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Unusual Suspects

20 of the Best Mystery Books You’ve Never Heard Of

Hello mystery fans! I suspect we’re going to be light on entertainment news closing out this year, but that won’t stop me from finding you interesting things to click. We’ve got roundups, adaptations, something to watch, a 2022 title for your radar, and awesome ebook deals.

From Book Riot and Around the Internet

A Personal Reckoning With True Crime as a Genre

Nusrah and Katie talk about mystery and suspense works by Native American authors on the latest Read Or Dead!

Liberty goes murdery and mystery in the latest All The Backlist!

Amanda and Jenn discuss thrillers and historical mysteries on Get Booked!

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What’s That? 20 of the Best Mystery Books You’ve Never Heard Of

What Are the Key Elements of a Murder Mystery?

Liberty and Vanessa talk new releases including Miss Moriarty, I Presume? (The Lady Sherlock Series) by Sherry Thomas on the latest All The Books!

Agatha Christie Dug for Clues for Real in Egypt

When You Can Finally Watch Daniel Craig’s Last James Bond Movie No Time To Die At Home

Lucy Hale Says AMC+’s ‘Ragdoll’ Shares Some DNA With ‘Killing Eve’

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Tracy Clark’s Chicago detective series starter Broken Places is being adapted!

Giveaway: Win a $100 Gift Card to ThriftBooks!

Giveaway: Enter to Win a $250 Gift Card to Barnes a Noble: November, 2021

Check out Book Riot’s new podcast, perfect for adaptation fans: Adaptation Nation

Watch Now

The Unlikely Murderer on Netflix: If you’re looking for a limited series (five episodes) that’s a true crime fictional dramatization, and want to armchair travel to Sweden check out the new release for The Unlikely Murderer. It’s based on a true unsolved 1986 murder of Sweden’s Prime Minister Olof Palme, and is adapted from Thomas Pettersson’s 2018 nonfiction book which was the result of his 30 year investigation: Den Osannolika Mördaren. Watch the trailer here.

Recent Interests That May Also Interest You + My Reading Life

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Reading: Clark and Division by Naomi Hirahara / Murder Most Actual by Alexis Hall

Streaming: Gentefied (Netflix) is finally back!

Laughing: brother what have they done to you

Helping: 8 Best Ways to Combat Food Insecurity in Your Community

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Upcoming: I have been treating myself, when I can, to 2022 galleys of books I am so excited for. I recently curled up with Secret Identity by Alex Segura, and I’m so glad that I did. This may be the only crime book I’ve ever hugged to my chest when I finished reading it. This is a murder-mystery with the feeling of noir mixed with the hopeful feeling of comics. But the heart of this book is a young woman trying to make it in a world deliberately not designed for her.

Cuban American Carmen Valdez moved from her home in Miami to NY in the 1970s to work in the comic book industry. Her goal is to write super hero comics like the ones she grew up loving. And so she’s an assistant at Triumph Comics, which is trying to stay afloat in a time before the comic industry we know now of blockbuster films. Between living in a hard city like NY with no one but a roommate to call a friend, working in a male dominated industry set to stay that way, not speaking to her parents back home, and a former lover showing up out of the blue, Carmen’s life is already complicated. Then she gets the chance to write that comic she’s dreamed of, with her name on it, only to have it dashed away and find the man who was helping her murdered. With a cop certain Carmen is lying about something–she is!–and her dream comic in someone else’s creative hands, she pushes through in the hopes of finding out who murdered her colleague and what is really happening to the comic industry around her.

Segura’s passion for the mystery genre and comic book industry shines through, and Carmen is a wonderful character trying her best to get through difficult situations with way more questions than answers with a deep down never-give-up spirit that always propels her forward. Bonus: pages from the fictional comic at the heart of the book are inserted throughout!

(TW memory of brief partner abuse/ alcoholism, not MC/ suicide off page, detail)

Kindle Deals

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Death Notice (Death Notices #1) by Zhou Haohui, Zac Haluza (Translator)

If you’re looking for a cat-and-mouse thriller, absolutely grab this one for $4.99! (Review)

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The Lost Man by Jane Harper

If you’re looking for a great standalone mystery that will make you hot no matter how cold your current weather is and have yet to read Jane Harper, absolutely pick this up for $2.99! (Review)

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Black Water Rising (Jay Porter Series Book 1) by Attica Locke

If you’ve yet to read Attica Locke, you should really resolve that! Here’s here first novel set in 1981 Houston, Texas, following lawyer Jay Porter for $4.99!

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No Exit by Taylor Adams

If you’re looking for a remote setting (snowed in rest stop of strangers) and an intense thriller, pick this up for $1.99! (Review)

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56 Days by Catherine Ryan Howard

I don’t know how long this will last but as of writing this, this page-turning murder mystery, is less than a dollar which is ridiculous! If you want an interesting setup and a twisty book, pick this up! (Review)


Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. See upcoming 2021 releases. Check out this Unusual Suspects Pinterest board and get Tailored Book Recommendations!

Until next time, keep investigating! In the meantime, come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canavés.

If a mystery fan forwarded this newsletter to you and you’d like your very own, you can sign up here.

Don’t forget you can get three free audiobooks at Audiobooks.com with a free trial!

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Unusual Suspects

A Nemesis Mystery & Revenge Thriller You Can’t Put Down

Hi mystery fans! I have two of my favorite reads of the year that were super entertaining and absorbing–probably a thing everyone could do with more of at the end of this year.

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Miss Moriarty, I Presume? (Lady Sherlock #6) by Sherry Thomas

Am I going to review every single Lady Sherlock book? Absolutely! I love this series so much–that same feeling you seek in watching things like Ted Lasso is how I feel every year with a new Lady Sherlock. It’s a delightful treat!

Do you need to start at the beginning of the series? I would definitely start with A Study in Scarlet Women because of all the character’s relationships and many are based on events from past books.

Just to give you an idea of how much I enjoy the humor and fun of these books: this time around we start with sexting but you know the very old school version of writing naughty things in letters that now sound PG. Charlotte Holmes is still keeping up the pretense that she works for Sherlock Holmes, her brother, and not that she is Sherlock Holmes. And who does she end up working for this time? None other than the big daddy of the nemesis Moriarty. Seems his daughter has found herself in a cult and he’s very worried about her and the money she’s giving them. So naturally Charlotte and Mrs. Watson travel to said cult to figure out what exactly is going on, while of course working for someone they can’t trust.

If you’re already a fan I highly recommend you catch-up with the series as you’ll once again be treated to a twisty tale that’s fun and humorous and exciting, plus it’s going to leave you with your mouth possibly hanging open (most certainly!).

If you’ve yet to discover Lady Sherlock, I highly recommend you get to know Holmes and Watson, the ladies who make a fantastic team filled with mystery solving and friendship.

Bonus: the audiobook narrator, Kate Reading, is the loveliest!

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The Collective by Alison Gaylin

I have been bamboozled quite a few times recently with books being labeled thrillers that are not actually thrillers. So color me the most page-turning happy reader to discover this was very much a thriller, and hands down one of my favorite books of the year.

It’s such a great blend of page-turner thriller while also being a smart exploration of grief and the cost of revenge. And a whole lot of trying to figure out what is happening!

Camille Gardner is still angry that her daughter’s accused killer has not faced any consequences. So you can imagine how hearing that he’s winning a humanitarian award would tip her over the edge. Her spiraling puts her on the radar of the collective–a group of women with a secret chat forum that can get you selected to enter a world of enacting justice for someone else in the group who is grieving. Soon Camille is thrown into this world, but at what cost? Who is orchestrating their brand of justice? And is Camille ready for real revenge beyond the fantasy of it?

It’s so good, and wow do I want to tell you about my very favorite thing about this book but its the ending so *zips lips*. Pick this up and clear your schedule, you’re not going to be able to put it down.

(TW panic attacks/ recounts past suicide attempt, detail/ mentions of suicides, detail/ brief ableist language/ date rape/ dead name used/ mentions rape cases, not graphic)

From The Book Riot Crime Vault

8 Books Like And Then There Were None


Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. See upcoming 2021 releases. Check out this Unusual Suspects Pinterest board and get Tailored Book Recommendations!

Until next time, keep investigating! In the meantime, come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canavés.

If a mystery fan forwarded this newsletter to you and you’d like your very own, you can sign up here.

Don’t forget you can get three free audiobooks at Audiobooks.com with a free trial!

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Unusual Suspects

Meet the Season’s Hottest Debut Mystery Authors

Hello mystery fans! Still a bit quiet on the entertainment front but I found some book lists, news, an old show that’s now new again to watch, and of course your ebook deals!

From Book Riot and Around the Internet

The Collective cover image

Liberty and Danika discuss the newest releases including The Collective by Alison Gaylin on the latest All The Books! (Must-read for revenge thriller fans!)

Readers’ Most Anticipated Books of November

Meet the Season’s Hottest Debut Mystery Authors

For Stacey Abrams, crime does pay – CBS is redeveloping thriller “Never Tell” into a series

Noir films you can’t miss

Reese’s Book Club had the cover reveal for Megan Miranda’s The Last To Vanish

9 authors pick their must-read fall thrillers

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The 13 Best New Mystery and Thriller Books of November 2021

The best recent thrillers – review roundup

A Murder Mystery That Refuses to Be Solved

Cover Reveal: The Agathas Kathleen Glasgow and Liz Lawson

Tamron Hall To Host Court TV True-Crime Series ‘Someone They Knew…With Tamron Hall’

Giveaway: Enter to Win a $250 Gift Card to Barnes a Noble

And if you’re a fan of adaptations Book Riot has a new podcast: Adaptation Nation, all about TV and film adaptations of your favorite books!

Watch Now

Dexter returns on Showtime: The original TV series, based on Jeff Lindsay‘s book series, ended eight years ago but in the world of TV everything comes back. So if you’ve missed the murderous antihero Dexter Morgan, he’s back on November 7th with Dexter: New Blood. Watch the trailer here and if you want to catch up on the original season’s, 1-8, watch here.

Recent Interests That May Also Interest You + My Reading Life

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Reading: Fate (Death Notices #2) by Zhou Haohui, Zac Haluza (Translator) / Not My Problem by Ciara Smyth

Streaming: Brett Goldstein (Roy Kent!) was on Brené Brown’s Unlocking Us podcast and if you need an absolutely delightful conversation run to it. / Maya and the Three on Netflix.

Laughing: Ears with a mind of their own.

Helping: Do a World of Good: 15 Best Places to Volunteer

Upcoming: For fans of Little Secrets and Jar of Hearts you can look forward to Jennifer Hillier’s next book in 2022: Things We Do In The Dark

Kindle Deals

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The Man in My Basement by Walter Mosley

If you’re looking for a crime novel that will making you say, “WTF?” grab this one for $1.99!

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Security by Gina Wohlsdorf

If you want a slasher film in book form with the mystery of who, pick up this fun book for $1.99!

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Four Rabbi Small Mysteries: Friday the Rabbi Slept Late, Saturday the Rabbi Went Hungry, Sunday the Rabbi Stayed Home, and Monday the Rabbi Took Off by Harry Kemelman

If you’re looking for a cozy series set in a Jewish community in the ‘60s with a Rabbi solving crimes, snatch this up for $2.99!

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No Mercy (Ellery Hathaway #2) by Joanna Schaffhausen

The sequel to The Vanishing Season is $2.99 and I highly recommend Schaffhausen’s procedurals for anyone who is a fan of shows like Bones and Castle.


Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. See upcoming 2021 releases. Check out this Unusual Suspects Pinterest board and get Tailored Book Recommendations!

Until next time, keep investigating! In the meantime, come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canavés.

If a mystery fan forwarded this newsletter to you and you’d like your very own, you can sign up here.

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Unusual Suspects

India: Historical Mysteries & True Crime

Hello mystery fans! I’ve read more than a few great books this year set in India which I wanted to share. I particularly love how layered each story is filled with plenty to learn and think about it. Plus, the fiction books are also very entertaining and there’s plenty of rabbit holes to fall down after looking for the real historical cases and people.

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The Shadows of Men (Sam Wyndham #5) by Abir Mukherjee

This is one of the few series that I wait in anticipation for and read as soon as I can get my hands on the newest release. Even if I was bored with historical mystery (I am not), I would still be reading this series. I think that while many series stick to keeping things familiar–which makes sense from the view of readers wanting to find comfort from what they have returned for–I love that this series has really allowed the characters to grow and evolve. For that reason I do recommend you start at the beginning with A Rising Man, although it isn’t a must in that you won’t be lost in this book since it’s all explained.

Set in 1920s Calcutta, during British rule, we get two points of view in alternating chapters. Both are officers with the Imperial Police Force but they are very different: Captain Sam Wyndham is a former Scotland Yard detective and Sergeant Surendranath Banerjee is one of the first Indians on the force. The book begins with Banerjee accused of murder. Raising the stakes even higher, he’s accused of the murder of a religious Hindu leader. Not only does he need to prove that he’s innocent to save his own life, but he needs to stop the ethnic violence that will come from a religious leader being murdered.

You get a whodunnit murder mystery–if not Banerjee, then who?–but also the contrasting personalities and POVs of Wyndham and Banerjee, along with the race against time based on the political situation and Banerjee being imprisoned for murder that makes this a huge page-turner to get lost in.

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The Good Girls: An Ordinary Killing by Sonia Faleiro

This is a thoughtful, compassionate look at a devastating case: the 2014 death of Padma and Lalli, two teen girls, who grew up in a village in western Uttar Pradesh. From their disappearance to the discovery of their bodies, everything in this case was mishandled.

Faleiro, who grew up in Delhi, thankfully isn’t interested in the gawking nor the “sport” that a big portion of true crime has become (or maybe always was). She brings Padma and Lalli to life, along with the town, and takes a look at the legal system in India (particularly laws and cases around rape), the caste systems, and the pressures of being a girl/woman in India. There are a lot of layers to this book, including the way this case was reported and discussed around the world, and it takes care to use the central case of this book to discuss a lot of things leaving readers with much to question and think on.

I went with the audiobook format, narrated by the author, and was very glad I made that selection.

(TW mentions gang rape case, details/ case is debated murder or suicide, detail/ brief discussion of infanticide/ <— those are the ones I made notes on, there was discussions about violent cases and histories.)

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The Bombay Prince (Perveen Mistry #3) by Sujata Massey

Here’s another of my favorite historical mystery series. It’s set in the same time period as Abir Mukherjee’s series but both feel very different from each other with Sujata Massey’s series focusing on the cases of Perveen Mistry, one of the first female solicitors in India. If you want to start at the beginning pick up The Widows of Malabar Hill for all the character’s personal life bits, but you won’t be lost starting with the third book.

Edward VIII, Prince of Wales is coming to visit Bombay to start a four-month tour and there is unrest. A young Parsi college student had gone to Perveen seeking guidance on a school matter in what they could force students to do and not do regarding protests. Now she’s dead, having fallen from a second floor during a procession for the Prince. The coincidence of her having just visited Perveen raises questions for Perveen in whether this was an accident or not and when the coroner says it was a murder, Perveen offers her service to the family.

I loved that as much as this is a murder mystery, we also get to see a lot of the legal side of cases during this time period, including a court inquest, a lot of different voices, and how Perveen always thinks about how her behavior can impact any female lawyers that are coming up behind her. I always look forward to what is in store for Perveen.

(TW questions if case can be suicide/ attempted forced undressing of woman/ brief mention of past domestic abuse, not detailed/ ableism)

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Murder in Old Bombay by Nev March

And in case you missed my review earlier this year and want a standalone historical mystery, here’s another case of a woman falling to her death and the question of whether it’s murder. (Review)

From the Book Riot Crime Vault

6 Murder Mysteries with Classical Music


Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. See upcoming 2021 releases. Check out this Unusual Suspects Pinterest board and get Tailored Book Recommendations!

Until next time, keep investigating! In the meantime, come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canavés.

If a mystery fan forwarded this newsletter to you and you’d like your very own, you can sign up here.

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Unusual Suspects

The Strange History of the Worst Sentence in English Literature

Hello mystery fans. It’s Friday so I have a roundup of mystery links and news, plus ebook deals–would have stuffed the newsletter with Halloween candy but *le sigh* the internet has its limits.

From Book Riot and Around the Internet

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Fondness and Fatalities: 8 Books That Mix Love With Murder

Nusrah and Katie talk about horror and suspense reads set in haunted houses just in time for Halloween on the latest Read or Dead!

What Murder Mysteries Get Wrong About The Law

Patricia and Liberty discuss recent releases including Grave Reservations by Cherie Priest and All Her Little Secrets by Wanda M. Morris on All The Books!

Thrills and Chills: A History of Fear Street

Elizabeth Holmes allegedly duped Betsy DeVos’ family out of $100 million

Velvet Was the Night Book Cover

CWoC Presents Edge of Your Seat Thrillers

Listen in as best-selling author Liane Moriarty discusses tennis, the writing process, and her new critically acclaimed mystery novel.

Robert Dugoni Signs Four-Book Deal with Thomas & Mercer

The Strange History of the Worst Sentence in English Literature

9 Shows Like Monk You Should Watch if You Miss Monk

How Amina Akhtar Changed Her Life at 40

Giveaway: Enter to Win a Fall New Release Stack!

Giveaway: Win an Audiobook Bundle!

Last chance for Book Riot’s limited-edition merch celebrating 10 years!

Recent Interests That May Also Interest You + My Reading Life

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Reading: Silent Parade by Keigo Higashino, Giles Murray (Translator) / The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood

Streaming: Final season of Insecure (HBO Max) / Hometown Cha-Cha-Cha (Netflix)

Laughing: the 80’s

Helping: No Hunger November and whether you’re in Virginia or not there’s a ton of ways you can help this weekend get out the vote before the November 2nd election.

Upcoming: Boyfriend Material and Rosaline Palmer Takes the Cake author Alexis Hall has written a mystery book, Murder Most Actual, coming in November!

Kindle Deals

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Dial A for Aunties by Jesse Q. Sutanto

A comedy of errors mystery meets a romance novel for $6.99! (Review)

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Know My Name by Chanel Miller

An excellent true crime memoir for $1.99 (Review)

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The Jigsaw Man (An Inspector Anjelica Henley Thriller Book 1) by Nadine Matheson

A British procedural about a detective tasked with figuring out how there are new murders if the serial killer is behind bars for $1.99! (Review)

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Leaving Atlanta by Tayari Jones

A literary historical novel set during the Atlanta Child Murders by an exceptional writer for 2.99! (Review)


Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. See upcoming 2021 releases. Check out this Unusual Suspects Pinterest board and get Tailored Book Recommendations!

Until next time, keep investigating! In the meantime, come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canavés.

If a mystery fan forwarded this newsletter to you and you’d like your very own, you can sign up here.

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Unusual Suspects

October Mystery & Thrillers To Know

Hello mystery fans! Got a bunch of new releases for all the reading tastes so I’m jumping right in.

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As the Wicked Watch (Jordan Manning #1) by Tamron Hall

If you’re looking for a deep dive into a journalist’s life that takes you through her work and personal life as she reports on what starts as a missing child case, grab this one. You get inside the life of a reporter, community activism, politics, and a case from beginning to end. (TW teen murder sexual assault not on page, recounted by medical examiner/ discussions of sexual assault cases; predators and groomers, not graphic/ brief suicide on page/ mentions past murders by domestic abuse partners)

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All Her Little Secrets by Wanda M. Morris

If you want a page-turner with corporate intrigue, family drama, past and present chapters, and a lawyer MC that becomes the main suspect, this was one of my rare reads this year that kept me up past my bedtime! (Review)

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Mango, Mambo, and Murder (A Caribbean Kitchen Mystery #1) by Raquel V. Reyes

If you like cozies, food, and want to start a brand new series, here’s your next delicious read, set in South Florida! Bonus: recipes! (Review)

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An Elderly Lady Must Not Be Crossed (Äldre dam #2) by Helene Tursten, Marlaine Delargy (Translator)

The sequel to An Elderly Lady is Up to No Good is finally here! I would recommend reading the first because it’s fun but also this one starts at the end of that one, and even though it’s stories of her past, it still tells you how the last one ended and what she’s doing now. Spoiler: still up to no good.

These Silent Woods

These Silent Woods by Kimi Cunningham Grant

I really liked Fallen Mountains and have been anticipating Kimi Cunningham Grant’s next novel. This is set in the Appalachian woods where a man and young girl live cut off from the world except for two people who know they are there. When one of them doesn’t show up for his yearly trip to bring them their food supply, things begin to unravel…

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In the Company of Witches (Evenfall Witches B&B #1) by Auralee Wallace

If you want a cozy mystery that feels written for fans of Practical Magic (widow, magic, witches, family) with a murder mystery, here you go. And perfect vibes for fall reading if you’re a mood reader.

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The Best American Mystery and Suspense 2021 edited by Steph Cha and Alafair Burke

A fantastic way to find great new mystery writers is through an anthology filled with short stories by awesome crime writers. Steph Cha has taken over the annual Best American Mystery Stories anthology and her first editor selected was Alafair Burke, who produced this collection. If you’re curious about the stories, Steph Cha posted a Twitter thread!

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The Savage Kind by John Copenhaver

Here’s a dark and twisty school mystery that is set in 1940s Washington, DC. Two teenage girls try to solve the murder of a classmate and determine why one of their teachers has dramatically changed. This sounds like a great read if you’re looking for a nod to the femme fatale noir classics.

The Corpse Flower

The Corpse Flower (Kaldan og Schäfer #1) by Anne Mette Hancock

If you’re a fan of Nordic noir and want the dark storytelling without graphic violence on the page, here’s one with a journalist lead! It’s especially for fans of the trope “a person on the run reaches out to a journalist who gets mixed into the murder plot.” (TW: discussions of sexual assault and child abuse)

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Blue Religion by Alverne Ball

If you’re looking for a procedural series set in Chicago, here’s the sequel to Only The Holy Remain. This time around the murder mystery Detective Frank Calhoun is working on is of a rookie police officer and a social worker.

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Grave Reservations by Cherie Priest

Mystery meets quirky, comedic, and paranormal: a travel agent who is psychic, and has a murdered fiancé, teams up with a Seattle PD detective to solve a cold case.

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Arya Winters and the Tiramisu of Death by Amita Murray

Let’s get into the whole “cozy mystery” subgenre for a second: it, like the romance genre, has rules–albeit very different ones. There is no sex, cursing, or graphic violence on page in a cozy mystery. While many readers of the subgenre are only looking for the “cozy” feeling and don’t necessarily care or realize the rules, they are still there. I say all this because I’ve seen this book labeled a cozy mystery even though it breaks the actual genre rules and I hate to see a book not find its intended audience–meaning I don’t want readers who read the genre for the very specific rules to then go tank the ratings because there is swearing and talk of sex. You do get the cozy vibes of baking and small town, without graphic violence– but toss in a lead who can be abrasive as she many times blurts out what she’s thinking before editing the thought, and has a business of making macabre desserts (yum!). Not only is she going to have to figure out who killed her ex-boyfriend’s uncle, but she may want to take care to not be on the list of next to die…

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Silverview by John le Carré

And I’ll end October with two blockbuster books. The first, on a sad note since this was posthumously published. It is of course about the spy world and ties the past to the present, but fans will also probably be thrilled to discover it’s set in an English seaside town and follows Julian Lawndsley who has just taken over a bookshop.

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State of Terror by Hillary Rodham Clinton, Louise Penny

Hillary Clinton teamed up with Louise Penny, her IRL friend and the author of the very popular mystery series Chief Inspector Armand Gamache to write a political thriller. I’m currently listening to the audiobook and am especially curious to see how much feels overlapped to her being the main character–I may have LOLed at her having made the character a widow.


Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. See upcoming 2021 releases. Check out this Unusual Suspects Pinterest board and get Tailored Book Recommendations!

Until next time, keep investigating! In the meantime, come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canavés.

If a mystery fan forwarded this newsletter to you and you’d like your very own, you can sign up here.

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Unusual Suspects

The Top Historical Mysteries of the Past Five Years

Hello mystery fans! This was one of those weeks where finding entertainment pieces to share was hard to come by, but I still found you clickable things, news, and great Kindle deals.

From Book Riot and Around the Internet

Take This Trick-or-Treating Quiz and We’ll Tell You What Spooky Book to Read

The Best YA Cozy Mysteries for Fall

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Read chapter 3 of Wanda M. Morris’ All Her Little Secrets in this exclusive excerpt

Thursday November 4th: Clare Mackintosh in conversation with Maxine Mei-Fung Chung

The 30 Most Popular True-Crime Books of the Past Five Years

Female Spanish thriller writer Carmen Mola revealed to be three men

21 Shows to Fill the Arconia-Size Hole in Your Heart After Only Murders in the Building Ends

Old-School Thrills: The Top Historical Mysteries of the Past Five Years

Attention Period Drama Lovers! More Murder, Mystery and Intrigue Is Coming Miss Scarlet and the Duke Season 2

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21 spooky, page-turning mystery books that will keep you guessing until the very end

Top 10 true crime novels

Hulu’s ‘Dopesick’ Is the Latest in a Series of Shows Tackling the Opioid Crisis

Giveaway: Win an Audiobook Bundle!

Giveaway: Enter to Win a Fall New Release Stack!

Celebrate Book Riot’s 10th birthday with limited edition Book Riot merch!

Recent Interests That May Also Interest You + My Reading Life

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Reading: The Book of Cold Cases by Simone St. James / They Can’t Take Your Name by Robert Justice / Where Tomorrows Aren’t Promised by Carmelo Anthony, D. Watkins

Streaming: The Addams Family (2019) and Britain’s Best Home Cook on Hulu.

Laughing: Batman?

Helping: Give students the gift of Hope in a Box

Upcoming: Rachel Howzell Hall announced her upcoming book starring a newspaper obituary writer!

Kindle Deals

TWs can be found in review links.

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Jar of Hearts by Jennifer Hillier

If you’re looking for a fictional serial killer page turner here’s one for $2.99! (Review)

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A Nearly Normal Family by M.T. Edvardsson, Rachel Willson-Broyles (Translation)

If you’re looking for a Scandinavian whydunnit with court room scenes here’s one for $2.99! (Review)

cover of Untamed Shore by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Untamed Shore by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

From the author of Mexican Gothic and Certain Dark Things, this slow-burn suspense and coming-of-age story set in Baja California, Mexico is on sale for $1.99 (Review)


Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. See upcoming 2021 releases. Check out this Unusual Suspects Pinterest board and get Tailored Book Recommendations!

Until next time, keep investigating! In the meantime, come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canavés.

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Unusual Suspects

All Aboard The Revenge Train

Hello mystery fans! Turns out that two of my recent page-turner reads were revenge thrillers, and since this isn’t therapy time, we’re not going to delve into what that may mean, but rather we’re going to talk about the books.

cover image of Never Saw Me Coming by Vera Kurian

Never Saw Me Coming by Vera Kurian

There’s a study being conducted on psychopaths at a university, by one of the professors. He believes much of what has been believed and the way society treats psychopaths is wrong. The students enrolled wear specific smart watches and keep a journal along with meeting with the professor. They do not know of any other members in the study, nor does the public know of this study.

We mainly get the point of view of three students in the study: Chloe, Charles, and Andre. Chloe is very clearly in the study and at this school for only one reason: she’s going to kill the student who assaulted her when she was a tween. That’s it, get out of her way. Charles is very much using the program to learn and adapt and trying to do well in school and maintain his relationship with his girlfriend. Andre is lying about being a psychopath–what started as kind of a joke snowballed and then he couldn’t turn down a full scholarship. While they all have their own individual issues, they all end up with one shared issue: someone is killing them off!

This worked for me on a lot of levels, starting with it being thoughtfully written and not another book filled with stereotypes. I really liked how different all the characters were and following their individual stories. As for the main reasons I couldn’t put this book down: I really needed to know if Chloe would succeed and also to find out who is behind the murders! I really look forward to what Kurian writes next.

(TW nonconsensual drugging/ past tween rape/ adult child abuse/ briefly recounts teacher student statutory relationship, not graphic/ webcam hacking and non-consensual distribution of sexual images/ past suicide briefly mentioned, detail)

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The Hollow Inside by Brooke Lauren Davis

I absolutely stayed up way past my bedtime reading this. I was grabbed from the very opening page as Phoenix, a seventeen-year-old, is sent to rob a home by her mother–I mean there is already so much to unpack! I will stop here for a second to say I knew NOTHING about this book when I started and loved watching how layer by layer everything past and present unfolds. Brooke Lauren Davis clearly understands that part of a good mystery/thriller can be in the way information is doled out to the reader. So with that said, I can’t remember what is revealed early vs later, so if you like the full ride, just go grab the book rather than reading below.

After that tense opening scene, you follow along as this mother duo team (Phoenix and Nina), who are living in a van and steal everything they need, make their way to a small town that Nina grew up in. They have one very clear mission: ruin the life of the man who ruined Nina’s life. It’s not going to be so easy though, because Ellis Bowman is literally the town hero. The head of the perfect and beloved family. He’s also a blockbuster author who keeps putting out memoir/self-help books based on how perfect his life is.

But Nina has a plan, and Phoenix is to carry it out. Except things immediately go wrong, and Phoenix ends up being taken in by the Bowman family. Maybe this new plan will work better? But while Bowman’s son is like a golden retriever in human form and ready to believe all of Phoenix’s lies and help her, his sister Melody is the complete opposite. Melody is certain Phoenix is there for the family’s recent misfortune and to sell information to the papers.

What starts as a straight revenge plan suddenly gets more complicated for Phoenix as she recognizes herself in Melody and starts to have difficult decisions to make in carrying out her mom’s plan.

I loved the way this unfolded, how you get to know past and present Nina, and Melody and Phoenix’s relationship. I also loved the way the points of view are shown: instead of the present story being from the revenge seekers POV, we only see in past chapters what happened to lead up to Nina wanting revenge and the rest of the book is narrated by Phoenix who doesn’t know she’s caught between it all until it’s too late.

(TW domestic abuse, not graphic nor on page but a “fleeing” scene/ statutory rape/ brief mention of past suicide, detail/ side character with terminal cancer)

From The Book Riot Crime Vault

7 Postmodern Murder Mysteries

Don’t forget to check out the limited edition Book Riot merch, celebrating our 10th birthday!


Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. See upcoming 2021 releases. Check out this Unusual Suspects Pinterest board and get Tailored Book Recommendations!

Until next time, keep investigating! In the meantime, come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canavés.

If a mystery fan forwarded this newsletter to you and you’d like your very own, you can sign up here.

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Unusual Suspects

Is Britney Spears Writing A Ghost Mystery?

Hi mystery fans! If you like to usher in Friday with all things mystery, I’ve got news, roundups, podcasts, adaptations, and ebook deals for you.

From Book Riot and Around The Internet

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Great Books Featuring Female Sleuths

Nusrah and Liberty talk about mystery releases you may have missed in 2020 and 2021 on the latest Read Or Dead!

Sue Grafton’s Alphabet Series Coming to TV, Contradicting Author’s Wishes

I Can’t Believe No One’s Dunit: A Cozy Mystery Setting Wishlist

9 of the Best LGBTQ Thrillers

The Frangipani Tree Mystery cover image

Singaporean writer Ovidia Yu’s historical murder mysteries headed for TV

Liberty and Vanessa talk new releases including The Corpse Flower by Anne Mette Hancock and The Best American Mystery and Suspense 2021 by Steph Cha and Alafair Burke on the latest All The Books!

Old-School Thrills: The Top Historical Mysteries of the Past Five Years

Exclusive extract: Silverview, the final novel by John le Carré

CWoC Presents Edge of Your Seat Thrillers – Virtual Event

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Barnes & Noble welcomes Emmy Award-Winning TV Host and Journalist Tamron Hall for a live, virtual discussion of AS THE WICKED WATCH!

Is Britney Spears writing a ghost mystery?

Netflix’s ‘You’ Scores Early Season 4 Renewal

Giveaway: Win an Audiobook Download of ALL HER LITTLE SECRETS by Wanda M. Morris!

Giveaway: Enter to Win a Waterproof Kindle Paperwhite! October, 2021

Book Riot is celebrating our 10th birthday with limited edition merch!

Watch Now

Dopesick on Hulu: The series is an adaptation of Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors, and the Drug Company that Addicted America by Beth Macy, and takes a deep look from different angels at the opioid crisis. It stars Michael Keaton, Rosario Dawson, and Peter Sarsgaard, and you can watch the trailer here.

Recent Interests That May Also Interest You + My Reading Life

Miss Moriarty I Presume cover image

Reading: Miss Moriarty, I Presume? (Lady Sherlock #6) by Sherry Thomas / State of Terror by Hillary Rodham Clinton, Louise Penny / People Love Dead Jews: Reports from a Haunted Present by Dara Horn

Streaming: Elvira: Mistress of the Dark on Hulu for my yearly rewatch (and her memoir, Yours Cruelly, Elvira, is top of my TBR).

Laughing: confused and concerned chiweenie

Helping: Sister District Project has many ways to help, including phone banking, to support “12 incredible candidates running for the House of Delegates in Virginia, and early voting has already begun.”

Upcoming: Cheryl A. Head announced her upcoming novel Time’s Undoing, a dual timeline mystery based on her family history.

Kindle Deals

A Knock At Midnight cover image

A Knock at Midnight: A Story of Hope, Justice, and Freedom by Brittany K. Barnett

Excellent memoir + true crime nonfiction that is a great comp for readers who liked Just Mercy. And it’s $4.99! (Review)

I'll Eat When I'm Dead cover image

I’ll Eat When I’m Dead by Barbara Bourland

This is “chick-lit” meets mystery and currently $1.99! (Review)


Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. See upcoming 2021 releases. Check out this Unusual Suspects Pinterest board and get Tailored Book Recommendations!

Until next time, keep investigating! In the meantime, come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canavés.

If a mystery fan forwarded this newsletter to you and you’d like your very own, you can sign up here.

Categories
Unusual Suspects

A New Page In Serial Killer Writing––Fiction and Nonfiction

Hello mystery fans! This week I wanted to highlight some novels and a true crime book that center a serial killer but that made an effort to move away from the genre’s problematic areas. In fiction it makes sense from a thriller perspective to set the mystery around a fictional serial killer: readers are invested in watching a fictional person chase after another fictional person with the very high stakes of having to stop them before they kill again. However true crime is problematic for a ton of reasons, from creating this idea that humans are born monsters we can’t do anything about to the way we treat victims and their loved ones while proclaiming how much we “love” true crime. Then there’s the issue of the cases people choose to focus on in the first place and what that says about which victims are worth of caring about.

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The Jigsaw Man (Inspector Anjelica Henley #1) by Nadine Matheson

Police procedural thrillers where a detective plays cat and mouse with a serial killer are historically a very white male centered category that then opened up mostly just enough to let in white women, making it rare to come across one written by and with a Black woman MC. If you like the fictional serial killer hunted by the messy-life detective who’s suddenly partnered with a rookie thing, here’s a great start to a new series set in London. Bonus Matheson is a criminal solicitor and teaches criminal law. (Review)

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Dead Dead Girls (Harlem Renaissance Mystery #1) by Nekesa Afia

Here’s a fictional serial killer story set during the Harlem Renaissance! And as much as some people love to argue that it is unrealistic for people of color and LGBTQ+ to have existed in history—as if they just magically appeared on earth the other day—they in fact did. Here we have the focus on victims who are given less focus, Black girls, and a young Black lesbian turned amateur sleuth because the police threaten her into helping them find a serial killer. (Review)

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Girl, 11 by Amy Suiter Clarke

This time we have the tropes of the fictional serial killer thrillers—true crime podcast and all—with a huge difference: the focus is on the victims and dragging the serial killer monster myth out into the bright daylight to show the reality. This one is definitely a page turner and for anyone who nodded along to Lindy West’s essay “Ted Bundy Was Not Charming–Are You High?” in The Witches Are Coming. (Review)

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Last Call: A True Story of Love, Lust, and Murder in Queer New York by Elon Green

Given the problematic obsession our society has with real serial killers, you can usually place your bet on the fact that if you’ve never heard of one, it’s because the victims were from a marginalized community. Elon Green does a fantastic job in focusing on the victims of a serial killer who killed gay men in New York during the ’80s and ’90s while also bringing the city to life, the LGBTQ+ community, and the reality of the discrimination they faced.

(TW it was hard to keep track of these because much is mentioned as part of history and cases but the main ones are homophobia/ alcoholism/ hate crimes / racism)

From The Book Riot Crime Vault

10 Mystery and Thriller Books Starring Older Women


Browse all the books recommended in Unusual Suspects previous newsletters on this shelf. See upcoming 2021 releases. Check out this Unusual Suspects Pinterest board and get Tailored Book Recommendations!

Until next time, keep investigating! In the meantime, come talk books with me on Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads, and Litsy–you can find me under Jamie Canavés.

If a mystery fan forwarded this newsletter to you and you’d like your very own, you can sign up here.