Thrillers Book Reviews (page 491)

FISHBOY by Mark Richard
Released: May 1, 1993

The promise of Richard's story collection The Ice at the Bottom of the World (which won the 1990 PEN/Hemingway Award) is only fitfully apparent in his surrealistic first novel about a boy and his first sea voyage. Read full book review >
MALEFICE by Leslie Wilson
Released: May 1, 1993

"A somewhat dour story recommended for the staunch of heart and stomach."
In the year 1655, during the English civil war, a parish woman is hanged for witchcraft, also known as ``malefice''; and in a series of guilty, grim soliloquies, townspeople and a local gentry reveal their own rather brutal sins and crimes. Read full book review >

Released: April 27, 1993

"Too complicated, but strong characters and fresh, smart—and fashionable—action make this Aellen's best since his debut, Red Eye (1988)."
Aellen, an always trend-conscious suspense-writer (Flash Point, 1991, etc.), outdoes himself here with a cleverly au courant—and engrossing—thriller that mixes three timely suspense themes: multiple-personality disorder (cf. Read full book review >
BLESS THE CHILD by Cathy Cash Spellman
Released: April 21, 1993

"Occult twaddle with a surface scholarly sheen: it's all breathless and urgent—and will probably Materialize on the bestseller lists. (Literary Guild Dual Selection for May)"
Spellman's corpulent, noisy, sagas with their pretzel plots (Paint the Wind, 1990, etc.) have dealt with earthly mayhem; but now we get a mammoth occult bash, much of the action taking place several mystical leagues off the ground and back all the way to ancient Egypt—with demons booming, gorge-rising sanguinary rites, and a cosmic battle of Satan's fan club vs. a grandmother. Read full book review >
FALSE DAWN by Paul Levine
Released: April 15, 1993

"Jake's law degree turns out to be a lot less useful than his demi-season with the Dolphins."
Beefcake Miami lawyer Jake Lassiter (To Speak for the Dead, Night Vision) is determined to save Francisco Crespo, his old landlady's son, from a murder charge Francisco wants to plead guilty to—little realizing he's buying into a fantastically twisted plot to steal billions worth of Russian-owned art. Read full book review >

THE THROAT by Peter Straub
Released: April 12, 1993

"Vietnam to the Illinois town of Millhaven (Straub's counterpoint to friend Stephen King's Castle Rock) and that will probably have the author's fans lining up at the cash registers. (Book-of-the-Month Dual Selection for Spring)"
Submitted by the publisher to Kirkus too late to review, Straub's latest is a sequel to both his bestselling Koko (1988) and his less popular Mystery (1989), resurrecting characters from each (Tim Underhill of Koko and Tom Pasmore of Mystery among them) to investigate a series of killings known as the Blue Rose Murders. Read full book review >
MARY, MARY by Ed McBain
Released: April 6, 1993

"Terrific courtroom patter, but by case's end most readers will declare a mistrial."
Did retired schoolteacher Mary Barton go on a three-day killing spree, murdering and mutilating three young girls and then burying them in her garden in the dead of night? Read full book review >
Released: April 5, 1993

"Melrose and his CIA colleagues, who all talk like characters from a WW II comic book or third-graders imitating Clint Eastwood."
An American freelance intelligence operative has to bust up an Anglo-Spanish parliamentary plot that would shuffle Great Britain's political management and possibly return Gibraltar to its previous owners—in another imported thriller by the author of The Kremlin Armoury (1992). Read full book review >
Released: April 1, 1993

"Unforgettable depictions of elephant slaughter, baboon mating habits, etc. An intelligent, at times lyrical, African adventure, told from a moderate feminist perspective."
Impassioned defense of Kenyan wildlife from second-novelist McQuillan, whose heroine, Jazz Jasper (Deadly Safari, 1990), now calls on longtime friend Emmet Laird, champion of the Save the Elephant cause, only to find him dead at his camp in the African bush, while his estranged wife Alicia and her latest lover Greg waffle about what they're doing at the site. Read full book review >
Released: April 1, 1993

"Though didactic (without being preachy) and uneven in places: thrilling drama, compelling dialectic."
From the author of the splendid Brain Rose (1989), another telling near/medium-future sociological probe. Read full book review >
SHELLA by Andrew Vachss
Released: April 1, 1993

"Despite the absurdly hard-boiled prose: a swift, savage, and unexpectedly moving exploration—somewhat reminiscent of Jim Thompson—of love among the swamp lizards."
Vachss's seventh novel—and his first not to feature ``outlaw'' p.i. Read full book review >
THE ANIMAL HOUR by Andrew Klavan
Released: April 1, 1993

"Best read with Dramamine. (Film Rights to Tri-Star)"
Klavan's specialty is noir psychothrillers that offer heart- thumping roller-coaster rides with plenty of twists and turns. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Gabrielle Zevin
March 3, 2015

A. J. Fikry’s life is not at all what he expected it to be. He lives alone, his bookstore is experiencing the worst sales in its history, and now his prized possession, a rare collection of Poe poems, has been stolen. But when a mysterious package appears at the bookstore, its unexpected arrival gives Fikry the chance to make his life over—and see everything anew. “Zevin writes characters who grow and prosper,” our reviewer writes, “in a narrative that is sometimes sentimental, sometimes funny, sometimes true to life and always entertaining.” View video >