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Exit Plan

Larry Bond (Forge)

In this ripped from the headlines tale of SEAL adventures and a plot to trick the Israelis and Americans into launching a first strike against Iran, Bond's refusal to demonize the Iranian characters gives them a solid, real-life feel that cranks up both the tension and the believability.

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Creole Belle

James Lee Burke (Simon & Schuster)

In the 19th entry in what may be the most consistently satisfying series in contemporary American crime fiction, New Iberia, La., sheriff Dave Robicheaux and his pal Clete Purcel face off against a number of formidable foes, including a possible Nazi war criminal.

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Kill You Twice

Chelsea Cain (Minotaur)

Incarcerated serial killer Gretchen Lowell says she has some useful tips for Det. Archie Sheridan in the case of two Portland, Ore., murders that appear to be the work of another serial killer. But can Archie take Gretchen at her word? Four previous books featuring these two damaged souls suggest not.

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Black Box

Michael Connelly (Little, Brown)

The 18th Harry Bosch novel opens in 1992, as L.A. residents outraged by the acquittal of the cops who beat up Rodney King go on a rampage. Twenty years later, the LAPD detective gets a second chance to solve the case of a Danish photojournalist shot dead during the riots.

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The Gods of Gotham

Lyndsay Faye (Putnam/Amy Einhorn)

Set in 1845, this first in a new series introduces Timothy Wilde, a former bartender and member of New York City's newly formed police force, whose investigation into the murder of a 12-year-old Irish boy leads him deep into the heart of human darkness.

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Gone Girl

Gillian Flynn (Crown)

When Amy Elliot, on the surface a privileged Gotham golden girl, disappears on her fifth wedding anniversary, her husband, Nick Dunne, becomes the prime suspect in her presumed murder. Both Amy and Nick prove to be far from blameless in this compelling story of a marriage gone horribly wrong.

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Dead Anyway

Chris Knopf (Permanent)

In this inventive tale of revenge, market researcher Arthur Cathcart manages to have himself declared dead in his quest to dis-cover the who and the why behind a hit at his Stamford, Conn., home that left his wife dead and him in a coma for months.

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Live by Night

Dennis Lehane (Morrow)

Set in Prohibition-era Boston, Florida, and Cuba, this epic crime novel charts the rise of Irish-American Joe Coughlin, from petty crook to creator of a huge empire in the illegal rum trade. Naturally, this idyllic existence can't last forever.

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Afterwards

Rosamund Lupton (Crown)

A fire at a suburban London school during sports day leaves Grace Covey and her 17-year-old daughter, Jenny, a teaching as-sistant, gravely injured. Even worse, Grace's son, Adam, a student at the school, is accused of setting the blaze in this intricate psychological thriller.

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Phantom

Jo Nesbø (Knopf)

Former police officer Harry Hole returns to Oslo from Hong Kong to take on his most personal case yet in his seventh outing to be published in the U.S.—trying to help his estranged 18-year-old son, who has fallen in with a group of drug users and al-legedly shot dead another teenager.

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Mandarin Gate

Eliot Pattison (Minotaur)

The efforts of investigator Shan Tao Yun, now an official ditch inspector exiled to Tibet, to save an outlaw monk he has be-friended lands him in the middle of a murder inquiry in Pattison's seventh novel to dramatize the oppression suffered by the Tibetan people under Communist Chinese rule.

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Agent 6

Tom Rob Smith (Grand Central)

The final volume of Smith's trilogy set in the Soviet Union takes former KGB agent Leo Demidov from Moscow to Manhat-tan, where tragedy strikes a Russian delegation intended to ease cold war tensions in 1965. Smith shows the toll a police state can take on those caught in its meshes.

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