Suspenseful and Mysterious

It’s starting to feel like spring outside, but you won’t want to go out while you’re reading these stories. The suspense and mysteries surrounding each novel will keep you on the edge of your seat. Revenge, friendship, lies and murders are all accounted for in this month’s new releases.

1. The Terminal List by Jack Carr

Lieutenant Commander James Reece no longer has any family, friends or ties to the military’s command structure, making him the most-deadly man on the planet.

Reece’s final combat deployment sent his team into a catastrophic ambush. His entire team as well as the aircrews sent to rescue them were wiped out. Reece is haunted by what happened and he returned home to find that not even those dearest to him are safe. He quickly adds all the pieces together and finds out that he is not dealing with a foreign enemy.

Suspenseful, intoxicating and just plain awesome. This book will take you into the world of a man with more than 10 years of warfare experience who will stop at nothing to make those who are responsible for killing his friends and family pay. Step into Reece’s shadow and follow him on his mission of revenge.

“Double the trouble, twice the action, and quadruple the enjoyment. Careful while reading this one, it could leave a mark.”—Steve Berry, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Lost Order

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2. Girls Burn Brighter by Shobha Rao 

Ever since the death of her mother, Poornima has been living her life on autopilot. Looking after her siblings and alcoholic father, Poornima had to become an adult before she was ready. She will be married off to a man she does not love and her life will be over, at least that’s what she thought.

Poornima’s world suddenly changes when she meets Savitha, a girl who is even more impoverished than herself. Savitha’s warmth, passion, energy and friendship reignite the hope that Poornima believed she lost. Sadly a devastating act of cruelty separates the two, and so begins Poornima’s journey to find her best friend.

Her journey will take her to the darkest corners of India’s underworld, a torturous cross-continental venture, and eventually to an apartment complex in Seattle. This is a gripping story about friendship, love, perseverance and self-exploration told from the points of view of both heroines who never lose hope.

Girls Burn Brighter by Shobha Rao blew my heart up. Heart-shards everywhere. I am in awe of the warmth and humanity in this book, even as it explores some incredibly dark places. I’m going to be thinking about Girls Burn Brighter for a while, and you’re going to be hearing a lot about it.” ―Charlie Jane Anders, author of All the Birds in the Sky

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3. The Family Next Door by Sally Hepworth

How well do you know your neighbors is the question Sally Hepworth’s new story is all about.

Looking from the outside Essie’s life is pretty close to perfect. She has a loving husband, a beautiful house in a good neighborhood and a loving mother who lives next door. But Essie’s past holds a terrible secret. In a moment of maternal despair, she once walked away from her newborn, asleep in her carriage in a park. Thankfully Essie came to her senses and everything turned out fine. But Essie’s husband and mother have begun to worry about her again since the birth of her second child.

All that is put on hold when Isabelle moves in next door. Suddenly she is the topic of every conversation in the neighborhood. Why is she single when everyone else is married? Why is she renting a house with four rooms if she lives alone? Where does she work? And why is she so fascinated with Essie? It soon becomes apparent that Isabelle’s choice to move into this neighborhood was no coincidence.

“With jaw-dropping discoveries and realistic consequences, this novel is not to be missed. Perfect for lovers of Big Little Lies.” —Library Journal, starred review

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4. The Gunners by Rebecca Kauffman

“Kauffman’s perceptive, funny, and endearing novel (after Another Place You’ve Never Been) is set against the backdrop of a funeral in snowy Lackawanna, a depressed suburb of Buffalo, N.Y. The seemingly light (but deceptively profound) story follows a once–close-knit group of six friends as they navigate the stresses of adulthood while grappling with long-held secrets from the past. Called ‘The Gunners’—after the name on the mailbox of the abandoned house they hung out in as kids—30-year-old Mikey, Lynn, Alice, Sam, and Jimmy reunite for the first time since high school to pay their respects to their sixth member, Sally, who committed suicide. As with any coming-to-terms-with-past-decisions-and-getting-older exercise, the friends reminisce about old times and share their triumphant successes and embarrassing failures. Despite the well-trod premise, Kauffman’s prose never veers into campy territory. The admissions of her characters provide deep insight into their individual personalities, and also into human vulnerability more broadly. These include Mikey’s fear surrounding his waning eyesight and conflicted sadness about his strained relationship with his father; Sam’s intense shame about a defining moment he had with Sally long ago; and Alice’s outlandish behavior that masks an entrenched inner turmoil. Reminiscent of The Big Chill and St. Elmo’s Fire, this remarkable novel is just as satisfying and provides readers with an entire cast of characters who will feel like old friends upon finishing.”—Publisher Weekly Review

The Gunners explores what it means to have people crawl into your heart and settle in for a lifetime. In this lovely, truthful novel of six people who have been friends since childhood, Rebecca Kauffman strips enduring love of all its usual romantic costumery, and shows us how it actually works.” ―Martha Woodroof, author of Small Blessings

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5. The Broken Girls by James St. Simmons

Through the years Idlewild Hall has been shrouded in mysteries, secrets and murders. It’s a boarding school for “troubled” girls, but many would argue it’s a lot more.

Fiona Sheridan is a journalist who cannot stop revisiting the events surrounding her older sister’s death. She has spent the last 20 years grieving after her sister was found dead lying in a overgrown field near the ruins of Idlewild Hall. Fiona looks further into the case and discovers secrets not only about her sister but about a girl who was murdered in 1950.

Go back and forth in time as the secrets of Idlewild Hall unravel. From 1950 to 2014, the mysteries of this building span generations and there is a possibility they could continue to live on as an anonymous benefactor decides to renovate the building. Who is this anonymous benefactor, how are they connected to the murders, and what really resides within the walls of Idlewild Hall?

“Part hauntingly gothic and part suspenseful crime drama, The Broken Girls is a bona fide page-turner. This story of friendship, revenge and redemption will make readers of women’s fiction rejoice, and the addition of romance and a particularly nasty ghost are intriguing elements that don’t detract from the beautiful writing or the heart of the book.”—Karen White, New York Times bestselling author of The Night the Lights Went Out

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Jennifer Jones

I’m the library’s fiction selector and I’ve been suggesting new books to library and bookmobile customers for over 17 years. I keep up on all the new book reviews, and my favorite question is “What are you reading?” I love to talk about books and to read books. I like to tell library customers, “Try something new. If you don’t like it, at least the price is right!”