Buckle up, detective fans, because there are a whole lot of great police procedurals to look forward to in the rest of 2021, both brand-new series and eagerly awaited new installments in long-running series. These five mystery suspense books have got all the hallmarks of a great procedural: detectives you’ll be rooting for, unexpected twists and turns, high stakes danger, and clever plotting. So whether you’re in the mood for suspense books about decades-old cold cases, supernatural fires, or simply some good old-fashioned murder mysteries, you’re bound to find something on this list to keep you turning pages deep into the night.
Bloodless, the newest installment in Preston and Child's popular Pendergast series, is chock-full of the suspense, plot twists, and fast-paced action sequences that readers have come to expect. Agent Pendergast is investigating an especially gruesome and upsetting case in Savannah, GA: bloodless bodies are appearing all over the city. As he wades deeper into the mystery, he begins to wonder if the killings are linked to a decades-old cold case, that of a man who hijacked a plane and then promptly disappeared via parachute. As both cases heat up, Pendergast once again finds himself fearing for his own life.
A Deadly Influence is the first book in a new mystery series by crime writer Mike Omer. Lieutenant Abby Mullen is the hostage negotiation instructor for the NYPD, and she's seen just about everything. She didn't think anything could shock her anymore, but then a woman from her past shows up asking for her help. Eden survived the same cult that Abby did, and now someone has kidnapped her son and is holding him for a massive ransom. She and Abby haven't spoken in years, and as Abby delves deeper into their shared past, she realizes that it isn't as far behind her—or as benign—as she thought.
If one detective working a case is good, two is better. In The Dark Hours, two of Michael Connelly's most beloved detectives, Renée Ballard and Harry Bosch, team up to solve two seemingly unrelated murders. LAPD detective Renée Ballard is working the graveyard shift on New Year's Eve when she's called to the scene of a murder: an auto shop owner was killed by a single bullet at a crowded outdoor party. Her investigation leads her to a cold case once worked by legendary detective Harry Bosch. The two put their heads together, hoping to solve both cases at once. But it's not long before the killer realizes they're on his trail, and suddenly both their lives are in danger.
In Forgotten in Death, the latest installment in J.D. Robb's bestselling series, homicide detective Eve Dallas once again finds herself in the middle of a whole lot of corruption, deception, and danger. She's investigating the murder of a woman living on the street who was known for keeping the cops informed of petty criminal activity. In the midst of this investigation, decades-old remains are found next door, in a building owned by Eve's billionaire husband. In order to find justice for the two women, Eve delves into the world of real estate development. But when she starts digging, she finds a slew of family secrets and shady business dealings. She's going to have to use every trick in the book to keep herself, and her family, out of danger.
Things are looking up for Detective Betty Rhyzyk. She’s settled into a happy marriage and been promoted to Sergeant in the Dallas Police Department. But when a hostage stand-off puts her on the phone with legendary cartel leader The Knife, things take a turn. The Knife has heard a rival is making a play for the streets of Dallas—none other than Evangeline Roy. The matriarch of a ruthless cult, Evangeline also happens to hold a personal vendetta against Betty. So who better to draw Evangeline out of hiding? Betty’s got two weeks to catch her. Or else.
With Betty’s young charge Mary Grace already missing—having left her seven-month-old baby behind in Betty’s care—and the drug dealers of Dallas donning strange red wigs and delivering cryptic messages, Betty’s in a race for answers. With the clock ticking down, it will take everything she’s got to finally put an end to Evangeline’s reign of terror and to keep her beloved Dallas—and her own family—safe at last.
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