by Bob Minzesheimer)
Greg Iles and Stephen King are members of the lit-rock group, the Rock Bottom Remainders, who write better than they sing.
The cover of Iles' latest thriller, Natchez Burning, which lands at No. 5 on USA TODAY's Best-Selling Books list, includes an endorsement from King: "I defy you to start it and find a way to put it down."
Weighing in at 791 pages, It's Iles's 17th novel to make the list, but he's never been higher than No. 17 before. Iles, who lives in Natchez, Miss., was inspired by unsolved race murders in Louisiana and Mississippi during the 1960s.
His acknowledgements include a nod to the Remainders "for forcing me to have fun regardless of what life throws at us."