If you are looking for the perfect gift for Father’s Day, look no further. From thrilling courtroom dramas where lawyers put it all on the table to win a seemingly impossible verdict, to police procedurals, and detective noir, these ten books are some of our most highly loved titles and perfect for the fathers and father figures in your life.
Earl Thomas, a straight-laced taxman with his fair share of police encounters, is the begrudging foreperson in a high-stakes trial in Miami. Laura Hurtado-Perez is a physician whose unassuming manner conceals a private pain. Joseph Cole is the founder of his local neighborhood watch, unduly obsessed with the families around him.
Along with four others, these jurors of varying ages and walks of life whose paths would likely never have otherwise crossed must come together to make one of the most important decisions of their lives.
On the night Melina Mora, a free-spirited woman both proud and kind, was murdered, she was seen with a young man of Gabriel Soto’s description. Two strands of her hair were found in his bedroom. Sandy Grunwald, a young prosecutor whose political ambitions depend on securing a conviction, finds herself pitted against Jordan Whipple, a preening public defender armed with a freshly discovered, dynamite piece of evidence on the eve of the trial—if the Honorable Darla Tackett will admit it.
What Sandy, Jordan, and Judge Tackett all know, however, is that the criminal justice system is complicated, and everyone has a story—especially the jury. And it’s their experiences, biases, and beliefs that will ultimately shape the verdict.
Things are finally looking up for defense attorney Mickey Haller. After two years of wrong turns, Haller is back in the courtroom. When Hollywood lawyer Jerry Vincent is murdered, Haller inherits his biggest case yet: the defense of Walter Elliott, a prominent studio executive accused of murdering his wife and her lover. But as Haller prepares for the case that could launch him into the big time, he learns that Vincent’s killer may be coming for him next.
Enter Harry Bosch. Determined to find Vincent’s killer, he is not opposed to using Haller as bait. But as danger mounts and the stakes rise, these two loners realize their only choice is to work together.
For decades, Judge Margot Burr-Nadir has worked tirelessly, case by case, to administer justice from the federal bench of the Eastern District of the United States. Her position already seems like the highest possible honor. So she is surprised when a call comes from the President of the United States inviting her to accept his nomination to the Supreme Court—not least because in choosing her, in an unprecedented attempt to heal a divided nation, the President has reached across party lines.
For Margot, this should be among the brightest spots of an already charmed existence. But the call comes on a family trip to visit their oldest daughter, Story, who has, without warning, vanished as if spirited away in the middle of the night by forces unseen. Margot soon finds herself thrust onto the national stage in the middle of every parent’s worst nightmare.
The desperate search for Story’s whereabouts soon intersects with the mission of teenagers Simon Oliver, Louise Conklin, and a young man known only as the Prophet. Together, they have escaped from the Float Anxiety Abatement Center in Chicago on the trail of man known as The Wizard: an unimaginably wealthy, almost mythical figure of unspeakable evil who has for years been taking whatever he wants without reaping the consequences. Stopping him, this band of young people hopes to accomplish what their elders can’t or won’t do: fix a broken world.
Noah Hawley’s new novel is an adventure that finds unquenchable lights in dark corners. Unforgettably vivid characters and a plot as fast and bright as pop cinema blend in a Vonnegutian story that is as timeless as a Grimm’s fairy tale. It is a leap into the idiosyncratic pulse of the American heart, written with the bravado, literary power, and feverish foresight that have made Hawley one of our most essential writers.
It’s the eve of 1953, and Aloysius Archer is in Los Angeles to ring in the New Year with an old friend, aspiring actress Liberty Callahan, when their evening is interrupted by an acquaintance of Callahan’s: Eleanor Lamb, a screenwriter in dire straits.
After a series of increasingly chilling events—mysterious phone calls, the same blue car loitering outside her house, and a bloody knife left in her sink—Eleanor fears that her life is in danger, and she wants to hire Archer to look into the matter. Archer suspects that Eleanor knows more than she’s saying, but before he can officially take on her case, a dead body turns up inside of Eleanor’s home . . . and Eleanor herself disappears.
Missing client or not, Archer is dead set on finding both the murderer and Eleanor. With the help of Callahan and his partner Willie Dash, he launches an investigation that will take him from mob-ridden Las Vegas to the glamorous world of Hollywood to the darkest corners of Los Angeles—a city in which beautiful faces are attached to cutthroat schemers, where the cops can be more corrupt than the criminals . . . and where the powerful people responsible for his client’s disappearance will kill without a moment’s hesitation if they catch Archer on their trail.
After moving from a small country town to Seattle, Heather Baxter marries Tom, a widowed doctor with a young son and teenage daughter. A working vacation overseas seems like the perfect way to bring the new family together, but once they’re deep in the Australian outback, the jet-lagged and exhausted kids are so over their new mom.
When they discover remote Dutch Island, off-limits to outside visitors, the family talks their way onto the ferry, taking a chance on an adventure far from the reach of iPhones and Instagram.
But as soon as they set foot on the island, which is run by a tightly knit clan of locals, everything feels wrong. Then a shocking accident propels the Baxters from an unsettling situation into an absolute nightmare.
When Heather and the kids are separated from Tom, they are forced to escape alone, seconds ahead of their pursuers.
Now it’s up to Heather to save herself and the kids, even though they don’t trust her, the harsh bushland is filled with danger, and the locals want her dead.
Heather has been underestimated her entire life, but she knows that only she can bring her family home again and become the mother the children desperately need, even if it means doing the unthinkable to keep them all alive.
Simon Riske sits in sun-dappled Napa Valley, toasting the record hundred-million-dollar sale of a rare 1963 Ferrari which he restored himself. The buyer, a sophisticated French woman, Sylvie Bettencourt, has purchased the car for an unnamed client whose anonymity she will guard at all costs. Riske enjoys her company and the flowing champagne until Sylvie’s formidable Russian bodyguard storms in, claiming the vehicle is a fake. Riske is given an ultimatum. Prove the car is the real thing…or else.
Meanwhile, in Lugano, Switzerland, Carl Bildt, banker to the rich and nefarious, is killed by a powerful car bomb, moments before he can deliver evidence to the authorities and disappear into witness protection. His beautiful and headstrong daughter, Anna, rushes to Switzerland to investigate her father’s violent death.
As Simon Riske strives to prove the Ferraris’ authenticity and look deeper into Sylvie’s past–and the identity of her client—he crosses paths with Anna Bildt and discovers they have an enemy in common. From the bustling streets of London to a secret outpost high in the French Alps, from the freeports of Corsica to the glittering beaches of the Costa Smeralda, the Emerald Coast, of Sardinia, Riske and Anna find themselves players in a deadly game, where billions of dollars change hands and knowledge is paid for with your life.
The seductive and relentless figure of Raymond Chandler’s detective, Philip Marlowe, is vividly re-imagined in present-day Los Angeles. Here is a city of scheming Malibu actresses, ruthless gang members, virulent inequality, and washed-out police. Acclaimed and award-winning novelist Joe Ide imagines a Marlowe very much of our time: he’s a quiet, lonely, and remarkably capable and confident private detective, though he lives beneath the shadow of his father, a once-decorated LAPD homicide detective, famous throughout the city, who’s given in to drink after the death of Marlowe’s mother.
Marlowe, against his better judgement, accepts two missing person cases, the first a daughter of a faded, tyrannical Hollywood starlet, and the second, a British child stolen from his mother by his father.
NASA is about to launch Apollo 18. While the mission has been billed as a scientific one, flight controller Kazimieras “Kaz” Zemeckis knows there is a darker objective. Intelligence has discovered a secret Soviet space station spying on America, and Apollo 18 may be the only chance to stop it.
But even as Kaz races to keep the NASA crew one step ahead of their Russian rivals, a deadly accident reveals that not everyone involved is quite who they were thought to be. With political stakes stretched to the breaking point, the White House and the Kremlin can only watch as their astronauts collide on the lunar surface, far beyond the reach of law or rescue.
Dr. Alex Cross and Detective John Sampson venture into the rugged Montana wilderness—where they will be the prey.
They’re not on the job, but on a personal mission.
Until they’re attacked by two rival teams of assassins, controlled by the same mastermind who has stalked Alex and his family for years.
Darkness falls. The river churns into rapids. Shots ring out through the forest.
No backup. No way out. Fear no evil.
It is 1969, and flames can be seen on the horizon, protest wafts like smoke though the thick air, and Easy Rawlins, the Black private detective whose small agency finally has its own office, gets a visit from a white Vietnam veteran. The young man comes to Easy with a story that makes little sense. He and his lover, a beautiful young woman, were attacked in a citrus grove at the city’s outskirts. He may have killed a man, and the woman and his dog are now missing. Inclined to turn down what sounds like nothing but trouble, Easy takes the case when he realizes how damaged the young vet is from his war experiences—the bond between veterans superseding all other considerations.
The veteran is not Easy’s only unlooked-for trouble. Easy’s adopted daughter Feather’s white uncle shows up uninvited, raising questions and unsettling the life Easy has long forged for the now young woman. Where Feather sees a family reunion, Easy suspects something else, something that will break his heart.
What to Read Next
Emily Hoang is a writer and editor who is obsessed with haunted houses, ghosts, and dreams. More info can be found on her website.