If you’re looking for a new book to devour, then look no further than our list of 5 thriller books that will keep you gripped. We asked Beth’s Book Club member Helen to share her must-read thriller books list.
“Gripping… unputdownable… perfect for fans of The Girl on the Train…” This description tends to be the selling point for most of my favourite reads; thriller books. There are so many incredible books in this genre, whether psychological, domestic, police procedural, crime or mystery. I’ve put together a selection of my favourite thriller books that will have you hooked.
5 Thriller Books You Won’t Want to Put Down
Mark Edwards writes some of the best domestic thriller books I’ve ever read. The Magpies was the first of his books I picked up, and after finishing it, I raced through all of his others.Synopsis: Jamie and Kirsty move into their first home together and everything seems perfect – they’re madly in love and full of plans for the future. They meet their neighbours, including the Newtons who live in the flat below, and they all seem lovely. However, while everything is going well at first, strange things start happening, and they find themselves the target in what is fast becoming a nightmare.Thoughts: This book goes from creepy to heartbreaking and back again, and I loved it. It js really well written and I raced through it – I couldn’t put it down. The suspense and tension are built brilliantly, and as there are so few characters in it, you find yourself being pulled in and completely engaged in the story very quickly.There are two more books in the Magpies series – A Murder of Magpies and Last of the Magpies – both are short stories (100 pages or so) and are also brilliant thriller books.
There are currently four thriller books in the D.I. Fawley series: Close To Home, In The Dark, No Way Out and All The Rage. The books are police procedural thrillers filled with twists and turns. I love Hunter’s writing style, and I find the format of the books enjoyable – with texts, tweets, chat rooms and certificates included – it gives another layer to the story.
I only discovered John Marrs at the end of last year but I absolutely fell in love with his writing. Her Last Move is one of the best thriller books I’ve read.Synopsis: Struggling to balance her personal and professional life, young DS Becca Vincent has landed the biggest case of her career – and she knows that it will make or break her. But how can she identify one face in a sea of thousands? With the help of Police Super Recogniser Joe Russell, she strives to catch a glimpse of the elusive murderer, but he’s watching her every move.Time is not on their side. The body count is rising, and the attacks are striking closer and closer to home. Can Becca and Joe uncover the connection between the murders before the killer strikes the last name from his list?Thoughts: This book was intense. I absolutely love crime thriller books, but I don’t usually get too creeped out by them. This one however, really got me! I made the mistake of reading it at night when I was alone and my son had gone to bed, and I was absolutely terrified!I warmed to the characters immediately, especially Joe. There are a LOT of twists in this, there were a couple of moments where I felt there were maybe a few too many twists, but it didn’t take away from my enjoyment of the story. I thought the ending was very bold, but satisfying, and parts of the story were utterly heartbreaking.Read next: 42 Books to Read in Self-isolation Split by Genre
C.L. Taylor is one of my all-time favourite thriller authors. She’s written several psychological thriller books including The Lie and The Missing. Sleep was released last year, and I devoured it in a couple of days…Synopsis: All Anna wants is to be able to sleep. But crushing insomnia, terrifying night terrors and memories of that terrible night are making it impossible. After being involved in a tragic accident, Anna takes a job at a hotel on the remote Scottish island of Rum, but when seven guests join her, what started as a retreat from the world turns into a deadly nightmare. Each of the guests have a secret, but one of them is lying – about who they are and why they’re on the island. There’s a murderer staying in the Bay View hotel, and they’ve set their sights on Anna.Thoughts: The story is told from the POV of several different characters, mainly Anna, who is struggling with guilt-induced insomnia following a tragic accident. The story also jumps back to those people Anna left behind, including her ex-boyfriend. It’s an interesting mix of characters, though there were a LOT of characters so I had a few moments where I was flicking back through the pages to confirm who someone was. I understand why the story moved between the guests at the hotel and the other characters, as well as an unknown character, but I think it would have felt more claustrophobic and suspenseful if the story had stayed just with the characters in the hotel. I found the big reveal a little anti-climactic as I’d kind of worked out who I thought might be the murderer, but not the connection or motive. The last chapter however had an excellent twist, and gave the story a very satisfying end.
Lucy Clarke’s thriller books always stand out to me, they’re always so well researched and intriguing, with stories set all around the world. You Let Me In was the first of her books I read and I absolutely loved it…Synopsis: Elle is a writer whose debut novel became a bestseller. She lives in Cornwall, near to her sister, in a beautiful house. While away on a writers retreat, she rents out her house on Airbnb and when she returns, everything feels different. Elle is struggling with her second book, and doubt and paranoia start to creep in. Her house, which was previously her safe haven, suddenly feels sinister and mysterious.Thoughts: I thought this book was brilliantly written, and there were plenty of red herrings that kept me guessing. I found Elle really relatable as a character, and the writing is so beautifully descriptive, particularly about the location of the house, I could picture it perfectly.What are you favourite thriller books?Join Beth’s Book Club! A free, popular online book club.Read next: 5 Empowering Books by Female AuthorsPin 5 Thriller Books That Will Keep You Gripped for later