‘Pleasantville’ has gripping, believable plot

The compelling “Pleasantville” continues Attica Locke’s insightful look at African-American life in Houston, where politics, race and classism converge in myriad ways. Locke sets her third novel in Pleasantville, a Houston

‘Stolen Ones’ is exciting addition to Laukkanen’s series

Owen Laukkanen’s “The Stolen Ones” concerns human trafficking and follows two Romanian sisters, Irina and Catalina, who have been kidnapped to sell as sex workers. Irina escapes, triggering a sequence

Narrative of ‘Adult Onset’ feels intensely personal

Ann-Marie MacDonald’s latest novel, “Adult Onset,” tracks a week in the life of Mary Rose MacKinnon. A famous author of YA novels, Mary Rose is stalled on starting the last book of a

Bruce DeSilva delivers another outstanding mystery

Edgar Award-winning author Bruce DeSilva delivers another outstanding mystery featuring his Providence, Rhode Island, investigative journalist Liam Mulligan in "A Scourge of Vipers." Mulligan's life and job are in shambles. His

Searching for ‘The Last Unicorn’ in the wildness of Laos

Spoiler alert: There are no unicorns in Laos. But don’t blame nature writer William deBuys for trying to find one. The premise of “The Last Unicorn” is simple: DeBuys tagged along with

‘In Manchuria’ doesn’t live up to its promises

The title of this book was so promising. An American writer who speaks Chinese settled in a rural village in a region that's often overlooked by the parade of books

‘Goldeneye’ explores Ian Fleming’s Jamaican retreat 

James Bond is a British icon, but the fictional spy hero really was born in Jamaica, just as the Caribbean island gained its independence from the waning British empire. The relationship

‘Rule of Four’ author thrills with Vatican mystery

The curator of a groundbreaking exhibit at the Vatican dies mysteriously hours before its premiere. Within hours, his research partner’s family becomes victim to a home invasion. The second novel from

Dave Barry’s new book filled with humor, insight

Live Right and Find Happiness (Although Beer is Much Faster),” Dave Barry’s latest bookof essays, might be thin on page count, but it’s worth every penny when it comes to humor

Lippman deals with parenthood in ‘Hush Hush’

Laura Lippman’s novels about Baltimore private investigator Tess Monaghan have never followed the predictable mode. Instead, the series about this sometimes cranky, perceptive young woman has afforded Lippman a way

‘Our Only World’ reflects on people and the environment

The 10 essays in “Our Only World” convey outrage over environmental and community ruin while also expressing hope that the very species that inflicted such harm is capable of doing

‘Crazy Love You’ is complex and surprising

Lisa Unger takes what appears to be a tale of finding true love and adds in a nightmare element in her latest chiller, “Crazy Love You.” Ian tells his story of

Strong storytelling in ‘Among Thieves’

The brotherhood of criminals gets an incisive, gritty look in this highly entertaining launch of John Clarkson’s new series. “Among Thieves” shows the importance of unconditional loyalty and business acumen for

Matthew Reilly writes action-packed ‘Great Zoo of China’

Matthew Reilly takes elements from Michael Crichton’s classic “Jurassic Park” and gives them a high fantasy spin in his latest action masterpiece, “The Great Zoo of China.” Reptile expert Dr. Cassandra

‘Russian Tattoo’ is worthwhile read

In 2011, memoirist Elena Gorokhova described her coming-of-age in St. Petersburg, then known as Leningrad, and her decision to marry an American to emigrate to the U.S. In her second book,

‘Unquiet Dead’ is outstanding debut by Ausma Zehanat Khan

War atrocities reverberate for generations, affecting those who fought on the battlefield and the civilian victims who were collateral damage. Ausma Zehanat Khan’s gripping first novel tackles questions of identity, culture,

Fishing guide plunges into evildoings in thriller

Vivid scenery and a likable protagonist mark the second book in a series by David Riley Bertsch. In “River of No Return,” Wyoming fishing guide Jake Trent, a former Department of

Tess Gerritsen’s ‘Die Again’ is rock solid

Tess Gerritsen delivers another outstanding thriller in her continuing series featuring Boston police Detective Jane Rizzoli and medical examiner Dr. Maura Isles. The murder of a big game hunter spurs the

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