Thriller: Stories to Keep You Up All Night

James Patterson, Editor . Mira $24.95 (568p) ISBN 978-0-7783-2299-3

The blurry line between mysteries and thrillers gets even fuzzier in this outstanding anthology of 32 new stories by such top genre names as Lee Child, James Grippando, Denise Hamilton and David Morrell. Patterson, in his introduction, talks about the "intensity of emotions" that thrillers share—as well as "the force with which they hurtle the reader along." This description fits such fine efforts as Gayle Lynds's "The Hunt for Dmitri," which takes the heroine of The Coil , Liz Sansborough, into an adventure involving her father, the infamous CIA assassin known as the Carnivore. But other extremely readable stories, like Alex Kava's "Goodnight, Sweet Mother," would qualify as straight mystery. Readers who favor one category or another may at first be a bit baffled, but lovers of crime fiction in general and well-told action tales in particular will be well rewarded. Would-be thriller writers can learn a lot about research and technique from Patterson's introductions to each story. Many of the contributors will be attending the first International Thriller Writers convention in Phoenix in June. (June)

Reviewed on: 04/03/2006
Release date: 06/01/2006
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