June’s Best New Thrillers

Thrillers are the perfect books to jolt you back to life after a afternoon nap in the summer sun. Luckily for all of us, there are more than enough of them to go around—like the nine listed here, all arriving on shelves this June.

Camino Island, by John Grisham
Grisham is as reliable a writer as they come; his novels are always twisty, exciting, and intelligent. Camino Island kicks off with an unusual heist: the theft of irreplaceable books from Princeton University’s vault, housed below the Firestone Library. On Camino Island in Florida, Bruce Cable owns a small rare bookstore, and secretly dabbles in black market tomes of the priceless variety. A struggling writer named Mercer Mann is offered a dubious job: infiltrate Cable’s inner circle, get close to his sources, learn his methods, and find out if he’s behind the theft. But as Mercer gets in deeper, she realizes she’s in over her head.

Murder Games, by James Patterson and Howard Roughan
Patterson and Roughan team up for the taut story of a serial killer known as “The Dealer,” thanks to the playing cards he leaves next to the bodies of his victims. But something else is out of place at the scene of one of his brutal crimes: a copy of a book on criminal psychology by Dr. Dylan Reinhart. This piece of evidence prompts desperate NYPD detective Elizabeth Needham to bring Reinhart into the investigation. As New York City panics, Reinhart begins to suspect the playing cards are more than the signature flourish of a sick mind, but clues in a complex puzzle.

Use of Force, by Brad Thor
The 16th Scot Horvath novel begins with the body of a legendary terrorist washing up on an Italian shore after he issued a blood-curdling distress call during a terrible storm in the Mediterranean Sea. Once he’s identified, the CIA is thrown into chaos, as it is believed he might be connected to rumors of a “spectacular” attack against the United States. With no time to spare, but needing plausible deniability, the agency hires Horvath to pursue their scant clues; being unofficial, Horvath can do things even the CIA can’t. But this time, even Horvath may not be able to beat the clock.

Point of Contact, by Mike Maden
Hendley Associates, run by Gerry Hendley, employs the best financial analystsin the world—and provides cover for the Campus, the secret anti-terrorist organization where Jack Ryan, Jr. works. When Hendley is hired by former U.S. Senator Weston Rhodes to analyze the books of a Singaporean company called Dalfan Technologies, Ryan is paired with soft-spoken, awkward accountant Paul Brown to handle the work. Ryan is worried he’s missing out on something bigger, as Brown—unaware of Ryan’s secret position—frets about the Trojan Horse program he’s been tasked with sneaking onto Dalfan’s secure servers. When Brown discovers the job is much more complicated than he thought, he and Ryan have to team up and trust one another in order to survive—and prevent a global disaster.

The Silent Corner, by Dean Koontz
Koontz’s latest offers a twisted inversion of Atlas Shrugged that finds society’s best and brightest committing suicide all over the country. When FBI agent Jane Hawk’s husband becomes the latest to succumb, she refuses to believe the apparent facts of the case, and launches her own investigation into the brilliant man’s death—and quickly finds herself a wanted woman, pursued by unseen, insidious forces. Someone powerful is protecting a terrible secret, and will stop at nothing to keep it from coming to light. But they’ve underestimated Jane—her intelligence, her courage, and her love for her husband.

Indecent Exposure, by Stuart Woods
After 42 novels, it’s no surprise that Stone Barrington’s personal life is a complicated web of former flames and bitter enemies. When Kate Lee wins a second term as president, Barrington’s former love Holly Barker becomes secretary of state, leading the two to renew their relationship—which brings Stone a lot of unwanted publicity, including an interview with reporter Gloria Parsons he quickly comes to regret. Gloria goes on to become involved with New York Governor Benton Blake, who is divorcing his wife and resigning from his post in preparation for a Senate run against the president’s son, Peter—and Peter’s wife happens to be one of Benton’s old lovers. The pump is primed for intrigue and violence, and Stone Barrington fans would expect nothing less.

Robert Ludlum’s The Bourne Initiative, by Eric Van Lustbader
Van Lustbader continues his ace work keeping Robert Ludlum’s most popular character going with the 14th Jason Bourne novel. General Karpov, head of Russia’s FSB, is murdered, but not before launching the most complex cyberattack ever against the United States, an operation capable of stealing the USA’s nuclear launch codes. Now that Karpov is dead, U.S. intelligence wonders who he might have trusted to run the operation in his absence. After all, Karpov only trusted one man: none other than Jason Bourne, who soon finds himself seriously injured and on the run again, forced to turn to the some of the worst people on the planet for help as he desperately tried to get to the bottom of the mystery.

The Force, by Don Winslow
Winslow continues his winning streak with this tightly-plotted, timely story of police corruption. Detective Sergeant Dennis Malone heads up the NYPD’s elite Manhattan North Special Task Force, a unit designed to deal with gangs, drugs, and guns. Such work always requires a certain moral flexibility, but Malone and his crew have turned it into a humming criminal enterprise, regularly stealing drugs and skimming cash. When Malone’s is caught, he’s forced to betray his accomplices if he wants to stay out of jail—but Malone never realized just how far up the chain the corruption reaches. Never mind walking away a free man; now, he doesn’t know how he’s going to make it out alive.

Defectors, by Joseph Kanon
In 1949, CIA agent Frank Weeks is outed as a Soviet spy and flees to Moscow. His brother Simon is forced to resign from the State Department, taking a job with a publishing company. More than a decade later, Simon is running the company, and planning to publish Frank’s memoir. Simon travels to Moscow for a fraught reunion with his brother, ostensibly to help him finish the book, but Frank is still scheming, and quickly involves his unwitting brother in a violent criminal plot. Simon must sift through his complex feelings for the brother who betrayed him and his country if he hopes to return to America alive.


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