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As the Crow Flies

Craig Johnson (Viking)

Sheriff Walt Longmire must prepare for his daughter’s wedding and investigate a suspicious death on Wyoming’s Northern Cheyenne Reservation in Johnson’s eighth installment of this bestselling crime series, which should get a boost from the premier of the TV series Longmire on A&E in June.


The Beautiful Mystery

Louise Penny (Minotaur)

Chief Insp. Armand Gamache investigates the murder of a Quebec monastery’s choir director in Agatha Award–winner Penny’s eighth mystery featuring the French-Canadian policeman. The mystery plot lives up to the title.


Cliff Walk

Bruce DeSilva (Forge)

DeSilva, whose 2010 debut, Rogue Island, won the Edgar for best first novel, stands to garner more award nominations with this sequel, in which Providence newspaper reporter Liam Mulligan looks into a number of crimes, including the murder of a strip-club owner whose body is found on the rocks below Newport’s famed Cliff Walk.



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 Flynn’s compelling tale of a marriage gone horribly wrong.


Into the Darkest Corner

Elizabeth Haynes (Harper)

British author Haynes’s debut, a harrowing psychological thriller, examines its heroine, Catherine Bailey, along two different time lines: the period during which she gets to know a charming man who gradually takes over her life and abuses her before dropping out of it; and the later period when she fears he’ll return to torment her.


Kingdom of Strangers

Zoë Ferraris (Little, Brown)

In Ferraris’s third novel set in contemporary Saudi Arabia, forensic technician Katya Hijazi helps investigate the disappearance of a senior detective’s Filipino mistress while he takes charge of a serial killer case. Both cases serve to highlight Saudi society’s ambivalence about female power.


Blessed Are the Dead

Malla Nunn (Atria/Emily Bestler)

Apartheid-era South Africa comes to vivid life in Nunn’s third mystery featuring Det. Sgt. Emmanuel Cooper, in which the mixed race policeman looks into the murder of a tribal chief’s 17-year-old daughter. Nunn skillfully drops fair play clues on the way to the neat ending.


The Neruda Case

Roberto Ampuero (Riverhead)

In Chilean author Ampuero’s first novel published in English, poet Pablo Neruda (1904–1973), shortly before the coup that overthrew his friend President Allende, persuades a young unemployed Cuban exile to turn detective and go look for a missing man Neruda last saw in Mexico City years earlier. Fans of historicals and poetic prose are in for a treat.


Kill Decision

Daniel Suarez (Dutton)

Michael Crichton fans will welcome this timely political thriller in which someone inflames anti-American sentiment in the Arab world by using an unmanned Predator drone with U.S. markings to destroy a mosque in Iraq during prayers. Evocative prose and provocative science lift this one above the pack.


Creole Belle

James Lee Burke (Simon & Schuster)

In the 19th entry in what may be the most consistently satisfying series in 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. Years from now, when many of our popular writers have faded from memory, new generations will be reading Burke.


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