I just finished three psychological thrillers in a row, all of which scared me. Why didn’t I stop after the first and read some cozy mystery set in some charming town in England? Why did I instead pick up yet another one? I don’t know, except to say that sometimes it’s fun to be scared. And, let’s face it, unlike a lot of thrillers that aren’t well-written, these actually were.
I finished Gone Girl first, which has a lot of hype attached to it, and for good reason. The story begins with a man returning home to find his wife missing and evidence of foul play. His subsequent actions and reactions are a little suspicious, so of course he becomes the main suspect. Even though his wife is missing, we still get to know her because the reader is treated to a series of her diary entries throughout the book. It keeps you guessing at every turn – you think you know a character, and then boom! the author throws a curveball your way.
I then read Dead Scared by SJ Bolton because I love anything set in Oxford. This book scared me the most, yet I think the plot had the most holes and unanswered questions at the end. I think if you stick with a mystery until the end, the author should reward you with all the answers to your questions at the finale. It did have the creepiest plot, with a woman going undercover to investigate a string of suspicious suicides.
I ended my foray into the world of psychological thrillers with So Pretty It Hurts by Kate White. This is a Bailey Wiggins novel, featuring a crime reporter who is snowbound for the weekend at a home where a model ends up dead. Soon, her investigation into the model’s death makes Bailey a target, and she has to solve the mystery to save her job and her life. Because she works for a celebrity magazine, there were a lot of references to current celebrities and scandals, so this book will probably seem dated in a matter of years, but it was a fun read, and Bailey is a likable protagonist. In fact, I just might have to get the previous books in the series, which means this could be another sleepless weekend…