Books To Read For Fans Of Gillian Flynn

Looking for thrillers that compare to Gillian Flynn’s creepy, bizarre, disturbing and completely addictive novels? Today’s list features a couple of books that you might want to check out if you love a Gillian-Flynn-like atmosphere in your psychological thrillers. If you have any more suggestions to add to this list, don’t hesitate to share!

1. Grist Mill Road by Christopher J. Yates

This book is absolutely twisted. The writing is very impeccable and compelling, as the story – as it alternates between 1982 and 2008 – explores a wicked father-son relationship, in the most terrifying way.

In 1982: we have a fascinating setting: mountains, glacial ponds, rock cliffs…where three friends—Patrick, Matthew, and Hannah—are bound together by a horrific crime.

In 2008: we’re taken to New York City, where the three friends – living new lives – meet again, but this time, the past comes back to haunt them, and the consequences are deadly.

2. Brother by Ania Ahlborn

“You look like an axe murderer, brother,” he said. “Like a goddamn horror movie, them elevators bleedin’ into the hotel lobby. Why don’t you get yourself cleaned up?”

This is the book that instantly made me go, “am I reading a Gillian Flynn book?” as I was reading the first chapter; it has the same addictive, moody, unsettling atmosphere in her other books – Dark Places and Sharp Objects, especially.

Brother is twisted as heck. There’s a family of killers that abducts and kills, and a boy named Michael who suddenly finds himself wrapped up in the midst of this unspeakable evil. It’s the first chapter that instantly grabbed me and convinced me I’ll be having a hard time putting the book down.

The writing is…superb, and sort of cinematic, with a Gillian-Flynn-like atmosphere, which runs through the course of the entire book, featuring frighteningly captivating family dynamics and the most intense slasher scenes…until the final, action-packed and powerful chapters. The ending as a whole is just…a rollercoaster of realistic terror!! You won’t be able to look away.

That twist ending is so utterly shocking and fascinating and gut-wrenching I gasped! Edge-of-your-seat suspense. And that final paragraph…it still haunts me!

3. Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter

While reading this book, it almost feels as if the more you near the ending, the more you’re convinced that it’s highly inspired by Gillian Flynn’s writing – because it’s at that point that it dares get extremely disturbing, and dark.

We have three girls. One went missing 25 years ago, and now the two surviving sisters must unravel the truth of what had happened because a recent brutally murder – of the husband of one of the sisters – might hold the key to this 25-year-old disappearance.

4. I’m Thinking Of Ending Things by Iain Reid

This gem has a Netflix adaptation releasing in September! I’m not kidding you guys when I say that the atmosphere here is downright creepy: the sun does not shine in this book, ever. It’s nighttime, snowy, stormy, and there’s a sense of dread and unease that accompanies the plot all throughout.

This weird, different and completely unsettling book follows the story of a girl and her boyfriend who are on a road trip to see his parents, and at one point, when they reach their destination, we realize that the parents live in a farm. Yes, fellow readers, remember those bizarre “farm” scenes in Dark Places and Sharp Objects? Well, something extremely similar happens here in I’m Thinking Of Ending Things. Expect to get the chills!

5. I Know Who You Are by Alice Feeney

Think of I Know Who You Are as Gone Girl’s evil twin. Yes, believe or not, the ending of this book is even crazier than Flynn’s debut. A woman comes home and her husband is nowhere to be found. He’s left all of his belongings behind. What’s going on? Why is she a suspect? And who’s her creepy stalker? The ending will leave your jaw on the floor.

See any title that sounds up your alley? Any more books you think should be added to this list? Let me know!

The Best Psychological Thrillers Of 2020

How’s your reading going so far this year? Read any favorites? Discovered any new authors? For today’s post, I’m counting down some of the best, twistiest, gasp-worthy thrillers that I’ve read this year (thus far). These include titles from Alice Feeney, Samantha Downing, Liv Constantine, and more! If you see a favorite of yours or have read a book (or a couple) that you’ve thoroughly enjoyed this year, don’t hesitate to share! Without further ado, let’s browse through these picks…

⁃ His & Hers by Alice Feeney

This book basically broke the record for MOST twists; after every few chapters, there’s a twist that makes you gasp. Feeney’s to provide twisty psychological suspense is absolutely incomparable.

A detective finds himself a suspect in his own murder investigation, and a woman must return home after the murder of her childhood friend. What the heck is going in? The final reveal is just so clever!

– He Started It by Samantha Downing

I’m still unsure about this one; it definitely won’t be for everyone but I admit – that ending caught me by surprise!

In He Started It, three siblings recreate an old road trip – that their grandfather took them on when they were kids – in order to claim their inheritance once they scatter his ashes at the end of the trip: those are his rules, but…

There’s something sinister hiding underneath the surface, and we never know what that is until the final, unpredictable, explosive ending that will leave you wanting for more!

The Sun Down Motel – Simone St James

35 years ago, Viv Delaney used to work as the night clerk to pay for her move to New York City. But something was never right at the Sun Down – a rundown roadside motel – and before long she’s determined to uncover all of the secrets hidden. In the present time, Carly – Viv’s niece – takes a job at the same creepy motel and starts an investigation into her aunt’s disappearance. She uncover the Sundown’s secrets before it’s too late.

This was a unique “haunted motel” story. A young woman, Viv, went missing while working a night shift in 1982 and it seems that no one put that much effort into looking for her. 35 years later, nearly everyone is afraid to speak about the woman’s disappearance. Viv’s niece feels that something doesn’t sit right with all of this, so she starts an investigation of her own.

The writing is clear and descriptive and I thought the author really perfected the dialogue style, and the final chapters had a clever conclusion to the mystery behind the disappearance, which made for a brilliant, perfect ending.

The Other Mrs – Mary Kubica

I’ve described this one as a “perfect pop-corn thriller”, if that makes sense. It is so binge-worthy and ends with a very fun twist. It also tackles mental health, which I think is an absolutely important and relevant topic to discuss in psychological thrillers. You can view my full review of The Other Mrs here and, without further ado, let’s see what this book revolves around…

In The Other Mrs, Sadie and Will Foust have only just moved their family from bustling Chicago to small-town Maine when Morgan – their neighbor – is found dead in her home. The murder rocks their tiny coastal island, but no one is more shaken than Sadie.

But it’s not just Morgan’s death that has Sadie on edge. And as the eyes of suspicion turn toward the new family in town, Sadie is drawn deeper into the mystery of what really happened that night. But Sadie must be careful, for the more she discovers about Mrs. Baines, the more she begins to realize just how much she has to lose if the truth ever comes to light!

What Lies Between Us by John Marrs

This story follows Nina, who is keeping a woman chained up in the attic of her house. What’s going on? This one was unexpectedly good, containing twists and turns that lead up to the most massive twist of all: what really happened that night? This book is also highly praised by Sarah Pinborough and it will soon be adapted by Renee Zellweger’s production company…because it is that good.

In The Clearing by J. P. Pomare

Perfect, wicked ending! There are shocking discoveries during the suspenseful final chapters and you‘ll be left with an O-shaped mouth once you reach the last paragraph.

If you’re into thrillers that revolve around cults, motherhood, kidnappings, where the past will come back to bite the characters, you’re in for a treat. If you haven’t read a book by J. P. Pomare yet (Call Me Evie, especially), you’re missing out!

⁃ Burn Our Bodies Down by Rory Power

Imagine if Riley Sager and the author of The Roanoke Girls wrote a book together => this book would be the result. Expect a creepy mystery, and a disturbing final reveal!

In Burn Our Bodies Down, a teenage girl stumbles upon a picture that points her home, to family she never knew existed. When she gets there, she starts making the most creepiest, jaw-dropping discoveries

The Familiar Dark by Amy Engel

A mother faces her worst nightmare when she’s told that her daughter was murdered. Prepare for a gripping story and a brutal, memorable ending!! I discuss this powerful read in detail in this review, if you’d like to check it out.

Dear Child by Romy Hausmann

Best abduction/survival” thriller I’ve ever read to this day. It starts off with a shocking prologue, before diving into the main mystery which just keeps on surprising and surprising. There’s a clever young girl that absolutely fascinated me, the plot line is so heart-pounding and there are so many revelations you won’t see coming.

Last One To Lie by J. M. Winchester

(—> available on kindle for 3.99$)

This was just…mind-blowing, unique and insane!! A woman is about to pick up her little girl from day care when they inform her that there is no record of her daughter ever being there, so then she phones her husband at the school where he teaches, only to find out that he had never worked there! This one will absolutely mess with your head. A true psychological thriller with non-stopping suspense.

The Wife Stalker by Liv Constantine

Well, that was one heck of a twist. You think you know where the story is going and then BAM, completely catches you off guard. A woman moves to a seaside town for a fresh start and then meets a handsome, successful lawyer…who’s married. This one starts off with a Fatal Attraction vibe, and it progresses towards a wicked ending.

This Is How I Lied by Heather Gudenkauf

“…detective hunts for clues in the slaying of best friend.”

A 25-year-old case of a teenage girl who was found murdered in a cave near her home is being reopened due to new evidence. We’re given the POVs of the victim (her account of what happened 25 years ago), her best friend (who’s the detective leading the case), and her sister.

This Is How I Lied is a murder mystery that keeps the reader curious as to where the story’s going with a slew of twists all throughout, ending with a heart-pounding revelation regarding the identity of the perpetrator, painting a clear image of the topic that the author wanted to discuss.

A Good Marriage by Kimberly McCreight

This book is perfect for readers who are looking for a story that’s part domestic thriller, part legal drama.

Federal prosecutor Lizzie is working late at elite law firm Young & Crane when she gets a call from a prison inmate; Zach is desperate: his wife, has been found dead at the bottom of the stairs in their Brooklyn brownstone, and he’s the primary suspect.

As Lizzie is drawn deep into the dark heart of this case, she learns that Zach and Amanda are hiding secrets, that their marriage isn’t what it seems. In the end, she’s left wondering not only whether her own marriage can be saved, but what it means to have a good marriage in the first place.

Cracked by Louise McCreesh

Seven mental patients with a dark past reunite to investigate their psychiatrist’s brutal murder in McCreesh’s debut, Cracked.

The author grips readers with the main setting: the halls and room of a psychiatric hospital. What also keeps us eager to turn the pages is the mystery of Jenny’s secret from her darkest days as a patient in Hillside psychiatric hospital 9 years ago. The story goes back and forth between the past, which takes place at the hospital, and the present, where our protagonist is on edge after her former psychiatrist is brutally murdered.

So now, she must reunite with her former roommates to find out who the killer is and why is he/she sending them threatening messages, warning them to keep quiet. Through protagonist Jenny’s point of view, we understand that everyone has a secret, and given the various mental states of our characters (schizophrenia, etc), their accounts of what had been happening at the hospital tend to be unreliable, making it harder to know who to trust. The twists were incredibly enjoyable in their unpredictability, which made for a fresh, well-plotted whodunnit mystery.

What about you guys? What book(s) completely blew you away this year?

Kindle Daily Deals: Thriller/Mystery (US)

Today’s kindle deals are here!! These include titles from Mary Kubica, Adrian McKinty, and more! Which of these sounds up your alley, fellow bookworms?

The Good Girl by Mary Kubica

A young woman is held captive in a secluded cabin by a mysterious stranger she left a bar with. Her mother will stop at nothing to find her…

The Chain by Adrian McKinty

A panicked stranger calls your phone. Your child was kidnapped, and so was his…by *another* stranger. To get your child back, you need to kidnap another child within 24 hours. If you don’t, your child will be murdered. You are now part of The Chain.

Unspeakable Things by Jess Lourey

Inspired by a true story…

Local boys go missing, and then return violent. Are the rumors true about what happened to these children? Main character Cassie’s sister is also a victim, and she must dig for answers if she wants to survive!

Stillhouse Lake by Rachel Caine

A happily-married woman with beautiful children finds out her husband is a serial killer. With her ex now in prison, she finds refuge in a house on remote Stillhouse Lake. Soon, a body turns up and her children are hunted by a horrific killer.

1. Into The Darkest Corner by Elizabeth Haynes

“It’s like watching a horror movie over and over again, without ever becoming immune to the terror.”

This is a dark psychological thriller that meticulously explores what it’s like to live with Obsessive Compulsive Behavior, and suffer through domestic abuse in a frighteningly realistic way. There’s also a really good backstory that explains where our protagonist’s psychological condition stems from.

If you’re looking to understand this illness, and/or usually gravitate to plots with the theme of obsessive love, Into The Darkest Corner is definitely the book for you. A bit towards the ending, there’s a terrific action-packed scene where our protagonist must escape the perpetrator; that particular scene is so, incredibly entertaining!

The Perfect Child by Lucinda Berry

A couple adopts a disturbed 6-year-old girl in The Perfect Child. Disturbing. Original. Mind blowing edge-of-your-seat psychological thriller!! The final reveal will leave you frantically turning the pages.

Nine Elms by Robert Bryndza

Unspeakable Things by Jess Lourey

Children go missing and come back violent in this story that is based on true events. You can expect a sense of unease all throughout the book and a couple of disturbing elements that I think will provoke strong and possibly-polarized reactions from readers.

Saving Meghan by D. J. Palmer

A daughter is suffering from an unexplained illness and doctors think her mother is hurting her. Is this Münchausen syndrome by proxy or something more sinister? This book was intense, action-packed and once it gets started on the heart-pounding suspense from the first chapter, it never lets up. The finale is just more page-turning goodness as the characters start to get daring and reckless!!

Little Voices by Vanessa Lillie

A woman is giving birth when she learns of her friend’s murder. She investigates while haunted by scary voices caused by postpartum depression. This one was different. It’s a psychological/political thriller with a heartbreaking twist. A really interesting debut!

I Dare You by Sam Carrington

Two girls went out to play. Only one returned, claiming she saw a man “Bill” take her friend away. After years in prison, Bill comes back for revenge. I enjoyed this so much!! Very clever and filled with twists I didn’t coming that I couldn’t resist reading it in one sitting!!

The following titles I have not read yet but are definitely on my soon-TBR:

Have You Seen Me by Kate White

A journalist enters her office where she works when her boss informs her that she hasn’t worked there in five years. She slowly comes to terms that she might’ve lost her memory, and has possibly experienced a dissociative state after a mysterious accident.

The Darkest Secret by Alex Marwood

A 3-year-old identical twin goes missing. 12 years later, people are gathering for her father’s funeral. This is said to be Marwood’s best novel!

– Saving Meghan by D. J. Palmer

⁃ Verity by Colleen Hoover

A woman gets a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to complete the series of a well-celebrated, successful author named Verity Crawford. When she arrives at the author’s house and gets hold of the manuscript, she’s shocked by the content; the shocking, twisted admissions within the unfinished book are unbelievable!! This insane book will disturb you and challenge your sanity. An absolute must-read for psychological thriller readers.

⁃ The One by John Marrs

This is the most celebrated thriller by this author and by far Marrs’ most unique work. Imagine that there’s a possibility that you could be matched with your soulmate, with *one* simple DNA test. Well, according to Mr John Marrs, this has a few, um, complications. Not only “happily ever after” isn’t guaranteed – worse, your worst nightmares may also become reality

⁃ When I Was You by Minka Kent

First, I’d like to mention that my first read of this author’s, titled “The Memory Watcher” is simply one of the better domestic thrillers out there, and the ending will shock you. When I Was You is may not be as *dark*, but it’s the perfect thriller if you’re looking for an easy, fast-paced, bingey read about a woman who lives in complete seclusion after surviving a brutal attack.

Jar Of Hearts by Jennifer Hillier

When she was sixteen, Angela disappeared without a trace. Fourteen years later, her remains are discovered in the woods near her best friend Geo’s childhood home. Detective Kaiser knows the truth: Angela was a victim of Calvin James; Geo’s high school boyfriend.

Now new bodies are starting to turn up, killed in the exact same manner as Angela.

The Perfect Girlfriend by Karen Hamilton

Juliette loves Nate.

She will follow him anywhere; she’s become a flight attendant for his airline so she can keep a closer eye on him.

They are meant to be.

The fact that Nate broke up with her six months ago means nothing. Because Juliette has a plan to win him back.

She is the perfect girlfriend. And she’ll make sure no one stops her from getting exactly what she wants.

True love hurts, but Juliette knows it’s worth all the pain…

The Winter Sister by Megan Collins

Sixteen years ago, Sylvie’s sister Persephone never came home. Out too late with the boyfriend she was forbidden to see, Persephone was missing for three days before her body was found—and years later, her murder remains unsolved.

In the present day, Sylvie returns home to care for her estranged mother, Annie, as she undergoes treatment for cancer. And Persephone’s former boyfriend, Ben, is now a nurse at the cancer center where Annie is being treated.

Sylvie’s always believed Ben was responsible for the murder. But now, she will uncover the ugly truth about what really happened that night.

The Weight of Lies by Emily Carpenter

Meg Ashley leads a life of a privilege, thanks to a bestselling horror novel her mother wrote decades ago. Desperate to break free of her mother, she accepts a proposal to write a scandalous, tell-all memoir.

Digging into the past—and her mother’s cult classic—draws Meg to Bonny Island. Island life seems idyllic at first, but as Meg starts to ask questions, disturbing revelations come to light…

Soon, Meg’s search leads her to question the facts of a decades-old murder. She’s warned to leave it alone, but as the lies pile up, Meg knows she’s getting close to finding a murderer. Her mother’s book is nothing compared to the chilling truth that lurks off the page.

⁃ Jane Doe by Victoria Stone

A sociopathic woman is set on getting her revenge on a man she purposely meets after securing a job at an insurance agency. You keep turning the pages because you simply have to know what happens next. Dark and twisty, and the ending – well, it was perfect.

⁃ Blood Orange by Harriet Tyce

I would describe this one as unputdownable and unpredictable. The protagonist is a lawyer whose new client confesses her that she, indeed, stabbed her husband, and refuses to plead “not guilty”.

2. Lock Me In by Kate Simants

“You want to know fear? Imagine someone there, every day when you wake. Imagine knowing, without even opening your eyes, that someone is watching you.”

This was one heck of a debut with plenty of twists, and there are massive final revelations that are truly disturbing.

In Lock Me In, Simants writes an edge-of-your-seat thriller where a young girl named Ellie suffers from Dissociative Identity Disorder; she deals with what she calls “fugues”, and there’s a mysterious disappearance that she thinks she’s responsible for. We follow two POVs (Ellie + the detective) and Ellie’s sessions with her psychotherapist. And nothing is as it seems.

This psychological condition was portrayed in such a chilling, believable way in this book and I was completely engrossed by the originality and insightfulness that were provided.

3. The Eighth Girl by Maxine Mei-Fung Chung

This was written by a real-life psychotherapist! Dissociative Identity Disorder is the heart of this book and in this book, we get to explore it through the eyes of a psychotherapist and patient with dark backstories. The patient, Alexa, soon becomes a trigger for her psychotherapist, Daniel.

The Eighth Girl also delves into the topics of abuse, trauma, memory and in addition to major aspects of suspense, which is ratcheted up during the last pages, there’s a huge twist that will make you gasp!

4. The Woman In The Window by A. J. Finn

Anna Fox lives alone, a recluse in her New York City home, unable to venture outside. She spends her day drinking wine (maybe too much), watching old movies, recalling happier times . . . and spying on her neighbors.

Then the Russells move into the house across the way: a father, a mother and their teenage son. The perfect family. But when Anna, gazing out her window one night, witnesses a murder, her world begins to crumble. Was what she saw real? Or did she imagine it?

The Woman In The Window is an enjoyable whodunnit mystery where the main character suffers from agoraphobia. The writing is different, and a bit slow during the first half, but it eventually picks up afterwards and leads up to a satisfactory ending. What’s most fascinating about this book is how the author navigated the protagonist’s condition in a such a raw way!

5. Cracked by Louise McCreesh

Readers are pulled deep into the intertwined webs of seven patients’ dark secrets in Louise McCreesh’s debut, Cracked, which explores multiples mental illnesses.

What mainly keeps the reader eager to turn the pages in this book is the mystery of main character Jenny’s secret from her darkest days as a patient in Hillside psychiatric hospital 9 years ago. The story goes back and forth between the past, which takes place at the hospital, and the present, where our protagonist is on edge after her former psychiatrist is brutally murdered.

So now, she must reunite with her former roommates to find out who the killer might be and why is he/she sending them threatening messages, warning them to keep quiet. There are many twists and turns here, and through protagonist Jenny’s point of view, we understand that everyone has a secret, and given the various mental illnesses which our characters suffer from (schizophrenia, etc), their accounts of what had been happening at the hospital tend to be unreliable, making it harder to know who to trust.

The Widow by Fiona Barton

Jean has been keeping quiet about the crime her husband was suspected of for years, until he died. She was too busy being the perfect wife. Now there’s no reason to stay quiet. The one lesson she has learned is that she can make people believe anything…

I Know You Know by Gilly Macmillan

Twenty years ago, 11-year-olds Charlie and Scott were murdered, and that has been haunting their childhood friend Cody ever since. Hoping to uncover new evidence, he starts a podcast. But Charlie’s mother doesn’t want this case reopened.

Then a long-dead body is found in the same location where the boys had been murdered. Are the two murders connected?

The Apartment by K. L. Slater

It’s an opportunity she can’t refuse. The woman before her tried…

Freya and her 5-year-old daughter become the new tenants of a shockingly affordable flat in London: Adder House.

But this house has secrets, and Freya feels as if she’s being watched: objects moving, the blinking light of a concealed camera…Was it really chance that led her here, or something unthinkably dark? Can Freya and her daughter get out, or will they be locked in forever?

When You Disappeared by John Marrs

Catherine wakes up to the news that her husband is missing. But he can’t hide forever. When he reappears 25 years later, Catherine will finally learn who he is. And wish she’d stayed in the dark.

I’ll Never Tell by Catherine McKenzie

After their parents’ sudden deaths, the MacAllister siblings return to camp to claim their inheritance, which stipulates that until they unravel the mystery of what happened to Amanda – the woman who was found murdered at camp 20 years ago – they can’t settle the estate.

Any of them could have done it. Will they work together to finally discover the truth, or will their secrets finally tear the family apart?

Blink by K. L. Slater

It’s been 3 years, and Toni’s five-year-old daughter Evie is still missing – she’d disappeared after leaving school, never to be seen again. But Toni believes her daughter is alive. And as she begins to silently piece together her memories, the full story of the past begins to reveal itself, and she might not be prepared for the final, shocking truth.

I Know Everything by Matthew Farrell

Psychiatrist Randall’s wife had died in a car accident, but police investigator Susan Adler knows that she has a murder on her hands; she also knows that he could not have killed his wife.

Then he receives a visit from a stranger with shocking information to share about his wife’s death…only if Randall revealed his past, dark secrets. Soon, Randall begins to doubt himself, and struggles to keep sane.

And the next murder that will strike…is too close to home.

⁃ Girl Last Seen by Nina Laurin

A woman comes across a poster of a missing girl who looks exactly like her…from 13 years ago.

⁃ In Her Eyes by Sarah Alderson

This is a chilling story that starts right off with a realistically-terrifying home invasion. A woman is walking down the stairs of her home when she sees a dark figure on the landing: a man had broken into her home!! Later on, the woman must guess who the perpetrator is, and she can’t trust anyone. Not herself, and not even her family. I’d definitely recommend this if you’re looking for a solid, fast-paced psychological thriller with twists and a well-plotted ending!

If You Tell by Gregg Olsen

A sadistic mother subjected her three girls to unimaginable torture and terror. Through it all, they developed a defiant bond that helped them escape their escalating nightmare that culminated in multiple murders.

Does these sound like something you would read? Let me know!

10 Fast-Paced Thrillers With A Twist

1. Something In The Water by Catherine Steadman

This one was very entertaining. It starts off with a heart-pounding scene featuring female protagonist Erin in the middle of the woods, digging up a grave to bury her husband.

Erin takes us to where it all started – to the moment she and her husband discovered a treasure at the bottom of the ocean.

Something In The Water is filled with suspense and continues to be an addictive page-turner all throughout. And it’s a Reese Witherspoon Book Club Pick!

2. Behind Every Lie by Christina McDonald

If you can’t remember it, how do you prove you didn’t do it?

Behind Every Lie starts off with a cinematic, heart-thudding, bloody scene: Eva was struck by lightning, they tell her, but that isn’t the worst of it – Eva might’ve been the one who killed her own mother, and the police are highly suspicious of her.

Determined to clear her name, Eva returns home for answers and soon realizes that someone doesn’t want her to know the truth.

The author’s writing is taut and focused, writing more for suspense and atmosphere than speed – still managing to provide a pacy, entertaining story while exploring dark subject matters (sexual assault, domestic abuse, the intricacies of memory…). She crafts her characters in a way it’s easy for us to become familiar with them and their inner psyches, then instantly bond with them.

Especially Eva, whose past trauma has made her struggle with self-trust. Her journey will make you feel excitement, intrigue and fury, all the way towards the end where everything is wrapped up in a clever conclusion, like a puzzle coming together with a startling click!

3. A Stranger In The House by Shari Lapena

He looks at her, concerned. “How do you feel?” She wants to say, Terrified. Instead, she says, with a faint smile, “Glad to be home.”

Karen and Tom Krupp are a happy couple living in a lovely home in upstate New York. One day, Tom returns home to find his wife has vanished—her car’s gone and it seems she left in a rush. She even left her purse—complete with phone and ID—behind.

There’s a knock on the door—the police tell him his wife has been admitted to a hospital after suffering a concussion from a car accident. And now she can’t remember…anything.

When Karen returns home with Tom, she realizes that someone’s been in her house. And the police won’t stop asking questions.

If you love pacy thrillers filled with twists and turns, you’ll highly enjoy A Stranger In The House. The writing is excellent and you won’t be able to put it down until the final, twisted reveal.

4. Little Secrets by Jennifer Hillier

The words I’d use to use to describe Little Secrets would be, “unputdownable” and “a page-turner”; Our protagonist Marin’s 4-year-old son just…vanished! What happens is a completely gripping story of domestic suspense that is elusively connected to this disappearance. There’s betrayal, affairs, and all the ingredients you usually find in an engaging, well-written domestic thriller.

Who took the child? What’s the motive behind the crime in question? I highly recommend Little Secrets, especially to fans of Sandie Jones and Robyn Harding.

5. The Perfect Son by Lauren North

“I cling to what I know. ONE—I’m in the hospital. I try to remember the rest, but it’s gone. How did I get here? How did it come to this?”

I was happy to find out that the author is a psychology student, and the by product of that definitely shows in The Perfect Son – a psychological thriller that grips you all the way through; ending with a well-crafted twist that’ll make you shudder.

The Perfect Son starts off with a bang – our protagonist, Tess, who finds herself on a hospital bed, knowing that her son is missing, and no one is listening to her! We’re given occasional short interviews at the hospital between a detective and the mother who’s desperate to find her son. What happened on the night of Jamie’s birthday? Who stabbed Tess that night? The answers to these are completely jaw-dropping.

6. A Stranger On The Beach by Michele Campbell

A woman whose marriage is falling apart turns to a mysterious stranger for comfort, and when her husband goes missing, things take a really. dark. turn. Two POVS. Both contradictory. Who’s lying? Who’s telling the truth? This was such a suspenseful journey with a dash of crazy!

7. The First Mistake by Sandie Jones

THE WIFE: For Alice, life has never been better. With her second husband, she has a successful business, two children, and a beautiful house.

HER HUSBAND: Alice knows that life could have been different if her first husband had lived, but Nathan’s arrival into her life gave her back the happiness she craved.

HER BEST FRIEND: Through the ups and downs of life, from celebratory nights out to comforting each other through loss, Alice knows that with her best friend Beth by her side, they can survive anything together. So when Nathan starts acting strangely, Alice turns to Beth for help. But soon, Alice begins to wonder whether her trust has been misplaced . . .

The first mistake could be her last.

This book is seriously making me question everyone around me. I’m suddenly becoming so suspicious of my family and friends…What are their real intentions?! With The First Mistake, you’ll be diving into an unsettling journey of paranoia.

When I say that this book will keep you on the edge of your seat until the end, that means that you’ll be racing through the final pages as if your life depends on them. You will not rest until you reach the VERY last gripping line. I’ve never looked forward to an epilogue as I have with this one.

I had a guess about what was going on, but I NEVER saw that twist coming. So many dizzying reveals, each one more gasp-worthy that the last. The characters are well-developped as they are thrusted into a sharply compelling plot.

Mark your calendars, readers! Sandie Jones will challenge your detective skills in this delicious psychological thriller.

8. My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing

“Our love story is simple. I met a gorgeous woman. We fell in love. We had kids. We moved to the suburbs. We told each other our biggest dreams, and our darkest secrets. And then we got bored.

We look like a normal couple. We’re your neighbors, the parents of your kid’s friend, the acquaintances you keep meaning to get dinner with.

We all have our secrets to keeping a marriage alive. Ours just happens to be getting away with murder.”

9. What Lies Between Us by John Marrs

Two women. One is keeping the other chained up in the attic. What the heck is happening? Expect drama, trauma, and unexpected twists and turns. This story is mental!

10. Between You And Me by Lisa Hall

One of the cleverest “domestic thriller” twists I’ve ever read! This is the kind of book where the less you know about it going in, the better. Basically, Between You And Me follows a married couple who are in an abusive relationship. Throughout the entire book, Sal stays at home, looks after their daughter Maggie and is constantly enduring Charlie’s frightening, physical and verbal abuse. Nothing is as it seems.

It’s not until you get to the “reveal”, that you realize, “ohhh, so that’s what’s been happening all along!” I was so quick to assume and my expectations were completely wrong.

Which of these sounds up your alley, fellow readers? Let me know!

Kindle Deals: Thriller/Mystery (UK)

New Kindle Deals!! These include titles from Karin Slaughter, Mary Kubica, Harlan Coben, and more! All these are only 0.99£ right now. Let me know which of these sound up your alley!

The Minders by John Marrs

Five ordinary people have been selected to have the country’s most classified information – lies, secrets – implanted inside their heads in in exchange for a clean slate, but not everyone should be trusted, especially when – in each of the five has a secret of their own they’ll do anything to protect…

Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter

A sister’s disappearance, and a husband’s murder – 25 years apart. Are they connected? The two surviving sisters reunite to find the truth and unearth ugly secrets.

Run Away by Harlan Coben

A father hasn’t seen his daughter in 6 months, and then he finds her…she’s not the girl he used to know. When he approaches her, she RUNS. He has no option but to follow her…down a dark, dangerous road.

The Good Girl by Mary Kubica

Mia Dennett can’t resist a one-night stand with the enigmatic stranger she meets in a bar, but going home with him might turn out to be her worst nightmare

Until You’re Mine by Samantha Hayes

You’re heavily pregnant with the baby you’ve wanted for so long. Your husband loves you. Your home is beautiful. And then Zoe steps into your life. She’s been hired to help you when the baby arrives; there’s something about your nanny that you don’t like. Or trust.

Into The Darkest Corner by Elizabeth Haynes

Cathy suffers from Obsessive Compulsive Behavior of locking/unlocking doors and windows of her apartment, and she’s a dark past behind. She thinks she’s safe, but someone’s out there watching

Kindle Daily Deals: Thriller/Mystery (US)

1. Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty (2.99$)

This book is being turned into a TV Series starring Nicole Kidman and Melissa McCarthy! Nine Perfect Strangers is a suspenseful mystery set at a boutique wellness resort where nine stressed city dwellers go in an attempt to get on a path to a better way of living. The spa resort is run by Director Masha (to be played by Kidman), a woman on a mission to reinvigorate their minds and bodies, and Melissa McCarthy will play Francis, one of the nine.

2. The Woods by Harlan Coben (1.99$)

Now on Netflix!! A new dead body might be linked to a prosecutor’s sister’s disappearance 25 years ago.

3. Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson (2.99$)

Melinda is an outcast, hated by everyone; she’d become isolated until she stopped talking altogether. She won’t stay silent anymore…about having been raped that night at the party by a guy who still attends her school.

4. My Best Friend’s Exorcism by Grady Hendrix (2.99$)

My Best Friend’s Exorcism is a supernatural thriller about a girl who starts acting strange after an evening of skinny dipping goes wrong. Her best friend starts investigating and reaches some bizzare discoveries.

Which one sounds up your alley, fellow bookworms?

Amazon First Reads: Thriller/Mystery (Aug. 2020)

Amazon First Reads for August are here!! A possibly-troubled five-year-old, a therapist haunted by an ugly past, a series of grisly Uni murders…if these sound up your alley, you might want to check out this month’s Amazon First Reads! AFR offers a list of titles that aren’t released yet; you can choose one of these titles for only 1.99$, but you can also get the e-book you want for free if you’re an Amazon Prime Member. Now, fellow readers, let’s browse through these picks…

*US title:

Girl Gone Mad by Avery Bishop

A therapist’s dark past comes back to haunt her (she and her friends had bullied the middle school “new girl” to a breaking point) when she realizes her friends start dying one by one 14 years later, and she starts seeing (or hallucinating?) a woman who looks exactly like the girl she’d bullied.

*UK title:

The Other Girl by C. D. Major

A 5-year-old girl was admitted to an asylum, and 15 years later, she survives the fire that destroys it. Is Edith mad, or are the “insane” stories she told as a child actually true?

*US/UK titles:

Deadly Waters by Dot Hutchison

Dead bodies of Uni students who had raped several women start showing up all over campus, and the main character – a journalism undergrad – is assumed to be behind all these killings.

Interference by Brad Parks

Interference is a sci-fi/medical thriller about a doctor who suffers from seizures and suddenly goes missing. Could this be related to his latest research?

Which of these sound(s) like something you’d like to read?

July Wrap Up (+ Top 5 Favorites)

Hello readers, how was your reading month? Discovered any new favorites authors or books? Today I’m sharing the books that I’ve read this month (shown above), and will be discussing my top favorite reads of the month!

⁃ Brother by Ania Ahlborn


“You look like an axe murderer, brother,” he said. “Like a goddamn horror movie, them elevators bleedin’ into the hotel lobby. Why don’t you get yourself cleaned up?”

19-year-old Michael Morrow isn’t like the rest of his family – a family that abducts and kills. This book is so twisted and will easily grab you from the very first chapter. It has a Gillian-Flynn-like atmosphere and it extraordinarily builds towards a clever, heart-wrenching plot twist, followed by an unforgettable, action-packed, haunting ending.

⁃ Still Missing by Chevy Stevens

No other book by this author compares to this one. A real estate agent is abducted in broad daylight, and the trauma that follows is horrifying to watch. Who is the real culprit behind the kidnapping? Get ready for a wicked reveal.

⁃ The Memory Watcher by Minka Kent

A mother moves next door to the woman who adopted her baby years ago and starts stalking her. If you love “WTF” twist endings that make you gasp, The Memory Watcher is for you!

⁃ The Summer I Died by Thomas C. Ryan

The Summer I Died is the kind of book you can never come back from. This is a gory horror-thriller where two best friends face their worst nightmare when they hear a woman screaming in the woods, and end up being held captive by a psychopath. That bloody, victorious, fury-filled ending is one you’ll never be able to get out of your head.

⁃ Blood Harvest by Sharon Bolton

This is my second favorite book by Bolton after Daisy In Chains! A boy keeps seeing a creepy-looking child wandering in the village where he lives; and there’s a therapist with a dark past, in addition to a third intriguing POV. That ending unsettled the heck out of me.

What about you? What was your favorite book that you read this month?

The 10 Best Psychological Thrillers About Twins

Who else is fascinated by “twin” stories? Some of my top favorite books are ones that revolve around twins, so I thought I’d share a list of “the best thrillers about twins” that I’ve had the chance to read. Some of these are out now, others are yet to be released, and I’ve made sure to include a couple of classic novels as well!

*Out Now

1. The Better Liar by Tanen Jones

“If I tell you how it happened, maybe you’ll remember me as well.”

The Better Liar is a quick, clever, mind-bending thriller about a young woman who must reunite with her twin sister and claim their joint inheritance, only when she arrives at her apartment, she finds her sister…dead.

The book starts off with this main perturbation, continues with slow-building suspense, leading all the way up to the cuckoo ending. That’s where the author ratchets up the suspense by using emotionally-charged aspects of the sisters’ fascinating backgrounds and then turns it into twisty bombshells when you least expect them..

The story ventures into a world that explores a complex side of twin sisterhood, and the meticulously explained topic of maternal drivehow is “maternal instinct” cultivated? All of this is narrated through the POV of the two sisters – two complex, fully-rounded characters, taking us to their awful, harrowing past. This was definitely a powerful debut thriller.

2. Beautiful Lies by Jessica Warman

Oh, this one I’d definitely recommend. Beautiful Lies is the first, original book that introduced me to the mesmerizing world of identical twins: a very rare kind of identical twins, named “monochorionic monoamniotic twins”. I won’t spoil it for you, but let me tell you, the way these types of twins are connected, will freak you out! So when Rachel’s twin sister goes missing, she instantly knows something’s very wrong, and her sister is in serious danger.

There were some splendidly-described WTF creepy moments, and some gasp-worthy twists that shock you/leave you a bit confused – in a good way, if that makes sense. I loved the backstories of both twins when they were orphans, and the ending was suspenseful and gripping, with a final line that made me think, “wow, how is it possible that twins could be connected like THAT?”

3. The Babysitter by Nancy Bush

There are 7-year-old twins and a masked killer named “The Babysitter Stalkerstabbing babysitters in Nancy Bush’s The Babysitter. Eighteen years later, the killer strikes again.

Oh how how completely engrossed I was by the writing and addictive plotline of this book. The author leaves a few clues all throughout the book but you can never piece them together until the perfectly wicked reveal in the very last paragraph. The clues include occasional passages featuring the killer’s point of view, which are absolutely chilling.

There are three mysteries that are unraveled here:

Who attacked Emma 18 years ago while she babysat the Ryerson twins?

– How is this former attack connected to the current ones?

– Why was Jamie, the victim’s sister, summoned to her childhood home in the first place? (—> This one shocked me the most).

This book is so well-executed, it wows the reader constantly, doesn’t try to be something it’s not, reads like a movie, and oh, this would make one heck of a Halloween read!

4. Guilt by Amanda Robson

Robson writes words that pierce right through you in Guilt. Each one of her characters has such an interesting set of characteristics that wholly differentiate them from the other; we’re kept on edge as each of the twin sisters take turns to tell the story from their point of view. One sister is murdered. The other is awaiting trial.

One thing you should be sure you’ll be getting from this author’s books is extremely well-plotted suspense, which increase insanely during the courtroom scenes in the last chapters.

As evil as this story was -mostly due to a certain heavy subject matter, this book was really about the sinister impact that tragedy can have on people, in addition to the intricate bond of sisterhood. I’m definitely curious to see what this author writes next.

5. Identical by Ellen Hopkins

In Identical by Ellen Hopkins, Kaeleigh and Raeanne are identical twins. Behind the facade, each sister has a dark secret that’s not meant to be kept, and that’s where their differences begin. Kaeleigh is adored by her father and neglected by her absent mother. Raeanne, however, thinks their father is playing a game of favorites – and she is losing.

It soon becomes clear that neither sister can handle the kept secret alone, and one sister must step up to save the other, but the question is—who?

This book is…different. It reads in verse, and alternates between the POV of each twin. Through the entire book, we’re aware of the fact that both sisters are harboring an ugly secret that they can’t bring themselves to divulge, all while describing the disturbed dynamics of their unsettled family state. The ending gains momentum and increases suspense while building up towards the “secret”, which turns out to be quite shocking!

*Coming Out This Summer/Fall:

6. The Wicked Sister by Karen Dionne (Aug. 4th)

“…with a clarity that is almost frightening, suddenly, I remember everything.”

This is one of my top 10 favorite books this year so far, and boy was I mesmerized by this sinister, flawless and terrifying work of psychological suspense.

In The Wicked Sister, 26-year-old Rachel had spent fifteen years in a psychiatric ward for thinking she killed her mother with a rifle when she was 11 years old, until…she stumbles upon new information that makes her question everything she thought she knew: had she really been living a lie for more than a decade?

Buckle up readers, and get ready to be transported into Rachel’s horrifying story, taking place in her late parents’ wilderness lodge (which I thought was the perfect setting for this crime thriller), filled with wicked memories as well as some mesmerizing aspects – including Rachel’s strange connection to the the wilderness. That’s where I applaud the author for using unusually beautiful elements that entirely bend the rules of an average psychological thriller.

This book studies psychopathy and trauma in a very layered way, and you feel compelled to root for the protagonist and follow her journey with the heart-pounding question, “Will Rachel survive?” The writing is strong and modest and brims with the most engaging mysteries…

What’s the mystery behind Rachel’s strange two-week disappearance?

What secrets motivated her wildlife biologist parents’ strange decision to move far away from civilization?

Rachel is not an easily-forgettable character and nor is her story. Mark your calendars fellow readers, August 4th!

7. The Girl In The Mirror by Rose Carlyle

Think of The Girl In The Mirror as a twisted version of The Last Mrs Parrish if the two female leads in it were twins, while Something In The Water lies in the background; there’s indeed “something” lying at the bottom of the ocean that’s causing problems for our main protagonist.

Psychopathy, murder, identical twins with the “most extreme case of mirroring the doctors had ever seen”? That‘s certainly not an easy plot to concoct for a debut! Yes, you might not tell these twins apart but, there are some slight differences that might…creep you out!

Now, what to expect from this debut? “Money” is the main factor that drives this book: a particular inheritance, to be specific. The story, which takes place on a yacht in the first quarter, builds up slowly at first while featuring the twins’ backstories, moving towards a really great “twist”. Afterwards, we’re offered an ending where the tension and the suspense are ratcheted up: this was my favorite part.

Did this book provide entertainment? Did it provide insight? Was it a well-executed novel for a debut? The Girl In The Mirror checks all those boxes.

*Classics:

8. Stranger With My Face by Lois Duncan

”Are you the one with my face?” I whispered.

“I came first.” She answered with a little laugh. “It’s you who has my face.”

I can see why this book was such a big hit back in the early 90’s. It’s original, scary, and so wicked! There are stunningly-executed paranormal scenes and a gorgeous setting – a house perched on a cliff.

Stranger With My Face is a suspense thriller that follows 17-year-old Laurie Stratton whose world is rocked by the arrival of this new mysterious stranger into her life…

Laurie was at home, but her boyfriend swears he saw her on the beach with another guy. Her family insists they see her coming and going when she’s been out of the house for hours. Who–or what–is taking over Laurie’s life?

9. Flowers In The Attic by V. C. Andrews

This is what survival looks like! I’m never going to get over the evil in this book. I mean…that final reveal? It was shocking. Heart-wrenching. BUT, I loved how, during the ending, the author still made sure to emphasize the uplifting side to this story, so then you kind of find yourself smiling once you reach the final line.

After their father’s death, four children (a brother and sister and two twins) are locked up in the attic of their evil grandmother’s house, and throughout the entire book, we get to see these kids grow, take care of one another, endeavor to understand their sexualities and desires, and endure the torment that is inflicted on them.

First of all, the writing is close to perfection. Heck, it is perfect! So perfect I didn’t want the book to end. The story and actions of our characters are portrayed so realistically that you feel like you’re reading a true story. The tight bond between the twins and their elder brother and sister, the way they stick for each other, the cleverness of the 12-year-old girl, the realistic and chilling behavior of the characters…it’s all so captivating. And boy am I excited to read the next book in the series (would you guys recommend continuing with the series?)

10. The Other by Thomas Tryon

“Twins? With different birthdays? How unusual.”

Well, wasn’t this a creepy gem! If someone asked me about the creepiest book I’ve ever read, The Other would be the answer. No hesitation. I mean, sure, the pacing wasn’t perfect but, this book definitely wins the best, most disturbing twists I’ve ever read, and more importantly, Thomas Tryon just knew how to create this unsettling sense of unease inside of me through his words.

Without spoiling anything away, if you’re looking for a classic, creepy (non-supernatural) horror novel about twins, The Other is for you. So many sections in this book could’ve been edited out but surprisingly, now that I know what’s been going on all along, I also feel like I need to re-read the book to pick up clues that I must’ve missed. Honestly, apart from the slightly-bizzare execution, this was absolutely genius.

What do you think of this list, folks? Any other “twin” books you’d like to recommend?

5 Most Terrifying Thrillers About Mental Illness

Anyone else find books that revolve around mental illness particularly intriguing? In today’s post, I’m listing my top favorite thrillers (that absolutely *terrified* me) where the protagonist(s) deals with a serious psychological condition. If you have any book suggestions you think should be added to the list, please let me know!

1. Into The Darkest Corner by Elizabeth Haynes

“It’s like watching a horror movie over and over again, without ever becoming immune to the terror.”

This is a dark psychological thriller that meticulously explores what it’s like to live with Obsessive Compulsive Behavior, and suffer through domestic abuse in a frighteningly realistic way. There’s also a really good backstory that explains where our protagonist’s psychological condition stems from.

If you’re looking to understand this illness, and/or usually gravitate to plots with the theme of obsessive love, Into The Darkest Corner is definitely the book for you. A bit towards the ending, there’s a terrific action-packed scene where our protagonist must escape the perpetrator; that particular scene is so, incredibly entertaining!

2. Lock Me In by Kate Simants

“You want to know fear? Imagine someone there, every day when you wake. Imagine knowing, without even opening your eyes, that someone is watching you.”

This was one heck of a debut with plenty of twists, and there are massive final revelations that are truly disturbing.

In Lock Me In, Simants writes an edge-of-your-seat thriller where a young girl named Ellie suffers from Dissociative Identity Disorder; she deals with what she calls “fugues”, and there’s a mysterious disappearance that she thinks she’s responsible for. We follow two POVs (Ellie + the detective) and Ellie’s sessions with her psychotherapist. And nothing is as it seems.

This psychological condition was portrayed in such a chilling, believable way in this book and I was completely engrossed by the originality and insightfulness that were provided.

3. The Eighth Girl by Maxine Mei-Fung Chung

This was written by a real-life psychotherapist! Dissociative Identity Disorder is the heart of this book and in this book, we get to explore it through the eyes of a psychotherapist and patient with dark backstories. The patient, Alexa, soon becomes a trigger for her psychotherapist, Daniel.

The Eighth Girl also delves into the topics of abuse, trauma, memory and in addition to major aspects of suspense, which is ratcheted up during the last pages, there’s a huge twist that will make you gasp!

4. The Woman In The Window by A. J. Finn

Anna Fox lives alone, a recluse in her New York City home, unable to venture outside. She spends her day drinking wine (maybe too much), watching old movies, recalling happier times . . . and spying on her neighbors.

Then the Russells move into the house across the way: a father, a mother and their teenage son. The perfect family. But when Anna, gazing out her window one night, witnesses a murder, her world begins to crumble. Was what she saw real? Or did she imagine it?

The Woman In The Window is an enjoyable whodunnit mystery where the main character suffers from agoraphobia. The writing is different, and a bit slow during the first half, but it eventually picks up afterwards and leads up to a satisfactory ending. What’s most fascinating about this book is how the author navigated the protagonist’s condition in a such a raw way!

5. Cracked by Louise McCreesh

Readers are pulled deep into the intertwined webs of seven patients’ dark secrets in Louise McCreesh’s debut, Cracked, which explores multiples mental illnesses.

What mainly keeps the reader eager to turn the pages in this book is the mystery of main character Jenny’s secret from her darkest days as a patient in Hillside psychiatric hospital 9 years ago. The story goes back and forth between the past, which takes place at the hospital, and the present, where our protagonist is on edge after her former psychiatrist is brutally murdered.

So now, she must reunite with her former roommates to find out who the killer might be and why is he/she sending them threatening messages, warning them to keep quiet. There are many twists and turns here, and through protagonist Jenny’s point of view, we understand that everyone has a secret, and given the various mental illnesses which our characters suffer from (schizophrenia, etc), their accounts of what had been happening at the hospital tend to be unreliable, making it harder to know who to trust.

Are you guys familiar with the titles on this list? Any other ones nyou’d like to add?