Top 10 Thriller Books – Books That Enthrall

This is our selection of the top 10 suspense and thriller books that have ever been written. This is according to the many members of our book club who we asked and we then compiled this list based on the overall majority of their opinions.

Top 10 Thriller Books

Book Title
Author Name
The Silence of the LambsThomas Harris1988
The LikenessTana French2008
Presumed Innocent Scott Turow1987
The Andromeda StrainMichael Crichton1969
Alive:The Story of The Andes SurvivorsPiers Paul Read1974
The Lost SymbolDan Brown2009
Kill Alex CrossJames Patterson2012
BacklashLynda La Plante2012
The ChamberJohn Grisham2005
Jack of HeartsKen Scott2006


Like any list I am sure you think some great books are missing and others should not be there at all. That is always the problem with lists as they are just opinions. I would not have The Lost Symbol on my list personally as I didn’t think it was a great read. Again that is just my opinion.

Below I have done more detailed reviews of the top 5 in this list.

Silence of The Lambs

silence of the lambsThis is one of my favourite reads of all time. I loved the film but I always prefer the book and this is certainly the case with this one. If you have not read this one then get it on to your list even if you have seen the movie.


The plot is an intriguing one. Clarice Starling is an FBI trainee who is asked to pull together various psychological profiles of serial killers. As part of that she encounters Hannibal Lecter who is in jail and serving nine consecutive life sentences in a mental institution.

However the Head of the FBI actually wants to use Lecter to track down another serial killer known as “Buffalo Bill.

Now I don’t want to say much more than that to be honest. All I can tell you is that it is a fantastic read. Below is a short clip of the movie where Clarice meets Hannibal Lecter. The book is of course much better in my opinion.


The Likeness

The LikenessTana French is in my opinion a great author and also an under rated writer. Her debut book was called “In The Woods” and won the Edgar award. I prefer “The Likeness” as did the other members of my book club, which is why it is here.


Cassie Maddox and Sam O’Neill are both detectives in Dublin, Ireland.

Cassie is the star of this story and she goes undercover to live with four liberal arts candidates whose house mate, Lexie Madison, is found dead from a stabbing in an abandoned cottage. Lexie Madison looks exactly like Cassie, and the name is her last undercover alias, which adds to the mystery. The house mates will be told that she survived the stabbing.

Presumed Innocent

presumed innocentIf you like court based dramas then you will really enjoy this one. This is one of the few books that I could not put down. It keeps you gripped and has a strong story line the whole way through.


Set in 2007 Rusty Sabich, who has risen to become Chief Judge of the Third District Court in Kindle County. He wants to run for the State Supreme Court in the near future.

It is an intense story of how people nurse deep-seated resentments that fester for years and do great damage. The courtroom scenes are fascinating and he makes the complex proceedings understandable and fascinating

The Andromeda Strain

The Andromeda StrainI am a Crichton fan and this book explains why. Jurassic Park was another and I think he makes a really great thriller writer. If this is one you have missed then treat yourself.


Men are sent to recover a satellite that has crashed. It has landed in a small town. On arrival they wonder why there are no lights at all in a town at night time. They enter the town and within five minutes are dead.

Enter a number of scientists in different locations who have been alerted to the situation. They are sent to the government laboratory that has been prepared for this situation, and the steps that they take to analyse and isolate the organism. The lab is the perfect place to study such an organism: it is even equipped with a nuclear self-destruct in case things go wrong.

Alive: The Story of The Andes Survivors

aliveThis story was captivating for me. The battle against nature and man’s will to survive combine to make a truly fascinating read. Don’t miss out on this one. It is an amazing book.


It is the true story of a rugby team from Uruguay, along with a few relatives and close friends, whose plane crashed in the Andes Mountains. The people who survived the initial plane crash are forced to take immediate action in order to preserve their lives.

They eventually realize that a rescue has been called off. Stranded in the freezing Andes, cold, hungry, and weak the survivors struggle against all odds to remain alive.

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