June 18, 2020

The best mysteries and thrillers of 2020 (so far!)

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June 18, 2020

The best mysteries and thrillers of 2020 (so far!)

Feature by
June 18, 2020

The best mysteries and thrillers of 2020 (so far!)

Feature by
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Many aspects of life have changed in the past few months, but the number of clever mysteries and addictive thrillers out there has not lessened one bit (thank goodness). Here are the 10 titles that have staked out a place at the top of our list of favorites.


The Better Liar by Tanen Jones

This dark, twisty tribute to unreliable narrators and tenacious women is what every thriller wants to be: smart, surprising and unnerving.


The Missing American by Kwei Quartey

This rollicking trip through Ghana’s criminal underworld introduces readers to stalwart sleuth Emma Djan, who will hopefully have many more cases to come.


A Divided Loyalty by Charles Todd

Somehow, Todd’s long-running series starring the complicated, haunted Inspector Ian Rutledge just keeps getting better and better.


The Holdout by Graham Moore

Moore’s smart and intense courtroom drama is a pretty much perfect blend of entertainment and social commentary.


Eight Perfect Murders by Peter Swanson

A wickedly clever thriller that also serves as a love letter to the golden age of mysteries, Swanson’s mystery is a treat for all readers, but especially diehard whodunit fans.


The Body in the Garden by Katharine Schellman

Schellman’s cozy Regency mystery handles issues of class and race with sensitivity and depth, and is smashingly entertaining to boot.


Take Me Apart by Sara Sligar

Sligar’s haunting debut is rife with fascinating dichotomies, examining the legacies we leave behind and the infuriating difficulties of being a female artist.


What You Don’t See by Tracy Clark

There are no high concepts or rhetorical tricks to be found in Clark’s mystery—just former Chicago cop-turned-PI Cass Raines and a particularly compelling case, told through Clark’s refreshing, lived-in, no-frills prose.


The Distant Dead by Heather Young

The suspense is slow and steady in this meditative, artistic novel, which is as much a murder mystery as it is a contemplation of place.


Vera Kelly Is Not a Mystery by Rosalie Knecht

Sexy, sad and stylish, Knecht’s 1960s-set series starring Vera Kelly finds the former CIA agent trying to set up shop as s PI, which is difficult enough for a woman even before you get to the fact that she’s gay.

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