Who doesn’t like a good bit of mystery suspense? Here are 13 mystery books by diverse authors to add to your reading list this year.
Katrina has long managed to fool herself into thinking she is fine and living normally, despite her mental health issues. But after the coworker she was obsessed with dies by suicide, she is forced to face the fact that there is something very wrong with her life…and that she herself may be in danger.
Point Mettier, Alaska is about as isolated as a town can get. When Detective Cara Kennedy finds herself stranded there at about the same time as one of the locals finds severed body parts, she assigns herself to the case…whether the town's prickly residents want her to investigate or not.
Acclaimed crime fiction writer Walter Mosley returns this year, and so does his determined PI character, Joe King Oliver. In Every Man a King, our hero finds himself in the unlikely position of trying to exonerate a white nationalist accused of murder and espionage. Oliver doesn't like the case when he first takes it, and he likes it even less as he gets nearer to the truth.
Vera Wong is a perfectly ordinary (and definitely not lonely) tea shop owner who just so happens to stumble across a dead body in her shop one day. She takes it upon herself to solve the case, but will she end up catching the murderer or accidentally befriending them?
Part of Gigi Pandian's Secret Staircase Mystery series of suspense books, The Raven Thief has heroine Tempest helping to build a new home for a client eager to escape the shadow of her two-timing former husband. But when said husband turns up dead and Tempest's grandfather is the prime suspect, Tempest needs to solve the case, and fast.
In this unsettling domestic thriller, Ikemefuna comes all the way from Nigeria to Texas to marry the son of an old family friend. But her prospective in-laws are strange people with sinister ways, and Ikemefuna begins to wonder if she can ever escape with her autonomy and her dreams intact.
Titus Crown, the first Black sheriff of Charon County, faces an impossible situation: try to keep the peace in his small hometown while investigating a crime perpetrated against a Black man by his own deputies. All the Sinners Bleed is a tragic and timely story of the American South.
Pulitzer Prize–winning author Colson Whitehead now brings us Crook Manifesto, a tale of two Black men living in the decaying and volatile Harlem of the 1970s. One is a crook, the other is trying not to be, but they both do the best they can with what they have.
Jane is a struggling writer who hates her life and can't stop pining for Thalia, a fellow writer she met — and then lost track of under violent circumstances—years before. When she gets the chance to see Thalia again, Jane decides she will do whatever it takes to keep Thalia in her life, forever.
Montserrat has always been overlooked. She’s a talented sound editor, but she’s left out of the boys’ club running the film industry in ’90s Mexico City. And she’s all but invisible to her best friend, Tristán, a charming if faded soap opera star, though she’s been in love with him since childhood.
Then Tristán discovers his new neighbor is the cult horror director Abel Urueta, and the legendary auteur claims he can change their lives—even if his tale of a Nazi occultist imbuing magic into highly volatile silver nitrate stock sounds like sheer fantasy. The magic film was never finished, which is why, Urueta swears, his career vanished overnight. He is cursed.
Now the director wants Montserrat and Tristán to help him shoot the missing scene and lift the curse . . . but Montserrat soon notices a dark presence following her, and Tristán begins seeing the ghost of his ex-girlfriend.
As they work together to unravel the mystery of the film and the obscure occultist who once roamed their city, Montserrat and Tristán may find that sorcerers and magic are not only the stuff of movies.
As the daughter of a rancher in 1840s Mexico, Nena knows a thing or two about monsters—her home has long been threatened by tensions with Anglo settlers from the north. But something more sinister lurks near the ranch at night, something that drains men of their blood and leaves them for dead.
Something that once attacked Nena nine years ago.
Believing Nena dead, Néstor has been on the run from his grief ever since, moving from ranch to ranch working as a vaquero. But no amount of drink can dispel the night terrors of sharp teeth; no woman can erase his childhood sweetheart from his mind.
When the United States attacks Mexico in 1846, the two are brought abruptly together on the road to war: Nena as a curandera, a healer striving to prove her worth to her father so that he does not marry her off to a stranger, and Néstor as a member of the auxiliary cavalry of ranchers and vaqueros. But the shock of their reunion—and Nena’s rage at Néstor for seemingly abandoning her long ago—is quickly overshadowed by the appearance of a nightmare made flesh.
And unless Nena and Néstor work through their past and face the future together, neither will survive to see the dawn.
Colette “Coco” Weber has relocated to her Catalina Island home, where, twenty years before, she was the sole survivor of a deadly home invasion. All Coco wants is to see her aunt Gwen, get as far away from her ex as possible, and get back to her craft—writing obituaries. Thankfully, her college best friend, Maddy, owns the local paper and has a job sure to keep Coco busy, considering the number of elderly folks who are dying on the island.
But as Coco learns more about these deaths, she quickly realizes that the circumstances surrounding them are remarkably similar…and not natural. Then Coco receives a sinister threat in the mail: her own obituary.
As Coco begins to draw connections between a serial killer’s crimes and her own family tragedy, she fears that the secrets on Catalina Island might be too deep to survive. Because whoever is watching her is hell-bent on finally putting her past to rest.
Four years after her tumultuous senior year, Jade Daniels is released from prison right before Christmas when her conviction is overturned. But life beyond bars takes a dangerous turn as soon as she returns to Proofrock. Convicted Serial Killer, Dark Mill South, seeking revenge for thirty-eight Dakota men hanged in 1862, escapes from his prison transfer due to a blizzard, just outside of Proofrock, Idaho. Dark Mill South’s Reunion Tour began on December 12th, 2019, a Thursday. Thirty-six hours and twenty bodies later, on Friday the 13th, it would be over.
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Eileen Gonzalez is a freelance writer from Connecticut. She has a Master’s degree in communications and years of experience writing about pop culture. She contributes to Book Riot and Foreword Reviews, and she occasionally tweets at @eileen2thestars.