Raymond Chandler - The Big Sleep
Los Angeles PI Philip Marlowe is working for the Sternwood family. Old man Sternwood, crippled and wheelchair-bound, is being given the squeeze by a blackmailer and he wants Marlowe to make the problem go away. But with Sternwood's two wild, devil-may-care daughters prowling LA's seedy backstreets, Marlowe's got his work cut out and that's before he stumbles over the first corpse.
Lawrence Block - The Burglar Who Counted the Spoons
Ever since The Burglar on the Prowl climbed the bestseller lists in 2004, fans have been clamoring for a new book featuring the lighthearted and lightfingered Bernie Rhodenbarr. Now everybody's favorite burglar returns in an eleventh adventure that finds him and his lesbian sidekick Carolyn Kaiser breaking into houses, apartments, and even a museum, in a madcap adventure replete with American Colonial silver, an F. Scott Fitzgerald manuscript, a priceless portrait, and a remarkable array of buttons. And, wouldn't you know it, there's a dead body, all stretched out on a Trent Barling carpet...
Lawrence Block - The Burglar Who Studied Spinoza
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.
James Patterson - Mark Sullivan - Private Berlin
_Private Berlin_ has the extraordinary pace and international sophistication that has powered _The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo_ and Patterson's #1 bestseller _The Postcard Killers_. IN EUROPE'S MOST DANGEROUS CITY Chris Schneider is a superstar agent at Private Berlin, Germany headquarters for the world's most powerful investigation firm. He keeps his methods secret as he tackles Private's most high-profile cases-and when Chris suddenly disappears, he becomes Private Berlin's most dangerous investigation yet. AN INVESTIGATOR IS SEARCHING Mattie Engel is another top agent at Private Berlin, gorgeous and ruthlessly determined-and she's also Chris's ex. Mattie throws herself headfirst into finding Chris, following leads to the three people Chris was investigating when he vanished: a billionaire suspected of cheating on his wife, a soccer star accused of throwing games, and a nightclub owner with ties to the Russian mob. Any one of them would surely want Chris gone-and one of them is evil enough to want him dead. AND SHE'S AFTER MORE THAN THE TRUTH Mattie's chase takes her into Berlin's most guarded, hidden, and treacherous places, revealing secrets from Chris's past that she'd never dreamed of in the time they were lovers. On the brink of a terrifying discovery, Mattie holds on to her belief in Chris-in the face of a horror that could force all of Europe to the edge of destruction and chaos. James Patterson has taken the European thriller to a masterful new level with _Private Berlin_, an adrenaline-charged, spectacularly violent and sexy novel with unforgettable characters of dark and complex depths. _Private Berlin_ proves why Patterson is truly the world's #1 bestselling author.
Charles Bukowski - Pulp
This is Charles Bukowski's brilliant, fantastical pastiche of a detective story. Packed with wit, invention and Bukowski's trademark lowlife adventures, it is the final novel of one of the most enjoyable and influential cult writers of the last century. Nicky Belane, private detective and career alcoholic, is a troubled man. He is plagued not just by broads, booze, lack of cash and a raging ego, but also by the surreal jobs he's been hired to do. Not only has been hired to track down French classical author Celine - who's meant to be dead - but he's also supposed to find the elusive Red Sparrow - which may or may not be real.
Sara Shepard - Flawless
The #1 New York Times bestselling series that inspired the hit ABC Family TV show Pretty Little Liars and the upcoming HBO spin-off series Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin! Four pretty little liars have been very bad girls. Ever since the body of their former best friend was found, Aria, Hanna, Emily, and Spencer have been trying to figure out who could have killed her. But they’ve also been keeping some pretty big secrets…and now the mysterious “A” is threatening to reveal everything, including something so scandalous that the truth could ruin them forever. Perfect for fans of One of Us is Lying, The Cousins, and A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder, this paperback repackage of the second book in Sara Shepard’s #1 New York Times bestselling Pretty Little Liars series—featuring a brand-new cover—brings new twists to the thrilling and magnetically compelling world of Pretty Little Liars, where everyone’s got something to hide, and no secret stays buried for long.
James Rollins - Ice Hunt
When an undersea vessel discovers an abandoned site buried deep in the polar ice cap, Shockwaves run through the heart of two powerful nations. The brainchild of the finest Soviet minds, Ice Station Grendel was designed to be inaccessible and virtually invisible. But now it has been disturbed, and something is spotted lurking inside -something which defies nature.
Darynda Jones - First Grave on the Right
A smashing, award-winning debut novel that introduces Charley Davidson: part-time private investigator and full-time Grim Reaper. Charley sees dead people. That’s right, she sees dead people. And it’s her job to convince them to go into the light.” But when these very dead people have died under less than ideal circumstances (i.e. murder), sometimes they want Charley to bring the bad guys to justice. Complicating matters are the intensely hot dreams she’s been having about an Entity who has been following her all her life...and it turns out he might not be dead after all. In fact, he might be something else entirely. This is a thrilling debut novel from an exciting newcomer to the world of paranormal romantic suspense.
John Sandford - Mortal Prey
Lucas Davenport's boss is about to lose her job as chief of police, his fiancée is distracted with wedding plans, and his house-remodeling project is at a standstill. So when the FBI and DEA draft the Minneapolis cop to head off hit woman Clara Rinker's bloody murder spree, he's glad to oblige. The lady killer and the killer lady have tangled before in Sandford's Prey series, and their personal history seasons this fast-paced story of mayhem, murder, and revenge. After Rinker barely survives an assassination attempt that destroys her unborn baby and kills her lover, the son of a Mexican drug lord, she sets out to destroy the mobsters who ordered the hit, a journey that brings her into Davenport's sights again and also puts him back in action alongside a woman agent with whom he was once involved. But it's the grudging respect and even affection Sandford hints at between Rinker and Lucas that takes this crisp, confident thriller beyond the limitations of the genre and makes the characters flesh-and-blood human beings. A standout in a terrific series!
John Sandford - Broken Prey
Sandford sends series hero Lucas Davenport's family off to London to ensure that domestic concerns never slow the action in this sexy, bloody thriller. Davenport, a Minnesota State Bureau of Criminal Apprehension investigator, had lately been doing political fix-it jobs for the governor, but this time he's got a psychopathic serial killer on his hands. ("All major metro areas had them, sometimes two and three at a time. The public had the impression that they were rare. They weren't.") The first victim, a young woman, was "scourged" with a wire whip; number two, a young man, had his penis cut off. Evidence first points to recently released sex offender Charlie Pope. Though Charlie is pretty dumb and the killer is extremely smart, it takes Davenport and his series partner, Detective Sloan, a while to realize they're chasing the wrong guy. Sandford introduces some lighter moments, the most entertaining about Davenport's new iPod and his quest to compile a list of the 100 best rock songs ever recorded, which every cop on the force gives him suggestions for. These moments allow readers to catch their breath amid the otherwise nonstop tension as the killer taunts the authorities while snaring more victims, and the cops race around the countryside always just a few minutes too late. For those who thought Davenport (and Sandford) were slowing down and showing signs of age and prosperity, this superlative entry will dispel all such notions. This is tough, unstoppable, white-knuckle fiction.
John Sandford - Invisible Prey
Bestseller Sandford opts for a contemplative procedural rather than a high-octane nail-biter for his 17th novel to feature Minneapolis detective Lucas Davenport (after 2005's Broken Prey). The brave and intelligent Davenport, one of contemporary crime fiction's more congenial sleuths, is working a politically sensitive case—state senator Burt Kline is on the edge of being arrested for having sex with a minor—when he's called in to investigate the beating death of wealthy widow Constance Bucher and her maid. Bucher lived in a mansion stuffed with antiques, though it's unclear if robbery was the motive for the murders. Several run-of-the-mill suspects are dealt with before the reader learns the identity of the two killers, who continue to murder a string of folks all variously connected to the Bucher slaying. Eventually, the Bucher and Kline cases come together in an unexpected way. Interesting and unusual supporting characters, good and bad guys alike, enhance an intriguing puzzle.
John Sandford - Storm Prey
It was an inside job, and it should have been easy. Rob the pharmacy at Minneapolis’ largest hospital: in, out, wait till things cool down, and then sell the drugs for a half million or so. But the old man had to be a hero. Who knew he’d be on blood thinners and die after he was kicked? A robbery turned murder means Lucas Davenport and his Bureau of Criminal Apprehension team are called in to assist the investigation. There’s another element to the case for Davenport: his wife, Weather, a surgeon at the hospital, may be able to identify one of the killers. The case starts to escalate. An attempt is made on Weather’s life. The bodies of two motorcycle gang members are found in a rural area. Davenport guesses the gang is imploding from the pressure and murdering its members. Weather, under 24-hour guard, is part of a surgical team working to separate conjoined twins in a procedure that’s captured the attention of the world’s media. Meanwhile, Davenport and his team keep finding bodies of likely robbers but can’t seem to isolate either the brains behind the theft or the hospital insider who pointed them at the pharmacy. The twenty-second Prey novel includes most of the elements readers expect: sharp plot, snappy dialogue, and believable action, but the background playfulness and gallows humor that usually fill in the gaps are in short supply. But hey, that’s nitpicking. On balance, this is another fine entry in a wildly popular series.
John Sandford - Bad Blood
When 19-year-old Bob Tripp hits farmer Jacob Flood in the head with a T-ball bat at the outset of Sandford's exciting fourth thriller to feature Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension agent Virgil Flowers (after Rough Country), Tripp's subsequent attempt to make murder look like an accident fails. The morning after Tripp's arrest, he's found hanging in his cell. Warren County sheriff Lee Coakley seeks Flowers's help to investigate what role, if any, deputy Jim Crocker, the officer on duty at the jail at the time, played in Tripp's death. A link to the earlier murder of a young woman leads Flowers and Coakley to members of a small church with strange ways. As the pair become aware of the magnitude of the unspeakable crimes (rape, child abuse, incest) behind the deaths, they search desperately for a lever to pry open what turns out to be Flowers's biggest, if perhaps most unlikely, case to date.
James Ellroy - L. A. Confidential
L.A. Confidential is epic "noir", a crime novel of astonishing detail and scope written by the bestselling author of The Black Dahlia. A horrific mass murder invades the lives of victims and victimizers on both sides of the law. And three lawmen are caught in a deadly spiral, a nightmare that tests loyalty and courage, and offers no mercy, grants no survivors.
Dan Brown - The Lost Symbol
The most anticipated publication of the decade, The Lost Symbol is the stunning new thriller featuring Robert Langdon. Six years in the writing, it is Dan Brown's extraordinary sequel to his internationally bestselling Angels & Demons and The Da Vinci Code. Nothing is ever what it first appears in a Dan Brown novel. Set over a breathtaking 12 hour time span, the book's narrative takes the reader on an exhilarating journey through a masterful and unexpected landscape as Professor of Symbology, Robert Langdon, is once again called into action.
Raymond Chandler - The Lady in the Lake
Derace Kingsley's wife ran away to Mexico to get a quickie divorce and marry a Casanova-wannabe named Chris Lavery. Or so the note she left her husband insisted. Trouble is, when Philip Marlowe asks Lavery about it he denies everything and sends the private investigator packing with a flea lodged firmly in his ear. But when Marlowe next encounters Lavery, he's denying nothing - on account of the two bullet holes in his heart. Now Marlowe's on the trail of a killer, who leads him out of smoggy LA all the way to a murky mountain lake
Patricia Cornwell - Trace
Since Postmortem garnered critical acclaim and a record-breaking five awards for a first crime novel, the Scarpetta novels have often been imitated, but never bettered. Blow Fly saw the world famous medical examiner forced out of Virginia, the media harassing her at every turn, and the serial killer, Chandonne, determined to break the woman who put him behind bars. It also brought Benton Wesley back into her life, her lover and soulmate whose supposed death had left her bereft and alone. Now she is revitalised and determined to regain control of her professional life. She is called back to Virginia where she had been chief medical examiner to work on the investigation into the dark, lonely death of a 14-year- old girl. Scarpetta follows a trail too feint for the human eye to see but which eventually leads to a truth that may be more than she can bear.
James Lee Burke - In the Electric Mist with Confederate Dead
A movie crew has come to New Iberia, Louisiana, to film a Civil War epic, and star Elrod Sykes just can't seem to keep his lavender Cadillac on the road. Under threat of a drunk driving charge, he offers Detective Dave Robicheaux information in exchange for leniency: he leads him to the skeletal remains of a man whose murder Robicheaux witnessed in the summer of 1957. When the FBI arrives in the person of agent Rosie Gomez, Robicheaux must form a new partnership that challenges how he views himself and his local community. But it is only when Robicheaux makes the acquaintance of the legendary Confederate cavalry officer General John Bell Hood in the mist of the bayou that he begins to understand that 'war is never over', and that the battle rages on ...
James Lee Burke - A Stained White Radiance
Cajun police detective Dave Robicheaux knows the Sonnier family of New Iberia--their connections to the CIA, the mob, and to a former Klansman now running for state office. And he knows their past, as dark and murky as a night on the Louisiana bayou. An assassination attempt and the death of a cop draw Robicheaux into the Sonniers' dangerous web of madness, murder and incest. But Robicheaux has devils of his own. And they've come out of hiding to destroy the tormented investigator--and the two people he holds most dear.
James Lee Burke - A Morning for Flamingos
The fourth Dave Robicheaux detective novel, featuring a volatile mix of Mafia drug-running and Cajun voodoo magic. Obsessed with revenge when his partner is killed by an escaping death-row prisoner, Robicheaux goes under cover into the sleepy, torrid depths of the New Orleans criminal world.