragedies. So when his latest visions involve a great bird falling from the sky, he believes something awful will soon follow. Of course, his visions are all thought to be crazy. Until they’re not. 

A private airplane carrying United States senator Olympia McCarthy and her family crashes on the Iron Lake Reservation, killing nearly everyone on board. Stephen is convinced that the event fulfilled the vision he had, and turns to his father to help get to the bottom of things. A member of the search party, Cork, who is a former police officer turned PI (and part-time burger flipper), takes Stephen with him as they journey to Desolation Mountain in search of survivors . . . and answers. 

Cork and Stephen are hardly the only people descending on the mountain, located in a remote part of the reservation. Multiple government agencies are on the scene as well, and everyone has their own reason for investigating and theories as to what’s going on. Additionally, former Secret Service Agent Bo Thorson (The Devil’s Bed) is also present, but as an independent investigator. Having left the secret service, Thorson is now a private security consultant, and one of his clients has secretly hired him to get to the bottom of what happened. In search of the same things, Cork and Bo decide to join forces, but the more new details begin to surface about Senator McCarthy, the more Cork questions whether they’re playing for the same team. 

Desperate for answers, Cork and Stephen race to learn the truth, only to be met by opposition from multiple branches of the government at every turn. It’s clear something much bigger is going on behind the scenes, and things take a wild turn when members of the search party start vanishing. Time is running out. . . and it’s up to Cork O’Connor to figure out what’s going on before it’s too late. 

William Kent Krueger’s 17th O’Connor novel packs the same punch of suspense that his readers have come to expect, but also takes a slight supernatural turn. Though the supernatural elements aren’t played up quite as much as you might see from John Connolly, the Irish writer’s Charlie Parker series (especially the older books) offers a nice comparison, with shades of John Sandford woven in as well. The plot features a few well-written twists and turns, and Krueger knows how to keep readers off-balance as the plot unfolds. Likewise, the story is visually stunning, capturing the setting in a way that allows readers to feel like they’re trekking across the Iron Lake Reservation.

William Kent Krueger brings the vast Minnesota landscape to life the way C.J. Box does with Wyoming, allowing the setting itself to become a character in the story. Just when you think you know what’s going on, Krueger darts in another direction, pulling readers helplessly along the twisting ride through the haunting wild. 

Whereas most series begin to flame out by now, Cork O’Connor is still going strong and showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon. . . Desolation Mountain is as spooky as it is suspenseful, an addictive recipe that William Kent Krueger serves up as good as anyone in the business. 

Book Details

Author: William Kent Krueger 
Series: Cork O’Connor #17
Pages: 336 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 1501147463
Publisher: Atria Books
Release Date: August 21, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 7.5/10

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Swift Vengeance by T. Jefferson Parker

“In this incendiary new thriller from three-time Edgar Award winner and New York Times bestselling author T. Jefferson Parker, Roland Ford is hunting down a mysterious killer, jockeying for position with the FBI, and risking everything to save a friend in terrible jeopardy.

Returning hero and private investigator Roland Ford is on the trail of a mysterious killer who is beheading CIA drone operators and leaving puzzling clues at each crime scene. His troubled friend Lindsay Rakes is afraid for her own life and the life of her son after a fellow flight crew member is killed in brutal fashion. Even more terrifying is the odd note the killer left behind: “Welcome to Caliphornia. This is not the last.” Ford strikes an uneasy alliance with San Diego-based FBI agent Joan Taucher, who is tough as nails but haunted by what sees as the Bureau’s failure to catch the 9/11 terrorists, many of whom spent their last days in her city. As the killer strikes again, Ford and Taucher dash into the fray, each desperate for their own reasons–each ready to risk it all to stop the killer from doing far more damage.”

Book Details

Author: T. Jefferson Parker 
Pages: 368 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 0735212694
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Release Date: August 21, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 7.0/10

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The Iceman by P.T. Deutermann

In his latest WWII naval thriller, Deutermann introduces readers to a fearless submarine commander named Malachi Stormes.

Set in 1942, Stormes receives a promotion after a ballsy submarine attack on a German base, which wiped out several enemy subs. Upgrading from an American S-class sub to the USS Firefish, a long-range submarine based in Australia, Stormes quickly discovers that his new crew is struggling to adjust to his controversial style and leadership tactics.

The Firefish‘s old skipper was just that. Old. Stormes, a young guy who doesn’t have as much long-term experience, is more willing to take chances in order to get the job done — which some believe shows a lack of experience on his part. At first, that perceived lack of experience scared the heck out of his crew, who had become used to serving under a man who was slow to engage enemies. Eventually, some of them come around and realize that Stormes, while borderline reckless at times, gets major results when it counts the most. 

The USS Firefish goes on to sink more Japanese ships than anyone else, but they’ve also had some close calls. Earning himself the nickname “The Iceman” by his crew because of his even-keeled demeanor while staring down danger, Stormes makes it clear that they’re going to do this his way.  But as the Firefish drifts deeper into enemy waters, each mission more dangerous than the last, questions surface about whether or not Stormes is even mentally fit to lead. His past episodes of insubordination are well-known and documented, but Stormes keeps other past secrets close to his vest. As torpedoes start slicing through the waters, readers will find themselves racing through the pages to see if the maverick commander is, indeed, able to lead his men back home safely. . . or if his flawed sense of logic will ultimately lead to their doom. 

As a writer, P.T. Deutermann is seriously underrated. His last book, Red Swan (2017), was written in the vein of Jason Matthews and featured several killer twists and a great cast of characters. This time, the author, who was a senior staff officer in Washington and a Navy captain before being promoted to Commodore, channels Rick Campbell and Larry Bond, delivering a high-stakes naval thriller that takes readers back to a crucial point in history. While the Cold War Era has long been a time period coveted by spy novelists, most authors tend to write their naval thrillers in a not-too-distant, futuristic setting. By going back in time, Deutermann offers a nice change of pace, and he definitely knows this stuff inside and out. 

Fast-paced, well-written, and full of been-there-done-that authenticity, P.T. Deutermann’s The Iceman should find its way onto plenty of reading lists this fall. 

Book Details

Author: P.T. Deutermann
Series: WWII Navy
Pages: 330 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 1250181372
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Release Date: August 21, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 6.5/10

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The Other Woman by Sandie Jones

“The most twisty, addictive and gripping debut thriller you’ll read this year.

HE LOVES YOU: Adam adores Emily. Emily thinks Adam’s perfect, the man she thought she’d never meet.

BUT SHE LOVES YOU NOT: Lurking in the shadows is a rival, a woman who shares a deep bond with the man she loves.

AND SHE’LL STOP AT NOTHING: Emily chose Adam, but she didn’t choose his mother Pammie. There’s nothing a mother wouldn’t do for her son, and now Emily is about to find out just how far Pammie will go to get what she wants: Emily gone forever.

THE OTHER WOMAN will have you questioning her on every page, in Sandie Jones’ chilling psychological thriller about a man, his new girlfriend, and the mother who will not let him go.”

Book Details

Author: Sandie Jones
Pages: 304 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 125019198X
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Release Date: August 21, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 7.5/10

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Assassin’s Run by Ward Larsen

Legendary Israeli assassin David Slaton returns for his most explosive mission yet in Ward Larsen’s (Cutting Edge, 2018, etc.) Assassin’s Run

About to sit down and celebrate the kicking off of one of the most ambitious plans of his career, Pyotr Ivanovic, a high-profile Russian oligarch who’s known for being close with Russian President Petrov, anxiously prepares to dine on his thirty-ounce, grain-fed beef that was flown in from Australia and seared perfectly by his chef. Looking out the starboard window, Ivanovic took in the beautiful scenery and soaked up the moonlit Tyrrhenian river, where Cassandra, his beloved yacht, bobbed up and down. A moment later, a large caliber, supersonic round exploded into his chest, throwing him violently over the railing. He was dead before he hit the water.

Four days later, while hiding out in the Italian township of Vieste, David Slaton is paid a visit by a woman with the CIA. Anna Sorenson informs Slaton that the Russians aren’t taking Ivanovic’s murder lightly and theorizes that their unusually high degree of interest in the man’s death indicates that he might have been involved in an important operation. According to FSB intercepts, the Russians are keying in on their number one suspect — a former Mossad agent who was thought to have been killed in England several years ago: Slaton. 

David realizes he has a serious problem because the evidence doesn’t look good. Not only is he a notorious assassin, but as fate would have it, he was near the location of the oligarch’s death onboard his own boat, Windsom. The truth is that he’s totally innocent, but the truth doesn’t matter now that the Russians are searching for him, so Slaton makes peace with running again, still determined to leave his old life behind and continue trying to forge a new one with his family. Then Sorenson sweetens the pot. 

The CIA, it turns out, is intrigued with using Slaton to figure out why exactly President Petrov is so personally invested in the investigation into Ivanovic’s death. If he’s willing to play ball with them, they offer to help him disappear, and stay hidden, in the future. 

With no better option on the table, Slaton once again reluctantly dusts off his H&K, still worn in the grip from a long career of killing bad men, and heads first to Capri, and then Rome, in search of two things: why the Russians think he killed Ivanovic, and what the man did to get himself killed in the first place.

As the plot unwinds, Larsen introduces a deadly conspiracy that changes the game entirely, and it’s up to David Slaton to make sense of everything. . . and then stop it. . . before it’s too late. 

Now five books in, Larsen’s series is often compared to Daniel Silva’s Gabriel Allon franchise, which makes some sense because both Slaton and Allon are famous Israeli spies/assassins. Additionally, both authors have their heroes going up against Russia this year, but beyond that, their works are very different. Slaton is more of an Israeli Jason Bourne when you get into their skill sets and what makes them tick. And as far as writing style (pacing and how they structure action sequences), Ward Larsen is more in line with Ben Coes or Mark Greaney. 

Assassin’s Run is another very solid thriller from Ward Larsen, and David Slaton remains one of the thriller genre’s most underrated protagonists. If you’re looking for nonstop action and a smartly-written plot, Larsen’s latest has that and then some.

Book Details

Author: Ward Larsen 
Series: David Slaton #5
Pages: 368 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 0765391503
Publisher: Forge Books 
Release Date: August 21, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 7.0/10

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VOX by Christina Dalcher

With the topic of women’s rights front and center in today’s world, Christina Dalcher offers a disturbing look at a future where women literally have their voices taken from them.

Set in the not-too-distant future, America is undergoing some big changes. Mainly, women are being stripped of their rights and freedoms, no longer allowed to have jobs, hold bank accounts, or speak more than 100 words per day — a fraction of the sixteen thousand most people speak on average. All of that’s only the beginning, though, as things quickly worsen and girls are no longer taught how to read and write thanks to what’s being called the “Pure Movement” by the president and his administration. 

Founded by Reverend Carl, whose teachings and own voice have led to the movement that stripped women of theirs, America has changed to the point of no longer being recognizable. Every woman is fitted with a bracelet that, much like how a Fitbit tracks steps, counts their words. Anything over 100 words causes an electrical shock to emit from the bracelet, silencing them or, eventually, throwing out enough juice to kill them.

Prior to the radical agenda taking hold, Dr. Jean McClellan was one of the top cognitive linguists in the world. Now she’s been relegated to staying home and caring for her four children rather than contributing to society through science, a reality that she never believed possible and struggles to come to grips with. Things change for her after the president’s brother suffers a nasty fall while skiing, damaging the area of his brain that controls language. Seeking an expert to help restore the man’s speech, Jean is approached by the government and subsequently makes a deal to help. In return, some of the rights that were so wrongly ripped from her are temporarily given back, making her the only woman in the country with a voice. . . literally. 

At first glance, Dalcher’s novel seems so laughably far-fetched that it’s almost hard to open up. Regardless of what you think about religion or beliefs on either side of the political spectrum, it’s nearly impossible to ever imagine a day when America could become this radical. Then again, this sort of oppression is already happening in other parts of the world. Like, for example, the way Muslim women are treated or how ISIS made headlines for throwing gay men off of buildings. It doesn’t take long to see that the author wasn’t so much painting a picture of what America might soon look like, but rather using an extreme, far-fetched alternate universe to hit on some more serious and timely matters. Those elements are well laid out and ring true, but the controversial and over-the-top delivery system (the unbelievable portrayal of America) makes that message much harder to find. 

Ultimately, Christina Dalcher, who like her story’s protagonist is also a linguist, is a good writer. Her message and the points she raises are incredibly important, but the execution falls a bit short. That’s not to say that there aren’t some really great parts to VOX, because there are. Much of the story is entertaining and thought-provoking. . . readers might even find themselves counting their words, amazed at how fast one can burn through 100. But by not setting the story a few hundred years down the road (where such radical changes could be explained through a number of scenarios), readers will likely mistake what’s in all reality not supposed to be a literal, prophetic look at the future of the country and will struggle to connect with the universe Dr. Jean McClellan lives in. 

Christina Dalcher’s VOX raises a number of important issues and scores major points for creativity and boldness, but overall it falls a bit flat, struggling to execute and to entertain at times.

Book Details

Author: Christina Dalcher
Pages: 336 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 0440000785
Publisher: Berkley
Release Date: August 21, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 5.0/10

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Impostor’s Lure by Carla Neggers 

“Master of suspense and New York Times bestselling author Carla Neggers delivers an exhilarating page-turner where the disappearance of a federal prosecutor launches the latest high-stakes case for FBI agents Emma Sharpe and Colin Donovan.

Newlyweds Emma and Colin are suspicious when prosecutor Tamara McDermott is a no-show at a Boston dinner party. Matt Yankowski, head of HIT, Emma and Colin’s small, elite Boston-based team, is a friend of Tamara’s, and he needs them to find her.

In London, a woman who was supposed to meet Emma’s art-detective grandfather to talk about forgeries is discovered near death. Her husband, who stayed behind in Boston, has vanished. The couple’s connection to Tamara adds to the puzzle.

As the search for Tamara intensifies, a seemingly unrelated murder leads Emma, Colin and HIT deep into a maze of misdirection created by a clever, lethal criminal who stays one step ahead of them.

As Emma draws on her expertise in art crimes and Colin on his experience as a deep-cover agent, the investigation takes a devastating turn that tests the strengths of their families and friendships as well as their FBI colleagues as never before.

Impostor’s Lure is full of clever twists that will keep readers guessing right to the stunning conclusion!”

Book Details

Author: Carla Neggers
Pages: 320 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 0778359972
Publisher: MIRA
Release Date: August 21, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 6.0/10

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Tuesday, August 28th

Tear Me Apart by J.T. Ellison (Featured Selection)

While family members of a talented skier worry about her career following a horrific accident, things quickly take a dark turn when the girl’s life is upended after a series of shocking revelations comes to light during her recovery.  

Mindy Wright has it all. At just seventeen years old, the brilliant champion skier has supportive parents who’ve always stood by her and encouraged her to reach for her dreams of winning a gold medal. Now, those dreams are finally close to becoming a reality, with Mindy a near-lock to qualify for the United States Olympic team.

Instead, her life becomes an absolute nightmare. 

The downfall began, quite literally, with a fall. During a race in Colorado, Mindy wipes out hard. The superstar is then transported to a local hospital where she’s informed that her leg is badly broken. At first, Mindy’s thoughts turn towards the slopes, calculating how long she could be out, and what that might do to her Olympic dreams. Agreeing to undergo a needed surgery, her hope is to heal quickly enough to start training sooner than later. Then comes the first blow. 

Sadly, doctors inform Mindy and her parents, Jasper and Lauren Wright, that the surgery did not go as planned. The break led to another finding, shocking everyone. Mindy, it turns out, has a rare, severe form of leukemia, and her only chance at beating it will require immediate treatment, including a stem cell transplant. Oddly, initial tests confirm that neither Jasper nor Lauren are matches for the transplant, which makes a whole lot more sense after a DNA test reveals that the couple isn’t actually Mindy’s biological parents. 

First the injury, then the cancer diagnosis. At a time when Mindy needs her mom and dad the most, she finds out they aren’t her real parents. With that twist comes more questions, as she wonders how such a situation is even possible. Could it all have been an accident? Did the hospital mistakenly switch her with another baby seventeen years ago? Meanwhile, Lauren (who reminds me a little bit of Robin White’s Clair Underwood in House of Cards) refuses to sit and wait for others to help Mindy, and nothing is off-limits for a mother hellbent on saving her child’s life. As the story unfolds, long-kept secrets begin to spill out, threatening to tear not one, but two families apart. 

Thankfully for Mindy, she does have her big sister–who happens to be a DNA technician for a state law enforcement department–to help her make sense of things and maybe even locate her biological family. But as the hits keep coming, Ellison saves one final twist for late in the game. Just when you think you have this one figured out, she’ll yank the rug right out from underneath your feet. . . 

Always a lock to deliver a high-octane thriller, Ellison’s latest novel shows just why she’s one of the premier suspense writers working today. Few authors can spin as many twists as she does, but her attention to character development and strong prose really sets her apart from the competition. Likewise, her pacing and tone are spot-on, making this book, like her others, impossible to put down. 

J.T. Ellison has outdone herself with this oneTear Me Apart is one of the darkest, most suspenseful, and deceiving psychological thrillers since Harlan Coben’s Fool Me Once

Book Details

Author: J.T. Ellison
Pages: 496 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 077830826X
Publisher: MIRA 
Release Date: August 28, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 8.0/10

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Walking Shadows by Faye Kellerman

“Detective Peter Decker and his wife, Rina Lazarus, risk life and limb to solve a pair of brutal murders that may be tied to a crime from more than twenty years ago in this intense and addictive mystery from New York Times bestselling author Faye Kellerman.

On a quiet suburban street in upstate Greenbury, New York, the brutally beaten body of a young man is discovered in the woods adjacent to an empty vacation home. Twenty-six-year-old Brady Neil a resident of the neighboring town of Hamilton, had no criminal record, few friends, worked full-time, and attended community college. But as Detective Peter Decker learns, the clean-cut kid is linked to the criminal world. When Brady was a baby, his father, Brandon Gratz, was convicted of robbing and killing the owners of a local jewelry store. While Gratz and his partner, Kyle Masterson, admitted to the robbery, they swore they left the owners, Glen and Lydia Levine, very much alive.

The experienced detective knows there’s more to this homicide case than the records show. As he digs into Gratz’s past, Decker begins to suspect that the son’s murder may be connected to the father’s sins. Before he can put together the pieces, Decker finds out that one of Brady Neil’s friends, Joseph Boch—aka Boxer—has gone missing. Heading to Boch’s house with his temporary new partner, Hamilton PD cop Lenora Baccus, they discover a bloodbath.

Who would savagely kill two innocent men—and why? Finding the answers will require all of Decker’s skill and knowledge, the help of his fellow Greenbury detectives, Tyler McAdams and Kevin Butterfield, and information gleaned from his wife Rina’s behind the scenes investigation to put all the pieces of this deadly puzzle together . . . and see justice done.”

Book Details

Author: Faye Kellerman
Pages: 384 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 006242498X
Publisher: William Morrow
Release Date: August 28, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 6.5/10

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Blackout by Ragnar Jonassan

“A huge bestseller in England, France, and Australia, the third book in the Dark Iceland series from a spectacular new crime writer.

Hailed for combining the darkness of Nordic Noir with classic mystery writing in the tradition of Agatha Christie, author Ragnar Jonasson’s books are haunting, atmospheric, and complex. Blackout, the latest Ari Thór thriller, delivers another dark mystery that is chillingly stunning with its complexity and fluidity.

On the shores of a tranquil fjord in Northern Iceland, a man is brutally beaten to death on a bright summer’s night. As the 24-hour light of the arctic summer is transformed into darkness by an ash cloud from a recent volcanic eruption, a young reporter leaves Reykajvik to investigate on her own, unaware that an innocent person’s life hangs in the balance. Ari Thor Arason and his colleagues on the tiny police force in Siglufjordur struggle with an increasingly perplexing case, while their own serious personal problems push them to the limit. What secrets does the dead man harbour, and what is the young reporter hiding? As silent, unspoken horrors from the past threaten them all, and the darkness deepens, it’s a race against time to find the killer before someone else dies.”

Book Details

Author:  Ragnar Jonassan
Pages: 272 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 1250171059
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Release Date: August 28, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 6.5/10

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River of Secrets by Roger Johns

“When a controversial politician is murdered in cold blood, Baton Rouge Police Detective Wallace Hartman struggles to find the killer amid conspiracies and corruption in River of Secrets, a gripping new mystery from Roger Johns.

Herbert Marioneaux, a Louisiana politician infamous for changing his mind on hot-button issues, has been murdered and his body posed to send a message. Baton Rouge homicide detective Wallace Hartman has to figure out who’s sending that message. DNA points to Eddie Pitkin, a social justice activist who also happens to be the half-brother of Wallace’s childhood best friend. But even with the combative history between Pitkin and Marioneaux, murder seems out of character for Pitkin, whose usual MO is to confront the wealthy and powerful with their inconvenient past. As Wallace digs deeper, she unearths a possible alibi witness, along with evidence of a deeply troubled relationship that points the finger of suspicion at Marioneaux’s son.

While Eddie’s supporters are convinced of his innocence, his enemies are equally certain of his guilt. Under pressure from all directions, Wallace pursues her investigation into the dark heart of the political establishment as Baton Rouge falls under the shadow of escalating violence. When it appears a police department insider may be sabotaging her efforts by leaking information about the case, and after menacing messages are left for her and her loved ones, Wallace is forced to untangle a trail of old and disturbing secrets unaided by those she most needs to trust.”

Book Details

Author: Roger Johns
Pages: 304 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 1250110122
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Release Date: August 28, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 6.0/10

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Paperback releases

The Hunt for Red October by Tom Clancy (Amazon Prime TV show tie-in cover)

“Don’t Miss the Original Series Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan Starring John Krasinski!

The #1 New York Times bestseller that launched the phenomenal career of Tom Clancy–the gripping military thriller that introduced the world to his unforgettable hero, Jack Ryan.

Somewhere under the freezing Atlantic, a Soviet sub commander has just made a fateful decision. The Red October is heading west. The Americans want her. The Russians want her back. The chase for the highly advanced nuclear submarine is on–and there’s only one man who can find her…

Brilliant CIA analyst Jack Ryan has little interest in fieldwork, but when covert photographs of Red October land on his desk, Ryan soon finds himself in the middle of a high-stakes game of hide-and-seek played by two world powers–a game that could end in all-out war.”

In stores August 7th.

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The Late Show by Michael Connelly

“An Amazon Best Book of 2017
A Barnes & Noble Best Book of 2017
A South Florida Sun-Sentinel Best Mystery of 2017

#1 New York Times bestselling author Michael Connelly introduces Renee Ballard, a fierce young detective fighting to prove herself on the LAPD’s toughest beat–the Late Show.

Renee Ballard works the midnight shift in Hollywood, beginning many investigations but finishing few, as each morning she turns everything over to the daytime units. It’s a frustrating job for a once up-and-coming detective, but it’s no accident. She’s been given this beat as punishment after filing a sexual harassment complaint against a supervisor.

But one night Ballard catches two assignments she doesn’t want to part with. First, a prostitute is brutally beaten and left for dead in a parking lot. All signs point to a crime of premeditation, not passion, by someone with big evil on his mind. Then she sees a young waitress breathe her last after being caught up in a nightclub shooting. Though dubbed a peripheral victim, the waitress buys Ballard a way in, and this time she is determined not to give up at dawn. Against orders and her partner’s wishes, she works both cases by day while maintaining her shift by night.

As the investigations intertwine, Ballard is forced to face her own demons and confront a danger she could never have imagined. To find justice for these victims who can’t speak for themselves, she must put not only her career but her life on the line.

Propulsive as a jolt of adrenaline and featuring a bold and defiant new heroien, The Late Show is yet more proof that Michael Connelly is ‘a master of the genre’ (Washington Post).”

In stores August 7th.

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Agent in Place by Mark Greaney

“The Gray Man is back in another nonstop international thriller from #1 New York Times bestselling coauthor of Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan novels

Fresh off his first mission back with the CIA, Court Gentry secures what seems like a cut-and-dried contract job: A group of expats in Paris hires him to kidnap the mistress of Syrian dictator Ahmed Azzam to get intel that could destabilize Azzam’s regime. 

Court delivers Bianca Medina to the rebels, but his job doesn’t end there. She soon reveals that she has given birth to a son, the only heir to Azzam’s rule–and a potent threat to the Syrian president’s powerful wife. 

Now, to get Bianca’s cooperation, Court must bring her son out of Syria alive. With the clock ticking on Bianca’s life, he goes off the grid in a free-fire zone in the Middle East–and winds up in the right place at the right time to take a shot at bringing one of the most brutal dictatorships on earth to a close…”

In stores August 7th.

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Light it Up by Nick Petrie

“‘Lots of characters get compared to my own Jack Reacher, but Petrie’s Peter Ash is the real deal.’–Lee Child

In the newest action-packed thriller starring war veteran Peter Ash, a well-planned and flawlessly executed hijacking reveals the hidden dangers of Colorado’s mellowest business, but Ash may find there’s more to this crime than meets the eye.

Combat veteran Peter Ash leaves a simple life rebuilding hiking trails in Oregon to help his good friend Henry Nygaard, whose daughter runs a Denver security company that protects cash-rich cannabis entrepreneurs from modern-day highwaymen. Henry’s son-in-law and the company’s operations manager were carrying a large sum of client money when their vehicle vanished without a trace, leaving Henry’s daughter and her company vulnerable.

Then, when Peter is riding shotgun on another cash run, the cargo he’s guarding comes under attack from hijackers and he narrowly escapes with his life. As the incidents mount, he has to wonder: For criminals as sophisticated as these, is this money really worth the risk? And if not, what about his cargo is worth more?”

In stores August 7th.

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7 comments

  1. Il read Steinhauer’s new book. Although not a “new release”, I’ll pick up The Hunt for Red October. The rest of the list doesn’t really appeal

  2. Ryan,
    For August I will read Ragnar Jonasson’s Blackout. I loved his first 2 books that you recommended earlier.
    I was so impressed with Paul Doiron’s Staying Hidden (on the July list) that I will spend August reading all
    of his earlier books. Thanks so much for compiling these lists. You have introduced us to so many great
    writers!

  3. Thanks for including some paperback releases! It’s nice to know when some books that you’ve had your eye on will be released in paperback.

  4. #RealBookSpyReadingChallenge From this months guide. I plan on reading: The Middleman, The Line That Held Us, and Tear Me Apart.

  5. Just finished “kill for me.“ Good but not great. I’ve read all of the books by this author,and perhaps was expecting too much from this book.

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