Indie Bookseller Picks: 5 Gripping Novels I Recommend to Add Some Suspense to Your Summer

July 8 2020

Alyssa Raymond is a bookseller at Copper Dog Books, located in downtown Beverly, Massachusetts, offering highly personalized customer service and a broad selection of books, gifts, cards, and more. The owners, Meg Wasmer and Julie Karaganis, are Beverly residents who are devoted to their local communities and readers everywhere. 

Looking for summer reading that’s entertaining, engrossing, thought-provoking, and unsettling but also hopeful? With lively writing and compelling stories? Here are some of my favorite suspense novels to recommend—books with surprising twists, secrets and lies, close friendships and bitter rivalries, complicated love, and complex, struggling characters who are resilient. 

All the Missing Girls
by Megan Miranda

When Nic returns to her North Carolina hometown where her best friend disappeared a decade ago, her high school sweetheart’s girlfriend also goes missing. Mirandas unique, twisty thriller is mostly told backward, its chapter-by-chapter reverse chronology building suspense and deftly challenging our understanding of what has happened and is happening. 

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All the Missing Girls
Megan Miranda

A spellbinding psychological thriller told in reverse, Megan Miranda’s first novel for adult readers is about the connected disappearances of two young women ten years apart in the same small town. Miranda has an uncanny talent for suspense. Megan Miranda’s new novel, THE PERFECT STRANGER, is just out.

Read a review of the book Megan Miranda can’t stop recommending.

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The Lying Game
by Ruth Ware

Four girlfriends, reuniting fifteen years after their expulsion from Salten House, an English boarding school, are haunted by their past secrets and lies. In the beginning of this gripping psychological thriller, a human bone is found in the marshes near where Kate lives, close to Salten House, and Isa, Thea, and Fatima hurry to respond to Kates plea for help. 

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The Lying Game
Ruth Ware

INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES, USA TODAY, AND LOS ANGELES TIMES BESTSELLER!

“So many questions...Until the very last page! Needless to say, I could not put this book down!” —Reese Witherspoon

“Once again the author of The Woman in Cabin 10 delivers mega-chills.” —People

“Missing Big Little Lies? Dig into this psychological thriller about whether you can really trust your nearest and dearest.” —Cosmopolitan

From the instant New York Times bestselling author of blockbuster thrillers In a Dark, Dark Wood and The Woman in Cabin 10 comes a chilling new novel of friendship, secrets, and the dangerous games teenaged girls play.

On a cool June morning, a woman is walking her dog in the idyllic coastal village of Salten, along a tidal estuary known as the Reach. Before she can stop him, the dog charges into the water to retrieve what first appears to be a wayward stick, but to her horror, turns out to be something much more sinister.

The next morning, three women in and around London—Fatima, Thea, and Isa—receive the text they had always hoped would never come, from the fourth in their formerly inseparable clique, Kate, that says only, “I need you.”

The four girls were best friends at Salten, a second-rate boarding school set near the cliffs of the English Channel. Each different in their own way, the four became inseparable and were notorious for playing the Lying Game, telling lies at every turn to both fellow boarders and faculty. But their little game had consequences, and as the four converge in present-day Salten, they realize their shared past was not as safely buried as they had once hoped.

Atmospheric, twisty, and with just the right amount of chill to keep you wrong-footed, The Lying Game is told in Ruth Ware’s signature suspenseful style, lending itself to becoming another unputdownable thriller from the Agatha Christie of our time.

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Give Me Your Hand
by Megan Abbott

More than a decade after a shared secret destroyed their friendship and they went their separate ways for college, Kit and Diane find themselves together again as the only women in a male-dominated lab, now competing for the same spot on a research team. Will Kit reveal Dianes secret in order to get ahead? How far will Diane go to keep the truth hidden?  

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Give Me Your Hand
Megan Abbott

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The Husband's Secret
by Liane Moriarty

When Cecilia, a happily married mother of three daughters, reads a letter from her husband that was not supposed to be opened until after his death, she finds out his deepest, darkest secret, and her perfect life unravels. But shes not the only one who is forever changed when hard truths are revealed and the past haunts the present in her Sydney, Australiacommunity. 

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The Husband's Secret
Liane Moriarty

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My Sister, the Serial Killer
by Oyinkan Braithwaite

What if your sister kept offing her boyfriends and getting away with it after you had cleaned up her messes? And shes now pursuing the handsome and kind doctor you love? Braithwaites darkly funny debut about Nigerian sisters-in-crime Ayoola and Korede is the epitome of a page-turner: impossible to put down and a perfect weekend read! 

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My Sister, the Serial Killer
Oyinkan Braithwaite

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