Five Authors Dean Koontz Fans Should Read

Authors like Dean Koontz

Today, I’m introducing five authors Dean Koontz fans need to read. Without question, Dean Koontz is a premiere author in the suspense genre and a masterful wordsmith.

Turn the calendar back three decades, and most readers considered Dean Koontz a staple in the horror genre, almost as popular as Stephen King. Though Koontz has produced some truly frightening novels (Intensity remains one of my favorites), he’s best described as a suspense and thriller writer. Poetic prose sets Koontz apart from other authors. I often find myself looking up words when I read a Dean Koontz story, and strangely enough, I don’t find it distracting. Reading a Koontz novel can feel like enrolling in the world’s most entertaining literature class.

Despite the dark content prevalent in many Koontz stories, he often ends on a positive note and leaves us optimistic about the future. This is just one of many reasons I consider Koontz my favorite suspense author. He can’t write enough books!

Good news. While you wait for his next classic to arrive at your favorite bookstore, there are five authors Koontz fans love to read voraciously. Even better news: if you’re a Kindle Unlimited subscriber, you can read many of these authors for free!

Step into the dark and read your FREE thriller from bestselling author Dan Padavona

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Gregg Olsen

Amazon charts bestselling author Gregg Olsen is a suspense and thriller writer from Washington State. Over the years, he has established a reputation for his meticulous research and his ability to delve deeply into the psychological aspects of crime, often exploring the darkest facets of human nature. His works often blend real-life events with fictional elements, resulting in stories that are both gripping and terrifyingly realistic.

One of the hallmarks of Olsen’s writing is his adeptness at character development, bringing to life both the perpetrators of heinous acts and the investigators who doggedly pursue them. His novels often offer readers a window into the minds of his characters, shedding light on their motivations and actions, making for an engrossing reading experience.

In addition to his full-length novels, Gregg Olsen has written a number of true crime books, showcasing his dedication to understanding the intricacies of real-life criminal cases. His journalistic approach to these works combines a detailed examination of the facts with a compelling narrative style, ensuring that readers are both informed and entertained.

Over his prolific career, Olsen has gained recognition not just for his storytelling prowess but also for his commitment to presenting a balanced view of the events he depicts, always striving to treat his subjects with respect and empathy. Whether diving into the mind of a fictional killer or recounting the chilling details of a real-life crime, Gregg Olsen has solidified his position as a master of the thriller and true crime genres.

Olsen built a massive readership with his Megan Carpenter and Port Gamble thrillers. His novel “Lying Next to Me” reached #1 in the entire Amazon store. Known for striking plot twists and complex characters, Gregg Olsen is an author every fan of Dean Koontz should get to know.

Freida McFadden

An Amazon bestselling author, Freida McFadden writes psychological thrillers with a remarkable background: she’s a practicing physician specializing in brain injuries. While McFadden has penned her share of medical humor novels, she’s known as a staple in the suspense and thriller genres. Her novel “The Locked Door” garnered over 2200 5-star reviews.

What’s genuinely cool about Freida McFadden’s books is the authentic touch she brings to the table. Since she’s knee-deep in the medical world in real life, the scenarios, jargons, and settings in her novels feel incredibly real, almost like you’re peeking behind the curtain of a bustling hospital or a tense operating room. For readers who appreciate those little details that make a story feel grounded and believable, her works are a must-read. And hey, while getting lost in her gripping narratives, you might just pick up a medical fact or two! If you’re keen on thrillers with a genuine touch of medical expertise, you might want to add some of her titles to your reading list.

If you haven’t read Freida McFadden, what are you waiting for?

Darkwater Cove crime thriller


A killer is watching . . .

She’s running from a psychopath. And he knows what frightens her.

After she’s stabbed in the line of duty, FBI Agent Darcy Gellar moves her family to a sleepy seaside community. Living beside the ocean, she finds tranquility…until the police discover the body of a murdered woman on the beach. The village blames her son, a misunderstood boy with anger issues.

Is a serial killer stalking Darkwater Cove?

Darcy knows the boy is innocent. But how does she convince an aggressive police detective? If she fails, her son will go to prison, and the murderer will strike again.

Can Darcy save her child from the police and a bloodthirsty killer?

Karen McQuestion

As of September 2021, guess which author has the #1 ranked novel in women’s crime fiction. No, it’s not Lisa Jewell, Leslie Wolfe, or Melinda Leigh. It’s Karen McQuestion, with her brilliant thriller The Moonlight Child.

Karen McQuestion might not be the first name that pops up when you think about thriller authors, but let me tell you, she’s worth the dive! Not only does she dabble in thrillers, but her versatility also extends to other genres like romance, fantasy, and young adult. But regardless of the genre, Karen has this uncanny ability to keep you glued to the pages, anxiously flipping (or swiping) to find out what happens next. Her narratives are not just about the suspense but also about deep character development and emotional connections. If you’re someone who likes a side of heart with your adrenaline rush, Karen’s your gal.

Now, diving a bit into her thriller side, McQuestion’s books often play with elements of mystery and the unknown, teasing readers with twists and turns that are hard to see coming. Her writing style is engaging, making even the most mundane details seem intriguing. And the best part? You never really know what you’re gonna get with Karen. One book might have you exploring a family’s dark secrets, while the next might throw you into a whirlwind chase against time. So, if you’re in the mood for a fresh voice in the thriller scene that can surprise you in the best ways, give Karen McQuestion’s books a spin. Trust me; there’s a good chance they’ll find a permanent spot on your shelf!

Combining page-turning suspense with a love-conquers-all theme, Karen McQuestion delivers a thoughtful thriller and mystery that will whet the appetite of any Dean Koontz fan.

Loreth Anne White

Oh, if you’re on the hunt for some atmospheric thrillers that send a chill down your spine, then Loreth Anne White should be right up your alley! Known for multi-layered plots, deep characters, and haunting storylines, Loreth Anne White is a rising star in the thriller and suspense genre. Hailing from South Africa but now calling the wilds of British Columbia her home, White’s surroundings play a significant role in her works. She masterfully weaves the remote, often unforgiving landscapes into her narratives, making the setting almost a character in itself. Her stories are the kind where you can almost feel the mist on your skin, hear the distant call of a raven, and sense the isolation of her characters. It’s all so vivid that you might want to snuggle up in a warm blanket while reading, even if it’s a sunny day outside.

Loreth Anne White’s strength lies not just in her evocative settings but also in her complex plots and multi-dimensional characters. Her thrillers often have layers upon layers of mysteries, and just when you think you’ve figured things out, she throws in a curveball. And trust me, these are not your run-of-the-mill plot twists. They’re the kind that make you go, “Whoa, I didn’t see that coming!” Her characters, meanwhile, are flawlessly fleshed out, making you root for them, feel their pain, and sometimes even yell at them (in a good way, of course!). If you’re up for a thrilling ride that’s as atmospheric as it’s suspenseful, then do yourself a favor and dive into one of Loreth Anne White’s books. You’re in for quite the adventure!

If you love true crime, Loreth Anne White brings the heat in “Beneath Devil’s Bridge”, a gripping mystery that will keep you guessing until the climax. Amazon lists “Beneath Devil’s Bridge” as one of the most popular novels among Dean Koontz fans who read “The Other Emily”.

Are you enjoying this list? While you’re here, we invite you to download a FREE psychological thriller from bestselling Amazon author Dan Padavona!


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Patricia MacDonald

What if your boyfriend committed the ultimate crime? That’s the teaser Patricia MacDonald uses to lure us into her wildly popular thriller “From Cradle to Crave”. Few authors write suspenseful page-turners on Patricia MacDonald’s level. So it’s no surprise Dean Koontz fans gravitate to MacDonald’s thrillers.

If you haven’t had the pleasure of diving into one of her books yet, you’re in for a treat. MacDonald has a special touch when it comes to domestic suspense. You know, those stories that unearth dark secrets from seemingly everyday lives, turning a tranquil neighborhood or a close-knit family into a hotbed of tension and mystery. Her novels often revolve around intricate family dynamics, past traumas, and the skeletons we all try to hide in our closets. When you pick up a Patricia MacDonald book, you’re not just signing up for a thriller; you’re strapping in for an emotional roller coaster.

Now, what’s super engaging about MacDonald’s style is how she crafts her characters. They’re relatable, multi-dimensional, and oh-so-human. When reading her books, it’s hard not to get emotionally invested, feeling every high and low with the protagonists. It’s like watching a drama unfold among people you’ve known forever. And while the twists and turns keep you on your toes, it’s the deeply human element of her stories that’ll stay with you long after you’ve turned the last page. So, if you’re in the mood for a thriller that hits close to home and tugs at your heartstrings, Patricia MacDonald should definitely be on your radar. Go ahead and dive into her world; just be prepared for a few sleepless nights!

If you love Dean Koontz, you won’t go wrong with these five authors. Also, check out our list of best thriller authors!

In the mood for something new to read? I’ve made Dead and Buried free to download! Dead and Buried is the prequel to my bestselling Darkwater Cove psychological thriller series. 

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