10 Crime-Thrill Books Like American Psycho

Psycho-Thriller Books Lists

If you read American Psycho, you know that he is a psychopathic serial killer who kills everyone, from homeless people to children, like no one is safe from him. His mind starts to deteriorate, and his crimes go ballistic. The novel serves as a satirical critique of 1980s consumer culture, superficiality, and materialism. It’s one of the best action and psycho-thriller books throughout history.

Books like American Psycho explore mental health, morality, and the darker aspects of human nature, which can intrigue readers interested in psychological fiction. I have an extensive list for you if you want to read them.

10 Books Like American Psycho (Thriller & Crime)

As a fan of American Psycho, you want to read more books like that. You can not forget the win-win situations and thrilling moments of the book. So to fill up your blank moment and taste like that book, I will show ten books similar to American Psycho. These books will give you the same journey and the same feelings. So let’s begin the thrilling!

1. Cosmopolis

Cosmopolis was published in 2003 and is 209 pages. It is focused on a day in the life of Eric Packer. He wants to get across town Manhattan to get a haircut in his limo, as you do. But a presidential visit is happening today, and there’s a vast gridlock. So, it focuses on everything that happens while he’s in it. Eric Packer is a 28-year-old billionaire who made his fortune on Wall Street by analyzing the trends in the stock markets. He’s obsessed with the financial markets, which is how he made his fortune.

Is this an attack on capitalism and the financial markets, and what got us into a post 9-11 mess? There are a lot of rats that have taken over the city. The main character is a Wall Street tycoon talking about rats taking over the city. It’s a thinly veiled metaphor right there. It is a complete view of a nightmare version of society. It was very reminiscent of American Psycho. There’s an element of a bomb for vanity, which American Psycho has also been related to.


Author: Don Delillo
Average Rating: 3.5/5
Category: Literary Fiction, Suspense
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Hardcover | Kindle | Audio CD

2. Less Than Zero

Less Than Zero was published in 1985. It’s about this culture of impatience, apathy, indecision, and immediate gratification. Bret Easton Ellis is an American author from Los Angeles whose novels possess a very iconic flavor of witty black satire. Bret matured into a respectably seasoned age of twenty-one when the book was published. He was subsequently thrown into the maelstrom of New York City in the mid to late 80s, unsurprisingly informing his most famous novel, American Psycho, so in this debut, which is a rapid read.

Clay is a very young and wealthy protagonist who comes home for a Christmas break from college to see his family and friends in Los Angeles. The understated writing style is one of the first striking things you’ll notice about less than zero. We’re in play in the first-person view and describe these acts of violence, cruelty, depravity, of moral abandonment in a manner that is so detached and distanced. Despite being immersed in this nightmarish ocean of mundane horror, Clay is nevertheless deeply affected by what he witnesses. He is susceptible to the actions taking place. He’s still got this sense of ethics.

Clay is still trying to find things of substance, value, and real love in a culture that has all but lost it, trying to find out what is important to him. Nobody is impressed with themselves or with anybody else. This is the culture of people who have imploded, and what remains of each person is a robotic husk, snorting coke and spending money. It is the world that Clay walks back into with his ex-girlfriend, friends who have turned into drug-addicted hustlers and prostitutes.

It sounds like I’m exaggerating, but it’s not far from the truth. What happened then, and what’s happening right now? It is the practical element of less than zero. The novel’s real power comes from the character shutting down emotionally as this defense, or maybe like a survival mechanism. They’re not fully mentally or physically developed, but they’ve seen it all and far more than anybody should ever hope to see. The book mirrors the horror and the vapidity of a culture you very well may be immersed in.

Less Than Zero

Author: Bret Easton Ellis
Average Rating: 4.2/5
Category: Self-Help & Psychology Humor
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Hardcover | Kindle | Mass Market Paperback

3. Trainspotting

Trainspotting is about a group of drug addicts living in Scotland. It’s all about the vicious circle of drugs at the beginning. Mark is the book’s main character, and it’s told from Mark’s perspective. The main thing is drugs, so everything centers around that. You don’t get to know them as people. It talks about the people’s families and their feelings about their drug addictions. You feel like it was a short story collection instead of an actual novel.

Some of the chapters in this book are shocking, and some people would find it uncomfortable, especially when dealing with children. But you feel interested to know why people have taken drugs for years. It’s like what caused them to get to this point. At the same time, the author shows how it affects people around you and how you can harm people. This book is very knowledgeable and provides accurate data and information similar to American Psycho. So I recommend you get this.


Author: Irvine Welsh
Average Rating: 4.6/5
Category: Crime & Thriller, Dark Humor
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Hardcover | Kindle | Audio Cassette

4. Bright Lights, Big City

The author emphasizes a lot with the main character, a definite person with a personality and features he loves or hates. Even the second person writes it. So theoretically speaking, the main character is you. Bright Lights Big City is, in many ways, a critique of the materialistic, success-oriented culture of the 80s, especially in New York City.

I like to think of it as the bright side of American Psycho by Bret Easton. The main character is the narrator, and he’s 24 years old. He is addicted to cocaine, and the party lifestyle does a lot of drugs. Not only cocaine but also does other drugs too. He works at the Department of Factual Verification, a very prestigious magazine.

His boss, Clara, doesn’t like him because he always comes to work late. Eventually, he gets fired because he messes up the French elections piece. He was preoccupied with a story in a New York Post about the coma baby. This coma baby is symbolic, though it’s symbolic for the character. In this coma, the baby represents him, symbolic of him.

The narrator is friends with Tad Allagash, and Tad is a hedonist like the narrator. They do a lot of drugs, go to parties, and meet primarily many uninteresting women. The day trader is married to Amanda, and Amanda is a model they met in Kansas. She had a messed-up life, and the narrator wanted to take her out of that. Amanda’s dream was to live in Central Park, and the narrator fulfilled that dream and took her to New York. Soon after Amanda became a model, she went to Paris and decided not to return. So the narrator spent most of his time thinking about her throughout the book.

At the book’s end, you think the narrator will start over and do things differently. He says You will have to go slowly. You will have to learn everything all over again, which is true. He had to start over but get away from Tad and his friends if he wanted to kick the addiction. It is a unique book, and I highly recommend reading it.

Bright Lights, Big City

Author: Jay McInerney
Average Rating: 4.5/5
Category: Lawyers & Criminals Humor
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Hardcover | Kindle

5. The Silent Patient

The Silent Patient is a thriller mystery character that perfectly strikes a dark, spooky vibe that many readers want. It is justifiably known for its twists. The book is told from two perspectives. So you have Theo, a psychologist, and Alicia, the silent patient. She has gone silent since being charged with the murder of her husband.

Theo takes a job so he can work with Alicia. He wants to get down to the bottom of her case. He wants to figure out what’s going on in there. Why is she silent? Did she murder her husband? If not, then why is she not defending herself? If she did, why go silent?

One thing that pulled me out of the like suspension of disbelief is how many privacy violations there are. The story moves along quickly, and I love that in mysteries and thrillers, so I give a big thumbs up. The second half of the book is more formulaic or detective. Also, it is pretty vibing with many twists. As an “American Psycho” book reader, you will like this book.

The Silent Patient

Author: Alex Michaelides
Average Rating: 4.5/5
Category: Mystery, Psychological Thrillers & Suspense (Editor’s Choice)
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Hardcover | Kindle | Audio CD

6. The Guest List

Imagine yourself on a super creepy Irish island going to a fancy, posh wedding. That’s where you find yourself when you are reading the guest list. We learn very early on that something terrible has happened at this wedding. Essentially, this is a classic whodunit that takes place at a wedding.

The Guest List unfolds from there. It does cover some darker and more serious subject matter. But for the most part, it’s written in a light style. It felt almost satirical, over-the-top, and so dramatic that it felt slightly over the top. Many people like that about it: like American Psycho, there were a lot of fun and little cliffhangers.

The story begins with a delicious wedding. The two people getting married are this handsome guy. He’s a reality TV star. Everybody likes him, and they’re super bright, rich girls. It looks like they have everything in life. Also, they chose to have their wedding on this specific island at the Foley. The Foley is an old castle; the wedding planner and her husband own it in the book.

The timeline is regressive because it opens on the wedding night. What do we know about the wedding night because the weather started getting bad and someone turned dead? So then we go back in time to the beginning of the wedding, and each chapter is a POV from one of the characters. We have the bride, the wedding planner, the plus one, the bridesmaid, and the best man. You could tell that each of the characters has something shady about them.

This book is more character-based than plot-based, and there is more development around them than around the whole mystery of the book. What I liked about this book is that it was super atmospheric.

The Guest List

Author: Lucy Foley
Average Rating: 4.2/5
Category: Mystery, Crime Thrillers, Psychological Thrillers & Suspense (Editor’s Pick)
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Hardcover | Kindle

7. The Girl on the Train

The Girl on the Train is told from the dual perspectives of three women living outside London. But it’s mainly told from the point of view of Rachel. She is in her early 30s, and one of the first things we learn about her is that she is a raging alcoholic. She takes the train to London every day. She’s grieving heavily over her divorce.

Her husband has ended it with her, and he’s now with another woman because she takes the same train at the same time every day. She sees the same people in their homes as she passes them. That seemingly perfect couple chose out on their balcony, having coffee together in the morning, and she nicknamed them Jess and Jason.

After that, horrible events begin to occur, and she becomes a horrendous alcoholic version of Nancy Drew and solves what happened. The book also tells the point of view of the woman who lives on the balcony. It’s also said a tiny bit from the point of view of Anna. That is Rachel’s ex-husband, Tom’s new wife. I read a lot of psychological thrillers, and this book was so fascinating.

The writing felt pretty similar to Into the Darkest Corner and American Psycho. This is a book where the plot is more important than writing. At the beginning of the book, there’s a little poem about someone being buried in the ground. When you find out the significance of that, that was well done.

The Girl on the Train

Author: Paula Hawkins
Average Rating: 4.1/5
Category: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense (Best Seller)
Available: Audiobook | Paperback | Hardcover | Kindle

8. Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk (1996)

Fight Club tells the story of an insomniac office worker who forms an underground fight club with a charismatic soap salesman named Tyler Durden. The novel critiques consumer culture, societal expectations, and the search for identity in a postmodern world. Like “American Psycho,” “Fight Club” features an unreliable narrator and explores masculinity, violence, and mental health. Palahniuk’s writing style is minimalist and fast-paced, making for a gripping read.

9. A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess (1962)

A Clockwork Orange is a dystopian novel that centers around Alex, a violent and hedonistic teenager. He leads a gang of “droogs” on a crime spree. The book represents free will, morality, and the potential for redemption. The graphic violence and exploration of a disturbed protagonist’s psyche draw comparisons to “American Psycho.”

10. Glamorama by Bret Easton Ellis

Glamorama is another novel by Ellis that revolves around Victor Ward, a shallow, fame-obsessed model and club promoter in the 1990s. The novel satirizes celebrity culture and the fashion industry while incorporating conspiracy and thriller genres. This features graphic violence, a critique of superficiality, and an unreliable narrator whose grasp on reality becomes increasingly tenuous.

“American Psycho” was controversial for graphic content, censorship, misogyny, and ambiguity. Many readers and critics found these scenes to be deeply disturbing and unnecessary. While the novel can be read as a satirical critique of 1980s consumer culture and superficiality, some readers and critics believe that the graphic violence and overall tone of the book glorify the protagonist’s actions.

Due to the book’s controversial nature, its initial publisher dropped the novel shortly before publication, citing its graphic content. Vintage Books eventually published the novel but faced bans and restrictions in various countries. So some of the books that I discussed also have these issues.

Overall, Like American Psycho, they might not be an easy read due to graphic content, narrative style, and the intellectual engagement it demands from readers. The book’s difficulty can be subjective, depending on the reader’s preferences and tolerance for its content.

Read More Similar:

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Psycho-Suspense Books Like The Last Mrs. Parrish

Psychological Thriller Romance Novels

Psychological Books Like Girl In Pieces

Writing Tips: How To Write A Psychopath Character

Pauline Jackson

I like to talk about popular books. My book review inspires you to read and save time. Also, I summarize the book and give you the best lessons or ideas that can change your life. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

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