The mystery genre is massive. For all that we don’t want crime to affect us personally, it sure is fun to read about! And mystery writers help keep that passion alive in many ways. So how can this vast number of books be navigated? At NoveList, we offer an array of mystery genres — from cozy mysteries where the crime stays behind closed doors, to fantasy mysteries that take place in other worlds entirely, to police procedurals that focus on the minutiae of the investigation. 

For a more nuanced take on the Mystery genre, NoveList also has quite a few themes that are perfect for whodunit fans. For instance, if you prefer feline sleuths to humans, then check out the theme Sherlock Paws. Art forgeries can be found under criminal masterpieces. Or if you love a good British country house mystery, look no further than The butler did it! 

The latest of these themes is wartime crime, an adult-only theme that focuses on crimes and criminal investigations that take place during a time of war. In these books, war affects the mystery in some manner and can create unusual situations for the investigator. For example, in The Siege by Arturo Perez-Reverte, a policeman must stop a serial killer among the people trapped in the city of Cadiz during the Napoleonic Wars. Mr. Churchill’s Secretary by Susan Elia MacNeal deals with a murder during the London Blitz. In the Sean Duffy series by Adrian McKinty, which takes place during the Troubles in Northern Ireland, Detective Duffy must question whether crimes might, in fact, be political. 

Wartime crime is also a great theme for lovers of Historical fiction. Interested in the Wars of the Roses? Try Dark Queen Rising by Paul C. Doherty. The American Civil War? Try Murder in the Lincoln White House by Colleen Gleason. What about World War I? Try By a Slow River by Philippe Claudel. To find your particular interest try pairing Wartime crime with a specific time period. For instance, enter in the search bar: TH “Wartime crime” AND SW “18th century

What kind of mysteries do you like to read? Let us know!

P.S. For Cold War fans, try the theme Beyond the Iron Curtain, which has a greater focus on spycraft.

Elizabeth Coleman is a Metadata Librarian II for NoveList.