I am always on the hunt for a new thriller that is actually…thrilling. Everything is being compared to Gone Girl upon conception, so how do you know if something is as page-turning as a Gillian Flynn book? I’ve started ignoring those comparisons, like most people, because they have saturated absolutely everything with a female protagonist. Luckily, a lot of authors I already know and love have books coming out this season, and some new ones I have really high hopes for. Here are 10 books I don’t want to miss this spring.
The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel (March 7)
Roanoke girls never last long around here. In the end, we either run or we die.
This one sounds like an adult We Were Liars with the family summer house aspect, and I can’t wait to scope this one out. Sarah at Sarah’s Book Shelves called this one “a great vacation accessory” which is all I really needed to hear to make this a summer beach read this upcoming season!
The Secrets You Keep by Kate White (March 21)
What would you do if you realized that your new husband, a man you adore, is keeping secrets from you—secrets with terrifying consequences?
Does this snippet sound like the beginnings of a million other thrillers? Probably. But the fact that this books centers around a self-help author and her increasingly terrifying dreams gives me hope. This one also has plenty of great reviews on Goodreads already, so I think it will make for a compelling spring read!
A Simple Favor by Darcey Bell (March 21)
She’s your best friend.
She knows all your secrets.
That’s why she’s so dangerous.
I love the fact that this book is about friendship rather than a marriage! That’s so rare in the majority of thrillers I pick up. I think that was what I also liked about Behind Her Eyes — the focus on friendship as much as marriage. Those relationships tend to be much more interesting and complex than some of the marriage-focused books I’ve read, which I love.
It starts with a simple favor—an ordinary kindness mothers do for one another. When her best friend, Emily, asks Stephanie to pick up her son Nicky after school, she happily says yes. Nicky and her son, Miles, are classmates and best friends, and the five-year-olds love being together—just like she and Emily. A widow and stay-at-home mommy blogger living in woodsy suburban Connecticut, Stephanie was lonely until she met Emily, a sophisticated PR executive whose job in Manhattan demands so much of her time.
But Emily doesn’t come back.
Follow Me Down by Sherri Smith (March 28)
Mia Haas has built a life for herself far from the North Dakota town where she grew up, but when she receives word that her twin brother is missing, she’s forced to return home. Once hailed as the golden boy of their small town, Lucas Haas disappeared the same day the body of one of his high school students is pulled from the river. Trying to wrap her head around the rumors of Lucas’s affair with the teen, and unable to reconcile the media’s portrayal of Lucas as a murderer with her own memories of him, Mia is desperate to find another suspect.
All the while, she wonders, if he’s innocent, why did he run?
Like A Simple Favor, I was drawn to this one because it’s about a brother sister duo rather than a marriage. Mia’s return to her hometown and past remind me of one of my favorite thrillers, Dark Places, so I have high hopes for this one. I started just a few pages of it the other night and it has a gripping first few pages!
The Perfect Stranger by Megan Miranda (April 11)
I was one of few thriller fans who didn’t pick up Megan Miranda’s 2016 hit, All the Missing Girls, but this one jumped out at me. About a disgraced journalist fleeing from a story gone wrong, The Perfect Stranger is the perfect book to lose yourself in over a weekend, which is exactly what I did.
Confronted by a restraining order and the threat of a lawsuit, failed journalist Leah Stevens needs to get out of Boston when she runs into an old friend, Emmy Grey, who has just left a troubled relationship. Emmy proposes they move to rural Pennsylvania, where Leah can get a teaching position and both women can start again. But their new start is threatened when a woman with an eerie resemblance to Leah is assaulted by the lake, and Emmy disappears days later.
I’ve already read this one and it kept me engaged all the way through. Definitely worth picking up!
The Day I Died by Lori Rader-Day (April 11)
Anna Winger can know people better than they know themselves with only a glance—at their handwriting. Hired out by companies wanting to land trustworthy employees and by the lovelorn hoping to find happiness, Anna likes to keep the real-life mess of other people at arm’s length and on paper. But when she is called to use her expertise on a note left behind at a murder scene in the small town she and her son have recently moved to, the crime gets under Anna’s skin and rips open her narrow life for all to see. To save her son—and herself—once and for all, Anna will face her every fear, her every mistake, and the past she thought she’d rewritten.
I fell in love with Lori Rader-Day when I read Pretty Little Things at the beginning of the year, and I have been looking forward to this one since I hear it was coming out this spring. Lori Rader-Day is great at writing women starting over and trying to escape the past, so I cannot wait to pick this one up!
Into the Water by Paula Hawkins (May 2)
A single mother turns up dead at the bottom of the river that runs through town. Earlier in the summer, a vulnerable teenage girl met the same fate. They are not the first women lost to these dark waters, but their deaths disturb the river and its history, dredging up secrets long submerged.
Left behind is a lonely fifteen-year-old girl. Parentless and friendless, she now finds herself in the care of her mother’s sister, a fearful stranger who has been dragged back to the place she deliberately ran from—a place to which she vowed she’d never return.
It’s the follow up to The Girl on the Train, of course this is on my list. Will she match her best-selling debut? Will she surpass it? I’m dying to know what Paula Hawkins will do next, and luckily, only have to wait another month to see what it is!
Not a Sound by Heather Gudenkauf (May 30)
When a tragic accident leaves nurse Amelia Winn deaf, she spirals into a depression that ultimately causes her to lose everything that matters–her job, her husband, David, and her stepdaughter, Nora. Now, two years later and with the help of her hearing dog, Stitch, she is finally getting back on her feet. But when she discovers the body of a fellow nurse in the dense bush by the river, deep in the woods near her cabin, she is plunged into a disturbing mystery that could shatter the carefully reconstructed pieces of her life all over again.
As clues begin to surface, Amelia finds herself swept into an investigation that hits all too close to home. But how much is she willing to risk in order to uncover the truth and bring a killer to justice?
I’m reading this one now, and it is definitely unsettling not having any background sounds included in the book. I wasn’t sure how it would work when I read about it, but it explains that Heather Gudenkauf is actually significantly hearing impaired herself, and writes a very compelling thriller from that perspective. This one is definitely different, and I can’t wait to see how it turns out!
Undertow by Elizabeth Heathcote (June 13)
They said her death was a tragic accident. And I believed them…until now.
Carmen is happily married to Tom, although she knows she’ll always live in the shadow of another woman—the mistress who ended his first marriage: Zena. Mercurial, mesmerizing, manipulative Zena—a woman who, Carmen begins to discover, had the potential to incite the darkest of emotions. Zena, who drowned in the sea late one night.
I’m getting serious Rebecca vibes from this one, and absolutely cannot wait to dive into this one. I have an ARC of it just waiting for me, but I have the feeling this will be a great summer read. Plus, Abby at Crime by the Book called this one a binge-worthy book, and I know I can trust her opinions on thrillers!
Every Last Lie by Mary Kubica (June 27)
“The bad man, Daddy. The bad man is after us.”
Clara Solberg’s world shatters when her husband and their four-year-old daughter are in a car crash, killing Nick while Maisie is remarkably unharmed. The crash is ruled an accident…until the coming days, when Maisie starts having night terrors that make Clara question what really happened on that fateful afternoon.
Another one I’ve already read and loved, I have to include even though this is technically a summer release. I’ve read all of Mary Kubica’s books so far and she has never let me down. When I saw that she had a new book coming this June (with rave reviews by Megan Abbott no less), I knew I had to grab it ASAP.
What I loved about this one was the real emotion she wove into the story. So often death is just part of a thriller’s plot, but we don’t get that feeling of loss like we do in Every Last Lie. I want to talk about this one and the ending, so I can’t wait for the release of this one!
What are you looking forward to reading this spring? Tell me!