I spent the last few weeks with my nose stuck in a book. Quite literally. It warmed up so much outside, and the hammock has been calling my name! I powered through more books the last weeks than I did all of 2021! My last few book review posts were pretty critical, with a few “maybe don’t read this one” recommendations. Well, buckle up, buttercup! The last few thrillers I read were SO juicy and impossible to put down. Keep reading to see what ones you need to add to your summer reading list now!
5 Thrillers to Read This Summer
1. The Last Mrs Parrish
I loved this one! I read it super fast while on Spring Break. I actually had a hard time putting it down. It’s one of those stories where you’re dying to find out what happens, and then you finish it, and sit and wonder how you’re just supposed to move on with life. Which, in my opinion, means The Last Mrs Parrish was A GREAT read!
The Last Mrs Parrish took me for a damn ride, and it’s Liv Constantine’s debut thriller! WOW.
Here’s the gist, without any spoilers: A con-woman named Amber befriends a Daphne Parrish. At the beginning of the book, Amber is narrating, and doesn’t give much away, but their “chance meeting” was a set-up. Throughout the book, her plan is revealed: she is going to steal Daphne’s mega-rich, mega-hot husband. The two quickly become best friends, and soon, Amber’s plan seems to be working… maybe too well 😬😬😬
Then, halfway through, Daphne takes over as the narrator and everything I thought I knew changed. The twists and turns on this one required a seatbelt. I will also mention that there may be some “triggering” scenes (sexual and physical abuse), but I felt it was “tastefully” done, and really added impact to the book.
I found the ending of this book to be EXTREMELY satisfying. I usually fall in love with a book, only to be annoyed at the happy ending, or too much happens in the last 3 pages and my brain can’t process it. The Last Mrs Parrish was wrapped up perfectly, in my opinion!! Put this one at the top of your Thrillers To Read This Summer list!!
2. Pretty Things
Pretty Things was hard to put down! I found this story to be fascinating – it kind of reminded me of the movie The Bling Ring (which I love!)
Pretty Things starts with a tragic backstory, and you can’t help but feel badly for Nina, who is truly a product if her environment. She gets mixed up with a well-to-do family and it doesn’t end well. For anyone. Then we jump forward several years. Nina is older and needs to pull one last con job to pay for her terminally ill mother’s treatment. Her target? Vanessa, the daughter of the well-to-do family, who happens to be an Influencer.
I actually thought this book did a great job portraying the lifestyle of an influencer, albeit with a very cynical view. Other stories have tried, but fallen short, and focus only on the greedy, vapid girl-who-has-it-all type. Vanessa is not in a good place mentally, and that makes her a solid target. Without giving away too much more, this one will take you for a ride!
Janelle Brown would tell one portion of the story from Nina’s perspective, and then jump to Vanessa, but she went back and retold the same part of the story. I thought it was so interesting seeing the same scenes play out from each of their perspectives.
Throw in some love, lies, betrayals, a few family secrets, and a safe filled with a million dollars, and you’ve got yourself a winning title! I highly recommend you add Pretty Things to your list of thrillers to read this summer!
3. The Making of Us
Because I don’t think I can get through a book review blog post without a Lisa Jewell novel popping up! In The Making of Us, a man is dying and telling his hospice nurse about his three children: “his legacy”. But the three children are strangers who have never met and are living entirely different lives. That’s about it for excitement for the rest of the book, to be honest. I hate to be harsh, because I really do love Jewell’s more recent novels!
While this isn’t Lisa Jewell’s best book (or even a top 4), I would say it’s still worth a read! This is an older book, and I guess I was expecting more of a “I kidnapped this girl and locked her in my basement to birth my child and leave her for dead” plotline, but this was not that kind of book – it was a bit more complex.
I feel like there was SO MUCH MORE to each character, but it never got deep enough for me to really relate or “click” with one of the main characters, which always makes it a little harder to get into the story. This was a more “touching” or “heartfelt” story, but the emotion didn’t really hit me, as I found the characters a but shallow.
f all 5 books I am reviewing today, I liked The Making of Us the least — but that said, I did finish it. I found myself wanting to know how it ended (which was fairly predictable).
4. The Girl’s Weekend
This was such a good one!!! I read it in 2 sittings. A fun college reunion turns into a crime scene in The Girl’s Weekend. This is a classic tale of frenemies, and every single person had a motive – which made it SO juicy. It was one of those who-done-it mysteries that had me trying to solve the case before June Moody, the narrator, and also the number 1 suspect. Throw in an unexplainable lapse in memory for everyone involved, where no one is sure what they even did last night?! WOW. A page-turner.
I have to admit, I was totally wrong on who I thought did it… but I think that made me like this one even more.
The ending was a little cheesy, maybe a little too happy, but it did end with someone getting shot in the head which is always solid 😉
The Girl’s Weekend almost reminded me of One by One by Ruth Ware, which I reviewed in this post, but I think I liked the characters more in this one. You just loved to hate Sadie, which really kept me turning the pages!!
5. The Good Sister
I read The Good Sister in just a few days, this one was hard to put down!
Fern and Rose are twin sisters, but are anything but identical. On the surface, these sisters are as close as can be. Rose is proper and put together, while Fern is quirky, and loves rocking rainbows and unicorns. She is also on the spectrum of Asperger’s syndrome – she is sensitive to light, voices, and touch, which make her very dependent on Rose. The book switches back-and-forth between Fern’s current life and Rose’s journal (which a therapist suggested she keep; it is a mix of memories and current events).
However, the sisters are hiding a very dark secret. One that they agreed not to speak about. In Rose’s journal, she documents awful childhood memories, and an abusive, mentally unstable mother. Rose has stepped into a role of protector of Fern. Fern is instantly lovable. She’s not without her quirks, but you just want to root for her from the beginning.
Soon, though, as Fern starts a romantic relationship, her eyes are opened to how much her sister actually controls her life. Maybe Rose isn’t exactly who she is portraying herself as in her journal. Or maybe Fern is more unbalanced that we thought? I found there was SO much depth to the characters, that it was impossible not to be completely sucked into this thriller.
I can’t say too much more without spoilers, so just trust me when I say you need to read The Good Sister!
So tell me, what books are you going to read this summer?