Murder Mysteries, detective stories, and so on. Any recommendations?

(55 Posts)

I have almost run out of authors to read. I have recently been reading the books by Donna Leon (featuring Commissario Brunetti) after reading a thread on here, but I can't find that thread and wonder if there are any other authors people might recommend?

Most of my previous reading has been about the older detectives, eg Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh (Inspector Alleyn) and so on. I also used to read Dell Shannon (Lt Luis Mendoza) when I could get hold of the books.

I'm not bothered whether the author writes contemporary or historical stories, or about location. It's just that I like a good story where I try to guess the ending.


inneedofrain Thu 16-May-13 22:00:37

Ok what about

Kathy reichs
The Alex cross books (authors name escapes me at the moment)

Both fab contempory physiological thriller and murder mystery authors

inneedofrain Thu 16-May-13 22:01:42

James Patterson just remembered!

LoganMummy Thu 16-May-13 22:03:49

Have you tried any Agatha Raisin books by MC Beaton? Slightly different take on detective/murder mystery but I loved them!

(Yes, I have terrible taste in literature.)

inneedofrain Thu 16-May-13 22:04:13

Karin slaughter as well brilliant books I have one complaint she has not written enough reading them in order is a good idea

MissFenella Thu 16-May-13 22:06:36

Oh No not Kathy Reichs - her smugness oozes off the page, I started to wish her harm.

J Kellerman
Dorothy L Sayers
Gladys Mitchell
Kinky Friedman
Ian Rankin

will think on

MissFenella Thu 16-May-13 22:07:14

Yy to Agatha Raisin

catballou Thu 16-May-13 22:07:15

Ruth Rendell is fantastic, I've read all her books and I wish she'd write more, until she does I have to re-read them. She also writes as Barbara Vine.

inneedofrain Thu 16-May-13 22:09:33


Thank you I have been trying to think of Ian rankin since I read the op I loved his books

I have tried Kathy Reichs, but her writing is not to my taste. My mum is going on about an author called Harlan whatever at present (she can't remember the surname). I might be able to snag the books off her when she's finished with them.

MissFenella Thu 16-May-13 22:15:37

The Morse books are really good too - Colin Dexter

Mockingcurl Thu 16-May-13 22:16:37

How about "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" by somebody or other Larson? Three books altogether. Very good.

Jo Nesbo
Henning Mankell

All good.

inneedofrain Thu 16-May-13 22:17:24

Reichs is a marmite author but I do agree she is snug and I can't chain read her books

Have you tried any of the Patterson or slaughter books I would recommend giving the a go have lent my to friends and not met anyone that can put them down

MrsBrownstone Thu 16-May-13 22:22:12

Richard Montinari is good, along the same lines as Karin Slaughter.

Leo35 Thu 16-May-13 22:24:21

Is it Harlan Coben? I've not read any of them, but I recognise the surname.

I always recommend Philip Kerr's PI Bernie Gunther. Great storytelling, possibly more thriller-ish. But not gentrified (set in Germany in WWII - so far from).

Carl Hiaison? I enjoyed Skinny Dip.
Sarah Paretsky

I was recommended Louise Levene (author) and have just started A Ghastly Business. Only just so far too early to say yay or nay.

Hope you find something good to read.

tigerdriverII Thu 16-May-13 22:26:21

The Erelundur books by (apologies for the spelling) Arnaldur indrisson are brilliant and compulsive.

Michael Ridpaths fire and ice books (both of these are set in Iceland).

Anne Cleeve, Shetland novels, brilliant.

Stephen Booth, Cooper and Fry series, set in the Peak District.

Patricia Wentworth and Georgette Heyer's mysteries might be worth a try if you like Christie et al. Have you read Dorothy L Sayers?

Andrea Camilleri (Inspector Montalbano) and Gianrico Carofiglio are very good Italian crime authors.

You've all given me quite a list of suggestions between you smile. I'm logging off now and heading for bed, but I have a bad cold and I'm feeling quite grotty right now.

But I'll be back tomorrow and will love to see what further ideas you give me. Thanks thanks

Chocaholics Thu 16-May-13 22:31:25

Agree the Phil Kerr books are very good as are Karin Slaughter. Maybe try:

Tess Gerritson
Peter May (Lewis books)
Peter Loveseys books with Peter Diamond are good
Deborah Crombies Duncan Kincaid/Gemma James are good too.

cookielove Thu 16-May-13 22:52:14

Lisa Gardener series is brillian

MiddleAgeMiddleEngland Fri 17-May-13 13:01:06

I'm not a big fan of detective stories, but dh is. He's enjoyed Josephine Tye's novels lately, and has read all Michael Innes' books.

I'm sure there's some more, I'll have a look at his bookshelf and report back!

Yes to Colin Dexter. I've met him a couple of times in real life, he's lovely smile

BornInACrossFireHurricane Fri 17-May-13 13:06:52

Linwood Barclay

weebarra Fri 17-May-13 13:07:42

Ann Cleeve
Peter May
The ones with the forensic archaelogist set in Norfolk...can't remember the author's name!

BornInACrossFireHurricane Fri 17-May-13 13:09:04

Also harlen coben- I love him but be careful as some of his early books have been re-released and nowhere near as good

Badvoc Fri 17-May-13 13:09:58

I'd you like historical murder mysteries to the Faldo series by Lindsay Davis.

How about Phryne Fisher investigates?

1920s Melbourne lady detective

sherbetpips Fri 17-May-13 13:12:55

Not harlen coben - every book is as follows: someone loved goes missing, nasty things start to happen, missing person is to blame, missing person dies, main character falls in love with missing persons other half. Worth reading one though I guess.
Dragon Tattoo series is amazing but heavy.
For a very very light detective read try the Ivy Malone series. Little old lady who due to being old and therefore 'invisible' to most people makes a pretty good detective - be warned though these are very light hearted read in a day sort of books but a nice break from the likes of Dragon Tatoo and Cross. Have fun

ProphetOfDoom Fri 17-May-13 13:15:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

weebarra Fri 17-May-13 13:59:41

yy to Lindsay Davis and Jasper Fforde!

Shanghaidiva Fri 17-May-13 14:06:39

Jo Nesbo
Dragon Tattoo series
Colin Dexter
Josephine Tey - lighter than the others
Henning Mankell
Sophie Hannah - psychological suspense
Ian Rankin

KittenofDoom Fri 17-May-13 17:30:22

Margaret Yorke. Never see her mentioned anywhere, but her novels are quite similar to Ruth Rendell's. There are some with a detective and other standalone psychological thrillers.

Em2121 Fri 17-May-13 17:32:02

These are great historical ones....

I vaguely remember reading some books about a Mrs Pargetter, written by Simon somebody, which weren't bad.

I do have some Cadfael (not bad) and I've read some ancient Egyptian themsed books by I think Paul Doherty, which also weren't bad.

monsterchild Fri 17-May-13 23:40:06

Michael Cruz Smith, great mood and I love the settings.

MiddleAgeMiddleEngland Sat 18-May-13 18:23:51

Ok, have just checked the shelves. Dh also likes Catriona McPherson's books, with the detective Dandy Gilver.

weebarra if you like detective books set in Norfolk, have you come across Chris Crowther's books? He's written four to date, set in the Norfolk Broads. Very realistic and enjoyable. He sells them locally in Norfolk and also through his website - google will find him!

cocolepew Sat 18-May-13 18:28:35

I love Harlan shock
Dennis LeHane
Robert Crais
Michael Connelly
Peter James
Peter Robinson
Sue Grafton
John Sandford 'Prey' series
Nelson De Mille
Chelsea Cain
Oliver Stark
Julianne Hoffman
PJ Tracey
Jonathan Kellerman
Faye Kellerman

MrsBungle Sat 18-May-13 18:35:29

My favourites are:

Karin slaughter
Patricia Cornwall (the earlier ones are the best)
Tess gerritson
I love tthe Jenny cooper series by m r hall

NigelMolesworth Sat 18-May-13 18:43:10

My all time favourite Reginald Hill for the Dalziel and Pascoe series and the Joe Sixsmith books
Alison Bruce - DC Goodhew
Anne Holt

I enjoy:
Shaming Flint - Inspector Singh mysteries
The early Patricia Cornwall ones
Colin Cotterill - the Coroners lunch series

GhoulWithADragonTattoo Sun 19-May-13 06:49:22

Can I add Stuart Pawson (DI Charlie Priest)? Set in modern day Yorkshire. Fab detective novels but not as well known as they should be.

VivaLeBeaver Sun 19-May-13 07:01:14

Peter James books are really good.

VivaLeBeaver Sun 19-May-13 07:03:11

Oh and also the Elly griffiths books are good, if slightly unbelievable.

Pleasenomorepeppa Sun 19-May-13 07:03:15

Tha Maisie Raine series by Jaqueline Winspear. They're wonderful smile.

MrsBodger Sun 19-May-13 07:15:48

Trying to think of some things other people haven't already suggested:

Father Brown stories by GK Chesterton -old fashioned, funny, short
The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco - a big fat book set in mediaeval Italy, but a great read, big big hit in its day
The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins - one of the earliest detective stories
Sherlock Holmes
Judge Dee mysteries by Robert Van Gulik - C8th Chinese detective

and for more recent books, I've just read Gillespie and I by Jane Harris, which I really really enjoyed. Also Capital by John Lanchester, which has quite a strong mystery element.

Will keep an eye on this thread, lots of great suggestions . . .

Val McDermott - The Tony Hill ones are very good. Also several of her stand alones are great too.

Second (third / fifth!!) James Patterson, his Womens Detective Club ones are a good read too and he always writes very short chapters so perfect for sneaking in a quick read!

cocolepew Sun 19-May-13 10:17:01

Greg Hurwirzt is good too.

deeplybaffled Tue 21-May-13 23:40:26

Definitely second Anne Perry, both the Thomas Pitt ones and the William monk ones. Elizabeth Peters' Amelia Peabody books are brilliant, as are Peter lovesey's Peter diamond books. Anthea Fraser should be better known imho. And I love most dick francis bookssmile

Karenblixen Mon 03-Jun-13 21:14:27

I am a massive fan of Donna Leon as well and have read all the Commissario Brunetti novels! Including the cookbook grin

What about Fruttero et Lucentini? Spooky mystery.

Henry James "The turn of the screw" I have been too frightened to read it so far

run4it Mon 03-Jun-13 21:22:55

I'd add kristina ohlsson and lee child to this list!

MikeLitoris Mon 03-Jun-13 21:31:31

Stuart Mcbride. The logan Mcray books. Some are a bit gruesome but they have sone funny bits too.

For something a bit different ty The Rivers of london books, Ben something or other. I didnt expect to like them but really got into them after just a few pages.

I also second karin slaughter, harlen coben and richard montinari. I loved the Kevin Byrne/Jessica Balzano books.

weebarra Tue 04-Jun-13 08:13:26

Rivers of London is Ben Aaronovitch. I really like them too.

MikeLitoris Tue 04-Jun-13 16:37:56

blush some terrible spelling there.

Thanks weebarra his name has been bugging me since last night to lazy to get my kindle and look for it

nothruroad Tue 04-Jun-13 20:18:43

I loved the Lewis trilogy by Peter May. I also really like Val McDermid but they are a bit more violent.

Louise1956 Tue 04-Jun-13 22:21:12

i like the Auguste Didier series by Amy Myers, they are set in late Victorian/ Edwardian England and are very amusing. Murder in Pug's Parlour, the first one, is excellent. auguste Didier is a chef who just wants to cook, but keeps getting involved in murders.

The sister Frevisee series by Margaret Frazer, set in 15th century England, is very good. The first one is the Novice's Tale. Each one is told from the point of view of Sister Frevisse and one other character.

the Hamish Macbeth series by M.C. beaton is quite fun, set in the Scottish highlands.

run4it Wed 05-Jun-13 20:20:09

Alex kava as well smile

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