4 (More) Thrillers I Loved, 4 I Didn’t, And 4 I Can’t Wait To Read

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It’s been a while since I’ve done a “loved, hated, can’t wait to read” post and I felt it was time for a new one. I wanted the next one to be a new genre (I’ve done thriller and dystopian already) but I’ve mostly been reading thrillers so here we are.

I think these posts are fun to put together and a good combination of recommendations and TBR. But I don’t make myself a TBR (I’m a solid mood reader) so it’s just four I want to read. Eventually.

I do have three of my four “can’t wait to reads” on my 23 in 23 list though so they’ll be read sooner than later.

I also want to say, even though I share four that I didn’t love/hated that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t read them! I know there are plenty of people that enjoyed them, I’m just not one of them and that’s ok.

  • If you want to listen to some of these, consider trying Audible! You can get your first month free (one free book) plus tons of others they have for free.  Get that Audible deal here.
  • If you’re on more of a budget, try Scribd!  You can get your first month free there. You can read books and listen to audiobooks. It is unlimited (especially the reading) but if you listen to tons of new audiobooks you may be restricted after a few. I don’t listen to enough to confirm this, but I do use Scribd myself and like it a lot. Sign up for Scribd here!
  • Shop my collection of bookish goodies on Etsy! These aren’t my shop items, but other shops I’ve curated into a book-themed collection. Shop my Etsy bookish goodies here!
  • If you want to read more on your Kindle but don’t want to buy books, Kindle Unlimited is a wonderful option. It’s $9.99 a month but if you read a lot and like to read more than just new releases, it could be worth it. Get Kindle Unlimited here!
  • Get $5 off of $25 from BookOutlet! This is a great place to find new books for pretty cheap. They also have sales quite a bit, so keep an eye out for those. I tend to check here for books I want if they’re more expensive other places. They don’t have everything but they do have a lot. Shop BookOutlet here!
  • Thrift Books has become my go-to when I’m looking for a book and want it cheap. It’s great if you like buying used books. With this you can get a free book after spending $30!
  • Shop my book lists here! You can find every book list I have on Bookshop.org (except my monthly round-ups) and I add everything I can but they occasionally won’t have some. I do occasionally add extras though. If any lists are empty, they’ll be filled in shortly! Shop my bookshop.org book lists here.
  • Shopping internationally? Check out Book Depository!


First up, we’ll start with four thrillers I loved! I’ve read all of these since that last post I made and all four of these are actually on my favorite thrillers of all-time list!

The Mother-in-Law

Synopsis: Diana knew Lucy wasn’t the one for her perfect son from the moment they met. Diana always kept Lucy at arm’s length despite her attempts to win her over. No one had a bad word to say about Diana, a pillar in the community and advocate for female refugees, except for Lucy.

Five years later, Diana is dead with a suicide note near her body claiming she no longer wanted to live with cancer wreaking havoc in her body, but the autopsy only finds traces of poison and evidence of suffocation, no cancer. And Lucy isn’t exactly sad she’s gone.

Why I loved it: This isn’t like, a super high-stakes, fast-paced thriller but it wasn’t slow-moving either. This is a much more touching thriller and perfect if you want something revolving around family.

I was very curious the whole time to see where this was going and I won’t lie, I can’t remember what happened right now but I know that I loved the whole thing. I’d say that means it’s perfect for a reread!

Hidden Pictures

Synopsis: Mallory is fresh out of rehab at her new job as a babysitter in Spring Brook, New Jersey, and things are looking good for her. Ted and Caroline are great bosses and Teddy is the perfect child who is never without his drawing supplies.

But as time passes, his drawings go from rabbits and balloons to a woman’s lifeless body and a man burying her. The drawings become more detailed and complex, far beyond the five-year-olds ability. Mallory begins to think it’s a long-ago unsolved murder and is determined to find out what is going on before it’s too late.

Why I loved it: I liked the drawings in this one, I loved the whole idea of it, it was really fast-paced, and I was just into all of it. I read almost all of this in one day. SO GOOD.

No Exit

Synopsis: Darby is on her way to see her dying mother back home in Utah when she gets caught in a blizzard in the Colorado mountains. She’s forced to wait out the storm at a rest stop with four total strangers.

Trying to find a signal to call home, Darby goes to the parking lot and instead finds a little girl locked in an animal crate in the van parked next to her.

Now she is determined to find a way to get the girl out of the van and escape since one of her fellow travelers is a kidnapper. She has to decide who she can trust now.

Why I loved it: There were so many twists and turns in this and I was always surprised by them. Yeah, most things Darby does don’t make sense, but I still loved this. I loved the setting, the creepy vibes, and illogical Darby.

I did not like the movie at all but the book was so good. I was into this one the whole time and I very much look forward to reading his other books.

The Perfect Stranger

Synopsis: Leah needs to get out of Boston so when her friend Emmy proposes they move to rural Pennsylvania together to start over, she jumps at the chance.

Everything starts to fall apart when a woman resembling Leah is assaulted by the lake and Emmy disappears days later.

Leah is determined to find Emmy but along the way, starts to wonder if she ever knew the real Emmy at all.

Why I loved it: This is another one read almost all of in one day! And so far it’s my favorite Megan Miranda book. This one was fast-paced and kept my attention. The whole time I just needed to know ow it was going to end. I loved it.


I thought it would be unfair to make all of the section Riley Sager so I went with half instead. I had a few YA thrillers I almost put on this list (mainly for this section) but I might make a separate post like this for those.

I managed to scrape together four thrillers that I didn’t love though, but they may still be worth reading. You may love them even if I didn’t, you never know!

Survive the Night

Synopsis: It’s 1991 and Charlie, a movie-obsessed college student, may be in the car of a serial killer. Her university campus has been plagued by the Campus Killer for the last few years but when Josh offers her a ride back to her hometown, she agrees.

But the longer she’s in his car, the more unsure she is about who he really is. Could he really be the Campus Killer or is it all just a movie in her mind? (ugh, gag me with that phrase.)

Why I didn’t love it: There are too many things to list here without ruining the book so I’ll keep it simple: nothing, and I mean nothing Charlie does makes sense. You can see those thoughts here.

Night of the Mannequins

Synopsis: Is it a living mannequin or psychopath terrorizing this small town after a teen prank goes horribly wrong?

Why I didn’t love it: I did not like this, but thankfully it’s pretty short. It was weird, and not in a good way, and just didn’t make sense. It’s pretty obvious what’s really going on but this did not do it for me.

Home Before Dark

Synopsis: When Maggie was 5, her family moved into the infamous Baneberry Hall in the woods of Vermont. Just three weeks later they fled in the middle of the night. Her father recounted the entire experience in his book House of Horrors but her parents would never tell her what really happened.

When her father dies 25 years later, it turns out he never sold the house. Maggie has inherited it and is set on finding the truth as she renovates it to sell it. She doesn’t believe a word of what her father wrote because ghosts aren’t real but something happened there and her return is anything but pleasant. As strange things start to happen, she begins to wonder if what her father wrote was more fact than fiction after all.

Why I didn’t love it: I was very into this for almost all of it. It was creepy and the vibes were great, but then we got to the end and the twists started untwisting and I was not impressed. Again, I can’t get into details without spoiling it here but I did not like this. You can see those thoughts here.

Our Little Secret

Synopsis: Chris is waiting in an empty train station. He’s ready to join his wife and things are going to plan. Until Sarah shows up and ruins everything.

She thought he was drunk but actually, she stopped a suicide and becomes obsessed with finding out his secrets while he becomes obsessed with stopping her.

Why I didn’t love it: I can remember almost nothing about this so it’s safe to say it didn’t leave much of an impression on me. Like, at all. I don’t think I disliked it as much as the previous three, but I didn’t like it much either.

Can’t wait to read

Finally, the shortlist of books I consistently say “I can’t wait to read that one!” about. There are about a million that could go here but I managed to narrow it down to just four. For now.

Three of these are on my list for the 23 in 23 challenge and I’ll probably be moving onto them sooner than later.

The Appeal

Synopsis: Martin is the director of the local theater group The Fairway Players, and his wife Helen is the star of the play. Their granddaughter is diagnosed with a rare form of cancer which has an expensive experimental treatment. The cast rallies to raise funds but not everyone is convinced the treatment will work or the good intentions of everyone involved.

Tensions grow and the day after an explosive dress rehearsal, a body is found and an arrest is made. As the trial approaches, two young lawyers sift through evidence and suspect the killer is hiding in plain sight.

Why I can’t wait to read it: This is an epistolary novel which is my absolute favorite format to read. I barely even knew anything about the content of the book just that I’ve heard good things, it’s epistolary, and it’s a thriller. Say no more.

One by One

Synopsis: It doesn’t sound the worst to be snowed in at a luxurious French chalet but it is when it’s eight coworkers that all have something to gain, something to lose, and something to hide.

It started out like your average corporate retreat but tensions rise and loyalties are tested when a shareholder upended the agenda by pushing a contentious but lucrative buyout offer.

The storm brewing inside rivals the one brewing outside. An avalanche leaves the group stranded but one person never made it back from the slopes. As time passes and no sign of rescue is seen, the group begins to dwindle, one by one.

Why I can’t wait to read it: Two reasons: I want to read all of Ruth Ware’s books so II can rank them and this will mean I only have two left (of the ones published so far), and I’m on a winter thriller kick, so this honestly may be next!

The Nesting

Synopsis: Tom Faraday is determined to finish his high-concept environmentally friendly home he’s building in Norway. It’s the same place he lost his wife, Aurelia, to suicide and he wants to honor her with their dream home.

Lexi takes a job as his nanny and falls in love his the two girls, especially Gaia. But something is off about the isolated home.

Muddy footprints appear inside, Aurelia’s diary appears in Lexi’s room, and Gaia keeps telling her about the Sad Lady. She begins to expect Aurelia didn’t kill herself and they’re all in danger of something far more sinister.

Why I can’t wait to read it: The concept of this is intriguing, it’s set in Norway, and I love a good stormy setting. I honestly don’t know if there’s anything else, those are three pretty solid reasons, I’d say!

Central Park

Synopsis: Alice is a Parisian cop who wakes up handcuffed to a stranger, Gabriel, in Central Park with no memory of the night before. Disoriented and with someone else’s blood on her shirt, she works furiously to connect the dots.

She remembers clubbing with friends on the Champs–Elysees and Gabriel swears he was playing a gig in Dublin. Over the next 24 hours the race across New York in search of answers.

Why I can’t wait to read it: I got this in the bargain section at BAM and it sounds really interesting. I mean, how can you get from Paris to NYC overnight with no idea how? I am intrigued.

What are some thillers you loved, didn’t like, and can’t wait to read? Have you read any of these? Which ones?

Author: Megan Johnson

I'm Megan, a cheesehead at heart currently residing in the Sunshine State. You can probably find me reading, watching Forensic Files, or both.

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