Top-Selling Authors Connelly, Cornwell, Scottoline, & More | Fiction Previews, Nov. 2014, Pt. 1

Baldacci, David. The Escape. Grand Central. Nov. 2014. 432p. ISBN 9781455521197. $28; ebk. ISBN 9781455521272. lib. ebk. ISBN 9781455579402. CD/downloadable: Hachette Audio. THRILLER
Following Zero Day and The Forgotten, here’s the third novel featuring Army Special Agent John Puller, who takes on the nation’s most problematic cases. No plot details yet, but lots of promo for the multi-million-copy best-selling Baldacci’s latest. With a 500,000-copy first brownritaprinting.

Brown, Rita Mae. Let Sleeping Dogs Lie. Ballantine. Nov. 2014. 320p. ISBN 9780553392623. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780553392630. MYSTERY
In this ninth “Sister” Jane Arnold Foxhunting mystery, the discovery of human remains in a venerable equine graveyard makes for a tough and touchy case involving three families and their prize thoroughbreds. Brown set the pace with her best-selling Mrs. Murphy series; her Foxhunting series is great for readers who like gentility with a wicked little twist.

Child, Lincoln & Douglas Preston. Blue Labyrinth. Grand Central. Nov. 2014. 368p. ISBN 9781455525898. $27; ebk. ISBN 9781455525904. lib. ebk. ISBN 9781455579662. CD/downloadable: Hachette Audio. THRILLER
Aloysius Pendergast may have often wished his worst enemy dead, but it’s big trouble when the man’s corpse appears on Pendergast’s doorstep, a bit of turquoise in his stomach the only clue to his death. Soon Pendergast is tracking a killer bent on righting a very old wrong. White Fire, the last Pendergast novel, has shipped 140,000 copies to date; this book ups the ante with a 200,000-copy first printing, and the new Preston & Child app should help things along.

Clark, Mary Higgins & Alafair Burke. The Cinderella Murder. S. & S. Nov. 2014. 352p. ISBN 9781476763125. $26.99. SUSPENSE
Reigning queen of suspense Clark joins forces for the first time with the best-selling Burke for another adventure featuring the reality drama, Under Suspicion, which asks those involved to re-create the circumstances of unsolved crimes. The victim in the show’s latest episode was a talented UCLA acting student whose body was found far from her car, with no indication whether she attended her final audition. Her boyfriend has been pretty close-mouthed, too. connellyburningSpooky.

Connelly, Michael. The Burning Room. Little, Brown. Nov. 2014. 400p. ISBN 9780316225939. $28; ebk. ISBN 9780316225922. lib. ebk. ISBN 9780316250412. CD/downloadable: Hachette Audio. SUSPENSE
How do you solve a murder when the victim has just died of complications sustained by a stray bullet fired nine years previously? That’s what Det. Harry Bosch and his new partner, rookie detective Lucia Soto, want to know. Connelly’s previous title, The Gods of Guilt, debuted in the top spot on the New York Times combined and ebook-only best sellers lists; with a 550,000-copy first printing.

Cornwell, Patricia. Flesh and Blood: A Scarpetta Novel. Morrow. Nov. 2014. 400p. ISBN 9780062325341. $28.99. lrg. prnt. CD: Harper Audio. MYSTERY
In her 22nd outing, Dr. Kay Scarpetta goes after the Copperhead, a serial sniper who kills seemingly random victims with a single deadly shot delivered at such a distance that there’s really no crime scene, only odd bits of copper left behind as a memento. What does Kay’s techie-brilliant niece, Lucy, have to do with it? With a million-copy first printing.

Crais, Robert. The Promise: An Elvis Cole and Joe Pike Novel. Putnam. Nov. 2014. 320p. ISBN 9780399161490. $27.95. CRIME
Crais brings together some favorite protagonists in a thriller that starts off with a missing woman. Asked to find her, Elvis Cole discovers that she’s a defense contractor staffer being blackmailed into supplying explosives for the bad guy. LAPD officer Scott James and his trusty patrol dog, Maggie, enter the case when they stumble upon a building full of explosives and get assaulted for their troubles. The New York Times best-selling author’s 20th novel.

Dueñas, Maria. The Heart Has Its Reasons. Atria. Nov. 2014. 416p. ISBN 9781451668339. $26. LITERARY
A professor at the University of Murcia in Spain, Dueñas debuted with The Time in Between, a duenasNew York Times best seller that became the basis of a TV series dubbed the Spanish Downton Abbey. Here, when her husband leaves her for another woman, college professor Blanca Perea flies from Madrid to San Francisco and throws herself into studying the life and loves of a mysterious Spanish writer long since dead. With an 11-city tour to Austin, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, San Diego, San Francisco, and Seattle.

Evanovich, Janet & Lee Goldberg. The Job. Bantam. Nov. 2014. 320p. ISBN 9780345543127. $28; ebk. ISBN 9780345543141. lrg. prnt. CD/downloadable: Random Audio. MYSTERY
Never mind that FBI Agent Kate O’ Hare despises conman Nicolas Fox. To catch some really big fish, her bosses have paired her with Fox—for the third time. The previous series titles, The Heist and The Chase, debuted high on major best sellers lists, and Pros and Cons, the ebook prequel to the series, has sold nearly 150,000 copies. This title will be introduced by the release of a new e-short (10/7/14) featuring Kate’s father, a popular character in the series.

Finch, Charles. The Laws of Murder: A Charles Lenox Mystery. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Nov. 2014. 304p. ISBN 9781250051301. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466857889. CD: Macmillan Audio. MYSTERY
In 1876, after serving in Parliament for six years, Charles Lenox gives up his seat and returns to his true love, forming a detective agency in London. After a slow start, an important case comes his way, though, sadly, it’s to investigate the murder of a Scotland Yard friend. Finch’s mystery debut, A Beautiful Blue Death, was an LJ Best Mystery; The Last Enchantments, published in January 2014 and his first book outside the mystery arena, shows a distinct talent for scene setting and the creation of not always likable characters that can still get under your skin.

McCall Smith, Alexander. The Handsome Man’s Deluxe Café: No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency. Pantheon. Nov. 2014. 272p. ISBN 9780307911544. $24.99; ebk. ISBNhandsomeman 9780307911551. MYSTERY
Mma Ramotswe’s next case: bucking up partner Grace Makutsi, who is overwhelmed by business demands and a lightning strike when she decides to try something different and opens The Handsome Man’s Deluxe Café. The 15th installment in a venerable series; with a nine-city tour to Aliso Viejo (CA), Atlanta, Boston, Miami, New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Santa Barbara, and Seattle.

Nicholls, David. Us. Harper. Nov. 2014. 352p. ISBN 9780062365583. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062365606. CD: Harper Audio. FAMILY LIFE
Nicholls hit it big with One Day, which has sold over two million copies in 37 languages—and nearly 400,000 copies before the release of the 2011 film starring Anne Hathaway and Jim Sturgess. His new work features gently unassuming scientist Douglas Petersen, whose wife of nearly three decades announces that she wants a divorce—just as they’re about to take son Albie on a big trip to Europe. A hopeful Douglas schemes to use the trip as a means of saving his marriage. BEA and book club promotion; a 500,000-copy first printing.

Patterson, James. Hope To Die. Little, Brown. Nov. 2014. 416p. ISBN 9780316210966. $29. ebk. ISBN 9780316210942; lib. ebk. ISBN 9780316365291. CD/downloadable: Hachette Audio. hoptodieTHRILLER
Det. Alex Cross’s last work, Cross My Heart, ends with a scary to-be-continued moment that’s coming to fruition here. Cross’s entire family has been abducted, and he’s bowing to a madman’s demands in order to save them. With an 800,000-copy first printing.

Rendell, Ruth. The Girl Next Door. Scribner. Nov. 2014. 288p. ISBN 9781476784328. $26. MYSTERY
Three-time Edgar Award winner Rendell returns to tingle our spines with suspense about a tin box containing the skeletal remains of a male and a female hand, uncovered near an earthen tunnel where decades before a group of London children played during World War II. They now come together as aging adults to offer up memories that might help in the investigation.

Roby, Kimberla Lawson. A Christmas Prayer. Grand Central. Nov. 2014. 192p. ISBN 9781455526048. $20. AFRICAN AMERICAN/CHRISTMAS
Roby takes a break from Rev. Curtis Black’s shenanigans to write a Christmas novella featuring Alexis Fletcher, for whom the holidays have been anything but joyous since the death of her mother, who truly entered into the spirit of things. Now that Alexis is about to marry, a surprise event has her humming carols again. With a 100,000-copy first printing.

Scottoline, Lisa. Betrayed: A Rosato & Associates Novel. St. Martin’s. Nov. 2014. 368p. betrayedISBN 9781250027702. $27.99. MYSTERY
With 2013’s Accused, Scottoline relaunched her groundbreaking Rosato & Associates series, featuring an all-female law firm. Here Judy Carrier (featured in only one other Rosato mystery) is anxiously pondering her personal and professional lives when she must rush to the side of an aunt diagnosed with breast cancer. The death of undocumented worker Emelia Juarez, a friend who had been helping the aunt through chemo, seems decidedly suspicious to Julie. With (not surprisingly) a one-day laydown on October 28.

VanLiere, Donna. The Christmas Light. St. Martin’s. Nov. 2014. 224p. ISBN 9781250010650. $16.99. POP FICTION/CHRISTMAS
The New York Times best-selling VanLiere offers another Christmas story, this one featuring five small-town characters brought together for a surprisingly different holiday. Jennifer and Ryan both struggle with single parenthood, teenage Kaylee has just had her life upended, and happily married Stephen and Lily look forward to starting a family.

Barbara Hoffert About Barbara Hoffert

Barbara Hoffert (, @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.