Deadly blizzards, secluded locations, looming danger — snowbound settings and thrillers are just made for each other. And what’s better than getting cozy with a spine-tingling mystery when there’s a crisp chill in the air? Not much. Grab a steamy beverage and settle in with these 10 heart-racing snowbound thrillers, the perfect retreat for all those long winter nights.
Eight Perfect Murders
Eight Perfect Murders is a thrilling journey. On the way, be prepared to investigate the blurry lines between truth and fiction. The novel opens on a snowy day in February and Swanson pulls us along into a phycological novel of suspense that pays homage to the thriller genre. In discussing ANY mystery novel, it’s tempting to want to disclose information on the whole plot. From the opening lines to the premise, this novel keeps us on our toes and guessing.
The Chill: A Novel
Memory and disaster (both natural and man-made) haunt this story of ghosts creeping their way into each of the characters’ lives. We often think of ghosts haunting a home. The Chill reminds us that nature is our original home; and that, too, is not off-limits to the other world. It is an eeriness that seeps into the novel; the way water drips until you don’t notice the flood.
The Witch Hunter
In true horror tradition, that which is scary isn’t the monster itself. In detective fiction, we must go through the darkness with the main character. Seeck paces out investigator Jessica Niemi’s pursuit of a serial killer at a breakneck speed, all balanced by Niemi’s own backstory. Her origins, the things that motivate her, and her secrets are all carefully meted out in such a way that we become even more tangled in the story — and It’s an exhilarating journey!
One by One
A suspenseful thriller set on a snow-covered mountain — yes, please! David Baldacci has called Ruth Ware “the Agatha Christie of our generation.” And this one is definitely giving us flashbacks to Christie’s And Then There Were None. So, get cozy, pull yourself up to the fire and get ready for an adrenaline-fueled cat-and-mouse game you will not be able to put down.
What is it about getting a mysterious invitation to a ski weekend in the French Alps that is both intriguing AND terrifying? Allie Reynolds helps us explore both feelings throughout this novel. Here is the “cold-weather beach read” you didn’t realize you needed. You’re welcome! And you’ve been warned — this ski trip is no slow go down the bunny slope. It’s far more exhilarating. Winter Olympics exhilarating, to be exact.
The Hunting Party
A cold weather mystery doesn’t get anymore, well, cold than this. There’s the Scottish Highlands and then a blizzard that seals a lodge and its guests off from the outside world. We can expect what comes next: murder! The well-paced fun, of course, is trying to figure out the culprit. Just when you think you have it all figured out, Foley delivers a perfectly timed twist. We imagine Agatha Christie is cheering on the sidelines.
The Sanatorium: A Novel
What could possibly go wrong at an abandoned sanatorium turned hotel? Throw in the Swiss Alps setting AND an off-duty detective and you know you are going to be in for some winter weather chills. And, NOT from the low temperatures. This atmospheric gothic thriller stopped us in our tracks. Well, at least we THINK they are our tracks…
Dark Currents reminds us that our parents and grandparents had lives before we arrived on the scene. The book’s mystery is not only that of a dead body — but of all the lives that surrounded the body. What do we remember? How do we see ourselves? How do others see us? It’s these mysteries of life that make this novel an engaging read.
Midwinter Murder: Fireside Tales from the Queen of Mystery
And we have to close out with the “Mistress of Mystery”! Beware of deadly snowdrifts, poisoned meals and mysterious guests — ’tis the season after all! For those wondering what Agatha Christie thought about the holidays and winter, in general, tuck into a hot beverage and this collection of stories — and leave the front porch light on. This chilling compendium of short stories also includes the original version of Christmas Adventure, which had previously not been released in the United States.
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Murder on the Orient Express
OK — one more Agatha Christie (she is the queen after all). Ahh! The allure of travel. More specifically the novel and almost exotic appeal of travel by train. There’s something to be said for those posh cabins and cozy spaces. What could go wrong, right? Thankfully, Agatha Christie put her famous detective Hercule Poirot on the trip. Can you hear the train’s whistle? Climb aboard for one of the greatest twists ever written in the history of mystery stories.