Travis McGee’s books introduce existentialism and pop culture to the mystery genre. Since Conan Doyle was a great storyteller, and so many of the Holmes stories are good, I thought it made sense to put the first book of the series on this list. Author Erik Larson delves into the real-life bizarre tale of a murderer on the loose during the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago and how it changed America forever. The book is a fictionalized version of a real case Voelker came across. I buy Tana French’s books in hardcover because I think someday they’ll be worth something on the Antiques Roadshow. This content is created and maintained by a third party, and imported onto this page to help users provide their email addresses. First, as you get into the late twentieth century you begin to see more and more mysteries that include a science/techno/paranormal angle. And then there’s a murder. It’s not lyrical prose with multi-layered metaphors. What’s important about this book is that as far as the mystery genre goes, we are introduced to the main character whose main job is just solving mysteries. Barack Obama put American Spy on his 2019 reading list, and for good reason. But I will admit that Tourist Season is the only mystery I’ve ever read that made me laugh out loud. Book List. He has written fiction, nonfiction, and some children’s books. The Detective is about a New York City detective, Joe Leland, who is asked to investigate the death of a man and figure out who killed him and why. This first book is about him trying to recover…well…I’m not even going to tell you. 1. MAY 26, 2020. And now we come to the second book on my list that you may not have heard of. And yet I consider it one of the best mysteries ever written. It’s tight, lean, well-plotted, and you’ll learn a lot about how museums operate. The Dry is her first novel. The Dublin Murder Squad Series by Tana French. In 2007, Crusie released one of her best stories to date named Agnes and the Hitman. You will snicker as you see the steamy and seamy underbelly of Florida and its corruption, which go together like peanut butter and jelly. As you might imagine, this is lighter fare, but super entertaining nonetheless. As always, read the book first. Box An appealing new heroine, a fast-moving plot, and a memorably nightmarish family make this one of Box’s best. There really is no better distraction than a good mystery novel. Umberto Eco, who died in 2016, was an academic with a broad publishing history. He wasn’t a genius or a professor or a prolific writer who penned a book per week. John Gregory Dunne was just never a household name. The Best True Crime Podcasts to Listen to Now. Sometimes spy novels can be considered a subgenre of mystery. There are two things I’d like to mention before you read this list. Nevertheless, they are seamlessly plotted with important minute details everywhere, so, read them slowly and enjoy the author’s way with language and dialogue. Le Carré’s career was working for British Intelligence, so my guess is that he knows a thing or two about the spy business. There is some humor in it, too. The Patience of Maigret is one of the later books in the series, but one of the best. Tinker, Tailor and the others in the trilogy are dense books. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy is a crossover mystery/spy novel. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith, 1998, 26. So, don’t let that stop you from reading it. The Deep Blue Good-By is the first of the Travis McGee series, and it’s listed here because it’s also one of the best. I have a friend who calls me regularly on the phone and starts the conversation with, “Is that you, Clarice?”. 2. I put the blame for this squarely on the shoulders of the publishers, who gave the book a terrible title. The book is the beginning of a series with the main character, Aaron Falk. He showed the police work that is boring, often thankless, difficult and life-consuming and work that wasn’t so much thrilling as emotionally draining. It’s a long book with an extremely complicated plot, a surprise ending, it’s plausible, and it’s just a great story. He was not a sleepyhead. Maybe others might surprise you. In this day and age of eBooks, most of the books I read now are downloaded onto my tablet. It is written from the perspective of a former spy trying to explain to her sons why she is now on the run for her actions during the Cold War and what it means to be a "good American.". ALA Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults. The third book in the Dave Robicheaux series, which won an Edgar Award. Double Whammy is a type of fishing lure, and the book is about a private investigator who is investigating a celebrity bass fisherman to see if he is cheating on the fishing tournament circuit. If you like this book, there are only another hundred or so waiting for you to read. A Study in Scarlet is a murder and revenge story told in the third-person point of view, a first in mysteries. It’s a great movie, and you should try to see it after you read the book. On every page. As far as writing mysteries, this book was his one-hit wonder. I chose The Midnight Line, one of the more recent books, for my list because I think it’s a step above the others. Some have found Hillerman’s books preachy, and he was accused more than once of getting a few cultural facts wrong. This is the first appearance of Pendergast, who is seen again in several later Preston and Child books. The Best Detective Novel Series 7. We may earn commission on some of the items you choose to buy. 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