Okay, so the real reason why I haven’t been sleeping recently isn’t because I’ve been staying up late reading… it’s because I’ve been addicted to watching thrillers. I KNOW. NETFLIX IS RUINING MY LIFE. First it takes my money, then it takes my productivity, then it takes my precious beauty sleep?! (I’m kidding, Netflix and I are in a loving relationship. We’re all good.)
OH BOY. 2019 is already blessing us (cursing us? depends how much you enjoy being scared) with some amazing thriller TV shows, and I’m loving them — in a Will-I-Sleep-Tonight? kind of way. I mean, it’s a valid question. Will I be too addicted to the show to sleep? Or will the show be so creepy I’ll think every sound inside my home is a serial killer coming to finish me off? Flip a coin and kiss goodbye to those midnight snacks. I’m too scared to walk around my house alone now.
So today I’m going to share some YA thrillers you should check out, based on your current Netflix thriller obsession! Please tell me I’m not the only one who’s obsessed with all of these shows at the moment. AND THEN WE CAN GUSH ABOUT THEM TOO. Or, you know, start a support group filled with gifs of coffee on those early mornings after we’ve had two hours sleep and reassuring there-there’s when run out of tea and are too scared to go into the kitchen when it’s dark.
Dirty John | Here Lies Daniel Tate
Don’t we all love our lying characters? Well, John is definitely not someone you should love, but Daniel is our adorable, vaguely manipulative son who’s just trying his best to find a family he can feel safe with. WE FORGIVE HIM. I read Here Lies Daniel Tate when it was released about two years ago, and I’m honestly still thinking about it. That’s how good it was. THERE ARE MORE *GASP* MOMENTS IN THIS BOOK THAN WHEN WE ALL WATCHED PRETTY LITTLE LIARS FOR THE FIRST TIME. Don’t pretend you weren’t trash for that show too. I see through your lies.
So basically, Here Lies Daniel Tate is about a boy who’s lied that he’s a family’s missing boy so that he gets off the streets and gets to live a luxurious life, and Dirty John is about a man who seems really kind to his girlfriend in the beginning but turns out to be actually really creepy? There’s two types of liars in this world: the ones we forgive because they’re most likely YA characters and just want a family, even if they’re not actually his family, and the ones we just back away slowly from… BOTH THIS BOOK AND THIS SHOW ARE SUPER ADDICTIVE. You have been warned.
You | Risk
BRB, JUST DELETING ALL MY SOCIAL MEDIA ACCOUNTS. If Risk didn’t make you swear off ever putting anything about yourself online, then You will definitely make you think again. I mean, I was like hmm, maybe I should stop sharing every aspect of my life online but then five minutes later I was like just sipping on coffee at my favourite cafe near my house! come stalk me! WHOOPS. If you’re a fan of You on Netflix and haven’t read Risk, add it to your TBR!
Both these are similar in the fear that they instil in you. While You is far creepier and Risk is more of an alarming, heart-wrenching read, they’re both SCARY. THINGS LIKE THIS HAPPEN ALL THE TIME. People get stalked online and people go on online dates and never come home. I think we’re all just safer staying the little reading hermits that we are. The world can be a scary place, and You and Risk reaffirm that notion.
Elite | Truly Devious
NEW FAVOURITE BOOK ALERT. Like Elite, Truly Devious is set at a prestigious school and there’s been a kidnapping and presumed MURDER (this is an interactive blog post: please read “murder” in your spookiest voice. bonus points if it’s in a Scottish accent too). Truly Devious is told in alternating time-streams, told from the past, where a girl went missing at the school, and present day, where one of the students is investigating the crime. IT’S CREEPY. IT HAS ALL THE SHERLOCK VIBES. AND MY CHARACTERS ARE ALL ADORABLE MUNCHKINS.
So there’s Stevie, our true-crime obsessed, aspiring detective girl who’d much rather read about murder than go to parties, Janelle, who’s a confident, badass STEM student, and Nate, who’s socially awkward and is trying (read: failing) to write the followup to the bestselling fantasy novel he wrote when he was 14. I LOVE THEM ALL SO MUCH, but especially Nate. WRITING BOOKS IS HARD, Y’ALL. So if you loved the prestigious school vibes of Elite and are looking for a murder mystery to curl up with and devour in one sitting, you’ll have to put Truly Devious on your TBR.
Broadchurch | Stalking Jack the Ripper
I love a good murder mystery, if you couldn’t already tell that. If you’re a fan of them too, both Broadchurch and Stalking Jack the Ripper WILL NOT DISAPPOINT. Broadchurch is set in a small coastal town in England and investigates a series of crimes (one major crime for each season) and Stalking Jack the Ripper does the same by focussing around one particular illusive historical figure and a crime (like Jack the Ripper in the first book, as the title suggests). BRITISH MYSTERIES ARE THE BEST. But holy crap, Stalking Jack the Ripper is a book that you’ll just want to keep reading until you’ve devoured it. It’s fast-paced, it’s bloody, it’s got strong feminist themes, and there’s even a swoony romance in there if that’s your jam.
And as I mentioned, if you’re someone who can’t get enough of these series, FEAR NOT. There are three delicious books in this series that you can sink your teeth into! If you’re anything like me and refuse to leave the house (or your bed) until you’ve finished the whole novel, then that should take you no longer than a day. Give or take. GO LIVE YOUR BEST HERMIT LIFE. I SUPPORT YOUR LIFE DECISIONS.
The Ted Bundy Tapes| Sadie
I’m pretty proud of my pairing for this one, I’ve got to admit. While Ted Bundy is about a serial killer and Sadie is about the investigation of a murdered girl, they’re similar in the way the stories are told. Ted Bundy is told through a series of interviews and tapes with the killer himself, and Sadie is told through a podcast format—so I definitely recommend listening to the audio for this one! It’s narrated by a full cast and there’s a jingle and wow, the production value on that creation is just INCREDIBLE.
But as well as being creepy, this novel is also incredibly SAD in parts. It’s confronting to hear about what happened to Sadie and go on this close journey that felt so personal. I just can’t express how beautifully-written this novel was, and I know I’ll be reading everything that the author produces next. If you’re a fan of mysteries and crime novels, Sadie has got to be on your radar.
How to Get Away with Murder | Undead Girl Gang
College students trying not to be charged with murder? A teen girl raising her friend from the dead to try and hunt down her killer? THERE’S SOME CORRELATION THERE, TRUST ME. I’m sure you all know what How to Get Away with Murder is about (and if you don’t, the hint is in the title), but I literally watched that show to revise for legal tests in high school. I’m not going to say I did brilliantly, but I didn’t fail either. Moral of the story: always watch Netflix shows that vaguely relate to your subject if you need to revise for a test. (Just kidding. Stay in school and try you best not to fail, kids.) But on the flip side Undead Girl Gang is kind of an introductory text to how to be a really bad amateur witch? SOMEONE COME PRACTICE WITCHCRAFT WITH ME. I want to be the Willow of our generation. My hair’s kind of the same colour? Right?
Undead Girl Gang is just such a FUN book. Sure, there are zombie-like people, and people who turn out to be evil mushroom men, and bitchy high school kids you wish you could slap sometimes, but in a fun way. This book is jam-packed with dry humour and strong female friendships and a diverse cast of characters. IT WAS EXCELLENT. And it was also a murder mystery? With those creepy, fantastical elements? I APPROVE. Seriously, if watching Buffy didn’t already make me watch to become a witch, this novel sure did. I’ll probably raise an army of the undead, but I’ll be trying. That’s the main thing, right?
Have you read any of the books or seen any of the shows I’ve mentioned? What are some of your favourite YA thrillers / mysteries? What about TV shows? I’d love to know!