authors The Best Suspense Authors  

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List Rules Authors who write suspense novels. Vote up the best suspense authors.

There’s nothing that keeps readers on their toes, feeling the adrenaline rush and excitement of a story quite like a great suspense novel can. The suspense genre is one of the most popular genres in the world of novels, and  some of the world’s most beloved authors of all time have contributed to the genre. Who are the best suspense authors?
 
The authors on this list have produced some of the most well-known books in the world of literature, and earned fame as the most famous authors of all time. In fact, Hollywood took note of many of these authors, adapting their writing to the big screen, or bringing them on as screenwriters to lend their talent for suspense. These authors have been ranked by voters as the best suspense authors of all time.
 
This list features the best suspense authors in history including, Harlan Coben, Thomas Harris, Stieg Larsson, James Patterson, Stephen King, Robert Ludlum, Truman Capote, Ted Dekker, Dan Brown, Agatha Christie, and Sire Arthur Conan Doyle. Vote up the absolute best suspense authors below or add one who you think writes the best suspense novels but isn't already on the list.
list ordered by

1
48 11
Arthur Conan Doyle is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Arthur Conan Doyle The Hound of the Baskervilles, The Lost World, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

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2
68 25
Stephen King is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Stephen King The Shining, The Stand, Carrie

3
34 9
Bram Stoker is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Bram Stoker Dracula

4
31 9
Patricia Highsmith is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Patricia Highsmith The American Friend, Strangers On a Train

5
33 11
Agatha Christie is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Agatha Christie The Mirror Crack'd, A Caribbean Mystery, A Witness For the Prosecution

6
24 4
G. K. Chesterton is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Mollevangsvagen added G. K. Chesterton The Man Who Was Thursday, The Napoleon of Notting Hill, The Everlasting Man

7
34 14
Michael Crichton is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Michael Crichton Twister, Disclosure, The Andromeda Strain

8
35 15
Dean Koontz is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Dean Koontz Odd Thomas, Sole Survivor, Fear Nothing

9
35 17
John Grisham is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
John Grisham The Firm, The Chamber, Mickey

10
25 9
Alexandre Dumas is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Alexandre Dumas The Count of Monte Cristo, The Three Musketeers

11
19 4
John Buchan, 1st Baron Tweedsm... is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Mollevangsvagen added John Buchan, 1st Baron Tweedsmuir The Thirty-Nine Steps, Mr Standfast, Greenmantle

12
28 12
Robert Ludlum is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Robert Ludlum The Bourne Deception, The Cassandra Compact, The Bourne Identity

13
19 5
Thea von Harbou is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Mollevangsvagen added Thea von Harbou Metropolis, M, The Testament of Dr. Mabuse

14
19 5
Marie Adelaide Belloc Lowndes is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Mollevangsvagen added Marie Adelaide Belloc Lowndes The Lodger, From Out the Vasty Deep, The Uttermost Farthing

15
20 6
Georges Simenon is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Mollevangsvagen added Georges Simenon The Clockmaker, Les Fiançailles de M. Hire, Maigret Hesitates

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16
20 6
John le Carré is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
John le Carré The Tailor of Panama, The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

17
18 5
James Hadley Chase is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Mollevangsvagen added James Hadley Chase Palmetto, The soft centre, Come Easy Go Easy

18
29 15
Dan Brown is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Dan Brown The Da Vinci Code, Inferno, Deception Point

19
23 10
Harlan Coben is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Harlan Coben Play Dead, Caught, Deal Breaker

20
18 6
José Giovanni is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Mollevangsvagen added José Giovanni Second Breath, The Hole, Le deuxième souffle

21
23 11
Dennis Lehane is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Dennis Lehane Gone Baby Gone, Mystic River, Shutter Island

22
24 12
Thomas Harris is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Thomas Harris Hannibal Rising, Black Sunday, Red Dragon

23
24 12
Lee Child is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Lee Child Without Fail, Worth Dying For, Never Go Back

24
16 5
Boileau-Narcejac is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Mollevangsvagen added Boileau-Narcejac Les Diaboliques , Eyes Without a Face , L'invisible agresseur

25
17 7
Daphne du Maurier is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Daphne du Maurier Rebecca, Jamaica Inn, The Flight of the Falcon

26
14 5
Frederick Forsyth is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Frederick Forsyth The Fourth Protocol, Great Flying Stories, Privilege and Other Stories

27
17 8
Tom Clancy is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Tom Clancy The Bonfire of the Vanities, The Right Stuff, The Hunt For Red October

28
26 18
James Patterson is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
James Patterson The 6th Target, Now You See Her, 3rd Degree

29
12 5
Jeffery Deaver is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Jeffery Deaver The Lesson of Her Death, Praying for Sleep, The Bodies Left Behind

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30
14 7
Truman Capote is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Truman Capote A Christmas Memory, The Innocents, In Cold Blood

31
12 6
Cormac McCarthy is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Cormac McCarthy All the Pretty Horses, No Country for Old Men, The Road

32
12 7
Ken Follett is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Ken Follett Fall of Giants, The Key to Rebecca, Lie Down with Lions

33
10 5
Peter Benchley is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Peter Benchley The Deep, The Island, The Great Houdini

34
9 5
Wilkie Collins is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Wilkie Collins The Legacy of Cain, Basil & Little Novels, The Woman in White

35
11 8
Dashiell Hammett is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Dashiell Hammett Watch on the Rhine, No Good Deed, After the Thin Man

36
11 8
Vince Flynn is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Vince Flynn Pursuit of Honor, Consent to Kill, Kill Shot

37
10 8
William Goldman is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
William Goldman Harper, Misery, The Ghost and the Darkness

38
7 5
Scott Turow is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Scott Turow Presumed Innocent, Guilty As Charged, Ordinary Heroes

39
5 3
Steve E. Clark is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Christina David added Steve E. Clark

40
7 7
James Rollins is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
James Rollins Witch House, Subterranean, Excavation

41
5 5
John Buchanan is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
John Buchanan Fixing America, The Road to Guilford Courthouse

42
22 24
Stieg Larsson is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Stieg Larsson The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets' Nest, The Girl Who Played With Fire

43
6 8
Martin Cruz Smith is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Martin Cruz Smith Nightwing, Stalin's Ghost: An Arkady Renko Novel, Rose

44
4 6
Richard Condon is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Richard Condon The Happy Thieves, Prizzi's Honor, An Infinity of Mirrors

45
7 10
Ted Dekker is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Ted Dekker Sinner, Infidel, White

46
6 9
Brad Thor is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Brad Thor The Lions of Lucerne, Takedown, Foreign Influence

47
4 7
Caleb Carr is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Caleb Carr The Alienist, The Angel of Darkness, Killing Time

48
12 17
Ira Levin is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
Ira Levin Rosemary's Baby, A Kiss Before Dying, The Stepford Wives

49
3 7
Billie Sue Mosiman is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
BillieMosiman added Billie Sue Mosiman Novelist - The Grey Matter, Widow,Wireman,Moon Lake,Sinister,Bad Trip South

50
2 7
John Macdonald is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Suspense Authors
John Macdonald Great Battles of the Civil War, When Cancer Strikes, But We Are Different