Social Media Thrillers

Books in the Series

The Good Sister

The Good Sister
Book One

The Black Widow

The Black Widow
Book Three

Cold Hearted (A Novella)

Cold Hearted
A Novella

About the Series

You never know who might be lurking behind a screenname in this trio of standalone cyber predator novels about the dark side of social media sites, blogging, and online dating.

The Good Sister

The Good Sister

BOOK ONE

In New York Times bestselling author Wendy Corsi Staub’s electrifying new thriller, a mother races to save her daughter before her darkest nightmare comes true.

Sacred Sisters Catholic girls’ school has hardly changed since Jen Archer was a student. Jen hoped her older daughter would thrive here. Instead, shy, studious Carley becomes the target of vicious bullies. But the real danger at Sacred Sisters goes much deeper.

The only person Carley can talk to is “Angel,” a kindred spirit she met online. Carley tells Angel everything—about her younger sister, about school, about the sudden death of her former best friend. Angel is her lifeline. And Angel is closer than she knows.

When another schoolgirl is found dead, Jen’s unease grows. There are too many coincidences, too many links to her past. Every instinct tells her that Carley is the next target. For someone is intent on punishing the guilty, teaching the ultimate lesson in how to fear…and how to die.

“A novel that delves into the tragic past and state of mind of a serial killer. This is not a “whodunit.” Here, suspense is sustained by the questions: why did the killer do it, and who will be next? The story addresses three issues: child abuse (both pedophilia and the punitive cruelty born of rigid religious fundamentalism); the effects of high school bullying; and the negative impact of cybertechnology on interpersonal relationships. Fans of Criminal Minds will especially love this book.”
—Kirkus

The Good Sister is without a doubt one of the most chilling suspense filled books I have ever read. It is also one of the saddest books showing how dangerous and destructive bullying now and through the ages truly is. Wendy Corsi Staub has outdone herself with this excellent twisted tale, and her characters are all believable, intelligent and might remind you of people you have known in your past. The Good Sister is dark, sinister, and captivating from page one.”
—Reader to Reader

“The way that the antagonist of this thriller manipulates victims via the Internet is downright chilling. Using multiple points of view, the novel reveals a twisted mind intent on making a group of adults pay for their teenaged ‘sins.’ The suspense keeps you turning pages.”
—RT Book Reviews

“THE GOOD SISTER is another example of just how good a writer Wendy Corsi Staub is. A creepy set up and a continuing mystery with little clues dropped along the way make for a definite page turner. Be warned, too, that just when you think you’ve got things figured out; you don’t! There’s a serious twist at the end of THE GOOD SISTER that you would never have seen coming no matter how adept you are at guessing who is guilty of what in plotlines. I guarantee that it is a definite head shaking, jaw dropping moment when you finally reach the explanation of what has been happening and the reasons behind it.”
—Fresh Fiction

“Taut, tense and incredibly suspenseful. This chillingly creepy psychological thriller is the perfect page-turner—Staub’s powerful and timely story-telling is captivating!”
Hank Phillippi Ryan Agatha, Anthony, Macavity, and Mary Higgins Clark award-winning author

“Intense! Wendy Corsi Staub once again delivers a masterful psychological mystery that is both chilling and thrilling. You will not be able to put The Good Sister down until the very last page.”
Allison Brennan, New York Times bestselling author

“This dark tale of twisted family secrets reels you in and doesn’t let go. Fans of Gillian Flynn will love this one. Staub ratchets up the tension so high that your heart will be racing as you turn the pages. The Good Sister shows again why Staub is one of the best suspense writers today.”
Jamie Freveletti, internationally bestselling author of DEAD ASLEEP

“I haven’t been this frightened for the citizens of Buffalo, New York since I was born there! Wendy Corsi Staub weaves a tale of good sisters and fallen angels as terrifyingly chilling as the winter winds off Lake Erie!”
Chris Grabenstein, multiple award-winning mystery author

“A chilling, captivating and all-too-timely tale of suburban suspense, THE GOOD SISTER is guaranteed to keep you up at night — and keep a closer eye on your kids, too! I couldn’t put it down.”
Alison Gaylin, USA Today bestselling author

“The Good Sister is without a doubt one of the most chilling suspense filled books I have ever read. It is also one of the saddest books showing how dangerous and destructive bullying now and through the ages truly is. Wendy Corsi Staub has outdone herself with this excellent twisted tale, and her characters are all believable, intelligent and might remind you of people you have known in your past. The Good Sister is dark, sinister, and captivating from page one.”
Betty Cox for Reader to Reader

“Past and present events are interspersed throughout a narrative that unfolds briskly, and a rising body count and alarming coincidences serve to amplify the tension. In addition to ratcheting up a mother’s paranoia—a trademark element in the author’s books—Staub delves into the psychology of her skillfully veiled antagonist, creating both a sense of believability and understanding as to why the sins of the past have resurfaced to wreak havoc with the present. Longtime readers will be especially pleased with this offering, as it tows the line of “the same but different” expertly.
The Good Sister represents Staub at her absolute, bone-chilling best, as she’s crafted a story that’s as timely as it is terrifying. Not only does she understand a mother’s very worst fears and convey them with conviction, but she keenly grasps both the allure and the perils of social networking—the unifying theme of this book and the two that will follow it. Readers will be helpless to resist turning pages at a relentless pace only to then close the book with a feeling of satisfaction that is tempered by the realization that we are all at risk. And, as heart-rending a thought as that may be, it’s also the truth …”
John Valeri for Hartford Books Examiner

“A killer who calls himself “Angel” torments his teenage targets through the clever use of social media in this disturbing thriller from bestseller Staub…This is Angel’s story, and it leads to a surprising and terrifying conclusion as Jen sees the connection with a tragedy from her own teenage years. You will want to monitor your children’s Internet “friends” after reading this one–and you just may start looking back over your own shoulder.”
—Publisher’s Weekly

“Wendy Corsi Staub’s “The Good Sister” is a startling and terrifying novel. She captures the reader in a world of cyber predators, and holds them hostage. “The Good Sister” shows just how vulnerable the internet has made the world. A truly eye opening experience.”
—Suspense Magazine

“You don’t want to start reading THE GOOD SISTER just before going to bed, and not because you will stay up all night reading it. Rather, it’s the imagery that opens the book — a scene involving a rocking chair — that will sink itself so deeply into your cranial folds that you’ll wish for surgery to remove it. From there, Staub launches into a house-under-siege scenario that will have you checking every creak, crunch and thump in the night that you hear (or think you hear). And at that point, THE GOOD SISTER has only barely begun. It’s not just the frights and the thrills that make Staub’s suspense novels so addicting. It’s the characterization. Anyone who has picked up one of her books knows at least someone among the characters who populate her books, and THE GOOD SISTER is no exception to that rule….Surprises abound in THE GOOD SISTER. Staub will have your jaw dropping throughout the book, particularly near the conclusion (I never saw that coming). Additionally, you won’t be able to help but wonder how many of your own friends harbor similar skeletons, ambulatory and otherwise, in their own closets.””
Joe Hartlaub for Bookreporter.com

The Perfect Stranger

The Perfect Stranger

BOOK TWO

In New York Times bestselling author Wendy Corsi Staub’s new thriller, one woman finds herself in the crosshairs of a twisted predator who might just be masked behind a familiar screen name…

During the darkest period of her life, Landry Wells found solace in a group of bloggers who had been in her shoes and lived to tell the tale. She’s shared things with her online friends that even her husband and children didn’t know. Things that now, looking back, make her uneasy.

One of the bloggers is dead, victim of a random crime—or was it? Did she trust too easily; reveal too much? At the funeral a thousand miles from home, Landry is about to come face to face at last with the others. These women are her closest confidantes in the world: they understand her; they know everything about her—and one of them might be a cold-blooded killer…

“As a long time avid fan of Wendy Corsi Staub, I may be a bit biased, but THE PERFECT STRANGER really knocked it out of the park for me. This writer has honed to perfection the ability to create a story with such unique plotlines and twists that no one will ever accuse her of being formulaic or simply rewriting other plotlines. Each book is distinctive and beyond exceptional. THE PERFECT STRANGER incorporates the, sometimes, reckless world of online friendships into the “real world” where bad things can happen to wonderful people; people that are much too trusting and pay the ultimate price for that trust. There are plenty of jumpy moments that will cause your heart to pound and your nerves to shatter; all of it deliciously scary. You will find yourself drawn into the lives of Landry and her online friends because that’s the way that Wendy Corsi Staub constructs it. Whether you are a fan or not, you must pick up a copy of THE PERFECT STRANGER. Just be sure to lock all of your doors and windows before reading it. You will probably want to keep a light or two on as well. Then settle in to relish suspense like you rarely experience.”
—Lynn Cunningham for Fresh Fiction

“Wendy Corsi Staub is known for creating and presenting memorable characters in her novels, and there are several in the mix here. Many of them are introduced in rapid-fire progression during the first quarter of the book, with points of view changing quickly. Those who stay with the narrative (just try to let go!) will sort out the differences in personalities quickly enough and settle into the complex but intriguing storyline (and its subplots) in short order. There is also an underlying and very important theme to the book, that being the increasing tendency of people to reveal personal details online, particularly via social media. The message in THE PERFECT STRANGER is quite clear: Don’t. If you don’t have elements of paranoia in your personality when you start reading this book, you will by the time you finish. Recommended to keep you up all night.”
—Joe Hartlaub for Bookreporter.com

“As always, Staub delivers first-rate characterizations, establishing unique and immediately identifiable personalities for each of the bloggers and their supporting cast, as well as the customary red herrings. The suspense builds to a fever-pitched crescendo in a final act that plays out against a suitably isolated setting and has chilling, poignant ramifications. But it’s the blog posts that punctuate the story that add real emotional depth, revealing critical backstory while also allowing Staub to celebrate the dignity and strength of all those who have courageously fought breast cancer, either privately or publicly. The Perfect Stranger is yet another creative gamble for the author, who has been mixing things up quite a bit in recent years to keep longtime readers on the alert—and it largely pays off. While The Good Sister was a more straightforward genre offering, this one pulls at the heartstrings as much as it teases the mind. And while that may not appeal to those seeking escapism, there’s something to be said for a book that balances thrills with thought-provocation so effortlessly.”
—John Valeri for Hartford Book Examiner

The Black Widow

The Black Widow

BOOK THREE

In a chilling new thriller from New York Times bestselling author Wendy Corsi Staub, one woman looking for love online is entangled in a killer’s terrifying scheme…

In the moonlight, shovelfuls of earth fall on a wooden crate at the bottom of a deep pit. Soon the hole will be filled and covered over with leaves, erasing all trace of the victim below, waking to the horror of being buried alive . . .

Newly divorced Gaby Duran isn’t really expecting to find her soul mate on a dating site like InTune. She just needs a distraction from pining over her ex-husband, Ben, and the happy marriage they once had. And she’s wise enough to know that online, the truth doesn’t always match the profile. Almost everyone lies a little—or a lot.

But Gaby quickly discovers there is much more at stake than her lonely heart. Local singles are going missing after making online connections. And a predator is searching again for the perfect match. One who will fulfill every twisted desire…or die trying.

“Staub is at the top of her writing game with The Black Widow. Even suspense readers will find themselves fully engaged by the wonderfully twisted plot as Staub successfully flirts with some of the established tropes of the suspense genre only to later surprise readers by turning these same classic plot devices on their head. The Black Widow is superior, spine-tingling suspense that fans of Mary Higgins Clark’s early novels will eat up with a spoon.”
—John Charles for Reader to Reader

“A fantastic thriller that will have you trapped in its pages; Staub has made sure that it is virtually impossible to set this one aside and come back to it.”
Suspense Magazine

“At any given time, there were four storylines happening all at once, and yet the author manages to weave them all seamlessly together. The characters are intriguing, and the overall theme of loss and bouncing back from the past will resonate with readers. Despite the multiple storylines and characters, this novel flows amazingly well, making it easy to follow. (Four Stars)”
—RT Book Reviews

Listen to an Audio Excerpt

Cold Hearted (A Novella)

Cold Hearted

A NOVELLA

In this e-novella prequel to New York Times bestselling author Wendy Corsi Staub’s psychological suspense novel The Perfect Stranger, readers are introduced to the enigmatic Johanna Hart.

Abandoned by her teenaged birth mother and raised by callous grandparents, Johanna is determined to escape her bleak Midwest existence at any cost. But that blind ambition comes back to haunt her years later, after she’s reinvented herself as glamorous golden girl Jenna Coeur. Now her secret past has caught up with her, embodied in a calculating young woman who will stop at nothing to destroy her—a woman with a strangely familiar face…

“In a word: terrifying. The author’s latest thriller combines a main character who quickly wins the reader’s heart with tense drama that propels the story forward. The well-plotted mystery features a particularly malevolent villain whose actions will make readers think twice about relationships that develop in cyberspace. Four Stars.”
— RT Book Reviews