List

2016 Staff Picks: Mystery and Suspense

Our readers advisory staff recommend some of their favorite mysteries that they've read in the past year. You'll find them on the first floor, separate from the general fiction, on the specially-labeled shelves.

  • The Family Plot

    2016 by Cherie Priest

    "This fresh take on the Gothic, haunted house story brims with clever devices and intriguing characters. Loved the setting--Chattanooga, Tennessee--and the house, the barn carriage house and yes a small, overgrown cemetery. Very atmospheric, strange and, for me, truly scary!"

    Recommended by Mary

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  • Closed Casket : the new Hercule Poirot mystery

    2016 by Sophie Hannah

    "Dubbed the new Hercule Poirot, Hannah always pleases me. The mystery is involved and the characters memorable."

    Recommended by Mary

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  • The Last One : a novel

    2016 by Alexandra Oliva

    "This one kind of messed with my head. While Zoo, the protagonist, is in the midst of a solo-challenge on a survivalist reality tv show competition, the world is hit by a devastating plague. What's real and what is just part of the competition all blends together in this fast-paced read."

    Recommended by Allyson

    "The Last One tells the story of twelve contestants who are sent to the wilderness in a Survivor-like reality show. But while they’re away, the world changes completely and what is real and what is not begins to blur. It’s post-apocalyptic literary fiction at its best. "

    Recommended by Leah

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  • Stalking Ground

    2016 by Margaret Mizushima

    "The second installment in the Timber Creek K-9 mystery series, the first is Killing Trail. I recommend both books to those inclined toward dogs and small town mysteries. There is solid plotting and character development, but mostly I liked learning about police dog work and training."

    Recommended by Sharon

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  • The silence of the sea

    2016 by Yrsa Sigurðardóttir.

    "A deserted yacht running on autopilot crashes into the dock of an Icelandic port, but where are its seven passengers and crew, including two children? Yrsa Sigurdardottir’s mystery was clearly influenced by Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None, yet she supplies a chilling tone of creeping menace all her own."

    Recommended by Steven

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  • The Strings of Murder

    2016 by Oscar De Muriel

    "This flawless debut mystery set in Victorian London and Edinburgh has it all: a Gothic atmosphere heavy with suggestions of the supernatural; a series of grisly murders leading to satisfying Grand Guignol climax; and a pair of comically mismatched detectives who give Felix Unger and Oscar Madison a run for the money."

    Recommended by Steven

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  • The Moai Island Puzzle

    2016 by Alice Arisugawa

    "Readers seeking well developed characters and fine prose will find nothing of the kind in this Japanese mystery. What they will get is a series of brain-racking riddles that will tax the intelligence of the most experienced puzzle solver."

    Recommended by Steven

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