10 Books for Fans of Netflix’s The Watcher | ThrillerFix

The Watcher has quickly established itself as the breakout streaming hit of the fall. Based on the true story of a couple who purchases their dream home only to receive threatening and ominous letters from someone known only as The Watcher, the series is the latest hit from Dahmer producer Ryan Murphy. After you've binge-watched the first season, here are 10 books that have the same kind of creepy suspense.

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

At the heart of The Watcher is a story about surveillance and obsession. Perhaps no recent mystery-thriller novel covered those topics better than The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins. To hide the shame of being fired from her job from her roommate, a young woman continues to take the commuter train every 

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morning and evening. On her daily rides, she becomes obsessed with watching a young couple and imagining their perfect life. That is until she thinks she sees a murder and reports it to the police. A suspenseful puzzle of a story then unfolds, making the reader unsure whom to trust. Read here.

The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson

Both The Watcher and the Circleville Letters case feature a cunning criminal mastermind who seems to possess near-paranormal powers of observation. An equally nefarious and mystical villain is at the heart of The Devil in the White City: A Saga of Magic and Murder at the Fair that Changed America, author Erik 

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Larson's account of the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago. Henry H. Holmes was a young doctor who built a hotel just west of the fairgrounds — and then used it as a venue for unspeakable torture and murder. In a case of the truth being stranger than fiction, Larson's true crime story reads just like the best thriller novels. Read here.

The Haunted by Bentley Little

The Haunted, from horror maestro Bentley Little, starts with a premise similar to The Watcher. Like The Watcher, a young family has bought their dream home, but after moving in, things quickly go wrong. The couple's daughter receives menacing text messages, and nightmares plague their son. Although

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The Haunted is fiction, Little takes what could be a standard haunted house tale and weaves in historical details to give his story an unnerving sense of authenticity. Read here.

The Exorcist's House by Nick Roberts

The concept of "the dream home becomes the nightmare home" is given a unique twist in The Exorcist's House. A husband and wife and their teenage daughter move from Ohio to a charming farmhouse in the hills of West Virginia. All seems well until they discover a boarded-up room in the basement. The

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room has been hiding a well and a lot of crucifixes. It turns out an exorcist previously owned the home, and the family's discovery has opened up Pandora's box. The Exorcist's House author Nick Roberts has ties to West Virginia, and lots of local details and true-to-life characters make this one a non-stop scare. Read here.

The Locked Door by Freida McFadden

A different take on the family home-gone-bad can be found in Freida McFadden's psychological thriller The Locked Door. When we meet Nora Davis, she's 11 years old and living what seems to be a picture-perfect life — until the police show up at her home. They're after her father, who is revealed to be a 

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notorious serial killer. Decades later, Nora is now a surgeon, and her father is spending life in prison. All seems well until someone tries to frame her for a murder that matches her father's M.O. But who would do that? And what's behind the locked door of her basement? The Locked Door delivers one shocking twist after the next. Read here.

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The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson

Before Ryan Murphy brought The Watcher to Netflix, the streaming service adapted Shirley Jackson's 1959 novel The Haunting of Hill House into a series. Both shows share a sense of unnerving suspense. If you enjoyed either, you should read this classic book that has thrilled several generations. A notorious 

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New England estate is the setting where a group has decided to find out if the legends of paranormal activity are true or not. Far from the usual haunted house fare, The Haunting of Hill House engrosses readers in suspense from its first page to the shocking conclusion. Read here.

You A Novel by Caroline Kepnes

No discussion of Netflix thriller adaptations would be complete without a mention of You. Both series feature the creeping dread of unseen evil lurking near your home. Just as The Watcher has an omnipotent eye on the residents of 657 Boulevard, You has Joe obsessing and stalking the women in his neighborhood. 

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The show has become one of Netflix's most successful, and the four-book series by Caroline Kepnes is equally beloved. Read here.

Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

Gillian Flynn's first novel, Sharp Objects, formed the basis for a great HBO mini-series starring Amy Adams. Somehow, Dark Places still hasn't been adapted for the screen, even though it would be perfect for a streaming series. The story of a woman finding out the truth about the murder of her mother and sister when she 

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was a child (whether she wants to or not), Dark Places is filled with the same gripping suspense as Flynn's other works. Read here.

The Perfect Marriage by Jeneva Rose

Family secrets also drive the plot of Jeneva Rose's psychological page-turner, The Perfect Marriage. The plot concerns successful attorney Sarah and her husband Adam, a writer struggling to get published. After Adam's mistress is found stabbed to death, Sarah takes on a case she could never have imagined 

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–– defending her husband against murder charges. The Perfect Marriage could have been a soap opera on the printed page, but instead is a twist-filled thriller with an ending that's anything but predictable. Read here.

Golden Boy A Murder Among the Manhattan Elite by John Glatt

Much like The Watcher, Durst eluded detection and capture for years. In Durst's case, that was thanks in no small part to this wealth and privilege. Another real-life example along the same lines is Thomas Gilbert Jr., a New York City socialite accused of murdering his father. Gilbert grew up with incredible luxury and 

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wealth. However, the finer things in life didn't deter his life of crime. If anything, they enabled his descent into drugs, violence, and elaborate schemes. A gripping true crime tale from journalist and author John Glatt, Golden Boy is a riveting account of Gilbert's rise and fall. Read here.

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Bonus Picks! Watch and Listen to These Titles Similar to Netflix’s The Watcher

The Trail Went Cold

On his long-running podcast The Trail Went Cold, host Robin Warder covers bizarre unsolved true crime cases like The Watcher each week. The Trail Went Cold regularly covers topics featured on the classic TV show Unsolved Mysteries, but any claim that still needs answers is fair game. You can listen to 

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the show on Apple Podcasts and other podcast platforms. Listen here.

Unsolved Mysteries

2. Unsolved Mysteries

Speaking of Unsolved Mysteries, Netflix has revived and updated it. With three volumes of episodes, the Netflix reboot covers a wide range of unique mysteries with style.

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