If you talk to anyone in the publishing industry right now, they’ll tell you that what is hot is the psychological thriller (sometimes called “domestic noir”). Everyone’s looking for the next Gone Girl or The Girl on the Train. So I have included a couple that fall into this category that I’ve enjoyed recently. Here are five books I’ve enjoyed recently that you might enjoy too:
The Ruin – this is the debut novel of Australian/Irish writer Dervla McTiernan, and it’s a cracker. It starts with a mysterious death from 20 years ago (a young mother overdosing on heroin who had never taken the drug before) and then explores a mysterious death from the present day. Are the two deaths connected? Is everyone who they seem to be? Mysterious, compelling, full of characters you’re not sure whether you trust or not … this has all the makings of a great crime novel and I can’t wait to see what she writes next.
The Woman in the Window – a different take on a much-beloved thriller idea: the person stuck at home who witnesses a murder from their Rear Window. The one stuck at home in this case is Anna Fox, an agoraphobe who has become separate from her loved ones and has nothing to do but observe the neighbours, because leaving the house is unthinkable. But Anna’s reliability comes into question and the lives of the neighbours become increasingly complex. This is a fabulously fast-paced fable sprinkled through with references to lots of classic movies and a twist you might not see coming. By A.J. Finn.
Body Surfing – My husband picked this up for me at Vinnies. It’s not one of Anita Shreve’s newer works, nor is it a thriller, but I found it as compelling and fresh as something busting the bestseller lists. Sydney has already been divorced once and married once, and as a psychology student you think she’s got a pretty good take on the motivations of everyone around her. That’s what she seems to think, as well. But there’s a twist in this seemingly benign novel that is shocking and telling and I found it clever and heartbreaking. A good combination. I was so sad to hear that this author had died last week. It’s a great loss to literature.
The Secrets She Keeps – Michael Robotham. The author doesn’t disappoint with his latest thriller about two woman with big secrets and the way their lives interweave. This is a hard one to talk about because there are big twists, but it involves two women who are pregnant and due around the same time: one seems to have it all, one seems to have not much. But not all is as it seems in Robotham books.
The Dark Lake – Sarah Bailey. Full disclosure: I know Sarah Bailey and I read an early version of this book. But it is still a great thriller about a small-town (woman) cop who investigates the death of a woman she once called a friend. But it wasn’t just the killer with secrets: the victim of this crime seems to have had a life that didn’t quite fit in with her perfect image, either. From it’s breathtaking opening scene to its heart-stopping conclusion, this is another great Aussie thriller.
PS – Wondering why I linked all the books to the Booktopia website? Simply because I think they’re a great place to buy books. At this time, the High Tea Party has no affiliation with Booktopia – I just like the website.