Updated: Dec 30, 2020
2020 has been a year of facing the unknown, furlough and lots of time indoors. One positive though - lots more time to read and write! Below is a list of the most thrilling books to come out of this awful year - lets face it, we haven't been able to get thrills in any other way!
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Number One - 'I Follow You' by Peter James
If you somehow haven't discovered Peter James yet, then I insist you read all of his novel's right this second - particularly his Roy Grace novels before the TV series 'Grace' appears in 2021! Although you can easily start with stand alone thriller 'I Follow You' to get a taste of James' fast paced story telling. The best selling author is back again for this 2020 novel which follows Dr Marcus Valentine in his seemingly perfect life - that is until he almost hits a jogger with his car. A jogger he is sure he knows. A jogger which ultimately leads to his obsessive downfall and a tragic turn of events.
Number Two - 'The Hidden Girls' by Rebecca Whitney
I love to big up new authors but there really is no need for me to do so when it comes to Rebecca Whitney's debut dark thriller 'The Hidden Girls'. You will be hooked from page one! This easily makes the top 10 of 2020 and will have readers gripped as they follow new Mother Ruth through the terrifying journey of learning to trust herself again following post-partum psychosis. Did she really hear screams at the petrol station or does someone need her help...Ruth just has to find out.
Number Three - 'The Lies You Told' by Harriet Tyce
Following her amazing novel 'Blood Orange' in 2019, Harriet Tyce is back with equal lustre in 'The Lies You Told'. Former barrister Tyce is well placed to tell this story of Sadie Roper - single Mother and barrister herself. What with living in her dead Mothers house, surrounded by nasty memories, a daughter to settle in at an ultra competitive school and an ex-husband clearly up to no good, Sadie also has work to contend with when she gets allocated to a case involving a teacher and his teenage student. This is one of the twistiest books of 2020 and is almost impossible to put down!
Number Four - 'Cry Baby' by Mark Billingham
This is a list of 2020 novels - but the 1990's detail of newly released 'Cry Baby' is seriously nostalgic. Any fan of Mark Billingham will know of the fantastic Tom Thorne novels - though this isn't a further sequel. Instead, 'Cry Baby' is a prequel to the first Tom Thorne book and follows the story of a missing 7 year old boy. Billingham is a master of intrigue and gritty detail that make it so you just can't stop reading!
Number Five - 'Pulpit Rock' by Kate Rhodes
Like twists? Then 'Pulpit Rock' by Kate Rhodes is for you! This is the latest for the Ben Kitto series with one hell of a shock in stall for readers. Expect terrifying threats, grisly murders and suspicious acts in this 'too close to home' thriller.
Number Six - 'The Visitors' by Miranda Rijks
The 'nerve-shredding' ending of 'The Visitors' by Miranda Rijks means this novel should be on everybody's to read list! The story follows the seemingly perfect life of Hannah. Wife of a successful cardiologist and Mother of two children and owner of a beautiful new holiday home. However things take a terrifying turn for the worst when guests Nadia and Mike come to stay…
Number Seven - 'Sleepless' by Louise Mumford
Fans of Black Mirror will love the brand new dystopian thriller 'Sleepless' by Louise Mumford. Any insomniac (or parent for that matter) will relate to how happy Thea is to be asked to join a sleep trial - which turns out to actually work! Thea feels better than she has for years. Why though, is she not allowed to leave her room, why does she have no phone signal and why are all of her personal possessions locked away - including shoes? Something isn't right and you will not be able to put this book down until you know what it is!
Number Eight - 'Lockdown' by Peter May
Want a scarily relevant thriller rather than an escape? 'Lockdown' will make sure you don't sleep at night! Peter May tells the tale of a global pandemic which completely shuts down London. In this tale though, a little boy has been murdered and the killer will stop at nothing to keep the boy from being identified. Is D.I. Jack Macneil in over his head, or can he hunt down the killer in the midst of a global pandemic? With the unexpected events of 2020 following us into 2021, this book will certainly hit you right in the feels.
Number Nine - 'The Split' by Sharon Bolton
Now I am biased towards Sharon Bolton as one of my favourite authors but she really has done it again with latest novel 'The Split'. Felicity Lloyd flees to one of the remotest islands in the world to escape her violent former flame, but knows he will never stop looking for her. Will Felicity continue to flee for the rest of her life, or will she fight to live freely?
Number Ten - 'Dear Child' by Romy Hausmann
Last but certainly not least, Romy Hausman's 'Dear Child' has to be on here as one of the scariest thrillers of 2020. This is a German best seller with an ending that can only be described as an unrivalled experience! Lena and her two children are being kept prisoner in her husband's windowless, woodland shack, but when she finally escapes all is not as it seems...including Lena. Who is she really and what will happen now they are free?
Have you read any other awesome psychological thrillers this year? Let us know about them in the comments below!