If you’re anything like me, summer equals three blissful months of checking things off my never-ending reading list. Picture this: You’re sitting on a beach or by the pool devouring the latest, hottest psychological thriller and holding a nice chilled glass of rosé, not a care in the world. If that isn’t a description of true bliss, I don’t know what is.
As a true crime fanatic, I usually don’t deviate from the psych thriller genre so I’ve naturally read A LOT of them. Here are five must-read thrillers to add to your summer reading list in no particular order:
Into the Darkest Corner by Elizabeth Haynes: I ordered a mass market paperback on Amazon for $7.99 and it was a great purchase! This book follows Cathy Bailey, an OCD-ridden victim of sexual and physical abuse (be warned that it does get graphic in some areas) as she fights to rise above past traumas caused by her ex-boyfriend. When Cathy learns that he’s out of jail after serving three years for abuse, she starts seeing him everywhere. Is that him following her to work? Has he been in her apartment? Read this classic British psych thriller to find out!
Sometimes I Lie by Alice Feeney: I think I read this one in the span of two airplane trips—on the way to and on the way back from Miami. Protagonist Amber Reynolds is in a coma as she takes us through her journey of how she ended up in the hospital unable to move or speak. She can hear and understand the conversations around her, but she’s trapped in her own body and can’t respond. Did someone try to kill her? Was it her husband Paul? Why is he spending so much time with her sister? I couldn’t believe the twists and turns throughout this book, and I’m pretty sure I audibly gasped mid-flight as I was nearing the end.
Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell: I tore through Jewell’s novel quicker than any book I’ve read in years. I truly couldn’t put it down. Everything from the character development, to the dialogue, to the setting had me wanting more. When Laurel Mack’s daughter teenage Ellie disappeared, her life fell apart. As a divorcée of seven years, Laurel was surprised when she met a charming man in a cafe who had also been married before and had a daughter of his own. When she finally meets his daughter, Poppy, for the first time, she can’t believe the resemblance to Ellie. The twists in this one were shocking and at times, graphic, but Jewell weaved such a classic psychological thriller that I’m looking forward to reading the rest of her books ASAP. The Brits just know how to do it ya’ll.
The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides: This was my Book of the Month pick in January or February and boy am I glad because I was totally freaked out and on edge (in the best way) for the entire read… like pick-my-mouth-up-off-the-floor level shook. Alicia Berenson is an artist married to a famous fashion photographer, Gabriel. She lives in a posh London neighborhood and seemingly has a wonderful life with her loving husband. But one night, Gabriel gets home from work and Alicia shoots him five times in the face at point-blank range and then never speaks another word again. The story of the mysterious murder spreads and demand for Alica’s art increases dramatically. Psychotherapist Theo Faber is determined to get Alicia to talk again. Does he? What does he uncover about the murder?
One of Us is Lying by Karen McManus: Okay, don’t make fun but I enjoy a YA read from time-to-time if I want something slightly lighter but still engrossing, and Karen McManus is a genius at it. I even emailed her and asked her about writing a book and she responded! What a nice person. Anyway, this book is Pretty Little Liars-meets-murder and it follows a group of five high-school friends who are all in detention for one reason or another when one of their classmates suddenly dies after drinking a cup of water. So what happened? The book covers all the characters and their families seamlessly while dropping juicy nuggets about the characters’ social lives that I obviously ate right up. I can’t recommend this one enough, especially if you’re in the mood for a high school-esque drama.
Let me know if you decide to read any of the above five books and if so, let me know how you like them! Happy reading from one Hunt a Killer/True Crime lover to the another!