Thriller, Mystery & Suspense: For Your Ears

One of the main reasons people give for not indulging in their passion for reading great thriller books? Lack of time. It makes sense. We are busy people these days and taking the time for a fiction reading fix sometimes doesn’t happen as frequently as we’d like.

That’s no reason to give up this simple pleasure though! Today, we’re going to look at some other options: thriller, mystery, and suspense for your ears.

If you’d rather watch — this video has the same info.

While we may not have an hour or more to sit down with a great thriller and a cup of something hot to drink, most of us do have a lot of downtime that can be better utilized. For instance: riding or driving to work and home again, washing dishes, cleaning, walking the dog, or working out at the gym… are all the perfect times to indulge in your favorite thriller books or mystery book series.

So, let’s take a look at some of the best thriller, mystery, and suspense audio programs out there.

Suspense & Thriller Radio Dramas

I loved, loved, loved listening to books on record and books on tape when I was a kid. My mother could literally “plug me in” to one of these with headphones and I’d be quiet for hours.

1. SUSPENSE Radio Drama

This is one of my very favorite suspense and thriller radio dramas: SUSPENSE Radio Drama.

When I was working in a corporate writing gig, my afternoons were usually spent editing. And while I can’t write and listen to a story at the same time, I could edit (mostly adding html to my articles). I remember more than once forgetting to breathe as I listened to an episode, or feeling the little hairs at the back of my neck stand straight up.

Professionally scripted and told by very talented actors, SUSPENSE Radio Drama has lots of thrills, chills, and all the sound effects to make you feel like you’re right there in the story. Be sure to check out an episode…and then be prepared to download 10 more immediately.

2. Blackwood

Three teens from Blackwood, CT, started investigating a local legend, called Bugman. They die but their story and their research lives on. Blackwood is a newer radio drama and sounds really good. If you like creepy tales about things that go bump in the night or unexplained phenomena, this might be perfect for you.

3. Suspense

Not to be confused with SUSPENSE Radio Drama, Suspense was a true old-time radio show which was popular in the 40s and 50s. Created by Alfred Hitchock in early 1940s, Suspense Radio is a classic for good reason. You can listen to 13 chilling episodes via Nitrate Diva.

4. Serial

If you love stories about real-life crimes, you’ll want to check out Serial. It is an award-winning radio show which tells a single true-crime story over the course of a single season. I haven’t listened to these as I’m not a fan of true crime but would encourage you to if that’s an interest of yours.

5. Darknet Diaries

With more discussion about AI, smartphones and smart homes, data breaches and other tech-heavy topics in today’s society, it can feel like one’s privacy online is elusive. Darknet Diaries, a fictional radio show about cyber crimes may raise your pulse…and your interest in going offline more frequently.

Thriller & Suspense Book Podcasts

Along with a love of fictional suspense and thriller radio shows, I also enjoy listening to podcasts that discuss great thriller books and suspense novels. Here are a few that are definitely worth listening to.

Meet the Thriller Author podcast image with microphone
Image credit: Meet the Thriller Author

1. Meet the Thriller Author

This show features a different thriller author with each episode. Have you ever read a book and thought, “Wow. I wish I could ask them how he came up with xx.” Or “Geesh, was the reason for that plot twist at the halfway point to direct you here?” In Meet the Thriller Author host Alan Peterson asks all the questions you wish you could. It features a variety of thriller, mystery, and suspense authors. (I was even a guest on the podcast!)

2. The FrankenPod

In this fun (and often funny) podcast focuses on Gothic fiction. The FrankenPod offers reviews of both old and modern Gothic fiction. It’s a must-listen for readers who love the thrills and chills that Gothic literary works offer.

3. Castle of Horror

Like your books a little more edgy and thrilling? If you’re a fan of horror, supernatural suspense, and spine-tingling tales, you’ll enjoy Castle of Horrors. Here, horror authors are interviewed. It’s interesting “see” behind the scenes and learn more about how these writers get their inspiration and how they get their dark and creepy tales out on the page.

What would you add?

It feels like I’m just scratching the surface here. What are your favorite podcasts to listen to? Which thriller/suspense/mystery episodes would you recommend? Please leave a comment and share it.

J.P. Choquette writes suspense books set in small towns and remote forests that “turn pages, not stomachs”. Learn more by visiting her website, or find her on Instagram @jpchoquette_author



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