At the beginning of October, I unconsciously started reading murder-thriller books. It started with finally reading One of Us Is Lying and then I went to Lauren Oliver's book event for her new book, Broken Things, so I decided I would pick up a few more to read on the many plane rides I've taken recently and make a list for you. I've ranked them by the books I enjoyed most, but I'm also throwing a scariness ranking below too.
1. The Cheerleaders by Kara Thomas
I loved The Cheerleaders. Even if I wasn't narrowing this to just thrillers, this would still be up there. While there's no immediate threat, there's still a sinister feeling five years after five cheerleaders die in a year in three accidents. One of the girl's sister, who investigates, also has a complicated life of her own. Thomas did an awesome job of sprinkling the mystery clues and bringing us a story through such a strong voice. Here's my full Review Here (4.5 stars overall, 2 scare factor)
2. One of Us Is Lying by Karen McManus
This was the book that got me hooked on the murder mystery for October train. While the air of suspicion is low because the four people in the room are quickly proved to be innocent to the reader, I enjoyed getting to see four prospectives as they dived into theories, police investigations, and arrest.
Here's my Full Review Here (Overall 4.5, Scare Factor 2)
3. There's Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins
While I don't do scary movies, I found myself surprisingly immune to the scary, stabby thriller books and true crime podcasts, but I have to admit, Perkins got my heart racing. This was the only book that had me wanting to keep a night light on. Even though we find out who the killer is halfway through the book, he remains on the loose and very, very dangerous. The threat felt eminent. Also, as a bonus, this book takes place Halloween Weekend. For a full look into what it's about, check out my review here: Review Here (4 stars overall, 5 on scare factor)
4. Broken Things by Lauren Oliver
The book takes the cake for for dark and disturbing. Even though Perkin's book has some pretty grizzly scenes, Broken Things is based around a version of the slender man killings. The details around Quinn's death were horrifying, but her two best friends solving the mystery have little threat against them. Their names have been legally cleared; they just need answers. Full Review Here (4 overall, 4 scare factor)
5. Little Monsters by Kara Thomas
I picked this one up after The Cheerleaders which was a little strange because I could see how much she grew as a writer between the two books. This book was defiantly thrilling, but the characters weren't as well defined as in her next book. While technically I think The Cheerleaders is better, Little Monsters is your better scare bet. Full Review Here (3.5 overall, 4 scare factor)
The Book I Didn't Get To... The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kirsten White
I bought this at my local indie, but I didn't get around to it in time. I wanted to put it on the list anyway though because 1) it sounds awesome and 2) I will be reviewing it soon. The idea of a female centric reimagining of Frankenstein sounds like the perfect Halloween book.
And A Halloween Bonus... The First Degree Podcast
I'm not super into true crime, but I love podcasts. I stumbled upon this one because it stars Jak Vanek from The Lady Gang (which is on my list of podcasts here), and I kept listening because of their unique take on true crime stories. They examine cases through the eyes of someone who either knew the victim or the murderer in some capacity which shifts the focus from the gore and more into examining the lives of the people involved.