The Beautiful Dead
by Belinda Bauer
A television crime reporter desperate to recharge her flagging career becomes an unwitting accomplice to an attention-hungry serial killer at the center of the decade's biggest murder investigation. By the award-winning author of Rubbernecker
Black Widow: A Jack Parlabane Thriller by Christopher BrookmyreSuspense Fiction. Diana Jager is an ambitious, hard-working, and sharp-tongued surgeon, disliked and feared in equal measure. When she's maliciously exposed as the writer behind a blog railing against sexism in the workplace, she moves from London to Inverness for a new start, where, after a startlingly quick romance, she marries. But soon after cracks in their relationship appear, her new husband disappears, and Diana is accused of his murder. That's when reporter Jack Parlabane starts looking into her history. With the smart and acerbic Diana at the forefront, and shifting perspectives and twisty family secrets, this 7th novel featuring Jack is a complex and entertaining story.
Moral Defense: A Samantha Brinkman Legal Thriller by Marcia ClarkLegal Thriller. In this 2nd fast-paced tale to star Los Angeles attorney Samantha Brinkman, she's been hired to advocate for 15-year-old Cassie Sonnenberg. With her mother in a coma and her father and brother dead, Cassie's the only one who knows what happened. But Cassie's story keeps changing, and soon her case is not the only morally and legally ambiguous problem Samantha is juggling. With plenty of grey areas to get lost in, this riveting thriller is "hard to put down" (Booklist).
Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil by Melina MarchettaThriller. The bombing of a tour bus in France has left a number of British teenagers dead. When suspended London cop Bashir "Bish" Ortley arrives in France to see if his daughter survived, he gets caught up in the investigation. A fellow teen on the bus -- the daughter and granddaughter of alleged bombers -- is the main suspect, and Bish is soon using every means he can to find her. But is she guilty of the bombing, or was the bombing meant to kill her? Whether exploring the emotional aftermath of a tragedy or the racism in Europe, this intricate novel from Australian YA author Melina Marchetta could easily be ripped from the headlines.
The Fifth Gospel by Ian CaldwellReligious Thriller. Set within the Vatican in about 2004, this Da Vinci Code-like novel addresses the split between Roman and Eastern Catholicism. The story follows two brothers, both priests, who chose different branches; their desire to bring about a reconciliation within the church is dashed by murder, political machinations, and theological infighting. Both intellectual and suspenseful, this literary religious thriller incorporates a lost gospel, a controversial relic, and a strong sense of place, and is a great choice for fans of Iain Pears.
Playing with Fire by Tess GerritsenSuspense Fiction. While in Rome, professional violinist Julia Ansdell buys an old music book from an antiques shop. Inside is a loose piece of paper on which a waltz is notated -- a waltz that, when she plays it for her daughter, seems to cause a series of violent acts. Afraid for her daughter (and doubting her own mental stability), Julia throws herself into a search for more information about the music's composer, whose story is told in tandem with her own. Though very different from author Tess Gerritsen's popular Rizzoli and Isles series, this standalone novel combines historical details and plenty of twists to create something "tailor-made for literary-thriller fans" (Booklist).
What She Knew by Gilly MacmillanPsychological Suspense. Walking through a park in Bristol, England, eight-year-old Ben runs ahead of his mother; when she arrives at their destination, Ben is nowhere to be found, and the dog accompanying him has been badly injured. Told through the alternating perspectives of Ben's mother, Rachel, and the police inspector assigned to the case, the story traces the investigation and the media frenzy that follows (which mostly paints recently divorced Rachel as a bad mother). Tension mounts as a variety of suspects are considered, but it's clear that some people know more than they're saying in this compelling, fast-paced debut.
Pretty Girls by Karin SlaughterPsychological Suspense. In her second standalone novel, bestselling author Karin Slaughter tells the story of two estranged sisters -- Claire and Lydia -- reunited by the murder of Claire's husband, whom Lydia had accused of harassment years ago. Hidden computer files pique Claire's interest and provoke suspicion that he may have known something about the disappearance of their oldest sister, Julia, decades previously. Realistic characters, moments of unexpected humor, poignant chapters from their father's perspective, ample suspense, and the slow healing of damaged relationships make for a tense, unsettling, but utterly compelling read.
Contact your librarian for more great books!