These four multifaceted mysteries are perfect summer book club picks.
In Lucy Foley’s The Guest List, TV celebrity Will Slater marries editor Julia Keegan in a sparkling ceremony on an island off the Irish coast, but a series of ominous incidents undermine their nuptials. Julia receives an alarming anonymous note about Will, and a dead body is discovered not long after the wedding. Reading groups will enjoy unraveling Foley’s stylish, atmospheric mystery and delving into the questions she raises about identity, integrity and truth.
Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line, Deepa Anappara’s mesmerizing literary mystery, is narrated by 9-year-old Jai, a clever, funny boy who lives in a slum in India and is obsessed with detective shows. After a classmate goes missing, Jai, inspired by what he sees on TV, undertakes an investigation with the help of friends. As more youngsters disappear, Jai is drawn into a world of danger. Both a suspense-filled adventure and a meditation on Indian society, this is a rewarding selection for any book club.
Liane Moriarty’s Nine Perfect Strangers takes place at Tranquillum House, a mind and body-focused health resort where nine guests‚ including struggling romance novelist Frances Welty, hope to cure what ails them. But Masha, Tranquillum’s magnetic director, seems to be hiding something, and the atmosphere at the retreat soon turns sinister. Moriarty turns up the tension in this dark yet often humorous tale, which features a wonderfully wide-ranging cast of characters. Themes like self-improvement, power and the nature of community make this thriller a great book club pick. Pick it up in time to watch the TV adaptation, which streams on Hulu later this month, as a group!
Set in 1940s New York City, Stephen Spotswood’s Fortune Favors the Dead introduces readers to private eye Lillian Pentecost and her assistant, former circus knife-thrower Willowjean “Will” Parker. The pair is trying to solve the murder of wealthy Abigail Collins, who was bludgeoned to death with a crystal ball during a wild Halloween party. The case becomes more complex and possibly more dangerous thanks to Will’s attraction to Abigail’s daughter, Becca. Spotswood’s fresh spin on the hard-boiled whodunit will give your group plenty of topics to discuss, including gender, female friendship and the author’s use of historical detail.