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Read-Alikes for ‘21st Birthday’ by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro | LibraryReads

Mrs. Rochester’s Ghost

Fans of Jane Eyre who enjoyed Rachel Hawkins’s The Wife Upstairs will appreciate this equally enjoyable retelling from Marcott (The Producer’s Daughter).

City of Dark Corners

This gritty stand-alone deals with Phoenix’s rough-and-tumble past and its questionable police force in the 1930s. Talton excels at creating the ambiance of historic Phoenix. Suggest for fans of realistic historical mysteries or Phoenix Noir.
PREMIUM

The Last Thing He Told Me

For readers who like a resilient, resourceful heroine and a compelling domestic suspense story.
PREMIUM

The Plot

Fans of slow-burn, character-driven thrillers will enjoy this story of an author who has a secret he is desperately trying to keep. Recommended for fans of secrets-fueled suspense writers like Jennifer Hillier, Clare Mackintosh, and Gilly Macmillan.

The Turnout

Abbott (Give Me Your Hand) has a top-notch ability to reveal the dark undercurrents of women’s relationships and sexuality. Her taut, unsettling writing creates tension through the slightest actions and phrases, and keeps the pages turning. This is clever, chilling psychological suspense at its best.

The Lost Girls

Readers who enjoy true crime, especially podcasts, as well as thrillers featuring unreliable narrators, will appreciate Chiarella’s (And Again) haunting story of lost girls, lost women, and revenge.
PREMIUM

Thirty-One Bones

Writing as Cry, Scottish author Gordon Brown (“Craig McIntyre” series) has created a darkly humorous adventure with a cast of exaggerated characters and a heroine who is smarter than all of them. Fans of capers with twisted plots might want to try this one.
PREMIUM

The Prodigal Daughter

Harrison follows Not of This Fold with a believable story about teen runaways, violence, sexual assault, and her ongoing examination of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. While the ending might not satisfy some readers, it is realistic. Readers of Betty Webb’s books may want to try this series.

The Hunting Wives

Cobb (Big Woods) writes a clever twisty plot in this alcohol-infused, sexually charged thriller. Gossipy, scandalous housewives behaving badly might make this the juiciest read of the season. For fans of Liane Moriarty.

The Russian Key

When Kate says “I was in my element, one lie following another, some good, some not so good,” she is so convincing that the author’s persona never intrudes. Spring-loaded with surprises, this debut from eightysomething Laber plumbs the depths of the USSR’s brutality, in a devious tale that matches the best of the TV series The Americans and Jason Matthews’s “Russian Sparrow” trilogy.

Find You First

Barclay (Elevator Pitch) deftly twists and turns all these characters into a taut and engrossing thriller that will keep readers guessing until the end. A definite must-read for fans of Harlan Coben, Jason Pinter, or Christopher Swann.
PREMIUM

One Half Truth

After Between Two Evils, this sixth police procedural in Dolan’s award-winning series combines current British social issues with a step-by-step investigation. Readers of Deborah Crombie’s Duncan Kincaid/Gemma James books may want to try this carefully plotted series.
PREMIUM

I Don’t Forgive You

In crime reporter Thompson’s gripping fiction debut, Allie is welcomed to her wealthy new neighborhood by being framed for murder. The spot-on depictions of modern parenthood and suburban life make this story even more suspenseful, as Allie tries to find the real murderer before her entire life is destroyed.
PREMIUM

The Fiancée

White (The Secrets You Keep) creates a twisty family drama that maintains subdued tension as Summer seeks answers. While the novel is not exceptional, and the conclusion takes too long to wrap up dangling details, it is a welcome addition to popular fiction collections.
PREMIUM

Nantucket Penny

Kennis is hard on himself in this follow-up to Nantucket Counterfeit. The mystery has a nail-biter of a climax that will appeal to most audiences, but its many story lines and large cast will be appreciated only by regular readers of the series.

Falling

Newman keeps up an extreme pace from the first page—a near-impossible task, considering that the hero is locked in a cockpit, unable to take action himself. This novel is like the films Die Hard and Speed on steroids, creating one of the year’s best thrillers.
PREMIUM

Bath Haus

A sleek, sexy queer thriller for fans of B. A. Paris’s Behind Closed Doors.
PREMIUM

City on the Edge

Because Swinson’s (“Frank Marr” series) father served in the U.S. Foreign Service and his family lived all over the world, this book has a particular realism and an almost autobiographical perspective. Readers who enjoy international intrigue, spies, and mystery, or coming-of-age stories, will enjoy this book.
PREMIUM

Gone Missing in Harlem

Holloway’s impeccable mystery gives voice to the experiences of some Black American families during the early 20th century. Readers who enjoyed A Death in Harlem or Justina Ireland’s “Dread Nation” series will appreciate this book.
PREMIUM

The Siren

St. John’s (The Lion’s Den) latest will please fans of Hollywood tales full of broken dreams and runaway egos more than traditional thriller readers. Hand it to devotees of quintessential beach reads and those looking to escape into the darker and steamier side of all things Tinseltown.
PREMIUM

Breakout

The combination of vengeance quest and disaster epic make for a compelling and adrenaline-filled thriller. TV and game writer Herron’s debut stands apart with its strong characterization and assured pacing, though at times the violence does skew toward the gratuitous.

The Reincarnationist Papers

Already slated to be a motion picture, this is a fascinating and fast-paced story that will keep readers engaged until the very end.
PREMIUM

A Wicked Conceit

The book’s many ahistorical references impede the willing suspension of disbelief necessary to enjoy a historical mystery. It’s a Georgian Scotland with a 21st-century mindset. However, like the other books in Huber’s popular series, it is a well-plotted mystery that deepens even as the twists keep coming.

PREMIUM

The Dancing Girls

This novel is not only a police procedural, but a psychological study of a serial killer. However, the many continuous chapters focused on the killer and the victims disrupt the flow of the investigative plot. Readers will be pleased with a clever twist at the end. Future books in the series would benefit from more focus on the character development of Jo and her team.

Read-Alikes for ‘A Gambling Man’ by David Baldacci | LibraryReads

Wolf Kill

Originally published in 2013, the book was reedited by author Mary Logue, and is now the first in a proposed four-book series featuring Sam Rivers. Fans of Paul Doiron’s The Poacher’s Son or the Joe Pickett books will appreciate this descriptive novel with an intriguing plot and well-written characters.

PREMIUM

The Last Thing To Burn

Dean (Red Snow) has written a horrific tale of human trafficking in this gripping and powerful novel. Recommended to fans of stories that explore the sheer human will and determination to escape unimaginable situations.

PREMIUM

The Next Wife

Bring the popcorn for this high-noon of a novel, replete with deliciously snarky dialogue and a satisfying twist.

Read-Alikes for ‘Ocean Prey’ by John Sandford | LibraryReads

What the Devil Knows

The St. Cyr series, and this entry in particular (following Who Speaks for the Damned), is highly recommended for readers who want their history appropriately dark and gritty, their politics dirty and corrupt, and their mystery fascinating, convoluted, and just as relevant now as it was then. Sebastian St. Cyr, with his foot in the aristocracy and his eye on justice, is a hero to be followed into whatever dark corner he investigates.
PREMIUM

The Company

Spencer, author of various series featuring police officers (“Jennie Redhead”; “Monika Paniatowski”) offers an intense, convoluted stand-alone. It’s not always easy to piece together Rob’s twisted thoughts and the police investigation, but readers who enjoy Spencer’s works might want to try.
PREMIUM

A Fatal First Night

Readers who enjoy historical mysteries with a touch of romance will enjoy the period details and strong female characters, as well as Ella’s colorful parrot, Montezuma.

You Love Me

Fans of the series will want to read this book in one sitting. It’s wickedly full of twists, turns, and a dizzying array of pop culture references and witticisms.
PREMIUM

Five Ways To Disappear

This mystery has dark elements that contrast with the beautiful locale; it will please fans of the series, as well as those who appreciate noir novels in general. The characters are well developed, with their faults laid out for readers. The several strands of the plot are all brought together quite acceptably in the denouement, except for Cal’s earlier crime, which is left to readers’ imagination; the author intends this to be the last book in the series.
PREMIUM

Death with a Double Edge

This atmospheric and fast-paced novel is a welcome addition to the series. Those who enjoy the interaction between Daniel and Miriam fford Croft may be disappointed since she only makes a brief appearance in this novel. Recommended to fans of historical British mysteries, such as those by Charles Finch and Charles Todd, as well as fans of Perry’s other series.
PREMIUM

Hour of the Witch

Bohjalian’s (Midwives) historical novel is full of twists and turns. Though not a typical suspense novel, the story has many of the page-turning plot lines of a thriller, and is sure to keep readers enthralled. Though it’s set in the 1600s, Mary’s story resonates today, as it addresses the role religious and societal expectations can play in the lives of individuals. A must-read and highly recommended.
PREMIUM

Transient Desires

Brunetti continues to delight, and this will do well in libraries where the series has proved popular.
PREMIUM

Local Woman Missing

The latest from Kubica (The Good Girl; The Other Mrs.) will appeal to fans of Lisa Jackson and Gregg Olsen and readers who enjoy missing-persons novels. The twists, turns, and an unpredictable ending make it irresistible.

The Anatomy of Desire

For fans of true crime and podcasts such as Serial, this riveting mock podcast docudrama ratchets up the suspense as readers glimpse every angle of the story from a 360–degree view.
PREMIUM

The Watcher Girl

Kent’s (When I Was You) psychological suspense thriller delivers with an interesting premise, captivating characters, and unexpected twists.
PREMIUM

When the Stars Go Dark

This melancholy but gripping tale uses backstory and flashbacks to propel the mystery forward. Part suspense, part self-discovery tale, this first attempt at crime fiction from historical fiction author McLain (The Paris Wife) is hard to resist. Fans of the author’s other works will not be disappointed.
PREMIUM

Secret Mischief

Blake’s seventh “Fidelis & Cragg” mystery (following Death and the Chevalier) is slow-paced, with a startling conclusion. Readers who enjoy historical and legal perspectives will appreciate the careful attention to detail in a story showing how the accused had to prove their innocence.
PREMIUM

Bad Moon Rising

The third “Bad Axe County” mystery, following Dead Man Dancing, is a grim, atmospheric story set in a bleak territory. Fans of Tricia Fields’s gritty Josie Gray mysteries or Chris Harding Thornton’s dark Pickard County Atlas may appreciate the bizarre cast of characters and the harsh setting of this book.
PREMIUM

Independent Bones

Haines follows A Garland of Bones with an issue-oriented mystery that delves into the stories of women who fought for their independence, alongside accounts of domestic abuse. Despite the heavy overtones, there’s room for humor as dogs and cats assist with the investigation. Fans of the series will enjoy the depth of the story, along with the characters’ personal development.
PREMIUM

While Justice Sleeps

Although it’s not successful as a thriller, the book’s plethora of women role models, including a chief justice, and its “inside DC” look at political skullduggery make Abrams’s novel a well-informed political and legal narrative.

People of Abandoned Character

This debut historical mystery contains echoes of Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca and Jack the Ripper. The unreliable narration combines with richly detailed writing in a mystery with a shocking conclusion.
PREMIUM

A Peculiar Combination

Louisiana librarian Weaver (Murder at Brightwell) launches an engaging new series that sparkles. Infused with witty romantic conflict, this historical mystery with convincing period details concludes with enticing story threads for future entries. For fans of Susan Elia MacNeal and Allison Montclair.
PREMIUM

Last Seen

The book’s gritty and violent realism reads like the San Francisco cousin to James Lee Burke’s “Dave Robicheaux” series, but with plot convolutions that feel like melodrama. (Cassie’s story line moves quickly from unlikely into the realm of unbelievable.) The lead character, O’Higgins, never develops beyond his collection of personal issues, leaving the book without a captivating core. While Harrington (The Good Physician) is an author to watch, this ambitious police procedural is ultimately unsuccessful.
PREMIUM

Death Washes Ashore

The sequel to Death by the Bay is a descriptive mystery with a strong sense of place. Readers who enjoy well-plotted atmospheric stories featuring small-town sheriffs, such as Victoria Houston’s “Loon Lake” mysteries, should enjoy this book.
PREMIUM

The Vanishing Museum on the Rue Mistral

The ninth in the series (after A Noël Killing) continues the author’s focus on ambiance and the good life in Provence: the food, the wine, the art. Foodies who enjoy mysteries like David P. Wagner’s Italy-set “Rick Montoya” titles will appreciate the emphasis on gourmet meals in this police procedural.
PREMIUM

In the Company of Killers

Christy’s credentials are excellent—National Geographic’s former head of special investigations; his earlier nonfiction title The Lizard King—but Company doesn’t quite make it, with a cookie-cutter plot and weak characterization.

The North Face of the Heart

The mysteries are dark and twisty, and the moments of danger are plentiful. Amaia’s experience with trauma gives her insight into people’s thinking; she uses this knowledge to hunt down new demons. Fans of noir fiction will devour this book.

The Keepers

The follow-up to The Finders sets a relentless pace. Corrupt politicians, the mob, a brutal killer, and a shocking death combine in a fast-paced story of an ordinary man and his extraordinary dogs. For fans of Paula Munier’s or Susan Furlong’s books featuring dogs.

When a Stranger Comes to Town

These stories by well-known authors span a wide range under the umbrella of “mystery.” Mystery enthusiasts will be hard-pressed to find a story they don’t like. Recommended for readers interested in all facets of mystery, suspense, crime, or detective fiction.

The Windsor Knot

A veritable love letter to England’s current monarch, this adult debut by children’s author Bennett (The Look) is a triumph full of royal tidbits and international high jinks. The pivotal character of Rozie adds just the right note of modernity, and readers will be thrilled to know that the second book in the series is due later this year. Strongly recommended for purchase.
PREMIUM

Bitterroot Lake

Beckman paints a gorgeous picture of an idyllic small town. With some paranormal aspects, secrets past and present, and a multitude of murder suspects, this suspense debut is sure to attract readers.

Mystery Best Sellers, Mar. 2021 | Most In-Demand in Libraries & Bookstores

PREMIUM

The Secret Lives of Dentists

This solid procedural will appeal to discerning mystery lovers.

Death of a Showman

With a spirited, intelligent heroine; pitch-perfect descriptions of pre–World War I New York; and believable characters, Fredericks’s latest historical mystery is a delight.

Read-Alikes for ‘Win’ by Harlan Coben | LibraryReads

The Girls Are All So Nice Here

Oh, snap! The world of psychological suspense has a new player in YA novelist Flynn (Last Girl Lied To). Her adult debut is a mesmerizing literary cocktail composed of a dash of The Secret History, a jigger of Mean Girls, and a generous shot of the frank sexuality and unabashed language of Cruel Intentions. It’s a thrilling novel, rich in plot twists, that also offers an incisive take on the price some women are forced to pay in order to “win” in life.
PREMIUM

We Begin at the End

Stubbornly loyal Walk and worldly-wise Duchess are complex, well-developed characters, each searching for truth and justice. Reminiscent of Charles Portis’s True Grit, Whitaker’s (Tall Oaks) literary thriller will satisfy fans of modern Westerns and readers who like strong heroines.l
PREMIUM

The Consequences of Fear

A must-read for Maisie Dobbs fans, this is an excellent fit for readers of historical and thoughtful mysteries.

Never Far Away

Fans of the author’s previous works will be on the edge of their seats as they follow his characters’ attempts to survive vicious assassins. As he often does, Koryta (If She Wakes) provides strong character development, believable dialogue, and a fast-paced narrative. Keen observers will notice a brief sighting of two brothers (and evil murderers) who were introduced in Koryta’s Those Who Wish Me Dead.
PREMIUM

The Garden of Angels

A good read for those who love their World War II thrillers with a bit of history included. Followers of Donna Leon’s “Commissario Brunetti” mysteries may appreciate the atmosphere and the intrigue.

Crime and Comfort: 90 Mysteries for Our Times Promise Escape and Coziness | Mystery Preview 2021

Sons of Valor

This book is a must-read for fans of covert-ops thrillers, and the authors are looking like the next Preston and Child.

A Deadly Twist

Siger’s latest novel (after The Mykonos Mob) is as insightful as earlier ones concerning the problems in Greece. Followers of the series will relish a reunion with Kaldis and a group of friends in an engrossing procedural. New readers will discover the gorgeous aspects of Greek life in a mystery that uncovers the corruption of the country.
PREMIUM

Where Have You Gone Without Me?

With its short, brisk chapters, the novel reads as if it were a newspaper column, appropriate for the investigative nature of the book. While there is little suspense, readers who enjoy colorful characters might appreciate this fiction debut by a sports and entertainment journalist who writes what he knows.
PREMIUM

What You Never Knew

With an emphasis on place and characters, the debut is a slow-moving, atmospheric novel. Only readers with a great deal of patience will wade through the alternating viewpoints from the dead May and the living June to uncover a secret that isn’t very surprising.

The Drummers

It’s been five years since the last Josie Gray book by the Hillerman Prize–winning author of The Territory. The riveting mystery is an intense, ripped-from-the-headlines story for anyone looking for a compelling tale of homegrown terrorists with grandiose schemes.
PREMIUM

On an Outgoing Tide

The multiple cases and personal story lines in this well-written police procedural will only be appreciated if someone has read the series. There’s a great deal of backstory in this follow-up to Red, Red Snow, too much for new readers.

Arsenic and Adobo

This debut introduces readers to Filipino American food and culture, with its emphasis on family. There are cozy tropes (the close-knit community, the food business), but the emphasis on the Tagalog language, the culture, and drug dealing in a small town add gravity and individuality to this outstanding series kick-off.

The Hiding Place

The sequel to Blind Search is a riveting, fast-paced story of family and small-town secrets. Tension builds quickly in the emotional story involving unforgettable working dogs and the people who love them.
PREMIUM

The Unkindness of Ravens

While readers may want to compare librarian Hilliard’s debut with the library-centered mysteries by Jenn McKinlay or Victoria Gilbert, this one is actually a little darker than the other cozies. Most of the atmospheric story takes place in the beloved but old village library. Readers who remember those classic girl detective mysteries, and many library staff members, will appreciate this book.
PREMIUM

The Sign of Death

The follow-up to A Study in Murder is a fun, character-driven mystery with two unconventional amateur sleuths. The emphasis on Victorian lifestyle in a humorous cozy should satisfy fans of atmospheric historical mysteries.
PREMIUM

An Unexpected Peril

While series fans will certainly enjoy the newest installment for Veronica and Stoker, this reads well as a stand-alone and will lure readers to Raybourn’s backlist. A rollicking adventure appropriate for mountaineers and mystery-hunters alike.
PREMIUM

The Bounty

This is a terrific installment in an engaging series, previously cowritten with Peter Evanovich and Lee Goldberg. Fans of Janet Evanovich will not be disappointed; her writing blends perfectly with the award-winning mastery of Hamilton (“Alex McKnight” thrillers). The globetrotting only adds to the enjoyment of what is arguably even better than her “Stephanie Plum” books. Mission: Impossible meets National Treasure in this winner that one hopes will be the first of many more adventures and more collaboration with Hamilton.
PREMIUM

A Man Named Doll

The latest by Ames (You Were Never Really Here), creator of the television shows Bored to Death and Blunt Talk, is recommended only for those who want to read a dark novel featuring the adventures of a messed-up PI, high on drugs, who endangers himself with every stupid action.
PREMIUM

The Perfect Guests

Rous’s second novel (after The Au Pair) has surprises and twists that mystery fans will love, and parallel intrigues that will draw romance fans.
PREMIUM

Last Seen Wearing

Author Leslie S. Klinger’s introduction and notes for this latest Library of Congress Crime Classic note that Waugh (1930–2008) wrote this first acclaimed police procedural, basing it on true crime cases and TV’s Dragnet. The methodical story follows the police investigation step by step. Students of the mystery genre will want to read this title, originally published in 1952, which appears on the Mystery Writers of America list of 100 Best Mysteries of All Time.
PREMIUM

The Rat Began To Gnaw the Rope

Readers who like classic hard-boiled mysteries with a dash of humor will thoroughly enjoy this rollicking, well-plotted work. Fans of Sue Grafton’s writings will read this and appreciate that she came by her talents honestly.
PREMIUM

The Postscript Murders

Readers of Griffiths’s Edgar Award–winning The Stranger Diaries, or her “Ruth Galloway” mysteries, will welcome this book with a diverse cast of well-developed characters. However, the story drags at times. Richard Osman’s The Thursday Murder Club is a stronger pick for those looking for unusual amateur sleuths.
PREMIUM

The Survivors

Harper (The Lost Man) again excels at creating atmosphere and depicting tense interpersonal relationships. But unlike her previous stand-alone, this story’s suspense doesn’t escalate satisfactorily. Instead, the author delivers a nuanced rumination on guilt, community, and family that’s best for readers of domestic fiction or light mysteries.

The Silenced Women

This start of a cinematic new series is an intense police procedural. Readers will be immersed in the investigation by a talented team, while also privy to the actions of a brilliant killer.
PREMIUM

Fast Ice

The pace never slows, and the villains are extra nasty in this entry that delivers what readers expect when they see Cussler’s name on the cover. Cussler, who died in 2020, and frequent cowriter Brown convey marine biology’s complexities in a way that makes it believable and understandable. Grab a comfy chair and plan to read all night.
PREMIUM

A Simple Murder: A Kate Burkholder Short Story Collection

As with any collection, some stories are stronger than others, and the author doesn’t have much opportunity to develop the plot. Castillo shines when she focuses on the Amish lifestyle, and in the longer stories with more opportunity to delve into the plot. Kate Burkholder fans will want to pick this up while waiting for the next full-length offering from the author.
PREMIUM

To the Dark

The third “Simon Westow” mystery, following The House Girl, is for readers who appreciate realistic historical atmosphere and details of the sometimes grim life in a 19th-century factory town. Fans of Jeri Westerson’s “Crispin Guest” series will appreciate the mystery and ambiance.

The Good Sister

Hepworth’s latest (after The Mother-in-Law) is written from one sister’s perspective with the other’s thoughts in diary form. It’s a warped tale of twisted memories and skewed perceptions that will make fans of psychological thrillers say, “Wow, I didn’t see that coming.”
PREMIUM

Every Vow You Break

Swanson’s (Eight Perfect Murders) new novel is a good match with Lucy Foley’s psychological wedding thriller, The Guest List. Readers will bask in the creepiness of being stranded on a remote island, considering how far some might go to punish those who break sacred promises.
PREMIUM

Legacy of Death

Book two in this series is a slow-paced, old-fashioned account of estate life in Victorian England. The mystery takes second place to the social commentary about education, social conditions, and class. Only for those interested in the living conditions in late–1800s England.

Serpentine

Readers will keep turning the pages to fit the pieces of the puzzle together in this twisty, complex “Alex Delaware” title (after The Museum of Desire). Delaware and Sturgis are always smart and entertaining, and, with a bit of assistance from Blanche the French bulldog and Robin, Alex’s significant other, they will follow the serpentine path to a surprising solution.
PREMIUM

Murder with a View

Readers who appreciate house-flipping television shows and country music will love this exploration of Nashville. A nosy pet and great human characters make this a worthy buy.
PREMIUM

The Breaker

Fans of Petrie’s previous “Ash” novels and Lee Child’s “Jack Reacher” series will fly through this exciting story and wait eagerly for the next installment.

The Wife Upstairs

With an even darker twist, this novel delivers a one-of-a-kind take on a well-known gothic tale. In addition to the suspenseful story line, the distorted love triangle and the impassivity of the Thornfield residents will have readers feeling simultaneously discombobulated and fulfilled. Recommended for all library mystery collections.
PREMIUM

Leave No Trace

Fans of the series and fans of dog-focused mysteries will enjoy this outing with plenty of details of the workings of search dog teams as well as lots of local and historical color.

Before She Disappeared

Fans of this incredible author, police procedurals, timely immigrant stories, strong determined women, and tales that are not tied up with a pretty bow at the end will not be able to get enough of this intense page-turner.
PREMIUM

Finlay Donovan Is Killing It

Readers can pick up YA author Cosimano’s (Seasons of the Storm) fun adult debut and put it down again without losing the story. Adults and high school readers will enjoy this breezy romp.
PREMIUM

Smoke

Readers will need to pay careful attention to keep all of Ide’s players straight, but the gritty action and sardonic humor will be sure to grab all IQ fans. Libraries with the previous four installments will want this one.
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