For me, the thriller is the action, while the mystery is the puzzle, and suspense is the end-result of thriller and mystery.
Human lives are full of drama. Every day, we see in the newspapers, magazines, social media networks, internet, and other newsfeed platforms about real-life stories unfolding. Some are happy, others sad, while many had a miserable beginning but favorable ending. Many of us witnessed the life on TV about the horror of the Vietnam War. We read the story of John Walker and his family of spies betraying fellow Americans, the tension between China and Southeast Asian countries in the South China Sea, and also about the Corona Virus and the havoc it created. All these produced wealth of plays shaped into thrillers, suspense, and mystery, either for novels or movies.
“Well! Well. Going somewhere, you two?” Mr. Ma instructed his bodyguard to tie Raymond and Devin to chairs, and the tough gangster roughly gripped their faces.
“I found out what you did with my money. If that was the business deal, Ray, I could have done it myself.”
Raymond struggled. “This is Malaysia, Mr. Ma! You cannot kill a Malaysian citizen.”
Mr. Ma laughed as he waved a tooth extractor in his hand. “Who is talking about killing you. I had an ambition to be a dentist.”
Devin peed in his pants upon seeing the pliers in Mr. Ma’s hand.
“This is going to be fun! Or would you like the sharpened bicycle spoke dipped in ten- days- old human excrement? I can poke on your leg, and you can watch them fall off!”
Page 282 – THE EURASIANS
Definition of Thriller Novel
Wikipedia defines thrillers as a genre of fiction, which is tough, resourceful. Still, most ordinary heroes are pitted against villains determined to destroy them, their country, and the stability of the free world. Thrillers are often associated with spy, war, adventure, and detective fiction.
In the novel, The Doomsday Conspiracy by Sidney Sheldon, the main character, Robert Bellamy, an ONI agent, and former naval officer, has bumped into a deadly and mysterious force that tried to stop him from finding the truth about UFO encounter. To me, Sydney Sheldon is one of the most celebrated masters of the thriller genre.
Definition of Mystery Novel
Stacy Woodson, in her blog post, what is the difference between thriller, mystery, and suspend, put it in such a superb explanation, “if I want a fast-paced edge-of-the-seat-experience, I look for a thriller. If I am in a puzzle-solving mood, it’s all to a mystery section. And I expect them to have an element of suspense.”
One of the most celebrated mystery novels is Dan Brown’s novel, The Da Vinci Code. In Dan’s story, it was all about finding the keystone, a cryptic, a circular rotating dial. Inside the enigmatic is a riddle that will lead to answers. The main character, Robert Langdon, had to find the keystone for Robert Langdon to arrive at the quest finally.
Definition of Suspense
Then what is suspense? The thrills of the story, trying to solve the mystery, will create suspense. Suspense is the element of both fiction and some non-fiction that made the readers uncertain about the outcome.
What about romance novels?
Romance stories are a type of style that places its primary focus on the relationship and romantic love between two people; in the case of my novel, four people. According to the Romance Writers of America, the main plot of a mass-market romance novel must revolve around two people as they develop romantic love for each other and work to build a relationship.
Evergreen Thriller and Suspense Novel
According to Reedsy Discovery, there were 50 best suspense books of all time. I will highlight here it’s top 10.
- And Then They Were None by Agatha Christie
- A Simple Favor by Darcey Bell
- Baby Teeth by Zoje Stage
- Before I Go To Sleep by SJ Watson
- Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
- Bird Box by Jose Malerman
- The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena
- The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
- Descent by Tim Johnston
- The Dinner by Herman Koch
As for my book, The Eurasians, BlueInk Review put it this way, “this sprawling story shifts often from action to action scene.” In other words, it’s a thriller novel. Since it also has the elements of the romance genre, it could be considered a romance-thriller. Don’t forget there are also legal-thriller books written by authors like John Grisham and military-spy-thriller penned by writers like Tom Clancy. I would appreciate it if you could leave your comments and suggestions below or subscribe to this blog.