Our May 2023 list of best crime, mystery and thriller books includes highly-anticipated titles such as Killing Moon, the new installment in Harry Hole series by Scandinavian author Jo Nesbo, Central Park West by former FBI director James Comey, as well as fan-favorite titles such as Fixit: An IQ Novel by Joe Ide and Tom Clancy Flash Point by Don Bentley.
Note: Mystery Tribune’s Reading Lists include the best crime and thriller books of each month as well as our picks for different sub-genres: Check them out here.
Fixit: An IQ Novel by Joe Ide (May 9)
Isaiah Quintabe’s first love, Grace, has been kidnapped by his sworn enemy, the professional hitman Skip Hanson. Skip is savage and psychotic, determined to punish Isaiah for sending him to prison and destroying his life. Isaiah and his sometimes partner, ex-hustler Juanell Dodson, together again, must track scant clues through L.A.’s perilous landscape as Grace’s predicament grows more uncertain.
A complication arises in the form of Winnie Hando, a homicide detective with something to prove. Stubborn and effective, Winnie sees Isaiah’s efforts as an obstruction to the investigation and a possible embarrassment: an unlicensed PI can’t be seen doing the department’s job better than the department.
Winnie tries to stop Isaiah while pursuing the case herself, each hindering the other’s progress. As the desperate hunt winds on, Isaiah fears that even if he can bring Grace home alive, things between them will never be the same. This latest series installment is an explosive collision of larger-than-life characters, shotguns, vicious dogs, stampeding horses, and Ide’s signature energy, grit, and profundity.
Central Park West by James Comey (May 30)
In the thrilling first crime novel from the former director of the FBI, a murder investigation reveals deadly connections between high-ranking politicians and the mafia.
The gripping crime fiction debut from former FBI director James Comey takes readers deep inside the world of lawyers and investigators working to solve a murder while navigating the treacherous currents of modern politics and the mob.
When a years-long case against a powerful mobster finally cracks and an unimpeachable witness takes the stand, federal prosecutor Nora Carleton is looking forward to putting the defendant away for good. The mobster, though, has other plans. As the witness’s testimony concludes, a note is passed to the prosecution offering up information into the assassination of a disgraced former New York governor, murdered in his penthouse apartment just days before. It’s enough to blow the case wide open, and to send Nora into a high-stakes investigation of conspiracy, corruption, and danger.
Drawing from the author’s decades in federal law enforcement, including his years in Manhattan as a mob prosecutor and later the chief federal prosecutor, Central Park West is a fast-paced legal thriller with an intriguing plot enriched by real-life details and experiences. That unique perspective gives the novel much of its allure, but it’s the unforgettable characters, shocking twists, and courtroom scenes as authentic as they are dramatic that will leave readers looking forward to more from this bold new talent in the genre.
Tom Clancy Flash Point by Don Bentley (May 23)
If there’s one thing Jack Ryan, Jr’s father taught him, it’s that freedom isn’t free, but nothing can prepare Jack for the price he must pay in the latest electrifying entry in the #1 New York Times bestselling series.
Jack Ryan Jr. is in a world of trouble. When a benign surveillance operation takes a deadly turn, Jack finds himself locked in a struggle with an unseen enemy bent on destroying the Campus. The chase leads Jack to the South China Sea where a midair collision between aircraft from rival nations threatens to serve as a flash point for the entire region. As Jack frantically tries to put the pieces of the conspiracy together, the Campus is hit with a crippling attack. When the dust settles, Jack is one of the few operators still standing and the Campus’s de facto leader. But the fight is just beginning.
As tensions escalate, Jack’s mysterious adversary executes a brilliant campaign to paralyze the American government even as China inches closer to invading Taiwan. With the odds stacked against him and no help in sight, Jack and his shattered team must stop the world’s two remaining super powers from stumbling into war even as the noose around the Campus grows ever tighter. Every operation has a cost. This time the bill might just be too much to pay.
Killing Moon – A Harry Hole Novel (13) by Jo Nesbo (May 29)
THE HUNT IS ON AND THE POLICE ARE RUNNING OUT OF TIME. Two young women are missing, their only connection a party they both attended, hosted by a notorious real-estate magnate. When one of the women is found murdered, the police discover an unusual signature left by the killer, giving them reason to suspect he will strike again.
THEY’RE FACING A KILLER UNLIKE ANY OTHER. And exposing him calls for a detective like no other. But the legendary Harry Hole is gone—fired from the force, drinking himself to oblivion in Los Angeles. It seems that nothing can entice him back to Oslo. Until the woman who saved Harry’s life is put in grave danger, and he has no choice but to return to the city that haunts him and track down the murderer.
CATCHING HIM WILL PUSH HARRY TO THE LIMIT. He’ll need to bring together a misfit team of former operatives to accomplish what he can’t do alone: stop an unstoppable killer. But as the evidence mounts, it becomes clear that there is more to this case than meets the eye.
The Night in Question by Kathleen Glasgow; Liz Lawson (May 30)
Last October, Alice Ogilvie’s ex-best friend, Brooke Donovan, was killed—and if it weren’t for Alice’s unlikely alliance with her tutor, Iris Adams, and her library of the complete works of Agatha Christie, the wrong person would almost certainly be sitting in prison for the crime. The Castle Cove police aren’t exactly great at solving crimes. In fact, they’re notorious for not solving crimes.
Which is why, on the night of Castle Cove High’s annual Sadie Hawkins dance, Alice takes the opportunity to explore Levy Castle—the site of one of Castle Cove’s most infamous deaths. Mona Moody—the classic film star—died there almost a century ago, and Alice is pretty sure the police got that investigation wrong, too. But before she can even think about digging deeper, she walks right into the scene of a new crime. Rebecca Kennedy, on the ground in a pool of blood. And standing over Kennedy? Another one of Alice’s ex-friends—Helen Park.
The Castle Cove Police Department thinks it’s an open-and-shut case, but Alice and Iris are sure it can’t be that simple. Park isn’t a murderer—and the girls know all too well that in life, and in mysteries, things are rarely what they appear to be. To understand the present, sometimes you need to look to the past.
Castle Cove is full of secrets, and Alice and Iris are about to uncover one of its biggest—and most dangerous—secrets of all.
Other titles in our list of best crime, mystery and thriller books of May 2023 include the following:
|Top||The Devil You Know: A Thriller (4) (A Hayley Chill Thriller)||Hauty, Chris||Buy Now|
|Top||Rebirth of the Gangster Act 4: Inheritance||Standal, Cj||Buy Now|
|Top||Poveglia Island||Godfrey, Craig A.||Buy Now|
|Top||Something Bad Wrong: A Thriller (Jess Keeler Thrillers Book 1)||Pruitt, Eryk||Buy Now|
|Top||The Cargo From Neira (A Gabriel Taverner Mystery Book 5)||Clare, Alys||Buy Now|
|Top||Sepulchre Street (Rachel Savernake)||Edwards, Martin||Buy Now|
|Top||The Truth About the Spy (The S.P.Y. Girl Academy Book 1)||Catherine, Julie||Buy Now|
|Top||Killing Me||Gagnon, Michelle||Buy Now|
|Top||SHANNON’S GAMBLE (Nick Shannon Thrillers Book 7)||BENNETT, PAUL||Buy Now|
|Top||Murder by the Seaside||Baldwin, Jackie||Buy Now|
|Top||The Chateau: A Novel||Goldis, Jaclyn||Buy Now|
|Top||The Moonshine Messiah: A Mountaineer Mystery||Johnson, Russell W.||Buy Now|