50 Most Popular True Crime Books of All Time


True crime is a non-fiction literary and film genre in which the author examines an actual crime and details the actions of real people.

1. I’ll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman’s Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer

Michelle McNamara | 2018 | ★★★★★ | amazon.com


2. The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America

Erik Larson | 2003 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


3. Columbine

Dave Cullen | 2009 | ★★★★★ | amazon.com


4. In Cold Blood

Truman Capote | 1966 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


5. Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI

David Grann | 2017 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


6. Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

John Berendt | 1994 | ★★★☆☆ | amazon.com


7. Under the Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith

Jon Krakauer | 2003 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


8. Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders

Vincent Bugliosi | 1974 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


9. The Stranger Beside Me: Ted Bundy: The Shocking Inside Story

Ann Rule | 1980 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


10. Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town

Jon Krakauer | 2015 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


11. A Stolen Life

Jaycee Dugard | 2011 | ★★★☆☆ | amazon.com


12. Mindhunter: Inside the FBI’s Elite Serial Crime Unit

John Edward Douglas | 1995 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


13. The Road to Jonestown: Jim Jones and Peoples Temple

Jeff Guinn | 2017 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


14. Small Sacrifices: A True Story of Passion and Murder

Ann Rule | 1987 | ★★★★★ | amazon.com


15. Devil’s Knot: The True Story of the West Memphis Three

Mara Leveritt | 2002 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


16. Green River, Running Red: The Real Story of the Green River Killer — America’s Deadliest Serial Murderer

Ann Rule | 2004 | ★★★☆☆ | amazon.com


17. The Poisoner’s Handbook: Murder and the Birth of Forensic Medicine in Jazz Age New York

Deborah Blum | 2010 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


18. The Monster of Florence

Douglas Preston | 2008 | ★★★☆☆ | amazon.com


19. The Fact of a Body: A Murder and a Memoir

Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich | 2017 | ★★★☆☆ | amazon.com


20. People Who Eat Darkness: The True Story of a Young Woman Who Vanished from the Streets of Tokyo — and the Evil That Swallowed Her Up

Richard Lloyd Parry | 2010 | ★★★☆☆ | amazon.com


21. Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets

David Simon | 1991 | ★★★★★ | amazon.com


22. The Innocent Man: Murder and Injustice in a Small Town

John Grisham | 2006 | ★★★☆☆ | amazon.com


23. My Friend Dahmer

Derf Backderf | 2012 | ★★★☆☆ | amazon.com


24. Too Late to Say Goodbye: A True Story of Murder and Betrayal

Ann Rule | 2007 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


25. And Never Let Her Go: Thomas Capano: The Deadly Seducer

Ann Rule | 1999 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


26. Fatal Vision

Joe McGinniss | 1983 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


27. Lost Girls: An Unsolved American Mystery

Robert Kolker | 2013 | ★☆☆☆☆ | amazon.com


28. Bitter Harvest

Ann Rule | 1997 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


29. The Cases That Haunt Us

John Edward Douglas | 2000 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


30. Every Breath You Take: A True Story of Obsession, Revenge, and Murder

Ann Rule | 2000 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


31. American Fire: Love, Arson, and Life in a Vanishing Land

Monica Hesse | 2017 | ★★★☆☆ | amazon.com


32. Dead By Sunset: Perfect Husband, Perfect Killer?

Ann Rule | 1995 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


33. The Good Nurse: A True Story of Medicine, Madness, and Murder

Charles Graeber | 2013 | ★★★☆☆ | amazon.com


34. Assuming Names: A Con Artist’s Masquerade

Tanya Thompson | 2014 | ☆☆☆☆☆ | amazon.com


35. The Killer of Little Shepherds: A True Crime Story and the Birth of Forensic Science

Douglas Starr | 2010 | ★★★☆☆ | amazon.com


36. Whoever Fights Monsters: My Twenty Years Tracking Serial Killers for the FBI

Robert K. Ressler | 1992 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


37. If You Really Loved Me

Ann Rule | 1991 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


38. Zodiac

Robert Graysmith | 1986 | ★★★☆☆ | amazon.com


39. The Night Stalker

Philip Carlo | 1996 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


40. True Crime Addict: How I Lost Myself in the Mysterious Disappearance of Maura Murray

James Renner | 2016 | ★★☆☆☆ | amazon.com


41. The Executioner’s Song

Norman Mailer | 1979 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


42. Everything She Ever Wanted

Ann Rule | 1992 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


43. The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher: A Shocking Murder and the Undoing of a Great Victorian Detective

Kate Summerscale | 2008 | ☆☆☆☆☆ | amazon.com


44. The Onion Field

Joseph Wambaugh | 1973 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


45. Portrait of a Killer: Jack the Ripper — Case Closed

Patricia Cornwell | 2002 | ☆☆☆☆☆ | amazon.com


46. The Murder of the Century: The Gilded Age Crime that Scandalized a City and Sparked the Tabloid Wars

Paul Collins | 2011 | ★☆☆☆☆ | amazon.com


47. And the Sea Will Tell

Vincent Bugliosi | 1991 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


48. Death in the City of Light: The Serial Killer of Nazi-Occupied Paris

David King | 2011 | ★☆☆☆☆ | amazon.com


49. The I-5 Killer

Ann Rule | 1984 | ★★★★☆ | amazon.com


50. Deviant: The Shocking True Story of Ed Gein, the Original Psycho

Harold Schechter | 1989 | ★★★☆☆ | amazon.com