Mike Wilson, at Murder By The Book since 2023
Mike has over two decades in corporate HR and is currently a consultant. He has been an avid reader of mysteries and thrillers for much longer.
Some of his favorite authors include: Stephen Mack Jones, David Baldacci, Michael Connelly, Vince Flynn, Steve Cavanagh, SA Cosby, Jeffery Deaver, Joe Ide, Meg Gardiner, Dennis Lehane, Gregg Hurwitz, and Carl Hiaasen.
In Lone Wolf we see the most evolved Orphan X yet and this evolution, to his feelings and to the way he views the world and people in it, causes him to stray from his usual behaviors in ways you could not foresee in the beginning. This is the foundation of another phenomenal action thriller where X ends up matching wits with a mysterious assassin to protect a girl who’s lost her father to this assassin’s bullets. I couldn’t put it down, fastest read this year.
This book is unique in some of the best of ways. The author takes the serial killer novel and turns it on its head. He gives you the suspenseful thriller you would expect while giving you hilariously and sometimes tragically flawed characters, dark humor, and plot twists that keep you on your toes. You may think you know what’s going to happen, but you’re probably wrong. Part thriller, touch of detective, and a good amount of dark humor is a great combo here. This was a fast and fun read and a great start to my reading list for the year. Mike
This fiction debut from Plantinga, still an active police officer, is a non-stop thriller I hated to put down. I would have read it in one sitting if I didn’t have to take my turns driving home from the holidays. Ex-cop Kurt Argento is arrested on trumped up charges by a corrupt sheriff with a grudge and thrown into a max security prison. Meanwhile, the governors daughter is taking a tour of the same facility when the prison experiences massive electronic security malfunctions, letting inmates run free and wild within the facility. To call for help and get free they must get to the roof, but each of the prison’s six floors is more dangerous than the previous one. Shocking at times in its unfiltered authenticity this one gives thrills and surprises as the danger and difficulty of the mission increase. This is a must read for thriller fans.
Fantastic entry in the Peter Nash series that goes into new territory, digging into the past life of loyal friend Lewis. This is an exceptional fast action-filled affair that shows the maturation, growth, and depth of Peter, Lewis, and their relationships with each other and their families. But yes, it kicks serious ass and is a great entry point to the series, if you are new to Petrie.
Great, entertaining heist novel and lightning fast read! Think Oceans 11 with wildfires! This one moves extremely quickly and Goldberg deftly tells the story as he shifts between the past and present as well as between the con men, who are staging the heist of the decade during a speeding wildfire that they set, and the investigators trying to figure everything out. One of my tops of the year, I wouldn’t be surprised if I saw this on the big screen one day.
This is an excellent and tense debut bridging international law enforcement and espionage. Urszenyi has created a compelling character in former sniper turned special agent Alexandra Martel. I'm looking forward to the sequel.
This is the excellent debut of Ben Koenig, a special division US Marshall who has disappeared (for reasons unknown at first) for 6 years. He’s kept himself safe until he sees his name and picture on the tv screen. He’s been put on the most wanted list by his own former agency, but doesn’t know why. His old boss has done it to try to draw him out to ask for a personal favor: find those responsible for the taking of his daughter, find out why, and deliver justice. This is a fresh new take on the uniquely skilled highly trained military/law enforcement badass. This was well-written with fantastic character development and background. The twist ending sets up the probable sequel and hints at future topics for the author. I really enjoyed this one and look forward to the sequel. For fans of Lee Child, Petrie, Carr.
Jones and his creation August Snow never disappoint. The fourth in the Snow series is another one where you lose time as you fly through the pages. The only disappointment I have is knowing I have a long wait until the fifth novel.
Classic Connelly! This is another top notch legal thriller featuring the Lincoln lawyer Mickey Haller and long-time feature character, retired LAPD homicide detective Harry Bosch. Bosch is now working as an investigator for Haller, trying to prove the innocence of a woman convicted of killing her husband. She originally pleaded no contest but claims she was coerced, forced to negotiate a plea even though innocent. Full of plot twists and shrewd legal maneuvers, this is a must read from the master of police procedurals and legal thrillers. This is easily one of Connelly's best.
This is an entertaining mystery in which a young girl witnesses an elaborate art heist go wrong, resulting in her uncle being killed and her being on the run. It has smart and quirky characters-one a savvy detective with no masters and the other, a former triad assassin turned self-appointed guardian of Chinatown- that complement each other as well as elements of noir that bring San Francisco and its underbelly to life. This was my first Maleeny book and I've seen enough that I'm going back to read the others. I liken this to a mystery with pieces of Connelly and a dash of Hiaasen. Worth a look!
Byrne has created the most unique and fun main character in the thriller genre I’ve seen in many years. Dez is subtly hilarious, smart, effective, and as dangerous as he needs to be as he approaches every problem with alacrity and calm. I have to see what he does next. Extremely fun read. - Mike
Imagine being in a place you can’t get out of, where no help is coming, and you happen to be there with a serial killer you’ve admitted to setting free as the lone juror voting not guilty. Maria is trying to put her life back together after the trial and relax with her fiancé and two kids when bodies start showing up. She suspects the killer she set free may be on the cruise ship in the middle of the Atlantic. This one is a scary, fast-paced thriller that I flew through. Perfect for fans of Michallon, serial killer novels or just plots a little on the disturbing and suspenseful side. - Mike
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A disgraced former CIA operative must go back in the field with only his ex-wife as his handler in this electrifying thriller from a former intelligence officer.
A must read new author! Jones makes you feel and taste Detroit, good and bad, while delivering action with complicated main character August Snow. - Mike
One of my top 3 thrillers of all time! 'Nuff said! - Mike
Black Box is the CIA’s elite special operations group. Ultra-skilled and multi-talented, these agents operate as chameleons and ghosts performing special operations and tasks all over the world. This time, they are investigating “Hostage, Inc.,”a group that uses kidnapping of important figures to manipulate stock prices for huge financial gain. While looking into this, they discover a much more dangerous international plot. Weaving the Nigerian childhood past of main character Kali Kent, with his leadership in his Black Box team in the present, this is an exciting and lightning fast read and is a welcome introduction of Remi Adeline as a thriller writer. Great for fans of the espionage/thriller offerings of Carr, Flynn, and Bentley. - Mike