The Best Mystery Books You Must Read: Updated 2019

Updated 2019

Perhaps there is nothing better at grabbing our attention than a good mystery! Mysteries are unique for their interesting story lines, usually revolving around crime. The who-done-it has been around for a while, typically in the form of murder mysteries. From Sherlock Holmes to famous comic-book heroes like Batman, the mystery pervades all genres of entertainment.

We love mysteries because of their suspense. The formula hasn’t changed, and it doesn’t need to. There’s always a sense of danger around the corner and a twist at the end sure to shock us. All we care about is finding out what happens next. That’s why popular mystery novels never seem to go out of style.

What Did These Mystery Books Do To Qualify For This List

Any time you are ranking the best of something the results are usually somewhat subjective but we have did our best to come up with a list the readers of the mystery genre will truly like. To come up with this list we took into account:

  • quantity and quality of user reviews
  • sales data
  • public perception
  • opinions of readers of this genres
  • commercial success
  • and of course personal opinion

Take a look at the best Mystery Books you can read right now:

Best Mystery Books

 

Here are the best mystery books by the experts:

1)Murder on the Orient Express, by Agatha Christie

  • Best Mystery BooksBook Summary:Murder on the Orient Express is a murder-mystery taken place in the 1930s aboard a luxurious passenger train. As with many of Agatha Christie’s novels, this too made it to the big screen in 2017 with an unparalleled cast including Michelle Pfeiffer, Judi Dench, Penelope Cruz, Johnny Depp, Willem Dafoe, and Derek Jacobi.Soon into the story, a murder is discovered, onboard the train, however, you have vacationing Hercule Poirot, whom so it happens is a Belgian detective. So whom is the murderer? Could it be any of the breathing passengers on the train, someone that may have snuck onto the train or a conspiracy amongst all on board?
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2)Basic Instinct, by Richard Osborne

  • Best Mystery BooksBook Summary:The novel to this film was written after the release of the movie. Some would suggest the novel is more entertaining than the film itself. The story brings a combination of a rather violent detective and manipulative and seductive female crime writer.
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3)The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, by Stieg Larsso

  • Best Mystery BooksBook Summary:The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo is the story of Harriet Vanger, the heir of one of Sweden’s wealthiest families who disappeared nearly half a century ago. Now her aging uncle persists to find the truth. He hires journalist Mikael Blomkvist to investigate.
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4)Angels & Demons (Robert Langdon), by Dan Brown

  • Best Mystery BooksBook Summary:An ancient secret brotherhood. A devastating new weapon of destruction. An unthinkable target. When world-renowned Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon is summoned to his first assignment to a Swiss research facility to analyze a mysterious symbol—seared into the chest of a murdered physicist—he discovers evidence of the unimaginable: the resurgence of an ancient secret brotherhood known as the Illuminati…the most powerful underground organization ever to walk the earth. The Illuminati has now surfaced to carry out the final phase of its legendary vendetta against its most hated enemy—the Catholic Church.
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5)Shutter Island, by Dennis Lehane

  • Best Mystery BooksBook Summary:In the year 1954, U.S. Marshal Teddy Daniels and his new partner, Chuck Aule, come to Shutter Island, home of Ashecliffe Hospital for the Criminally Insane, to investigate an unexplained disappearance. Multiple murderess Rachel Solando is loose somewhere on this barren island, despite having been kept under constant surveillance in a locked, guarded cell. As a killer hurricane bears relentlessly down on the island, hints of radical experimentation and covert government machinations add darker, more sinister shades to an already bizarre case. Because nothing at Ashecliffe Hospital is remotely what it seems.
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6)Mystic River, by Dennis Lehane

  • Best Mystery BooksBook Summary:The novel circles around three boys who grow up together. As the story begins, one of the boys is snatched by child molesters while the other two boys are playing nearby.
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7)Perfume: The Story of a Murderer, by Patrick Süskind

  • Best Mystery BooksBook Summary:In this story, you have a man with one impeccable skill; a sense of smell. Pursuing the art of being a perfumer isn’t enough for him though. Instead, his passion leads him on a dark path searching for the ultimate scent.
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8)Postmortem, by Patricia Cornwell

  • Best Mystery BooksBook Summary:Taking place in Richmond, Virgina, Medical examiner Kay Scarpetta has bad vibes: a serial killer on the loose leaving very few clues. Is this going to be just like any of her cases or is something more sinister at work here?
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9)The Bone Collector, by Jeffery Deaver

  • Best Mystery BooksBook Summary:Lincoln Rhyme was a luminous criminologist and accomplished in the field of forensics — until an accident left him physically disabled and emotionally broken.
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10)The Secret Place, by Tana French

  • Best Mystery BooksBook Summary:A year ago a boy was found murdered at a girlsʼ boarding school, and the case was never solved. Detective Stephen Moran has been waiting for his chance to join Dublin’s Murder Squad when sixteen-year-old Holly Mackey arrives in his office with a photo of the boy with the caption: “I KNOW WHO KILLED HIM.” Stephen joins with Detective Antoinette Conway to reopen the case—beneath the watchful eye of Holly’s father, fellow detective Frank Mackey. With the clues leading back to Holly’s close-knit group of friends, to their rival clique, and to the tangle of relationships that bound them all to the murdered boy, the private underworld of teenage girls turns out to be more mysterious and more dangerous than the detectives imagined. One of the best mystery books of all time.
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Best Mystery Movies

If you enjoyed the best mystery books, why stop there? Take a look at our list of best mystery movies and witness these marvelous films from the big screen.

1)Get Out

Starring: Daniel Kaluuya (Actor), Allison Williams
Directed by: Jordan Peele

Movie Summary:A young African American man visits his Caucasian girlfriend’s cursed family estate.

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2)Shutter Island

Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio (Actor), Mark Ruffalo
Directed by: Martin Scorsese

Movie Summary:When U.S. Marshal Teddy Daniels (DiCaprio) arrives at the asylum for the criminally insane on Shutter Island, what starts as a routine investigation quickly takes a sinister turn. As the investigation unfolds and Teddy uncovers more shocking and terrifying truths about the island, he learns there are some places that never let you go.

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3)The Others

Starring: Nicole Kidman, Fionnula Flanagan, and Christopher Eccleston
Directed by: Alejandro Amenábar

Movie Summary:Screen sensation Nicole Kidman delivers an utterly unforgettable performance in this scary and stylish thriller! While awaiting her husband’s return from war, Grace(Kidman) and her two young children live an unusually isolated existence behind the locked doors and drawn curtains of a secluded island mansion.

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4)The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

Starring: Michael Nyqvist, Noomi Rapace, and Lena Endre
Directed by: Niels Arden Oplev

Movie Summary:A journalist is aided in his search for a woman who has been missing — or dead — for forty years by a young female hacker.

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5)Memento

Starring: Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss, and Joe Pantoliano
Directed by: Christopher Nolan

Movie Summary:A man juggles searching for his wife’s murderer and keeping his short-term memory loss from being an obstacle.

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Best Mystery Audio Books

Now that you’ve seen our list of the best mystery books and movies, I’m sure you’ll be interested in trying out more of the best mystery books in audio!

1)Confessions by Kanae Minato and Stephen Snyder

Book Summary:Her pupils murdered her daughter. Now she will have her revenge.

After calling off her engagement in the wake of a tragic revelation, Yuko Moriguchi had nothing to live for except her only child, four-year-old child, Manami. Now, following an accident on the grounds of the middle school where she teaches, Yuko has given up and tendered her resignation.

But first she has one last lecture to deliver. She tells a story that upends everything her students ever thought they knew about two of their peers, and sets in motion a diabolical plot for revenge.

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2)She Rides Shotgun by Jordan Harper

Book Summary:Eleven-year-old Polly McClusky is shy, too old for the teddy bear she carries with her everywhere, when she is unexpectedly reunited with her father, Nate, fresh out of jail and driving a stolen car. He takes her from the front of her school into a world of robbery, violence, and the constant threat of death. And he does it to save her life.

Nate made dangerous enemies in prison – a gang called Aryan Steel has put out a bounty on his head, counting on its members on the outside to finish him off. They’ve already murdered his ex-wife, Polly’s mother. And Polly is their next target.

Nate and Polly’s lives soon become a series of narrow misses, of evading the bad guys and the police, of sleepless nights in motels. Out on the lam, Polly is forced to grow up early: With barely any time to mourn her mother, she must learn how to take a punch and pull off a drug-house heist. She finds herself transforming from a shy little girl into a true fighter. Nate, in turn, learns what it’s like to love fiercely and unconditionally – a love he’s never quite felt before. But can their powerful bond transcend the dangerous existence he’s carved out for them? Will they ever be able to live an honest life, free of fear?
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3)Trouble Never Sleeps by Stephanie Tromly

Book Summary:Digby and Zoe have been skirting around each other for so long that you might think they’d lose their magic if they ever actually hooked up. But never fear – there’s all the acerbic wit, steamy chemistry, and sarcastic banter you could possibly hope for.

Now that Digby’s back in town, he’s plunged Zoe (and their Scooby Gang of wealthy frenemy Sloane, nerd-tastic genius Felix, and aw-shucks-handsome Henry) back into the deep end on the hunt for his kidnapped sister. He’s got a lead, but it involves breaking into a secret government research facility, paying a drug dealer off with a Bentley, and possibly committing treason. The schemes might be over-the-top, but this Breakfast Club cast is irresistibly real as they cope with regular high school stuff from social media shaming to dating your best friend, all with a twist no one will see coming.
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4)The Good Son: A Novel by Jeong Jeong

Book Summary:Who can you trust if you can’t trust yourself?

Early one morning, 26-year-old Yu-jin wakes up to a strange metallic smell and a phone call from his brother asking if everything’s all right at home – he missed a call from their mother in the middle of the night. Yu-jin soon discovers her murdered body, lying in a pool of blood at the bottom of the stairs of their stylish Seoul duplex. He can’t remember much about the night before; having suffered from seizures for most of his life, Yu-jin often has trouble with his memory. All he has to go on is a faint impression of his mother calling his name. But was she calling for help? Or begging for her life?

Thus begins Yu-jin’s frantic three-day search to uncover what happened that night and to finally learn the truth about himself and his family. A shocking and addictive psychological thriller, The Good Son explores the mysteries of mind and memory, and the twisted relationship between a mother and son, with incredible urgency. One of the best mystery books available in audio.
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5)Allegedly by Tiffany D. Jackson

Book Summary:Mary B. Addison killed a baby.

Allegedly. She didn’t say much in that first interview with detectives, and the media filled in the only blanks that mattered: a white baby had died while under the care of a churchgoing black woman and her nine-year-old daughter. The public convicted Mary, and the jury made it official. But did she do it?

There wasn’t a point to setting the record straight before, but now she’s got Ted – and their unborn child – to think about. When the state threatens to take her baby, Mary’s fate now lies in the hands of the one person she distrusts the most: her momma. No one knows the real Momma. But does anyone know the real Mary?
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Conclusion

What do you think about our list of best mystery books? If you have another genre that you prefer to read we have probably compiled a list of our favorites for that genre too. So if you are looking for something other than the best mystery books you can find other genres here.

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