Mystery Books

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The Best Mystery Books - Top 100

Lehman's Recommended Detective Novels and Stories


In his book, The Perfect Murder: A study in Detection (1989), David Lehman provides a list of recommended titles. They "were chosen for their importance in the evolution of the mystery genre or simply for the pleasure they reliably give; in many cases, both reasons apply."

Verdict Of Twelve

Raymond Postgate 1940
The Big Sleep

Raymond Chandler Philip Marlowe novel 1939
The Reader is Warned

John Dickson Carr Sir Henry Merrivale novel as carter dickson 1939
The Fashion in Shrouds

Margery Allingham novels 1938
The Beast Must Die

Nicholas Blake 1938
The Crooked Hinge

John Dickson Carr Dr. Gideon Fell' novel 1938
The Judas Window (Also published as: The Crossbow Murder)

John Dickson Carr Sir Henry Merrivale novel as carter dickson 1938
The Burning Court

John Dickson Carr novel 1937
HAMLET REVENGE!

Michael Innes novel 1937
Thou Shell Of Death

Nicholas Blake 1936
Double Indemnity

James M. Cain 1936
Overture To Death

Ngaio Marsh 1936
The Three Coffins (UK Title: The Hollow Man)

John Dickson Carr Dr. Gideon Fell' novel 1935
The Abc Murders

Agatha Christie Hercule Poirot Novel 1935
Murder On The Orient Express

Agatha Christie Hercule Poirot Novel 1934
The Chinese Orange Mystery

Ellery Queen Ellery Queen novel 1934
Murder Must Advertise

Dorothy Sayers Lord Peter Wimsey novel 1933
The Glass Key

Dashiell Hammett novel 1931
The Maltese Falcon

Dashiell Hammett novel 1930
Strong Poison

Dorothy Sayers Lord Peter Wimsey novel 1930
The Poisoned Chocolates Case

Anthony Berkeley Roger Sheringham novels 1929
Red Harvest

Dashiell Hammett novel 1929
The Murder Of Roger Ackroyd

Agatha Christie Hercule Poirot Novel 1926
The Wisdom Of Father Brown

G. K. Chesterton collections 1914
Trent's Last Case

E. C. Bentley novel 1913
The Innocence Of Father Brown

G. K. Chesterton collections 1911
The Man Who Was Thursday

G. K. Chesterton novels 1907
The Red Thumb Mark

R. Austin Freeman novels 1907
The Club of Queer Trades

G. K. Chesterton collections 1905
The Hound of the Baskervilles

Arthur Conan Doyle novels 1902
The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes

Arthur Conan Doyle collections 1893
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

Arthur Conan Doyle collections 1892
A Study in Scarlet

Arthur Conan Doyle novels 1887
THE MOONSTONE

Wilkie Collins novels 1868
Tales

Edgar Allan Poe 1845
The Talented Mr

Patricia Highsmith
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