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For Readers

Page turning mysteries for summer reading

By: Hidden Gems on July 13, 2021

Hidden Gems Books ARC service.

By: Hidden Gems on July 13, 2021


No matter your interests it’s highly likely there is a mystery novel out there for you. So if you’re looking to sink into a page-turner, check out our round up which includes a variety of mysteries, from sci-fi based to cozies, that have been popular and well reviewed by Hidden Gems readers over the past few months.


Vanishing Day

Vanishing Day by Valerie Davisson

Fans of J.A. Jance, Elly Griffiths, Louise Penny, C.J. Box, James Patterson, Nevada Barr, Sue Grafton, and Alexander McCall Smith will love Davisson’s fiercely independent and loyal Logan McKenna, a mystery solving school teacher.

Heidi S. writes in her 5-star review, “This is the fourth book in the Logan McKenna series – and a serious page turner at that! Logan gets a new neighbor, Lori, with her 3-year-old daughter. But soon, things become increasingly dangerous. Lori is hiding out from her abusive husband, but when he shows up, things take a turn for the worst. Lori ends up in the hospital and the only one that holds the key to what happened is her daughter. Logan gets thrown into the mix when the husband finds out she may have some information that he does not want her to have. This was a hard one to put down as there were so many twists and turns you just had to keep reading to see what would happen next!”

“Valerie Davisson is one of my favorite crime/mystery/thriller writers,” raves Erica W. in her 5-star review “Logan is a character that I cannot wait to read about her case. She grabs me from the first page until the last. There were many twists and turns that kept me reading. The story is a fast pace but again I had to make sure that I read everything because it is easy to miss one little clue that you could come to a conclusion that was a twist or a turn in the wrong direction. With every page, I felt like I was with Logan throughout the story. Logan is trying to solve another mystery that brings her choice of a friend in check. Logan doesn’t realize that her friend is not her friend. She needs to bring out a killer and has looked deeper than ever before. Can Logan bring the killer to justice? Will she get out from underneath this case? I highly recommend this book because it will leave you speechless.”


Raggedyland by Paul J Heald

An auctioned storage locker comes with a box of Raggedy Ann books and a dresser drawer stuffed with grisly mementos. A small college town in Georgia is now ground zero for a mind-bending cold case. This character-driven mystery delivers an unorthodox punch in the gut in the best way possible.

Huntress writes in her 5-star review, “A great mystery is hard to find, and this story offers a variety of surprises along the way. The characters are smart, entertaining, and hold your interest until the end. Now I must start from the beginning and read the earlier titles in Heald’s Clarkeston series.”

“A fun and intelligent read!” raves Diana in her 5-star review. “I loved the blend of tasteful humor, action, and the unexpected plot twists! Sometimes I wondered how one could think of such things, haha I’m glad I’ve finally got acquainted with Paul Heald’s work because I heard a lot of good things about his books. Would totally recommend it!”

Sniffed Out

Sniffed Out by Tina Swayzee McCright

In Book One of the Paparazzi Pooch Cozy Mysteries Series, Grace Blackwell is too kind-hearted to continue working with ruthless paparazzi in California. Soon, a lack of finances forces her to leave the state and move in with her eccentric mother, Roxie. They take a trip to Sedona where they stumble upon the dead body of a famous movie star. You’ll love the wacky characters along for this investigation.

“Filled with laugh out loud moments we are treated to a wonderful new series that will make you want more!” writes Merry A. in her 5-star review. “When Grace realizes her job as a reporter is not for her, her flamboyant mother Roxie volunteers her daughter to take wedding pictures of her friend’s wedding. Who knows, maybe this will be a new career choice for Grace. But when Roxie and Grace find a dead body, Roxie convinces Grace they have to investigate and find the murderer. And we also have Roxie’s friends who came to the wedding when the bride gave she and Grace a suite to stay in while they are there. So of course the whole crew gets involved in the investigation. With lots of laughs, twists and turns and red-herrings, we are taken through the investigation. I was definitely taken by surprise at the ending and was sorry the book ended because I really liked reading about Roxie, her quirky friends and Grace. Can’t wait to see what book 2 will bring.”

“This entertaining cozy mystery is unpredictable and action-packed,” says Shavona T. in her 5-star review. “The cover alone, with the adorable fluffy white dog, would get me to read this book. Roxie is quite the quirky senior citizen with her beehive hairdo and stiletto heels. (I picture an older version of Peg Bundy on Married With Children.) Her daughter Grace is taking wedding photos at a resort in Sedona. The bride has provided a suite free of charge so Roxie and her friends tag along. They stumble upon not one, but two murder victims and super sleuth that she is, Roxie decides she and her daughter Grace should investigate. The author did an excellent job of keeping me in suspense. I never suspected the actual killer so it came as a complete surprise.”


Shimmers by J.P. Strecker

With 85 Amazon reviews and an impressive 4.6 average star rating, Shimmers is a unique science fiction horror novel, centering around the theme of a physics experiment gone wrong.

“I couldn’t put this book down,” writes Dena B. in their 5-star review. “It got my attention and kept it all the way through. There was some very interesting twist and turns in this book that kept me wanting more. I liked how you find out that both boys can see the different shimmers. It’s a very fast paced novel about the paranormal that keeps you interested.”

“It somewhat reminded me of the TV show Stranger Things!” explains Jess B. in their 5-star review. “I really enjoyed reading this book and would recommend it to anyone who enjoys sci fi novels. I liked the plot line, characters, and more. Crossing my fingers that there is a sequel.”

Castaways & Longer Days

Castaways & Longer Days by Trixie Silvertale

Castaways and Longer Days is the fourteenth book in the hilarious paranormal cozy mystery series, Mitzy Moon Mysteries. If you like snarky heroines, supernatural misfits, and a splash of romance, then you’ll love Hidden Gem’s favorite Trixie Silvertale’s twisty whodunit.

“Wow! Another great adventure with Mitzy Moon and company,” says J. Olivas in their 5-star review. “I thought her life was crazy before but throw in a tornado, and that just sent it up a few notches on the danger scale. While trying to solve another murder Mitzy has a few things to fix with Ghost-ma while still trying to keep things fun and flirty with Sheriff Erick, who is pretty much the best book boyfriend ever. Lots of action and adventure as always with Mitzy. There are also some really touching moments too. Definitely a world that I enjoy spending time in! I highly recommend this series!”

Dbzemom raves in their 5-star review, “This entire series is amazing! The characters are fun and engaging. Each story is original and fun. What makes each one so good is the way Silvertale makes use of descriptive words and phrases, such as, “The glorious hot water, luxurious steam, and rejuvenating eucalyptus bath products envelop me.” Here’s another: “You can smell the dread in the air. The six dim bulbs seem to hold the only flicker of hope as I gaze out over the sea of anxious faces.” I feel like I’m right there with Mitzy Moon. The characters have become friends. The worry through the storm and the joys feel real. I definitely recommend this one as well as the rest of the series.”

Hidden Gems readers got to read these captivating mysteries first, so if you want more intriguing novels to add to your collection, sign up today! Subscribers to Hidden Gems receive invitations to read books like these – plus other titles from any of up to 15 other genres – for free. Authors are just looking for honest reviews when you’re done!

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