The Best Reviewed Books of the Month: April 2022 ‹ CrimeReads

A look at the month’s best reviewed crime novels, mysteries, and thrillers.

Gary Phillips, One-Shot Harry

“Phillips’ knack for making the past feel immediate is on point in the well-plotted One-Shot Harry, his first novel about Harry Ingram … Phillips vividly depicts 1963 L.A … Phillips’ insight into racism, attitudes toward Black veterans, the Civil Rights movement, Black press and politics of the 1960s elevates One-Shot Harry. Readers will look forward to more camera work from Harry, and Phillips.”

–Oline H. Cogdill (Sun Sentinel)

Don Winslow, City on Fire
(William Morrow)

“Combustible … City of Fire, with its large cast of memorable characters and low-key allusions to classical literature, maintains Mr. Winslow’s well-earned place in these ranks. The book displays earthy eroticism, rough ethnic humor and a cyclical worldview as old as Ecclesiastes.”

–Tom Nolan (Wall Street Journal)

Janelle Brown, I’ll Be You
(Random House)

“Brown infuses this twist-packed mystery with an intense story of creating one’s identity, rife with deep family trauma and a low-key, creepy depiction of the dark side of twin intimacy … Brown seamlessly uses Sam’s retrospection into the twins’ childhood experiences impersonating and protecting each other both as character development and plot device, letting the latter flow naturally while never feeling cheesy. The perfectly paced emotional reveals of the twins’ shared history pull the reader toward fierce investment in Elli’s safety and the sisters’ reconnection. Brown has upped her game with this one.”

–(Publishers Weekly)

Gilly Macmillan, The Long Weekend
(William Morrow)

“Macmillan created a winning cast of characters here, presented in couples which both compliment and contrast with one another … although this may feel like an easy read, the details are important and the twists are unexpected! … A novel of not just nail-biting suspense, but also friendships, love, and a secretive past which loops into the present, The Long Weekend is one you’ll want to just go ahead and add to your TBR. Macmillan has once again come through with what is sure to be one of the most exciting thrillers of the year.”

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–Beth Mowbray (The Nerd Daily)

Rachel Barenbaum, Atomic Anna
(Grand Central)

“One of the many wonderful things about Atomic Anna, a book about Chernobyl, yes, but also about comic books, the power of math, finding one’s truth, and love, both biological and found, is the core group of women who ground it … The novel is masterfully plotted — one has to imagine an enormous whiteboard was involved as the author charted out what any given move might set in motion, each outcome with its own stack of connected dominoes.”

–Jen Doll (New York Times Book Review)

Candice Wuehle, Monarch
(Soft Skull)

“Irresistibly weird … The kind of book that you want to start reading again immediately after turning the last page — not just to trace the conspiracy at its heart, but to appreciate how its kaleidoscope of beauty pageants, Y2K anxieties, famous dead girls, and deep state machinations synthesizes into an exploration of what makes up a self … In the first half of Monarch, Wuehle conjures enthrallingly eccentric formative years for Jessica … A far more interesting novel than the international espionage thriller it could have been without Wuehle’s poetic, haunting touch … Monarch is ultimately a story about stories.”

–Kristen Martin (NPR)

Susan Rigetti, Cover Story
(William Morrow)

“… a roller-coaster plot that gives off huge Anna Delvey vibes and an ending that will leave you with your jaw on the floor … If you’re a fan of tales about scams, grifters, and mysterious schemes, Cover Story needs to be on your TBR list.”

–Alessia Santoro (Popsugar)

Sascha Rothchild, Blood Sugar

“Ruby Simon is the kind of character who lures readers into and then through a story, eliciting our amateur psychological diagnoses, stealing our breath with her cunning, and sparking serious guilt for having rooted for her even a little bit … This whip-smart, well-constructed debut makes Rothchild a thriller writer to watch carefully.”

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–Christine Tran (Booklist)

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