Based on real-life author Elly Conway and her newly published novel Argylle comes a film like no other. After being rescued by Aiden Wilde and narrowly escaping death, Elly is forced to leave her quiet life behind and is plunged into one that she so often writes about — espionage. But that’s the very issue — Elly’s plots, twists, and turns of the Argylle series have aligned much too closely with the events of underground criminal activity. Now she needs to write the next chapter to predict their next move and stop them before things get out of control. Read these 10 novels for an extra dose of espionage, stories within stories, and the classic game of cat and mouse.
Although the film revolves around the unpublished fourth novel in the series, Agent Argylle had his start on the pages of Elly Conway’s debut novel. Published a month before the film’s release, Argylle tracks the events of the titular character striving towards his redemption arc. Fallen planes, high speed trains, and missing treasure are all connected — and only Agent Frances Coffey can keep the world from imploding — but not without help. Although Agent Argylle has ruined his name, she knows he’s the only man for the job. Can Argylle restore his place as an esteemed agent, and decode matters in his personal life at the same time?
Despite already carrying the weight of student debt, potential houselessness, and a dead-end job, Simi Chopra adds one more thing to the ever-growing pile — a jewelry heist. When her best friend Chloe is accused of using her knowledge of a museum’s security system to steal a priceless heart-shaped necklace, the two team up to find it and steal it back. Though they have no idea what they’re doing, things get much more real when experienced Jack steps in. Together the three assemble a heist crew, and between infiltrating a VIP wedding, and Simi trying to keep herself from getting arrested — or worse, falling for Jack — the necklace isn’t the only heart getting stolen.
In 1970s Mexico City, Maite thinks she’s just signed up for a weekend of looking after her affluent neighbor’s cat — what she doesn’t realize is that she’ll be hounding Leonora for interest. When Leonora doesn’t return, but gives Maite vague instructions to meet her in a spot that she never shows up to, Maite decides to take matters into her own hands. But she isn’t the only person looking for Leonora. Out there is Elvis, assigned to search for and bust Leonora for her political affiliations. The search for her stretches to hitmen, spies, and government officials as they look far and wide, desperate for money, answers, and freedom.
The twisted tale of the wealthy Laura Chase’s death has haunted her family ever since. Decades later, Laura’s sister Iris recounts the memories she had with her sister, and her recollection of the sordid string of mysterious deaths that tainted their family name. Separating this story are chapters from Laura’s salacious novel The Blind Assassin. Published posthumously is the story of an affair, an assassinator, and another planet that seemingly mirrors Laura’s own experience. Between the unraveling of dark family secrets, and Iris’s personal revelations that come from Laura’s manuscript, you won’t see the twist in The Blind Assassin coming.
On the lam after shooting a man in self defense, Melvin and his fiancée Bernadette flee Alabama to Ghana where they think they’ll be safe. Seeking help from Melvin’s friend — and Ghana’s president — Kwame Nkrumah, Melvin and Bernadette leave every aspect of their life behind in America — including their relationship. Although they now live under the guise of a pastor and his wife, Bernadette begins to develop real feelings for musician Kwesi Kwayson after hearing him play for the president. But the couple’s troubles don’t end there — an FBI agent knows exactly where they’re hiding out, and he’s on his way with guns blazing.
When her marriage ends, Special Agent Jessica Harlow leaves her Los Angeles base to accept an offer in Chicago where she first trained. It’s a blast from the past when she finds herself partnered up with Special Agent John Shepard — former Academy classmate, and pain in her side. Freshly out of a painful break up as well, John’s memories of Jessica are less than fond and six years later things don’t look much different. Unable to avoid each other, their undercover job to sniff out a corrupt politician turns the heat way up. As past mistakes and misgivings come to light, Jessica and John have revelations that crack their case wide open.
Parodying a spy novel, Alice — a.k.a. Agent A — goes undercover to protect the queen when it is revealed that someone is plotting her assassination. As a member of the Agency of Undercover Note Takers — wink wink — Alice is prepared to face witches, pirates, and aristocrats — something that protecting the queen will entail. But more challenging than all of that is Alice’s counterpart and fake husband, Daniel Bixby — a.k.a. Agent B. Despite being trained to hide their identities, it proves much harder for them to hide their true feelings for each other — good thing it enhances their performance — but could it also put their jobs and the queen at risk?
Emma Djan is a police officer turned private investigator — a reluctant career change after she refused the advances of the Commissioner. Her first case? Finding Derek Tilson’s missing father Gordon. Romantically scammed by someone claiming to be named Helena Barfour out of thousands of dollars, Gordon finds himself all alone in Accra where he was supposed to meet with her. Desperate to find Helena, to his son’s dismay, Gordon begins to investigate, but very quickly becomes a missing person himself. As Emma looks for him, she discovers a world of scamming much more sinister than just wiping out bank accounts.
In 1945 Barcelona, Daniel Sempere followed his father into the Cemetery of Forgotten Books and left the hidden library with a copy of The Shadow of the Wind, one that quickly became his most beloved possession. The author Julián Carax is completely off the grid, making Daniel all the more intrigued. Soon he discovers that someone has been destroying Carax’s books — and that he may have one of the last copies to ever exist. Once Daniel dives deeper into Carax’s mysterious history, he discovers dark secrets about his city’s own past. With unlikely allies, Daniel finds himself not only protecting his rare copy, but his life.
In the third installment of The Thursday Murder Club series, Cooper’s Chase Retirement Village is home to former spy Elizabeth Best, now spending her days solving murder cases with her friends Joyce, Ibrahim, and Ron. When a man from Elizabeth’s past comes back, he brings with him nothing but trouble. On the hook for the alleged theft of diamonds worth millions, he’s come to hide out at Cooper’s Chase. As bodies fall around them, the four friends are forced to find the killer, the diamonds, and the truth. With the help of their friends in the police force, and Elizabeth’s experience as a spy, there’s no stopping them from discovering it all.