Joe Joyce's The Trigger Man (Norton, $18.95) is another strong performance by the author of the memorable "Off the Record." This novel is bleaker, as it sends Fergus Calian, an IRA assassin who quit to hide in Boston, back into the Irish wars.
Michael Hamilton Morgan's debut novel, The Twilight War (Dutton, $19.95), is large of heart and scope, deep in its considerations of loyalty and courage, profound about fear and loss. A burnt-out CIA agent, a doomed Czech operative, mad religionists, the impenetrable forests and politics of Central America-all are cannily linked by a writer whose prose and intelligence enable him to keep us engaged as only the top echelon of thriller writers can.
Quiller is back, and in Quiller Bamboo (Morrow, $19.95) Adam Hall takes us to a grim and frightening Tibet, as England's tough, savvy, shadow-world agent seeks to keep alive a revolutionary who is the main hope for democracy in Communist China. Our hero battles a damaged mission, unreliable backup, a slowly healing sharkbite wound (from "Quiller Barracuda") and a huge number of the enemy. Tension is Hall's forte, and this latest episode in the career of an impossibly capable agent often is electric with suspense.