Ditch the Haunted House: 15 Heart-Stopping Thrillers to Read This Fall

Photo by Andrea Boldizsar on Unsplash

Fall is a beautiful season, without a doubt. The colors of the leaves make everyday more magical, the cool breezes are to die for, and there’s pumpkin spice in everything for a few months, which only makes the world a better place.

But there’s also a mysterious side to Fall – a spooky, thrilling side. Ever take a stroll at night, hear the leaves rustle behind you, and find yourself walking much faster than you were before? Have you looked up at the full moon, glowing in the dark of night, and felt a chill travel up your spine? Or maybe you’ve been driving alone, and in the glare of the headlights, you swear that you see something move in the bushes on the side of the road?

If what I’m saying is relatable or piquing your interest, then you, my friend, may secretly be a thrill-seeker. Ditch the haunted house this year and indulge your desire for suspense and mystery by picking up one (or many) of the books below. They’ll be sure to get your blood racing, and your heart pumping – an adrenaline high waiting just for you, packed within the pages.

  • The cover of the book Origin


    A Novel

    A #1 New York Times bestseller from the author of The Da Vinci Code, this inventive thriller navigates the unveiling of a controversial discovery that changes what we know about our existence. Robert Langdon – a Harvard professor of symbology and expert on religious icons – attends an event at the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain, that erupts in total chaos after a shocking presentation. He finds himself on the run, and on a quest to find unveil the truth about where we come from, and why we’re really here.

  • The cover of the book Deep Freeze

    Deep Freeze

    A woman has been found dead, frozen in a block of ice. Virgil Flowers is on the case, working to uncover the details of her murder. Virgil connects her demise to a high school conflict that happened twenty years ago. Luckily for him, a class reunion is taking place soon – the perfect time to piece together the puzzle. But things are never that easy, and Virgil quickly realizes that high school truly is murder.
  • The cover of the book Pulse


    When a man is found unconscious at a local racecourse, he is rushed to the hospital, where he eventually dies. He has no ID, no one at the race knew him, and no one has come to claim his body. He is “no one.” Doctor Chris Rankin becomes obsessed with this nameless man, and begins to investigate his identity, which leads him down a dark and dangerous path.

  • The cover of the book Smile


    A Novel

    From the author of the Booker Prize winning Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha, this haunting novel centers on Victor Forde, who lives alone, and goes to the same bar every night for the same drink. One night, Victor’s usual evening drink is interrupted by Fitzpatrick – a man that went to school with him many years ago. Shortly after their meeting, suppressed memories emerge from Victor’s past, and threaten to destroy what’s left of his sanity. Smile reminds us that our memory isn’t always trustworthy because sometimes, when it’s bad enough, we choose to reinvent our past.

  • The cover of the book Quick & Dirty

    Quick & Dirty

    From New York Times bestselling author Stuart Woods comes another heart-stopping Stone Barrington novel. This time around, Stone deals with a beautiful new client who drags him into the exclusive world of high-scale art. Taking place in New York City and the Hamptons, this action-packed thriller demonstrates that big money is serious business, and when something gets in the way of profit, that’s worth killing for.

  • The cover of the book The Rooster Bar

    The Rooster Bar

    #1 New York Times bestselling author John Grisham newest thriller follows a shady law firm that’s on the verge of losing it all. Mark, Todd, and Zola, third-year law students and close friends, are wary of their future – they’ve paid a lot of money for a mediocre school. And when they learn that their school is owned by a devious New York hedge-fund operator who also owns a bank specializing in student loans, the three know that they’ve been scammed, big time. They decide to leave school right before graduation, and start down a dangerous path, eager to expose the scandal they’ve endured.

  • The cover of the book Crazy Like a Fox

    Crazy Like a Fox

    A Novel

    In this thrilling new mystery from New York Times bestselling author Rita Mae Brown, an investigation goes haywire when a valuable treasure leads to murder, visits from ghosts, and revives old family rivalries. Now “Sister” Jane Arnold and a pack of four-legged friends must catch the scent of a killer and shed light on a long-hidden truth.

  • The cover of the book My Husband's Wife

    My Husband's Wife

    A Novel

    A national bestseller with a gripping title (and plot), Jane Corry’s psychological thriller is bound to captivate any reader. When young lawyer Lily marries Ed, she’s excited to escape from her haunting past, and have a fresh start. But as soon as she starts to settle down, she takes on her first murder case, and everything changes. Joe, the convicted murderer, is very appealing to Lily – she soon becomes obsessed with him, and is willing to risk anything to get him out of harm’s way. Lily begins to hoard many secrets, to protect herself and Joe. She thinks her secrets are safe – until her observant next-door neighbor Carla realizes that secrets harness power, and she happens to know them all.

  • The cover of the book Bonfire


    A Novel

    From actress, producer, and writer Krysten Ritter, Bonfire seeks to answer the age-old question: Can you ever really forget your past? Abby Williams left her small hometown of Barrens, Indiana years ago, desperate to shed painful memories she made there. Now she’s an environmental lawyer in Chicago, with a thriving career and a promising future. But a new case takes her back home to investigate one of the biggest scandals the town has ever seen, and Abby’s burned-away past ignites once again. Bonfire is a dark exploration of what can happen when your past and present collide.

  • The cover of the book City of Lies

    City of Lies

    This thrilling new series features Elizabeth Miles – a woman on the run. Elizabeth lives on the edge, assuming many roles to take from the wealthy what they don’t rightfully deserve. But this time around, she doesn’t get away with her deception unscathed. Greedy entrepreneur Oscar Thornton doesn’t like that a woman outwitted him, and he’s out for blood. Elizabeth must remember who she is, underneath all of her disguises, and be wary of her surroundings if she’s to make it out alive. This book is more historical fiction than it is thriller, but we thought it warranted a spot on this list because it is such a fast-paced, exciting read. It’s also the perfect gateway into historical fiction for thriller lovers!

  • The cover of the book The Midnight Line

    The Midnight Line

    A Jack Reacher Novel

    Jack Reacher is back in Lee Child’s latest thriller, The Midnight Line. When Jack Reacher sees a woman’s West Point 2005 class ring on display in a pawn shop window, he decides to track down the owner of the ring, to find out why she’d give up something so hard-earned. He thinks it’ll be simple work: Find the woman, return the ring. But of course it won’t be that simple.

  • The cover of the book Typhoon Fury

    Typhoon Fury

    In the latest installment to his Oregon Files series, Clive Cussler follows Juan Cabrillo and the crew of the Oregon in their search for a painting collection valued at half a billion dollars. Things spin out of control (as they are want to do when you work aboard the Oregon), and the crew soon finds themselves fighting to prevent a third world war.

  • The cover of the book Tipping the Velvet

    Tipping the Velvet

    A Novel

    Stephanie Plum is back in her twenty-fourth novel, and her life in New Jersey is just as chaotic as ever. Headless corpses are appearing throughout Jersey, and at first it’s the just heads of the already-dead that are being cut off. That’s disturbing, but it isn’t murder. When a homeless man is found dead and headless behind a church, however, Stephanie knows it’ll be up to her to find the neck-chopping killer.

  • The cover of the book The Whispering Room

    The Whispering Room

    A Jane Hawk Novel

    When beloved schoolteacher Cora Gundersun commits suicide, everyone believes she must have been insane. Everyone but Jane Hawk, that is. Her husband has also recently and inexplicably committed suicide, as have a variety of other seemingly stable, somewhat exceptional individuals. She sets off on the trail of a group of powerful crooks determined to take over America’s future, fueled by grief over the loss of her husband, and worry for her five-year-old son’s life.

  • The cover of the book The Romanov Ransom

    The Romanov Ransom

    That’s right; we’ve got two Cussler titles on this list, because he’s just that prolific. The Romanov Ransom is the latest addition to his Sam and Remi Fargo series, and it follows the two treasure hunters in their search across the globe for a Romanov fortune—a ransom paid in 1918 to free the Romanovs from the Bolsheviks. Sam and Remi suspect that the fortune has fallen into the hands of a Nazi guerrilla faction called the Werewolves, and they’re determined to make their mark on history by taking it from them.