Mystery Book Reviews

The best mystery book reviews. Mysteries are typically crime stories in which readers follows a detective or amateur sleuth attempting to solve a criminal puzzle. Compared with “crime thrillers,” mysteries often feature less graphic violence and shocking subject matter.

Gottiguard, a Painfully Funny, Can’t-Miss Mystery by Rich Leder

The Bottom Line: Witty Sleuth Kate McCall returns to solve her father’s murder in this supremely satisfying and painfully funny mystery.  When readers first fell in love with Kate McCall, Rich Leder’s Workman’s Complication introduced us to the clever way-off-Broadway actress who walked dogs for a living. After her father’s brutal murder, she inherited his PI firm and reluctantly took over his cases. Gottiguard takes …

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Woman Over the Edge, a Smoldering Small Town Romantic Suspense Thriller

The Bottom Line: A provocative, smoldering small town romantic suspense thriller that fans of Big Little Lies will love. Each summer, high school sisters Bella and Mia Hughes work in their family’s lakeside resort in Minnesota. After hours, they spend their time hanging out with a close circle of friends and flirting with boys on the lake. But their idyllic summer existence comes to an …

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Gag Me, a Must-Read Whodunnit by Susan Wingate

The Bottom Line: A must-read whodunnit that is fresh, funny and truly innovative. Gag Me transports readers into the fragile psyche of a small-town waitress whose best friend, Winsey, is murdered. She works at a diner in tiny Friday Harbor, Washington, and had the misfortune of being the last person seen with Winsey. As such, she’s called in for questioning, and soon after, taken to …

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The Lincoln Highway, an All-American Mystery by Amor Towles

The Bottom Line: The cross-country quest at the heart of the novel defies genre, but will delight fans of unconventional crime thrillers. In 1954, Emmett Watson is releases from a juvenile work farm after accidentally killing another boy. His father has died, and the family ranch is being repossessed. His young brother Billy urges him to take them west in search of the mother who …

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The Pine Barrens Stratagem, a Smoldering and Timely Crime Thriller by Ken Harris

The Bottom Line: A contemporary crime thriller that works on every level, from the smoldering investigation to the whipsaw banter between characters you’re bound to love. Ken Harris’ The Pine Barrens Stratagem centers around Steve Rockfish, a private detective hit so hard by the COVID-19 pandemic that he’s on the verge of losing everything. Creditors are even threatening to repossess his car, a 2015 Dodge …

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Threads, a Mesmerizing Crime Thriller by Bryan Cassiday

The Bottom Line: A fast-paced, mesmerizing blend of classic LA noir and contemporary whodunnit. Bryan Cassiday’s fourth Scott Brody thriller finds the private investigator framed for the the murder of a controversial LA fashion designer. It doesn’t look good for Brody. The explosion that killed designer Max Reed happens not long after Brody delivers a package from local mobster Sal Andrasi, and he knows the …

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Vice & Virtue, a Smart Police Procedural by Justin M. Kiska

The Bottom Line: This smooth-as-whiskey police procedural proves Kiska’s already smart series is only getting better. Recommended. The trouble with skeletons is that they never stay buried for too long. And novelist Justin Kiska unearths them literally and figuratively in his sophomore novel and continuation of the Parker City Mystery series. Detective Ben Winters and his partner Tommy Mason are back. When we first met …

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Blaze In, Blaze Out – a Superb Crime Drama by Joseph Lewis

The Bottom Line: A superb crime drama simmering with suspense and deep character studies en route to an explosive finale. Joseph Lewis’ latest novel tells the story of two lawmen who find themselves hunted by killers loyal to an Ukranian kingpin. The book opens in Chicago’s Cook County Criminal Court, as a jury finds Dmitry Andruko guilty on illegal weapons trafficking and murder. Before disappearing …

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The Best Crime Thriller Books of the Decade

The 2010s was a decade chock full of amazing mysteries and thrillers. In particular, the crime thriller genre – inclusive of detective fiction, FBI thrillers, serial killer fiction, heist thrillers, police procedurals and many other whodunnits – has burned brightly. While the genre’s old guard continued to crank out plenty of winners, the decade’s best crime thrillers arguably came from relative newcomers like Gillian Flynn, …

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A Quantum Alibi, The Year’s Best Sci-Fi Thriller

The Bottom Line: Murder mystery meets quantum fiction in this addictive, cinematic novel from the author of The Newton Code. Honored in the Best Thriller Book Awards as the Best Sci-Fi Thriller of 2021. Liam Fialkov’s latest novel opens with a lecture at Columbia University by Professor Patrick Eldrige, an authority on quantum physics. Eldridge makes a bold claim: after the lecture, he will travel …

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