Mystery Books

Mystery Movies

Mystery Authors

The Best Mystery Books - Top 100


In 1941, Howard Haycraft compiled a list of detective stories for a book entitled Murder for Pleasure: The Life and Times of the Detective Story. The list was prepared for “unpretentious detective story fans who may care to assemble for their own pleasure ‘cornerstone’ libraries of the best and most influential writing in the medium.” Ellery Queen (the writing team of Frederic Dannay and Manfred B. Lee) revised the Haycraft list several times expanding it to include a broader range of crime and mystery fiction. The list below is the final revision and includes books from 1748 to 1952. Any entry followed by an * indicates it was added by Ellery Queen.

Whose Body?

Dorothy Sayers Lord Peter Wimsey novel 1923
The Eight Strokes of the Clock

Maurice Leblanc series 1922
The Red House Mystery

A.A. Milne 1922
The Grey Room

Eden Phillpotts 1921
Call Mr. Fortune

H. C. Bailey Reggie Fortune shorts 1920
The Cask

Freeman Wills Crofts novel 1920
The Mysterious Affair At Styles

Agatha Christie Hercule Poirot Novel 1920

Sapper 1920
Tutt And Mr Tutt

Arthur Train 1920
The Great Impersonation

E. Phillips Oppenheim novels 1920
The Middle Temple Murder

JS Fletcher 1918
Uncle Abner

Melville Davisson Post 1918
His Last Bow

Arthur Conan Doyle collections 1917
Limehouse Nights

Thomas Burke 1916
The Thirtynine Steps

John Buchan 1915
Max Carrados

Ernest Bramah 1914
The Lone Wolf

Louis Joseph Vance 1914
The Valley of Fear

Arthur Conan Doyle novels 1914
Trent's Last Case

E. C. Bentley novel 1913
The Lodger

Marie Belloc Lowndes 1913
The Singing Bone

R. Austin Freeman short stories 1912
The Silent Bullet

Arthur B Reeve 1912
The Innocence Of Father Brown

G. K. Chesterton collections 1911
The Eye of Osiris

R. Austin Freeman novels 1911
The Extraordinary Adventures of Arsene Lupin Gentleman Burglar

Maurice Leblanc series 1910

Maurice Leblanc series 1910
At The Villa Rose

AEW Mason 1910
The Achievements Of Luther Trant

William & Edwin Balmer MacHarg 1910
The Old Man In The Corner

Baroness Orczy 1909
The Clue

Carolyn Wells 1909
John Thorndyke's Cases

R. Austin Freeman novels 1909
Through The Wall

Cleveland Moffett 1909
The Mystery Of Dr Fu

Sax Rohmer 1908
The Gentle Grafter

O Henry 1908
The Perfume Of The Woman In Black

Gaston Leroux 1908
The Red Thumb Mark

R. Austin Freeman novels 1907
The Thinking Machine

Jacques Futrelle 1907
The Secret Agent

Joseph Conrad 1907
The Circular Staircase

Mary Roberts Rinehart Miss Cornelia Van Gorder 1907
The Man Who Was Thursday

G. K. Chesterton novels 1907
The Mystery of the Yellow Room

Gaston Leroux novels 1907
The Triumphs Of Eugene Valmont

Robert Barr 1906
Tracks In The Snow

GR Benson 1906
The Scarlet Pimpernell

Baroness Orczy 1905
The Return of Sherlock Holmes

Arthur Conan Doyle collections 1905
The Riddle Of The Sands

Erskine Childers 1903
The Hound of the Baskervilles

Arthur Conan Doyle novels 1902
The Amateur Cracksman

E. W. Hornung 1899

Bram Stoker 1897
Prince Zaleski

MP Shiel 1895