As we approach the end of summer and start to get ready for the best season of the year (if you ask me), it’s the perfect time to add some thriller books to your To-Be-Read (TBR) list. I’m just about ready to curl up on the couch with a cup of hot apple cider, my coziest blanket, my favorite B&BW works fall scented candle crackling in the background (“Leaves,” obviously), and a book I can’t put down. Whether reading about supernatural creatures is your thing, or you’re like me and would rather investigate a murder and bring a heinous killer to justice, there’s something for everyone available this year.
Some of our favorite authors, as well as some new faces, are delivering us thriller books just in time for the fall. You may even find that a sequel to one of your previous favorites has come out. There’s no better way to start spooky season than with a book, or two, that will keep you up all night.
Read on for 14 thriller books that will make you want to hit “add to cart” before the first leaf can change.
From the best selling author that brought you Final Girls and Survive the Night comes the most iconic thriller of the summer, The House Across the Lake. Casey Fletcher is a retired, widowed actress who retreats to her family’s Vermont lake house to escape from the public eye. Her favorite form of entertainment is cozying up with a bottle of booze and watching her neighbors, Katherine and Tom Royce, across the lake. After striking up a friendship with Katherine, Casey quickly discovers that things are not as good as they seem in the Royce household. After Katherine suddenly vanishes, Casey takes it upon herself to figure out what happened and, in doing so, uncovers more than she ever bargained for about her neighbors.
Release date: June 21, 2022
New York Times best-selling thriller author, Ruth Ware, strikes again with The It Girl. April Clark-Cliveden is the quintessential “It Girl” at Oxford and quickly develops a sophisticated friend group that includes Hannah, Will, Hugh, Ryan, and Emily. By the end of the group’s second semester at Oxford, April is found dead and John Neville, a former Oxford patrolman, is convicted of the crime. A decade later, as Hannah and Will are welcoming their new child and Neville has passed away in prison, new evidence emerges that may prove him to be innocent. Now left with more questions than answers, Hannah finds herself trying to figure out who stole April from her world all those years ago. This is the “It” book of the year, and one you’ll need to get your hands on as soon as possible.
Release date: July 12, 2022
When Paris Peralta is found bloody and holding a razor in front of her dead celebrity husband’s body, she knows she’ll be charged with his murder. This isn’t her biggest concern at the time, though. She is more fixated on someone from her past recognizing her and uncovering the secrets she spent so many years burying. When she’s released from prison for a similar murder that occurred 20 years earlier, Ruby Reyes aims to do just that: expose Paris and force her to confront her dim past.
Release date: July 19, 2022
The last time I read a novel from the point of view of a serial killer’s daughter (A Flicker in the Dark), I was not disappointed. That’s why I’m thrilled to get my hands on Sarah Gailey’s newest book, Just Like Home. When Vera is called home by her mother, she reluctantly obliges, not particularly looking forward to being back in the home she used to share with her serial killer father. When she arrives, she’s met with more than her memories; an unfamiliar artist has moved into their guest house. When ominous notes start showing up around their home in her father’s handwriting, she has no one else to blame but the artist. Vera must see for herself all of the secrets hidden in the foundation of her childhood home.
Release date: July 19, 2022
We can’t wait to get our hands on this best-selling author’s latest work. Set in the picturesque North Carolina mountain town of Cutter’s Pass, Abigail Lovett finds herself working as manager of the upscale resort, the Passage Inn, and making a home in the small town. She’s never fully felt accepted by the locals of Cutter’s Pass, though. When a string of disappearances occur on the Appalachian trail and Abigail uncovers some incriminating evidence that may just solve the case, she starts to find out why the townsfolk have always kept her at arm’s length.
Release date: July 26, 2022
Reese Witherspoon told us to read McAllister’s latest thriller novel, and we must listen to the queen of reading. Here’s the POV: You’re up late waiting for your teenage son to come home. As you’re looking out your window, you see him with a stranger before watching your son murder this person in cold blood. Your son is taken into custody, and you must go to bed having witnessed every parent’s worst nightmare. When you wake up in the morning, you realize it’s actually the day before the murder. The next time you wake up, it's the day before that. As you continue to wake up earlier and earlier in the past, you realize that somewhere in the past is the answer to who your son murdered and why, and it’s up to you to uncover the answers.
Release date: Aug. 2, 2022
Emma Makepeace has joined the ranks of a shady organization known only as “The Agency.” Her latest assignment? Save an innocent man from the Russian government. First, she needs to find him, and as it turns out, the man, Michael Primalov, doesn’t want her help. She quickly realizes that the Russian government has a leg up on her and has spies and cameras watching for their every move. Emma must fight not only the Russian government, but also Primalov’s resistance and complete her mission. We know Alias Emma will be an action thriller for the ages.
Release date: Aug. 2, 2022
After being forced to return to her hometown with her daughter, Marjorie, Ava Montgomery quickly remembers why she left. She’s hit with the memories of when Adam Albricht’s body was discovered in a sinister forest 14 years before. After meeting up with her high school friend group, Ava finds that they’ve all grown into successful lives of fame and fortune. Not long after Majorie becomes obsessed with the mysterious and rumored supernatural woods, another body of a missing child is found in the forest. When a knife and a threatening message is left on Ava’s doorstep, she begins to question what she believes to be true about the town, the forest, and her friend group. She is forced to confront her fears of the woods when her daughter is threatened to become the next victim.
Release date: Aug. 2, 2022
As the standalone sequel to Lisa Jewell’s The Family Upstairs, readers have the option to enjoy it separately or in conjunction with its harrowing predecessor. When inspector Samuel Owusu discovers bones at a crime scene, he is shocked to learn they belong to the victim of a cold case where three victims were found dead. When Rachel Rimmer’s husband is discovered dead in his French home, Rachel is forced to answer questions about his past that she would rather not relive. After a tragedy that led Lisa Lamb to flee London, she is finally returning home. Just as she is settling back into a calm life, her brother sets out to find a man from their shared past she would rather forget. See how the three mysterious events are connected as each party seeks to find answers.
Release date: Aug. 9, 2022
Hey Crime Junkies, this one’s for you. Anyone interested in true crime has (probably religiously) listened to the Crime Junkie podcast. The podcast’s beloved host, Ashley Flowers, is coming out with her first novel in August of this year. Prominent journalist Margot Davies must return to her hometown of Wakarusa, IN after several years of trying to forget its troubling past. When Margot was just 6 years old, her next door neighbor, January, went missing and was found dead shortly after. Her murder was never solved and her killer never brought to justice. When Margot returns to find a 5-year-old from the next town over, Natalie Clark, has gone missing 20 years after January under eerily similar circumstances, she wonders if the cases could be connected. She vows to solve the decades-old cold case and find Natalie. When she starts asking questions though, she’s met with much more hostility and resistance from the townspeople than she could have imagined.
Release date: Aug. 16, 2022
As a young college student in upstate New York, Shay Evans and her friend Laurel find themselves being engulfed into a cult under the leadership of a charismatic man. They quickly realize the dangerous undertones of the cult’s practices and are the only two able to separate themselves from its grips. Years later, after moving to a small Texas town, Shay hears of the death of her dear friend Laurel from her favorite true crime podcast and begins to wonder if the past is truly behind her. With the help of the podcast host, Shay sets out to uncover what happened to her friend. Little does she know that she will be met with the same temptations she faced all those years before. She soon realizes that finding justice may be harder than she could have imagined and has to ask herself how far she is willing to go for the truth.
Release date: Aug. 16, 2022
The queen of the thriller genre, Karin Slaughter, is back again in August to deliver us a sequel to the stirring Pieces of Her. With her unmatched use of imagery, unique storytelling abilities, and graphic attention to detail, we know Slaughter will have us at the edge of our seats with this one. The story follows US Marshall Andrea Oliver as she aims to solve a cold case linked to her father’s past. When pretty and popular Emily Vaghn went missing on what should have been the best night of her high school career 40 years ago, it shook this small Delaware town to its core. It turns out Emily has quite the skeleton in her closet, and it’s Oliver’s job to figure out what Emily was hiding and bring her killer to justice, or else.
Release date: Aug. 23, 2022
This is for all lovers of Morbid: A True Crime Podcast. If you haven’t heard yet, podcast cohost, top notch researcher, autopsy technician, and super mom Alaina Urquhart is releasing her debut novel this September. Set in the ever-moody and hauntingly beautiful city of New Orleans, The Butcher and the Wren tells the story of a meticulous serial killer and the distinguished forensic pathologist, Dr. Wren Muller, set out to stop him. After researching countless horrific true crime cases over the last several years, we have no doubt Urquhart will knock it out of the park with this one. This is the perfect book to pick up if you want to “Keep it weird.”
Release date: Sept. 13, 2022
Siaorse Island is a small town plagued in superstition, tradition, folklore, and a bit of the supernatural. The eerie and mystical atmosphere is heightened the night before Emery Blackwood’s graduation when her best friend Lily is found dead on her boyfriend’s land and he becomes the prime suspect in her murder. Since then, despite the town believing August Salt to be responsible for the murder, the case has yet to be closed and Emery has been stuck in her hometown living in the aftermath of the horrific night. When August Salt returns home after years of being away, he is met with hostility and overcome with emotions when it comes to seeing Emery. Emery soon finds out there may be more than meets the eye when it comes to Lily’s death, including generations-long secrets and betrayals.
Release date: Sept. 27, 2022