Thrillers Book Reviews (page 497)

OPERATION FANTASY PLAN by Peter Gilboy
THRILLERS
Released: July 1, 1997

"The narrative gets increasingly melodramatic, but le CarrÇ fans will love the bleak Spy Who Came in from the Cold first half."
Richly written debut spy thriller, with delicious turns and quirks about the CIA's penetration into major international businesses, that ends up merely bloodsoaked. Read full book review >
A JEW IN COMMUNIST PRAGUE by Vittorio Giardino
GRAPHIC NOVELS & COMIC BOOKS
Released: July 1, 1997

"Still, this is a project worth watching if yet another fine comic artist proves that a medium long associated with kids can handle the most serious of topics."
The first volume in a longer graphic novel, Giardino's tale of Communist oppression in Prague after the war recalls the best fictional and nonfictional accounts of life under Stalinism in Eastern Europe—the Kafkaesque bureaucracies, the betrayal of friendships, the constant presence of Big Brother, the unofficial anti-Semitism. Read full book review >

MEG by Steve Alten
THRILLERS
Released: July 1, 1997

"Weightless characters on a choppy sea—but hellishly riveting. (First printing of 250,000; film rights to Disney; Literary Guild main selection)"
As Jaws meets Jurassic Park, Meg (short for megladon) brings us a 60-foot, 20-ton prehistoric shark with a nine-foot-wide mouth that is likely to gobble up bestseller lists, as well as reappear in 1998 as a summer blockbuster. Read full book review >
EIGHT MONTHS ON GHAZZAH STREET by Hilary Mantel
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: July 1, 1997

"At once a riveting thriller and a subtle political tale, set in a place as harsh and unforgiving as the desert."
A chilling portrait of an authoritarian society as a young Englishwoman moves with her husband into a Saudi Arabian neighborhood and finds murder lurking behind the shuttered windows and closed doors. Read full book review >
TITUS CROW by Brian Lumley
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: July 1, 1997

"Carmine prose from the very pits of hell as Lumley blends Lovecraft's demons and gods with Edgar Rice Burroughs's wild sense of adventure."
Second hardcover volume of three, this one reprinting two ``adventure horror'' novels written in Lumley's Lovecraft-struck youth. Read full book review >

WRIT IN BLOOD by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 1, 1997

"Readers hooked on Lestat would do well to investigate Saint- Germain: He's altogether different yet at least as complex and satisfying."
Another outing (Mansions of Darkness, 1996, etc.) for Yarbro's ancient and well-traveled vampire, Ragoczy, the Count Saint- Germain—the ``saint'' component of his name is no coincidence. Read full book review >
TALK OF ANGELS by Kate O’Brien
THRILLERS
Released: June 27, 1997

"Passive and impressionable Mary is sometimes a frustrating heroine, but O'Brien writes with a striking grace and acuity that illuminate not only the landscape of but the complexity of the people living in it. (Film rights to Miramax)"
The skilled prose of Irish author O'Brien (18971974) transmutes the material of a conventional coming-of-age tale (``banned in Ireland in 1936 for its frank depiction of lesbianism'') into a rich, absorbing study of character and culture. Read full book review >
ASSASSIN by David Hagberg
THRILLERS
Released: June 24, 1997

"Another twisty thriller from the reliable Hagberg (High Flight, 1995, etc.)—and a welcome return for Cold War hardcase McGarvey, who's still a cunning devil when it comes to organizing solo operations across forbidden frontiers."
The security services of several nations want to stop retired CIA hit man Kirk McGarvey before he can complete a lone-wolf mission to Moscow that could upset any number of geopolitical applecarts. Read full book review >
WALKING BACK THE CAT by Robert Littell
THRILLERS
Released: June 20, 1997

"Even though the answers aren't as elegant or original as the questions, Littell (The Visiting Professor, 1994, etc.) delivers the goods with understated ingenuity and his hallmark tenderness- -a commodity even rarer in spy fiction than merited trust. (First printing of 50,000; $40,000 ad/promo)"
An aging KGB agent and a seen-it-all Gulf War vet join forces to thwart a ring of freelance assassins in this quirky Cold War thriller. Read full book review >
THE AX by Donald E. Westlake
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 20, 1997

"90s update of The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit."
A downsized line manager plots a murderous way to winnow the competition for his next job, in this unusually somber tale from the reigning king of crime comedy. Read full book review >
DOUBLE TAKE by Judy Mercer
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 16, 1997

"No page-turner, but Mercer nevertheless is a bright author with a fine sense of humanity and some ideas that may very well mature."
Mercer's second Ariel Gold thriller has a fetching cast and an ingenious plot device. Read full book review >
TATTOO by Anthony Britto
MYSTERY & CRIME
Released: June 15, 1997

"The kitchen-sink plotting and risible motive for the killings sink this first mystery, leaving only a plastic surgeon's endearing pipe-dream of life in the fast lane."
The life of a Beverly Hills plastic surgeon isn't all glamorous indolence—not if the surgeon is 40ish Dr. Gareth Lloyd, whose rounds of cosmetic and reconstructive surgery, Scotch and frozen pizza, child visitation and discreet adultery, are rudely interrupted by the shooting of his colleague Dr. Jack Ehrenberger, patron saint of Hollywood faces, upscale art collector, and husband of Lloyd's current mistress. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Kendare Blake
November 16, 2016

Bestseller Kendare Blake’s latest novel, Three Dark Crowns, a dark and inventive fantasy about three sisters who must fight to the death to become queen. In every generation on the island of Fennbirn, a set of triplets is born: three queens, all equal heirs to the crown and each possessor of a coveted magic. Mirabella is a fierce elemental, able to spark hungry flames or vicious storms at the snap of her fingers. Katharine is a poisoner, one who can ingest the deadliest poisons without so much as a stomachache. Arsinoe, a naturalist, is said to have the ability to bloom the reddest rose and control the fiercest of lions. But becoming the Queen Crowned isn’t solely a matter of royal birth. Each sister has to fight for it. The last queen standing gets the crown. “Gorgeous and bloody, tender and violent, elegant, precise, and passionate; above all, completely addicting,” our reviewer writes in a starred review. View video >