13 Thrilling Books Like The Silent Patient

Fans of Alex Michaelides’ blockbuster thriller will devour these dark and edgy reads.

The Silent Patient is one of the most compelling psychological thriller releases in recent memory. Alex Michaelides’ debut novel, about a famous artist’s act of violence and the forensic psychotherapist determined to understand her motive, was an instant New York Times bestseller and won Best Mystery & Thriller in the 2019 Goodreads Choice Awards. If that weren’t enough, The Silent Patient is also headed for the silver screen courtesy of Annapurna and Brad Pitt’s production company, Plan B Entertainment.

While we eagerly await news about the movie – and the June 2021 publication of Michaelides’ next thriller, The Maidens – we compiled a list of books like The Silent Patient that will satisfy your hunger for suspense. Here are 13 taut and twisty tales that fans of The Silent Patient are sure to enjoy.

By Brandon Miller

The Whisper Man

By Alex North

Lock your windows. Alex North’s terrifying tale will send chills down your spine, just like The Silent Patient. After the death of his wife, Tom Kennedy moves with his son Jake to the small town of Featherbank. Tom hopes to make a fresh start, but darkness lurks around the corner. Featherbank was once the stomping ground of serial killer Frank Carter, nicknamed “The Whisper Man,” because he lured his young victims out of their homes by whispering through their windows at night. Carter was caught years ago, but is the town’s blood-soaked nightmare really over? It isn’t long before a young boy goes missing… and Jake starts hearing whispers at night.

The Guest List

By Lucy Foley

Alex Michaelides loved Lucy Foley’s The Guest List – in fact, he said, “It gave me the same waves of happiness I get from curling up with a classic Christie.” Foley employs alternating narrators to tell her wickedly clever tale, offering everything a reader could want in a killer murder mystery: a doomed wedding, an isolated setting, an Agatha Christie-esque cast of suspects, and one very dead body. Just like The Silent Patient, it will keep you guessing about the true nature of the crime until you reach the very last page.

Sharp Objects

By Gillian Flynn

Chances are you’ve seen the HBO adaptation of Sharp Objects starring Amy Adams. Even so, we highly recommend you reach for Gillian Flynn’s debut novel for an exhilarating reading experience. Sharp Objects follows Camille Preaker, a journalist who must reckon with her troubled family history and deep psychological issues when she travels back to her hometown to cover a murder case. Like The Silent Patient, Sharp Objects is threaded with twists and turns that will keep you reading long into the night. The characters are enigmatic, and the small-town setting provides the perfect backdrop for its mesmerizing story.

Night Film

By Marisha Pessl

Marisha Pessl’s bestselling novel Night Film is a haunting thriller about one journalist’s obsession with a perplexing death. When Ashley Cordova, the daughter of a reclusive cult horror filmmaker, is found dead in an abandoned warehouse, the authorities rule it a suicide. But journalist Scott McGrath is convinced that something far more disturbing struck the seemingly cursed Cordova clan. What really happened to Ashley, and why hasn’t her father been seen in public in 30 years? Readers drawn in by The Silent Patient’s beguiling narrative will love disappearing into Pessl’s dark and suspenseful literary world.

Shutter Island

By Dennis Lehane

Much like The Silent Patient, Shutter Island delves into the darkest corners of the human psyche. Who can be trusted? Who is in control? In this atmospheric mystery, Dennis Lehane explores such questions in a way that will shock and terrify. Lehane is an award-winning author known for novels like Mystic River and Gone, Baby, Gone – both of which were also made into successful movies. Shutter Island is perhaps his most nightmarish narrative.

Defending Jacob

By William Landay

William Landay’s Defending Jacob, which was recently turned into an Emmy-nominated streaming series, is the perfect legal thriller for fans of The Silent Patient’s ever-shifting tale of guilt and innocence. The novel focuses on Andy Barber, an assistant district attorney dealing with a shocking crime that hits too close to home. He strongly believes in the accused’s innocence – which makes sense, since the accused is his own son, Jacob. But uncertainty creeps in as damning evidence comes to light. Soon Andy and his wife, Laurie, are forced ask themselves how far they’re willing to go to defend their own child.

The Woman in Cabin 10

By Ruth Ware

Like Alex Michaelides, Ruth Ware is a celebrated thriller author whose cleverly constructed narratives have been compared to Agatha Christie’s best mysteries. Read The Woman in Cabin 10, Ware’s instant New York Times bestseller, and it’s easy to see why. The novel follows Lo Blacklock, a travel writer sent on a luxury cruise across the North Sea. It sounds like a dream job, yet troubled waters lie ahead. Soon the weather turns treacherous, and Blacklock witnesses a woman being pushed overboard. But her desperate attempts to find help are met with bafflement, as all of the ship’s guests are accounted for. Now Blacklock must figure out if what she saw was just a terrifying dream or an all-too-real nightmare.

The Widow

By Fiona Barton

Similar to The Silent Patient, The Widow follows a woman, Jean, who confronts dark truths about her life in the wake of her husband’s death. And in The Widow, Jean has also been silent – silent about her true feelings, about her marriage, and about her husband’s crimes. Shocking marital secrets rise to the surface in this compelling novel about the lies we tell ourselves and the truths we believe.

I See You

By Clare Mackintosh

 Clare Mackintosh’s I See You is full of puzzling twists, which makes it the perfect read for fans of The Silent Patient. While reading through the local paper on her commute home, Zoe Walker is shocked to see a photo of herself featured in a classified ad for a dating website. Now she’s in a race to figure out why she’s been chosen, and why all of the other women appearing in the ads are being targeted by a violent predator.

Come Closer

By Sara Gran

The parallels between Come Closer and The Silent Patient are clear. Not only are they both spectacular psychological thrillers, they also feature women in seemingly happy marriages who suddenly snap. In Come Closer, that woman is Amanda, an architect, who starts acting in strange and troubling ways: hearing voices, having unsettling dreams, and even burning her husband with a cigarette. Is she coming undone, or has something possessed her from within?

Behind Her Eyes

By Sarah Pinborough

Sarah Pinborough’s Behind Her Eyes, which was recently adapted into a Netflix original series, is sure to please fans of The Silent Patient, as it has a similarly wicked plot packed with surprises. The story follows Louise, a single mom who gets entangled in the messy domestic life of her new boss, David, and his wife, Adele. But don’t get it twisted – or do, as the plot takes you on a ride – because this is not your typical love triangle storyline.

Then She Was Gone

By Lisa Jewell

Ten years ago, Laurel Mack’s youngest daughter vanished without a trace. The disappearance devastated the Mack family and continues to haunt Laurel to this day. Now Laurel is trying to pick up the pieces and mend her shattered life. A chance encounter with a man at a café promises a new beginning—that is, until Laurel meets the man’s daughter, a child who viscerally reminds her of her missing girl. In Then She Was Gone, Lisa Jewell masterfully examines a family yearning for answers, unpacking the pieces of the puzzle in sophisticated and surprising ways, similar to the search for the truth in The Silent Patient.

Behind Closed Doors

By B.A. Paris

A lot of thrillers feature the word “behind” in the title, and we think there’s a reason for this: As humans, we want to know what’s happening behind the facade, beyond what we can easily see. The Silent Patient unravels the mystery of a domestic murder; B.A. Paris’s Behind Closed Doors peeks inside a marriage that has secrets to hide. Jack and Grace – are they the perfect couple, or are appearances deceiving?

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