Here’s a little more than a handful of highly-anticipated upcoming novels from William Morrow. I’m sure there will be more added as the year progresses, but these stood out for me at the time of writing.
Featuring: Christopher Farnsworth, Glen Erik Hamilton, Greg Iles, Sheena Kamal, Matt Richtel, Simon Toyne, Don Winslow
Christopher Farnsworth, FLASHMOB (July)
Gifted troubleshooter John Smith, introduced in the acclaimed thriller Killfile, must take down a shadowy figure who has weaponized the internet, using social media to put a price on the heads of his targets in this intense, unstoppable thriller from the author reviewers have compared to Michael Crichton, Brad Thor, and James Rollins.
As a fixer for America’s one percent, John Smith cleans up the messes of those rich enough to afford him. But he’s no ordinary gun for hire. Smith is a man of rare gifts, including the ability to read minds. Arriving at the wedding of Kira Sadeghi, a reality television celebrity he recently saved from kidnappers, Smith witnesses a group of gunmen open fire, hitting the bride and others. Though he’s unarmed, Smith cripples one of the killers and is able to pry one word from his mind: “Downvote.”
Eager to learn more, Smith hacks into the brain of an FBI agent investigating the attack to discover the Bureau has been investigating a nefarious new threat called “Downvote,” an encrypted site on the “dark net” that lists the names of celebrities and offers a hefty bounty for anyone who can kill them—unleashing an anonymous and deadly flashmob with a keystroke.
Finding a mastermind on the internet is like trying to catch air — unless you’re John Smith. Motivated by money and revenge, he traces a series of electronic signatures to a reclusive billionaire living at sea, accompanied by a scary-smart female bodyguard who becomes Smith’s partner in his quest. The hunt for their prey will lead from Hong Kong to Reykjavik to a luxury gambling resort deep in the Laotian jungle. Yet always this criminal mastermind remains one step ahead.
The only way Downvote’s creator can stop Smith is to kill him… because while this diabolical genius can run, there’s no hiding from a man who can read minds.
Glen Erik Hamilton, EVERY DAY ABOVE GROUND (July)
A favor for a dying ex-con turns into a violent battle against a mysterious enemy…
It sounds like a thief’s dream to Van Shaw: A terminally-ill ex-con tells him of an easy fortune in gold, abandoned and nearly forgotten after its original owner died in prison. For the dying man, the money is a legacy to ensure his pre-teen daughter’s future. For Van, the gold is cash he desperately needs to rebuild his destroyed family home.
The grandson of a career criminal who taught him all the tricks of his trade, Van suspects that nothing is ever that easy. Sure enough, the safe holding the fortune is a trap — set by a mysterious player armed with tremendous resources and a lifetime of hatred. Now, Shaw’s partner is in the clutches of the hunters, and the former Army Ranger may be their next prey. But when the ex-con’s innocent daughter is threatened too, Van’s own hard childhood means he can’t let her come to harm.
To discover who has them in the cross-hairs, Shaw must seek out the hunters’ real prey. His quest leads him from an underground bare-knuckle fighting ring, which may be fronting a darker purpose, to a massive pop-culture convention, where Van and his allies, Hollis and Corcoran, play a dangerous game with foes on every side. It also introduces Van to a brash and beautiful aspiring journalist who poses a whole different kind of personal risk.
For years, Van Shaw has tried to live every day above ground, on the right side of the law, even though crime is his gift… and in his blood. If he survives the coming storm, he’ll have to decide what he wants — and whether he can live as an outlaw without sacrificing his honor.
The next novel in Hamilton’s critically-acclaimed Van Shaw series (following Past Crimes and Hard Cold Winter). Published by William Morrow in North America (July), and Faber & Faber in the UK (August).
Greg Iles, MISSISSIPPI BLOOD (March)
The endgame is at hand for Penn Cage, his family, and the enemies bent on destroying them in this revelatory volume in the epic trilogy set in modern-day Natchez, Mississippi — Greg Iles’s epic tale of love and honor, hatred and revenge that explores how the sins of the past continue to haunt the present.
Shattered by grief and dreaming of vengeance, Penn Cage sees his family and his world collapsing around him. The woman he loves is gone, his principles have been irrevocably compromised, and his father, once a paragon of the community that Penn leads as mayor, is about to be tried for the murder of a former lover. Most terrifying of all, Dr. Cage seems bent on self-destruction. Despite Penn’s experience as a prosecutor in major murder trials, his father has frozen him out of the trial preparations — preferring to risk dying in prison to revealing the truth of the crime to his son.
During forty years practicing medicine, Tom Cage made himself the most respected and beloved physician in Natchez, Mississippi. But this revered Southern figure has secrets known only to himself and a handful of others. Among them, Tom has a second son, the product of an 1960s affair with his devoted African American nurse, Viola Turner. It is Viola who has been murdered, and her bitter son — Penn’s half-brother — who sets in motion the murder case against his father. The resulting investigation exhumes dangerous ghosts from Mississippi’s violent past. In some way that Penn cannot fathom, Viola Turner was a nexus point between his father and the Double Eagles, a savage splinter cell of the KKK. More troubling still, the long-buried secrets shared by Dr. Cage and the former Klansmen may hold the key to the most devastating assassinations of the 1960s. The surviving Double Eagles will stop at nothing to keep their past crimes buried, and with the help of some of the most influential men in the state, they seek to ensure that Dr. Cage either takes the fall for them, or takes his secrets to an early grave.
Tom Cage’s murder trial sets a terrible clock in motion, and unless Penn can pierce the veil of the past and exonerate his father, his family will be destroyed. Unable to trust anyone around him — not even his own mother — Penn joins forces with Serenity Butler, a famous young black author who has come to Natchez to write about his father’s case. Together, Penn and Serenity — a former soldier — battle to crack the Double Eagles and discover the secret history of the Cage family and the South itself, a desperate move that risks the only thing they have left to gamble: their lives.
I rather enjoyed the first two in this trilogy (Natchez Burning and The Bone Tree), despite them at times feeling over-long. I’m very much looking forward to finishing this story, though. Published by William Morrow in North America, and Harper Collins in the UK.
Sheena Kamal, THE LOST ONES (July)
It begins with a phone call. Fifteen years ago Nora Watts gave her newborn daughter up for adoption. Now Bonnie has vanished and when the police don’t seem to care, her desperate parents turn to Nora as a last resort.
Nora knows only too well what happens to missing girls, especially when they aren’t blonde or white enough. Despite herself, she sets out to find the daughter she’s never known protected only by her instincts and a freakish ability to detect truth from lies.
As she plunges into her own dark past, Nora uncovers a violent conspiracy on a grand scale that will take her from the rain-soaked streets of Vancouver, to the icy mountains of the Canadian wilderness, and ultimately to a remote island where she will face her most terrifying demon. All to save a girl she wishes had never been born.
Matt Richtel, DEAD ON ARRIVAL (August)
A mysterious disorder threatens to destroy the world…
An airplane lands at a desolate airport in a remote Colorado ski town. On board, Dr. Lyle Martin, a world-class infectious disease specialist, is brusquely awakened to shocking news: everyone not on the plane appears to be dead. A lethal new kind of virus may have surfaced, threatening our survival, and now Martin — one of the most sought after virologists on the planet until his career took a precipitous slide — is at the center of the investigation.
The symptoms are the most confounding the experienced doctor has ever seen. Is it the work of terrorists? A biological attack? A natural occurrence? As word of the deadly sickness spreads, panic leads to violence and chaos. Armed and terrified partisans and patriots, stoked by technology and social media, have dug in, unknowingly creating fertile ground for the deadly syndrome Dr. Martin has begun to identify.
As the globe begins to unravel and paranoia and hatred take hold, Martin is forced to face a question as terrifying as this syndrome itself: is the world better left unsaved?
Simon Toyne, THE BOY WHO SAW (July)
Solomon Creed must stop a killer tied to a conspiracy stretching back over generations to the dying days of World War II…
Solomon Creed has no recollection of who he is, or where he comes from. The only solid clue to his identity is a label stitched in his jacket saying: “This suit was made to treasure for Mr. Solomon Creed.”
The jacket fits perfectly, and so does the name, but there is a second name on the label, the name of the tailor who made the suit and an address in Southern France.
Solomon heads to France in search of this man, hoping to discover more about who he is. But instead of answers he finds a bloody corpse, the Star of David carved into his chest and the words “Finishing what was begun” daubed in blood on the wall.
When the police discover Solomon at the crime scene they suspect he is the murderer and lock him up. Solomon must escape to clear his name and solve the mystery of why the last remaining survivors of a notorious Nazi death camp are being hunted down and murdered. Only by saving these survivors from evil can Solomon hope to piece together the truth about a decades-old conspiracy as well as discovering the key to his own identity.
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Don Winslow, THE FORCE (June)
Our ends know our beginnings, but the reverse isn’t true…
All Denny Malone wants is to be a good cop.
He is “the King of Manhattan North,” a highly decorated NYPD detective sergeant and the real leader of “Da Force.” Malone and his crew are the smartest, the toughest, the quickest, the bravest, and the baddest, an elite special unit given carte blanche to fight gangs, drugs, and guns. Every day and every night for the eighteen years he’s spent on the Job, Malone has served on the front lines, witnessing the hurt, the dead, the victims, the perps. He’s done whatever it takes to serve and protect in a city built by ambition and corruption, where no one is clean — including Malone himself.
What only a few know is that Denny Malone is dirty: he and his partners have stolen millions of dollars in drugs and cash in the wake of the biggest heroin bust in the city’s history. Now Malone is caught in a trap and being squeezed by the Feds, and he must walk the thin line between betraying his brothers and partners, the Job, his family, and the woman he loves, trying to survive, body and soul, while the city teeters on the brink of a racial conflagration that could destroy them all.
This is the great cop novel of our time and a book only Don Winslow could write: a haunting story of greed and violence, inequality and race, crime and injustice, retribution and redemption that reveals the seemingly insurmountable tensions between the police and the diverse citizens they serve. A searing portrait of a city on the edge and of a courageous, heroic, and deeply flawed man who stands at the edge of its abyss, The Force is a masterpiece of urban realism full of shocking and surprising twists, leavened by flashes of dark humor, a morally complex and utterly riveting dissection of modern American society and the controversial issues confronting us today.