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Jonathan Kellerman (2006) Gone.

In Kellerman's 20th Alex Delaware novel, the Los Angeles psychologist looks into the murder of Michaela Brand, an aspiring actress. Joining forces with LAPD detective Milo Sturgis, he investigates an unconventional acting school and the eccentric women who runs it. More people related to the school turn up missing and dead. The bizarre truth is more horrifying than anyone thought.

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J. Robert Kennedy (2011) The Protocol (A James Acton Thriller, Book #1)

In this conspiracy thriller archeologist Professor James Act(i)on gets away from a Seal Team that is chasing him. A bit thin on logic - but plenty of furious, fast-paced action, scores of victims and buckets of gore mixed with some humor and a little romance. A good read.

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Daniel Keyes (1995) Flowers for Algernon.

Engaging simpleton Charlie Gordon tells his own story in semi-literate "progris riports." He dimly wants to better himself, but with an IQ of 68 can't even beat the laboratory mouse Algernon at maze-solving - until an experimental treatment is taking him steadily past the human average to genius level. A classic!

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Yasmina Khadra (2007) The Attack.

A shocking book set in the context of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. Amin Jaafari, a hard-working surgeon at a busy Tel Aviv hospital, gets between the fronts of this bitter conflict. His world falls appart when he begins to suspect that his wife is behind a suicide bombing that killed 19 people including children in Tel Aviv.

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Yasmina Khadra (2005) Double Blank.

A dark tale about a leading Algerian intellectual, who has criticized the military regime. When the book seems to have triggered a series of murders, Inspector Llob investigates the trail of corpses that seems to lead to a gang of religious fundamentalists. But the story gets more complicated when gang members also turn up dead. A gory thriller by someone who knows contemporary Algerian politics first hand.

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Stephen King (2006) Cell. A Novel.

In this technophobic horror thriller cell phones are used to turn millions of unsuspecting humans into zombie-like killing machines. The blood is drenching the pages in this goriest, most horrific novel. If you like end-of-civilized-society stories, this is for you.

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Herman Koch (2013) The Dinner.

A very fashionable restaurant in the eastern part of Amsterdam: two brothers and their wives meet for dinner. The conversation is cultured and polite. But then it gradually morphs into a nasty hell ride as they begin to talk about their teenage sons - who are apparently homicidal psychopaths.

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Pavel Kohout (2000) The Widow Killer: A Novel.

In 1945, someone is murdering and mutilating the widows of war heroes in Prague, which is occupied by the German Nazi Regime. Pavel Kohout's novel tells the story of two cops: the young, idealistic Czech, Morava, and the Gestapo officer, Buback, who has a secret agenda. History lesson, packaged into suspenseful thriller.

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Vilmos Kondor (2012) Budapest Noir: A Novel.

Kondor's attention to historical detail lifts this thriller out of the average. Its an intricate mystery amidst a vivid portrayal of pre-war Budapest. Dark and edgy, with interesting characters and locales.

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Dean Koontz (2003) Watchers.

Genetic manipulation has created two extraordinary animals: one is a dog, named Einstein, the other is a murderous hybrid called "The Outsider." They are hunted down by the government and a professional killer. The plot developments occasionally seem a bit forced.

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Copyright 2012 by Claudia Heilig-Staindl. All Rights Reserved.