Dive into a new chilling mystery or supernatural thriller as the nights get longer and the air turns cooler. Visit the seaside in Devon with Ann Cleeves’s newest Matthew Venn mystery, or explore 1990s Mexico City with Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s immersive novel. Read on to discover each new recommendation from AudioFile Magazine.
Jack Holden’s return to narrate the third installment in this series is a treat. Cleeves’s descriptive prowess transports listeners to the bleak and formidable cliffs of Greystone, Devon. When an adventurer is found dead in a dinghy after a raging storm, Detective Matthew Venn and his team are called in to investigate. Holden masterfully conveys their inner struggles, rounding out the humanity of the investigators. An added bonus is Ann Cleeves speaking directly to listeners about the origin of the Venn series.
Delivering the captivating twists always present in Lapena’s thrillers, January LaVoy is the perfect narrator to keep listeners guessing. Dr. William Wooler checks all the boxes for “perfect family man,”, but things aren’t what they seem. The same day that William’s mistress ends their affair, he loses his temper with his 9-year-old daughter, Alice. Then his wife calls to tell him Alice is missing. LaVoy’s narration perfectly matches the fast-paced plot as she depicts the bewilderment and fear of a family and neighborhood in chaos as people turn on one another and secrets are revealed.
Gisela Chípe’s skilled narration captivates in this immersive novel set in ‘90s Mexico City. Montserrat and Tristán are approaching 40 and struggling in their film careers. When they meet cult-favorite horror director Abel Urueta, he persuades them to help complete his decades-old final film made with a Nazi occultist. Chípe conveys the pair’s mounting dread as they’re drawn into a world of sinister magic. Her excellent pacing and dynamic voice keep the tension high as events turn deadly.
Kate Mara gives a quiet powerhouse of a performance of this taut and original thriller. Catherine Sterling and her mother, Ruth, are unusually close. Keyword “unusually.” The plot takes turn after turn you won’t see coming, and its revelations are persuasive and earned. Why do Ruth and Catherine have no family or friends? Why have they moved so often? Every time we shift from the private thoughts and memories of one to the other, the picture reveals surprising new detail. Skillful plotting is matched by Mara’s crisp, well-paced, and beautifully controlled delivery.
Scottish actor David Rintoul delights in this offbeat, witty collection of stories. Laughter-inducing and wry, the clever tales offer a mix of exquisite retribution and snoops, both accidental and intentional. Settings in such far-flung locations as Algiers, Melbourne, rural England, Shanghai, and the Vatican give Rintoul a chance to play with accents that inform and color the action. His characterizations enhance the stories even more. The many personalities are rendered in aural Technicolor and with real-world timing.