Detective and mystery stories

Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin

Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter by Tom Franklin

A nubile co-ed is missing from the same small, rural Mississippi town where another young woman had disappeared twenty-five years earlier—the mystery unsolved, her body never found. So begins Tom Franklin’s stellar novel, Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter.

Socially-awkward Larry Ott was 16 years old when Cindy Walker, both beautiful and popular, asked him out on a date. That momentous occasion—at least through Larry’s eyes—was the point when his young life began a downward slide from which it would not recover. Walker was never seen again. Although no evidence was ever found connecting him to the girl’s disappearance, the townspeople unanimously convicted Larry without the benefit of any trial. Shunned and taunted, he became the local pariah.

The Scent of Rain and Lightning by Nancy Pickard

The Scent of Rain and Lightning by Nancy Pickard

When Jodi Linder was three, the unbearable happened.  As told in Nancy Pickard's The Scent of Rain and Lightning, one Saturday night, her father was murdered and her mother disappeared.  Jodi grew up in the small town of Rose, Kansas, wrapped in the fierce protective circle of her three uncles, safe and cherished, but distrustful of happiness.

When Jodi Linder was 26, the unthinkable happened. Billy Crosby, the man convicted of killing her father, has been released from prison and returns to Rose, loudly protesting his innocence of the murder.  In a small town, it’s hard to keep your distance from anyone, and Jodi finds that she starts to run into Billy’s son Collin just about everywhere.  Collin is a lawyer who wants to live peacefully in Rose and wants to prove his father’s innocence.

Marjorie Sharmat the Magnificent

Libraries are chock full of Marjorie Sharmat’s books, especially the many tales of her young detective, Nate the Great.  Nate is indeed great—at solving mysteries--but only after a plate of pancakes! Nate the Great is the start of one of the most popular series ever written for beginning readers. These mysteries are also drily witty and have been enjoyed by kids and adults alike.

As a girl, Marjorie Weinman was rather shy. She enjoyed playing the piano, reading and drawing. But her ambitions were not so tame. When she grew up, she wanted to be a writer or a detective or a lion tamer! With a friend, she published The Snooper’s Gazette; filled with news they learned by spying on grown-ups!  She kept writing throughout her high school years, eventually getting published in school magazines and newspapers.

Long Gone by Alafair Burke

Long Gone by Alafair Burke

Alice Humphrey--daughter of a world famous film director and his movie star wife--has been unemployed for months yet refuses to ask her wealthy parents for help. When the ideal job as manager of a new NYC art gallery falls into her lap, Alice leaps at the opportunity…without considering the legitimacy of the offer. In Long Gone, by Alafair Burke, Alice has no clue her hasty decision will lead to a murder…or that she will be the main suspect!

At the opening of a new art exhibit, Alice meets Drew Campbell. Over the course of their conversation, Drew mentions he has an anonymous investor ready to open a gallery. He asks if Alice might be interested in managing the project. The only caveat is that the premiere show must feature the work of the investor’s boyfriend. The art in question turns out to be a series of hackneyed photographs which, from Alice’s perspective, display zero artistic merit. But she remains undaunted and looks forward to molding future shows.

Shadows on the Coast of Maine: An Antique Print Mystery

By Lea Wait

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"Maine. Antiques. August. Maggie Summer, owner of the antique print business Shadows, is thrilled when her old college roommate, Amy Douglas, invites -- almost begs -- her to come to the coast of Maine to see her new house. August is the perfect time for antiquing and, as it turns out, for murder. Amy and Drew Douglas have just bought a creaky but gorgeous eighteenth-century house in the little town of Madoc. Built in 1774, the house sits high on a hill overlooking the river. The house is great, but not the neighbors, who seem to think that the property should never have been put up for sale. Until now, it's always belonged to one formidable Maine family. Amy and Drew are New Yorkers. What are they doing here, where they don't belong? Hostile neighbors are just the start of their problems. Who is behind a series of strange fires and bizarre accidents? Where is the baby that Amy hears crying in the night, and why do she and Drew want so obsessively to have a child of their own? And what is the relationship between Drew and an attractive teenager named Crystal? As Maggie searches for answers, she runs into fellow antiques dealer Will Brewer, a man with whom she once hoped for a romantic future. But can she trust him now?"

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Murder in the Rough

By J. S. Borthwick

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During an especially cold, rainy May, three families move to the recently opened Ocean Tide community on the coast of Maine. Not long after their arrival, a body is found on the grounds of the community's golf course and the irrepressible Sarah Deane becomes entangled in the investigation.
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Agatha Christie's Murder with Mirrors

By Bette Davis, Helen Hayes

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This made for television movie, based on the Agatha Christie mystery They Do It with Mirrors, featured Helen Hayes, in her last film, as Miss Marple and Bette Davis as her friend Carrie. When Miss Marple investigates why her friend’s health is failing, a dead body shows up, and the two old friends need to solve the mystery quickly.

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And Then You Die: An Aurelio Zen mystery

By Michael Dibdin

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Okay, maybe not how we want to spend our vacation, but it's still entertaining. Aurelio Zen of Rome's elite Criminalpol is back, but nobody's supposed to know it. Following a bomb attack on his car, Zen tries to relax at a beach resort on the Tuscan coast, waiting to testify in an anti-Mafia trial. Soon he must rely on his survival skills as people start dropping dead.

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The Mozart Conspiracy

By Scott Mariani

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Enlisted by beautiful opera star Leigh Llewell to investigate her brother Oliver's mysterious death, SAS operative Ben Hope finds himself caught up in a centuries-old puzzle. The official line states that Oliver died while investigating Mozart's death, but the facts don't add up.

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Too Many Notes, Mr. Mozart

By Robert Barnard writing as Bernard Bastable

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History meets mystery in a novel about one pupil of Mozart's we have never heard of, the young Princess Victoria, whom the composer soon discovers has quite a talent for the keyboard and a knack for being a murder victim.

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