5 Mind-Bending Mystery Books to Unravel
Mystery books never go out of season, and to prove that we scoured the shelves of Hidden Gems subscribers to identify five of the best-performing mystery novels shared to them for FREE this springtime. From ice cold and chilling to cozy and perplexing, you’ll be sure to find one that suits your tastes; and leaves you pondering “whodunnit.”
Pawsitively Poisonous by Melissa Erin Jackson
The little town of Edgehill, Oregon has its own unique mysteries – like an uncommon captivation with cats – but perhaps the most mysterious of all is Amber Blackwood, owner of the curious Quirky Whisker store. For the most part, nobody cares – Keep Oregon Weird, right? – until Amber’s best friend turns up dead, and a bottle of her headache tonic is found in the corpse’s hands. Now, attention turns to Amber, and her identity as a witch threatens to condemn her for a crime she didn’t commit.
In a 5-star review, Amazon Customer wrote: “In addition to its charm and warmth, this book is also a page-turning mystery that kept my interest throughout. I just couldn’t put it down. There are references, in this debut book in the series, to additional family members and a complicated family history. I look forward to future books in the series as Amber develops her abilities and unravels the mysteries of her past and present.”
“A delightful mystery of magic and murder,” writes Lindsey Duga, in her own 5-star review of this mystery book. “So much fun! The setting, which is so important in a cozy mystery, was so unique and wonderfully charming. It’s a town obsessed with cats, so you know what that means…cat puns, cat puns, cat puns! It was, indeed, pawsitively purrfect. But all puns aside, the witch and the magic in this world is original and beautifully described. The spells themselves add a layer of intrigue and cleverness to your typical murder mystery. Go buy this book. RIGHT. MEOW!”
Folly at the Fair by Kari Bovee
I ADORED the concept of this mystery book, since I’d been fascinated by the Chicago World Fair ever since I visited last year. In this fast-paced novel, infamous sharpshooter Annie Oakley – who was really there, right in Chicago in 1893 – has to defend a chivalrous co-performer when they’re accused of murder. History, mystery, and murder combine in a beautifully researched book that really caught my imagination.
Mallory A. Haws of The Haunted Reading Room Reviews, wrote: “This is exciting, heartwarming, reader-friendly, and deeply heartfelt. The mysteries were highly intriguing, the various interpersonal relationships richly felt. The prologue is a little scary (the Villain). I’m eager to catch up on earlier books in this series, and anticipating future releases. Annie Oakley is a heroine to cheer!”
“An exciting mystery,” wrote Joy Jessup. “As a long-time lover of all things historical, I have heard many references to Annie Oakley but never truly delved into her life. When presented with the opportunity to read this novel starring the one and only ‘Little Miss Sure Shot’, I couldn’t say no. Ms. Bovee did not disappoint! She obviously did her research and used it to provide an exciting trip into what Annie’s life may have been like. The characters in this book were very believable. Emma’s belief in the power of women, Annie’s go-get-em outlook, Frank’s frustration as he fulfilled the role of manager AND husband, and even Liza’s resilience all rang true. On top of that, the descriptions of the White City, the Ferris wheel, and the attire were executed so that the reader could imagine being there with the characters.”
Bars and Boxcars by Trixie Silvertale
We’re six books into the Mitzy Moon Mysteries by Trixie Silvertale and they just keep getting better and better. In this installment, our intrepid paranormal bookstore detective has to work out who’s heisting her father’s railroad cars; and that’s when things get deliciously intense.
“Ten stars!” Wrote 5-star reviewer Nadine Vrijhof. “The opening drew me in right away: it took me like two sentences and I was ba-a-ack! Oh how I love this series. And this was even better than the others, how that is even possible I don’t know. Ten stars from me! I kept on reading way past my bedtime. Just couldn’t put it down. So good. The book I started after I finished this one paled in comparison, even though that was pretty good too, but this one was so good it leaves other books behind by a mile!”
“I’m lovin’ this series!” Writes 5-star reviewer Dawn H. “Mitzy always attracts trouble. She has some psychic gifts that can often get her out of trouble, but they also get her into trouble in the first place. Bars & Boxcars is no different. When her father’s trains are being robbed by a professional gang, Mitzy decides to look into it. The problem is, she gets more than she bargained for. I always like the Mitzy Moon stories. They’re funny, suspenseful, and there’s always a little romance, especially between her and the sheriff. I’m looking forward to number seven!”
Past Made Present by Bo Thunboe
After some cozy mysteries, let’s get right down to business with the cold-blooded Past Made Present, the fourth book in the Jake Houser Mystery Series by Chicago-born author Bo Thunboe. In this installment, Detective Jake Houser has to face the horrific possibility that the wrong man has spent 30 years incarcerated for a crime he didn’t commit; and his fellow law officers could be hiding the truth as to who was really responsible.
“Past Made Present is a thrilling mystery that will keep you on your toes,” writes Romaine Heart in a 5-star review. “The suspected killer is revealed but what lies in the past is shocking. Not only was he a killer but a protected one at that. As the story unfolds and you think everything is coming up roses…BAM!! the author throws you for one heck of a loop. Didn’t see those two things coming! A suspenseful story I would definitely recommend!”
Kindle Chris also gave the book 5-stars, writing: “After reading this book I was given to review, I immediately sign up for Bo Thunboe’s website. The interplay between characters, chapters, lawmen and writers keep the story moving along and intriguing. The politics of a small town and everyone’s interest in their own careers and family offer insight chat into our current government antics. Be sure to catch this one.”
Steal Away by BV Lawson
If you thought the antiques business wasn’t worth killing anybody over, BV Lawson is here to reeducate you. In the first book of the Adam Dutton & Beverly Laborde Mystery Series, you’ll meet elegant criminal Beverly and conflicted cop Adam as they wrestle with their mutual attraction and the attention of Vermont’s most murderous collector of antiquities.
“I love this book,” wrote Peggy in a 5-star review. “I really love this book! It had my attention from the beginning till the end. This book has some family members that make you very grateful for the family you grew up in. The book is packed with action, danger and suspense. I loved the rapid fire of one thing happening after the next before you got a chance to recover from the first shock. I loved the ending! I think this is going to be a wonderful series of books.”
“Fast-paced and action-filled,” wrote Rita R. Sheppard in her 5-star review. “This book is full of strong willed, colorful, and devious characters. I enjoyed reading the interaction between con woman Beverly Laborde and police detective Adam Dutton. It was like watching a tennis ball going back and forth as the two matched wits with each other. The author did a great job of describing the locale along with the landmarks that Beverly traveled to find the silver statue. Beverly is a strong character who doesn’t let anything get her down for long and a good match for Adam who will also stop at nothing to keep up with her. This results in the two of them getting into some very dangerous situations that could have caused their deaths but they stayed strong against the odds against them to come through okay in the end. I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a great mystery that will get you so caught up in the story that you will keep reading to the end.”