Insidious Intent by Val McDermidWhat it's about: A vengeful serial killer targets single women attending weddings -- and DCI Carol Jordan, clinical psychologist Tony Hill, and their embattled team have little to go on.
Why you might like it: A plethora of police procedural details and the complicated relationship between the self-destructive DCI and the profiler who cares for her makes this a complex, rewarding read.
Series alert: The 10th in a fast-paced series, this is a "must-read for series fans" (Booklist). Starting at the beginning (with The Mermaids Singing) will benefit newcomers who enjoy dynamic relationships between series stars.
You Can Run by Steve MosbyWhat it's about: When a car accident uncovers the lair of a depraved serial killer, DCI Will Turner hunts the now-identified Red River Killer, stymied by a personal connection to the crimes.
Why you might like it: Like dark books? With a high creepiness quotient, a clever plot, gruesome crimes, and a noirish tone, this one from award-winning British author Steve Mosby fits the bill.
Reviewers say: "This is one of those exceedingly rare novels that's virtually impossible to put down" (Publishers Weekly).
Poison: A Novel by Galt NiederhofferWhat it's about: The truth is elusive in this psychological suspense novel, in which happily married mother of three Cass Connor begins to think her husband may be cheating on her -- and might also be trying to kill her. But is she right -- or is it all in her mind?
Why you might like it: The slowly unraveling relationship is described in such a gripping manner that your blood pressure is sure to rise.
For fans of: Chevy Stevens' Never Let You Go, B.A. Paris' Behind Closed Doors.
Hunter Killer: The War with China: The Battle for the Central Pacific by David PoyerWhat it's about: In this "terrifyingly real" (Booklist) tale, the U.S. war with China has escalated -- and China appears to be winning.
Series alert: This is the 17th in the Tales of the Modern Navy series, and the 3rd in the War with China story arc. Established fans will welcome the return of Dan Lenson -- now an admiral in charge of a U.S.-South Korea military force -- and SEAL Teddy Oberg, suffering in a POW camp. New to the series but eager for well-depicted military action? Start with the 1st in the trilogy, Tipping Point.
Colorado Boulevard: A Crush Novel by Phoef SuttonWhat it's about: In this 3rd entry in an offbeat, clever series, hulking bouncer Caleb "Crush" Rush comes to the rescue when his former stepbrother (and current roommate) is kidnapped.
Why you might like it: Smart, witty dialogue and the author's appreciation for the absurd enhances the over-the top, non-stop action and bigger-than-life characters.
For fans of: The frenetic action and engaging anti-heroes of Josh Bazell's Beat the Reaper or Eoin Colfer's Plugged series.
Dark Spies: A Spycatcher Novel by Matthew DunnWhat it's about: After choosing to disobey orders to let a fellow operative die, intelligence agent Will Cochrane is the focus of a massive CIA manhunt -- but why?
Why you might like it: Plenty of action, a complex plot, and the perspective of the author's real-life experience as an MI6 insider means the novel moves with "relentless momentum" (Kirkus Reviews).
Series alert: Dark Spies is the 4th in the action-packed Spycatcher series. The 8th and most recent, Act of Betrayal, published just a few months ago, but newcomers should start with Spycatcher.
No Easy Target by Iris JohansenWhat it's about: When a vicious enemy from her past resurfaces, beautiful animal psychic Margaret Douglas goes on the run to try to escape him. But former CIA operative John Lassiter has other plans for her -- and the enemy they share.
Why you might like it: Fans of the author's Eve Duncan series will recognize Margaret, who turns out to be a strong and capable heroine in her own right. The fractious partnership (which has its fair share of sexual tension) with Lassiter adds spice.
The Accident: A Novel by Chris PavoneWhat it's about: A New York literary agent is the recipient of an anonymous manuscript that could make a lot of money -- and also destroy the career of a powerful and very dangerous man.
Why you might like it: The characters are extremely well-developed, with fully fleshed-out backstories.
Series alert: While The Accident is not part of a series, familiar faces from the author's 2012 debut (The Expats) appear.
The Old Man by Thomas PerryWhat it's about: Thirty-five years ago, a loyal American operative was branded a criminal by the NSA. Off the grid, he started life anew -- but several burned identities later, people are still trying to kill him, and it's time to neutralize the threat once and for all.
Why you might like it: Now 60, the Old Man is no easy target: he's kept up his training and his fitness regimen and is more than capable of out-thinking and outfighting his adversaries.
Reviewers say: Suspenseful and cleverly plotted, The Old Man is "swift, unsentimental, and deeply satisfying" (Kirkus Reviews).
War Hawk: A Tucker Wayne Novel by James Rollins and Grant BlackwoodWhat it's about: In this 2nd novel to star former Army Ranger Tucker Wayne and his four-legged partner, Kane, semi-autonomous military drones have been hacked and stand ready to wreak destruction all over the world -- at the beck and call of an incredibly powerful madman.
Is it for you? Set all over the world and co-starring a beautifully depicted dog, this fast-paced and action-packed book is a great match for fans of author James Rollins' Sigma Force novels.
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