The list of best crime, mystery, and thriller books of July 2019 includes irresistible thrillers from authors such as Adrian McKinty and Ted Bell to cozy mysteries like The Pawful Truth by Miranda James (see Best Crime, Mystery, And Thriller Books Of April and May 2019 here and here. The June 2019 list can be viewed here).
July 2019 is a particularly strong month for military and espionage titles including new releases from Mark Greaney, Ben Coes and Stephen Hunter. What follows is our compiled list of latest and greatest of July 2019:
Lock Every Door by Riley Sager. No visitors. No nights spent away from the apartment. No disturbing the other residents, all of whom are rich or famous or both. These are the only rules for Jules Larsen’s new job as an apartment sitter at the Bartholomew, one of Manhattan’s most high-profile and mysterious buildings. Recently heartbroken and just plain broke, Jules is taken in by the splendor of her surroundings and accepts the terms, ready to leave her past life behind.
As she gets to know the residents and staff of the Bartholomew, Jules finds herself drawn to fellow apartment sitter Ingrid, who comfortingly reminds her of the sister she lost eight years ago. When Ingrid confides that the Bartholomew is not what it seems and the dark history hidden beneath its gleaming facade is starting to frighten her, Jules brushes it off as a harmless ghost story…until the next day, when Ingrid disappears.
Searching for the truth about Ingrid’s disappearance, Jules digs deeper into the Bartholomew’s sordid past and into the secrets kept within its walls. What she discovers pits Jules against the clock as she races to unmask a killer, expose the building’s hidden past, and escape the Bartholomew before her temporary status becomes permanent.
Layover by David Bell. Joshua Fields takes the same flights every week for work, his life a series of departures and arrivals, hotels and airports. During yet another layover, he meets Morgan, a beautiful stranger with whom he feels an immediate connection. When it’s time for their respective flights, Morgan kisses Joshua passionately, lamenting that they’ll never see each other again.
As soon as Morgan disappears in the crowd, Joshua is shocked to see her face on a nearby TV. The reason: Morgan is a missing person.
What follows is a whirlwind, fast-paced journey filled with lies, deceit, and secrets as Joshua tries to discover why Morgan has vanished from her own life. Every time he thinks one mystery is solved, another rears its head—and his worst enemy might be his own assumptions about those around him.
Hope Rides Again (An Obama Biden Mystery) by Andrew Shaffer. In the sequel to the New York Times best-selling novel Hope Never Dies, Obama and Biden reprise their roles as BFFs-turned-detectives as they chase Obama’s stolen cell phone through the streets of Chicago–and right into a vast conspiracy.
Following a long but successful book tour, Joe Biden has one more stop before he can return home: Chicago. His old pal Barack Obama has invited him to meet a wealthy benefactor whose endorsement could turn the tide for Joe if he decides to run for president.
The two friends barely have time to catch up before another mystery lands in their laps: Obama’s prized Blackberry is stolen. When their number-one suspect winds up full of lead on the South Side, the police are content to write it off as just another gangland shooting. But Joe and Obama smell a rat…
Set against the backdrop of a raucous city on St. Patrick’s Day, Joe and Obama race to find the shooter, only to uncover a vast conspiracy that goes deeper than the waters of Lake Michigan—which is exactly where they’ll spend the rest of their retirement if they’re not careful.
The Chain by Adrian McKinty. Another favorite title for July 2019. Rachel is driving to an oncology appointment in the city when she gets a call from a panicked woman who says her child’s been kidnapped and that the only way to get him back is to join The Chain by kidnapping another child. So the woman has just kidnapped Rachel’s daughter, Kylie, from a bus stop.
Now the only way to save Kylie and the caller’s child is for Rachel to join The Chain by kidnapping another child, whose parents will also be forced to kidnap a child…and so The Chain goes.
Red Metal by Mark Greaney and Lt Col H. Ripley Rawlings IV, USMC. A desperate Kremlin takes advantage of a military crisis in Asia to simultaneously strike into Western Europe and invade east Africa in a bid to occupy three Rare Earth mineral mines that will give Russia unprecedented control for generations over the world’s hi-tech sector.
Pitted against the Russians are a Marine lieutenant colonel pulled out of a cushy job at the Pentagon and thrown into the fray in Africa, a French Special Forces captain and his intelligence operative father, a young Polish female partisan fighter, an A-10 Warthog pilot, and the commander of an American tank platoon who, along with his German counterpart, fight from behind enemy lines in Germany all the way into Russia.
From a daring MiG attack on American satellites, through land and air battles in all theaters, naval battles in the Arabian sea, and small unit fighting down to the hand-to-hand level in the jungle, Russia’s forces battle to either take the mines or detonate a nuclear device to prevent the West from exploiting them.
The Pawful Truth by Miranda James. In addition to his library duties and his role as doting grandad, Charlie has enrolled in an early medieval history course offered by young, charismatic professor Carey Warriner. Charlie feels a bit out of place- his fellow classmates are half his age- except for Dixie Bell Compton, another ‘mature’ student.
When Charlie hears an angry exchange between her and their professor, his interest in piqued. He’s even more intrigued when she shows up at his office asking for a study partner. Charlie turns her down and is saddened to learn just a few days later that Dixie has been killed.
Charlie wonders if Professor Warriner had anything to do with Dixie’s death. Warriner is married to a fellow professor who happens to be a successful author. There are rumors on campus that their marriage was on the rocks. Was Dixie’s death the result of a lovers’ triangle gone bad? Charlie soon discovers that the professor’s wife may have some secrets of her own and his suspect list is only getting longer.
As he and Diesel step further into the tangled web of relationships, someone else is viciously killed. Whose jealousy finally erupted into murderous rage? Was it a crime of passion or is there another more sinister motive? Charlie races to unravel this mystery: and to draw out the culprit, he may just have to put his own life on the line.
Theme Music by T. Marie Vandelly. For the lucky among us, life is what you make of it; but for Dixie Wheeler, the theme music for her story was chosen by another long ago, on the day her father butchered her mother and brothers and then slashed a knife across his own throat. Only one-year-old Dixie was spared, becoming infamously known as Baby Blue for the song left playing in the aftermath of the slaughter.
Twenty-five years later, Dixie is still desperate for a connection to the family she can’t remember. So when her childhood home goes up for sale, Dixie sets aside all reason and moves in. But as the ghosts of her family seemingly begin to take up residence in the house that was once theirs, Dixie starts to question her own sanity and wonders if the evil force menacing her is that of her father or a demon of her own making.
In order to make sense of her present, Dixie becomes determined to unravel the truth of her past and seeks out the detective who originally investigated the murders. But the more she learns, the more she opens up the uncomfortable possibility that the sins of her father may belong to another. As bodies begin to pile up around her, Dixie must find a way to expose the lunacy behind her family’s massacre to save her few loved ones that are still alive—and whatever scrap of sanity she has left.
Game of Snipers by Stephen Hunter. In this blazing new thriller from Pulitzer Prize winner Stephen Hunter, master sniper Bob Lee Swagger takes on his biggest job to date…and confronts an assassin with skills that match his own.
When Bob Lee Swagger is approached by a woman who lost a son to war and has spent the years since risking all that she has to find the sniper who pulled the trigger, he knows right away he’ll do everything in his power to help her. But what begins as a favor becomes an obsession, and soon Swagger is back in the action, teaming up with the Mossad, the FBI, and local American law enforcement as he tracks a sniper who is his own equal…and attempts to decipher that assassin’s ultimate target before it’s too late.
With all-too-real threats and a twisty, masterful storytelling, Game of Snipers is another gripping addition to a bestselling Bob Lee Swagger series.
The Russian by Ben Coes (July 30, 2019). Ruthless, clever, and unbelievably violent, the Russian mafia has rapidly taken over the criminal underworld in the U.S. and law enforcement has been unable to stem the tide. When a powerful Russian mob family declares war by publicly executing two high-profile American politicians, the message is unmistakable – opposition will be met with overwhelming deadly force.
With no other viable options, the President creates a clandestine assassinations team to find and eliminate the unreachable men running this deadly criminal operation.
The CIA recruits two Tier 1 operators – former Navy SEALs Billy Cosgrove and Rob Tacoma. But before they can even get started, the Russians act – murdering Cosgrove in his own home. Now Tacoma is on his own against an organization with endless resources and no boundaries. Step one requires the near impossible – find and kill the hidden mob boss behind Cosgrove’s death. To do this, he’ll have to take on an army in a battle where there are no rules and no limits.
Someone We Know by Shari Lapena. Maybe you don’t know your neighbors as well as you thought you did…”This is a very difficult letter to write. I hope you will not hate us too much. . . My son broke into your home recently while you were out.”
In a quiet, leafy suburb in upstate New York, a teenager has been sneaking into houses–and into the owners’ computers as well–learning their secrets, and maybe sharing some of them, too.
Who is he, and what might he have uncovered? After two anonymous letters are received, whispers start to circulate, and suspicion mounts. And when a woman down the street is found murdered, the tension reaches the breaking point. Who killed her? Who knows more than they’re telling? And how far will all these very nice people go to protect their own secrets?
In this neighborhood, it’s not just the husbands and wives who play games. Here, everyone in the family has something to hide…You never really know what people are capable of.
Smokescreen by Iris Johansen (July 30, 2019). In this pulse-pounding July 2019 thriller from #1 New York Times bestselling author Iris Johansen, forensic sculptor Eve Duncan journeys to Africa to help families torn apart by a violent attack deep in the jungle–but she may be putting herself in more danger than she knows.
A journalist shows up on Eve Duncan’s doorstep with a plea for help. Jill Cassidy has just come from a small African village with a heart wrenching story: half the villagers–many of them children–have been killed in a horrific attack by guerilla soldiers, the bodies burned beyond recognition. Now, the families desperately need Eve’s help to get closure and begin to heal.
But when Eve arrives in the remote jungle, she begins to suspect that Jill’s plea may have been a cover story for a deeper, more sinister plot. Isolated and unsure who she can trust, Eve finds herself stranded in an unstable country where violence threatens to break out again at any moment and with only her own instincts to rely on if she hopes to get home to her family alive.