When people ask me for a book recommendation, wanting a good page-turner, I love to push Michael Malone's Uncivil Seasons. It's the opening segment in his Justin and Cuddy
trilogy about two oddly matched detectives in North Carolina, and Malone produces a very rich reality to get sucked into. The plots are snappy, contemporary, and tightly woven; the characters, across the board, are nuanced; and Malone's way with scenery, pathos, and southern manners rings true. A book I've never heard a bad word about.