"Grip-Lit" is certainly the fiction of choice for 2016 (as if this year wasn't tense enough). Psychological thrillers aren't new. However, these popular women-in-peril novels focus on domestic horrors: abuse, accidents, memory loss, missing children and (really) bad romance. Mix in unreliable narrators and huuge surprises -- and you have a gripping read. And isn't that appropriate for a year of post-truthiness and scary plot twists?
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
After Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl, this book has been a flagship title for this sub-genre. The film was released in October starring Emily Blunt.
Behind Closed Doors by B. A. Paris
A British woman is living a storybook life with her charming husband. Except for what's in the basement.
The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapeña
A young couple's baby goes missing during a dinner party. You will endure the leaden prose just to find out what happened to the baby.
The Girls in the Garden by Lisa Jewell
After a tragic family incident, a woman moves into a new neighbourhood with a beautiful communal garden. A brutal attack on her 13-year-old daughter unearths terrible secrets at the heart of the community. Hint: it's not organically-grown kale.
I See You by Clare Mackintosh
Zoe's reading the newspaper on the train and spots an ad for "Find The One". And it's got her picture underneath. To her horror, other women whose photos appear in these ads turn up dead.
Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough
That awkward moment when the guy you smootched with in the bar last night turns out to be your new (married) boss. And his wife seems scared of him.
Find Me by J. S. Monroe
Jarlath's girlfriend killed herself when they were students. Now he thinks he's seen her. Is Rosa alive?
I Found You by Lisa Jewell
In a British seaside town, single-mother Alice finds a man without a coat and his memory gone. Naturally, she invites him in.
I Let You Go by Clare Mackintosh
Lives are shattered when a five-year-old boy slips from his mother's grasp and is killed by a hit-and-run driver. It's clear who's to blame -- or is it?
The Passenger by Lisa Lutz
Tanya's husband lies dead at the bottom of her staircase. Looks bad. She bolts and changes her identity, which works -- until she's recognized.
The Widow by Fiona Barton
A recent widow creepily contemplates telling the truth about the horrific crime her creepy husband was accused of committing.
In a Dark Dark Wood by Ruth Ware
Nora is invited to a bachelorette party for a friend she hasn't seen since "the accident" ten years earlier. Wait...what exactly did happen that night?
Related links: If You Liked the Girl on the Train