Berry, Jance, & Some Surprise Authors | Thriller Previews, Mar. 2018

Bell, Natasha. Exhibit Alexandra. Crown. Mar. 2018. 304p. ISBN 9781524761073. $26; ebk. ISBN 9781524761097. CD/downloadable: Random Audio. THRILLER
Alexandra Southwood has been imprisoned in a locked room, and husband Marc is increasingly frantic as her bloodied belongings are found. But all is not as it seems in this ramping-up debut, touted for its hairpin twists and turns and unreliable narrator. Preempted by its UK publisher, and international interest is strong.

Berry, Steven. The Bishop’s Pawn. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Mar. 2018. 352p. ISBN 9781250140227. $28.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250140234. CD: Macmillan Audio. THRILLER
For years, the FBI conducted illegal surveillance of Martin Luther King Jr., accumulating a secret file said to include startling revelations regarding King’s assassination. There’s FBI–Justice Department contention over the file, and now Berry stalwart Cotton Malone is involved, having first been drawn in 18 years ago when he was a young navy lawyer asked to help investigate the FBI—by retrieving a stolen coin and some select files. With a national one-day laydown on March 20.

Box, C.J. The Disappeared. Putnam. Mar. 2018. 384p. ISBN 9780399176623. $27; ebk. ISBN 9780698410114. lrg. prnt. THRILLER
Back after six top-five New York Times best sellers in a row, Wyoming game warden Joe Picket has two sticky cases: find the high-profile female British executive who disappeared while visiting a fancy guest ranch and figure out why local falconers are no longer allowed to hunt with eagles despite valid permits. Box’s sales keep building.

Cussler, Clive & Graham Brown. The Rising Sea. Putnam. Mar. 2018. 416p. ISBN 9780735215535. $29; ebk. ISBN 9780735215542. CD/downloadable: Penguin Audio. THRILLER
Even global warming can’t explain a sudden rise in sea level, and Kurt Austin is harnessing the energies of the NUMA scientific team to find out why. Deep in the East China Sea, where sharks flit about, they discover something meant to upset the balance of power in the Pacific. Last year, Cussler sold 1.7 million copies of frontlist titles across formats, so fans will be waiting.

Feeney, Alice. Sometimes I Lie. Flatiron: Macmillan. Mar. 2018. 272p. ISBN 9781250144843. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250144836. THRILLER
In this debut from BBC news producer Feeney, a woman lies in a coma, aware of her surroundings yet unable to speak and uncertain how she ended up in the hospital. But she’s convinced that her husband has something to do with it. She also says, “Sometimes I lie,” so what are we to believe? Already on your radar; it was promoted at last spring’s BookExpo.

Fox, Candice. Crimson Lake. Forge. Mar. 2018. 352p. ISBN 9780765398482. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9780765398505. CD: Macmillan Audio. THRILLER
Accused though cleared of a teenage girl’s abduction, Ted Conkaffey is no longer a Sydney detective but a free man ambling about the muggy wetlands of Crimson Lake (lots of crocodiles there). He ends up joining forces with private investigator Amanda Pharrell, a convicted murderer, to find a missing author. Soon the townsfolk are talking. Fox isn’t just a Ned Kelly Award winner; she’s cowriter with James Patterson of the No. 1 New York Times best seller Never Never.

Gaylin, Alison. If I Die Tonight. Morrow. Mar. 2018. 384p. lib. ed. ISBN 9780062641106. $26.99; pap. ISBN 9780062641090. $16.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062641113. THRILLER
In a quiet Hudson Valley town, faded Eighties pop star Aimee En walks into a police station and announces that bad boy Wade Reed stole her car, then ran over high school football hero Liam Miller, who lies in a coma. Now Liam’s a local hero and Wade a pariah, but c’mon, you know it’s more complicated. From Edgar nominee and USA Today best seller Gaylin.

Goodman, Carol. The Other Mother. Morrow. Mar. 2018. 352p. ISBN 9780062819833. $26.99; pap. ISBN 9780062562647. $15.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062562654. THRILLER
Desperate to escape her controlling husband, Daphne Marist runs away from home with baby daughter Chloe and takes a job at a grand Catskills mansion under an assumed name. Meanwhile, she’s made friends with chic Laurel, but their relationship is getting unhealthily close. From Hammett Prize winner Goodman; The Widow’s House, published in spring 2017, has gone through several printings.

Graham, Heather. A Dangerous Game. Mira: Harlequin. Mar. 2018. 336p. ISBN 9780778331209. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9781488028021. THRILLER
In this third in the “New York Confidential” series from the New York Times best-selling Graham, psychologist Kieran Finnegan is standing on a street corner when a woman frantically shoves a baby into her arms, then turns to run—and is shot dead. Kieran and Special Agent Craig Frasier start investigating and trip over a human trafficking ring. With a 100,000-copy first printing.

Hagberg, David. Flash Points. Forge. Mar. 2018. 304p. ISBN 9780765384881. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9780765384904. THRILLER
After a right-wing conservative wins the U.S. presidential election, disgruntled members of his staff hire an assassin to spark terrorist attacks within the country while a Pentagon general works to create the illusion of imminent danger in flash-point countries worldwide, all to make the president look incompetent and hence impeachment-worthy. But retired CIA assassin Kirk McGarvey has other ideas. You have to admit that New York Times best-selling author Hagberg courts controversy.

Howard, Linda. The Woman Left Behind. Morrow. Mar. 2018. 400p. ISBN 9780062419019. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062419033. lrg. prnt. THRILLER
Communication expert for a team sent out on tough battle missions, Jina Modell is “the woman left behind” when the base where she’s stationed is attacked and she’s assumed dead. The rest of the team, off-base at the time, is then quietly pulled back. But Jina has escaped, and team leader Levi Butcher, a crusty soldier but a man in love, goes after her when he learns that she’s alive. With a 100,000-copy first printing.

Hunter, Cara. Close to Home. Penguin. Mar. 2018. 304p. ISBN 9780143131052. pap. $16; ebk. ISBN 9781524704841. Downloadable: Penguin Audio. THRILLER
During a costume party at her family’s Oxford home, eight-year-old Daisy Mason vanishes like smoke, and her snobbish mother, icy father, and clamshell-tight little brother aren’t very helpful. But DI Fawley knows that in situations like this, the culprit is usually close to home. First in a new series by a pseudonymous British novelist with big credentials; the second volume has already been signed.

Jance, J.A. Duel to the Death. Touchstone. Mar. 2018. 352p. ISBN 9781501150982. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781501151002. CD: S. & S. Audio. THRILLER
Nope, it’s not J.P. Beaumont or Joanna Brady or the Walker family, all featured in various series by the New York Times best-selling Jance. Up here is Ali Reynolds, once a Los Angeles news anchor and now an amateur sleuth, enjoying her lucky 13th title in the series. No plot details but a multicity tour for sure.

Katsu, Alma. The Hunger. Putnam. Mar. 2018. 384p. ISBN 9780735212510. $27; ebk. ISBN 9780735212527. Downloadable: Penguin Audio. THRILLER
A former senior intelligence analyst now working for a think tank, Katsu follows up her fantasy-touched “Taker Trilogy” with a horror-touched historical thriller. Struggling toward what looks to be a bad ending, the Donner Party members decide that they’ve been cursed, naming luckless Tamsen Donner as a witch. Soon, though, they get the feeling that there’s something creepy in the big beyond, “something disturbing and diseased…and very hungry.” For the brave.

Kepler, Lars. The Sandman. Knopf. Mar. 2018. 464p. ISBN 9781524732240. $27.95; ebk. ISBN 9781524732257. Downloadable: Random Audio. THRILLER
When Mikael Kohler-Frost vanished 13 years ago with his little sister, serial killer Jurek Walter was blamed. Thanks to DI Joona Linna, Jurek is in jail, but now Mikael has resurfaced and claims that his sister remains captive to the gruesome Sandman. Suspecting that the Sandman is Jurek’s accomplice, Joona puts a smart young inspector undercover in the psychiatric ward where Jurek is held. Fourth in a series that has sold more than ten million copies worldwide and has received best book credentials here; Kepler is the pseudonym for a Swedish husband-and-wife team.

Maberry, Jonathan. Glimpse. St. Martin’s. Mar. 2018. 352p. ISBN 9781250065261. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250136329. THRILLER
The New York Times best-selling Maberry, whose shelves groan with Bram Stoker Awards, infuses this thriller with the supernatural. Recovering addict Rain Thomas thinks she sees a boy running through a subway train, laughing or screaming, and realizes that he looks like her boyfriend, dead in Iraq, whose child she gave up at birth. Now Doctor Nine, whom she saw in a drug-induced haze, seems to be a real figure chasing the boy. What’s real, what isn’t, and will Rain find that little boy?

Mackintosh, Clare. Let Me Lie. Berkley. Mar. 2018. 384p. ISBN 9780451490537. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780451490551. lrg. prnt. CD/downloadable: Penguin Audio. THRILLER
Mackintosh debuted with I Let You Go, which has sold over a million copies worldwide and won Theakston’s Old Peculiar Crime Novel of the Year (it beat out JK Rowling writing as Robert Galbraith). Its follow-up, I See You, won great reviews. So no surprise that Mackintosh gets her first simultaneous UK–U.S. publication with this story of a new mother struggling to comprehend her parents’ recent dual suicide. Why is someone trying to interfere as she puzzles over the past?

Meltzer, Brad. The Escape Artist. Grand Central. Mar. 2018. 432p. ISBN 9781455559527. $28; ebk. ISBN 9781455559510. lib. ebk. ISBN 9781538760406. CD/downloadable: Hachette Audio. THRILLER
A trained soldier, Nola Brown was the U.S. Army’s artist-in-residence, rushing in to capture battle details that clarify what happened during the fighting. Her body was supposedly found on a plane that plummeted after taking off from a secret military base in Alaska. But air force employee Jim “Zig” Zigarowski learns that Nola, his daughter’s childhood friend, is alive and needs help; on one mission, she saw something she shouldn’t have. With a 200,000-copy first printing and a seven- to ten-city tour.

Parks, Brad. Closer Than You Know. Dutton. Mar. 2018. 416p. ISBN 9781101985625. $26; ebk. ISBN 9781101985649. Downloadable: Penguin Audio. THRILLER
With a husband, baby, and steady job, Melanie Barrick finds her life on track after a difficult upbringing in foster care. And then it derails, with her baby removed by Social Services and the sheriff’s deputies claiming to have found a substantial haul of cocaine at her house. Meanwhile, her attorney remains troubled by a cold case involving a serial rapist who had in fact attacked Melanie. But now he might be the key to solving her difficulties. From a Shamus, Nero, and Lefty Award winner; a five-city tour.

Scott, J. Todd. High White Sun. Putnam. Mar. 2018. 480p. ISBN 9780399176357. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780698408289. THRILLER
DEA federal agent Scott’s new work picks up where the well-reviewed The Far Empty, his Texas-set, tough-as-leather debut, left off. Deputy Chris Cherry has become sheriff with the death of the notoriously corrupt Sheriff Stanford Ross, and he’s trying to clean up the department. But with the federal hush-up of a local guide’s death and run-ins with a top member of the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas and a white-supremacist pastor, Chris finds his troubles only beginning. With a national tour.

Sparrow, Sarah. A Guide for Murdered Children. Blue Rider. Mar. 2018. 400p. ISBN 9780399574528. $27; ebk. ISBN 9780399574542. Downloadable: Penguin Audio. THRILLER
The pseudonymous Sparrow, an award-winning novelist looking to do something new, has dreamed up a world where the souls of murdered children can return to wreak havoc on those who cut short their lives. Former NYPD detective Willow Wylde learns all about it when he ends up heading a Cold Case squad in suburban Detroit and finds the two rookie cops assigned to him especially obsessed with the long-ago murder of a brother and sister.

St. James, Simone. The Broken Girls. Berkley. Mar. 2018. 336p. ISBN 9780451476203. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780698198487. Downloadable: Penguin Audio. THRILLER
The Arthur Ellis and RITA Award–winning St. James goes for contemporary thrills in a new work; plus, she’s making her hardcover debut. In 1950s Vermont, four girls at Idlewild Hall, a boarding school for the wayward, desperately bond until tragedy strikes. In 2014, journalist Fiona Sheridan discovers that the school is being restored by an anonymous benefactor and decides it’s time to investigate her older sister’s murder there. And the secrets she finds….

Tate, Courtney Evan. Such Dark Things. Mira: Harlequin. Mar. 2018. 320p. ISBN 9780778316541. pap. $15.99; ebk. ISBN 9781488078668. THRILLER
Using a pseudonym, New York Times and USA Today best-selling YA and New Adult author Courtney Cole offers the story of happily married ER physician Corinne Cabot. All’s well but for the recurring nightmare about the night her father shot two people dead. Her father is still in jail, her husband is starting to seem off, and Corinne has a panicky sense that her grip on reality is slipping. With an 80,000-copy first printing.

White, Randy Wayne. Caribbean Rim. Putnam. Mar. 2018. 336p. ISBN 9780735212787. $27; ebk. ISBN 9780735212800. lrg. prnt. CD/downloadable: Penguin Audio. THRILLER
In his 25th outing, marine biologist Doc Ford agrees to help buddy Carl Fitzpatrick, whose shipwreck chasing has gotten him in trouble with the Florida Division of Historical Resources. What’s worse, the division’s director has disappeared, along with a list of uncharted wreck sites Fitz compiled and some rare Spanish coins he found. Doc is wrapping up 13 consecutive years as a New York Times best seller; let’s hope he survives.

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Barbara Hoffert About Barbara Hoffert

Barbara Hoffert (bhoffert@mediasourceinc.com, @BarbaraHoffert on Twitter) is Editor, LJ Prepub Alert; past chair of the Materials Selection Committee of the RUSA (Reference and User Services Assn.) division of the American Library Association; and past president, treasurer, and awards chair of the National Book Critics Circle.

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