A good murder mystery book, a cup of coffee, pair of pajamas, and your blanket sound like a perfect fall vibe. There is already something mysterious and inexplicable about winters. And the hint of mystery and suspense makes it even better. The fear of the murderer thinking he could be anywhere near you and the satisfaction of having the instinct of a homicide detective to solve the clues brings some good feelings no one can explain. The toxic the story, the better the book is.
A compelling mystery is something that everyone enjoys. We all grew up from watching scooby-doo to reading mysteries by famous writers like Agatha Christie, which entail the most heinous crime of murder. Even if you have work the next day, murder mysteries are worth staying up late for. The most challenging part is determining when to expose different leads to your audience so that they stay involved and continue reading till the real surprise at the end.
Do you want to read some gripping murder mysteries? You’re lucky, whether you’re a newbie to this genre or an experienced fan yearning for new content. You don’t want to miss the odds-on favorite.
List of Top 15 Best Murder Mystery
We’ve done the homework and prepared a list of the finest murder mystery books for you, all of which are ready to complement your craving for a classic thriller.
1. "And Then There Were None" by Agatha Christie
It’s out of the question to discuss mystery books without mentioning the iconic Agatha Christie, aka Queen of Mystery. Naturally, therefore, her work must be the top priority on your list.
“And Then There Were None” is her most impressive work. The story includes a crew of ten individuals invited to a remote mansion in an obscure location. But once they arrive, their host, an odd millionaire whom none of them is familiar with, is nowhere to be seen. Each guest is forced to confront the music and tackle the repercussions of their complicated pasts. As the days progress, they begin to die one by one, just as portrayed in a well-known nursery rhyme. Finally, shocking events followed by another unreal incident occur, leaving the audience with questions like “Who can be the killer?” Will anyone make it? From beginning to end, you’ll be hooked!
“Gone Girl” was the #1 New York Times Best Seller Fiction for eight straight weeks. This novel was the year’s exciting literary sensation. It was also converted into a movie that was released in October 2014. Her book has garnered a lot of positive feedback, particularly from authors like Stephen King.
The grim tale is centred around a serial killer in a village called Missouri and a journalist who travelled from Chicago to report the story. Nick and Dune’s Fifth-anniversary preparations were in full swing when suddenly the wife disappeared. Nick becomes sceptical as he comes under growing pressure from the cops and the press. Is he truly a killer, despite his peculiar evasiveness?
3. “One of us is lying” by Karen M. McManus
“One of us is lying” is a thrilling murder mystery and was #1 New York Times Best Seller, and Entertainment Weekly ranked it one of the Best Ten books of the year. Karen is a renowned young adult thriller novelist. If you pay attention, you might be able to solve the mystery.
This is the mystery of 5 students who walked into detention, and only four of the five survived. Simon was killed and had intended to expose juicy secrets about all four of his bright classmates, making them all candidates for his death. The real question is how far you are willing to go to save your secrets?
4. “The Chestnut man” by Søren Sveistrup
This full-throttle thriller, which is currently a Top 10 Netflix series, is a must-read/watch for mystery fans. Søren Sveistrup is the globally famous screenwriter of the Danish television series The Killing, which has received several prizes and has been released in over 100 countries.
A little girl is brutally killed in a peaceful Copenhagen neighbourhood, and one of her hands is removed when she is recovered. A tiny doll fashioned of chestnuts swings above her.
When forensics examine the doll, they discover a fingerprint matching a little girl abducted and killed a year before. The murder events were followed one by another, making people think who is following and why him?
Another New York Times bestseller is one of the gripping murder mystery books ever written. It is a masterpiece of author Tana French who also wrote other thrilling adventures like In the Woods, Faithful Place, Broken Harbor, The Trespasser.
The whole story revolves around the confession note of “I know who killed him,” along with the body of a murdered boy in an all-girls boarding school in Dublin. A homicide detective, Stephen Moran is entirely out of his league, interrogating devious and cryptic teenage females and desperate to show his point. The story proceeds by exposing the chaotic personal lives of subjects, both officers and criminals. This one masterwork distinguishes out because of its unusual context and viewpoint.
6. “The Yellow Room” by Mary Roberts Rinehart
This #1 New York Times Best Seller is written by Mary Roberts Rinehart, a talented novelist labelled as “America’s Agatha Christie” and credited with creating the “Had-I-Known” style of mystery fiction.
Carol wants to make an effort and get a job after the war has ruined everything. Still, her mother suggested accompanying her to the family’s vacation house in Maine, where they found an empty mansion with no servants, no electricity, and a corpse in the linen closet. Carol had to strive to claim her honesty and protect the mother’s life before it was too late because police accused her of being the murderer. As darkness sets, she fears that a murderer is closer than she knows.
7. “DEATH IN THE AIR” by Kate Winkler
Death in the Air is a riveting medieval tale about a serial killer, a climate crisis, and a legendary city striving to restore its feet. Kate Winkler is a documentary journalist, news writer, and her work has been featured in the New York Times.
In 1952, when other tragedies such as pollution and serial killers struck, England was still recuperating from the ravages of the Second World War. With this deadly smog, the day turned to darkness, thieves prowled the city, and 12,000 civilians died due to the toxic atmosphere. Another serial killer, John Reginald Christie, who killed at least six women, was on the loose at the same dark time, leaving everyone with the fear of death. Author Dawson narrates the intertwined stories of these two serial killers and their long-lasting influence on postmodernity in a riveting manner.
8. “Trent’s Last Case” by E. C. Bentley
This twisted thriller story is ranked as one of the All-Time Top 100 crime novels, one of the three greatest mystery novels of all time, and one of the most influential detective books of all time. He published various non-fiction volumes, but TRENT’S LAST CASE, probably the first contemporary investigative thriller, is his most well-known work. It was selected three times for movies.
The plot circulates the American tycoon Sigsbee Manderson who was not very friendly and found dead with a bullet in the brain, wrist with marks, and clothes covered with bloodstains. Philip Trent, a cheery, witty homicide detective who is always up for a challenge, jumps into the Manderson case with all the zeal to find the truth.
9. “Snowblind” by Ragnar Jónasson
This gripping tale is a modern Iceland interpretation of an Agatha Christie thriller, as twisting as any racetrack and written with terrifying, exquisite elegance. The first book in the Dark Iceland series, Snowblind debuted number one on Amazon’s Kindle rankings immediately after its release. In addition, Snowblind was a best-selling book in France and was also the number one Australia’s Kindle bestseller.
Ari is drawn directly into the center of a society where he can’t trust anybody and dark secrets are lifestyle; when a young lady is found half-naked in the snowstorm, injured and dazed, and a highly regarded, the aged author stumbles to his death in the cinema. It gives intriguing views of darker, immensely more scary prospects than most typical murder mystery books.
10. “Come to harm” by Catriona McPherson
You have to read this murder mystery book right now. You have to figure out what’s going on with those women. I mean, how bad it can be, right? It escalates to incredible suspense that will keep you hooked and gasping till the end.
Keiko begins on a once-in-a-lifetime journey from Tokyo to a small Scottish hamlet where, from food to rain, almost nothing seems like home. And no one is friendly enough to want to stay for very long. Her apartment is located over a butcher’s store. And it’s the stern widow behind the store who has Keiko’s concerns. Her husband died in an unexplained manner. The more Keiko learns, the worse she fears until she’s unsure where her worries end and her true horrors commence.
11. “Murder on the Orient Express” by Agatha Christie
The count of murder mystery books cannot be completed without mentioning Agatha Christie’s work twice or thrice. Here is another extraordinary piece of hers which is also the most-read novel and a successful movie now. So, this is a sign to pick it up right now if you have not read it yet.
Orient Express, the opulent train that is unusually crowded at this time of year, stops on track by a pile of snow shortly after midnight. Samuel Edward Ratchett, a billionaire, is found murdered in his cabin the next day, stabbed several times, but his chamber’s door was locked from inside. The suspense is Who and How?
12. “The Cuckoo’s Calling” by Robert Galbraith
Robert Galbraith is a pseudonym J.K. Rowling famous for the fantastic harry potter series everyone loved while growing up. Rowling remarked of her youth, saying, “Hermione, a bookworm, know-it-all Harry Potter figure, is partially based on me.” The Cuckoo’s calling is another admirable piece of art that will keep you hooked.
Then John Bristow enters through the gate of the detective with a surprising narrative about someone who is just squeaking around as a private investigator after losing his leg in Afghanistan. The plot revolves around his sister, the famed fashionista Lula Landry, often called the Cuckoo, who sadly passed away previously. The authorities claimed that it was a suicide, but John isn’t convinced.
13. “The Girl on the Train” by Paula Hawkings
Paula’s thriller mystery novel “The Girl on the Train” was a New York Times bestseller for 13 weeks, which was also converted into a Netflix movie. She is renowned for her psychological and mystery thriller work, from which many of them are on their way.
“The Girl on the Train” refers to Rachel Watson, who takes the same commute for work every day. She invents tales for the people she sees, nicer narratives, devoid of separation and drunkenness. She mainly observed a perfect couple named Jess and Jason. Still, one day, she saw a terrific unfolded shocking secret revealing itself for a minute, making her actively participate in the tale she used to spy from a distance.
14. “A Study in Scarlet” by Arthur Conan Doyle
This murder mystery is also well-known as famous Sherlock Holmes #1 shows the first appearance of detectives when Dr Watson, who has recently moved back to London from the 2nd Afghan WarWar, due to his shoulder injury and is searching for a spot to reside and found flat 221B at Bakers Street where Sherlock already lives. When Watson first meets Sherlock, he discovers that he is a professional detective and becomes engrossed in the riddle of a new murder case being probed by Scottish. The murders have a mystery link to the rise of infamous Socialist parties in both the United Kingdom and the United States.
15. “In Cold Blood” by Truman Capote
This non-fictional story was written by American writer Truman Capote, the best-selling true crime novel of all time, and it disturbed its writer even after he published it. The actual account of the 1959 murders of the Clutter family in Kansas by a pair of drifters, and the ensuing apprehension, prosecution, and killing of the criminals, was told by Capote using literary methods. There was no apparent reason for the homicide, and there were very few hints. Nevertheless, the author creates riveting anticipation and extraordinary compassion as he reassembles the crime and the inquiry that led to the perpetrators’ capture, trial, and death.
What is the all-time best-selling mystery novel?
Every book has its unique story and plot according to the variety of tastes of readers. However, all murder mystery books are thrilling and gripping in their way with sensitive revealing secrets.
Q: What are the critical elements of a good murder mystery book?
The characters, the setting, the narrative, the issue, and the solution are the five key components that keep the tale moving along seamlessly.
Who is your favorite writer?
The work of Agatha Christie always fascinated me. The way she plots the story, the characters, and every detail related to the story is very captivating that will keep you hooked and in shock till the end.
What is the ideal structure of a mystery novel?
The crime that the tale revolves on, the inquiry in which the investigator attempts to solve the mystery, and when someone gets an unusual lead, it’s a plot twist. A breakthrough occurs when the investigator discovers the final element of mystery, and the conclusion is where the perpetrator is apprehended, and all open questions are answered.
Final Thoughts on Murder Mystery Books
The mystery genre is a subgenre of fiction that covers crimes such as homicide or kidnapping from its inception to its conclusion. For millennia, stories containing aspects of crime have existed longer than one can think. This genre is vast and never goes out of style and always comes with revolutionary ideas and comebacks. Thrillers cannot cease to have your heart pounding, forcing you to flip the pages at breakneck speed while simultaneously instilling a strangely pleasurable sense of foreboding about what’s next. I am a big fan of murder mystery books and crime novels and always find a way and an excellent book to satisfy my cravings for some thrill. If you haven’t read any of the books related to this genre, you should pick a good read from our top suggestions. If you are already a fan of fiction but missed some gripping stories, here are our top picks to spend your quality time on. Check out this list of the top thriller murder mystery books of all time if you’re seeking some close reads.