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Japanese crime, Mexican cartels, terrorists and… meteorology?

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What do you get when you cross a meteorological mystery with a Mexican cartel, domestic terrorists and a Japanese thief? It’s none other than this week’s On the Radar column, which picks up a diverse array of new crime fiction and thriller books that positively demand a little attention.

Operation Seeding by Michael Andrisano
A meteorological mystery seems an odd idea, but dangle something new and a little bit different under our noses and we might just go weak at the knees. For 60 years the US government has been involved with a firm whose speciality is to control the weather in order to hide its secrets. However, when a Senator discovers what they’re up to ex-CEO of the company Bob Thurston is determined to keep his life’s work safe. A retired army colonel and a female FBI agent are equally determined to ensure that Thurston and his secret are exposed. This book has the fitting subtitle Rain Rain Go Away Come Again Another Day.

17 Degrees North by Larry Seeley
When Jack Sloan discovers a satchel full of cash on a trail between Juarez and Santa Fe, he and his wife Darlene find themselves caught up in a dangerous mystery that puts their lives in peril. The money is linked to the kidnap and murder of a prominent hedge fund manager. With the Mexican AFI and the FBI working together to solve the case, the agents involved soon realise that things aren’t adding up and Jack may be able to help. Could the fund manager have staged his own abduction? Was his wife involved? With someone intent on getting the money back, Jack must use his cartel contacts and put himself in the firing line to solve this mystery.

Redemption Day by Steve O’Brien
Nick James is a terrorism analyst but when the US government starts to make spending cuts to domestic terrorism programs he suddenly finds himself out of a job. A group known as the Posse Comitatus resurfaces after years of silence and plans to take advantage of the economic downturn and wreak havoc on the US wherever possible. When a West Virginian sheriff is murdered, James, an expert on the Posse, finds himself framed for murder and hunted by the government and the Posse. James has until 19 April to work out what the Posse are up to and clear his name in the process.

The Thief by Fuminori Nakamura
This is a book we’re pretty excited about here at CFL as The Thief is the first of Nakamura’s books to be translated into English, so when we were offered a copy for our review pile, we didn’t need to be asked twice. The protagonist is a pretty skilled pickpocket whose life changes when he bumps into his first partner, Ishikawa, and is offered a job he can’t refuse. It’s an easy job: tie up a rich old man and steal the contents of his safe. However the next day he finds out that the old man was a prominent politician and he was brutally murdered after the robbery. The thief now finds his own life under threat… It comes out on 20 March.

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