There are good books; then there are great books which incite total imagination and thrill. A compilation of the best thriller books is listed below.

The Secret Agent

Written by Joseph Conrad in 1907, this century-old book is one of Conrad’s most excellent enduring novels written. The theme revolves around a secret agent embroiled in a plot to blow up Greenwich Observatory. It predicts the rise of terrorism.

The Manchurian Candidate

Richard Condon in 1959 published this novel set in the time of the Cold War. It involves brainwashing an entire company of soldiers by Korean Communists to allow their officer become a sleeper in the American Government. It is complex and steeped in the paranoia of the time.

The Hunt for Red October

Written and published by Tom Clancy in 1984. This novel revolves during the tense times of Cold War when a Russian nuclear submarine captain defects to the West while bringing his craft along with him. Jack Ryan is the main hero through his efforts to stop the Russians. It is an incredibly intense storyline.

Killing Floor

Authored by Lee Child in 1997, revolves around an action-packed thriller where Jack Reacher is arrested in a town in the American south and is charged for the undue murder of his brother which authorities soon realize was a big mistake.

On Her Majesty’s Secret Service

The tenth bond book released by Ian Fleming in 1963 reveals the spy in a much softer and gentle light where he gets married and settles down, not for long though while battling Ernst Blofield.

The Spy Who Came in from the Cold

Written by John Le Carre in 1963 is le Carre’s third novel which is a marvelous bleak perspective on the Cold War which depicts them at their morally repugnant worst.

Where Eagles Dare

Alistair MacLean in 1967 wrote the novel which later turned out to be one of the greatest war films ever made. It is a full-on violent action about double-crossing spies combined with incredible fistfights.

The Andromeda Strain

Being Michael Crichton’s first novel published in 1969 was a huge success. His technique involved channeling humanity’s worst fear of extraterrestrial organisms wiping out the human race.


Written by Stephen King in 1974, this terrifying novel involves around a high school girl who uses her telekinetic powers to punish and induce pain to her class bullies. This novel is written in an unusual style of newspaper clippings and articles.

Marathon Man

This iconic thriller written by William Goldman in 1974 involves everything from betrayal, beautiful dame, diamonds, evil Nazis and sadistic dentists.

The Bourne Identity

This thriller series written by Robert Ludlum in 1980 revolves around, a wounded man washed ashore on a thrilling journey to reconstruct his past and figure out his true identity.


Written by Peter Benchley in 1974, this total thriller revolves around a massive shark that starts eating people of a resort in Long Island.