cover image Bloody Sunday

Bloody Sunday

Ben Coes. St. Martin’s, $26.99 (432p) ISBN 978-1-250-14076-0

A simple premise drives bestseller Coes’s excellent eighth thriller featuring indomitable CIA agent Dewey Andreas (after 2017’s Trap the Devil): North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un is dying of cancer. With less than a month to live, Jong-un decides to go out in a blaze of nuclear glory and take two American cities with him. All he needs is a couple of long-range missiles, and it so happens that his ally Iran is happy to supply them. Dewey has personal reasons for wanting to quit the spy business, but U.S. president J.P. Dellenbaugh talks him into staying on and dealing with the North Korean threat. CIA newcomer Jenna Hartford, on loan from MI6, has designed a mission to poison Gen. Pak Yong-sik, head of the North Korean armed forces, and force him to divulge Korean secrets in exchange for an antidote for the poison. It’s a complicated mission, and in the end only Dewey has the skills, courage, and sheer badass tenacity to pull it off. A ticking clock ratchets up the tension in the best entry in the series so far. Agent: Nicole James, Chalberg & Sussman. (July)