The most recommended books about blackmail

Who picked these books? Meet our 29 experts.

29 authors created a book list connected to blackmail, and here are their favorite blackmail books.
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What type of blackmail book?


Last Argument of Kings

By Joe Abercrombie,

Book cover of Last Argument of Kings

Lee Hunt Author Of Bed of Rose and Thorns

From the list on fantasy with the most beautiful endings.

Who am I?

My first two lessons as a geophysicist were confusing opposites. My supervisor told me that I must carry my investigations to professional conclusions, while the very best physicists showed me that good scientists are the most parsimonious about what they conclude. It's a battle between humility and the need to tell a story. We human beings crave a nice, neat ending, and we often only get one in fantasy, for the real world is complex. It was this insight that led me to start every story I ever wrote with at least a concept for the ending. If we are going to go anywhere with our narratives, we better first consider where that is.

Lee's book list on fantasy with the most beautiful endings

Why did Lee love this book?

Sometimes we think we are reading fiction as an exercise in entertainment, and fantasy as a guilty pleasure. Abercrombie is a favorite writer of mine because his work does all that, but he also surprises with sharp insight every single time. Last Argument of Kings ends his First Law Trilogy with the most surprising reveal of all—that the moral center does not exist. Not at all. All the blood and death that his characters have dealt out and survived are not in service to some higher good. More than just an exercise in cynicism or a service to violence, this story shines a light on power, politics and the people who stand atop the heap. And somehow Abercrombie does this all while making you laugh and shake your head in amazement.

By Joe Abercrombie,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Last Argument of Kings as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The end is coming.

Logen Ninefingers might only have one more fight in him - but it's going to be a big one. Battle rages across the North, the King of the Northmen still stands firm, and there's only one man who can stop him. His oldest friend, and his oldest enemy. It's past time for the Bloody-Nine to come home.

With too many masters and too little time, Superior Glokta is fighting a different kind of war. A secret struggle in which no-one is safe, and no-one can be trusted. His days with a sword are far behind him.…

The Quiet Game

By Greg Iles,

Book cover of The Quiet Game

Neil Turner Author Of A House on Liberty Street

From the list on underdogs overcoming impossible odds.

Who am I?

I’m a Canadian thriller and suspense novelist with an abiding affinity for stories of good ultimately overcoming evil. I’m partial to reluctant heroes battling powerful entities that are inflicting injustice. If our protagonist is flawed and forced to overcome internal demons and/or challenges, so much the better! My Tony Valenti thrillers feature a mom-and-pop law firm known as Lawyers to Little People and Lost Causes, so I know a thing or two about this type of book. Characters using brains, integrity, and bravery—moral and/or physical—fascinate me every time.

Neil's book list on underdogs overcoming impossible odds

Why did Neil love this book?

The Quiet Game introduces a troubled Penn Cage, who returns with his daughter to his hometown of Natchez, Mississippi when his father lands in trouble. For Penn, family is sacrosanct. Iles uses Natchez brilliantly to support characterization, atmosphere, and plot. Events unfold quickly in a series of twists and turns that thrill the reader and severely test Penn as he struggles to unearth his father’s connection to a horrific Natchez mystery that the town is determined to keep buried. I admire how Penn battles relentlessly on behalf of his father, doggedly pursues a truth that frightens him, and protects his daughter in the face of growing condemnation and danger. He hews to his moral compass even when it would be expedient to abandon it.

By Greg Iles,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The first thriller in the New York Times No.1 bestselling series featuring Penn Cage: a prosecutor in a corrupt system, a husband whose wife has died, and a father who must protect his daughter. 'An engrossing, page-turning ride' (Jeffery Deaver).

Don't say a word...

Natchez, Mississippi. A city of old money and older sins. A place where a thirty-year-old crime lies buried, and everyone plays the quiet game. But on man cannot stay silent.

Returning to his home town, former prosecuting attorney Penn Cage is stunned to discover that his father is being blackmailed over a decades-old murder.

Negotiating the…

Book cover of The Affair of the Mysterious Letter

Lianyu Tan Author Of Captive in the Underworld: A Dark Lesbian Romance Novel

From the list on queer stories inspired by myths, legends, and classics.

Who am I?

I loved books as a kid, especially fantasy books, but could never find anyone like me within their pages. I’m a lesbian Chinese writer who adores stories about messed-up, complicated queer people. I’m thrilled by the range of books available now that feature queer, messy characters. We all deserve representation, and to me that means representation that’s complex, that encompasses the ugly and the beautiful. One of my goals as an author is to make you fall in love with monsters—brutal, flawed women who may not deserve love, but who demand it all the same.

Lianyu's book list on queer stories inspired by myths, legends, and classics

Why did Lianyu love this book?

I adore Sherlock pastiches, and this is one of my favorites with its high magic urban fantasy setting, pan sorceress Sherlock, and gay trans man Watson. Obviously, the leads aren’t romantically entwined. Instead, the plot revolves around Sherlock’s ex-paramour and current client, pan Irene Adler, whose impending marriage to a woman is being threatened by blackmail.

It’s joyously irreverent with a ton of literary allusions and dear Watson’s earnest and wholesome narrative voice. If you enjoy magic with your mystery, this book is for you.

By Alexis Hall,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Affair of the Mysterious Letter as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this charming, witty, and weird fantasy novel, Alexis Hall pays homage to Sherlock Holmes with a new twist on those renowned characters.

Upon returning to the city of Khelathra-Ven after five years fighting a war in another universe, Captain John Wyndham finds himself looking for somewhere to live, and expediency forces him to take lodgings at 221b Martyrs Walk. His new housemate is Ms. Shaharazad Haas, a consulting sorceress of mercurial temperament and dark reputation.

When Ms. Haas is enlisted to solve a case of blackmail against one of her former lovers, Miss Eirene Viola, Captain Wyndham is drawn…

The Inheritance

By R. Franklin James,

Book cover of The Inheritance

Michelle Corbier Author Of Murder is Revealing

From the list on mystery for mature Black women.

Who am I?

Like myself, each of these novels involved older professional Black women protagonists. Each of these authors presented multidimensional women experiencing circumstances that surpass culture and ethnicity. As women age, not only do we take on new roles, but we physically and emotionally change. I appreciate books with relatable characters coping with issues I experience—menopause, aging parents, an empty nest. Reading mysteries with fictional characters dealing with situations I experience makes me feel less isolated. 

Michelle's book list on mystery for mature Black women

Why did Michelle love this book?

Hudson and Lowell Legacy Consultants is a genealogy business formed by Johanna Hudson. The first line of the novel reads, “... clients don’t consider… that genealogy outcomes can be disappointingly unpredictable.” This statement is a prelude to the conflict weaving throughout the novel as the protagonist becomes embroiled in murder. Johanna makes a career move to pursue a new business opportunity. I left clinical medicine to have more time for writing. It was a difficult choice because I enjoyed taking care of people.

By R. Franklin James,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A 30 year-old genealogist is forced to face the pain of her own past while discovering that her talents can be used to solve more than her clients' ancestor family lines -- including blackmail and murder.

Genealogist Johanna Hudson discovers that the intersection of unintended consequences and murder is unavoidable, and her determination to find an heir puts her in the path of a killer who is just as determined to stop her.

Bliss & Blunder

By Victoria Gosling,

Book cover of Bliss & Blunder

Tom Pugh Author Of The Lord of Worlds

From Tom's 3 favorite reads in 2023.

Who am I?

Author Novelist Historian Book lover

Tom's 3 favorite reads in 2023

Why did Tom love this book?

In Bliss and Blunder, King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table return to England as a group of entitled, insecure techbros.

It might sound unlikely, but there’s true, literary magic at work as Gosling weaves England’s best-loved legends into the fabric of our present moment. Strange, fearless, and utterly convincing, there’s fun to be had in imagining (Sir Ga)Wayne drinking in the Green Knight or rummaging through Guinevere's Instagram account – but there’s anger, too.

Beneath the mythmaking, the story of Arthur is a story of power – the way it oozes and where it pools, who it celebrates, and who it destroys. We’re still as bewitched by the myths as we ever were – and the story hasn’t changed at all. 

By Victoria Gosling,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Bliss & Blunder as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'Exquisitely written and structurally bold ... a deeply impressive novel' Eva Dolan, author of This Is How It Ends

Selected for TLS Summer Books 2023

Arthur and Gwen married young. Twenty years on, Gwen's got it all: wealth, beauty, a famous husband who's the founder of Britain's most successful tech company, stables full of horses, millions of followers on Instagram, an unstable lover, a wayward son, a hoard of secrets, an aching heart, and a cyberstalking blackmailer who calls himself The Invisible Knight.

As the Wiltshire town of Abury prepares to celebrate the fortieth birthday of its favourite son, Morgan,…

Book cover of A Case of Blackmail in Belgravia

Sara Rosett Author Of Murder at Archly Manor

From the list on undiscovered 1920s historical mysteries.

Who am I?

My love of mysteries began with Nancy Drew and Trixie Belden. I moved on to Elizabeth Peters and Mary Stewart before discovering Agatha Christie and other Golden Age authors. My love of mysteries inspired me to try my hand at the genre, first with cozy mysteries then with historical mysteries. The 1920s is my favorite time period to read and write about. I’m fascinated by the way society was changing then, and I can’t resist an English country house murder. I’ve listed some of my favorite undiscovered mystery gems from the 1920s and hope you find them the bee’s knees! 

Sara's book list on undiscovered 1920s historical mysteries

Why did Sara love this book?

I’m always onboard for a mystery set in the exclusive circles of London society, and Freddy Pilkington-Soames, a young gentleman in 1920s London, is just the ticket when I want a fun, lighthearted read. Freddy’s mother ropes him into helping clear away a bothersome little matter, a dead body in her front hall. Before Freddy quite knows what’s happened, he’s interviewing suspects and tracking down clues. Although Clara Benson is a modern author, I love how she’s captured the tone and language of the lighter Golden Age mystery romps. A Case of Blackmail in Belgravia’s is breezy and lighthearted. It’s fun to be swept along with Freddy as he tries to untangle a web of blackmail among society’s upper crust.

By Clara Benson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Case of Blackmail in Belgravia as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

It's 1929, and Ticky Maltravers is the toast of London high society, adored by everyone—or so it seems, until somebody poisons him over dinner. Now it turns out that numerous people with secrets to hide had every reason to wish him dead. But which of them murdered him? For Freddy Pilkington-Soames, newspaper reporter and man-about-town, the question hits a little too close to home, thanks to an unfortunate drunken encounter with Ticky's corpse which he'd much rather the police didn't find out about—and thanks also to his exasperating mother Cynthia's seeming determination to get herself arrested by tampering with the…

Deal Breaker

By Harlan Coben,

Book cover of Deal Breaker

Janet Fix Author Of The Broken Soul

From the list on intriguing whodunits.

Who am I?

Writer, reader, editor, reviewer, publisher… those are all parts of me. With a lifetime of experience in the “words” industry, I have a pretty good handle on what makes a book not just good, but hot. I say this with the understanding that each reader brings their own histories to the reading experience, and what one person may like, another may not. Nonetheless, I offer you my professional and personal favorites in the mystery/thriller/suspense categories. It is my sincere hope that you find these books as addictive as I’d found them. Superb and clever writing, engaging characters, unpredictable plots—yes, please! Though I occasionally step outside my comfort zone, I'm consistently drawn back to these categories. 

Janet's book list on intriguing whodunits

Why did Janet love this book?

With this book began my true passion for mystery/thriller novels. I willingly tumbled through all the books Coben has written in this series with Myron Bolitar and his lofty sidekick, Win (Windsor Horne Lockwood III). Coben’s clever writing style and sports references captured my interest… and my reading heart for all the years that followed this. I simply couldn’t get enough of it. Still can’t! Coben is a master of words. 

By Harlan Coben,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked Deal Breaker as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The truth can get you killed... A stunning thriller from the SUNDAY TIMES bestselling author of SIX YEARS.

Investigator and sports agent Myron Bolitar is poised on the edge of the big-time. So is Christian Steele, a rookie quarterback and Myron's prized client. But when Christian gets a phone call from a former girlfriend, a woman who everyone, including the police, believes is dead, the deal starts to go sour.

Suddenly Myron is plunged into a baffling mystery of sex and blackmail. Trying to unravel the truth about a family's tragedy, a woman's secret and a man's lies, Myron is…


By Vincent Virga,

Book cover of Gaywyck

Larry Mellman Author Of The Man With Sapphire Eyes

From the list on historical fiction with a twist.

Who am I?

I have always loved historical fiction as a reader, but my passion to write it caught fire during the years I lived in Venice, Italy, when I discovered the curious institution of the ballot boy within the Byzantine complexities of the thousand-year Venetian Republic. Since ballot boys were randomly chosen over a period of six hundred years, choosing my particular Doge and ballot boy required a survey of the entire field before I circled in on Venice, 1368, IMHO the peak brilliance of that maritime empire. It is a peculiarity of history that the names of all 130 doges of Venice are recorded, but none of their ballot boys are mentioned. The challenge was irresistible. 

Larry's book list on historical fiction with a twist

Why did Larry love this book?

First published in 1980, Gaywyck was the first historical gay gothic romance. Virga, whose day job for forty years was as photo editor, turns his extraordinary eye on turn-of-the-last century New York.

The tangled lives, dark secrets, and mad love – all conventions of the romance genre – are stood on their heads in this reimagining. “I realized genre has no gender,” Virga says, and set about cannily reversing roles and inverting tropes to fashion a puzzle wrapped in an enigma of requited and unrequited love.

Gaywyck stands the test of time and remains a modern classic.   

By Vincent Virga,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Gaywyck is the first gay Gothic novel. Long out of print, this classic proved that genre knows no gender. Young, innocent Robert Whyte enters a Jane-Eyre world of secrets and deceptions when he is hired to catalog the vast library at Gaywyck, a mysterious ancestral mansion on Long Island, where he falls in love with its handsome and melancholy owner, Donough Gaylord. Robert's unconditional love is challenged by hidden evil lurking in the shadowy past crammed with dark sexual secrets sowing murder, blackmail, and mayhem in the great romantic tradition. As Armisted Maupin urged, “Read the son of a bitch!…

Slonim Woods 9

By Daniel Barban Levin,

Book cover of Slonim Woods 9: A Memoir

Emily Paulson Author Of Hey, Hun: Sales, Sisterhood, Supremacy, and the Other Lies Behind Multilevel Marketing

From the list on nonfiction about cults, scams, and schemes.

Who am I?

I spent 7 years in a commercial cult. I was indoctrinated into, rose to the top of, and finally escaped from a multilevel marketing company. When I started my exit, I wondered how I had become so brainwashed, which led me to do research into coercive control. I started to understand that different types of authoritarian control; behavior, information, thought, and emotional, drove me further into the cult and away from my outside friends and family. I read as many cult books and watched as many documentaries as I could find, and became fascinated with uncovering why people find themselves in the same situation I was in.  

Emily's book list on nonfiction about cults, scams, and schemes

Why did Emily love this book?

Once again I became interested in a book thanks to a documentary!

When I watched the documentary about Sarah Lawrence College, I wanted to know more. Daniel Barban Levin’s story really demonstrates how a fragile young mind can be influenced by someone with sinister intentions.

He vividly describes his time spent with a manipulative cult leader (Larry Ray), and his narrative disturbingly shows us just how easily something like this could've happened to us. Very sadly relatable, for people who lose their voice when they fall victim to gaslighting or abusive friends, mentors, or partners. 

By Daniel Barban Levin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Slonim Woods 9 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An “extraordinary” (Nylon) firsthand account of the creation of a modern cult and the costs paid by its young victims: a group of college roommates
“Intense . . . [a tale] of hard-won survival, and creating a life after the unimaginable.”—Salon

The inspiration for the Hulu docuseries Stolen Youth, directed by Zach Heinzerling and co-produced by Daniel Barban Levin

In September 2010, at the beginning of the academic year at Sarah Lawrence College, a sophomore named Talia Ray asked her roommates if her father could stay with them for a while. No one objected. Her father, Larry Ray, was just…


By Lisa Valdez,

Book cover of Passion

S.M. Harlow Author Of The Lover of The Opera

From the list on to fall in love with historical romance.

Who am I?

I’ve been in love with HR novels ever since my parents took me to a bookstore when I was fifteen, where for the first time, I stepped into an aisle filled with romance. It was love at first sight, as I searched for that one book that called to me. After finishing that book, my world had changed. Now, seventeen years later, as a published author for both New Age and Historical Romance, I still feverishly read romance books to continue feeding that internal flame of love and passion I still have for Historical Romance. I hope you enjoy the books on this list as much as I have.

S.M.'s book list on to fall in love with historical romance

Why did S.M. love this book?

Passion is a highly intense and passionate novel that transports you away from the traditional HR to a whole new world of an exotic and steamy love affair. The characters flourish together from hot-blooded lovers to hopelessly in love. This book carries all that you would hope to find in a historical romance, from lust, obsession, longing, and love with a happy conclusion. If you’re looking for all the qualities, and then some, in a historical romance, then this book will get you there! Truly unforgettable! I read this over a decade ago, and I still remember it fondly! But honestly, because of all the sensual sex scenes!

By Lisa Valdez,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

In her second year of mourning, lovely, young widow Passion Elizabeth Dare never dreamed she would be with a man again—and certainly not a complete stranger.

But amidst the crowds of London's Crystal Palace, Passion finds herself discreetly, yet insistently, pursued by a sensual gentleman who awakens her long-supressed desires. After a loveless marriage of restrained propriety, Passion abandons herself to true bliss for the first time.

Intoxicated by his encounter with the beautiful stranger, Mark Randolph Hawkmore, Earl of Langley, cannot wait to see her again. As a series of rapturous rendezvous follows, he and his mystery lover find…

Book cover of Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

Bhavik Sarkhedi Author Of The Unproposed Guy

From the list on romantic teen reads for those who are single.

Who am I?

Ever since I penned my first romantic tale Will You Walk A Mile?, I've been enamored with the complexities of young love. For me, writing isn't just a profession; it's akin to breathing. I live to write and write for a living, with a special fondness for narratives that explore the highs and lows of teen romance and human emotion. I have been that ‘teen guy’ next door. That same teenage wonder for love stories that first sparked my passion for writing has stayed with me, maturing into a deeper understanding.  to curate a list of teen novels that will tug at your heartstrings.

Bhavik's book list on romantic teen reads for those who are single

Why did Bhavik love this book?

The online mystery in this book is eerily reminiscent of the digital age we live in.

It felt like an updated version of the classic love story, something I aim to achieve in my own works—relatable yet unique. Plus, the book's celebration of love, irrespective of sexual orientation, is something I wholeheartedly stand behind.

By Becky Albertalli,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Love, Victor is now a major TV series on Dinsey+, set in the world of the hit film Love, Simon

The beloved, award-winning novel is now a major motion picture starring 13 Reasons Why's Katherine Langford and Everything, Everything's Nick Robinson.


Straight people should have to come out too. And the more awkward it is, the better.

Simon Spier is sixteen and trying to work out who he is - and what he's looking for.

But when one of his emails to the very distracting Blue falls into the wrong hands, things get all kinds of complicated.

Because, for…

Indecent Exposure

By David McClintick,

Book cover of Indecent Exposure: A True Story of Hollywood and Wall Street

Tom Santopietro Author Of The Sound of Music Story

From the list on real Hollywood and the movie industry.

Who am I?

Tom Santopietro is the author of eight books, including the New York Times Editor’s Choice Considering Doris Day, The Importance of Being Barbra, Sinatra in Hollywood, Why To Kill a Mockingbird Matters, and The Godfather Effect. A frequent media commentator and interviewer, he lectures on classic films and over the past thirty years has managed more than two dozen Broadway shows.

Tom's book list on real Hollywood and the movie industry

Why did Tom love this book?

McClintick makes the Hollywood boardroom scandal that began with David Begelman’s forgery of Cliff Robertson’s name on a $10,000 check, into a compulsively readable account of power run amok amongst  Hollywood-Wall Street executives. An expose of theft, cover-up, and blackmail, it is also a beautifully written, incisive portrait of men and women seduced by the glamor and power of Hollywood fame.

By David McClintick,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Indecent Exposure as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When the head of Columbia Pictures, David Begelman, got caught forging Cliff Robertson's name on a $10,000 check, it seemed, at first, like a simple case of embezzlement. It wasn't. The incident was the tip of the iceberg, the first hint of a scandal that shook Hollywood and rattled Wall Street. Soon powerful studio executives were engulfed in controversy; careers derailed; reputations died; and a ruthless, take-no-prisoners corporate power struggle for the world-famous Hollywood dream factory began.

First published in 1982, this now classic story of greed and lies in Tinseltown appears here with a stunning final chapter on Begelman's…

The End of Her

By Shari Lapena,

Book cover of The End of Her

Regina Buttner Author Of Down a Bad Road

From the list on love triangles that turn deadly.

Who am I?

I have a close girlfriend who was once involved with a man she wanted to marry. The trouble was, the guy was always hanging out with this other woman who he’d known since childhood. Just friends, he said. Nothing going on. Ha! The shenanigans they got up to were unbelievable, and extremely upsetting to my girlfriend, who eventually broke up with the cad. Her unlucky experience got me interested in the psychology of the love triangle, and why some people remain mired in these dead-end relationships. My reading jam is anything twisty and suspenseful, and what’s more fraught than a three-way competition for someone’s affections.

Regina's book list on love triangles that turn deadly

Why did Regina love this book?

This one had my head spinning right round, baby! Happy marriage, babies, a nice home—what more could a young wife ask for?

How about someone she can trust, for starters, and how ’bout her husband’s ex-lover quits coming around all the time, tattling tales of his murky past? It reminded me of an old friend of mine who fell in love with a guy she’d met through an online dating site. He claimed he was long divorced, but—whoops—was actually still married, and living with his estranged wife in separate parts of their house.

You can probably guess how that ended, but not this book. With every wild plot turn, I was grabbing for the Oh sh*t handle and gasping for breath.

By Shari Lapena,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

'The queen of the one-sit read' Linwood Barclay

'Shari Lapena is one of the best thriller writers in the business' Steve Cavanagh

'I tore through it. It kept me on my toes throughout and the ending was just fantastic. Really tense!' Harriet Tyce, author of Blood Orange


It starts with a shocking accusation . . .

Stephanie and Patrick are recently married, with new-born twins. While Stephanie struggles with the disorienting effects of sleep deprivation, there's one thing she knows for certain - she has everything she ever wanted.

Then a woman from his past arrives and makes a…


By William Gay,

Book cover of Twilight

Lee Rozelle Author Of Ballad of Jasmine Wills

From the list on contemporary Southern Gothic.

Who am I?

I was lucky enough to land a job teaching English at the University of Montevallo, a small public liberal arts college where I have had the opportunity to explore my strange academic interests and teach classes with titles like “Am I Human?” and “Southern Neogothic II: Disability, Hicksploitation, Meat.” When I got tenure, I also had the time and freedom to try my hand at writing the kind of Southern Gothic, Bizarro, and Horror tales that I have always adored. From Mad Magazine to MaddAddam, I have always craved dark satire, body horror, and the grotesque. It’s in my blood. 

Lee's book list on contemporary Southern Gothic

Why did Lee love this book?

It’s fitting that the creepiest novel on my list begins with a wagon full of corpses and a rural graveyard pocked with exhumed caskets. William Gay’s Twilight revolves around the dreadful plots of Fenton Breece, a dapper, well-spoken mortician whose ghoulish habits will keep even the heartiest reader up at night. After witnessing the undertaker stealing a family burial vault, young Tyler and his sister Corrie discover that Breece has been mutilating the bodies of the people he buries. A blackmail plot ensues, an assassin hired. Then things get really, really bad. 

By William Gay,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Suspecting that something is amiss with their father's burial, teenager Kenneth Tyler and his sister Corrie venture to his gravesite and make a horrific discovery: their father, a whiskey bootlegger, was not actually buried in the casket they bought for him. Worse, they learn that the undertaker, Fenton Breece, has been grotesquely manipulating the dead. Armed with incriminating photographs, Tyler becomes obsessed with bringing the perverse undertaker to justice. But first he must outrun Granville Sutter, a local strongman and convicted murderer hired by Fenton to destroy the evidence. What follows is an adventure through the Harrikin, an eerie backwoods…

All Fall Down

By Lee Gruenfeld,

Book cover of All Fall Down

James Tarr Author Of Bestiarii

From the list on technically accurate thrillers.

Who am I?

For people who know something about a technical field, there is nothing that can ruin a book or movie faster than inaccuracies about that field. I’ve worked as an armored car driver, police officer, and private investigator in and around Detroit, and have been writing for outdoor magazines for close to twenty years, so not only do I know a lot about the featured subjects/characters of most thrillers, I care about how accurately they’re portrayed, and have brought that passion to my writing. I’ve written five thrillers set in Detroit, many of them featuring a private investigator, and when writing Bestiarii and its sequels did extensive research on dinosaurs.

James' book list on technically accurate thrillers

Why did James love this book?

This novel, released in 1994, was one of The New York Times’ Notable Books of the Year, but these days, unfortunately few people have heard of it. 

A thriller about a terrorist holding the entire American air traffic control system hostage, this novel stood out because of how accurate all the details of the U.S. ATC were—details Gruenfeld had become aware of while pursuing a pilot’s license. 

Rush Limbaugh, an avid fan of aviation, raved about the book on his #1 rated radio show, and that’s where I heard about it.

By Lee Gruenfeld,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked All Fall Down as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

After the near-crash of a passenger plane, the responsible party demands five million in cash to prevent worse accidents, and former NTSB investigator and Naval officer Jack Webster and combat pilot Bo Kincaid are partnered to investigate--if they can trust each other

The Chain

By Adrian McKinty,

Book cover of The Chain

Robert E. Kreig Author Of Pit Guard: The Tanner's Boy

From the list on suspense to lose yourself in.

Who am I?

I love character-driven, roller coaster ride stories. As a young reader, I gravitated to the “choose your own adventure” books which relied on invoking knotted stomachs, and cold sweats in children as they struggled to make the right decision before reading on; turn to page 105 if you want to face the ravenous bear or page 23 if you wish to flee. Thus, the love of reading emerged and, eventually, the joy of writing followed. These books are just some of the stories that bring similar nostalgic tones when I delve into their pages. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

Robert's book list on suspense to lose yourself in

Why did Robert love this book?

The Chain is one of my most recent reads.

I’d categorise it as a dark thriller that created some of the tightest knots in my stomach. The concept alone was enough to generate terror, anxiety, and anger from the first page onward. But anything that involves the endangerment of children does that to me.

A gripping tale that puts the victims, both the kidnapped and the kidnappers, in peril from an unseen syndicate who controls their actions with a phone call.

Very realistic. Very scary.

By Adrian McKinty,

Why should I read it?

4 authors picked The Chain as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When a mother is targeted by a dangerous group of masterminds, she must commit a crime to save her kidnapped daughter—or risk losing her forever—in this "propulsive and original" award-winning thriller (Stephen King).

It's something parents do every morning: Rachel Klein drops her daughter at the bus stop and heads into her day. But a cell phone call from an unknown number changes everything: it's a woman on the line, informing her that she has Kylie bound and gagged in her back seat, and the only way Rachel will see her again is to follow her instructions exactly: pay a…

A Gambling Man

By David Baldacci,

Book cover of A Gambling Man

Delvin Chatterson Author Of No Easy Money

From the list on where the action hero is everyone.

Who am I?

I have always been a storyteller and I’m fascinated by the use of language and how a story can be told well. I’ve used storytelling as an entrepreneur, executive, and management consultant, and my two business books for enlightened entrepreneurship use real-life stories to make the messages and lessons learned more memorable. Fictional versions of those stories were wandering through my imagination to make them more fun to read (and to write) for about fifteen years before they emerged in the Dale Hunter crime thriller series to show that entrepreneurs are not all evil, selfish monsters; sometimes they’re the hero!     

Delvin's book list on where the action hero is everyone

Why did Delvin love this book?

A retro pulp-fiction novel from one of the world’s best-selling authors, David Baldacci.

A Gambling Man is the second intriguing story in Baldacci’s Archer Series about a former WWII veteran working as a private detective. Archer is joined en route to Los Angeles by a beautiful young lady with ambitions in Hollywood who leads them into dangerous territory with murderous gangsters and politicians trying to improve the odds in their favour.

Baldacci’s Archer Series is modeled on the early detective stories of authors like Raymond Chandler and Mickey Spillane. He creates a tough guy detective in the style of the early masters while making Archer more appealing to modern readers – less macho and more respectful of the independent women joining his fight to stop the death and destruction. 

By David Baldacci,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked A Gambling Man as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Aloysius Archer, the straight-talking World War II veteran fresh out of prison, returns in this riveting #1 New York Times bestselling thriller from David Baldacci.

The 1950s are on the horizon, and Archer is in dire need of a fresh start after a nearly fatal detour in Poca City. So Archer hops on a bus and begins the long journey out west to California, where rumor has it there is money to be made if you’re hard-working, lucky, criminal—or all three.
Along the way, Archer stops in Reno, where a stroke of fortune delivers him a wad of cash and…

Book cover of Magic, Lies, and Deadly Pies

Sandra L. Young Author Of Divine Vintage

From the list on featuring “soft” paranormal elements.

Who am I?

Besides a passion for vintage fashion, in writing Divine Vintage I was influenced by mixed-genre books wrapping around “soft” paranormal elements. No vampires, demons, or shifters. Just dashes of ghosts, magic, witches, and special abilities entwined with romance, history, and mystery. These books are meant to charm and enchant with a lyrical touch. I’ve listed a few faves below, ranging from bestsellers I read years ago, to a sister 2022 debut, to an author I just discovered and loved. One of the novels even encompasses my vintage fashion muse. My collection fills a small bedroom, and I always deck out in fun garments for my book presentations and signings. 

Sandra's book list on featuring “soft” paranormal elements

Why did Sandra love this book?

As a recent debut, I wanted to include another wonderful new writer venturing into mixed genres. Misha Popp’s heroine pie-baker even wears flirty vintage dresses as she harnesses her family magic to off abusive men through deadly pies. I rooted for Daisy throughout, partly because she’s an avenger with a conscience, and because she’s always felt she had to maintain distance to hide her secret. How sweet to watch her grudgingly open up to friendship and romance, realizing they add a special spice to life. The well-drawn, diverse, likable characters pursue intriguing plot directions, supported by witty dialogue. And the pie descriptions are downright mouth-watering. No surprise, Popp is a masterful baker in her own right. 

By Misha Popp,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Magic, Lies, and Deadly Pies as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Daisy Ellery’s pies have a secret ingredient: The magical ability to avenge women done wrong by men. But Daisy finds herself on the receiving end in Misha Popp’s cozy series debut, a sweet-as-buttercream treat for fans of Ellery Adams and Mary Maxwell.

The first time Daisy Ellery killed a man with a pie, it was an accident. Now, it’s her calling. Daisy bakes sweet vengeance into her pastries, which she and her dog Zoe deliver to the men who’ve done dirty deeds to the town’s women. But if she can’t solve the one crime that’s not of her own baking,…

Y Is For Yesterday

By Sue Grafton,

Book cover of Y Is For Yesterday

M. Lee Prescott Author Of Prepped to Kill

From the list on humor, pathos, and a loveable woman sleuth.

Who am I?

I’m the author of over thirty novels, including two mystery series. One is a cozy, small-town series, the Roger and Bess mysteries, the other a series that features a smart, resilient, courageous, sometimes bumbling women sleuth, Ricky Steele. I hope that she is loveable to readers. They often write to tell me she feels like their best friend. I tend to read the kinds of books I’ve recommended. Devour them actually. I also write in the genre. Sue Grafton, Sara Paretsky, Janet Evanovich, and Marcia Mueller have inspired and entertained me throughout both my reading and writing life. 

M. Lee's book list on humor, pathos, and a loveable woman sleuth

Why did M. Lee love this book?

Number twenty-five in Grafton’s alphabet series, and sadly her last, was published shortly before her death, Y Is For Yesterday explores dark deeds from the past that haunt characters in present day. I personally recommend the entire series, but this title bookends A Is For Alibi as it illustrates the author’s and Kinsey’s growth over 25 titles. I was blown away, as I always am, by Kinsey’s self-deprecating humor, warmth, and intelligence as she fends off a vicious sociopath from her past while investigating a ten-year-old murder.   

By Sue Grafton,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Y Is For Yesterday as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Y is for Yesterday is the twenty-fifth in the Kinsey Millhone mystery series by Sue Grafton.

The darkest and most disturbing case report from the files of Kinsey Millhone, Y begins in 1979, when four teenage boys from an elite private school sexually assault a fourteen-year-old classmate - and film the attack. Not long after, the tape goes missing and the suspected thief, a fellow classmate, is murdered. In the investigation that follows, one boy turns in evidence for the state and two of his peers are convicted. But the ringleader escapes without a trace.

Now, it's 1989 and one…

Blue Heaven

By Joe Keenan,

Book cover of Blue Heaven

Kevin Klehr Author Of Winter Masquerade

From the list on gay themed not about romance.

Who am I?

I usually write queer fiction with an urban fantasy or magic realism bent, although I’ve dabbled in dystopian novels and a couple of romance novellas. I have an interest in bringing to light modern queer works that aren’t rooted in erotica or romance because I know firsthand the misconceptions that are placed on writers of gay fiction. And too often I’ve had to find tactful ways to explain what I write when people assume I’m limited by genre.

Kevin's book list on gay themed not about romance

Why did Kevin love this book?

This is the first of a trilogy of which any book in the series is worth reading. In this farce written long before marriage equality, a gay man hatches an outlandish scheme to throw a wedding, just for the expensive gifts. What follows is a comedy that incorporates blackmail and the mafia. You read this novel for pure pleasure, enjoying the clever one-liners while the plot spirals out of control. Flamboyant, camp, and ridiculously funny.

By Joe Keenan,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Blue Heaven as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Set in contemporary New York, this book revolves around four characters, all either unemployed or barely employed. The calamities begin when Gilbert, who is gay, and Moira, an arch bitch, devise a seemingly brilliant plan to swindle their respective monied families - by getting married.