The Best Thriller Books That Will Leave You Speechless

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There are a few things that are cemented as a part of my identity, some good, some not so much: my horrible stomach, having one of the strongest Chicago accents people have ever heard, how many times I’ve watched Dance Moms, and absolutely being obsessed with anything scary.

I was a fan of thrillers and true crime far before they were trendy to love. I basically walked out of the womb concerned about what really happened to JonBenét Ramsey, and I was watching scary movies when the appropriate thing would have been to stick to Toy Story. I also have always loved to read, which led to a lifetime of an obvious, beautiful collision of my interests: psychological thriller books.

I started 2021 at my parent’s home for three weeks, which encouraged me to toss Netflix aside and make my Kindle my best friend. I’ve gotten into a groove and read a lot of books so far this year, some of which title’s I can’t even remember, and others that have left me wishing I could experience them again from the start. Ready to find your next favorite book? These are at the top of my list, and I promise none of them will disappoint you





Aimee Molloy

Goodnight Beautiful

I read this on recommendation of our lovely Social Media Editor, and it is by far one of the most unique books I’ve ever read.

Two newlyweds, Sam and Annie, leave New York City to settle in Sam’s upstate hometown. While Sam spends his days as a psychotherapist treating patients in his home office, Annie’s days are far less busy, and it just so happens all of Sam’s sessions can be heard through the vent upstairs. My jaw dropped to the floor not once, but twice while I was reading this—I promise, the twists won’t even be on your radar.

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Colleen Hoover

Verity

Lowen Ashleigh is a struggling writer when she gets the offer of a lifetime: to ghost write the final books of best-selling author Verity Crawford’s most famous series, which she’s unable to finish after being in an accident. Verity’s husband encourages Lowen to come stay at their home to go through Verity’s office and notes on ideas for the rest of the series—and while she’s there, she finds more than she bargained for.

This is one of my top three favorite books of all time. Not only do the characters suck you in from the start, but the final pages leave you completely speechless. This was a “finished in 24 hours” book for me, and I wish I could experience it again from the beginning 10 more times.

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Romy Hausmann

Dear Child

Amazon describes this book as “Gone Girl” meets “Room,” and I couldn’t have said it better myself.

A woman held captive in a shack in the woods finally escapes, but when she claims to be Lena, who had disappeared 14 years before, her family swears it isn’t really her. It’s full of twists, suspense, and an original plot that leaves you thinking far after you’re done.

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B. A. Paris

Bring Me Back

I went through a phase of reading all of B.A. Paris’ books after finishing “Behind Closed Doors” and this was by far my favorite of her lot.

Finn and Layla are young and in love; when on a road trip, Finn pulls over to a gas station only to find Layla missing when he gets back to the car. Ten years later he’s engaged to her sister, Ellen, and people aren’t so sure the story he told the police about Layla’s disappearance is true.

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Amy Gentry

Good as Gone

In the middle of the night, 13-year-old Julie was kidnapped from her bedroom while her sister watched from the closet. Eight years later, Julie shows up at their door, but her family begin to see holes in her story that make them wonder what really happened to her that night.

If you want a good ole’ kidnapping story, this one is for you.

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Elizabeth Haynes

Into the Darkest Corner

Catherine is enjoying her single life when she meets charismatic, successful Lee. While their relationship starts out passionate, it turns into obsession quickly, and Catherine ends up being completely isolated from her former life.

Prior to reading this I had never heard of it, and it was one of the most captivating books I’ve ever read.

Trigger warning: The plot of this book is about domestic abuse.

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B. A. Paris

The Dilemma

I wasn’t lying when I said I went through a B.A. Paris phase, and I don’t regret it one bit. This book is unique in that the entirety of it happens within the same day, which made it completely un-put-downable for me.

It’s Livia’s 40th birthday party, and her daughter Marnie, who’s studying abroad, isn’t going to make it to the party Livia has been looking forward to for years. When her husband learns terrible news that potentially impacts Marnie, the rest of the day is filled with suspense as he grapples with whether or not he should let Livia enjoy her big day or warn her about Marnie.

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Shari Lapena

The End of Her

Stephanie and Patrick are living a suburban life with their twin babies when a woman from Patrick’s past shows up, making accusations that change everything for Stephanie.

This book pulled me in from the start and kept me engaged until the very last page. It will leave you wondering how well you can really know someone—even your spouse.

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Adrian McKinty

The Chain

When a mother is targeted by a group of masterminds, she finds out she has to commit a crime, or risk never seeing her daughter again.

This book was the winner of countless awards, and rightfully so: it’s one of the most unique thriller stories you’ll ever encounter, and keeps you on the edge of your seat the entire time.

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