If you are having difficulty navigating this website please contact us at member.services@bookofthemonth.com or 1-877-236-8540.

Get your first book for $5 with code PETALS at checkout.

Join today!

We’ll make this quick.

First, enter your email. Then choose your move.

By tapping "Pick a book now" or "Pick a book later", you agree to Book of the Month’s Terms of use and Privacy policy.

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
Thriller

The Silent Patient

BOTY FINALIST

Each year thousands of members vote for our Book of the Year award—congrats to The Silent Patient!

Debut

We love supporting debut authors. Congrats, Alex Michaelides, on your first book!

Early Release

This is an early release that's only available to our members—the rest of the world has to wait to read it.

by Alex Michaelides

Excellent choice

Just enter your email to add this book to your box.

By tapping "Add to box", you agree to Book of the Month’s Terms of use and Privacy policy.

Quick take

A therapist unravels the mind of a shattered woman ... who may be a murderer (or not).

Good to know

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Psychological

    Psychological

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Creepy

    Creepy

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Whodunit

    Whodunit

  • Illustrated icon, Icons_Buzzy

    Buzzy

Synopsis

Alicia Berenson’s life is seemingly perfect. A famous painter married to an in-demand fashion photographer, she lives in a grand house with big windows overlooking a park in one of London’s most desirable areas. One evening her husband Gabriel returns home late from a fashion shoot, and Alicia shoots him five times in the face, and then never speaks another word.

Alicia’s refusal to talk, or give any kind of explanation, turns a domestic tragedy into something far grander, a mystery that captures the public imagination and casts Alicia into notoriety. The price of her art skyrockets, and she, the silent patient, is hidden away from the tabloids and spotlight at the Grove, a secure forensic unit in North London.

Theo Faber is a criminal psychotherapist who has waited a long time for the opportunity to work with Alicia. His determination to get her to talk and unravel the mystery of why she shot her husband takes him down a twisting path into his own motivations—a search for the truth that threatens to consume him....

Read less

Free sample

Get an early look from the first pages of The Silent Patient.
The Silent Patient

Prologue

Alicia Berenson's Diary

JULY 14

I don’t know why I’m writing this.

That’s not true. Maybe I do know and just don’t want to admit it to myself.

I don’t even know what to call it—this thing I’m writing. It feels a little pretentious to call it a diary. It’s not like I have anything to say. Anne Frank kept a diary—not someone like me. Calling it a “journal” sounds too academic, somehow. As if I should write in it every day, and I don’t want to—if it becomes a chore, I’ll never keep it up.

Maybe I’ll call it nothing. An unnamed something that I occasionally write in. I like that better. Once you name something, it stops you seeing the whole of it, or why it matters. You focus on the word, which is just the tiniest part, really, the tip of an iceberg. I’ve never been that comfortable with words—I always think in pictures, express myself with images—so I’d never have started writing this if it weren’t for Gabriel.

I’ve been feeling depressed lately, about a few things. I thought I was doing a good job of hiding it, but he noticed—of course he did, he notices everything. He asked how the painting was going—I said it wasn’t. He got me a glass of wine, and I sat at the kitchen table while he cooked.

Create a free account!

Sign up to see book details, our quick takes, and more.

By tapping "Sign up", you agree to Book of the Month’s Terms of use and Privacy policy.

Why I love it

Since Gone Girl conquered the globe in 2012, bookstore shelves have creaked beneath the weight of countless psychological thrillers. Another 44 were published in the past eight seconds alone—and precious few of these novels actually qualify as psychological suspense. More often than not, they focus on an imperiled protagonist—usually a young woman—whose psychology is neither nuanced nor particularly … well, particular. We might rattle around in the heroine’s head, but absent idiosyncrasies, dimension, or even personality, it’s like touring an empty museum.

Readers, we face a literary epidemic. But Alex Michaelides is here to deliver the cure. The Silent Patient is an eerie, bona fide psychological thriller starring Theo Faber, a psychotherapist who by trade dwells within the inner lives of his charges—one of whom refuses to speak. As Theo attempts to break through to his silent patient—a woman convicted of murdering her husband—a dark story unfolds that is as shocking as it is expertly crafted.

The characters in this novel crackle with complexity—with genuine psychology—and a walk through their minds feels as risky and exhilarating as crossing a minefield. (I would here like to coin the term "mind-field.") This phenomenal interior novel defibrillates the ailing body of the psychological thriller genre. I’m delighted to invite readers into the world of The Silent Patient. Just don’t get too comfortable.

Read less

Member ratings (80,499)

  • Emily P.

    Newport, RI

    “Okay, wait. WHOA.” That was my reaction right when I thought that there couldn’t possibly be another twist left in this story. This was a fast paced thrilling ride with a shocking reveal! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  • Jordan M.

    Biddeford, ME

    ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 10 pgs in I knew this was going to be one of my favorites. Alex is a phenomenal author and the story was exquisite. The tale between Theo and Alicia is so captivating I couldn’t put it down

  • Erin S.

    Boise, ID

    Simply brilliant. It’s not often that I can be kept in the dark and not guess the ending. The Silent Patient did. It basically gave me the small taste of realization and i actually gasped. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  • Jessica I.

    Portland, CT

    The twists had me guessing and reguessing. I enjoyed the game of it all. The timeline makes me want to reread it and know everything from the beginning but overall couldn’t put it down. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  • Cassie G.

    Maxwell, TX

    WOW. I loved everything about this book. About halfway I thought I had it figured out but I was completely wrong! I definitely did NOT see that ending coming. I finished it in 2 days! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Create a free account!

Sign up to see book details, our quick takes, and more.

By tapping "Sign up", you agree to Book of the Month’s Terms of use and Privacy policy.