Also of interest ... in new thrills from true pros

The Scarecrow by Michael Connelly; Dark Places by Gillian Flynn; Gone Tomorrow by Lee Child; The Way Home by George Pelecanos

The Scarecrow

by Michael Connelly

(Little, Brown, $28)

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The best mystery writer of his ­generation has produced his best work since 1996, said Tim Rutten in the Los Angeles Times. Michael Connelly has brought back newspaper reporter Jack McEvoy, this time to hunt down a killer who’s a “master manipulator of the same new cyber­culture” that’s killing the newspaper biz. Connelly’s “masterful narrative” cuts between Jack’s point of view and that of the psychopath, creating a “creepy” L.A. that just might remind you of Raymond Chandler’s.

Dark Places

by Gillian Flynn

(Shaye Areheart, $24)

Former Entertainment Weekly critic Gillian Flynn “has figured out how to fuse the believable characters, silken prose, and complex moral vision of literary fiction to the structure of a crime story,” said Laura Miller in In Flynn’s second novel, a childhood survivor of a famous family massacre rethinks the murders only because she has a profit motive. At once “sardonic and riveting,” Dark Places confidently winds its way backward to an “ingenious” revelation about the brutal act’s true origins.

Gone Tomorrow

by Lee Child

(Delacorte, $27)

Lee Child’s 13th Jack Reacher novel “is the kind of patriotic vigilante fantasy a lefty can love,” said Charles Taylor in Newsday. Opening with “one of the most suspenseful sequences Child has written yet,” Gone Tomorrow sucks Reacher into a high-stakes New York adventure in which the bad guys are wrongheaded anti-terrorism officials. Child’s storytelling instincts are predictably unimpeachable. But “the main reason” to follow Reacher is the “pleasure” of witnessing the justice he inflicts on feds whose overzealousness threatens America’s ideals.

The Way Home

by George Pelecanos

(Little, Brown, $25)

In George Pelecanos’ latest, finding a bag of money leads to trouble for a young ex-con who’s working hard to make the right choices, said Carol Memmott in USA Today. As usual, the author seems as interested in studying how boys become men as he is in generating ­suspense. But the balance tips toward straightforward character drama in this otherwise “well-written and touching story.” Pelecanos remains a one of crime fiction’s “masters,” but this isn’t his most gripping effort.

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