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Mystery Tropes + What I Look for in a Mystery

Goodreads is currently celebrating the best mysteries and thrillers! I read through a lot of their articles and looked at the book recs. I thought one article in particular was interesting! They broke it down into the different mystery/thriller tropes that are popular like amnesia, the locked room, etc.

I found that really only one of their listed tropes was one I really enjoy – the inheritance trope. I love a good mystery or thriller about a mystery family member leaving a large inheritance to the character. The character always finds out something crazy about the family member and starts to piece together a mystery that goes back generations! Love those ones! I find I like those tropes in scary movies as well.

However, I feel like I like so many others that the goodreads article didn’t mention which got me thinking about it. What do I like? I started looking though all my books and seeing which ones I liked vs. didn’t like and WHY!

Check out the goodreads article here!

So this is what I came up with + some recommendations 😊


Sherlock Retelling Mystery

So these may be the all time favorite types of mysteries. I love a good mystery and I just really gravitate towards Sherlock style mysteries. I think maybe this is because I like the fast paced, kind of eccentric detective. I love how Sherlock does deductions about everything and is so genius when it comes to solving mysteries!! The books below are all retellings and have so many of those amazing Sherlock aspects to them 🔎

  • A Study in Charlotte (Charlotte Holmes #1) by Brittany Cavallaro
  • Truly Devious (Truly Devious #1)by Maureen Johnson
  • A Study in Scarlet Women (Lady Sherlock #1) by Sherry Thomas

Historical Mystery

I LOVE historical fiction so it would only make sense that I really like mysteries that are set in some time in history! When it comes to these types of mysteries I find myself reading more women led stories. I really enjoy the mysteries that are in history where women take the lead (when they maybe shouldn’t be) an go against the status quo. These books I listed do exactly that! They are such fun mysteries that focus on a historical period and the women are the main characters! 💃🏻

  • A Curious Beginning (Veronica Speedwall #1) by Deanna Raybourn
  • A Spy in the House (Agency #1) by Y.S Lee

Cozy Mystery

I feel like a lot of people like cozy mysteries but wont admit it haha. I love these style of mysteries. They are light and fun but always have a really interesting, different mystery. I recently watched a booktube video about tropes and cozy mysteries were mentioned. I liked what was said about not having to have murder and gore to be a good mystery. While a lot of cozy mysteries are total murder mysteries they are not super descriptive or completely focused on murder. I always like to have a cozy mystery to read! (Also – if the mystery has some kind of paranormal or magic aspect to it, it’s even better!) 👻

  • Mimi Lee Gets a Clue (A Sassy Cat mystery #1) by Jennifer Chow
  • Witch is When it All Began (A Witch P.I mystery #1) by Adele Abbott
  • Night of the Living Deed (A Haunted Guesthouse mystery #1) by E.J. Copperman

Inheritance Mystery

As I mentioned above, this trope was in the goodreads article. I totally agree that this is a popular theme for mystery books and movies. I do love these and always find these ones to be more spooky for some reason. I like to solve the mystery with the character and I find these types of mysteries to be so much more complicated! They always keep me on my toes which is a big reason I enjoy these ones so much!! 💰

  • The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware
  • The Bookshop of Yesterdays by Amy Meyerson

What do you like in a mystery? Do you like lighter ones or do you go for the super detailed, gory murder mystery? Have you read any of the books I posted about?

9 thoughts on “Mystery Tropes + What I Look for in a Mystery

  1. I love all mysteries. There’s nothing like a good cozy but I also enjoy ones with never ending thrills and chills, like a mind blowing psychological thriller or other suspenseful reads ❤️

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    1. I do enjoy a good suspenseful read! However, I find those one always take so much out of me! So I prefer the lighter ones more often!!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. If you like a good Sherlock Holmes story? James Lovegrove has written quite a lot, including a Cosmic Horror Cthulhu/Holmes cross over series.

    He’s an author well worth checking out.

    I love a good locked room mystery, personally 🙂

    Like

  3. I love all of these as well! Though I don’t like the inheritance one as much, but it’s still pretty good! And I think you’re the first person I know who has mentioned The Agency!!! That series was the best historical fic mystery that I’ve read, and I honestly can’t wait to read Veronica Speedwell. I’ve heard so many great things about that series too.
    Great post, and happy reading ❤

    Liked by 1 person

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