Picks and Pans Review: Great Reads

updated 01/23/2006 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 01/23/2006 AT 01:00 AM EST

Fiction

Blindfold Game by Dana Stabenow A taut, atmospheric thriller about a terrorist plot to drop a dirty bomb on Anchorage and direct America's retaliation towards Southeast Asia. The author paints convincing portraits of masterminds, mercenaries and CIA operatives, and jacks up the adrenaline with a high-speed ocean chase.

Company by Max Barry Fans of The Office and Dilbert—and anyone else who considers corporate life insane—will recognize the buttoned-down absurdities that Barry spoofs in this biting, hilarious novel.

Long Way Back by Brendan Halpin Halpin walks a tightrope with scenes of profound sadness sprinkled with truly funny moments in this novel about an ex-altar boy who worships God, the Ramones and his older sister. The author's greatest gift: his pitch-perfect ear for dialogue.

Above Suspicion by Lynda La Plante Author of the Prime Suspect series, La Plante keeps readers devouring pages at a murderous rate with this mystery starring detective Anna Travis, the clever daughter of a former London police chief.

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