5 New Books to Read this Week: September 25, 2018

Every Wednesday, we here at Criminal Element will put together a list of Staff Picks of the books that published the day before—sharing the ones that we are looking forward to reading the most!

This week, Vince Flynn’s Mitch Rapp series continues with a new installment from Kyle Mills and Joanne Fluke adds a holiday-themed prequel story to her long-running Hannah Swensen series! See what else we’re reading:

Vince Flynn Red War by Kyle Mills

When Russian president Maxim Krupin discovers that he has inoperable brain cancer, he’s determined to cling to power. His first task is to kill or imprison any of his countrymen who can threaten him. Soon, though, his illness becomes serious enough to require a more dramatic diversion—war with the West.

Upon learning of Krupin’s condition, CIA director Irene Kennedy understands that the US is facing an opponent who has nothing to lose. The only way to avoid a confrontation that could leave millions dead is to send Mitch Rapp to Russia under impossibly dangerous orders. With the Kremlin’s entire security apparatus hunting him, he must find and kill a man many have deemed the most powerful in the world.

Success means averting a war that could consume all of Europe. But if his mission is discovered, Rapp will plunge Russia and America into a conflict that neither will survive.





Christmas Cake Murder by Joanne Fluke

It’s Christmas many years ago, and topping young Hannah Swensen’s wish list is becoming the go-to baker in Lake Eden, Minnesota. But as Hannah finds out, revisiting holiday memories can be murder…

With her dream of opening The Cookie Jar taking shape, Hannah’s life matches the hectic December hustle and bustle in Lake Eden—especially when she agrees to help recreate a spectacular Christmas Ball from the past in honor of Essie Granger, an elderly local in hospice care. But instead of poring over decadent dessert recipes for the merry festivities, she instantly becomes enthralled by Essie’s old notebooks and the tale of a woman escaping danger on the streets of New York. Hannah’s surprised by Essie’s secret talent for penning crime fiction. She’s even more surprised when the story turns real. As Hannah prepares to run a bakery and move out of her mother’s house, it’ll be a true miracle if she can prevent another Yuletide disaster by solving a mystery as dense as a Christmas fruitcake…

Read an excerpt from Christmas Cake Murder!



Bury the Lead by Archer Mayor

When the body of a young woman is found near a trail at a popular ski mountain, the case falls to Joe Gunther and his team at the Vermont Bureau of Investigation (VBI). They quickly have a suspect, Mick Durocher, and a confession, but not everyone on the team is convinced. Despite Mick’s ready admission, investigators quickly sense there might be more going on than is immediately apparent.

At the same time, a large local business is being targeted with escalating acts of vandalism―a warehouse fire, a vandalized truck, a massive cooling system destroyed―resulting in loss of life. And either by coincidence, or not, Mick Durocher, the self-confessed murderer, was once employed by this very company.

These two puzzling cases―now possibly connected―are further complicated by the sidelining of a key member of VBI, Willy Kunkle, who undergoes surgery at a hospital that appears to be having an unlikely―and suspiciously timed―outbreak of Ebola.

Joe and his team pursue these cases, uncovering motives that might link them, while proving that trust betrayed can be a toxic virus, turning love into murderous loathing. Indeed, behind the mayhem and murder, Joe must uncover a tragic history before another victim dies.

Read an excerpt from Bury the Lead, then check out Ray Palen’s review!



Haunted Hayride with Murder by Auralee Wallace

Trick-or-treating just got a whole lot deadlier.

Erica Bloom is loving everything about autumn this year in Otter Lake, New Hampshire: changing leaves, apple cider, cozy sweaters … and the warm and fuzzy relationship that’s heating up between her and Sheriff Grady Forrester. But when some local teens out to find some Halloween thrills come across a boot with a dead man’s foot bones still inside it, a chilling new reality comes into play.

Everyone in Otter Lake knows about the age-old witch who haunts the apple orchard bordering the White Mountains. So when the bones turn out to belong to a long-gone local with a scandalous connection to the orchard, stories of the spooky figure roaming the forests at night once again rise up from the past.

Now it’s up to Erica and the rest of the Otter Lake Security team to expose the identity of the killer. Will they be able to lay this ghost to rest … or will this witch hunt be their last?

Read an excerpt from Haunted Hayride with Murder!

   


Treacherous Is the Night by Anna Lee Huber

It’s not that Verity Kent doesn’t sympathize with those eager to make contact with lost loved ones. After all, she once believed herself a war widow. But now that she’s discovered Sidney is very much alive, Verity is having enough trouble connecting with her estranged husband, never mind the dead. Still, at a friend’s behest, Verity attends a séance, where she encounters the man who still looms between her and Sidney—and a medium who channels a woman Verity once worked with in the Secret Service. Refusing to believe her former fellow spy is dead, Verity is determined to uncover the source of the spiritualist’s top secret revelation.

Then the medium is murdered—and Verity’s investigation is suddenly thwarted. Even Secret Service agents she once trusted turn their backs on her. Undaunted, Verity heads to war-torn Belgium, with Sidney by her side. But as they draw ever closer to the danger, Verity wonders if she’s about to learn the true meaning of till death do us part…

Read Angie Barry’s review of Treacherous Is the Night!

       

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