Sounds Thrilling: Best New Mystery/Thriller Audiobooks

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Susie (she/her) is a queer writer originally from Little Rock, now living in Washington, DC. She is the author of QUEERLY BELOVED and the forthcoming LOOKING FOR A SIGN from Dial Press/Random House. You can find her on Instagram @susiedoom.

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Until July 31, Amazon Prime members can get 3 months of Audible for free with a trial. That’s 3 audiobooks for free! We’d recommend THE WOMAN IN ME by Britney Spears, JUST FOR THE SUMMER by Abby Jimenez, or JAMES by Percival Everett. Choose from hundreds of thousands of titles.

We’re officially in the thickest heat of the summer reading season. It’s arguably the best time of year to pop in your earbuds and lay out in the sun while listening to mystery audiobooks full of drama and suspense. Looking for the best new mystery/thriller audiobooks to quench your thirst? We’ve got ‘em! Check out these gripping new audiobooks full of serial killers, jaded detectives, and big secrets. Whether you’re into gritty suspense, legal thrillers, historical settings, dark romance, unreliable narrators, or paranormal mysteries, we’ve got something for every audiobook listener.

Personally, the summer is my favorite time to read twisted, scary, edge-of-your-seat mysteries, thrillers, and horror. Why? Because it’s the time of year with the most sunlight! Yes, I’m a little bit chicken, and reading something too frightening after dark is liable to keep me up all night listening for ax murderers and monsters in the closet. So I like to do my skin-crawlingest mystery and thriller reading while the sun is shining bright. Thank heavens for July! This month, you’ll find me peacefully sipping lemonade in the shade while listening to stories of the goriest, grittiest, most demented things humans can do. Sounds like summer fun to me!

Best New Mystery/Thriller Audiobooks for Summer 2024

audiobook cover of The Lions Denaudiobook cover of The Lions Den

The Lions’ Den by Iris Mwanza

If you’re a fan of literary legal thrillers that expand your mind and show you new perspectives, The Lions’ Den should absolutely be on our summer listening list. Grace Zulu is a brand new lawyer ready to prove herself in 1990s Zambia. So when she hears about a young queer dancer named Bessy arrested by corrupt cops, she decides to take on her first pro bono case. But after she meets Bessy and finds him clearly beaten and abused, she criticizes the police and loses access to her client. Then Bessy disappears from his cell. Grace is determined to find him, even if it means digging into a world of crooked politicians, dirty cops, and government-sponsored homophobia. Mwanza has crafted an expansive story about queerness, AIDS, corruption, and justice in Zambia while also making it a gripping story you can’t help but get sucked into. Narrator Chi Mhende brings that story to life with all the drama, heartbreak, and emotion it demands.

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The God of the Woods by Liz Moore

This deeply layered historical mystery audiobook will show you the dark side of the woods — and of humanity. It’s always concerning when a child goes missing at summer camp. But it’s a big deal when the 13-year-old daughter of Camp Emerson’s wealthy owners, the Van Laars, disappears from her bunk during the summer of 1975 in the Adirondacks. It’s an even bigger deal because it’s the same way her older brother went missing 14 years ago, and he was never found. Through the perspectives of the girl’s mother, camp counselor, bunkmate, and the detective assigned to her case, we piece together the complicated history and dangerous secrets of the Van Laar family. Narrator Saskia Maarleveld weaves the story together with enthralling voice acting, making it an unforgettable listen.

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Blood in the Cut by Alejandro Nodarse

You won’t be able to hit pause on this gritty, suspenseful crime thriller about grief, gentrification, and greed. Iggy is given a compassionate release from prison a week early after the death of his mother, but he has little time to mourn when he quickly finds his father spiraling, their family in debt, and the butcher shop they’ve run for generations at risk of closing. Making his way through the seedy underbelly of Miami, Iggy must face the rival butcher trying to put his family out of business and the big game hunter who’s entangled Iggy’s father in a risky get-rich-quick scheme in the Everglades. It’s a modern noir thriller with a captivating narrative voice, performed spectacularly by actor Danny Pino.

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The Bitter Truth by Shanora Williams

Want a mystery/thriller that will keep you guessing all the way to the gritty end? Then it’s got to be The Bitter Truth by Shanora Williams. Dominic Baker is running for governor of North Carolina, and one of his strongest assets is his smart, determined partner Jolene, who is far more than just a trophy wife. As strange mistakes and increasingly dangerous accidents start happening, Dominic and Jo notice the same woman appearing all along the campaign trail. Dominic claims he has no clue who she is, but Jo finds his behavior suspicious, so she decides to look into it herself. But as she delves into Dominic’s seemingly spotless reputation, she finds he’s got some dark secrets that might put everything they’ve worked for at risk. With dual narration by Sable Lyn and Roderick Ross, it’s a rollercoaster of a thriller with surprises at every turn.

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Love Letters to a Serial Killer by Tasha Coryell

Do you love true crime, romance, and twisty mysteries? Then this thrilling audiobook is for you. True-crime-obsessed Hannah falls down the rabbit hole of the internet researching four murdered women in Florida and the man accused of killing them. She finds writing angry letters to William, the attractive young lawyer and supposed serial killer being held in prison, surprisingly soothing. But then William writes back, and it turns out he’s clever, charming, and intriguing. So when a fifth woman is murdered while William is incarcerated and he’s found not guilty of any of the crimes, he calls Hannah immediately after his release, and they strike up a romance. But the closer they get, the more Hannah starts to wonder if the police got it wrong. Andi Arndt’s narration makes Tasha Coryell’s deliciously twisted mystery a one-of-a-kind listening experience.

audiobook cover of You Know What You Didaudiobook cover of You Know What You Did

You Know What You Did by K.T. Nguyen

If you’re looking for a twisty psychological thriller with an unreliable narrator, K.T. Nguyen’s You Know What You Did is a must-listen. Annie’s worked hard to control her OCD and build a stable life for herself after a difficult childhood. But following the unexpected loss of her mother, a Vietnam war refugee, Annie’s OCD resurfaces — along with dark fixations, missing persons, police investigations, and missing memories. Annie distances herself from her husband and daughter because she doesn’t trust herself around them, but is it enough to keep them safe? With captivating narration by Kim Mai Guest, it’s a dark, twisty tale of generational trauma and the lengths we take to protect our loved ones from our inner selves.

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Butter by Asako Yuzuki, translated by Polly Barton

This thrilling, food-centric book about a journalist interviewing a serial killer is making huge waves in Japan, and now that it’s been translated and released in the U.S., it’s time to hop aboard the Butter train. Chef Manako Kajii is on the front page of every paper after being accused of conning and poisoning local businessmen with her food. Despite her fame, Manako refuses to speak to any press — until Rika, a low-level reporter and the only woman at her news office, writes Manako asking for her beef stew recipe. Manako invites Rika in, but only to talk about food, something Rika hasn’t cared much about before. As Rika gets to know the accused serial killer, Manako’s perspective on flavor starts to change Rika in unexpected ways. It’s a propulsive, deliciously dark story of murder, narrated with style by actress Hanako Footman.

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One Last Breath by Ginny Myers Sain

Ginny Myers Sain is a brilliant YA paranormal mystery author who knows how to keep you on the edge of your seat, especially when it comes to figuring out if the evil afoot is supernatural or the work of specially twisted humans. Each of her books has a lush, creepy setting. In her latest, that setting is a small town in Florida still haunted by the death of two teen girls in the 1990s. Tru has grown up in the shadow of those murders, fascinated by the lingering mystery and obsessed with free diving in the freshwater springs where their bodies were found. When a strange new girl named Rio comes to town and finds herself equally drawn to the mystery, it seems Tru and Rio might have an otherworldly tie to the victims. Voiced by Audie Award-winning narrator Sophie Amoss, it’s a spine-tingling story that will have listeners holding their breath through the last chapter.

We hope you enjoyed these best new mystery/thriller audiobooks! You might also like:

Time To Sleuth: 14 New Mystery, Thriller, and True Crime Books for June 2024

Get Ready to Read 10 of the Best Thrilling YA Heist Novels

10 of the Best Spy Novels to Keep You Turning the Pages

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