“Hope for the best, plan for the worst.”
“Hope for the best, plan for the worst.”
Lee Child’s latest thriller, The Midnight Line, was a terrific read! Check it out:
Reacher takes a stroll through a small Wisconsin town and sees a class ring in a pawn shop window: West Point 2005. A tough year to graduate: Iraq, then Afghanistan. The ring is tiny, for a woman, and it has her initials engraved on the inside. Reacher wonders what unlucky circumstance made her give up something she earned over four hard years. He decides to find out. And find the woman. And return her ring. Why not?
So begins a harrowing journey that takes Reacher through the upper Midwest, from a lowlife bar on the sad side of small town to a dirt-blown crossroads in the middle of nowhere, encountering bikers, cops, crooks, muscle, and a missing persons PI who wears a suit and a tie in the Wyoming wilderness.
The deeper Reacher digs, and the more he learns, the more dangerous the terrain becomes. Turns out the ring was just a small link in a far darker chain. Powerful forces are guarding a vast criminal enterprise. Some lines should never be crossed. But then, neither should Reacher.
“We would all love to walk up to someone and shoot them in the head, there is no doubt about that. We’re too civilised to admit it, but we’re happy to read about it.”
“I don’t know what the secret is when I am writing it – it really is a surprise to me.”
I have just come across this email exchange between Karin Slaughter and Lee Child, talking about the writing life and specifics on writing thrillers. Having read books by both these authors, I loved reading about their exchange in opinions and hearing about the writing of their books.
If you’re interested on reading the exchange too, follow this link for the full exchange that was uploaded to Karin Slaughter’s website a few years back.
“The way to build suspense is simply to ask a question, and then not answer it.”
“The way to write a thriller is to ask a question at the beginning, and answer it at the end.”
“If you can’t acquaint an opponent with reason, you must acquaint his head with the sidewalk.”
-Lee Child, Never Go Back
Hey my dear readers!
I have decided to compile a list of psychological suspense writers that I absolutely LOVE and that I want to recommend to you.
So here goes:
Starting off as my very favourite writer, we have Lisa Gardner.
I cannot emphasise enough how her plot twists still surprise me, even though I have read so many of her books. Crash and Burn had me on the edge of my seat, constantly thinking I knew what was going on, just to find out that I was completely wrong. I also love how complex the main characters are. Though Lisa Gardner writes series featuring specific detectives, they take on a less significant role than the protagonists.
My two favourites so far were her last two books Crash and Burn and Find Her. Here’s just a small taste of Crash and Burn (taken from Amazon):
Nicole Frank shouldn’t have survived the car accident, much less the crawl up the steep ravine. One thought allows her to defy the odds and flag down help—she must save Vero.
If the girl even exists.
Arriving at the scene, Sergeant Wyatt Foster joins the desperate hunt for a missing child, only to learn that Nicky suffers from a rare brain injury that causes delusions. According to her husband, there is no child. Never has been. And yet Nicky remains adamant. She must save Vero. Please, help save Vero.
For Wyatt and investigator Tessa Leoni, nothing about this case is simple. It turns out, Nicky has recently suffered more than one close accident. Is she indeed delusional, as her husband claims, or perhaps she knows more than she thinks? Because clearly someone out there won’t rest till Nicky crashes and burns….
Now, if that hasn’t gotten you itching to read some psychological suspense, the next author on my list is Lisa Jackson.
Similar to Lisa Gardner, Lisa Jackson is also a master of suspense and plot twists, usually throwing in a bit of romance as well.
Currently, I am reading Shiver and I recently finished After She’s Gone, If Only She Knew and Cold-Blooded. Though I would love to tell you about what just happened in Shiver, I hate to steal the element of surprise away from any potential readers. All I’m going to say now is, I didn’t see it coming who would be murdered!
Of course I haven’t just compiled a list of only two writers – I have put the other ones in a list however, since there are so many great ones out there!
The following are must-reads for psychological suspense and thriller fans:
Though I haven’t read all of these yet, because I only recently found them, I also want to highly recommend the anthologies by International Thriller Writers.
I finished reading Face Off a couple of days ago and I must say, the short stories were amazing! Each author was paired off with another to write a short thriller story featuring both their main characters. It’s not only a way to read about your favourite characters finally meeting one another, but also to get o know new authors. I certainly got to know a lot of new ones!
A sequel to Face Off will be published on June 13th, 2017, called Match Up. I’m already super excited!
Similar anthology concepts by ITW include Thriller, Thriller 2 and First Thrills. Other publications are listed here.
That’s it for now. I hope you enjoy the recommendations! If anyone has any others, please comment below. I would be more than happy to learn about more great writers out there I haven’t heard of yet!
“Don’t get it right – get it WRITTEN.”