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Patricia MacDonald Books In Order

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Publication Order of Totally Gripping Psychological Thrillers Books

The Unforgiven (1981)Description / Buy at Amazon
Stranger in the House (1983)Description / Buy at Amazon
Little Sister (1986)Description / Buy at Amazon
No Way Home (1989)Description / Buy at Amazon
Mother's Day (1994)Description / Buy at Amazon
Secret Admirer (1995)Description / Buy at Amazon
Lost Innocents (1998)Description / Buy at Amazon
Not Guilty (2002)Description / Buy at Amazon
Suspicious Origin (2003)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Girl Next Door (2004)Description / Buy at Amazon
Married to a Stranger (2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
Stolen in the Night (2007)Description / Buy at Amazon
From Cradle to Grave (2009)Description / Buy at Amazon
Cast Into Doubt (2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
Missing Child (2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
Sisters (2013)Description / Buy at Amazon
I See You (2014)Description / Buy at Amazon
Don't Believe a Word (2016)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Girl in the Woods (2018)Description / Buy at Amazon
Safe Haven (2018)Description / Buy at Amazon

Patricia MacDonald is an American author of fiction. She is also known by her full name, Patricia J. MacDonald. Readers know her in the states as well as France, as her psychological suspense novels usually set in small towns have captivated readers in many areas. Her novels have done particularly well in France, as she is a #1 bestselling author there.

MacDonald lived in Greenwich, Connecticut as a child, which is where she grew up. She attended Boston College and graduated, receiving her master’s degree there. She worked in the literary field even before writing her novels, working as a book editor. She also worked as an editor for a New York soap opera magazine.

Her debut novel was a dark novel titled The Unforgiven. It was released in 1981. It was nominated for an Edgar Award by the Mystery Writers of America. Her follow-up second novel was released just two years later and is titled Stranger in the House. It was followed in 1986 by the novel Little Sister, then three years later by No Way Home. Her novel Secret Admirer, released in 1995, ended up winning a literary prize at the 1997 Deauville Film Festival. She has also received prizes for her literature from Literature in Monaco and the International Forum of Cinema.

Patricia MacDonald kept writing, much to the delight of fans of her work. The creepy novel Mother’s Day came out in 1994, Secret Admirer, Lost Innocents, Not Guilty, Suspicious Origin, The Girl Next Door, and Stolen in the Night. She has penned many more novels ever since the 2007 release of Stolen, including From Cradle to Grave, Sisters, I See You, Don’t Believe a Word, and The Girl in the Woods.

Many of her works have been adapted for television and movies. In 2007, many of her novels were adapted into television movies in France. This included Safe Haven, her novel Secret Admirer, The Unforgiven, and Not Guilty, which were turned into French-language movies released on the networks.

For American audiences, Stranger in the House was made into a feature-length film. It was released in 1990 and was directed by Terrence Stamp. Stamp and MacDonald are credited with writing the movie together. It starred Lorraine Bracco and Harry Dean Stanton. The thriller movie was produced by Eagle Films.

When Secrets Kill was made into a television movie, which was based on MacDonald’s novel, Mother’s Day. MacDonald’s novel Missing Child was made into a movie for television in 2015, while her novel Married to a Stranger was made into a movie for tv as well and released the same year. She also appeared in the television series La Grande Librairie in 2010 as herself in episode 2.29.

She resides in New Jersey with her husband, fellow writer Art Bourgeau, and their daughter. She is also working on her next book while living life in Cape May in the Garden State. She has yet to pen an official series, but there is still time for her to do so!

The Unforgiven is the first book written by MacDonald and it did quite well. The main character in this novel is Maggie Fraser. She has said for a long time that she was innocent and even swore on it. Ever since then, she has tried desperately to forget the events that went down that night. But try as she might, she cannot forget any of it. The consequences of those events continue to haunt her, as do the memories of what she saw.

Maggie saw the blood of the man she loved going into the snow from his body. The murder trial that followed after that was making headlines all over the state and was defining the word scandal that year. To add insult to injury, she ended up being found guilty for a crime that she knows that she never committed. But it’s not like she can convince anyone of that, so twelve years in prison for something she didn’t do is the horrible end result. Lost someone you love and go to jail for their murder– isn’t that everything wrapped up into one perfect package?

In the twelve years that she has spent in prison against her will, Maggie has done little other than agonizing over the crime that put her there and the unfairness of it all. A decade is a long time for anyone to spend in jail. But now she has done the time for the crime she never committed and is free to start a new life, never to be jailed for killing someone she loved again.

Maggie decides to completely pack up and start over– although she really has little choice in the matter. Alone in the world, she starts up life again totally unknown in a small island located just off the New England coast. Slowly Maggie tries to put the pieces of her life back together and try to make peace with the past at the same time. She figures that a new job in town with the paper will help her with the process. Maybe the handsome editor of the paper, Jess Herlie, will help her to mend her heart.

But can Maggie ever truly leave the past behind? She’s scared that the nightmare will happen again. When signs that the past might repeat itself pop up, it’s all she can do to keep it together. What will happen? Pick up The Unforgiven to find out for yourself!

The second novel to come out from thriller author Patricia MacDonald is titled Stranger in the House. A Hollywood film was made based off of the novel. Anna Lange is the main character in this novel. She’s been shattered into pieces ever since the disappearance of Paul, her young son. It’s been eleven years and she has never given up the hope that he’s still out there somewhere alive.

Her hope pays off as Paul finally returns. But he doesn’t seem the same as when he left. The family reunion and happiness is cut short when Paul begins acting strangely. Even Anna’s husband and their daughter start to get unnerved by his presence. They become scared of living in the same house with him. Anna thinks that Paul is getting over the trauma that he endured when he met missing. But for Paul, he has no memory of what happened (or that’s what he claims).

If Paul doesn’t remember, someone might. Whoever that might be wants desperately to keep the truth under wraps. Anna must face the past that ripped her apart all those years ago and might finally get some answers about what happened– or see her family ruined forever. Check out Stranger in the House to see what happens in the end!

Book Series In Order » Authors » Patricia MacDonald

6 Responses to “Patricia MacDonald”

  1. Judith: 1 year ago

    I love your books!! When will you be writing more as I’ve missed your books for the past few years – Safe Haven was the last one I read. Please write more!!!

  2. Tamara Hannen-Gorby: 1 year ago

    You are my all time favorite author !! Do you have any books planned for 2023 ??🙏🙏🙏🙏🙏

  3. Ann: 2 years ago

    I am a big fan of Patricia Macdonald’s writing ! I love how she weaves suspense,mystery and humor in her stories. The dialogue and her characters are great too. I was just wondering if she had a new novel coming out ?

  4. Gayle Gorman: 2 years ago

    I have read everyone of Patricia Macdonald’s books and have noticed that nothing new has been written for quite a while.
    Has she retired?If so…what a shame!

  5. Helen Haywald: 3 years ago

    I was updating my lists of favorites and I LOVE your website. I was surprised that books from 2009-2018 standalone novels was missing from the list. I got them from your list in 2020. What happened?

    • Graeme: 3 years ago

      Hi Helen,

      It’s possible they were moved into the Totally Gripping Psychological Thrillers list at the top there? If there are any not on the list at all please let me know. Thanks.


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