The best books for the steep cliff page-turners

Kate Watterson Author Of The Lake House
By Kate Watterson

Who am I?

Kate Watterson is the author of thriller novels for various publishers, and has always been a fan of the suspense genre. Good tension and a bit of danger balanced by an investigator who is on the trail, and she turns pages into the night. It is all about the hunt and the solution in her opinion, and of course, being perched on the edge of your seat.


I wrote...

The Lake House

By Kate Watterson,

Book cover of The Lake House

What is my book about?

Three friends with secrets. One luxurious lake house vacation. A killer on the loose. Lauren, Drew and Rob go on a relaxing vacation that turns into a nightmare. As Lauren sunbathes by the lake, she sees the man from next door lugging something heavy into a boat. The night before, Lauren thought she heard a woman screaming. What is their rich and famous neighbor hiding? Women are vanishing in this beautiful corner of Tennessee, full of woods and water. Detective Chris Bailey has his hands full. He's investigating a drowning from last summer. The woman was never identified. But a pattern is emerging. Another body surfaces. The killer will stop at nothing to stay hidden. Will Lauren be the next victim? And can she handle the fact both her friends are in love with her?

The books I picked & why

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Eyes of Prey

By John Sandford,

Book cover of Eyes of Prey

Why this book?

Let’s talk about memorable beginnings and I am talking about the kind that will keep you awake at night. Sanford is gritty and he really pushes the edge with his villains. On that note, he really pushes the edge with his protagonists as well, because Lucas Davenport is one of my favorite cops. Take one very smart (but seriously disturbed villain) and one very smart (but intense cop) and pit them against each other.

As Lucas weaves through the unfathomable workings of the brain of someone who is truly unhinged, he encounters an unholy marriage of two killers who operate on a separate plane yet have a common goal and the result is chilling to say the least.

The Prey novels are never for the faint of heart, but always fast-paced and well-written, suspense being the end game each time.


The Walker in Shadows

By Barbara Michaels,

Book cover of The Walker in Shadows

Why this book?

This book has everything; atmosphere, a masterful voice, a definite sense of history and place, and a good old-fashioned reason for how the plot unfolds. The mystery is revealed at the perfect pace, with small snippets and the characters are an interesting mixture of different generations so there is a dynamic that flows through the story is an ebb and flow of perspective.

A touch of paranormal is one of her signatures and it really works here.

I just couldn’t put it down. If you crave a few chills and a desire to look over your shoulder with some trepidation after the lights go out, I highly recommend it. Ms. Michaels handles that perfectly.


Castle Skull

By John Dickson Carr,

Book cover of Castle Skull

Why this book?

If as a suspense fan you missed this one, shame on you. Well, let’s picture a haunted castle on Rhine with a murdered magician, an eccentric cast of characters, a very astute detective, and his pragmatic American assistant investigating the crime.

Carr never cheats on plot and he always delivers on drama. His timing is just exquisite. You are given everything but you still have an ah-ha moment (usually more than one) as events unfold. It is a timeless setting and story tension so high that I could see the flicker of the lights and hear the rush of the river.

The twists are so unpredictable you are truly blindsided.

If you like a dramatic setting and unpredictable conflict, I recommend it.


For Kicks

By Dick Francis,

Book cover of For Kicks

Why this book?

When Daniel Roke takes on an unusual job he does it for monetary and personal reasons and has no idea he is risking his life. Dick Francis takes you from Australia to the world of English horseracing with a clever plot that is unexpected and has a really wicked twist. He also can deliver some villains that inspire visceral dislike like no other author and doesn’t let you down in this intense novel. Well done and kept me doing the infamous reading into the night.


The Neon Rain

By James Lee Burke,

Book cover of The Neon Rain

Why this book?

The first in the series of Dave Robicheaux novels, this is handled quite well. The main character is very human, flawed by his own admission by a battle with an addiction to alcohol, but nonetheless is a tough and competent cop who definitely sees—and knows well—the seedier side. Set in the deep south, Burke takes you there with description that is so evocative that you can feel it with every sense, and the danger as the story unravels into a tale of corruption and bloody violence. I really wanted the main character to win this battle and it was one almost literally to the death. If you like great writing and to sit on the edge of your seat (near the bayou, so be careful), this is a must-read.


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