The best 2-fer supernatural mysteries with dual storylines

Mae Clair Author Of Cusp of Night
By Mae Clair

Who am I?

I’ve loved mysteries since childhood. That passion started with silly attractions like Scooby-Doo, Dark Shadows, and Nancy Drew. As I grew older, my love of mystery expanded to include the “what if” elements of folklore and urban legends. I’ve written two, 3-book series employing dual timelines, each wrapped in multiple layers of folklore. Crafting separate plotlines then weaving them into a tidy ending takes patience. I enjoy reading books that are well-executed and if they include a touch of the supernatural, all the better. My passion for urban legends has led me to give presentations to local community groups and also to engage in travel when needed for on-site research.

I wrote...

Cusp of Night

By Mae Clair,

Book cover of Cusp of Night

What is my book about?

Recently settled in Hode’s Hill, Maya Sinclair is enthralled by the town’s folklore, especially the legend about a centuries-old monster responsible for several horrific murders. The Fiend has evolved into the stuff of urban myth, along with one of the creature’s first victims—a nineteenth-century spiritualist. Lucida Glass was known as the Blue Lady of Hode’s Hill due to a genetic condition.

When several new attacks occur, rumors abound the Fiend has returned. It isn’t long before Maya becomes caught up in piecing together a puzzle where past and present collide in a world of twisted secrets, insanity, and an evil that refuses to die—all tied to the mysterious Blue Lady of Hode’s Hill.

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The books I picked & why

The Night Sister

By Jennifer McMahon,

Book cover of The Night Sister

Why did I love this book?

My first experience reading a book with dual storylines, this novel held me spellbound cover to cover. McMahon has since become an auto-buy author for me, thanks to this fantastical story that puts a magnifying glass on the life of two sisters, a childhood friend, and an unexplained disappearance. The story moves between past and present and revolves around the Tower Motel in Vermont, now a ruined shell that refuses to yield its secrets. Secrets the girls discovered while playing games there as children. 

An unexpected splash of the paranormal and the use of letters from one sister to Mr. Hitchcock (yes, that Hitchcock) add the perfect touch to this disturbing gem.

By Jennifer McMahon,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Night Sister as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the New York Times bestselling author Jennifer McMahon (The Winter People) comes an atmospheric, gripping, and suspenseful tale that probes the bond between sisters and the peril of keeping secrets.

The Tower Motel was once a thriving attraction of rural Vermont. Today it lies in disrepair, alive only in the memories of the three women—Amy, Piper, and Piper’s kid sister, Margot—who played there as children. They loved exploring the abandoned rooms … until the day their innocent games uncovered something dark and twisted that ruined their friendship forever.

Now, Amy stands accused of committing a horrific crime, and the…

Home Before Dark

By Riley Sager,

Book cover of Home Before Dark

Why did I love this book?

Remember The Amityville Horror? Welcome to Baneberry Hall. Maggie Holt spent twenty days living in Baneberry Hall when she was five but has no memory of what sent her family fleeing in the middle of the night. What she does know is that her father wrote a book that turned into a bestseller about the supernatural events which took place. “The book” has shaped her life ever since.

When she inherits the Baneberry Hall, she’s determined to get to the bottom of what really took place the night her family left. Alternating between past and present, the story unfolds with plenty of twists, scene after scene primed for goosebumps. The shocking ending proves why Sager is such a master of suspense!

By Riley Sager,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Home Before Dark as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In the latest thriller from New York Times bestseller Riley Sager, a woman returns to the house made famous by her father’s bestselling horror memoir. Is the place really haunted by evil forces, as her father claimed? Or are there more earthbound—and dangerous—secrets hidden within its walls?

What was it like? Living in that house.

Maggie Holt is used to such questions. Twenty-five years ago, she and her parents, Ewan and Jess, moved into Baneberry Hall, a rambling Victorian estate in the Vermont woods. They spent three weeks there before fleeing in the dead of night, an ordeal Ewan later…

The Perfect Guests

By Emma Rous,

Book cover of The Perfect Guests

Why did I love this book?

I’m a huge fan of the board game Clue. The “present” timeline in this story provides an excellent tip of the hat when lead character Sadie, a bit actress, agrees to assume the role of “Miss Lamb” at an old mansion known as Raven Hall. She attends with a collection of others (who take on roles like Miss Mouse, Professor Owl, Colonel Otter, etc.) as part of a trial run for a business that hosts murder mystery parties. Great set-up, right?

Three time periods twine in the plot, one which includes a bizarre game of a different sort that has far-reaching consequences, stretching from past to present. The author does a brilliant job of foreshadowing, planting subtle clues that deliver staggering surprises by the end of the story.

By Emma Rous,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Perfect Guests as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The USA Today bestselling author of The Au Pair returns with another delicious, twisty novel—about a grand estate with many secrets, an orphan caught in a web of lies, and a young woman playing a sinister game.

1988. Beth Soames is fourteen years old when her aunt takes her to stay at Raven Hall, a rambling manor in the isolated East Anglian fens. The Averells, the family who lives there, are warm and welcoming, and Beth becomes fast friends with their daughter, Nina. At times, Beth even feels like she's truly part of the family...until they ask her to help…

Rock Paper Scissors

By Alice Feeney,

Book cover of Rock Paper Scissors

Why did I love this book?

I’d never heard of face-blindness before, but it plays a huge role in this twisty novel set in a snowbound setting. Married couple, Adam and Amelia, take a trip to a remote area of Scotland in a last-ditch effort to save their marriage. Adam has the added problem of face-blindness, an affliction that makes it impossible for him to remember faces—even his wife’s.

The setting is a converted chapel replete with a crumbling bell tower, unheated rooms, and the whisper of supernatural happenings. The past unfolds in a series of letters Adam’s wife writes to him every year on their anniversary. Throughout the book, Adam and Amelia play rock, paper, scissors with their own unique spin. I love how the game factors into the ending which delivers a jaw-dropping reveal.

By Alice Feeney,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Rock Paper Scissors as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?


“Feeney lives up to her reputation as the “queen of the twist”…This page-turner will keep you guessing.” —Real Simple
Think you know the person you married? Think again…

Things have been wrong with Mr and Mrs Wright for a long time. When Adam and Amelia win a weekend away to Scotland, it might be just what their marriage needs. Self-confessed workaholic and screenwriter Adam Wright has lived with face blindness his whole life. He can’t recognize friends or family, or even his own wife.

Every anniversary the couple exchange traditional gifts--paper, cotton, pottery, tin--and each…

Book cover of Cold Dark Night: Legends of Madeira

Why did I love this book?

This small-town mystery is the first in a new series. Set in Madeira, New Mexico, newly arrived Tami Montgomery learns the old Victorian home she and her husband purchased has an unsettling history—a number of Madeira’s police chiefs lived in the property, and most met with untimely deaths. Tami’s husband, Jason, is Madeira’s new police chief. 

A former newspaper editor, Tami becomes involved with Madeira’s historical society, a commitment that has her digging into her home’s past and the lives of the people who lived there. Hall weaves elements from the 1800s with the present, sprinkling her plot with lunar legends, dusty history, old grudges, and murder. Though the first in a series, Cold Dark Night delivers a complete story with a satisfying ending.

By Joan Hall,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Cold Dark Night as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

New husband, new house, new town… and a new mystery to solve.

Tami Montgomery thought her police chief husband was going to be the only investigator in the family when she gave up her journalism career and moved with him to Madeira, New Mexico.

But after the historical society asks her to write stories for a book celebrating the town’s one-hundred fiftieth year, she becomes embroiled in a new mystery. If she can’t solve this one, she could lose everything. Her research uncovers a spate of untimely deaths of local law enforcement officials. Further digging reveals a common link—they all…

5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in the supernatural, family secrets, and sisters?

9,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about the supernatural, family secrets, and sisters.

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And, 3 books we think you will enjoy!

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