15 Thriller Books Like The Silent Patient

By Brandon Miller
A collection of thriller and suspense novel covers spread out against a blue background.

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.

Listen for the Lie by Amy Tintera with GMA Seal

Listen for the Lie

By Amy Tintera

Michaelides praised Amy Tintera for pulling off an “extremely successful high-wire act” with this gripping thriller, delivering a narrative that balances “between dark comedy and darker thrills.” Readers who enjoy an enigmatic protagonist (or is this an antagonist?) at the center of their mystery will love Lucy Chase, the character at the heart of Listen for the Lie. Years ago, something terrible happened in Lucy’s Texas hometown, but she can’t remember a thing about it. All she knows is that someone murdered her best friend Savvy and that afterward she was found covered in Savvy’s blood. Did Lucy kill her best friend? Everyone in town certainly thinks so. When a hit true crime podcast reopens the cold case and attempts to solve the mystery of Savvy’s murder, Lucy must confront her shadowy past once and for all. Just like The Silent Patient with its shocking plot twists and jaw-dropping revelations, the truth in Listen for the Lie is never what it seems. Add to that the tantalizing possibility that the novel’s narrator might also be the killer, and you’ve got yourself a truly captivating read.

granite harbor cover alex michaelides quote

Granite Harbor

By Peter Nichols

If you love the edgy atmosphere and thrilling narrative complexity of The Silent Patient, you’re sure to devour Granite Harbor. Peter Nichols’s page-turning crime thriller centers on a string of murders in a small coastal Maine town, moving between the past and the present, and introducing a cast of characters as it unspools its creepy tale. The ritualistic murder of a local teenager rocks the close-knit community of Granite Harbor. When a second body turns up, it’s clear that a serial killer is on the loose. Two single parents race to find answers and protect their children from becoming future victims: Alex, a former novelist turned the town’s lone detective, and Isabel, who works at a nearby archaeological site where the body is found. If that’s not enough to hook you, Michaelides himself praises Granite Harbor as “grisly, unsettling, and dark ― and also a beautifully written, deeply felt, and moving tale of family relationships.”

Intriguing book cover for 'the whisper man' by alex north featuring a butterfly silhouette made of fingerprint patterns and a solitary figure beneath, teasing a mysterious and suspenseful novel.

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 image is a cover of the novel "the guest list" by lucy foley. it features a dark, stormy background with a foreboding sense of mystery, accentuated by the image of an island or rocky outcrop shrouded in mist or fog. the title and author's name are prominently displayed in bold, attention-grabbing fonts that suggest suspense and intrigue. a sticker or badge indicating a recommendation by reese's book club is also visible, suggesting the book has been selected for its engaging qualities.

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.

A book cover of gillian flynn's novel "sharp objects" featuring the title and author's name in large, bold prints, with critical acclaim quotes and an award sticker.

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.

Cover of the novel 'night film' by marisha pessl, featuring a dark and mysterious theme with a close-up of a woman's face partially obscured by shadow and text.

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.

The cover of dennis lehane's novel "shutter island," featuring a dark and foreboding image with water and a silhouette of a structure's entrance, evoking a sense of mystery and isolation.

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.

A book cover for "defending jacob" by william landay, featuring a somber image of a person sitting alone on a park bench, overlooking a stormy field, symbolizing contemplation or isolation amidst a turbulent scenario.

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" book cover by ruth ware, depicting a suspenseful and moody scene with water droplets on a glass surface, suggesting a mystery or thriller theme within its pages.

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.

A book cover for the novel "the widow" which is a new york times bestseller, with high praise quoted from stephen king, comparing it favorably to 'gone girl' and 'the girl on the train'. the cover design features a stark, wintery tree landscape with a blurred figure in the distance, conveying a sense of mystery and suspense.

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.

A book cover of clare mackintosh's "i see you," featuring the title and author's name with blurbs from the sunday times and paula hawkins, set against a vivid backdrop of moody, rain-spattered city nightlife colors.

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.

The image shows the cover of a book titled "come closer" by sara gran. the cover features a red, textured backdrop with a close-up of a woman's face partially obscured or overlaid by what appears to be a smudged or brushed red substance. the title and author's name are displayed in white lettering. the cover conveys a sense of mystery and possibly thriller or horror elements in the story.

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: a suspenseful and eerie novel by sarah pinborough, now an international netflix original series, featuring an intense close-up of a woman's eye, hinting at the psychological thriller 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.

A book cover for the novel "then she was gone" by lisa jewell, featuring a stark white background with a silhouetted tree, its branches adorned with red leaves, possibly signifying mystery or drama.

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.

A mysterious and suspenseful novel cover featuring the title "behind closed doors" by b.a. paris with a backdrop of a seemingly ordinary door that suggests dark secrets or a chilling narrative hidden within.

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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