An extensive (and always growing) list of mystery novels from around the world.
- Have you read all of these?
- Which are on your ‘to read’ list?
- Which are the best?
- The worst?
- Any we should add?
This list is frequently updated whenever we have time or read new novels. If you have any recommendations (from any country) please share in the comments!
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|2||Mystery is Secondary Theme|
|A||Anime / Manga|
|C||Crime / Police Procedural|
|F||Framed (Innocent person is framed and must clear his/her name)|
|LAW||Legal (Judges, Attorneys, Prosecutors)|
|M||Medical / Autopsy / Pathology|
|ND||Nancy Drew (aka Nosy Detectives – amateurs who have gotten involved in a crime)|
|N/E||No Known English Translation|
|P||Significant Criminal Psychology|
|R||Reality TV / Documentaries|
|S||Supernatural (Ghosts, Vampires, Werewolves)|
|SF||Sci-Fi (Time Travel, Robots, Futuristic)|
|T||Treasure Hunt (The Search for Lost Treasures, Tomb Raiding, Pirate Treasures)|
|U||Unaired (Coming Soon)|
|V||Vengeance / Revenge|
|W||Wuxia & Asian Fantasy (Dragons, Deities, Etc.)|
|Countries:||Australia, China (Mainland), Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Russia, United States|
*Some works may deal with difficult / adult subjects or may be graphic. You should read online reviews and read at your own discretion.
Incorporation into this list does not reflect the views or opinions of The Suitcase Detective; it’s not a recommendation or endorsement.
Feel free to search the table according to:
- Book Name
- Country Setting
- Genre (e.g., (YA)) – use parentheses
We have sorted works into “Fiction” and “Non-Fiction” categories, so choose your own poison!
If there is a series involved, we only link directly to the first novel in the series. You can often find a link under “Series” to a full collection.
"The Devotion of Suspect X"
|Keigo Higashino||When the body turns up and is identified, Detective Kusanagi draws the case and Yasuko comes under suspicion. Kusanagi is unable to find any obvious holes in Yasuko's manufactured alibi and yet is still sure that there's something wrong. Kusanagi brings in Dr. Manabu Yukawa, a physicist and college friend who frequently consults with the police. Yukawa, known to the police by the nickname Professor Galileo, went to college with Ishigami. After meeting up with him again, Yukawa is convinced that Ishigami had something to do with the murder. What ensues is a high level battle of wits, as Ishigami tries to protect Yasuko by outmaneuvering and outthinking Yukawa, who faces his most clever and determined opponent yet.||(C), (D) | Japan||Detective Galileo Series|
Death of a Red Heroine
|Qiu Xiaolong||A young “national model worker,” renowned for her adherence to the principles of the Communist Party, turns up dead in a Shanghai canal. As Inspector Chen Cao of the Shanghai Special Cases Bureau struggles to trace the hidden threads of her past, he finds himself challenging the very political forces that have guided his life since birth. Chen must tiptoe around his superiors if he wants to get to the bottom of this crime, and risk his career—perhaps even his life—to see justice done.||(C) | China (Mainland)||Inspector Chen Investigations|
|Tom Robb Smith||In a country ruled by fear, no one is innocent.|
Stalin's Soviet Union is an official paradise, where citizens live free from crime and fear only one thing: the all-powerful state. Defending this system is idealistic security officer Leo Demidov, a war hero who believes in the iron fist of the law. But when a murderer starts to kill at will and Leo dares to investigate, the State's obedient servant finds himself demoted and exiled. Now, with only his wife at his side, Leo must fight to uncover shocking truths about a killer-and a country where "crime" doesn't exist.
|(C) | Russia||Child 44 Trilogy|
|Kerry Greenwood||It's the roaring 1920s when the honorable and risque Phryne Fisher decides it might be rather amusing to try her hand at being a lady detective in Melbourne, Australia. Soon she finds herself caught up in poisoned wives, cocaine smuggling rings, corrupt cops, and communism—not to mention erotic encounters with the beautiful Russian dancer, Sasha de Lisse.||(D), (ND) | Australia||Phryne Fisher Investigates|
He Who Kills The Dragon
|Lief GW Persson||When a newspaper delivery boy finds a 68 year-old alcoholic lying dead in his apartment--beaten with a saucepan lid and hammer, and then strangled--everyone expects an open-and-shut murder case, everyone that is but Hawaiian-shirt clad Detective Bäckström who's been assigned to lead the investigation team giving his irrepressible mix of luck and laziness a chance to save the day.||(C) | Norway||Backstrom|
Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
|Stieg Larsson||Harriet Vanger, a scion of one of Sweden's wealthiest families disappeared over forty years ago. All these years later, her aged uncle continues to seek the truth. He hires Mikael Blomkvist, a crusading journalist recently trapped by a libel conviction, to investigate. He is aided by the pierced and tattooed punk prodigy Lisbeth Salander. Together they tap into a vein of unfathomable iniquity and astonishing corruption.||(D), (J) | Sweden||Millennium|
The Unexpected Mrs. Pollifax
|Dorothy Gilman||Mrs. Emily Pollifax of New Brunswick, New Jersey, was a widow with grown, married children. She was tired of attending her Garden Club meetings. She wanted to do something good for her country. So, naturally, she became a CIA agent. Her first assignment in Mexico City doesn’t sound dangerous at first, but then, as often happens, something goes wrong. Now our dear Mrs. Pollifax finds herself embroiled in quite a hot Cold War—and her country’s enemies find themselves entangled with one unbelievably feisty lady.||(C), (ND) | International||Mrs. Pollifax|
|Malice: A Mystery||Keigo Higashino||Police Detective Kyoichiro Kaga recognized an old colleague, Nonoguchi, during his recent case. Hidaka and Nonoguchi were best friends and writers, but Hidaka has turned up dead. Kaga's investigation uncovers evidence that shows that the two writers' relationship was very different than the two claimed. Nonoguchi confesses to the murder, but that's only the beginning of the story.||(C) | Japan||Kyochiro Kaga|
|Night Beyond a Tricornered Window||Tomoko Yamashita||Shy bookstore clerk Kosuke Mikado has the ability to see ghosts and spirits, an ability he wishes he didn’t have, since what he sees usually terrifies him. Rihito Hiyakawa, an exorcist whose supernatural powers are as strong as his social graces are weak, doesn’t seem to fear anything, mortal or otherwise. When this odd couple gets together to solve the bizarre cases that come their way, their work methods may not be entirely safe for work!||(D), (L), (S) | Japan||Night Beyond a Tricornered Window (Manga)|
|Counterfeit Conspiracies||Ritter Ames||Quick wits and connections have gained Laurel Beacham a reputation as one of the world's premier art recovery experts. The police may catch the thief, but she reclaims the missing masterpieces.|
The latest assignment, however, may be her undoing. Using every ounce of luck and larceny she possesses, Laurel must locate a priceless art icon and rescue a co-worker (and ex-lover) from a master criminal, all the while matching wits with a charming new nemesis. Unfortunately, he seems to know where the bodies are buried--and she prefers hers isn't next.
|(D) | International||Bodies of Art Mysteries|
|Organized for Murder||Ritter Ames||When Kate opened her organizing business and immediately gained a rich client, she thought everything was finally stacked in their favor.|
Until her client is found dead. Then the police take a hard look in her direction. Things only get worse when forensics evidence finds her fingerprints on the murder weapon--and suddenly Kate shoots to the top of the list as prime suspect.
The stopwatch is ticking for Kate to prove she had nothing to do with the murder. She must trust her methodical skills and expert eye to sort out who is trying to frame her and uncover the real killer before she's organized right into a jail cell.
|(FA), (ND) | United States||Organized Mysteries|
|Frugal Lissa Finds a Body||Ritter Ames||Lissa Eller looks for ways to save money. She never wanted to find a dead body.|
Especially after she and the victim argued in public the previous evening. And she kind of threatened him (all a big misunderstanding – really). When will she learn to keep her big mouth shut?
Now, she's prime suspect in the guy’s murder. Worse, the detective in charge of the case is someone Lissa made fun of in high school—because he made fun of her—and he holds more leverage than just the threat of getting her sent to detention.
She should never have moved back home.
|(FA), (ND) | United States||Frugal Lissa Mysteries|
|The Case at Barton Manor||Emily Queen||Rosemary Lillywhite only wanted to be left alone to mourn her husband in peace, but when a desperate woman knocks on the door of her dead husband’s investigative office, she’s forced to make a choice: come out of hiding or turn Grace Barton away.|
Working cases with Andrew had been fulfilling, but she couldn't solve this case by herself—or could she? When Rosemary discovers that Grace is from the same village where her family lives, and that they’re all invited to a party at Barton Manor, she knows it’s a proposition she can’t refuse.
With her best friend, bright young thing Vera Blackburn at her side, Rosemary heads to the country and finds herself embroiled in a murder investigation.
The plot thickens when she’s forced to defend her brother Frederick’s good name, and is confronted with romantic feelings towards handsome CID detective and old friend Max Whittington. Will Rosemary solve the crime before the murderer strikes again?
|(D) | Britain||Mrs. Lillywhite Investigates|
|Murder in Dragon City||Qin Ming||When they find the extra finger, forensic scientist Qin Ming and his team are stunned. How could there be eleven fingers but only one corpse?|
Though Qin Ming is no stranger to tough cases, he has never encountered one quite like this. With no answers and no leads, Qin Ming must turn his attention to the many other homicides waiting to be solved. His investigations take him to back-alley neighborhoods, the remote countryside, and even the expansive homes of the rich and elite. But now it seems that every case in Dragon City contains a misplaced body part. Is it a coincidence or a sick joke, or is the killer trying to send Qin Ming a message? As Qin Ming and the police force work to unravel each murder, a killer zeros in on him. Can Qin Ming track down the killer before he becomes the next victim?
|(C), (M) | China (Mainland)||Dr. Qin Medical Examiner|
|The Shape of Water||Andrea Camilleri||Silvio Lupanello, a big-shot in Vigàta, is found dead in his car with his pants around his knees. The car happens to be parked in a part of town used by prostitutes and drug dealers, and as the news of his death spreads, the rumors begin. Enter Inspector Salvo Montalbano, Vigàta's most respected detective. With his characteristic mix of humor, cynicism, compassion, and love of good food, Montalbano battles against the powerful and corrupt who are determined to block his path to the real killer. ||(C) | Italy||Inspector Montalbano Mysteries|
|The Case of the Girl Who Took Her Shampoo||Greg Rucka (Author) and Matthew Southworth (Illustrator)||Dex Parios, a strong, assertive and sharp-witted Army veteran has a complicated love life, gambling debt and a brother to take care of in Portland, Oregon. Her military intelligence skills make her a great private investigator, but her brash, unapologetic style puts her in a league of her own, landing her in the firing line of hardcore criminals while not quite in alliance with the rules and objectives of the local police.||(D), (ND) | United States||Stumptown|
|The Complete Adventures of Feluda||Sityajit Ray||In his escapades, the professional sleuth Pradosh C. Mitter (Feluda) is accompanied by his cousin Topshe and the bumbling crime writer Lalmohan Ganguly (Jatayu). From Jaisalmer to Simla, from the Ellora Caves to Varanasi, the trio traverse fascinating locales to unravel one devious crime after another.||(D) | India||The Complete Adventures of Feluda|
|Byomkesh Bakshi Mysteries (The Rhythm of Riddles)||Saradindu Bandyopadhyays||From a murder in a boarding house with too many suspects, to a mystery with a supernatural twist, and then busting a black marketeering ring in rural Bengal, the stories in this volume take detective Byomkesh Bakshi to different locales on his quest for truth, and bring out the ingenuity and astuteness of this super sleuth.||(D) | India|
|Allmen and the Dragonflies||Martin Suter||A thrilling art heist escapade infused with European high culture and luxury that doesn't shy away from the darker side of human nature. This is the first of a series of humorous, fast-paced detective novels devoted to a memorable gentleman thief who, with his trusted sidekick Carlos, creates an investigative firm to recover missing precious objects.||(ND) | Switzerland||Allmen|
Death at La Fenice
|Donna Leon||During intermission at the famed La Fenice opera house in Venice, Italy, a notoriously difficult and widely disliked German conductor is poisoned—and suspects abound. Guido Brunetti, a native Venetian, sets out to unravel the mystery behind the high-profile murder. To do so, he calls on his knowledge of Venice, its culture, and its dirty politics. Along the way, he finds the crime may have roots going back decades—and that revenge, corruption, and even Italian cuisine may play a role.||(C) | Italy||Commissario Brunetti|
|Mari Jungstedt||*German Author / Sweden Setting||(C) | Sweden||Anders Knutas|
Death in Brittany: A Mystery
|Jean-Luc Bannalec||*German Author / *France Setting|
Commissaire Georges Dupin, a cantankerous, Parisian-born caffeine junkie recently relocated from the glamour of Paris to the remote (if picturesque) Breton coast, is dragged from his morning croissant and coffee to the scene of a curious murder. The local village of Pont-Aven—a sleepy community by the sea where everyone knows one other and nothing much seems to happen—is in shock. The legendary ninety-one-year-old hotelier Pierre-Louis Pennec, owner of the Central Hotel, has been found dead.
|(C) | France||Brittany Mystery Series|
|Qian Yu Zhi Cheng||Donglin City faces an increasingly prolific serial killer leaving a trail of carved up victims in his wake. Strangely, the one similarity linking the victims is that they all possessed both male and female chromosomes simultaneously. Seeking answers, rookie policeman Ren Fei approaches a famous defense attorney and criminal psychologist Liang Yandong for answers. Liang offers his help with a price - he is sitting in jail falsely accused of raping and killing a girl. Now he wants answers. Can justice be found?||(C), (N/E), (P) | China (Mainland)|
|Snow White Must Die||Nele Neuhaus||On a September evening eleven years ago, two seventeen-year-old girls vanished from the village without a trace. In a trial based only on circumstantial evidence, twenty-year-old Tobias Sartorius was sentenced to ten years in prison. Police Detectives Bodenstein and Kirchhoff discover that Tobias has now returned to his home town. When another young girl disappears, the events of the past seem to be repeating themselves in a disastrous manner. The investigation turns into a race against time, because for the villagers it is soon clear who the perpetrator is ― and this time they are determined to take matters into their own hands.||(C) | Germany||Ein Bodenstein-Kirchhoff-Krimi (German)
|A Clubbable Woman||Reginald Hill||Mary Connon froze out her husband, Sam, long ago. She likes the attention of other men—like the fellow members of Sam’s rugby club. Naturally, when she’s found dead in her sitting room with a hole in her head, Sam is a suspect. If only he hadn’t suffered a dizzying scrum injury that’s left everything a blur. He isn’t sure that he kill her. But Det. Inspector Andrew Dalziel and his partner, Peter Pascoe, are looking outside the unhappy home. Because it seems everyone within spitting distance of the suburban femme fatale—from prying neighbors to spurned lovers to jealous wives—wanted Mary dead. As the field of play expands, so do the motives||(D) | Britain||Dalziel & Pascoe Mysteries|
|Death at Chateau Bremont||ML Longworth||When local nobleman Étienne de Bremont falls to his death from the family château, it sets the historic town of Aix-en-Provence abuzz with rumors. Antoine Verlaque, the charming chief magistrate of Aix, suspects foul play, and when he discovers that Bremont had been a close friend of Marine Bonnet, his on-again off-again girlfriend, Verlaque must turn to her for help.||(C) | Canada||Verlaque and Bonnet Provencal Mystery|
|Louise Penny||Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Surêté du Québec and his team of investigators are called in to the scene of a suspicious death in a rural village south of Montreal. Jane Neal, a local fixture in the tiny hamlet of Three Pines, just north of the U.S. border, has been found dead in the woods. The locals are certain it's a tragic hunting accident and nothing more, but Gamache smells something foul in these remote woods, and is soon certain that Jane Neal died at the hands of someone much more sinister than a careless bowhunter.||(C) | Canada||Chief Inspector Gamache Mysteries|
The Enigma of Room 622
|Joël Dicker||A writer named Joël, Switzerland’s most prominent novelist, flees to the Hôtel de Verbier, a luxury resort in the Swiss Alps. Disheartened over a recent breakup and his longtime publisher’s death, Joël hopes to rest. However, his plans quickly go awry. It all starts with a seemingly innocuous detail: at the Verbier, there is no room 622. |
Before long, Joël and fellow guest Scarlett uncover a long-unsolved murder that transpired in the hotel's room 622. The attendant circumstances: the succession of Switzerland’s largest private bank, a mysterious counterintelligence operation called P-30, and a most disreputable sabotage of hotel hospitality. A European phenomenon, The Enigma of Room 622 is a matryoshka doll of intrigue–as precise as a Swiss watch–and Dicker’s most diabolically addictive thriller yet.
|(ND) | Switzerland|
The Keeper of Lost Causes
|Jussi Adler-Olsen||Carl Mørck used to be one of Denmark’s best homicide detectives. Then a hail of bullets destroyed the lives of two fellow cops, and Carl—who didn’t draw his weapon—blames himself. So a promotion is the last thing he expects. But Department Q is a department of one, and Carl’s got only a stack of cold cases for company. One file keeps nagging at him: a liberal politician vanished five years earlier and is presumed dead. But she isn’t dead...yet.||(C) | Denmark||Department Q|
|Scott Hunter||DCI Brendan Moran, world-weary veteran of 1970s Ireland, is recuperating from a near fatal car crash when a murder is reported at Charnford Abbey. The abbot and his monks are strangely uncooperative, but when a visitor from the Vatican arrives and an ancient relic goes missing the truth behind Charnford’s pact of silence threatens to expose not only the abbey’s haunted secrets but also the spirits of Moran’s own troubled past . . .||(C) | Ireland, Britain||DCI Brendan Moran|
Non-Fiction & True Crime
If there is a series involved, we only link directly to the first work in the series. You can often find a link under “Series” to a full collection.
|Gone Missing: A Guide for Those Left Behind||Douglas Coop||Thousands of people go missing each year, exceeding the combined number of traffic fatalities, suicides and all the injuries requiring hospitalization. In addition, each person reported missing affects at least twelve others emotionally or financially; immobilizing families as there can be no closure until the fate of their loved one is resolved.|
Based on decades of fieldwork, Gone Missing discusses the role of police and search agencies, how to deal with the media and the many organizations available to give support and assistance.
The book gives a detailed account of the emotional trauma and grieving suffered by those left behind, the professional help available, and explains the role of counselling. It examines why people go missing, and deals with their return or the finding of remains.
|10 Frightening True Crime Cases of Unidentified Serial Killers (The Ones You've Never Heard of)||D.R. Werner||These are the killers who will walk away from a murder scene completely unphased by what they've done. The ones who pitilessly dump or hide bodies and then go about their day as usual. Those who go undetected.||Unsolved Serial Killers|
|Our Little Secret: The True Story of a Teenage Killer and the Silence of a Small New England Town||Kevin Flynn and Rebecca Lavoie||For twenty years Daniel Paquette's murder in New Hampshire went unsolved. It remained a secret between two high school friends until Eric Windhurst's arrest in 2005. What was revealed was a crime born of adolescent passion between Eric and Daniel's stepdaughter, Melanie- redefining the meaning of loyalty, justice, and revenge.|
|The Iowa Murders: A Shocking True Crime Story||Rod Kackley||Two young women who had everything to live for, were killed by two men with nothing to lose. Completely random attacks. Neither case had anything else in common except they both shocked the nation and even the world.|
What’s worse, being murdered by a loved one or a stranger who jumps out of the bushes when you are most vulnerable?
Previously published as We’ll Find You and Let’s Do Murder, The Iowa Murders tells the shocking true crime stories of the senseless deaths of Mollie Tibbetts and Celia Barquin Arozamena.
|Blood & Ink: The Scandalous Jazz Age Double Murder That Hooked America on True Crime||Joe Pompeo||On September 16, 1922, the bodies of Reverend Edward Hall and Eleanor Mills were found beneath a crabapple tree on an abandoned farm outside of New Brunswick, New Jersey. This provincial double murder on a lonely lover’s lane would soon become one of the most famous killings in American history—a veritable crime of the century. Blood & Ink freshly chronicles what remains one of the most electrifying but forgotten murder mysteries in U.S. history.|
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