The Descent of Man

When he spots a pair of would-be thieves trying to hot-wire his car, mild-mannered wine steward Jim Sandusky gives in to impulse and takes off in -- and wrecks -- the thieves' van. But a moment's defiance sets off a chain of deadly consequences in Kevin Desinger's work of suspense.

April 19: "What you see first, after the starting gun's crack, is a column of bobbing runners, thousands of them, surging downhill..."

Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch is the winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. James Parker calls this Dickensian coming-of-age novel "an enveloping…