The Ten Best Mystery Books of All Time 

Nothing beats reading a good mystery novel. There have been many great mystery books and various others have become go-to writers over the decades. We decided to make a list of the ten best mystery books of all time to see which books have captured our minds and hearts. Keep reading to find out which ten we picked. 

This list is going to be more so my picks than the best overall because mystery books are hard to judge. While I will include some books that I believe deserve to be here, it doesn’t mean that they are the only right choices. You can see our full list of the best mystery books here. The ten books that made it onto this list can be replaced with a bunch of other great mystery books and I wouldn’t disagree.  

The Ten Best Mystery Books of All Time 
The Ten Best Mystery Books of All Time 

The Ten Best Mystery Books of All Time 

  1. Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie  
  2. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn  
  3. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson  
  4. The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco  
  5. The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle  
  6. The Alienist by Caleb Carr  
  7. The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett  
  8. Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane  
  9. The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie  
  10. The Secret History by Donna Tartt  

Classics and Modern Mysteries

Two authors that had to be included on this list are Arthur Conan Doyle and Agatha Christie. Two of Christie’s books made it on the list and a few more could have also made it. These books are the less controversial ones and I am sure they will make most lists. 

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson are going to be turn heads. Even then, I believe their impact and popularity make them deserving of their spot on the list. You can replace them with books and authors that you like and I would totally understand. 

The next three books on the list were personal favorites of mine and really good books in my opinion. The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett, Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane, and The Secret History by Donna Tartt are three great novels that many people including me hold dear.  


That is all for out ten best mystery books of all time list. Which books should have made the list? Let us know in the comments below. Until next time, happy reading!

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9 thoughts on “The Ten Best Mystery Books of All Time 

  1. Anca Nicolescu says:

    There are some other great Scandinavian authors worth noting in the thriller genre, such as Soren Sveistrup and Lars Kepler, for example

  2. Kate Brand says:

    You have to add one book that got all the senior citizen ladies hooked on mysteries, The Secret of the Old Clock (Nancy Drew series).

    1. lindsay j livingston says:

      Not one of my favourite mystery authors are on this list. And most of this list is authors I don’t like.

    2. Anonymous says:

      Kate Wilhelm: Unbiden Truth
      John Dunning: Booked to Die
      David Hewson:Sacred Cut
      Cara Black:Murder below Montpaness
      Arturo Perezz Revertre: The Fencing Master
      Charles Finch: An Old Betrayal

  3. Rob McKee says:

    Great list! I would have included Raymond Chandler.
    Would Douglas Adams Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency count?

    1. Sally says:

      I always thought The Moonstone and Woman in White were the classics.

  4. B. J. Yates says:

    Where is JosephineTey? Besides The Daughter of time, there is her great series of mysteries!


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