Dark thrillers for a not-so-typical summer

By Collection Management Librarian Dontaná McPherson-Joseph

Summer is here, but it looks nothing like how we imagined it. In a pre-pandemic world, this would be a list of fun and breezy reads to take with you to the beach. For now, though, enjoy these dark thrillers from the comfort of your backyard, deck chair, or favorite park bench.

You can find all of the title suggestions below available in your digital library through Media on Demand and Libby and/or Hoopla.

Backyard thrillers


Clean Hands by Patrick Hoffman

Why you should try it: This legal thriller features strong women as the lead characters and deep dives into dark political underbellies.

Description: The award-winning author of The White Van presents the story of a corporate lawyer and high-priced fixer who must retrieve a lost cell phone containing vital secret documents, before uncovering the work of an unknown murderer.

Stream & download with: Hoopla (ebook)

Find all available formats in the catalog »

These Women by Ivy Pochoda

Why you should try it: This literary thriller dives into the lives of five “ladies of the evening.”

Description: Connected by the deadly obsessions of a single man, five very different women endure lives of danger and anguish, including a mother whose daughter’s murder remains unsolved. By the award-winning author of Wonder Valley.

Stream & download with: Hoopla (ebook and digital audiobook); Media on Demand & Libby (ebook)

Find all available formats in the catalog »

The Coyotes of Carthage by Steven Wright

Why you should try it: A cinematic political thriller where a lone Black man finds himself deep in the South Carolina woods.

Description: In a small South Carolina town, a political operative runs a dark-money campaign for his corporate clients.

Stream & download with: Hoopla (ebook and digital audiobook); Media on Demand & Libby (ebook)

Find all available formats in the catalog »

The Eighth Girl by Maxine Mei-Fung Chung

Why you should try it: This psychological thriller set in the London underground scene is perfect if you like Caroline Kepnes books.

Description: A woman with multiple personality disorder finds her other selves becoming assets and vulnerabilities in her effort to rescue her friend, a worker at a London gentlemen’s club who has uncovered a dangerous secret.

Stream & download with: Hoopla (ebook and digital audiobook)

Find all available formats in the catalog »

Speaking of Summer by Kalisha Buckhanon

Why you should try it: This literary thriller is a slow descent into madness for one woman in Harlem.

Description: A woman’s desperate search for her missing twin is complicated by their mother’s recent death, police indifference, her relationship with her twin’s boyfriend, and a growing obsession that tests the limits of her sanity.

Stream & download with: Hoopla (ebook), Media on Demand & Libby (ebook)

Find all available formats in the catalog »

Lady Killers: Deadly Women Throughout History by Tori Telfer

Why you should try it: The lone nonfiction book on this list is all about women who kill and why.

Description: Based on her popular online series that appeared on Jezebel and The Hairpin, the author, in this first book to examine female serial killers through a feminist lens, delves into the cruel and cunning minds of 14 women who, largely forgotten by history, had a penchant for murder and mayhem.

Stream & download with: Hoopla (ebook and digital audiobook), Media on Demand & Libby (ebook)

Find all available formats in the catalog »

Librarian Dontaná McPherson-Joseph

About Dontaná

Dontaná is a Collection Management Librarian who was born with an unending reading list. She is almost always reading two books simultaneously and is easily distracted by cool covers.

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