Longing for a new fast-paced political thriller to take your mind off of reality? These 6 audiobooks are full of action, international intrigue, and unexpected twists that will keep you hooked. Jump back into the action with favorite characters like Amos Decker and Alex Cross, or start a promising new series that features an exciting blend of politics, thrills, and science fiction.
WALK THE WIRE
by David Baldacci| Read by Kyf Brewer, Orlagh Cassidy
[Hachette Audio | 12 hrs.]
Narrating duo Kyf Brewer and Orlagh Cassidy deliver Amos Decker’s sixth adventure. Decker, a former FBI agent turned consultant who has perfect recall, and his lovely partner, Alex Jamison, investigate the murder of Irene Cramer, whose body is discovered in North Dakota. Brewer narrates in a gravelly voice, shifting tone and accent for the male characters. Cassidy’s no-nonsense performance is perfect for the female roles. Decker and Jamison are joined by CIA assassins as they investigate this complicated mystery filled with multiple murders and overlapping motives in the oil and fracking fields of North Dakota.
THE LAST EXIT
by Michael Kaufman| Read by JD Jackson, Emily Woo Zeller
[Dreamscape | 11 hrs.]
Narrators Emily Woo Zeller and JD Jackson are an excellent team in this sci-fi mystery set in a richly imagined near future. Listeners are introduced to Washington, DC, detective Jen Lu and Chandler, a piece of AI technology implanted in Jen’s brain. Zeller brings a thoughtful, nuanced humanity to Jen and the supporting characters. Jackson makes Chandler sound like both a brash, wisecracking cop and an AI entity in its intellectual adolescence. The unlikely partners tackle an insidious conspiracy in this launch of a promising series.
by James Patterson| Read by Brad Sanders
[Hachette Audio | 8.75 hrs.]
Patterson continues his series with this 28th audiobook featuring detective Alex Cross once again on the trail of a killer. Adding to the intrigue is the fact that one of the victims is the vice president’s ex-wife. Brad Sanders never trips up as Cross hunts for the killer. He delivers smooth transitions between characterizations that range from the vice president’s exasperated tone to the younger-sounding voices of Cross’s children and the emotions of his grieving best friend. One survivor in particular, a shooting victim, comes across as wonderfully acerbic.
by Chris Hauty| Read by Marin Ireland
[Simon & Schuster Audio | 10.25 hrs.]
Fast-paced from the outset, this audiobook features Hayley Chill, an agent of the Deep State, who wears many hats. Chill is the primary handler for the U.S. president, a Russian spy who has presumably become a double agent. Now he fears his cover has been blown. Narrator Marin Ireland brings the brilliant and fearless Chill to life with an intense delivery and is especially effective in her use of inflection and accents to create an authentic-sounding cast of characters. While calming the president, who does not know whom he can trust, Chill must also uncover the source of cyberattacks crippling the nation.
THE LAST AGENT
by Robert Dugoni| Read by Edoardo Ballerini
[Brilliance Audio | 10.5 hrs.]
In this second audiobook in Dugoni’s series, Charles Jenkins returns to Russia to bring back an imprisoned woman from a past mission. Narrator Edoardo Ballerini is a master at voices. For Jenkins, he creates a slightly easygoing manner, and for his CIA contact, a youngish-sounding voice. For the Russians, he uses a pitch range, and he’s consistent with all of them in this exciting cat-and-mouse adventure, which blends classic espionage and a mystery.
HOUR OF THE ASSASSIN
by Matthew Quirk| Read by Will Damron
[Harper Audio | 7.75 hrs.]
Will Damron performs Quirk’s latest political thriller in a smoky voice and no-nonsense tone. Former Secret Service agent turned security consultant Nick Averose is framed for the murder of former CIA director Malcolm Widener. Averose searches for the real murderer while unraveling political reasons for the assassination. Damron’s steady pace lacks emotion in a surprisingly effective way, ratcheting up tension during the action-packed investigation. The listener becomes caught in the web of intrigue, cover-ups, and secrecy that Averose fights to untangle as he attempts to foil a political takeover at the highest levels of government.
AudioFile Magazine—About: AudioFile is the place to discover more about audiobooks. Every day, its reviews and recommendations tell you which audiobooks are worth your listening time. AudioFile reviews about 50 audiobooks a week, features narrator profiles, and awards exceptional performances with AudioFile’s Earphones Awards. AudioFile publishes in print, newsletters, and a blog, and podcasts daily recommendations on Behind the Mic with AudioFile Magazine.
What to Read Next