Bright Days, Dark Thrills | Fiction Previews, Jul. 2018

Abbott, Jeff. The Three Beths. Grand Central. Jul. 2018. 400p. ISBN 9781538728697. $26; ebk. ISBN 9781538728673. lib. ebk. ISBN 9781538745038. lrg. prnt. Downloadable. THRILLER
Odd that teenage Mariah Dunning thinks she spots her vanished mother across a crowded food court; her mom, Beth, has been presumed murdered, with suspicions falling on her husband. What’s odder: two other women named Beth have recently vanished in the vicinity. From a New York Times best-selling author and three-time Edgar nominee, so the smallish first printing is surprising; with a six-city tour to Austin, Dallas, Houston, Phoenix, Miami, and Vero Beach, FL.

Abbott, Megan. Give Me Your Hand. Little, Brown. Jul. 2018. 352p. ISBN 9780316547185. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780316547284. lib. ebk. ISBN 9780316412513. CD/downloadable. THRILLER
Kit Owens gets both a new friend and an academic jolt when she meets charismatic Diane Fleming in her high school chemistry class. Then Diane shares a secret that blows them apart, and years later Kit finds herself in dangerous competition with her former friend for her dream job. Buzzing already; with a 50,000-copy first printing.

Atkins, Ace. The Sinners. Putnam. Jul. 2018. 384p. ISBN 9780399576744. $27; ebk. ISBN 9780399576768. THRILLER
Along with wedding plans and newbie deputies, county sheriff Quinn Colson faces the retributive wrath of the noxious Pritchard family patriarch, locked up by Colson’s late uncle and now out of prison. Next in the two-time Edgar-nominated series, which title-to-title has seen escalating sales.

Barclay, Linwood. A Noise Downstairs. Morrow. Jul. 2018. 464p. ISBN 9780062678256. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062678270. lrg. prnt. THRILLER
Overwhelmed by shock and depression after he surprises a murderer dumping bodies on a lonely, moon-scoured road, college professor Paul Davis is gifted with an old-fashioned typewriter by his worried wife. Great for writing that new novel—except Paul insists that the typewriter is doing its own typing at night, somehow in league with the murderer. With a 100,000-copy first printing.

Barker, J.D. The Fifth To Die. Houghton Harcourt. Jul. 2018. 528p. ISBN 9780544973978. $27; ebk. ISBN 9780544980662. THRILLER
A girl is found beneath the ice of the Jackson Park Lagoon, which has been frozen rock-hard for weeks before her disappearance. What’s more, she’s wearing the clothes of another just-vanished victim. Sounds like the spooky work of the Four Monkey Killer, last seen in The Fourth Monkey. Detective Porter is after him, even after he’s suspended for his unorthodox activities. From a Bram Stoker finalist; with a 50,000-copy first printing.

Cole, Daniel. Hangman. Ecco. Jul. 2018. 384p. ISBN 9780062653987. $27.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062654007. THRILLER
Bloody scenes copycatting the Ragdoll killings are popping up on both sides of the Atlantic, compelling Det. Emily Baxter to relive the Ragdoll case as she works with a new FBI/CIA/UK law enforcement task force based in New York. Ragdoll was an international best seller; with a 40,000-copy first printing.

Cooper, Ellison. Caged. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Jul. 2018. 368p. ISBN 9781250173836. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250173850. CD. THRILLER
FBI neuroscientist Sayer Altair studies the brains of serial killers, but perhaps even she’s not prepared for a blood-chilling case involving the death of a senator’s daughter, locked in a cage and slowly starved to death. A big-news debut, sold to seven countries.

Coulter, Catherine. Paradox. Gallery: S. & S. Jul. 2018. 448p. ISBN 9781501138126. $27.99; ebk. ISBN 9781501138140. THRILLER
An ex-con seeking revenge, human bones cluttering a lake bottom, and a trussed-up victim starving to oblivion in a closet—according to Coulter’s July 2017 newsletter, these are some of the creepy details you’ll find in the next in her New York Times best-selling “FBI Thriller” series.

Douglas, Claire. Last Seen Alive. Harper. Jul. 2018. 336p. ISBN 9780062851451. $26.99; pap. ISBN 9780062843173. $15.99. ebk. ISBN 9780062843197. THRILLER
With husband Jamie, Libby has just effected a cool house swap, leaving their modest Brooklyn apartment for a seaside estate. But she’s shocked by the ubiquitous surveillance cameras and the operating room in the basement and senses that a nasty secret she’s been guarding is about to be sprung. From the author of the award-winning The Sisters, as well as Local Girl Missing; with a 100,000-copy paperback and 25,000-copy hardcover first printing.

French, Nicci. The Day of the Dead. Morrow Paperbacks. Jul. 2018. 416p. ISBN 9780062846082; pap. ISBN 9780062676702. $15.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062676719. THRILLER
Psychologist Frieda Klein, who’s helped the London police on challenging cases since 2012’s Blue Monday, has been hiding out from psychopathic killer Dean Reeve. In this wrap-up to the series, she’s got to face him. With a 25,000-copy paperback and 30,000-copy hardcover first printing; look for a stand-alone next.

Graham, Heather. Pale as Death. Mira: HarperCollins. Jul. 2018. 384p. ISBN 9780778368731. $26.99; pap. ISBN 9780778368069. $8.99. ebk. ISBN 9781488081880. THRILLER
While trying to crack the case of a young actress found dead, her blood siphoned from her body, LAPD detective Sophie Manning is rather alarmingly visited by ghosts. Thank goodness she’s getting help from ghost whisperer Bruce McFadden, a consultant for the FBI’s paranormal team, the Krewe of Hunters. With a 400,000-copy paperback and 10,000-copy hardcover first printing.

Hasburgh, Patrick. Pirata. Harper Perennial. Jul. 2018. 352p. ISBN 9780062742773. pap. $15.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062742780. THRILLER
Eye-patched Nick Lutz looks like a pirate, but he lost more than an ocular orb when he was shot in the head during a carjacking. Now bereft of job, family, and purpose, he’s mostly surfing down Mexico way. Then his bad-news buddy Winsor gets clobbered to death by his girlfriend, Meagan, and Nick helps her hide the body. From 21-Jump Street creator/writer Patrick Hasburgh, a Shamus Award finalist; with a 30,000-copy first printing.

Jeong You-Jeong. The Good Son. Penguin. Jun. 2018. 320p. tr. from Korean by Chi-Young Kim. ISBN 9780143131953. pap. $16; ebk. ISBN 9780525503743. Downloadable. THRILLER
A No. 1 best-selling author in her native Korea whose Seven Years of Darkness was proclaimed a 2015 top-ten crime novel by the German newspaper Die Zeit, Jeong delivers a psychological thriller about a young man who finds his mother murdered at the bottom of the stairs. Since he is subject to fits that mar his memory, he can’t recall what happened and sets out to discover whether he is responsible. The author’s English-language debut.

Johansen, Iris & Roy Johansen. Double Blind. St. Martin’s. Jul. 2018. 352p. ISBN 9781250075994. $28.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466887350. THRILLER
Clutched by a murdered man, an envelope addressed to FBI/CIA hired gun Kendra Michaels contains the video of a wedding reception. Nothing special, except the groom has also been knocked off, and the victims starting to pile up all helped to convict a serial killer. So who’s pulling the trigger? Sixth in a blockbuster series.

Kamal, Sheena. It All Falls Down. Morrow. Jul. 2018. 336p. ISBN 9780062565778. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062565785. lrg. prnt. THRILLER
In this follow-up to last summer’s gritty The Lost Ones, fiercely self-contained Nora Watts tries to make sense of her father’s brutal life and death by traveling from her native Vancouver to Detroit, where he grew up as one of numerous Canadian native children adopted by American families. Meanwhile, private investigator Jon Brazuca needs to warn Nora that she’s in danger, but she’s swerved off the grid. With a 100,000-copy first printing.

Kellerman, Jonathan & Jesse Kellerman. A Measure of Darkness. Ballantine. Jul. 2018. 352p. ISBN 9780399594632. $28.99; ebk. ISBN 9780399594649. lrg. prnt. CD/downloadable. THRILLER
When a West Oakland party gets violent, Alameda County Coroner’s Deputy Clay Edison gets a call. The bad news: several people are dead. The really bad news: There’s a victim no one can identify, and she’s been strangled instead of shot. From those redoubtable über-best-selling authors, father and son.

LaPlante, Alice. Half Moon Bay. Scribner. Jul. 2018. 272p. ISBN 9781501190889. $26; ebk. ISBN 9781501190902. THRILLER
Devastated by the loss of her daughter, Jane moves from San Francisco to quiet, salt-sprayed Half Moon Bay, where she manages some semblance of a life. Then the town’s children start disappearing, and both Jane and her neighbors wonder whether she’s somehow brought terror to their midst. From the author of the psychological twisters A Circle of Wives and the New York Times best-selling Turn of Mind.

Rickstad, Eric. What Remains of Her. Morrow Paperbacks. Jul. 2018. 464p. ISBN 9780062843319. pap. $14.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062843333. THRILLER
Poetry professor Jonah Baum’s wife and daughter have disappeared, and though there’s no sign of kidnapping or murder, the sheriff is suspicious; daughter Sally’s left-behind drawings chill the blood, and Jonah isn’t quite making sense. Meanwhile, Sally’s best friend is staying mum about what she and Sally saw in the woods. Rickstad’s The Silent Girls was a No. 1 best-selling Nook and No. 3 Mystery Kindle novel; with a 75,000-copy first printing.

Silva, Daniel. Untitled. Harper. Jul. 2018. 496p. ISBN 9780062834829. $28.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062834881. lrg. prnt. CD. THRILLER
Art restorer and sometime Israeli secret agent Gabriel Allon is back, though he doesn’t yet have a brief. Silva keeps details of his No. 1 New York Times best sellers under wraps. With a 500,000-copy first printing and a ten-city tour.

Slaughter, Karin. Pieces of Her. Morrow. Jul. 2018. 400p. ISBN 9780062430274. $27.99; ebk. ISBN 9780062430298. lrg. prnt. CD. THRILLER
One Saturday afternoon on peaceful Gullaway Island, the mall is suddenly rent by terrible violence, and Andrea’s mother is shot the next day. That’s how Andrea learns that her mother has unimaginable secrets. Slaughter’s recent The Good Daughter reached No. 2 on the combined New York Times best-sellers list, her record high. With a 250,000-copy first printing.

Stroby, Wallace. Some Die Nameless. Mulholland: Little, Brown. Jul. 2018. 352p. ISBN 9780316440202. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780316440189. lib. ebk. ISBN 9780316476768. THRILLER
Ray Devlin is snoozing his life away in Florida when he’s rudely reminded that as a mercenary he helped bring a pitiless South American dictator to power. Meanwhile, Tracy Quinn struggles as an investigative reporter for a seen-better-days Philadelphia newspaper. They’re pulled together by a corpse in an empty rowhouse, promised redemption and a big story, respectively. From the author of the popular Crissa Stone novels.

Tangen, Geir. Requiem: A Thriller. Minotaur: St. Martin’s. Jul. 2018. 400p. tr. from Norwegian by Paul Norlen. ISBN 9781250124067. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781250124074. THRILLER
In this debut, self-published in January 2016 and immediately bought by one of Norway’s premier publishers, journalist Viljar Gudmundsson thinks it’s a joke when he receives an email whose anonymous sender promises to execute a woman for unexpiated crimes. Then a dead body materializes the next day, another email arrives, and Viljar soon finds himself working with investigator Lotte Skeisvoll.

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.

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