Rainy days like this make me want cuddle up in a cozy blanket, drink some hot tea and dive into a good book. Lately, I’ve been reading lots of thrillers and mysteries. They’ve majorly popularized in recent years thanks to Reese Witherspoon’s Book Club and Gone Girl. And because of this, a lot of my friends have been sharing book recommendations, so I wanted to share a few of my favorite rainy day books!
This is mystery psychological thriller #1. The OG to the breakthrough in the recent surge of this genre’s popularity. Basically a girl (Amy) and a guy (Nick) get married, she is forced to move from NYC to the Midwest (enough to drive anyone insane, am I right?) and then she goes missing. What’s cool about this book is that it is set up from two people’s perspectives: the husband’s during the disappearance and the wife’s pre-disappearance. You learn about each other’s respective personalities via their spouse and begin to question the reality they each have created in their own minds.
This book kind of confused me but in a good way that kept me questioning who each character was and whether or not their they were telling the truth. I had no clue who each person REALLY was until the very last few pages, which set up for a grand reveal that was out of this world. It starts off with a classic “best friend goes missing, girl moves away to the city but has to return to her hometown and another girl goes missing JUST LIKE HER BEST FRIEND DID 10 YEARS AGO”. But this book is different because the present-day murder is revealed in the beginning of the book but then the book jumps back two weeks and it told backwards, from day 15 (Nic’s, the protagonist’s, arrival to her hometown) to day 1 (Annaleise’s, the victim’s, murder). It is full of twists and turns that finally unravels and the truth is discovered.
I have previously written a review on this book before. Like I mentioned in the post, I had a difficult time deciding whether or not I should review it or even suggest it for people to read because it is incredibly graphic and disturbing. But looking back, the book kept me engrossed for 8+ hours (I read it in one night), so it was probably worth reading. Essentially it’s about two sisters who, similar to All The Missing Girls, have a third sister who goes missing some 20 years ago and then (present day) another girl goes missing, so the two sisters team up to find the killer of their sister and the present day victim. It’s a really good book that feels like a real-life criminal minds episode at work.
I’ve read two out of the three Canaan Crime Series’ books – The Silent Girls and The Names of Dead Girls. I also read the books in backwards order, not because I did it on purpose but because I didn’t know which book was first. I coincidentally happened to buy the third book while on vacation in Vermont (where the books take place) and read it first. And then proceeded to (unknowingly) buy the second book instead of the first book and then read that one. I now have the first book on order from Amazon. Nonetheless, you clearly don’t need to read the books in order. There aren’t any spoilers. The only relation between the three books is the main characters. Each book follows a lead detective from Canaan, VT who uncovers a grisly murder and searches to find the killer. It’s very much so a true crime/True Detective type book that you won’t be able to put down.
This book was more mystery than thriller. It follows Lo, a journalist who scores a free ride upon the Aurora, a cruise ship that is setting out on its maiden voyage through the North Sea in search of the Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights). Lo is having a chill time on the boat, drinking wine and eating food, but when she returns to her room on the first night, she sees what she believes in a murder in the room next to hers. But when she contacts the ship’s safety department and tries to report the murder, she is told that nobody is staying in the room next to hers, so she must have dreamed the murder up. Lo is convinced that the murder DID happen and begins investigating…which doesn’t go well and turns into a light thriller/mystery. It’s a fun beach or rainy day read!
After reading In a Dark, Dark Wood, I felt like I had just read The Woman in Cabin 10, which probably had a lot to do with both books being written by the same author. It wasn’t a crazy psychological thriller like Gone Girl or Pretty Girls but it still had a bit of thrill to it, especially near the end. It really is more of a mystery though. Leonora goes on a bachelorette weekend to the English countryside for a girl who she hasn’t talked to in 10 years. However, Leonora feels like she’s being watched–and the creepy mystery footprints and nighttime creaking sounds don’t help. Turns out she is…
Hopefully I haven’t scared you off with all of my psycho thriller recommendations. And if I didn’t, then congrats–I’ve got a recommendation that isn’t scary! The Alice Network is a fantastic, girl-power book about the two entangling worlds of an ex-WWI British female spy, Eve, and a pregnant American girl, Charlie, looking for her cousin who went missing during WWII in France. The book jumps between WWI in 1915 and post-WWII “present-day” 1947. It’s got a bit of romance, mystery, heartbreak and self-discovery, all neatly bundled into one perfect little book.
I also have these four below books on my “to read list”, so check out my recommendations in the next few weeks to see if they’re worth picking up!
- I’ll Be Gone in the Dark : One Women’s Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer – Michelle McNamara
- Sharp Objects – Gillian Flynn
- Defending Jacob – William Landay
- Behind Closed Doors – B.A. Paris
If you have read or are about to read any of the books I’ve mentioned above, let me know! I’d love to hear what you guys think of them.