Summer Thrills & Scary Travels

Thriller authors Bell and Wilson send their traveling heroes into danger.

layovercoverBell, David. Layover. Berkley. Jul. 2019. 416p. ISBN 9780440000860. $26; pap. ISBN 9780440000877. $16; ebk. ISBN 9780440000884. THRILLER
On a layover in Atlanta, Joshua Fields meets Morgan Reynolds, and his life changes. They have drinks at an airport bar and a deep parting kiss that spurs him to scrap his plans to travel to Tampa to close a commercial real estate deal for his father’s company. Instead, he tries to follow Morgan, who turns out to be a missing person wanted by police in connection with the disappearance of Giles Caldwell, a prominent citizen in a small Kentucky town and CEO of the tech company where Morgan once worked. Joshua, who takes Xanax to alleviate his fear of flying, is ready for a change, especially after pouring out his heart to Morgan. And Morgan is a catalyst for that change, but he needs the truth from her before making a commitment. VERDICT Bell (Somebody’s Daughter) is a reliable author in the psychological thriller category. He takes his well-drawn characters on a twisty trail in their search for the elusive truth, which here comes with an unexpectedly comforting conclusion.—Michele Leber, Arlington, VA
Wilson, Carter. The Dead Girl in 2A. Poisoned Pen: Sourcebooks. Jul. 2019. 416p. ISBN 9781492686033. $15.99; pap. ISBN 9781492686040. THRILLER
On his way to meet a new client in Denver, ghost writer Jake Buchannan feels a strong connection with the woman sitting next to him on the plane. Despite questioning each other, neither can figure out where or when they may have met. Before departing the plane, Jake discovers that Clara has come to Denver to die. Disturbing events continue to occur as Jake’s client seems fixated on Jake’s life rather than his own. Then Jake is approached by a rogue private investigator with a fantastic story of trying to save Jake from a nefarious group targeting him, Clara, and others. The memory research clinical trial in which Jake was participating has led to the horrible deaths of two subjects. Then Jake is kidnapped, and the true fight for survival begins as events in his past threaten to destroy his future. VERDICT Best-selling author Wilson (Mister Tender’s Girl) delivers a solid stand-alone psychological thriller with a clever premise that brings to light the devastation of memory-altering drugs in psychological warfare research.—Joy Gunn, Paseo Verde Lib., Henderson, NV
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