There’s no better way to celebrate the return of fall and the upcoming Halloween season by stocking up on some cozy sweaters and heart-pounding mystery novels to entertain you all autumn long. If you want some fresh new reads, the following mystery books were just published this year and received rave reviews from the public and book critics alike. Whether you want a classic whodunit or a cozy mystery, you’re bound to find a new book to add to your TBR list here!
10 Best Mystery Novels of 2020
This unique mystery revolves around Wilde, a man who has no recollection of his childhood, knowing nothing except the fact that he had been found living in the woods as a young boy. As he tries to come to terms with his own mysterious past, a child in his town suddenly goes missing. Feeling a strong sense of empathy towards the lost child, Wilde starts to unravel the twisted secrets that may reveal what happened to the child… and himself.
North’s haunting mystery introduces us to Charlie Crabtree, a sinister teenager with even more dangerous thoughts, who commits murder so grisly that the story has become somewhat of a modern legend. Even though it has been 25 years since Charlie’s crime, his acts have inspired copycat killers who carried out their own violent fantasies. Paul Adams, who was once Charlie’s friend long ago, must return to his haunted hometown to care for his elderly mother, but doing so only reveals more disturbing details about the past.
This exciting, page-turning novel begins with what appears to be a picture-perfect family: Charlotte and her adoring husband are the owners of a cute little flower shop, and they have a sweet 5-year-old daughter named Daisy. Charlotte finally feels as if everything in her life is coming together, until her brother Rocco introduces Ruth, his new girlfriend, to Charlotte and her family. Ruth and Charlotte are polite towards each other, but both have suspicions about the intentions of the other woman. Then, one day, Daisy disappears, and everything begins to unravel.
This intriguing psychological mystery features the mystery-loving bookseller, Malcolm Kershaw, who compiled a list of what he believes to be the genre’s most unsolvable, or “perfect,” murders. The list was created purely out of Malcolm’s passion for these classic mysteries, such as Agatha Christie’s A.B.C Murders and Donna Tartt’s A Secret History, but this causes him to get wrapped up in an FBI investigation. A killer is on the loose who appears to be using Malcolm’s list of stories as inspiration for their own crimes. Will the mysterious killer ever be found, or will they live on as perfect murderers?
Julia Clark’s tense thriller launches the reader into a story about two women who are desperate for an escape. They want to disappear from their current lives and have a fresh start somewhere else. On a whim, they decide to switch plane tickets with one another in the hopes that each woman will be untraceable. In a freak accident, one of the planes goes down, and one woman is trapped into assuming the identity of the other. The ensuing drama will keep you on the very edge of your seat.
For something a bit lighter, pick up this debut novel in a new cozy mystery series by Abbey Collette. This sweet mystery takes place in a small town with a lovable set of characters dedicated to renewing an ice cream shop to its original glory. However, when construction delays cause the shop to open during the first snow of the season, the grand opening falls flat. Even worse, the ice cream shop owner finds a dead body in the snow. If she can’t solve the murder, her business and her family are at risk of total meltdown.
This instant New York Times bestseller is a compelling psychological mystery that has been described as Rear Window meets Get Out. Sydney Green’s neighborhood seems to be taking a dark turn, with several families disappearing from her street, new condos being built seemingly overnight, and “For Sale” signs littering the town. As Sydney tries to get to the bottom of the strange changes, she starts to delve into the darker history of her town. The more she learns, the more she fears that her own life and loved ones are in danger.
This thriller has been likened to the works of famed mystery writers like Agatha Christie, and it’s obvious why as soon as you begin to dig into this dizzying tale of a romantic wedding gone horribly wrong. On an idyllic island near Ireland, wedding guests gather to celebrate the marriage of a picture-perfect bride, a beautiful magazine publisher, and her husband-to-be, a dashing TV star. Everything is meticulously planned for an outstanding wedding, but things keep going awry. Petty fights break out among guests, rowdy drinking games begin, a bridesmaid’s dress is ruined, and then someone turns up dead. Everyone begins eyeing the other with suspicion, wondering who among them is a killer.
C.J. Box, a New York Times bestseller, describes this mystery as “a propulsive, page-turning, compelling fragmentation grenade of a debut thriller.” The story kicks off with an eerie conspiracy theory, a highly divisive new president, and the possible murder of the White House chief of staff. As citizens and government agencies alike begin to speculate, theorize, and scheme, suddenly nothing is as it once appeared. Allies are made out to be enemies, reliable leaders are outed as traitors, and democracy itself threatens to collapse. Who is willing to kill, or be killed, to get to the truth?
Turow’s legal thriller follows an intelligent defense lawyer who’s finally planning to retire at the old age of 85. But when one of his closest friends, a trusted doctor and a Nobel Prize winner in medicine, is accused of crimes ranging from murder to insider trading, the lawyer feels responsible to take on his case. However, as the lawyer probes deeper into his friend’s history, he finds himself feeling deeply conflicted. Is the doctor really as sinister as the evidence seems to prove, or is the lawyer not digging deep enough to discover the real truth?