Few authors know how to craft a good domestic thriller like Shari Lapena.
The internationally bestselling author has been on a roll since The Couple Next Door, with subsequent books that have kept fans glued to the pages before eagerly awaiting her next release.
After all, she writes the kind of books that you just can’t put down – the kind that have you falsely telling yourself you’ll just read “just one more chapter” until you start to hear birds chirping outside.
If like me, you’ve flown through every Shari Lapena book there is (they’re all page-turners, so it doesn’t take long), then you’re probably eager to read more books from authors who are just like her.
Well, you’ve landed at the right place, as I’ve got all the authors you need to know about.
Can’t enough of Shari Lapena’s books? Then you need to read these 5 authors: Lisa Jewell, Riley Sager, Ruth Ware, Lucy Foley, and Alex Michaelides. Find out more about these authors below, along with book recommendations.
Books By Shari Lapena
Fun fact: Shari Lapena used to be an English teacher and lawyer before she became an international bestselling author.
Things Go Flying and Happiness Economics were the first books she wrote and published, but it wasn’t until The Couple Next Door hit bookshelves that she became the new must-read thriller writer on the scene.
The Couple Next Door was published in 2016. It follows couple Anne and Marco Conti who seem to have the perfect life until a crime happens at a party they attend next door.
One clue leads to another, and soon enough the perfect couple are pointing their fingers at one another, no longer sure if they know each other as well as they think they do.
Shari Lapena followed up The Couple Next Door with A Stranger in the House, which didn’t disappoint readers who found themselves glued to the pages of her first book.
Alongside The Couple Next Door and A Stranger in the House, Shari Lapena is also widely known for An Unwanted Guest, Someone We Know, and The End of Her.
Since 2008, Shari Lapena has published eight books in total, all of which are well worth reading if you enjoy suspense, mystery, relatable everyday characters, and unguessable twists.
Her books share similar themes such as deception, betrayal, infidelity, family life, friendship, secrecy, and paranoia.
5 Authors Like Shari Lapena
Like Shari Lapena, Lisa Jewell is well known for her page-turning novels that often get read in one night.
She’s been writing books for over two decades, most popular for her 2017 novel Then She Was Gone.
Then She Was Gone follows main character Laurel Mack, whose daughter disappeared years ago.
She meets a new man—a real charmer, at that—but something’s not right – because the man’s daughter looks exactly like Laurel’s missing daughter.
The big question: Is he really who he says he is?
Lisa Jewell is also known for The Family Upstairs, published in 2019. And yep, you bet it’s just as gripping as Then She Was Gone.
- Lisa Jewell’s books revolve around gripping mysteries that will have you asking questions and searching for answers right from the start
- Many of Lisa Jewell’s novels are domestic thrillers dealing with relationships and family life
- Despite being a great thriller author, there’s nothing new or unique about Lisa Jewell’s writing style
Themes: domestic life, secrecy, paranoia, duplicity
Riley Sager is another popular author who knows how to weave a good mystery.
He’s experimented with the horror genre as well, most notably with his 2020 novel Home Before Dark.
Home Before Dark sees Maggie Holt return to her childhood home, Baneberry Hall, to restore it for sale.
The thing is, something bad happened there 25 years ago, something horrifying that she has long repressed. And it doesn’t take long for her to start remembering.
If you love domestic thrillers and horror novels, Home Before Dark is a book you’ll struggle to put down.
Sager is also known for The Last Time I Lied, a book that takes place at a summer camp with a chilling history that protagonist Emma returns to face.
- Riley Sager’s novels include elements of horror – ideal if you like horror books just as much as thrillers and mysteries
- The characters in Riley Sager’s novels are well fleshed out, making them feel real, believable, and relatable
- Some of Riley Sager’s novels feel the same as one another, following a similar plot about characters revisiting their past
Themes: memories, childhood, family, friendship, betrayal, isolation
Ruth Ware is a name you might recognize since her books have been on both The New York Times and Sunday Times bestseller lists.
One of these is The Woman in Cabin 10, a psychological thriller that’s become her most acclaimed novel to date.
And if you like Agatha Christie, The Woman in Cabin 10 is a book that you’ll be invested in from the first page.
It’s set on a cruise ship and follows main character Lo, who witnesses someone getting thrown overboard.
But with passenger numbers accounted for, Lo finds herself asking two questions: Who was thrown overboard, and, more importantly, who did it?
In a Dark, Dark Wood is another must-read Ruth Ware book, which was published one year before The Woman in Cabin 10 in 2015.
- Fans of Agatha Christie, young and old, will feel right at home reading Ruth Ware’s books
- Ruth Ware heavily involves psychology in her books, which will have new readers second-guessing their predictions with every chapter
- Readers who are tired of classic whodunits might find Ruth Ware’s books formulaic and predictable
Themes: paranoia, secrecy, deception, isolation
Lucy Folley is a British author who shot to the top of bestseller lists with her 2020 book The Guest List, which is about a murder that happens at a wedding – on a secluded island, no less.
It switches between an untrustworthy cast of characters, with each chapter leaving you guessing—and changing your mind—over who was the culprit.
So if you’re a big fan of whodunits, The Guest List is just as riveting as reading any of Shari Lapena’s thrillers.
Lucy Foley is also known for The Paris Apartment, a suspense-fueled mystery thriller that definitely checks all the boxes if you love domestic thriller books.
- Lucy Foley is the newest must-read author on the scene for mystery and thriller books
- Readers who love first-person narration and switching POVs will love Lucy Foley’s books
- Despite her talent for writing mysteries, Lucy Foley’s character dialog often feels forced and unnatural
Themes: distrust, infidelity, family, friendship, marriage
Alex Michaelides doesn’t have as many books under his belt as the other authors on this list, but one of his books racked up over 300 million sales, topping both The New York Times and Sunday Times bestseller lists when it was first published in 2019.
That book is The Silent Patient, which centers on Alicia Berenson: a celebrated painter who, one day, out of the blue, shoots her husband dead.
The incident makes the headlines and Alicia is admitted to a psychiatric hospital – never to speak a word again.
Then comes Theo Faber, a psychotherapist who thinks he can get her to talk to reveal what really happened and why she did it.
After the global success of The Silent Patient, Alex Michaelides published The Maidens in 2021, another page-turning mystery thriller that involves murder, suspicion, paranoia, and obsession – a book Shari Lapena fans should also check out.
- Alex Michaelides’ books are exciting page-turners that you won’t put down until you figure out what happened
- Alex Michaelides does well to flesh out his characters without stalling the plot
- The Silent Patient, in particular, can be both a predictable and confusing read – especially toward the end
Themes: domestic life, infidelity, duplicity, distrust
And there you have it: five authors like Shari Lapena that you need to read ASAP (or at least add to your TBR list!).
These authors are similar to Shari Lapena in that their books present suspenseful mysteries with relatable characters and unexpected twists – all sure to have you flying through the pages from start to finish.
The books I’ve recommended from each author also include similar themes touched on in Shari Lapena’s books, such as distrust, paranoia, secrecy, and domestic life.
So what are you waiting for? If you love books by Shari Lapena, start reading these authors as soon as you get a chance!
Frequently Asked Questions
What Are The Main Themes In Shari Lapena’s Books?
Shari Lapena, the author best known for The Couple Next Door, touches on various themes in her books, including distrust, duplicity, paranoia, secrecy, infidelity, and domestic life.
What Books Are Similar To The Couple Next Door?
Books similar to The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena include Behind Closed Doors by B.A. Paris, The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware, The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn, and Then She Was Gone by Lisa Jewell.