Photo: Philip Friedman/Studio D

6 of 17
352 pages; Hyperion
Willie Sutton—hopeless romantic? That’s how J.R. Moehringer portrays the notorious real-life bank robber in his moving novel, Sutton. It’s 1969 and Sutton has just been paroled after 17 years in Attica. Driving around New York City with a newspaper reporter, he revisits the scenes of his life’s key events. Moehringer draws on research about Sutton’s criminal career: his heists, his accomplices, his escapes. But it’s the imagined, tragic story of Sutton’s one true love, Bess (“Her eyes—pools of blue and gold. He feels the earth tip toward the moon”), that will steal your heart.
— K.H.