Alice Ellis is a Midwestern refugee living in Manhattan. Still recovering from a painful divorce, she depends on the companionship and camaraderie of tightly knit circle of friends. At the center of this circle is a rock band struggling to navigate New York’s erratic music scene, and an apartment/practice space with approximately fifty key-holders. One sunny day, Alice enters the apartment and finds two of the band members shot dead. As the double-murder sends waves of shock through their lives, this group of friends begins to unravel, and dangerous secrets are revealed one by one. When Alice begins to notice things amiss in her own apartment, the tension breaks out as it occurs to her that she is not the only person with a key, and she may not get a chance to change the locks.
Claire McGowan - The Dead Ground
A stolen baby. A murdered woman. A decades-old atrocity. Something connects them all... A month before Christmas, and Ballyterrin on the Irish border lies under a thick pall of snow. When a newborn baby goes missing from hospital, it's all too close to home for forensic psychologist Paula Maguire, who's wrestling with the hardest decision of her life. Then a woman is found in a stone circle with her stomach cut open and it's clear a brutal killer is on the loose. As another child is taken and a pregnant woman goes missing, Paula is caught up in the hunt for a killer no one can trace, who will stop at nothing to get what they want.
J. A. Kerley - The Death Collectors
Thirty years after his death, Marsden Hexcamp's ‘Art of the Final Moment’ remains as sought after as ever. But this is no ordinary collection. Hexcamp's portfolio was completed with the aid of a devoted band of acolytes – and half a dozen victims, each of whom was slowly tortured to death so that their final agonies could be distilled into art. When tiny scraps of Hexcamp's ‘art’ begin appearing at murder scenes alongside gruesomely displayed corpses, Detective Carson Ryder and his partner Harry Nautilus must go back three decades in search of answers. Meanwhile an auction has been announced and the death collectors are gathering. These wealthy connoisseurs of serial-killer memorabilia will pay millions to acquire Hexcamp's art – unless Carson and Harry can beat them in their quest for the anti-grail.
J. A. Kerley - The Death Box
_Carson Ryder thought he’d seen everything…_ A specialist in twisted crimes, Detective Carson Ryder thought he’d seen the lowest depths of human depravity. But he’s barely started his new job in Miami when called to a horrific scene: a concrete pillar built of human remains, their agony forever frozen in stone. Finding the secret of the pillar drags him into the sordid world of human trafficking, where one terrified girl holds the key to unraveling a web of pain, prostitution and murder. There’s just one problem: Ryder’s not the only one chasing the girl. And the others will kill to keep the secret safe.
J. A. Kerley - The Killing Game
_He’s coming to get you…_ After a humiliating encounter with a cop, Romanian immigrant Gregory Nieves launches a vendetta against the Mobile Police Department, Alabama. Nieves can’t fight a department, so he selects one man who symbolizes all men in blue: Carson Ryder, the MPD’s specialist in bizarre and twisted crimes. Carson has never seen a killing spree like this one: Nothing connects the victims, the murder weapon is always different, and the horrific crime scenes are devoid of evidence. It almost seems he’s being taunted. Even laughed at. Carson doesn’t know it yet, but he is caught up in a sadistic game of life and death. And there can only be one victor…
J. A. Kerley - In The Blood
TV evangelist Reverend Scaler made his fortune from firebrand rhetoric on the sins of modern America. But Scaler has preached his last sermon after being bound and beaten to death in an apparent S&M session. Detective Carson Ryder has his own problems. He's edgy and unpredictable, the crime scene barely seeming to affect him any more than finding an infant abandoned in a boat – nearby, a burnt-out shack, a body and signs of a struggle. Scaler's tangled personal life reveals bizarre connections between the cases. And it seems the baby fighting for its life in hospital has powerful enemies. Ryder can't seem to save himself – but can he save the life of an innocent child?
J. A. Kerley - Little Girls Lost
Children are disappearing in Mobile, Alabama, the latest snatched from her own bedroom. There are no clues – and, as yet, no bodies. Homicide Detective Carson Ryder is called in to investigate the abduction of little LaShelle Shearing only to find the case getting tangled up in murky departmental and civic politics. And with his partner Harry Nautilus fighting for his life after being viciously attacked, Carson is feeling increasingly isolated. Public rage is now reaching dangerous levels, and Ryder’s bosses turn for help to ex-Detective Conner Sandhill whose uncanny ability to spot connections and details missed by others is legendary – but who left the department under a cloud. Ryder and Sandhill form an uneasy alliance in the hunt for the missing children, a hunt which becomes all the more urgent for tragic personal reasons. But at the root of these disappearances is something truly evil… and its source is closer to home than either could have imagined.
J. A. Kerley - Her Last Scream
_They thought they were safe at last…_ Across the US, a secret network of crisis centres permanently relocates women in serious danger from domestic abuse. But now someone is killing them before they reach their destinations. Detectives Carson Ryder and Harry Nautilus are having trouble gaining the trust of the volunteers who run the scheme. The only way in is for an undercover police officer to pose as a threatened woman, making herself a target and drawing the killer out. Reinetta Early is the ideal candidate – but she also happens to be Harry’s niece. He always promised his sister that he would keep Reinetta safe from harm. Suddenly he’s unsure if he can even keep her alive…
Michael Crichton - Prey
In the Nevada desert, an experiment has gone horribly wrong. A cloud of nanoparticles -- micro-robots -- has escaped from the laboratory. This cloud is self-sustaining and self-reproducing. It is intelligent and learns from experience. For all practical purposes, it is alive. It has been programmed as a predator. It is evolving swiftly, becoming more deadly with each passing hour. Every attempt to destroy it has failed. And we are the prey.
J. A. Kerley - Buried Alive
Soon after witnessing the escape of violent psychopath Bobby Crayline from prison, Alabaman detective Carson Ryder takes a rare break in the mountains. But his vacation is interrupted when an anonymous phone call summons him to the scene of a grisly murder. With more savage killings, and the heavy-handed FBI only inflaming the situation, Ryder and local detective Donna Cherry sift through the increasingly bizarre clues. Is there more than one killer on the loose? And how does Carson’s clinically insane brother, Jeremy, now on the run, fit into the picture? It is down to Ryder to unearth horrors from the past that others believe should remain buried…
J. A. Kerley - The Broken Souls
The gore-sodden horror that greets homicide detective Carson Ryder on a late-night call out is enough to make him want to quit the case. Too late. Now he and his partner Harry are up to their necks in a Southern swamp of the bizarre and disturbing. An investigation full of twists and strange clues looks like it's leading to the city's least likely suspects – a powerful family whose philanthropy has made them famous. But behind their money and smiles is a dynasty divided by hate. Their strange and horrific past is about to engulf everyone around them in a storm of violence and depravity. And Ryder's right in the middle of it …
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...
Dennis Lehane - A Drink Before the War
A cadre of powerful Massachusetts politicians offers Patrick Kenzie and Angela Gennaro big money for a small job: find the missing cleaning woman who allegedly stole confidential Statehouse documents. But there's much more to this crime than anyone realizes. What the woman was really after was justice--and out on the Boston streets, the truth can turn stark and ugly...
David Baldacci - Hour Game
As a series of brutal murders darkens the Wrightsburg, Virginia countryside, the killer taunts police by leaving watches on the victims set to the hour corresponding with their position on his hit list. What's more, he strives to replicate notorious murders of the past, improving on them through savage attention to detail. Sean King and Michelle Maxwell are already investigating a crime involving an aristocratic and dysfunctional Southern family, but when they're deputized to help in the serial killer hunt they realize the two cases may be connected. Adding to the tension is the appearance of a second killer, this one imitating the murders of the first. Soon, the two killers are playing a game of cat and mouse, with King and Maxwell racing to solve the intricate puzzle of their identities - before the body count escalates.
John Le Carré - A Most Wanted Man
New spies with new loyalties, old spies with old ones; terror as the new mantra; decent people wanting to do good but caught in the moral maze; all the sound, rational reasons for doing the inhuman thing; the recognition that we cannot safely love or pity and remain good "patriots" -- this is the fabric of John le Carré's fiercely compelling and current novel A Most Wanted Man. A half-starved young Russian man in a long black overcoat is smuggled into Hamburg at dead of night. He has an improbable amount of cash secreted in a purse around his neck. He is a devout Muslim. Or is he? He says his name is Issa. Annabel, an idealistic young German civil rights lawyer, determines to save Issa from deportation. Soon her client's survival becomes more important to her than her own career -- or safety. In pursuit of Issa's mysterious past, she confronts the incongruous Tommy Brue, the sixty-year-old scion of Brue Frères, a failing British bank based in Hamburg. Annabel, Issa and Brue form an unlikely alliance -- and a triangle of impossible loves is born. Meanwhile, scenting a sure kill in the "War on Terror," the rival spies of Germany, England and America converge upon the innocents. Thrilling, compassionate, peopled with characters the reader never wants to let go, A Most Wanted Man is a work of deep humanity and uncommon relevance to our times.
Karin Slaughter - Fallen
There’s no police training stronger than a cop’s instinct. Faith Mitchell’s mother isn’t answering her phone. Her front door is open. There’s a bloodstain above the knob. Her infant daughter is hidden in a shed behind the house. All that the Georgia Bureau of Investigations taught Faith Mitchell goes out the window when she charges into her mother’s house, gun drawn. She sees a man dead in the laundry room. She sees a hostage situation in the bedroom. What she doesn’t see is her mother. . . . “You know what we’re here for. Hand it over, and we’ll let her go.” When the hostage situation turns deadly, Faith is left with too many questions, not enough answers. To find her mother, she’ll need the help of her partner, Will Trent, and they’ll both need the help of trauma doctor Sara Linton. But Faith isn’t just a cop anymore—she’s a witness. She’s also a suspect. The thin blue line hides police corruption, bribery, even murder. Faith will have to go up against the people she respects the most in order to find her mother and bring the truth to light—or bury it forever. Karin Slaughter’s most exhilarating novel yet is a thrilling journey through the heart and soul, where the personal and the criminal collide, and conflicted loyalties threaten to destroy reputations and ruin lives. It is the work of a master of the thriller at the top of her game, and a whirlwind of unrelenting suspense.
Claire McGowan - The Lost
_Not everyone who's missing is lost..._ When two teenage girls go missing along the Irish border, forensic psychologist Paula Maguire has to return to the hometown she left years before. Swirling with rumour and secrets, the town is gripped by fear of a serial killer. But the truth could be even darker. _Not everyone who's lost wants to be found..._ Surrounded by people and places she tried to forget, Paula digs into the cases as the truth twists further away. What's the link with two other disappearances from 1985? And why does everything lead back to the town's dark past- including the reasons her own mother went missing years before? _Nothing is what it seems..._ As the shocking truth is revealed, Paula learns that sometimes, it's better not to find what you've lost.
Gillian Flynn - Gone Girl
Marriage can be a real killer. One of the most critically acclaimed suspense writers of our time, New York Times bestseller Gillian Flynn takes that statement to its darkest place in this unputdownable masterpiece about a marriage gone terribly, terribly wrong. The Chicago Tribune proclaimed that her work “draws you in and keeps you reading with the force of a pure but nasty addiction.” Gone Girl’s toxic mix of sharp-edged wit and deliciously chilling prose creates a nerve-fraying thriller that confounds you at every turn. On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy's diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media—as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents—the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter—but is he really a killer? As the cops close in, every couple in town is soon wondering how well they know the one that they love. With his twin sister, Margo, at his side, Nick stands by his innocence. Trouble is, if Nick didn’t do it, where is that beautiful wife? And what was in that silvery gift box hidden in the back of her bedroom closet? With her razor-sharp writing and trademark psychological insight, Gillian Flynn delivers a fast-paced, devilishly dark, and ingeniously plotted thriller that confirms her status as one of the hottest writers around.
Agatha Christie - Ten Little Niggers
Agatha Christie's most famous thriller -- ghoulish, nerve-tearing. A detective story -- with no detective! 10 people are invited to a fabulous mansion on Nigger Island off the coast of Devon. Though they all have something to hide, they arrive hopefully on a glorious summer evening ... But soon a series of extraordinary events take place: the island is suddenly bathed in a most sinister light ... panic grips the visitors, one, by one .. by one, by one ....
Kathy Reichs - Seizure
The second novel in the Virals trilogy from #1 bestselling author and inspiration for the TV series Bones - Kathy Reichs! Ever since Tory Brennan and her friends rescued Cooper, a kidnapped wolf pup with a rare strain of canine parvovirus, they've turned from regular kids into a crime-solving pack! But now the very place that brought them together - the Loggerhead Island Research Institute - is out of funding and will have to shut down. That is, unless the Virals can figure out a way to save it! So when Tory learns of an old Charleston legend about a famous she-pirate, Anne Bonney, whose fortune was never found, she can't believe her luck - buried treasure is exactly what she needs to save the Institute on Loggerhead! Trouble is, she and her friends aren't the only ones looking for it. And this time, the Virals' special powers may not be enough to dig them out of trouble...
S. J. Bolton - Dead Scared
London Police officer Lacey Flint must go deep undercover to stop whoever is preying on Cambridge students in the sequel to S. J. Bolton’s widely acclaimed Now You See Me When a rash of suicides tears through Cambridge University, DI Mark Joesbury recruits DC Lacey Flint to go undercover as a student to investigate the suspicious deaths. Given the circumstances, no one is convinced that the victims acted alone. They believe that someone is preying on lonely and insecure students and either encouraging them to take their own lives or actually luring them to their deaths. So long as Lacey can play the role of a vulnerable young woman, she may be able to stop these deaths, but is it just a role? With a past as fragile as hers is she drawing out the killers or is she getting drawn into a deadly game where she is a perfect victim? Dark and compelling, S. J. Bolton’s _Dead Scared_ —a follow-up to _Now You See Me_ —is another work of brilliant psychological suspense that plumbs the most sinister depths.