Some books are made to be savoured and admired, but other unputdownable page-turners are designed to be torn through in a single weekend. The new thrillers I share in this list? They absolutely fit best in the second category.
You’re in the right place if you want twisty psychological thrillers, suspense novels that will leave you guessing, and mysteries that take up all your free time until you reach the last page.
Whether you’re looking for perfect vacation reads, escapist books for your commute, or just unputdownable writing, read on for the best new thrillers for 2023.
All of these picks are new releases for 2023, including new additions to bestselling series and many choices that showcase the top thriller trends of 2023, from devious maids to podcast hosts in peril. Enjoy!
The best thrillers to read now for gripping suspense and plot twists
None of This Is True by Lisa Jewell
Read None of This Is True for… a chilling psychological thriller with Only Murders in the Building vibes about a woman who becomes the subject of her own true crime podcast.
Embracing one of the genre’s current darlings – true crime podcasts – this scintillating new thriller for 2023 is the story of popular podcaster Alix Summers.
When she crosses paths with Josie Fair in the local pub, not only does Alix find out that she is her birthday twin, but Josie also pitches her complicated life as a subject for her podcast.
Alix can’t resist investigating, but as soon as she starts, she realises that Josie has already worked her way into Alix’s life – and it’s way creepier than she could’ve imagined.
Bright Young Women by Jessica Knoll
Read Bright Young Women for… a captivating new thriller for September 2023 inspired by the real-life sorority that became the target of an awful crime.
In 1978, the U.S. news was covered with stories of a serial criminal targeting women across the Pacific Northwest. But in Jessica Knoll’s new thriller, this couldn’t be further from the minds of the vibrant and intelligent sorority women of Florida State University’s campus in Tallahassee.
You can probably guess what’s coming next. But that said, the terrifying mystery of the book is incredibly immersive, making it one of the best new thrillers of 2023.
The Housemaid’s Secret (The Housemaid #2) by Freida McFadden
Read The Housemaid’s Secret for… the unputdownable follow-up to one of the best thrillers of 2022.
If you love thrillers, you’ve probably heard of Freida McFadden’s The Housemaid. This sequel, The Housemaid’s Secret, is admittedly very similar to the bestseller, but if you loved the first installment, why not continue?
Escape into this gripping story for deception and buried secrets in a stunning luxury penthouse, featuring an unassuming employee who’d do anything to make the guilty pay.
Kala by Colin Walsh
In Kinlough, a seaside town on Ireland’s west coast, three old friends – Helen, Joe, and Mush – are reunited for the first time in years. In the summer of 2003, they were part of an inseparable group with reckless Kala Lanann as their ringleader. Soon after that summer, Kala disappeared without a trace.
Now, fifteen years later, human remains have been discovered in the woods. What’s more, two more girls have gone missing. As the past and present collide, the friends are forced to accept their complicity and try to stop the past from repeating itself.
Happiness Falls by Angie Kim
Read Happiness Falls for… a page-turning story of a missing father, the family who thought they knew him, and a clock-ticking investigation full of shocking twists.
When her father and younger brother Eugene don’t return from a walk in a nearby park, hyper-analytical twenty-year-old Mia isn’t initially concerned. It could be for any number of reasons.
However, when Eugene returns alone and covered in blood, it’s clear that something awful has happened – but as Eugene has the rare genetic condition Angelman syndrome, he cannot speak.
Full of powerful questions about family, love, and language, Happiness Falls is both a mystery thriller, a family drama, and a highly original novel from the author of Miracle Creek.
Stone Cold Fox by Rachel Koller Croft
Read Stone Cold Fox for… a compelling new mystery thriller for 2023 about an ambitious woman who’s ready to cash in on what she’s earned.
Bea’s well-versed in the art of swindling men – her mother made sure of that. Now, she’s ready to escape her shadow and disappear into the quiet bliss of marriage. Her target? Boring and blue-blooded Collin Case, the offspring of one of the country’s wealthiest families.
However, what begins as a straightforward goal turns into a dangerous chase, and the truth of Bea’s past threatens to ruin everything.
On the Savage Side by Tiffany McDaniel
Read On the Savage Side for… a fearless elegy for missing women everywhere from the bestselling author of Betty, inspired by an unsolved true story in Ohio.
In this new thriller, six women have gone missing – mothers, daughters, and sisters. Now, twin sisters Arcade and Daffodil are likely to be the next victims. As they struggle to reckon with the past, can they keep each other safe while danger circles closer?
Unnatural History by Jonathan Kellerman
Read Unnatural History for… a gripping crime thriller for 2023 from Jonathan Kellerman, bestselling master of suspense. This is (impressively) Book 38 in the Alex Delaware series, but can easily be read as a standalone.
As soon as Lieutenant Milo Sturgis and Psychologist Alex Delaware discover the body of a photographer in an LA warehouse, they’re set on the path of a complex and dangerous case.
The victim had just received rave media attention for his latest project showcasing homeless people living out their ‘dreams’, but others saw the work as crass exploitation. Did this have something to do with it? Or was the threat in the victim’s own family?
Holly (Holly Gibney #3) by Stephen King
Read Holly for… the gripping latest installment of the storytelling master’s Holly Gibney series for 2023.
Holly Gibney is one of Stephen King’s most intelligent, compelling, and tough characters. Over the course of the series so far, we’ve witnessed her transition from a shy recluse to a feisty private detective.
Now in the chilling third book, Holly is on her own against a pair of terrible and brilliantly disguised adversaries. It’s time to summon all her formidable talents to outmaneuver her ruthless opponents.
Penance by Eliza Clark
Read Penance for… a marvellously compelling new thriller for anyone who adores unreliable narrators.
What really happened to sixteen-year-old Joan Wilson a decade ago in Crow-on-Sea?
Navigating the accounts of the small seaside town’s inhabitants, this dizzying new thriller places us in the hands of journalist Alec Z. Carelli. He’s adamant that this is the definitive version of the story that left the town in turmoil. But how much of it is really true?
The Maid’s Diary by Loreth Anne White
Read The Maid’s Diary for… a(nother) new thriller about a maid who can’t help crossing the boundaries of her job that’s gathered thousands of five-star reviews on Goodreads.
“Invisible girl” Kit Darling is a maid who can’t stop snooping in her wealthy clients’ closely guarded lives. However, Kit’s harmless hobby turns dark when she witnesses something she can’t unsee.
Enter cop Mallory Van Alst, who’s called to a luxury waterfront home where there’s been an attack so awful that the victim is unlikely to be alive. But something doesn’t add up. There isn’t a body. The homeowners are gone. And the maid is missing too.
The Villa by Rachel Hawkins
Read The Villa for… gothic suspense at an Italian villa with a dark history, inspired by the deadly summer Percy and Mary Shelley spent with Lord Byron at a Lake Geneva castle.
As kids, Emily and Chess were inseparable. But now they’re in their 30s, they’ve grown apart. So when Chess suggests a girls’ trip to a high-end villa in Italy, Emily jumps at the chance to reconnect.
Their villa might be luxurious now, but in 1974, it was rented for the summer by a notorious rock star, Noel Gordon – a summer that ended in brutal consequences.
As Emily digs into the villa’s complicated history, she begins to think there might be more to the story. But as secrets come to light, equally dangerous betrayals from the present emerge and other lives are at risk.
What Lies in the Woods by Kate Alice Marshall
Read What Lies in the Woods for… a twisty psychological thriller about friendship, secrets, betrayal, and lies from the past that threaten to resurface.
Twenty-two years ago, best friends Naomi, Cassidy, and Olivia spoke up to put away the culprit of some terrible crimes. They were heroes, but they were also liars.
For decades, they’ve kept this secret, but now Olivia wants to tell, and Naomi wants to find out what really happened – no matter how dangerous that is.
Delicate Condition by Danielle Valentine
As the inspiration for American Horror Story: Delicate, fans of American Horror Story will love this new thriller for 2023.
Dark, tense, and absolutely toe-curling, Delicate Condition is the unsettling story of one woman’s determination to have a child of her own. When she finally falls pregnant, it will either be a dream come true or a waking nightmare.
Birnam Wood by Eleanor Catton
Released ten years after the Booker Prize-winning The Luminaries, Eleanor Catton’s new novel is a psychological thriller about a sometimes-criminal, sometimes-philanthropic guerilla gardening group: Birnam Wood.
This group of activist gardeners (yep) in small-town New Zealand sneakily plant crops wherever they can. When they find a farm that seems abandoned, they think they’ve hit the jackpot – they finally have a way to secure their future.
That’s until they discover that an American billionaire is planning to build his end-of-the-world bunker here. Soon, the plot twists in a dramatic new direction.
For more gripping page-turners to add to your reading list, head over to…
- 14 unputdownable books you won’t be able to put down
- 15 horror books to get your spooky season off to a chilling start
- 15 gripping non-fiction books that read like fiction
- 18 of the best vacation reads for 2023
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