Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

Here we present 25 thrillers and thrillers. It's best to read them wrapped up well on the sofa.

1. Nele Neuhaus: In the forest

In her eighth Taunus thriller, Nele Neuhaus proves that even an investigator who you think you know inside out can be a surprise package. "In the forest", who reads just as fluently as his predecessors, is Bodenstein's most personal case. Over 560 pages create a picture of mutual entanglements in his hometown Ruppertshain. A stranger burns in a caravan, a woman is killed in a hospice. The village is silent, the investigation leads Bodenstein back to the 1970s when his best friend disappeared.

The trauma of childhood returns, suddenly he has to ask uncomfortable questions in a story in which many old acquaintances are involved. And there are more and more deaths. The Commissioner begins to doubt many things, friendship, love and ultimately his job. Whether he throws it or not is one of the big questions in this book. Bodenstein fans will stay tuned for this alone – to find out whether their beloved commissioner disappears into the sunset.

(560 p., 22 euros, Ullstein; also as an audio book)

2. Arne Dahl: seven minus one

So far there are two series by Arne Dahl, both breathtakingly good. Because as exciting as the Swede writes, he is always at least as much concerned with examining the weaknesses of our society. For ten volumes he successfully dissected life in his homeland internationally with the likeable "A group" of the Stockholm police, then came the Europol books, in which the evil spread all over Europe.

Now Arne Dahl starts fresh again: "Seven minus one" has a new team of investigators, this time there are only two of them, the rough Sam Berger and his colleague Molly Blom. It is the most sophisticated book Arne Dahl has ever written.

Starting from the missing person case about a missing girl, he traces a dark trail into the past and the memories of his investigator. Because there is something that Berger associates with this and other crimes. If at the end we exhaust the book from our hands and are immediately withdrawn, there is consolation: Berger and Blom will be back. The new series has just started.

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

(Ü: Kerstin Schöps, 416 p., 17 euros, Piper; also as an audio book)

3. Rudolf Ruschel: Rest in Friedberg

The two slavers and nonprofits Andi and Fipsi waste their lives as temporary workers at a funeral in the Austrian province. But one day when a coffin weighs a suspicious amount, they begin to investigate, spy on their colleagues and get into a mess that even the greatest slavinians are no match for. "Rest in Friedberg" is the best proof that tension doesn't always have to be serious. The thriller offers black humor and wonderfully bizarre characters, but at the same time scores with a carefully turned plot of tension full of twists and eye-opening moments. Another specialty: the very own sound. It's not always politically correct, but it's always fun!

Rest in Friedberg by Rudolf Ruschel

(304 p., 10 euros, btb)

4. Gregor Weber: Asphalt soul

There are authors who write so that you can taste the atmosphere of their story. This exudes, for example, the aroma of beer, bad coffee, meatballs and rocked types. One such is Commissioner Ruben Rubeck, who lives and works in Frankfurt's Bahnhofsviertel. He gets into a shootout in which he injures a Kosovar underworld size. Not Rubeck's fault, but he doesn't trust anyone afterwards. And then his past as a soldier catches up with him. Gregor Weber builds up his story like a good rock song, the furious finale is included.

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

(240 pages, 15 euros, Heyne; also as an audio book)

5. Melanie Raabe: The Truth

This woman is a sensation. At least for crime fans all over the planet, because Melanie Raabe's debut "The Trap" was translated into pretty much every legible language of the western world, and film rights were secured by a large American studio even before the book was published. It all happened in 2015, a year later the daughter of an academic from Jena and a man from Benin had to live with the pressure that such a strong first-time student brought with it.

But the 35-year-old, who lives in Cologne, holds up quite well. "The truth" works because of a dramaturgy similar to "The Trap": a man and a woman in a chamber-style cat-and-mouse game, constant changes in the question of who is the perpetrator and who is the victim, a leading actress whose mind is always there doubts arise again. This woman is called Sarah Petersen, she is in her late 30s, lives with her son in Hamburg, is a teacher and single parent, because her husband Philipp was kidnapped in Colombia seven years ago. Sarah gradually finds herself back in life with his likely death, she cooks again for friends and falls in love very carefully.

But then suddenly the Foreign Office calls: Her husband lives and is free. When she picks him up at the airport, she discovers in the hype about the return of the prominent but shy entrepreneur: This is not Philipp. But nobody wants to believe that. The stranger nests in her. And slowly drives her crazy – especially when he reminds her of her darkest secret.

Raabe balances along the abysses of her figures and skilfully hits several hooks. A (bloodless) yet extremely nerve-wracking psychological thriller.

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

(448 p., 16 euros, btb; also as an audio book)

6. Caroline Eriksson: The Missing

Caroline Eriksson once rowing with a husband and children on a beautiful lake in Sweden. They drove to an island, their family went ashore, they waited on the shore. Then a thought came to her: what if they don't come back now? This is exactly what her novel hero Greta experiences, because her husband and daughter disappear on a shore leave. A riddle – but then Greta herself becomes a suspect. Eriksson has sold this book in 25 countries. No wonder: the nightmare that Greta stumbles through develops an inevitable pull.

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

(T: Wibke Kuhn, 272 pages, 13 euros, Penguin; also as an audio book)

7. Mark Billingham: The Shame of the Living

Self-help groups are one thing: you know everything and yet almost nothing about each other. A great setting for a murder. Found also Mark Billingham and tells of five London addicts who exchange ideas once a week. Then a member is murdered and the police do not make any progress because it is part of the group code to remain silent about the meetings. In terms of tension, Billingham relies entirely on the dynamics of the suspicions in which the five are caught, because of course everyone has their own secret. Once inaugurated, this book is no longer put away.

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

(Ü: Joachim Körber, 448 pages, 20 euros, atrium; also as an audio book)

8. Tim Erzberg: Hellgoland

Helgoland, cut off from the mainland for days due to a storm, is the setting for the first case of the young policewoman Anna Krüger. She finds a severed thumb in her post. A little later someone sends her a mason jar full of blood. But who is playing these games with Anna, who only returned to her childhood island to overcome trauma? Tim Erzberg – by the way, the pseudonym of literary agent Thomas Montasser – has created a dark, oppressive chamber game that remains puzzling for a long time.

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

(400 pages, 16 euros, HarperCollins; also as an audio book)

9. Robert Wilson: The hour of the kidnappers

Six children and teenagers are kidnapped in London within 32 hours. All have rich parents who are ready to meet any demand. Only: you will not receive any. This is where Charles Boxer, specialist in kidnapping cases comes in – and not very squeamish when looking for the victims. Even if it endangers his own environment … Robert Wilson tells quickly and without frills, but his investigator is not a macho, but a sensitive man with a private life on the border to disaster. An exciting figure in an electrifying story.

(T: Kristian Lutze, 480 p., 17 euros, Goldmann)

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

10. Rebecca James: The Truth About Alice

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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"I Wasn't At Alice's Funeral": This Is How This Book Begins. "I already hated Alice and was happy that she was dead. Because Alice had done this to me, Alice had destroyed my life …" We already know a lot about that. But a nifty psycho-thriller can stand it if it is revealed at the beginning that the villain gets his just punishment in the end. Especially since the horror slowly unfolds here in retrospect. What the narrator considered to be a soul mate became a nightmare: Alice, her best friend, the person to whom she entrusts her saddest secret turns out to be a stalker. And don't stop tormenting her until her life is broken up. A horror that every woman can understand immediately. Because we have all experienced this "in small": only in the beginning, often in puberty. But the fear is deep. That is why this topic and this hit thriller full of nerve.

(Ü: Ulrike Wasel / Klaus Timmermann, 320 S, 16.95 Euro, Wunderlich)

11. Anne Holt: God's Number

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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The story: Fundamentalist factions kill everyone who doesn't fit into their fundamentalist factions.

The figures: Dead bishop, dead hustler, dead sculptor – and the investigator couple Inger Johanne Vik and Ingvar Stubø (Holt fans know the two from "With cold intentions" and "What never happened").

The author: Anne Holt, 51, lived with evil for a long time: she worked as a police lawyer, lawyer and minister of justice. Then she created the brittle Commissioner Hanne Wilhemsen – and quickly landed on all bestseller lists.

You have to go through: Conspiracy theories. Norwegian winter. Herbal tea.

You get: Paranoia. Cold feet. Coffee thirst. What is worth it for this incredibly exciting thriller.

Perfect for: All fans of Scandinavian thrillers who love wonderfully normal pairs of investigators.

(T: Gabriele Haefs, 464 pages, 19.95 euros, Piper)

12. Nick McDonell: A high price

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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Expectations are high when a literary child prodigy tackles a political thriller. Nick McDonell, today 26, with his debut "Twelve" 2002 knocked all critics off their feet and the readers with them. At that time, the American talked about his childhood in the New York upper class, and parts of his new novel also take place in the author's world: in Harvard, where McDonell studied. There the CIA prefers to recruit elite agents, McDonell tells of it bitterly and angry. And of how American intelligence agencies try to blame attacks on innocent tribal leaders in Africa. For example Somali Hatashil, whose personal integrity Harvard professor Susan Lowell praised in a book for which she received the Pulitzer Prize. She fights for Hatashil's truth and reputation – and her own. McDonell manages to get a cool look behind the scenes at Harvard. And a crime plot that meets the highest moral standards.

(T: Thomas Gunkel, 304 p., 22 euros, Berlin Verlag)

13. Fran Ray: The Seed

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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The idea for this book says Fran Ray, came to her in Australia, where she first came into contact with genetically modified seeds and pesticides on a farm. From this, the German author (the name is a pseudonym, invented especially for the international market) knitted an eco-thriller in which no less than the fate of humanity is at stake. A genetic researcher is murdered in Paris, in Uganda many people die from an unknown brain disease – in general, there are many indications that the world is facing the greatest environmental disaster in its history. And we owe that to unscrupulous corporations.

(512 pages, 8.90 euros, Bastei-Lübbe)

14th Heinrich Steinfest: Batman's beauty

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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We cannot recommend this book to you without warning you at the same time. Heinrich Steinfest is busy with common thriller ingredients – there is the (one-armed) private detective Cheng, who has already appeared in three other Steinfest crime novels, mysterious murders of actors, a villain with henchmen – but in the end, questions remain, book reality mingles and fiction. "Batman's Beauty" is still great fun to read. This is ensured by weird types and even more weird language pictures, stone festival's humorous and enigmatic tone and his excursions into everyday philosophy, in which, for example, the malice of designer furniture is discussed. Steinfest and his Cheng are sometimes reminiscent of Wolf Haas and his burner – which is not the worst.

(270 p., 8.95 euros, Piper)

15. Håkan Nesser: The gardener's perspective

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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We stop at BRIGITTE Håkan Nesser for one of the best living writers ever. His new book only confirms this opinion. It's about the writer Erik Steinbeck and his wife Winnie, whose four-year-old daughter disappears. 15 months later Erik and Winnie move to New York, Winnie suddenly behaves very strange – and announces that her daughter is still alive …

(Ü: Christel Hildebrandt, 320 pages, 19.99 euros, btb)

The audio book "The Perspective of the Gardener" is also available on our download platform.

16. Ken Bruen: Jack Taylor goes to hell

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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Yes, Ken Bruen writes wonderfully. But he's also really lucky that he has a German translator who translates his snotty Irish whiskey philosophy into our language as brilliantly as Harry Rowohlt – two soul mates have found each other there. Would you like a taste? "I am well past my expiry date and live on pumped time, little pumped time. I should have ended long ago. Many days I wished it would be over." That says Jack Taylor, ex-cop and occasional detective in Galway, Ireland. He is commissioned to investigate the fate of a woman who lived in the notorious, partly sadistic Magdalen order. So drunkard Jack Taylor goes to the servants of the Lord – and ends up in the middle of hell.

(T: Harry Rowohlt, 304 p., 16 euros, atrium)

17. John Grisham: The Law

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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Who writes? A Mississippi lawyer. That was John Grisham namely, and his learned profession is the basis of his success – he is the most successful author of judicial thrillers ever. But he proves that he can do it differently with the seven short stories in this book, which are by no means all crime novels.

Who dies Possibly – we don't want to reveal too much – the bricklayer Bailey in an accident at work after which he urgently needs blood donations. Maybe also Raymond, who is on death row for murder and can only hope for a miracle on the evening of his execution. Definitely Adrian, who has AIDS and returned to his small hometown in the south to die in the 80s.

Who is investigating? Oh, it doesn't matter this time. Grisham tells warmly of the people in his homeland, their fears, mistakes and hopes. There's a bit of crime thriller in it. But also a lot of love.

(T: Kristiana Dorn-Ruhl, Bea Reiter, Imke Walsh-Araya, 384 pages, 19.99 euros, Heyne)

The audio book "The Law" is also available on our download platform.

18. Elizabeth George: Who Dedicated to Death

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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Who writes? Elizabeth George, 61, is an American, it says on the passport. But her heart beats British – her Lynley / Havers novels are more English than mint sauce and vinegar-flavored chips. This is the 16th case of the popular London investigator duo, which made the author world famous.

Who is dead? Based on a real case: a little boy who was kidnapped and murdered by three teenagers. And Jemima Hastings, a young woman from Hampshire who is found in a cemetery in north London. This thriller is full of social criticism, as has been the case with Elizabeth George in previous years.

Who is investigating? A legend returns: Inspector Lynley plunges back into work after his wife's death, but is still marked by his loss. Also there: his congenial partner Barbara Havers.

(T: Charlotte Breuer, Norbert Möllemann, 832 p., 24.90 euros, Blanvalet)

19. Peter James: And tomorrow you're dead

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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Who writes? Peter James, 62, residing near Brighton, England. Son of the former royal glove maker. Wrote successful horror books in the 70s, but found his fans too crazy and switched to crime fiction.

Who is dead? First of all three teenagers who are discovered on the bottom of the English Channel. They lack the important organs, which confuses the police, and that nobody misses them. Your trail leads to Eastern Europe. Who may die: Caitlin, a 15-year-old girl who is desperately waiting for a donor liver.

Who is investigating? As always with Peter James: Roy James, head of the Brighton homicide team. An excellent policeman and person who still has a shadow on him – the disappearance of his wife Sandy ten years ago.

(T: Susanne Goga-Klinkenberg, 528 pages, 18.95 euros, joke)

The audio book "And tomorrow you are dead" is also available on our download platform.

20. Garry Disher: Rostmond

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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The best thing about the novels by Garry Disher: The biggest shit build the criminals, but the investigators are not without mistakes. And so there is no black and no white, but a very realistic story that is always a description of the state of Australian society. Dishers Commissioner Hal Challis and his team are investigating in the small town of Waterloo near Melbourne. There the chaplain of a private school was brutally beaten up and a young woman was murdered. Of all places during Schoolies Week, in which hordes of young school-leavers celebrate their graduation. Disher has quite rightly won the German Crime Award twice.

(T: Peter Torberg, 346 pages, 19.90 euros, Union publisher)

21. Jussi Adler-Olsen: desecration

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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The story: The police in Copenhagen are dealing with a double murder committed 20 years ago. The perpetrator, who was then cracked, appears to have been a pawn sacrifice. The search for the truth by the Copenhagen police at the top of Danish society. There are more pleasant places to find out.

The figures: The special investigator Carl Mørck, headstrong and allergic to authorities. His weird assistant Assad. And their opponents, three sadistic members of the Danish high society.

Star guest: homeless Kimmie – once a friend of the suspects, now their greatest threat. Reminds of Lisbeth Salander.

The author: Jussi Adler-Olsen, 60, is considered the Danish Stieg Larsson. It's a little unfair, after all, the man has his own style. He's not that successful either. But who is that?

We have to go through this: Here sadists are up to mischief. And Adler-Olsen describes what sadists do. Sometimes pretty violent.

We have: A top-class moral thriller.

Perfect for: Intrepid. And people who like to be scared.

(T: Hannes Thiess, 460 pages, 14.90 euros, dtv premium)

The audio book "Desecration" is also available on our download platform.

22.Meg Gardiner: Atonement

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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Jo Beckett, the heroine Meg Gardiners, is a forensic psychologist. We have the protocol of the victim's first soul autopsy in her new case:

On-duty forensic scientist: Jo Beckett

Death: Tasia McFarland, 42, successful pop star, ex-wife of current US President Thomas McFarland

Cause of death: Shot from a colt up close in the neck. The circumstances are unclear. Neither an accident, suicide or third party negligence can be ruled out after the initial investigation.

Time of crime: The beginning of an appearance by the victim. The Colt was a prop on the stage show.

Place: San Francisco baseball stadium.

Witnesses: About 50,000.

Pre-existing illness: The victim had been manic-depressive for over 20 years and was therefore in permanent treatment.

Other comments: The victim felt threatened. People close to him report that the victim felt that "the state" was trying to kill him.

Further investigations are being carried out by Jo Beckett, forensic psychologist, and Officer Amy Tang, SFPD.

(T: Friedrich Mader, 496 p., 19.99 euros, Heyne)

23. Arnaldur Indriðason: Victim of Victim

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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This is a crime thriller that is just a crime thriller and not more: social analysis, sociogram of a group of investigators or portrait of a commissioner looking for meaning. Arnaldur Indriðason Investigator Elinborg does nothing more than: investigate! She has enough to do with it, because she has to solve the murder of a man who tips young women into the drink to rape her. The case is puzzling because there are no witnesses, hardly any traces, and the victims cannot remember anything. So Commissioner Elinborg follows her instinct and jigsaw the truth. The story captivates with its perfect timing, its content is solution-oriented: the outcome is not, as is so often the case, just a necessary evil, but a real resolution.

(Ü: Coletta Bürling, 381 pages, 18.99 euros, Lübbe)

24. Joe Hill: devil stuff

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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Okay, children want to differentiate themselves from their parents, of course. Joseph Hillstrom King has acquired a pseudonym consisting of parts of his two first names. But otherwise? Stephen King's son still lives in the same area of ​​New Hampshire as his famous father, and he does the same job. And if he continues like this, the 38-year-old could also be similarly successful with his surreal, laconic and humorous horror novels. In "Teufelszeug" Ig Perrish, born rich and largely carefree, loses his great love: Merrin is brutally murdered. He himself is suspected. One morning he wakes up with two devil horns that give him uncanny abilities. And arouse his thirst for revenge … This is how the book sounds: "The idea that he was going to die was accompanied by a feeling of relief, as if he would show up and take a breath after staying under water for too long. As a child, Ig would almost drowned once and he suffered from asthma. He knew the feeling of suffocation well and appreciated every breath. "

(T: Hannes Riffel, 544 pages, 19.95 euros, Heyne)

25. Ann Rosman: The daughter of the lighthouse master

Good thrillers: the 25 most exciting thrillers and thrillers

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The author: Ann Rosman, 37, lives on the somewhat snobby but beautiful island of Marstrand near Gothenburg. Sailing is her passion, also in the colder north. She has that in common with her realistic figure Karin Adler.

The heroine: Karin Adler is investigating for the Kripo Göteborg and has been living on her sailing boat since separating from her fiancé, who never bought milk.

The body in the basement: A young man, lovingly buried and walled in airtight 45 years ago, is found doing construction work in the storage cellar of the Hamneskär lighthouse. And brings Karin a case where she can do a lot of boating and causes a lot of trouble to fraudsters, smugglers and old Nazis. She unraveled the secret of the lighthouse master's family with understanding and empathy – if necessary, she drinks her coffee black with important witnesses.

(G: Gisela Kosubek, Rütten & Loening, 349 p., 19.95 euros)

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