Bookselling burglar Bernie Rhodenbarr doesn’t generally get philosophical about his criminal career. He’s good at it, it’s addictively exciting—and it pays a whole lot better than pushing old tomes. He steals therefore he is, period.
He might well ponder, however, the deeper meaning of events at the luxurious Chelsea brownstone of Herb and Wanda Colcannon, which is apparently burgled three times on the night Bernie breaks in: once before his visit and once after. Fortunately he still manages to lift some fair jewelry and an extremely valuable coin. Unfortunately burglar or burglars number three leave Herb unconscious and Wanda dead . . . and the cops think Rhodenbarr dunnit.
There’s no time to get all existential about it—especially after the coin vanishes and the fence fencing it meets with a most severe end. But Bernie is going to have to do some deep thinking to find a way out of this homicidal conundrum.
Dan Brown - The Da Vinci Code
Harvard professor Robert Langdon receives an urgent late-night phone call while on business in Paris: the elderly curator of the Louvre has been brutally murdered inside the museum. Alongside the body, police have found a series of baffling codes. As Langdon and a gifted French cryptologist, Sophie Neveu, begin to sort through the bizarre riddles, they are stunned to find a trail that leads to the works of Leonardo Da Vinci - and suggests the answer to a mystery that stretches deep into the vault of history. Unless Langdon and Neveu can decipher the labyrinthine code and quickly assemble the pieces of the puzzle, a stunning historical truth will be lost forever...
Tami Hoag - Still Waters
Hidden in the Minnesota farmlands, Still Creek seems to offer a sanctuary to Elizabeth Stuart and her son following her divorce, but the locals are distinctly cool towards the newcomers. Then, when Elizabeth becomes involved in a murder case, she finds there's more to the place than meets the eye.
Karin Slaughter - Fractured
Ansley Park is one of Atlanta’s most upscale neighborhoods—but in one gleaming mansion, in a teenager’s lavish bedroom, a girl has been savagely murdered. And in the hallway, her mother stands amid shattered glass, having killed her daughter’s attacker with her bare hands. Detective Will Trent of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation is one of the first on the scene. Trent soon sees something that the Atlanta cops are missing, something in the trail of blood, in a matrix of forensic evidence, and in the eyes of the stunned mother. When another teenage girl goes missing, Trent knows that this case, which started in the best of homes, is about to cut quick and deep through the ruins of perfect lives broken wide-open: where human demons emerge with a vengeance.
Tami Hoag - A Thin Dark Line
When a sadistic act of violence leaves a woman dead... When a tainted piece of evidence lets her killer walk... How far would you go to see justice done? From New York Times bestselling author Tami Hoag comes a taut, terrifying thriller as chilling as Night Sins, as nerve-shattering as Guilty as Sin. When murder erupts in a small Southern town, Tami Hoag leads readers on a frightening journey to the shadowy boundary between attraction and obsession, law and justice--and exposes the rage that lures people over... Pamela Bichon's killer is free, the case against him dismissed on a technicality. In the eyes of the law it doesn't matter that the prosecutor's key piece of evidence proves Marcus Renard's guilt beyond a shadow of a doubt. All that matters is that the evidence was never listed on a search warrant and it was seized by a detective with a questionable past and a nasty reputation. But the investigation isn't over--not for Cajun cop Nick Fourcade, who stands accused of planting the evidence. He's stepped over the line before and this case could push him over the edge. His orders are to move on, but obsession fills his mind with the nightmare images of Pamela Bichon's agonizing death, of Marcus Renard's arrogant triumph, and of his own capacity for exacting vengeance. Deputy Annie Broussard can't walk away from the homicide either. She found the body. She still hears the phantom echoes of dying screams, still feels the shadow of a woman taken by violence and denied justice. But pursuing the investigation will mean forming an uneasy alliance with Fourcade, a man she doesn't trust. It will mean subjecting herself to growing harassment from her fellow cops. And it will mean letting herself be drawn into the confidence of a suspected killer. As Fourcade challenges her again and again to reach deeper into the case and into her own soul, Annie will find herself at the center of a maze of treachery and deceit. And the closer she draws to the brutal truth, the deadlier the chase will become. The search for the truth has begun--one that will lead down a twisted trail through the steamy bayous of Louisiana, and deep into the darkest reaches of the human heart.
Michael Connelly - The Poet
The apparent suicide of his policeman brother sets Denver crime reporter Jack McEvoy on edge. Surprise at the circumstances of his brother's death prompts Jack to look into a whole series of police suicides and puts him on the trail of a cop-killer whose victims are selected all too carefully. Not only that, but they all leave suicide notes drawn from the poems of writer Edgar Allan Poe in their wake. More frightening still the killer appears to know that Jack is getting nearer and nearer. An investigation that looks like being the story of a lifetime, might also be Jack's ticket to a lonely end.
Daniel Keyes - The Touch
Karen and Barney Stark were an ordinary young couple. More than anything they wanted a baby of their own. Finally, after months of waiting, Karen discovers she's pregnant. Suddenly a radiation accident turns their happiness into an endless nightmare.
Michael Connelly - Echo Park
In 1993 Harry Bosch was assigned the case of a missing person, Marie Gesto. The young woman was never found - dead or alive - and the case has haunted Bosch ever since. Thirteen years later Bosch is in the Open-Unsolved Unit when he gets a call from the DA's office. A man accused of two killings is willing to confess to several other murders in a deal to avoid the death penalty. One of his victims, he says, is Marie Gesto. Bosch begins to crack when he realises that he and his partner missed a clue back in 1993 which could have prevented the nine murders that followed the killing of Marie Gesto...
Agatha Christie - The Labours of Hercules
A dinner guest compares the labours of Poirot to those of his mythological counterpart, Hercules, the Greek hero. The great detective is not amused. Poirot has already decided to retire, but first he will take on twelve monumental cases in the contemporary world that correspond to the twelve labours of Hercules, as a suitable farewell. In the final short story, Hercule Poirot once again meets the love of his life, Countess Rossakoff.
Agatha Christie - The Murder at the Vicarage
“Anyone who murdered Colonel Protheroe would be doing the world at large a service.” Reverend Clement The tranquillity of St Mary Mead is shattered when Lucius Protheroe is found dead. A thoroughly unpleasant character, there is no shortage of suspects with a motive for murder. Could it have been his unfaithful wife? Her artist lover? The daughter, set to inherit? Or even the mild-mannered vicar? Inspector Slack is at a loss. Perhaps Miss Jane Marple, the local village busybody, can help...
Agatha Christie - Death Comes as the End
It is 2000 BC in Egypt and Imhotep the Ka-Priest brings home his beautiful young concubine Nofret. But not all the members of his family welcome her. When she is found dead Imhotep’s daughter, Renisenb, suspects it might not have been an accident. The death unleashes the greed and hate that have been building up within the family and the horrific events that follow tear it apart.
Agatha Christie - Murder in Mesopotamia
It was clear to Amy Leatheran that something sinister was going on at the Hassanieh dig; something associated with the presence of ‘Lovely Louise’, wife of celebrated archaeologist Dr Leidner. In a few days’ time Hercule Poirot was due to drop in at the excavation site. But with Louise suffering from terrifying hallucinations, and tension within the group becoming almost unbearable, Poirot might just be too late… ‘Smooth, highly original and completely absorbing.’ New York Times
John Grisham - The Broker
In his final hours in the Oval Office the outgoing President grants a controversial last minute pardon to Joel Backman, a notorious Washington power broker who has spent the last six years hidden away in a federal prison. What no one knows is that the President issues the pardon only after receiving enormous pressure from the CIA. It seems that Backman, in his power broker heyday, may have obtained secrets that compromise the world's most sophisticated satellite surveillance system. Backman is quietly smuggled out of the country in a military cargo plane, given a new name, a new identity, and a new home in Italy. Eventually, after he has settled into his new life, the CIA will leak his whereabouts to the Israelis, the Russians, the Chinese and the Saudis. Then the CIA will do what it does best: sit back and watch. The question is not whether Backman will survive - there's no chance of that. The question the CIA needs answered is, who will kill him?
Phillip Margolin - Heartstone
They were young, popular, the perfect couple --- an all-American boy and a beautiful cheerleader. But the youthful passion that led them to Lookout Point that terrible evening would prove fatal. For Ritchie Walters the end came swiftly, as death descended upon him in a savage orgy of horrific violence. Elaine Murray would live long enough to learn just how lucky her boyfriend had been ... Two brutal slayings have rocked a stunned city. But the murders are merely the nightmare's beginning, flinging open a terrifying Pandora's box of sordid secrets and dark revelations more deadly than the bloodlust that lives in the rock-hard heart of a killer.
Agatha Christie - Mrs. McGinty's Dead
Mrs McGinty dies from a brutal blow to the back of her head. Suspicion immediately falls on her shifty lodger, James Bentley, whose clothes reveal traces of the victim's blood and hair. Yet something is amiss: Bentley just doesn't look like a murderer. Poirot believes he can save the man from the gallows - what he doesn't realise is that his own life is now in great danger...
Agatha Christie - The Hollow
Lady Angkatell, intrigued by the criminal mind, has invited Hercule Poirot to her estate for a weekend house party. The Belgian detective's arrival at the Hollow is met with an elaborate tableau staged for his amusement: a doctor lies in a puddle of red paint, his timid wife stands over his body with a gun while the other guests look suitably shocked. But this is no charade. The paint is blood and the corpse real!
Agatha Christie - The Pale Horse
To understand the strange events at The Pale Horse inn, Mark Easterbrook knew he had to begin at the beginning. But where exactly was the beginning? Was it the savage blow to the back of Father Gorman's head? Or the priest's visit, just minutes before, to a woman on her death bed? Or was there a deeper significance to the violent squabble which Mark Easterbrook had himself witnessed earlier?
Agatha Christie - The Man in the Brown Suit
Pretty, young Anne Beddingfield has come to London looking for adventure. But adventure finds her when a strange-smelling man falls off an Underground platform and is electrocuted on the rails. The police verdict is accidental death. But who was the man in the brown suit who examined the body before running away? Armed with only one cryptic clue, Anne is determined to track him down and bring the mysterious killer to justice.
Agatha Christie - Peril at End House
Hercule Poirot’s relaxing holiday on the Cornish coast takes an unexpected turn when he meets young and pretty Nick Buckley. For it seems to Poirot that someone is trying to kill Nick and he determines that she needs his protection. But even hiding her away in a nursing home does not prevent another attempt on Nick’s life and Poirot has to resort to subterfuge and cunning to solve this tricky case.
Agatha Christie - The Mirror Crack'd from Side to Side
One minute, silly Heather Badcock had been babbling on at her movie idol, the glamorous Marina Gregg. The next, Heather suffered a massive seizure, poisoned by a deadly cocktail. It seems likely that the cocktail was intended for the beautiful actress. But whilst the police fumble to find clues, Miss Marple begins to ask her own questions, because as she knows - even the most peaceful village can hide dark secrets.