New York Times Bestselling author

In The Blood

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Liar, Liar, pants on fire ...

Lana Granger lives a life of lies. She has told so many lies about where she comes from and who she is that the truth is like a cloudy nightmare she can’t quite recall. About to graduate from college and with her trust fund almost tapped out, she takes a job babysitting a troubled boy named Luke. Expelled from schools all over the country, the manipulative young Luke is accustomed to controlling the people in his life. But, in Lana, he may have met his match. Or has Lana met hers?

When Lana’s closest friend, Beck, mysteriously disappears, Lana resumes her lying ways—to friends, to the police, to herself. The police have a lot of questions for Lana when the story about her where­abouts the night Beck disappeared doesn’t jibe with eyewitness accounts. Lana will do anything to hide the truth, but it might not be enough to keep her ominous secrets buried: someone else knows about Lana’s lies. And he’s dying to tell.

Start Reading

There are twelve slats of wood under my bed. I know this because I count them over and over. Onetwothreefourfivesixseveneightnineteneleventwelve. I whisper the numbers to myself and the sound of it comforts me as I'm sure a prayer would comfort someone who believes in God. It's amazing how loud a whisper can be. Surrounded down there by the white glow of my bed skirt, the sound of my own voice in my ears, I can almost block out the screaming, the horrible keening. And then there's the silence, which is so much worse...

Honors and Awards

  • Best Book of the Year Nominee in Goodreads Choice Awards
  • Sun-Sentinel Best Mystery Novel of the Year
  • Suspense Magazine Best Book of the Year
  • Silver Falchion Award Winner for Best Novel
  • Amazon Best Book of the Month
  • CBC Morning Show Top Book Pick
  • Indie Next Pick
  • "The Best Psychological Thriller Books of All Time" selection by Book Scrolling.
  • "15 Thrillers with Unreliable Narrators" recommendation by BookBub.
  • "If you liked Gone Girl, You'll Love These Suspense Thrillers" selection by Refinery29

Praise for In the Blood

"Brisk, crafty and fascinating psychological thriller… IN THE BLOOD is a complex mosaic as well, one that's tricky, arresting and meaningful."
Washington Post

"Creepy characters, gripping plot, chilling description... will keep you wondering what will happen next. This is simply a great, scary psychological thriller."
StarTribune

"A page-pounding psychological maze that will have you scratching your head until the very end."
Florida Times-Union

"Nothing is what it seems as Unger pulls off some beautiful surprises in this intriguing thriller. Once the final page of In the Blood is turned, readers will flip through the novel to see if they can uncover how Unger masterfully told the tale."
Associated Press

"The author has penned a fantastic novel full of suspense and intrigue. Massively recommended."
—Sun (UK)

"Exciting and spellbinding right to the final sentence."
CBC Edmonton Top Pick for 2017

"Lisa Unger has steadily established herself as a rising star of the American thriller scene and In The Blood is probably her best novel to date... This is a clever and tricky thriller that reveals its many surprises with clockwork precision. The story moves at a good pace and the suspense steadily but quickly mounts… Highly recommended."
Sydney Morning Herald 

"The brisk plot churns as Unger skillfully explores the mental state of each character, and what brought them to their current situations."
Sun Sentinel

"A riveting chess match of twists will keep you guessing—and keep you up at night."
—Family Circle

“Unger…has always had a deft touch with tales of deep secrets and hidden identities, but In The Blood may be her best one yet…[she] keeps the shocks and twists coming at a breakneck pace. No one in the novel is who he or she seems.”
Tampa Bay Times

“Always scary... Unger neatly distorts our perceptions, so there's no telling what is what. Well done."
New York Daily News

“[A] gripping novel of psychological suspense... [with a] tense, surprise-laden plot.”
Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Unger pulls off a bravura feat... Readers will… savor the pleasure of being guided by Unger’s sure hand along a deliciously twisted narrative path. Another scary winner from an accomplished pro.”
Kirkus Reviews

“Unger's latest offering is full of engaging twists and turns. She tells the story from Lana's point of view but skillfully keeps the reader guessing as to what dark secrets the character is hiding. Fans of mystery and psychological suspense, along with Unger's fans, will be delighted with this imaginative story.”
—Library Journal

“This fast-moving book is a rollercoaster thrill ride... Unger’s skill with words, combined with a pace that never lets up, is guaranteed to keep the pages turning long past the midnight hour.”
BookPage

“Lisa Unger is the high priestess of the psychological thriller.”
Florida Weekly

“Unger is a compelling storyteller whose tales rest on human frailty and not on timetables or blood-spatter patterns. She makes it impossible to stop reading..."
Charlotte Observer

“There are so many twists and turns in this book, readers' heads will spin. Just when you think you know everything - you don't. I was second-guessing every character in the book by the end and enjoyed every bit of it."
Parkersburg News and Sentinel

“Unger is a compelling storyteller whose tales rest on human frailty and not on timetables or blood-spatter patterns. She makes it impossible to stop reading..."
News and Observer

In The Blood is an absolute corker of a thriller that cements Lisa Unger's status as one of the brightest stars in the game.”
—Dennis Lehane

“Reading In the Blood is like grabbing a live wire... A shocking, unputdownable thriller."
—Karen Slaughter

In The Blood is a riveting new thriller from Lisa Unger. Dark and haunting, with a deadly twist that you won't see coming 'til you're hit between the eyes, this book is a winner.”
—Linda Fairstein

In The Blood is a psychological thriller that played me--in the best sense--from beginning to surprising end. I guarantee Lisa Unger will pull the rug out from under you more than once, so hold tight.”
—Andrew Pyper

In the Blood will unveil Lana’s secrets --- as well as those of the many characters in her life --- with the precision that only an expert psychological novelist like Lisa Unger can display. This is a welcome start to 2014 and one that has already set the bar for thrillers to come.“
BookReporter.com

"Most authors who write series concentrate on one or two recurring characters to drive the story… has taken a different route with three of her last novels. Instead of focusing on a person, Unger uses the fictional town The Hollows as the driving force while concentrating on different residents each time out."
Mystery Scene

"One of the biggest reading experiences of the year. Actually, one of the biggest reading experiences I have ever had… I am seriously thinking of reading it again right away and I am blown away with Lisa Unger's writing skills. This is my first encounter with, as what I am going to call her from now on, The Great Unger, but its definitely not the last one. Actually, I wish I could read all her books all at once. So please, if you like dark books and are a Gillian Flynn fan, you cannot miss this one. One of my absolute favorite books ever. "
The Literary Magazine

"A booksellers dream book to place into the hands of readers."
—Rob Dougherty at CLINTON BOOK SHOP

"In The Blood is Lisa Unger's most thrilling psychological thriller yet...A gripping parallel story of diary entries brings this novel to a head in an explosive jaw-dropping ending. A fast paced story best read with a several nightlights on."
—Bina Valenzano at BOOKMARK SHOPPE

"I like Unger's mysteries: they are always full of twists and, although I'm an avid reader of thrillers and can usually guess the endings, I rarely can with hers. "In the Blood" was as unpredictable as her other books and it also featured a creepy bad seed kid. I love evil kids in books, I don't know why (is that worrisome?). I raced through this one until the very end!"
—Lauren Peugh at CHANGING HANDS

"In the Blood is the ultimate psychological thriller. It is deep, dark, stunning, shocking and every other adjective you can imagine. It is the story of Lana Granger a girl trying very hard to hide from her extremely troubled childhood as she finishes up her college course in abnormal psychology. It is also the story of the other people in her life. Her roommate Beck, who goes missing under strange circumstances, her mentor and professor Langdon Hewes, and Luke, the disturbed child who Lana hopes to help."
—Nancy McFarlane at FICTION ADDICTION

“Lisa Unger's taut prose, flawed characters, and unreliable narrator kept me riveted from the first page to the last. Lana has deep dark secrets that she'd like to keep hidden, but it seems somebody wants to expose her. Thrills, chills, and too many suspects to count, this book has it all!”
—Susan Taylor at BOOK HOUSE

"This masterfully told tale, littered with suspects, will keep you biting your nails until the very last minute. But be forewarned: the blood in the title is not a metaphor."
—Kathy Ashton at KING'S ENGLISH

Actress Gretchen Mol on "In the Blood"

Gretchen Mol talks about how much she enjoyed reading IN THE BLOOD. Go behind-the scenes of the audiobook edition for IN THE BLOOD in this video interview with Gretchen. She also reads an excerpt from the book!

Gretchen Mol is best known for her roles in the films Rounders, Celebrity, 3:10 to Yuma, The Thirteenth Floor, and The Notorious Bettie Page, where she played the title character. She also starred as Gillian Darmody on HBO's Boardwalk Empire

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