ON THE SHELF: New Adult Fiction to thrill and excite

Published 8:00 am Sunday, July 9, 2023

This column was submitted by Evangeline Cessna, Local History Librarian at the Warren County-Vicksburg Public Library.

This week’s column features serial titles in the New Adult Fiction collection.

Alison Gaylin continues Robert B. Parker’s Sunny Randall series with “Bad Influence.” Boston PI Sunny Randall delves into the dark side of social media when her newest client, Blake, is threatened. Blake seems to have it all: he is an Instagram influencer, has a beautiful girlfriend, wealth and adoring fans. Blake’s manager, Bethany, brings Sunny on board to protect Blake and uncover who is out to kill him. Then, Bethany goes missing and the threats against Blake intensify. Sunny realizes the only way to solve this case is to look past the Instagram filters and find out who Blake and Bethany really are. While digging into their pasts, Sunny is forced to confront her own as some old friends and ex-husbands reappear.

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Iris Johansen’s latest Eve Duncan thriller is called “The Survivor.” Archaeologist Riley Smith has been asked to uncover the mysterious secret hidden on a remote island. When Riley asks Eve for help, Eve has to say no, but she is intrigued by the prospect of an isolated island that holds a secret locked in time. Riley is aware of the threat of treasure hunters that come to Southeast Asia and have no problem killing to get what they want. When she is able to successfully evade them, she finds a perfectly preserved body of a female warrior, which entices Eve to help solve this mystery. Riley then makes a living, breathing discovery that will change
history, but first, she’ll have to escape the island and survive long enough to share it with the

Mike Maden continues Clive Cussler’s The Oregon Files with his latest, “Fire Strike.” Juan Cabrillo and the crew of the Oregon battle an army of genetically engineered mercenaries and stop a hypersonic missile attack orchestrated by a Saudi prince. The ultimate goal for this villain is to unleash a deadly assault on U.S. forces, triggering a new Middle East conflict that will destroy Israel. The Oregon team must travel from the Amazonian rainforest to an abandoned monastery in Eritrea and into the mountains of Yemen for their final showdown with their bio-hacked foes. They will need every bit of courage and cunning they have to disable the ship-killer missile before the Arabian Sea becomes a mass grave.

“Liar!” is the latest entry in Fern Michaels’s Lost and Found series. Luna and her brother Cullen may appear to be polar opposites, but there are two things in which they are identical: they don’t let injustice stand and they always have each other’s back. Luna Bodman excitedly anticipates each new shipment of furniture at the restoration shop. Cullen has a knack for finding discarded pieces with an unusual history, and Luna sits with each piece to see if she can feel any kind of vibrations. When an old armoire triggers feelings that Luna cannot ignore, she and Cullen join forces to solve the mystery. Wriggling inside the armoire and closing her eyes, Luna feels an overpowering and disturbing sensation. She then discovers words scraped into the wood: “Help Me!” Hoping to find answers, Luna contacts her good friend, U.S. Marshall Christopher Gaines and the group sets out to trace the origins of the armoire. Their journey takes them to a military school in New England, and a ransom case from long ago in which the perpetrators were never found.

Chris Offutt’s third entry into his series featuring Mick Hardin is called “Code of the Hills.” Mick’s familial allegiances and old wounds collide with revenge to spell out the code of the hills. Though he thought he escaped that way of life, Mick’s retirement and settling into civilian life must be put on hold. He finds himself back in the hills of Kentucky after a two-year absence. He thought he would touch down there briefly before heading to France after marking the end of his twenty-year Army career. But his sister Linda, recently reelected as sheriff, and her deputy Johnny Boy Tolliver are investigating the murder of Pete Lowe, a popular mechanic at the local racetrack. Mick doesn’t want to get involved, but he reluctantly agrees to intervene in a family dispute where he uncovers evidence of an illegal cockfighting ring and another body. When
Linda steps into harm’s way, Mick is left to solve the crimes himself.

“Cross Down” is the 31st James Patterson novel featuring Alex Cross. Alex Cross is injured and only his partner and friend John Sampson can keep him safe and get justice. Washington, D.C.’s dynamic crime-solving duo have a proven formula for success: Alex Cross makes his own rules and Detective John Sampson enforces them. This time though, Sampson is reeling and on his own after a military-style attack erupts and brutally sidelines Cross. Sampson’s friend, his partner, and his brother have all told him that the attack patterns are too random, but he has a hunch, and he can’t trust anyone. As this shadowy force descends on the nation’s capital, Sampson must stand alone to protect the Cross family, his own young daughter, and every single American, including the President.

Stone Barrington faces down a deadly foe in “Near Miss” by Stuart Woods. While enjoying some downtime in New York City, Stone Barrington has an encounter that introduces him to a charming new companion. Unfortunately, she comes with the baggage of a persistent ex-boyfriend hell-bent on retribution. With each new disturbance, Stone recognizes that there’s an even more dangerous game being played behind the scenes. Stone is brought back on the radar of some old enemies after long-standing grudges resurface. He will need all of his tricks — as well as those of a few old friends — to get out of this trouble, but will he succeed, or will the danger catch up with him this time?