2 Ways to Read Harlan Coben Books in Order | 35+ Books

Looking for how to read the Harlan Coben books in order? We’ve got you covered. Whether you’re reading a book from his most popular series or one of his standalone novels, Coben’s books are full of unexpected twists and turns.

Harlan Coben’s standalone psychological thrillers have no connection to each other; therefore, they can be read in any order. For his Myron and Mickey series, however, it is important to read the books in order of publication as this will allow you to grasp the mind of the author.

Coben’s 30 novels have sold more than 75 million copies and been translated into 45 languages. His success in writing has opened prestigious avenues for him with different key partners.

He was the first writer in more than a decade to write a fictional piece in the New York Times for Father’s Day. He wrote a short story, The Key to My Father, which was published on June 15, 2003.

His columns and essays have appeared in many top publications, such as Parade magazine, the New York Times and Bloomberg View.

Who is Harlan Coben?

Harlan Coben is an American bestselling author born in 1962 to a Jewish family in Newark, New Jersey. He attended Amherst College, majoring in political science. Then, after graduation, he worked for his father in a travel industry company.

In his senior year at college, he realized he wanted to be a writer and published his first book, Play Dead, in 1990. Thirty years later, his books have been published in at least 45 languages around the world. His books, films, and TV shows have received an immense global following.

Harlan is married to Anne Armstrong Coben, a paediatrician, and they have four children.

#1 Harlan Coben Books in Order of Publication

The below list includes all of the books Harlan Coben has published. However, this list is not the best way to read the Harlan Coben books in order as it mixes together his Myron Bolitar series, Mickey Bolitar series, and his standalone novels together.

  1. Play Dead (1990)
  2. Miracle Cure (1991)
  3. Deal Breaker (1995)
  4. Drop Shot (1996)
  5. Fade Away (1996)
  6. Back Spin (1997)
  7. One False Move (1998)
  8. The Final Detail (1999)
  9. Darkest Fear (2000)
  10. Tell No One (2001)
  11. Gone for Good (2002)
  12. No Second Chance (2003)
  13. Just One Look (2004)
  14. The Innocent (2005)
  15. Promise Me (2006)
  16. The Woods (2007)
  17. Hold Tight (2008)
  18. Long Lost (2009)
  19. Caught (2010)
  20. Live Wire (2011)
  21. Shelter (2011)
  22. Stay Close (2012)
  23. Seconds Away (2012)
  24. Six Years (2013)
  25. Missing You (2014)
  26. Found (2014)
  27. The Stranger (2015)
  28. Fool Me Once (2016)
  29. Home (2016)
  30. Don’t Let Go (2017)
  31. Run Away (2019)
  32. The Boy from the Woods (2020)
  33. Win (2021)
  34. The Match (2022)
  35. I Will Find You (2023)
  36. Think Twice (Expected: May 14, 2024)

#2 Harlan Coben Books in Order of Series

Harlan Coben’s books easily fit into three categories. Therefore, this is the best way to read Coben’s books, as they follow a chronological timeline and the same set of characters.

  1. Myron Bolitar Series
  2. Mickey Bolitar Series
  3. The Wilde Series
  4. Standalone Novels

Myron Bolitar Books in Order

The Myron Bolitar series follows the titular character who becomes an accidental detective. Myron used to be a basketball player, but is working as a sports agent at the outset of the series. He also owns MB SportsReps, which is an agency representing sports stars and celebrities.

  1. Deal Breaker (1995)
  2. Drop Shot (1996)
  3. Fade Away (1996)
  4. Back Spin (1997)
  5. One False Move (1998)
  6. The Final Detail (1999)
  7. Darkest Fear (2000)
  8. Promise Me (2006)
  9. Long Lost (2009)
  10. Live Wire (2011)
  11. Home (2016)
  12. Think Twice (Expected: May 14, 2024)

Mickey Bolitar Books in Order

Myron’s 15-year-old nephew Mickey Bolitar also features in his own series.

  1. Shelter (2011)
  2. Seconds Away (2012)
  3. Found (2014)

Harlan Coben’s Wilde Series

Wilde is Harlan Coben’s newest series, and it features a brand new protagonist.

  1. The Boy from the Woods (2020)
  2. The Match (2022)

Windsor Horne Lockwood III Series

  1. Win (2021)

Harlan Coben Standalone Books in Order

Harlan Coben’s standalone novels follow a different set of characters within each novel, but deliver on being a suspenseful psychological thriller full of twists and turns. While it is not necessary to read his standalone books in order of publication, doing so will allow you to follow Coben’s growth as an author.

  1. Play Dead (1990)
  2. Miracle Cure (1991)
  3. Tell No One (2001)
  4. Gone for Good (2002)
  5. No Second Chance (2003)
  6. Just One Look (2004)
  7. The Innocent (2005)
  8. The Woods (2007)
  9. Hold Tight (2008)
  10. Caught (2010)
  11. Stay Close (2012)
  12. Six Years (2013)
  13. Missing You (2014)
  14. The Stranger (2015)
  15. Fool Me Once (2016)
  16. Don’t Let Go (2017)
  17. Run Away (2019)
  18. I Will Find You (2023)

Harlan Coben’s Films

With more than 75 million books in print worldwide, Harlan Coben has received overwhelming interest from Netflix. He is the creator and executive producer of several Netflix television dramas, such as The Stranger, Safe, The Five, and The Woods.

He was also the showrunner and executive producer for two French TV mini-series: Une chance de trop and Juste un regard. His novel, Tell No One, was made into a renowned French film directed by Guillaume Canet and starring François Cluzet.

The film adaption of Tell No One was the top box office foreign-language film in the US, winning the Lumière Award for Best Picture. It was also nominated for nine César Awards, the national film award of France, and won four. Its wins included best music, best director, and best actor.

Keine zweite Chance is a German film based on Harlan’s novel No Second Chance.

A Summary of the First 10 Standalone Books

Play Dead Harlan Coben Books in Order

1. Play Dead

Theirs was a marriage made in tabloid heaven, but no sooner had supermodel Laura Ayars and Celtics star David Baskin said “I do” than tragedy struck. While honeymooning on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, David went out for a swim. And then he never returned.

Now widowed and grieving, Laura has a thousand questions and no answers. Her search for the truth will draw her into a web of lies and deception that stretches back 30 years. Meanwhile on the court at the Boston Garden, a rookie phenom makes his spectacular debut.

Miracle Cure Harlan Coben

2. Miracle Cure

They’re one of the country’s most telegenic couples: Beloved TV journalist Sara Lowell and New York’s hottest basketball star, Michael Silverman. Their family and social connections tie them to the highest echelons of the political, medical, and sports worlds.

But these threads will tangle them up in one of the most controversial and deadly issues of our time.

Because in a clinic on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, a doctor has dedicated his life to eradicating a divisive and devastating disease. Fortunately, one by one, his patients are getting well. But also one by one, they’re being targeted by a serial killer.

Now Michael has the disease; while there’s only one cure, there are many ways to die.

Tell No One

3. Tell No One

For Dr. David Beck, the loss was shattering and every day for the past eight years, he has relived the horror of what happened.

The gleaming lake; the pale moonlight; the piercing screams. The night his wife was taken. The last night he saw her alive.

Everyone tells him it’s time to move on, to forget the past once and for all. But for David Beck, there can be no closure. Then a message has appears on his computer, a phrase only he and his dead wife know. Suddenly Beck is taunted with the impossible: That somewhere, somehow, Elizabeth is alive.

Beck must tell no one, and so he doesn’t. Instead, he runs from the people he trusts the most, plunging headlong into a search for the shadowy figure whose messages hold out a desperate hope.

But already Beck is being hunted down. He’s headed straight into the heart of a dark and deadly secret, and someone intends to stop him before he gets there.

Gone for Good Harlan Coben

4. Gone for Good

As a boy, Will Klein had a hero: His older brother, Ken. Then, on a warm suburban night in the Kleins’ affluent New Jersey neighborhood, a young woman — a girl Will had once loved — was found brutally murdered in her family’s basement. The prime suspect: Ken Klein.

With the evidence against him overwhelming, Ken simply vanished. And when his family never heard from Ken again, they were sure he was gone for good.

Eleven years have since passed, and Will has found proof that Ken is alive. But this is just the first in a series of stunning revelations as Will must confront startling truths about his brother, and even himself.

As a violent mystery unwinds around him, Will knows he must press his search all the way to the end, because the most powerful surprises are yet to come.

No Second Chance

5. No Second Chance

Shot twice by an unseen assailant, Dr. Marc Seidman now lies in a hospital bed. His wife is dead, and his six-month-old daughter has vanished.

But just when his world seems forever shattered, the ransom note arrives: We are watching. If you contact the authorities, you will never see your daughter again. 

This time there will be no second chance. With no one to trust, and mired in a deepening quicksand of deception and deadly secrets, Marc clings to one unwavering vow: Bring home his daughter, at any cost.

Just One Look Harlan Coben Books in Order

6. Just One Look

An ordinary snapshot causes a mother’s world to unravel in an instant. After picking up her two young children from school, Grace Lawson looks through a newly developed set of photographs. She finds an odd one in the pack: A mysterious picture from perhaps twenty years ago, showing four strangers she can’t identify.

But there is one face she recognizes — that of her husband, from before she knew him. When her husband sees the photo that night, he leaves their home and drives off without explanation.

She doesn’t know where he’s going, or why he’s leaving. Or even if he’s ever coming back. Nor does she realize how dangerous the search for him will be.

Because there are others interested in both her husband’s past and that photo, including Eric Wu: A fierce, silent killer who will not be stopped from finding his quarry, no matter who or what stands in his way.

Her world turned upside down, filled with doubts about her herself and marriage, Grace must confront the dark corners of her own tragic past she struggles to learn the truth, find her husband, and save her family.

The Innocent Harlan Coben

7. The Innocent

Some mistakes can change your life forever. For Matt Hunter, that mistake came in one terrible moment when his attempt to help a friend and stop a fight resulted in an accidental death. Matt was then convicted of manslaughter and sent to prison; time that his peers spent in college, Matt endured behind bars. 

Nine years since his release from prison, his innocence long forgotten, Matt’s an ex-con who takes nothing for granted. With his wife Olivia pregnant, and the two of them closing on a house in his hometown, things are finally looking up. Until the day Matt gets a shocking, inexplicable video call from Olivia’s phone. And in that instant, the unraveling begins. 

A mysterious man who begins tailing Matt turns up dead and a beloved nun is murdered. Local and federal authorities, including homicide investigator Loren Muse, a childhood schoolmate of Matt’s with a troubled past of her own, see all signs pointing to a former criminal with one murder already under his belt: Matt Hunter. Unwilling to lose everything for a second time, Matt and Olivia must go outside the law in a desperate attempt to save their future together.

The Woods

8. The Woods

Paul Copeland, a New Jersey county prosecutor, is still grieving the loss of his sister twenty years ago. When she walked into the woods, never to be seen again.

But now, a homicide victim is found with evidence linking him to the disappearance. The victim could be the boy who also vanished along with Paul’s sister.

And, as hope rises that his sister could still be alive, dangerous secrets from his family’s past threaten to tear apart everything Paul has been trying to hold together.

Hold Tight Harlan Coben Books in Order

9. Hold Tight

Tia and Mike Baye never imagined they’d become the type of overprotective parents who spy on their kids. But their sixteen-year-old son Adam has been unusually distant lately, and after the suicide of his classmate Spencer Hill — the latest in a string of issues at school — they can’t help but worry.

So, they install a spy program on Adam’s computer, and within days they is a message from an unknown correspondent to their son: Just stay quiet and all safe.

Meanwhile, browsing through an online memorial for Spencer put together by his classmates, Betsy Hill sees a photo that appears to be from the night of her son’s death. And he wasn’t alone. She thinks it is Adam Baye standing just outside the camera’s range.

But when Adam goes missing, it soon becomes clear that something deep and sinister has infected their community. For Tia and Mike Baye, the question they must answer is this: When it comes to your kids, is it possible to know too much?

Caught Harlan Coben

10. Caught

Seventeen-year-old Haley McWaid is a good girl, the pride of her suburban New Jersey family, captain of the lacrosse team, headed off to college next year with all the hopes and dreams her doting parents can pin on her. Which is why, when her mother wakes one morning to find that Haley never came home the night before, and three months quickly pass without word from the girl, the community assumes the worst.

Wendy Tynes is a reporter on a mission, to identify and bring down sexual predators via elaborate and nationally televised sting operations. Working with local police on her news program Caught in the Act, Wendy and her team have publicly shamed dozens of men by the time she encounters her latest target. Dan Mercer is a social worker known as a friend to troubled teens, but his story soon becomes more complicated than Wendy could have imagined.  


You now have a clear plan on how to read Harlan Coben books in order of series. This will make it easy for you to keep track of these books.

Looking for more books in order?

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5 thoughts on “2 Ways to Read Harlan Coben Books in Order | 35+ Books

  1. I’ve just read 18 h.coben books in 31 days, but in no particular order. Don’t know if this would have helped me or not. 3 more on my nightstand. Then, back to the bookstore.

  2. My wife and I have now read all 35 of Harlan Coben’s awesome books. Please don’t stop writing, is two a year too much to ask?

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