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Mystery Books

Ready to be on the edge of your seat for the next plot twist? Get your mystery fix with these psychological thrillers, crime novels, procedurals, whodunits, and paranormal mystery books that are sure to keep you turning pages.


While there are many different types of mystery books, these ones are a great place to start:

Like most genres, there are niches within mystery books. Some of the most popular include:

  • Cozy mystery: These mysteries feature minimal to no violence or graphic content, and follow amateur sleuths solving crimes in quaint communities. Example: Murder in G Major, by Alexia Gordon.
  • Detective fiction: Revolves around a professional investigator, like a detective or police officer, solving crimes through investigation and deductive reasoning. Example: The Hound of the Baskervilles by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
  • True crime: These non-fiction narratives explore real-life crimes and investigations, and provide insight into the minds of the criminals and investigators alike. Example: In Cold Blood by Truman Capote.
  • Psychological thrillers: These mysteries dive deep into the human mind and often tell stories through unreliable narrators. They feature twists, turns, and intense suspense. Example: The Shining by Stephen King.

TIP: You can use the filters on the left sidebar to browse different sub-genres of the best mystery books.

If you're looking for a mystery novel that will have you flipping the pages eagerly to find out what happens, we recommend some of the top books of the genre, like:

Keep three things in mind when choosing the right mystery novels for your reading level:

  • 1. Complexity of language: Skim a few pages to make sure it matches your proficiency and preferences and doesn't use too many complex or obscure words
  • 2. Book length: Shorter mystery novels are typically more manageable for busy schedules or newcomers to the genre
  • 3. Thematic content: Opt for mystery novels that align with your comfort level regarding violence, suspense, and graphic language. Reading others' reviews can help, too.

Fortunately, Alibris provides tools to help you filter and search for the best mystery novels. When searching, check the left sidebar for ways to filter results by subject (fiction, romance, thrillers, etc.). If looking for a specific time period, look for the "Historical" heading, or you can search that year and mysteries in the search bar.

You can also filter results to easily find the best YA detective stories for younger readers and other subgenres, like murder mystery books.