This year, I’ve read some great thrillers. Here’s a quick look at four of them. I realized as I’m typing these up that all four of these have two things in common: they are all told through multiple narrators, and they are all page turners.
By Charlie Donlea
This is the second book in the Rory Moore/Lane Phillips series. (The first book [Some Choose Darkness] is excellent, but you don’t need to read it first in order to enjoy The Suicide House. Rory Moore is an interesting character, definitely read Some Choose Darkness for more of her background.) The Suicide House pulls in several great elements – an unsolved double murder (plus mysterious suicides) at an elite prep school setting, a lone true crime podcaster determined to uncover the truth, and cold case investigator Rory Moore pulled in by personal circumstances to begin her own cold case investigation. This book is full of secrets along with plenty of twists and turns, and it kept me reading long into the night. Really enjoyed everything about this mystery, and am looking forward to Rory’s next case.
By Megan Goldin
The Night Swim is another book with a true crime podcast focus. In this book, podcaster Rachel Krall finds herself spending a few weeks in Neapolis, North Carolina to cover the Scott Blair trial. The “golden boy” swimmer of this small town, Scott has been accused of rape by a local teenager, which he denies and many in the town are vilifying his accuser. While in town, Rachel begins to get notes from Hannah Stills, begging Rachel to help her find the truth of her sister’s death in Neapolis 25 years ago. As the trial begins and Hannah’s letters continue, there are many parallels happening between the two cases.
The Night Swim is well paced and well written, but as a warning to readers – I found it at times to be an emotionally difficult read. Ms. Goldwin wove these two mysteries together throughout along with episodes of Rachel’s podcast Guilty or Not Guilty to create an engaging story. This one is another read that will keep you turning pages late into the night.
By Wendy Walker
Molly Clarke runs out of gas and the next day her car is found abandoned near a gas station. Has she left her family, or did something happen to her? The interesting twist of Don’t Look for Me is that what happened to Molly isn’t really the mystery of the book – this character is one of the narrators of the story. Molly’s story unfolds in parallel as her daughter Nicole returns to the small town where her mother’s abandoned car was found. Don’t Look for Me is well paced and full of questions as Nicole begins her own investigation into her mother’s disappearance. Who is telling the truth? Who can she trust? This one kept me guessing until the end.
By Lisa Jewell
Alice finds a man sitting on the beach outside of her house. He has no idea who he is or where he comes from. Several hundred miles away near London, newly-married Lily knows something is wrong when her husband fails to come home from work. Add to that a third narrative from twenty years earlier, the story of Gray and his sister Kirsty and a fateful summer holiday at the Rabbit Cottage. Ms. Jewell is a master storyteller, slowly fleshing out the characters and the mysteries surrounding them, and interweaving these three tales together throughout the book. I don’t want to say more and spoil anything for a reader. This was a tightly-plotted mystery with great twists throughout, and the narration from the three different stories work well together.