John Hart Books In Order

Johnny Merrimon Books In Publication Order

  1. The Last Child (2009)
  2. The Hush (2018)

Standalone Novels In Publication Order

  1. The King of Lies (2006)
  2. Down River (2007)
  3. Iron House (2012)
  4. Redemption Road (2016)
  5. The Unwilling (2021)

Johnny Merrimon Book Covers

Standalone Novels Book Covers

John Hart Books Overview

The Last Child

Winner of the 2010 Edgar Award for Best NovelJohn Hart’s New York Times bestselling debut, The King of Lies, announced the arrival of a major talent. With Down River, he surpassed his earlier success, transcending the barrier between thriller and literature and winning the 2008 Edgar Award for best novel. Now, with The Last Child, he achieves his most significant work to date, an intricate, powerful story of loss, hope, and courage in the face of evil. Thirteen year old Johnny Merrimon had the perfect life: a warm home and loving parents; a twin sister, Alyssa, with whom he shared an irreplaceable bond. He knew nothing of loss, until the day Alyssa vanished from the side of a lonely street. Now, a year later, Johnny finds himself isolated and alone, failed by the people he d been taught since birth to trust. No one else believes that Alyssa is still alive, but Johnny is certain that she is confident in a way that he can never fully explain. Determined to find his sister, Johnny risks everything to explore the dark side of his hometown. It is a desperate, terrifying search, but Johnny is not as alone as he might think. Detective Clyde Hunt has never stopped looking for Alyssa either, and he has a soft spot for Johnny. He watches over the boy and tries to keep him safe, but when Johnny uncovers a dangerous lead and vows to follow it, Hunt has no choice but to intervene. Then a second child goes missing…
Undeterred by Hunt s threats or his mother s pleas, Johnny enlists the help of his last friend, and together they plunge into the wild, to a forgotten place with a history of violence that goes back more than a hundred years. There, they meet a giant of a man, an escaped convict on his own tragic quest. What they learn from him will shatter every notion Johnny had about the fate of his sister; it will lead them to another far place, to a truth that will test both boys to the limit. Traveling the wilderness between innocence and hard wisdom, between hopelessness and faith, The Last Child leaves all categories behind and establishes John Hart as a writer of unique power.

The King of Lies

Jackson Workman Pickens known to most as ‘Work’ mindlessly holds together his disintegrating life: a failing law practice left to him when his father, Ezra, mysteriously disappeared, a distant wife who shares their loveless marriage, and an estranged sister who bore the brunt of their childhood trauma. And then Ezra’s body is discovered. Set to inherit his father’s fortune, Work becomes a prime suspect. But so does his sister, Jean. As much as Work’s life was overshadowed by his domineering father, Jean’s life was nearly destroyed by him. But does that make her capable of a vicious murder? Fearing the worst, Work launches his own investigation, crossing paths with a power hungry detective, a string of damning evidence, and the ugly rumors that swirl within his small, moneyed Southern town. Desperate for the redemption that has eluded him for so many years and stripped of everything he once valued, he fights to save his sister and clear his name in this poignant and thrilling anatomy of a murder and its ripple effect within a family and a community.

Down River

Down River is the winner of the 2008 Edgar Award for Best Novel. Everything that shaped him happened near that river . Now its banks are filled with lies and greed, shame, and murder . John Hart’s debut, The King of Lies, was compelling and lyrical, with Janet Maslin of The New York Times declaring, There hasn t been a thriller as showily literate since Scott Turow came along. Now, in Down River, Hart makes a scorching return to Rowan County, where he drives his characters to the edge, explores the dark side of human nature, and questions the fundamental power of forgiveness. Adam hase has a violent streak, and not without reason. As a boy, he saw things that no child should see, suffered wounds that cut to the core and scarred thin. The trauma left him passionate and misunderstood a fighter. After being narrowly acquitted of a murder charge, Adam is hounded out of the only home he s ever known, exiled for a sin he did not commit. For five long years he disappears, fades into the faceless gray of New York City. Now he s back and nobody knows why, not his family or the cops, not the enemies he left behind. But Adam has his reasons. Within hours of his return, he is beaten and accosted, confronted by his family and the women he still holds dear. No one knows what to make of Adam s return, but when bodies start turning up, the small town rises against him and Adam again finds himself embroiled in the fight of his life, not just to prove his own innocence, but to reclaim the only life he s ever wanted. Bestselling author John Hart holds nothing back as he strips his characters bare. Secrets explode, emotions tear, and more than one person crosses the brink into deadly behavior as he examines the lengths to which people will go for money, family, and revenge.A powerful, heart pounding thriller, Down River will haunt your thoughts long after the last page is turned. Praise for John Hart and The King of Lies Treat yourself to something new and truly out of the ordinary. Rocky Mountain News A top notch debut. Hart s prose is like Raymond Chandler s, angular and hard. Entertainment Weekly grade A A gripping performance. People magazine A marriage of carefully crafted prose alongside have to keep reading suspense. The Denver Post A masterful piece of writing. The News & Observer Raleigh, NC A gripping mystery/thriller and a fully fleshed, thoughtful work of literature. Winston Salem Journal The King of Lies moves and reads like a book on fire. Pat Conroy John Hart s debut…
is that most engrossing of rarities, a well plotted mystery novel that is written in a beautifully poetic style. Mark Childress, author of Crazy in Alabama Grisham style intrigue and Turow style brooding. The New York Times

Iron House

An old man is dying. When the old man is dead they will come for him. And they will come for her, to make him hurt. John Hart has written three New York Times bestsellers and won an unprecedented two back to back Edgar Awards. His books have been called masterful Jeffery Deaver and gripping People with Grisham style intrigue and Turow style brooding The New York Times. Now he delivers his fourth novel a gut wrenching, heart stopping thriller no reader will soon forget. HE WOULD GO TO HELLAt the Iron Mountain Home for Boys, there was nothing but time. Time to burn and time to kill, time for two young orphans to learn that life isn t won without a fight. Julian survives only because his older brother, Michael, is fearless and fiercely protective. When tensions boil over and a boy is brutally killed, there is only one sacrifice left for Michael to make: He flees the orphanage and takes the blame with him. TO KEEP HER SAFEFor two decades, Michael has been an enforcer in New York’s world of organized crime, a prince of the streets so widely feared he rarely has to kill anymore. But the life he s fought to build unravels when he meets Elena, a beautiful innocent who teaches him the meaning and power of love. He wants a fresh start with her, the chance to start a family like the one he and Julian never had. But someone else is holding the strings. And escape is not that easy…
. GO TO HELL, AND COME BACK BURNINGThe mob boss who gave Michael his blessing to begin anew is dying, and his son is intent on making Michael pay for his betrayal. Determined to protect the ones he loves, Michael spirits Elena who knows nothing of his past crimes, or the peril he s laid at her door back to North Carolina, to the place he was born and the brother he lost so long ago. There, he will encounter a whole new level of danger, a thicket of deceit and violence that leads inexorably to the one place he s been running from his whole life: Iron House.

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