Blanche’s Book Club: A Whodunit reading guide.

I never really thought I was a fan of whodunits; I have nothing against them, but it’s just not a genre I have been particularly drawn to. Until I read “The Perfect Couple” by Elin Hilderbrand a few weeks ago (you can read my full review here).

It got me thinking, what other whodunits are out there? The answer is… there’s a TON, of course. 

But, I sifted through the search results and lists and came up with some titles and some series that look good to me. If you have recommendations, I’d love to hear them. 

And PS. I know Agatha Christie is the whodunit master. However, she has written so many books, I have no idea where to begin. If you’ve read anything from her and could lend a tip, I’d very much appreciate it! 

Let’s get into it:

‘One of Us is Lying’ by Karen M. McManus 

In this teen thriller, a student ends up dead. Which one of his classmates did it? The twist is, while trying to figure out who would want him dead, investigators find a plot the victim created… one that would kill off all the suspects. What!? 

I’ll admit, I was kind of surprised to see a whodunit in the teen category, but why not? I love plots that are based at school or on campus. 

‘An Unwanted Guest’ by Shari Lapena 

The setting is really what made me choose this one: a remote cabin in the snowy mountains… 

It’s supposed to be a romantic getaway. The original plan for the guests is to ski, light a fire, get cozy… but then a blizzard hits and someone ends up dead. Because, naturally! 

Since no one can leave, that adds another layer of spoooooooky. 

‘Stranger in the Lake’ by Kimberly Belle

I actually attended a virtual author event with Kimberly Belle and she talked specifically about this book — it sounds so good (but scary)! 

This takes place in a small town, and everyone is a buzz when a young woman marries a rich widower.

So, you can imagine what everyone starts saying when a woman’s body is discovered in the lake behind their house… the same place his ex-wife drowned. YIIKKKESSSSS. 

The even creepier part is, the wife recognizes the woman — she was talking to her husband — but the husband is totally denying it. 

‘The Blackbird Season’ by Kate Moretti

Trouble starts when 1,000 dead birds fall onto a baseball field in a small town in Pennsylvania. 

And while, people in the town start pointing fingers to figure out who’s to blame for the bird debacle, someone they all know goes missing. 

The police only have one suspect: the missing woman’s husband. But he’s got people on his side working to prove his innocence… but is he to blame?

The Rose Strickland Mystery Series by Terri L. Austin 

One thing I’ve noticed about whodunits… there’s a TON of series out there! On one hand, that’s pretty cool because I like really getting to know and follow characters, but on the other hand, it’s a little intimidating. 

I chose this series because I like the core premise: Rose Strickland is a college student and a waitress at a diner. Love it. 

In book 1, her best friend disappears. By book 2, she’s a crime-solving bad-ass. Okay, not really, but kind of! 

‘One Night Gone’ by Tara Laskowski 

The story begins when Maureen is lured to a small beach town to get away and relax… but she disappears. 

Thirty years later, Allison is given the chance to house sit in that same small beach town. And she learns about Maureen’s disappearance. Allison is determined to uncover the secrets of this small town… and they are DARK. 

The Sam Clair Series by Judith Flanders 

Samantha “Sam” Clair is a book editor in London… SOLD. 

All is well at the office until the police show up asking lots of questions about a mysterious package that’s been delivered. 

A quote about the book says it’s funny and it travels through London and Paris, which I am totally here for. 

‘Big Summer’ by Jennifer Weiner

I read this book over the summer and wow did I devour it — it’s so good (read my full review here)! 

The lead is a social media influencer and she’s invited to an old friend’s wedding… only the bride ends up dead the night before she’s supposed to get married. 

There’s all sorts of twists and turns and even a touch of romance. I loved this one!

‘The Mother-in-Law” by Sally Hepworth 

Lucy has always kept her relationship with her mother-in-law at a distance. But, things get dicey when she (the mother-in-law) ends up dead. 

There is a suicide note that says she didn’t want to live any longer with cancer, but an autopsy reveals there is no cancer. What gives?

The Strange Truth Series by Maggie Thrash

This is just a two-book series (as of right now), but it’s got high school students at the center of it, and I just cannot resist. 

In book one, the lead cheerleader dresses herself in the mascot’s costume and jumps into the river.

But why? 

‘The Last House Guest’ by Megan Miranda 

This story takes place in Maine, among two best friends. They’ve spent many summers together, only this summer, one of them ends up dead. 

While the police say its a suicide, the surviving friend just doesn’t believe that.

Something is up and she’s going to figure it out. 

‘When No One is Watching’ by Alyssa Cole

I read this one pretty recently as I kept seeing it on all kinds of book lists. I was a little scared to read it, but it wasn’t too scary (I still jumped at a few parts)

You can read my full review of it here — but basically, it takes place in Brooklyn where gentrification is in full swing. 

But there seems to be more than just upgrades and simple changes happening. People are disappearing, shops are changing, cops are more present… and people are dying. 

‘The Perfect Couple’ by Elin Hilderbrand

I couldn’t end this list without adding the book that started it all. I’m tell you, this book is SO good! 

This is also another wedding-ish whodunit and it takes place on Nantucket (because, Elin). The bride’s best friend ends up dead the night before the wedding and wow, I went through every scenario trying to solve the mystery. 

That concludes my list! What are some of your favorite mysteries? 

For more book recommendations, be sure to subscribe to the blog (look to the right) and follow me on Goodreads @thebitterlemon – where I share more of my book picks. Need help with your blog? I can help with all of your digital marketing efforts – just let me know!

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