8 Addictive Books To Read If You’re Obsessed With True Crime

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While curling up on the couch for a good true crime Netflix binge is our idea of a perfect night in (yes, we’re weird), there’s something to be said about the joy that comes from devouring a page-turning thriller in the middle of the night.

Although we’re not suggesting you give up on your shows or true crime podcasts, 2020 (despite its many, many flaws) has actually gifted us with a number of seriously good books in both the true and not-so-true crime categories.

And whether you favour famous court cases, small-town murders or fictional psycho-noir thrillers (often inspired by real life events), there’s plenty to choose from.

Need a new read? Scroll on for eight excellent books that are sure to please.

Relentless Pursuit: My Fight For The Victims Of Jeffrey Epstein book cover

Relentless Pursuit: My Fight For The Victims of Jeffrey Epstein by Bradley J. Edwards with Brittany Henderson

Penned by the lawyer who represented the victims of convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein for more than a decade, this book has been billed as the definitive retelling of the case against Epstein and the corrupt system that supported him. Beginning with the story of Courtney Wild, the first victim to tell Edwards what she’d been through, the tome gives a blow-by-blow account of how Edwards fought on behalf of his clients, providing stunning details that have never been shared before. 

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The Scientist and The Spy book cover

The Scientist and the Spy: A True Story of China, the FBI, and Industrial Espionage by Mara Hvistendahl

Fancy a little tale of industrial espionage? Without giving the goods away, this true story by Pulitzer Prize finalist Mara Hvistendahl follows a Chinese scientist who is hunted by the US governments for attempting to steal trade secrets. Likened to a Hitchcock movie by Booklist, this is one whodunit you won’t want to put down. 

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What's Left Of Me Is Yours book cover

What’s Left Of Me Is Yours  by Stephanie Scott

Within the Tokyo underworld there is an industry that exists to break up marriages. It is known today as wakaresaseya — agents who, for a fee, can be hired by one spouse to seduce the other and provide grounds for divorce on favourable terms. But when Kaitaro Nakamura is hired to seduce Rina, something unexpected happens he falls in love. Based on a real case, Rina moves in with him after the divorce, unaware of his role in the demise of her marriage. But the truth inevitably resurfaces… with tragic consequences. 

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The Phantom Prince: My Life With Ted Bundy book cover

The Phantom Prince: My Life With Ted Bundy by Elizabeth Kendall

While this is technically an updated edition of an old book, it still very much deserves a spot on your reading list for 2020. Written by Elizabeth Kendall, the former partner of serial killer Ted Bundy, the memoir details Kendall’s six-year-long relationship with Bundy, with the update including startling new material from the author and her daughter, Molly, who until this year, has never shared her story. 

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Nothing Can Hurt You book cover

Nothing Can Hurt You by Nicola Maye Goldberg

Touted as Little Fires Everywhere meets The Virgin SuicidesNothing Can Hurt You is a haunting debut novel that, frankly, deserves to be turned into a miniseries. It’s loosely based on the real murder of a college student by her wealthy boyfriend, who gets off thanks to his money and a plea of “temporary insanity”. Told by a chorus of different people on the periphery of the murder, from the courtroom reporter to the person who finds the body, it’s truly gripping stuff.

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The Ghosts of Eden Park by Karen Abbott

The Ghosts Of Eden Park by Karen Abbott

A New York Times bestseller, this epic true crime story tells the tale of the most successful bootlegger in American history, the women who pursued him and the murder that shocked the jazz age. Skilfully combining history with artistic flair, this stranger-than-fiction novel is perfect for those who have a fascination with the glamorous excesses of the 1920s and dark tales of deception. 

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The Swap by Robyn Harding

The Swap by Robyn Harding

Low Morrison, the daughter of hippie parents in a dreary island hometown, is not your average teen. And when newcomer Freya, an ethereal beauty and formerly famous social media influencer appears on the scene, Low quickly falls under her spell. Revelling in Low’s adoration, Freya shares her darkest desires and secrets, making Low feel like she belongs… until Jamie enters their lives. Freya, Jamie and their husbands quickly become friends, leaving Low an outsider once again. Then, after a boozy dinner party one night, Freya suggests swapping partners, and what should have been an innocuous fling between consenting adults, completely alters the course of their lives. And gives Low the perfect chance to unleash her growing resentment. 

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The Half Sister by Sandie Jones

The Half Sister by Sandie Jones

Siblings Kate and Lauren are always there for each other. Then, at one their weekly Sunday lunches, while they’re still grieving their father’s death, they get a knock on the door that changes everything. Their visitor, Jess, claims to be their half-sister, the product of a long-hidden affair. Their mother Rose is devastated and Kate and Lauren believe Jess is lying. But as the fall-out beings, it becomes clear that Jess is not the only one with secrets, things are far from what they appear.

Buy it here

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