The 10 Best Political Thrillers to TBR

Politics is naturally a high-stakes field, since one small decision can affect the lives of thousands–and that’s even more true when it comes to the best political thrillers! These political thrillers look at how global events can affect countries and their political systems, and the people who have to make big decisions for thousands of people.

American Spy by Lauren Wilkinson

Set in the late 1980s and early 1990s, this book follows Marie, a young Black woman working for the FBI when she’s recruited by the CIA to spy on the president of Burkina Faso. She agrees, but before long she finds herself actually agreeing with her mark rather than her own government. And when the Americans make a move against the current government in Burkina Faso, she has to decide where her loyalties lie.

Who is Vera Kelly? by Rosalie Knecht

Vera Kelly is a spy working with the CIA in the 1960s. She’s stationed in Buenos Aires, and spends her days getting close to radical student groups and transcribing wire taps, until the day a coup rocks the city. The CIA pulls out, leaving her with no way home, and Vera knows that she’s going to have to try and get out of the country quietly–but she has to move quickly because she’s in possession of some very important information. Bonus: the sequel, Vera Kelly is Not a Mystery, also has a political plot.

The President is Missing by James Patterson and Bill Clinton

Who better to write a story about the high-pressure job of being a president other than a former U.S. president and one of the bestselling thriller writers of all time? This novel is about our country in crisis, and what happens when rumors of espionage and cyber warfare have infiltrated the Cabinet, only for the president to go missing as the suspicion falls on him.

A Spy in the Struggle by Aya de Leon

Yolanda has finally made it as a lawyer in a high-powered NYC firm…just in time for the FBI to raid them for illegal activities. Yolanda happily turns in her corrupt boss, and in order to get back her freedom, she agrees to go undercover in CA to infiltrate a supposedly radical African-American activist group. But once she”s there, she isn’t so certain that she disagrees with what they’re trying to do–but not betraying her true values and keeping the FBI happy won’t be easy.

The Emperor of Ocean Park by Stephen L Carter

This is an older book, but notable because of its plot! It’s about Talcott Garland, a law professor who is shocked when his father is found dead. His father is a federal judge, and at one time was even a Supreme Court nominee, so Talcott thinks it’s likely his father might have been murdered. And when he begins finding clues his father left, he soon finds himself in some very, very dangerous territory.

The Terminal List by Jack Carr

James Reece is a Navy SEAL whose record is impeccable, but on his latest deployment is devastated when his entire team is killed in an ambush. Bereft, he returns home, only for his family to be killed on the very day of their reunion. Reece does some digging, and find that his brothers-in-arms weren’t merely surprised by the enemy–they were sold out by their own government, and Reece was supposed to be among them. Now, with nothing left to lose, he’ll avenge everyone he’s lost and get to the bottom of why they were sold out in the first place.

Transcription by Kate Atkinson

Juliet Armstrong is a government worker, a producer for the BBC in 1950s England, when she steps out one day and runs into an old colleague from nearly ten years earlier. He acts as though he doesn’t recognize her, but Juliet knows that there is no way any of them could forget their years in London during the Blitz, spying on Nazi sympathizers in relative boredom until a deadly misstep sent them scrambling to cover up their actions. Juliet would like to believe this encounter is a coincidence…but she knows it’s not.

Codename Villanelle by Luke Jennings

The basis of the Emmy-award winning TV series Killing Eve, this series of novellas is about an MI-5 analyst who suspects that a female assassin is working internationally, killing political enemies and going mostly undetected. And when she turns out to be right, she attracts the attention of the villainess herself, leading to a tense cat-and-mouse chase across continents.

Drone Threat by Mike Maden

For another thriller involving the highest office of the last, pick up this novel about what happens when a cheap drone manages to land on the White House, carrying a small package and a ludicrous demand that the president fly the ISIS flag above the White House or suffer the consequences. The president refuses, of course, and the nation suffers deadly drone attacks that only an elite drone squad can trace and stop.

Every Last Breath by Juno Rushdan

Maddox is a covert operative who is given a monumental task: neutralize a bioweapon that could kill thousands. She’s a capable woman who is on the job at once, but she needs the help of Cole, the only person she trusts. Unfortunately for her, Cole is her former lover she thought was dead, and he can’t forgive Maddox for moving on with her life. Now the two have to work together against a ticking clock to save lives.

Want more great political thrillers and related books? Here are some of the best mystery recommendations, our round up of domestic thrillers, and a great list of mystery book subscriptions services.

And if you’re looking for more political thrillers, sign up for TBR: Tailored Book Recommendations! TBR is a personalized book recommendation service that send you books you’ll love to read. Here’s how it works: Simply fill out the reader survey and let us know what you want more of–such as political thrillers–and what you’re not keen on. Then, an expert Biblioligist will read your responses and recommend three books just for you. Receive your recommendation letter via email in about two weeks, or opt to receive your recommendations as brand new hardcovers from our partner, Print: A Bookstore in Portland, ME in about three to four weeks. Learn more and sign up now!

15 Of The Best Romantic Movies Based on Books

Readers love to say that the book was better, but let’s be real: Books make some pretty good movies! If you’re a fan of all things romance, then you’ll definitely want to catch these romantic movies based on books, on Netflix and other streaming services! We kept our focus on some of the best movie adaptations of the last couple of years, and the books they’re based on. Here we go!

Can You Keep a Secret? based on Can You Keep a Secret? by Sophie Kinsella

This 2019 movie follows a woman who is afraid of flying and ends up spilling all her secrets to her seat mate on a long flight. So imagine her horror when she walks into work the next day and discovers that he’s the owner of the company she works for…and he seems utterly charmed by her, despite knowing her most embarrassing secrets.

Let It Snow based on Let It Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle

This holiday-themed large cast Netflix romcom is about a group of interconnected teens who find their lives tangling in interesting ways on Christmas Eve, as a snow storm falls on their small town. It’s based on the connected novellas by three YA powerhouse authors!

Five Feet Apart based on Five Feet Apart by Rachael Lippincott

In this romantic movie, Stella has cystic fibrosis and finds herself in the hospital with Will, also a CF patient who is battling a bacterial infection. The two grow closer, but they can’t physically be more than five feet apart–not that the distance will keep them apart.

Love, Simon based on Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

Simon is a closeted teen who isn’t quite ready to come out to his friends or family, but who is secretly emailing with another boy at his school named Blue, whom he is falling for. The movie is based off of Becky Albertalli’s bestselling novel, and there’s even a spin-off series on Hulu called Love, Victor.

After We Collided based on After We Collided by Anna Todd

This movie is the sequel to After (also based on a book), and it follows a young couple named Tessa and Hardin who meet and fall in love in college and the struggles that their relationship faces.

Chemical Hearts based on Our Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland

Henry is a hopeless romantic who wants to be a writer, and is upset when his teacher makes him share the newspaper editor position with a new transfer student, who is surly, but slowly warms up to him, even though it seems as though she’s keeping secrets in this AmazonPrime original.

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before and P.S. I Still Love You, based on To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before and P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han

These Netflix movies are the romantic and dreamy story of Lara Jean Song Covey, a hopeless romantic who writes letters to all her crushes but never sends them–but when they accidentally get put in the mail, suddenly she had to contend with multiple boys vying for her attentions.

Emma based on Emma by Jane Austen

In this delightful new adaptation, Emma Woodhouse is a wealthy young woman who delights in arranging the romantic lives of those around her–but when her latest attempts go awry, Emma has to face the fact that her meddling has consequences.

All the Bright Places based on All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

Violet and Theodore are two teens who are hurting after their own tragedies. They come together thanks to a school project  where they have to investigate the wonders of their home state, Indiana, and find healing in their relationship along the way.

Virgin River based on the Virgin River series by Robyn Carr

This Netflix series follows Mel Monroe, who takes a job as a a midwife and nurse practitioner in a small town in California. Small town living isn’t quite what she imagined, and Mel learns that she must confront her past in order to truly feel at home in Virgin River.

Crazy Rich Asians based on Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan

Rachel Chu and her boyfriend Nicholas are blissfully happy, and decide to take the next step in their relationship by traveling to Singapore to visit Nick’s family. Rachel is shocked to find that Nick’s family isn’t just rich, but crazy rich, and they’re not at pleased that their son is dating Rachel.

The Will based on The Will by Kristen Ashley 

Based off of a romance novel, this book is about Josephine and Jake, two people from the same town who’ve led very different lives but are united by the death of Josephine’s grandmother, Lydia, who includes a rather unconventional final wish for the two of them in her will.

Sweet Magnolias based on the Sweet Magnolias series by Sherryl Wood

Set in the fictional Southern town of Serenity, this Netflix series is about three lifelong friends who call themselves the Sweet Magnolias and who love and support each other through life’s trials and tribulations, including divorce, new love, careers, parenting, and more. 

The Kissing Booth 1 & 2 based on The Kissing Booth and Going the Distance by Beth Reekles

These movies follow Elle, a high school student who is trying to resist a crush on her best friend’s older brother but finds it impossible when they kiss at a kissing booth for the school’s fundraiser. The second movie is about the challenges Elle’s new relationship faces when they go long distance.

Tell It to the Bees based on Tell It to the Bees by Fiona Shaw

Set in the 1950’s, this movie is about a doctor who returns to her small town to take over her father’s practice, and offers shelter to a young mother and her son who are in need of a home. But both begin to face intense scrutiny and censure as they fall in love with each other.


Want more great romance recommendations? Check out this list of the best romance subscription services! And if horror movies are more your speed, then we’ve got a list of great horror movies based on books!

Need more great book-to-movie recommendations? Sign up for TBR: Tailored Book Recommendations! TBR is a personalized book recommendation service that send you books you’ll love to read. Here’s how it works: Simply fill out the reader survey and let us know what you want more of–such as books being made into movies–and what you’re not keen on. Then, an expert Biblioligist will read your responses and recommend three books just for you. Receive your recommendation letter via email in about two weeks, or opt to receive your recommendations as brand new hardcovers from our partner, Print: A Bookstore in Portland, ME in about three to four weeks. Learn more and sign up now!

Normal People Book Club Questions + Reading Guide

Normal People by Sally Rooney is one of the hottest books for book clubs right now, thanks to the Hulu adaptation of the book! If it’s your turn to host the book club discussion, don’t fear! We’ve got your Normal People book club discussion questions and summary right here!

Normal People Book Summary

Sally Rooney explores friendship and both the power and tenuous nature of human connection in this novel about Marianne and Connell, two teens who’ve grown up in a small town but they’re not friends. Connell is popular and well-liked, and Marianne is a loner who lurks on the edges. When a chance conversation occurs between then, they have no idea that it’s the start of something more.

A year later, both Connell and Marianne are studying at Trinity College, but their roles are reversed: Connell can’t seem to fit in and struggles with money, and Marianne has finally hit her stride. Their friendship endures, even through their separate studies, disappointments, other friends, and new experiences. As Marianne and Connell come of age and grow into the people they’re meant to be, they must also decide how far they’re willing to go for each other.

Normal People Book Club Questions

Discuss how Connell and Marianne form their own sense of self-image. Connell seems very dependent on what other people think at the beginning of the book. How does this contribute to your perception of his character? Marianne is also dependent on other people’s opinions of her, namely her family, who is abusive and unloving. How does this contribute to your perception of her character?

Do you think that Connell takes advantage of Marianne’s feelings toward him in the beginning? How does Connell’s attention make Marianne feel?

Which character did you identify more with? Did you prefer one character over the other?

Do you think Connell really means it the first time he tells Marianne he loves her? What effect does this profession of love have on Marianne?

Why do you think that Connell and Marianne are drawn to each other initially? What is the basis of their attraction later on, when they’re at school?

Discuss the class issues that come into sharper focus once Marianne and Connell go to Trinity. How are Connell and Marianne each perceived? How do they perceive class and status?

Why do you think that Connell is uncomfortable with Marianne’s new circle? Does it have to do with money and privilege, or is there something more to it?

Love is a major theme throughout this novel. Do you think there’s something special about young love, or first love? Is there anything special about Connell and Marianne’s connection? What might that be?

Compare and contract Connell and Marianne’s other relationships with the one that they share. Are their other relationships healthier, unhealthier, or approximately the same?

Do you think that Marianne and Connell’s relationship could have turned out differently if they had been able to communicate better? If they had actually moved in together? Do you think they were ever really “together” despite the lack of labels on their unconventional relationship?

How do Connell and Marianne change throughout the book? How does their relationship evolve?

Do you think it’s a good thing that Connell and Marianne take a break from each other? How did you feel about the ending? 

Discuss the significance of the title Normal People. What makes a person normal, according to each of the characters? According to your own standards? Do you think Marianne and Connell are normal? Why or why not, and by whose standards?

Do you hope that Sally Rooney will write a sequel? Where do you envision Connell and Marianne in five or ten years’ time?

Did you enjoy Normal People? Would you read another novel written by Sally Rooney?

Have you watched the TV show? Do you plan on watching it?


Want to find more great book club books? We’ve got you covered. Plus, here are some of the best online book subscriptions available.

And if you want more book club book suggestions, sign up for TBR: Tailored Book Recommendations! TBR is a personalized book recommendation service that send you books you’ll love to read. Here’s how it works: Simply fill out the reader survey and let us know what you want more of–such as potential picks for your unique book club–and what you’re not keen on. Then, an expert Biblioligist will read your responses and recommend three books just for you. Receive your recommendation letter via email in about two weeks, or opt to receive your recommendations as brand new hardcovers from our partner, Print: A Bookstore in Portland, ME in about three to four weeks. Learn more and sign up now!

The Best Detective Books to Keep You Up Late at Night

Do you love a good whodunit? A protagonist with an itch to discover the truth, no matter the obstacles? Some of the best detective books in the last five years have featured everything from queer private investigators to ex-cops to detectives trying to find their footing in new locations. If you love detective book series or are looking for a great new female detective to fall in love with, then we’ve got some recommendations for you!

The Roxane Weary Mysteries by Kristen Lepionka

Roxane Weary is a PI who is trying to make ends meet and mourning her cop dad when she lands a case that could make her career–or claim her life. This is a fantastic series that balances the mysteries Weary picks up with her personal life. Start with The Last Place You Look.

The Lady Sherlock series by Sherry Thomas

Sherlock Holmes, but make him a disgraced society lady in Victorian times named Charlotte Holmes, who assumes the Sherlock moniker in order to obscure her identity! These mysteries are deliciously complicated and clever, and you definitely want to read them in order as they do feed into each other. Start with A Study in Scarlet Women.

Detective Betty Rhyzyk series by Kathleen Kent

Betty Rhyzyk is a tough-as-nails Brooklyn cop who relocates to Dallas, TX to be with her girlfriend, and quickly finds that everything is bigger in Texas–the crime, the stakes, the danger. This is a great procedural with a strong female protagonist and has been options by FX! Start with The Dime.

Kopp Sisters Series by Amy Stewart

For an unconventional detective novel, pick up this fictionalized series about real-life sheriff’s deputy Constance Kopp, who became a deputy in 1914 after a gangster began targeting her family. This is a fantastic series that looks at the struggles of women breaking into law enforcement. Start with Girl Waits with Gun.

Detective Esa Khattak and Rachel Getty Mysteries by Ausma Zehanat Khan

Esa Khattak and his partner Rachel Getty work in Canada’s Community Policing Section, which handles some of the most complex and delicate cases involving minority groups, hate crimes, and more. From investigating the death of a political informant to mass shootings, these cases are always high-profile and complicated, and completely relevant. Start with The Unquiet Dead.

The Dublin Murder Squad by Tana French

French is best known for her Dublin Murder Squad series, which stars a new case and a different detective in the squad, although characters tend to make appearances throughout the series. From cold cases to puzzling break-ins turned murders, the detectives uncover the dark side of contemporary Dublin. You can read them order, starting with In the Woods, or jump in anywhere.

The Detective Galileo series by Keigo Higashino

This Japanese detective series stars Manabu Yukawa, aka Detective Galileo, a mathematics professor who is often is called in by the Tokyo police to help them solve some of their more puzzling crimes. Start with The Devotion of Suspect X, which was made into a 2017 film!

Cass Raines Series by Tracey Clark

Cass Raines is an ex-cop living in Chicago who turns to PI work after an injury on the job left her hurt and disillusioned. Her jobs are small at first, but soon she takes on some high-profile cases that only she, someone with a cop’s instincts but outside of law enforcement, can solve. Start with Broken Places.

The Cormac Reilly series by Dervla McTiernan

Cormac Reilly has just moved from Dublin to Galway to be with his girlfriend Emma, who got a fantastic new job. Although he’s a good detective with a solid record, it seems as though he’s unwelcome in Galway, where most of his new coworkers are hostile. But as Reilly works cold cases and runs up against his superiors, he discovers that his new office is quite corrupt. Start with The Ruin

Aaron Falk series by Jane Harper

Aaron Falk is an investigator in Australia, specializing in financial crimes, who seems to be drawn into murder at every turn. There are two books in his series currently–you’ll want to start with The Dry, which sees Falk heading home for the first time in decades to confront a long-kept secret in the wake of his best friend’s family’s murder. Follow it up for Force of Nature.

IQ series by Joe Ide

Isaiah Quintabe, aka IQ is a PI who the people of his neighborhood go to when law enforcement fails them. He may be a high school dropout, but he’s smart and he takes on the cases no one else wants, and a few better paying ones besides. Start with IQ, the first in the series.

Alice Vega series by Louisa Luna

Alice Vega is a PI has a knack for finding people. She’s called when two young girls go missing in Two Girls Down. In order to get to the bottom of the case, she calls in the help of Max Caplan, a disgraced former police officer. In The Janes, two unidentified women are discovered and this time, law enforcement asks Alice for her help.

Highway 59 series by Attica Locke

Starring Darren Matthews, a law school dropout and Black Texas Ranger, Locke’s series looks at the racism, crime, and dark side of living in East Texas, but also the beauty of the place. Start with Bluebird, Bluebird, and follow it up with Heaven, My Home.

The Craftsman Trilogy by Sharon Bolton

Only the first book in this series is out yet, and you’ll have to wait a bit for the next two, but they’re worth getting on your radar! The Craftsman is about Florence Lovelady, who was just a young cop in 1969 when a young girl went missing. The killer was caught, and in 1999 he’s finally died. Florence attends his funeral…but when she finds evidence that the killer might still be active, she’ll have to re-examine everything about the case.

Gemma Woodstock series by Sarah Bailey

In The Dark Lake, Gemma Woodstock is a detective living in a small town when a high school classmate of hers is found murdered, forcing her to take a deeper look into the community secrets that have been hidden for so long. In the sequel, Into the Night, Gemma moves to Melbourne, hoping for a fresh start but finding more death and mystery instead.

Want more fantastic crime and detective books? We recommend…

If you’re looking for even more of the best detective books, sign up for TBR: Tailored Book Recommendations! TBR is a personalized book recommendation service that send you books you’ll love to read. Here’s how it works: Simply fill out the reader survey and let us know what you want more of–such as new detective books for adults–and what you’re not keen on. Then, an expert Biblioligist will read your responses and recommend three books just for you. Receive your recommendation letter via email in about two weeks, or opt to receive your recommendations as brand new hardcovers from our partner, Print: A Bookstore in Portland, ME in about three to four weeks. Learn more and sign up now!

15 Of The Best Romantic Thriller Books to TBR

Do you love your thrillers with a dash of romantic tension? Then you’ve come to the right place! The best romantic suspense novels have danger, high stakes, and the sexual tension to match it. Whether you’re looking for a new series, something historical, or a classic Gothic retelling, we’ve got 15 of the best romantic thriller books just for you!

When No One is Watching by Alyssa Cole

This is a social thriller with a bit of darker twist, about Sydney Green who joins forces with her neighbor Theo to offer historic walking tours of their rapidly gentrifying neighbors, only to begin investigating what’s really happening to her Black neighbors who are moving out of the neighborhood for the suburbs.

A Madness of Sunshine by Nalini Singh

Anahera has just returned to her remote New Zealand town after heartbreak, and finds that little has changed, except that the town now has a single police officer: Will. When a woman goes missing, the two team up to investigate a darker angle of the case that draws them together–and closer to a serial killer.

Jane Doe by Victoria Helen Stone

Jane is a pleasant abut unremarkable employee at the insurance company she works at, and she catches the attention of her manager, Stephen, because she seems easygoing. Malleable. But Jane is anything but that, and as she draws closer to Stephen’s life, her true intentions become clear.

A Spy in the Struggle by Aya de León

Yolanda is a Black woman who beat the odds to become a lawyer and landed a prestigious job at a high-powered NYC law firm–but it all came crashing down when the FBI raided the firm. Yolanda turns in her bosses and cooperates with the FBI, and they decide to send her to infiltrate an African-American “extremist” activist group called Red, Green, and Black. But when a new romance and a complicated conspiracy put her in a tough spot, Yolanda will have to act very carefully.

Hidden by Laura Griffin

Bailey is an investigative reporter who shows up when a woman is found dead in Austin, TX, and she begins asking questions. Lead detective Jacob knows he shouldn’t reveal anything–but his attraction to Bailey is harder to resist. As Bailey continues to pursue the case, their relationship heats up…and soon they find themselves working together to solve a high-stakes case.

The Third Mrs. Durst by Ann Aguirre

Marlena Durst may seem to have it all from the outside, but reality is that she lives in a tightly controlled environment where her every move is tracked by her husband, and punishment for disobedience is harsh. There seems no escaping his control–his first two wives ended up dead after all–unless Marlena can find a way to outsmart him.

A Curious Beginning by Deanna Raybourn

Veronica is an independent woman who is looking forward to a bit of travel without having to report to her spinster aunt, but when she’s nearly kidnapped and she meets Stoker, a natural historian, the two find themselves on the run together, trying to stay one step ahead of a murderer and solve this mystery.

Every Last Breath by Juno Rushdan

Maddox is a strong, capable woman who is given an impossible task to neutralize a dangerous bioweapon, and it pains her to admit that she needs help–but not from just anyone. From Cole, her former lover who she thought was dead, and is pissed that she moved on. Cole would rather fight Maddox each step of the way, but the stakes are too high and they must work together to save thousands of lives.

Jane Steele by Lindsay Faye

Jane Steele has a deadly secret–well, several. Multiple times throughout her life, when ill-intentioned men have tried to take advantage of her, she’s responded in violence. With a few murders under her belt, she now wants to return to her ancestral home, but she’ll have to stay ahead of the law and face its new owner, the brooding Mr. Thornfield, who has secrets of his own.

American Spy by Lauren Wilkinson

Marie is a young, Black FBI officer whose career is going nowhere fast when she’s recruited by the CIA to spy on the president of Burkina Faso. She agrees to the mission, but is surprised when she finds that it’s not hard to gain his trust–she genuinely like him, and he is intrigued by her. But with American meddling only increasing, Marie must decide where her loyalties lie.

The Wife Upstairs by Rachel Hawkins

In this callback to classic Gothic suspense, Hawkins tells the story of Jane, a poor young dog walker in a wealthy neighborhood who has a past she wants to keep secret. When she meets Eddie Rochester, and he falls for her, it seems like her luck is turning around…but Eddie’s first wife Bea drowned not too long ago, and Jane is haunted by her memory.

The Lady Sherlock series by Sherry Thomas

Charlotte Holmes is a disgraced society lady who goes by the pseudonym Sherlock Holmes in order to solve some truly complicated and high-stakes cases–and she’s not above having a romantic dalliance when it suits her. This is a fun and complex mystery series with some great romance on the side.

Verity by Colleen Hoover

Lowen is a struggling writer when she receive a gig that could bail her out: Ghostwrite novels for famous author Verity Crawford, who is permanently injured and unable to finish them herself. Lowen agrees and while visiting Verity’s home and speaking with her husband Jeremy, she uncovers a secret manuscript full of Verity’s confessions. She’s uncertain whether to share the manuscript with Jeremy, especially as she finds herself falling for him.

Lady in the Lake by Laura Lippman

When Maddie leaves her husband and becomes determined to strike out on her own as a newspaper journalist, she underestimates how hard it is to start over as a housewife in the 1960’s. But when she stumbles upon a murder, she’s able to leverage what she saw into a job. Now she just needs a story to launch her career–but she latches onto one story that might put her in danger. This is a great historical thriller, with a secret love interest.

Extreme Honor by Piper J. Drake

Starring a war veteran and combat dog trainer named David, this book is about the one dog he can’t get through to–and the dog whisperer named Lyn who manages to work with the dog. David is drawn to Lyn, but when her work with the dog puts her in danger, the two humans will have to work to protect the dog who brought them together.

Want more great book recommendations? Check out:

And if you still want more great romantic thriller books, sign up for TBR: Tailored Book Recommendations! TBR is a personalized book recommendation service that send you books you’ll love to read. Here’s how it works: Simply fill out the reader survey and let us know what you want more of–such as romantic suspense novels–and what you’re not keen on. Then, an expert Biblioligist will read your responses and recommend three books just for you. Receive your recommendation letter via email in about two weeks, or opt to receive your recommendations as brand new hardcovers from our partner, Print: A Bookstore in Portland, ME in about three to four weeks. Learn more and sign up now!

The Best Young Adult Book Recommendations of 2020

With so many excellent young adult books hitting shelves in 2020, it can be difficult to know where to start! Never fear, because we’ve got 20 young adult book recommendations to help you navigate the best YA books of 2020! From fantasy to contemporary fiction, fun romance to hard-hitting YA, there’s something for every reader with these young adult book recommendations!

Parachutes by Kelly Yang

Claire is a Shanghai teen suddenly dropped in California for high school, living in a stranger’s house. Dani is less than thrilled when her mom rents out a spare room to Claire, and the two girls attend the same school but avoid each other as much as possible–until a life-changing event sends them on a collision course.

Goodbye From Nowhere by Sara Zarr

Kyle thinks his family is pretty awesome–until he discovers his mom is having an affair and his dad knows all about it. Devastated, Kyle turns to his cousin to try and make sense of this new reality, and reconcile the family he thought he had with reality.

I’ll Be The One by Lyla Lee

Skye is a fat Korean-American and she’s unashamed. But when she tries out for a new K-pop reality TV show and gets on, she has to deal with a lot of fatphobia and ignorance as she works hard to achieve her dreams.

Six Angry Girls by Adrienne Kisner

Raina and Millie have both been burned by the same guy, so they decide to retaliate by forming an all-female mock trial team to take on the guy’s team. It turns out six angry girls with knitting needles and yarn can wreak a lot of havoc.

Late to the Party by Kelly Quindlen

Codi Teller is a lesbian who is more than happy sticking to her comfortable routine with her two queer friends. But when she shows up late to a party and makes a new friend in the host, she ends up becoming a part of a whole new friend group on accident and even finds love–all without telling her best friends.

Punching the Air by Ibi Zoboi and Yusef Salaam

Based on Yusef Salaam’s experience as one of the Exonerated Five, this novel in verse follows a Black teen wrongly accused of a crime he didn’t commit, and how turning to his poetry saves his life.

Loveboat Taipei by Abigail Hing Wen

Ever Wong’s summer plans are upended when she finds herself headed to Loveboat, Taipei–not the academic summer camp she was planning on. Loveboat is more like a teenage free-for-all, where she discovers new friends and new secrets that will prove life-changing.

Furia by Yamile Saied Mendez

Camila is an Argentinian teen living a double life as a dutiful daughter in a strict household, and as a soccer-playing powerhouse on the field. When her team qualifies for a tournament that could open up life-chaning opportunities for Camila, must decide how far she’ll go to achieve her dreams. 

Miss Meteor by Tehlor Mejia Kay and Anna-Marie McLemore

Chicky and Lita are two former best friends who decide to team up and help Lita enter the Miss Meteor pageant in order to prove to their town and themselves that they have what it takes to win in a town where they rarely see themselves accepted.

Darius the Great Deserves Better by Adib Khorram

In this sequel to Darius the Great is Not Okay, Darius has returned home to the States and found his first boyfriend. But when his two very different grandmothers come to visit and his best friend begins ghosting him, Darius struggles with understanding what he deserves.

You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson

Liz can’t wait to leave her small town, but when her college funding falls through she finds herself entering her school’s race for prom queen so that she can get the accompanying scholarship–but then her new crush Mack also enters, and Liz finds the competition heating up in unexpected ways.

Cinderella is Not Dead by Kalynn Bayron

Two hundred years after Cinderella stole the prince’s heart, every girl in the kingdom is required to attend a ball to find a husband–and those who aren’t chosen disappear forever. Sophia would rather marry her female best friend, so she runs away from the ball and meets another girl who will help her bring down the patriarchy.

Felix Ever After by Kacen Callender

Felix is trans and proud, but when another student begins targeting Felix with transphobic hate and dead names him, Felix decides to fight back by catfishing his bully–only, things don’t end up quite the way he expects.

Rent a Boyfriend by Gloria Chao

When Chloe doesn’t want to get engaged to the son of a family friend, she decides to hire Drew, who works for Rent for Your ‘Rents, a fake dating service, to get her parents off her back. But when she starts to actually fall for the real Drew, it’s a big problem because Drew’s parent-approved personality is all a lie.

These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong

Set in 1926 Shanghai, this is a retelling of Romeo and Juliet that recasts the titular characters as two heirs to street gangs locked in a deadly feud. They must set aside their differences to investigate a darkness that could destroy both their gangs.

Mayhem by Estella Laure

In 1987, Mayhem and her mother return to her mother’s beachside hometown and where Mayhem learns the truth about their family: the women possess magic. And when girls begin to go missing on the beach, Mayhem decides to put her newfound talents to use and do something about it.

The Voting Booth by Brandy Colbert

Marva has been waiting weeks for Election Day, and she can’t wait to vote. Duke just wants to vote and move on with his day. But when he’s turned away at his polling place and Marva witnesses this, she decides to help him, and the two undergo a wild adventure to see that Duke can exercise his right to vote.

Girl Serpent Thorn by Melissa Bashardoust

Soraya is a princess whose touch is poison. She spends most of her time secluded away from people, prowling her gardens. But as her twin brother’s wedding day approaches, she must decide what she wants out of life, and if she’ll step out of the shadows.

Grown by Tiffany D. Jackson

Enchanted dreams of becoming a R&B singer, and it seems like her ambitions are about to become reality when legendary singer Korey Fields spots her at an audition. But when Korey ends up dead and Enchanted has blood on her hands, more than one person wants to know the truth about what really happened between them.

Watch Over Me by Nina LaCour

Printz Award-winning author Nina LaCour releases her first novel since We Are Okay, a story of Mina, who has graduated from high school and aged out of the foster care system. She accepts a job at a farm on the coast of Northern California–but she doesn’t expect the place to be haunted.

Want more great YA book recommendations? Check out our best YA book club recommendations, and the best found family YA books! And if you want even more YA in your life, sign up for TBR: Tailored Book Recommendations! TBR is a personalized book recommendation service that send you books you’ll love to read.

Here’s how it works: Simply fill out the reader survey and let us know what you want more of–such as the best new YA books–and what you’re not keen on. Then, an expert Biblioligist will read your responses and recommend three books just for you. Receive your recommendation letter via email in about two weeks, or opt to receive your recommendations as brand new hardcovers from our partner, Print: A Bookstore in Portland, ME in about three to four weeks. Learn more and sign up now!

The Silent Patient Book Club Questions

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides is one of the best thriller books of recent years, and with so many twists and turns and a charming unreliable narrator, it also makes for the perfect book club pick! If your club has picked it for your next meeting, never fear! We’ve got a summary, themes, and The Silent Patient book club questions to help ensure your discussion is a success!

About The Silent Patient

The protagonist of The Silent Patient is Theo Faber, a criminal psychotherapist who helps patients after they’ve committed a crime and tries to set them on a better path through therapy. At the start of the novel Theo is excited because he’s just landed a new job at The Grove, a prestigious private in-patient facility where some of the most complex criminals are house–including Alicia Berenson. She made the papers for murdering her husband, and then refusing the utter a single word in her defense–or any other words at all, for that matter.

Because of this, she’s declared psychologically imcompetent and is now a resident at The Grove, where she continues to refuse to talk to anyone about anything. Theo can’t help but think that maybe he can get through to her, if he’s just given a chance. And he is given that chance–but both Theo and Alicia have secrets, and when those secrets collide, they’re bound to become deadly.

Themes: truth, trust, sanity, boundaries, silencing voices

The Silent Patient Book Club Questions

Did you trust Theo at any point during this book? Why did you initially believe that he wanted to work with Alicia?

Who did you trust in this book, if anyone? Why or why not?

What did you think about the dual timelines? Did you gravitate to one story over the other?

Who did you initially suspect killed Alicia’s husband? Did you find Alicia to be a sympathetic character?

Discuss Alecestis, and the significance of her inclusion in the narrative. How does Alicia use artwork to make sense of her life, both before and after her husband’s murder?

Discuss the setting of The Grove. Did you think it was a positive place for some of the patients, or a prison? How did the setting influence the mood of the entire book?

Compare and contrast Theo with his coworkers. Do you think he was a good therapist, his preoccupation with Alicia notwithstanding?

Did you think Theo, despite his past, had any healthy relationships?

Communication is important in this book–discuss how the characters communicate, whether it’s through the things they say, write, draw, or don’t say.

This book is, in many ways, about the importance of boundaries and the consequences of what happens when people on both sides cross boundaries. Discuss how Theo’s relationship with Alicia compares and contrasts with Theo’s relationship with his own therapist, Ruth.

Did you figure out the twist before it was revealed? How did you feel when you knew the truth?

 Do you think Theo was driven by a genuine desire to help other people? Or were his motivations never completely pure?

Discuss what Alicia meant by saying that both her husband and her father killed her. 

Did Alicia ever feel like a fully developed character to you, or was she only ever seen as someone that other people (men) wanted to influence or control?

Do you consider Theo a hero, villain, or anti-hero? Knowing his entire story, do you feel sympathetic towards him?

What did you think about the ending? Where do you envision the characters ending up?

Would you consider this book a psychological thriller, or a deep dive into character?

Considering the power imbalance between therapists and patients, do you think the repsonibiity is on the therapist to maintain professional boundaries, or is that the responsibility of both parties involved. Is the patient ever “at fault”?

How do you feel about unreliable narrators in general?

Would you read another book written by Alex Michaelides? Why or why not?

Find Your Next Book Club Read

If you enjoyed this guide and are looking for more great book club selections, check out our best book club picks of 2020! Then sign up for TBR: Tailored Book Recommendations! TBR is a personalized book recommendation service that send you books you’ll love to read.

Here’s how it works: Simply fill out the reader survey and let us know what you want more of–such as thrillers for book clubs–and what you’re not keen on. Then, an expert Biblioligist will read your responses and recommend three books just for you. Receive your recommendation letter via email in about two weeks, or opt to receive your recommendations as brand new hardcovers from our partner, Print: A Bookstore in Portland, ME in about three to four weeks. Learn more and sign up now!

Your Sense and Sensibility Book Club Questions + Guide

Sometimes, it’s fun to throw it back by reading classics with your book club! If your group has picked Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen, then we’ve got your Sense and Sensibility book club questions right here, along with a Sense and Sensibility reading guide and some major themes to discuss.

A Sense and Sensibility Reading Guide

Sense and Sensibility was Jane Austen’s first published novel, and it explores how the lives of the Dashwoods are changed forever when their father dies, leaving them with very little money. Mrs. Dashwood and her daughters Elinor, Marianne, and Margaret move into Barton Cottage rather than stay on at their home of Norland Park, which is now owned by Mr. Dashwood’s son from a previous marriage and his odious wife Fanny. The novel follows the two older sisters, Elinor and Marianne, as they acclimate to their new lives–and new positions in society–and each experience a chance at romance and happiness, if they can successfully navigate the emotions and sensibilities of their time.

Themes: Family, loss, class, navigating emotions, emotion vs. reason, romantic attachments

Tips for Reading

Readers unfamiliar with reading novels written in the early 19th century might be unused to the flow and language. It’s important to try and pace yourself–don’t expect that you’ll read this book in a single sitting!–but also make sure you give yourself plenty of time when you pick up the book to allow yourself to be immersed into the world and get used to the style. This is not a novel that is easily read ten minutes at a time.

It might also be useful to understand before you begin reading that society at the time valued sensibility over sense–that is, strong emotions, feelings, and instinct reigned over reasoned thinking. Keep this in mind as you read, as this perspective will reveal Austen’s intent and message in this novel.

Sense and Sensibility Book Club Questions

Discuss the tenuous position of ladies within society, and how the entailment on Norland put the Dashwood ladies into a precarious position. Do you believe the men in their lives could have done more to provide for them? Do you believe that Fanny acted unfairly toward the Dashwoods?

Discuss the role of money in this book–how is it used to reveal character?

Which sister did you gravitate towards the most? Which did you consider to be the heroine of the novel? Or did they both share that duty?

Discuss how Elinor and Marianne each embody the essences of sense, and sensibility. Do you think that each could have benefited from being more like the other?

What were your first impressions of Edward Ferrars? Willoughby? Colonel Brandon?

Did you think that Colonel Brandon’s attraction to Marianne was realistic? Did you think that he and Elinor were, on paper, more suited to each other? Did you find the age difference between Brandon and the Dashwood sisters hard to get past?

Politeness in society was valued over honesty during this time period. Knowing that, what did you think of the Middletons and Mrs. Jennings, and their meddling actions in the Dashwood sisters’ love lives?

What did you think of Lucy Steele? Did you trust her at first, or were you suspicious of her eagerness to befriend Elinor?

Discuss the power of secrets within this novel–both the secrets that are revealed, and the secrets that are kept. How do secrets dictate Marianne and Elinor’s actions?

What did you think about the practice of secret engagements? Are they a result of sense, or sensibility?

Which sister seems to change the most over the course of the novel? Discuss Elinor and Marianne’s character development and growth. Do you think their growth is realistic?

What did you think about Willoughby’s apology? Did you feel sympathetic towards him? Whether you feel sorry for him or not, discuss the societal constrictions he faced as well.

Margaret is often the overlooked younger sister in this novel–what do you think of her role in this novel? 

Do you think Marianne and Colonel Brandon will be happy together? Elinor and Edward Ferrars? Lucy and Robert Ferrars? Do you believe that their marriages are a result of sense or sensibility? Based on your answers, do you think that Austen was making a statement on the foundation of marriages?

Was this your first Austen novel? How would you compare this book to her other work? Does knowing that Sense and Sensibility is Jane Austen’s first published novel alter your impression or opinion of the book at all? Will you read another Jane Austen novel?

Find More Books For Discussion

Want more great book club discussions? Check out our best book club books of 2020. And if you’re looking for something specific for your next book group meeting, sign up for TBR: Tailored Book Recommendations! TBR is a personalized book recommendation service that send you books you’ll love to read.

Here’s how it works: Simply fill out the reader survey and let us know what you want more of–such as classic books for book clubs–and what you’re not keen on. Then, an expert Biblioligist will read your responses and recommend three books just for you. Receive your recommendation letter via email in about two weeks, or opt to receive your recommendations as brand new hardcovers from our partner, Print: A Bookstore in Portland, ME in about three to four weeks. Learn more and sign up now!

The Best Epistolary Novels

Dear reader, there’s something kind of fun (and maybe a little voyeuristic) about reading epistolary novels. Exploring stories told through letters, journal entries, emails, and other forms of communication makes you feel like you’re an investigator or observer, which can offer a unique reading experience. If you love modern epistolary novels, then you’re in luck! We’ve rounded up some of the best epistolary novels, from classics to new releases, in all genres, that you’ll want to get lost in.

This Is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone

In this sci-fi novella, Blue and Red are two time-traveling agents who work for opposing sides in a struggle for control over the future. But when their paths cross, they begin leaving each other letters that will lead to them falling in love–but also could expose them.

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Schaffer and Annie Barrows

A writer putting her life back together after World War II strikes up a correspondence with a man in Guernsey, who shares with her the unique literary society that he and his neighbors formed during the war to resist the Germans who occupied their island.

The Turn of the Key by Ruth Ware

Part letter to her lawyer, part confession, this novel tells the story of Rowan Caine, a young woman who thought she landed the dream job as a nanny for an ultra-rich family in Scotland, only to find it turn into a nightmare when one of the children in her care ends up dead.

I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith

A young woman keeps a diary of the tumultuous year her family faces when an American family moves into the estate adjacent to their crumbling castle in England.

Last Tang Standing by Lauren Ho

In this novel for fans of Bridget Jones’ Diary, Andrea Tang keeps a diary of what it’s like to be a successful thirty-something in Singapore–well, successful except that she’s not married, the last of her generation in the Tang clan to be single. But when she finds a man who might be perfect, her work rival keeps interfering.

To Night Owl from Dogfish by Meg Woltizer and Holly Sloane Goldberg

In this humorous middle grade novel, two twelve-year-old girls from opposite coasts strike up an email correspondence when they discover that their dads are dating. What begins as an uneasy alliance to break them up turns into genuine friendship.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

Charlie keeps a diary of his freshman year of high school, where he tentatively makes friends with two older teens and learns how to be brave enough to confront a trauma in his past.

Ella Minnow Pea by Mark Dunn

In this novel of letters, Ella lives on the fictional island of Nollop, named after the man who invented the phrase that contains all of the letters in the alphabet. When the statue commemorating their founder begins losing its letters, the town bans the use of the fallen letters until someone can come up with a new phrase to restore their language.

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Ezra and Kady have just broken up when an evil corporation lands on their planet for a violent take over. They escape, and find themselves locked in a desperate race to safety, having to work together. Their story is told in the form of a dossier of interview and chat transcripts, video logs, and more.

On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong

Written as a letter by an immigrant to his illiterate mother, this moving novel explores a son’s coming of age and his examination of the family history of trauma that has had a profound impact on his life.

The Martian by Andy Weir

Told in the form of logs, this book is about Mark, an astronaut who landed on Mars but after an accident finds himself stranded without hope of rescue–so he has to take his few resources to try and survive as long as possible, so he can get word back to Earth.

Gabi, a Girl in Pieces by Isabel Quintero

Gabi is a fat Latina teen who is reckoning with multiple live changes–her dad’s addiction, her best friend’s pregnancy, her other friend coming out–as she struggles to find her own voice during her final year of high school.

A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki

In Tokyo, Nao is a teenager who documents her life and her deep discontent in a journal before deciding to end her life. In Canada, Ruth lives on an island in the Pacific when she discovers a journal washed up on the beach, swept from Japan across the ocean after the 2011 tsunami.

Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

Set in 1999, this novel in emails is a workplace tale about two best friends who write each other constant emails during the weekdays and the IT employee who is required to monitor all emails–and accidentally falls for one of the women.

American Spy by Lauren Wilkinson

This spy story is written as a letter from Marie, the protagonist, to her two young sons, explaining the events that led her from working as an FBI agent to joining the CIA to spy on the president of Burkina Faso–and the ensuing fallout when the U.S. made a move against him.

Dear Rachel Maddow by Adrienne Kisner

After a family tragedy causes Brynn to mess up in school, she finds herself in remedial classes, writing emails to her hero, Rachel Maddow. When an injustice in her school fires Brynn up, she finds herself wondering what Rachel Maddow would do.

White Tiger by Aravind Adiga

Part confession part tell-all, this is the story of Balram Halwai, a poor driver who works for a rich Indian family and finds his life transformed by the wealth and power he lives close proximity to. This story is told in the form of deliciously dark and funny emails.

House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski

This horror tome is full of appendices, exhibits, and collected notes to tell the story of a couple who move into a house that is bigger on the inside than the outside would suggest, and their children wander away.

The Color Purple by Alice Walker

Celie and Nettie are separated as children, but they maintain a correspondence that spans years and showcases their strength, struggles, and triumphs over abuse.

Want more epistolary novels? Check out Book Riot’s big list of 100 must-read epistolary novels from the past and present!

Then if that doesn’t satisfy you, sign up for TBR: Tailored Book Recommendations! TBR is a personalized book recommendation service that send you books you’ll love to read. Here’s how it works: Simply fill out the reader survey and let us know what you want more of–such as epistolary novels–and what you’re not keen on. Then, an expert Biblioligist will read your responses and recommend three books just for you. Receive your recommendation letter via email in about two weeks, or opt to receive your recommendations as brand new hardcovers from our partner, Print: A Bookstore in Portland, ME in about three to four weeks. Learn more and sign up now!

The Best Feminist Mystery Novels

new mystery books

The major influx of women publishing mysteries and thrillers in the past 15 years has meant that we’ve gotten a lot more interesting, diverse crime novels that challenge the status quo and look at crime fiction a bit more broadly. That’s important, especially since the genre tends to get preoccupied with stereotypes about female characters and uses violence against women as set dressing rather than take the opportunity to dive deeper into issues of misogyny and feminism. These fifteen feminist mystery novels explore crime and feminist issues in new and exciting ways.

Uptown Thief by Aya de León

Marisol was once a woman abused with nowhere to turn to, so now she runs a high-end escort service to fund a clinic and refuge for women in need of help–and she also robs her corrupt clients to help bankroll her work. But when an ex-cop starts to get too close, it may jeopardize everything Marisol has worked for.

Barbed Wire Heart by Tess Sharpe

In this feminist thriller, Harley is the daughter of the biggest criminal in her rural county, and she’s been trained from a young age to take over his operation. But Harley, who secretly runs a motel for abused women, doesn’t intend to play by her father’s rules, and she must figure out a way to dismantle her father’s operation and his competitors, and get out alive.

Conviction by Denise Mina

Anna is obsessed with true crime podcasts, so when her husband leaves her, she tunes into a new podcast rather than deal with her problems. But when the subject of the podcast turns out to be someone she knows from her past, Anna is determined to set the record straight, which takes her on a trip throughout Europe and has her confronting her own secret past. This is one of those great feminist mystery novels that addresses the fallout of assault and how money and power can buy silence.

The Silence of Bones by June Hur

Seol is an indentured servant in 1800 Joseon (Korea), and she works for the police bureau in the capitol city, assisting police inspectors in investigations involving women, as men aren’t allowed to touch women unrelated to them. When a noblewoman is found murdered, Seol gets drawn into a complicated investigation involving women, religion, and a struggle between new ideas and old traditions.

The Escape Room by Megan Goldin

Four seemingly successful financiers are summoned to a Friday night meeting, and soon are trapped in an elevator in an empty building and are given clues to escape–but is this really a corporate bonding event, or something more sinister? This book tackles #MeToo, assault, what some people are willing to do in order to advance their careers, and a woman’s revenge.

The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James

In 1982, Viv Delaney is running from her life when she lands in a small town in Upstate New York and begins working at a motel. When she begins to suspect a frequent guest could be preying on young women, she vanishes without a trace. In the present day, Carly travels to the town where her aunt Viv disappeared decades earlier, and tries to solve the mystery of her death, once and for all.

The Widows of Malabar Hill by Sujata Massey

Perveen Mistry is the first female solicitor in 1920s Bombay, working in contracts at her father’s firm. When an odd will comes across her desk, she decides to investigate–and walks straight into a murder mystery. This is an excellent feminist book about a woman who fights to break into a male industry, and challenges patriarchal traditions and domestic abuse.

Out by Natsuo Kirino

This is the story of a young wife and mother who snaps one day and kills her husband–and then asks her female coworkers at the lunchbox factory she works in to help her cover up the crime. But that’s not the end of it for these women, who have drawn the attention of a killer and a police officer.

The Perfect Nanny by Leila Slimani

When Myriam wants to return to work after having kids, she hires Louise, who seems like the perfect nanny. While Myriam is grateful that Louise is able to look after her kids, she also begins to feel like everything is a competition with the nanny, even as she depends on her–leading to a shocking and terrible act.

The Roxane Weary series by Kristen Lepionka

Roxane Weary is a bisexual PI who investigates a wide range of cases, from decades-old murders to fraud to infidelity. Roxane herself is feminist and these books tackle homophobia, racism, and other intersectional issues in an intelligent and progressive way. Start with The Last Place You Look.

The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis

Less of a mystery and more of a general crime novel, this book is about Alex, who is a teenage murderer. She killed the man responsible for her sister’s murder when the police couldn’t bring him to justice, and she got away with it, too. Now she’s dealing with the fallout of her darker urges as her senior year of high school brings new friendships and new injustices.

A Study in Scarlet Women by Sherry Thomas

You can’t just gender swap something and call it feminist, but Sherry Thomas’s Lady Sherlock series definitely goes above and beyond a mere gender-swapped version of the classic tales by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle! In this version, Charlotte Holmes is a disgraced society lady who actively challenges conventions about society and women’s roles in order to solve the most twisting and delicious murder mysteries!

Dangerous Alliance by Jennieke Cohen

Lady Victoria is the second daughter of an earl, and she happily spends her time helping her father runt the estate without any pressure to marry anytime soon. But when her older sister abandons her husband because of his abusive nature, suddenly Victoria is pressured to marry and secure her family’s estate–and at the same time she must figure out who keeps trying to sabotage her and the estate. 

Speaking of Summer by Kalisha Buckhanon

One night in December, Autumn’s twin sister Summer disappeared without a trace on the rooftop of their New York City apartment. It’s been months and  Autumn can’t get anyone, especially the police, to take Summer’s disappearance seriously. This is a beautiful and heartbreaking book about how the disappearances of Black women are so often mishandled and overlooked.

Girl Waits with Gun by Amy Stewart

Based off of the very real Constance Kopp, this book imagines Constance’s life in 1914, when her buggy was run off the road by a gangster and Constance decided she wasn’t going to put up with it. She teams up with the sheriff to take down the gangster, and along the way becomes one of the first female deputies in the United States.

Want more feminist mystery novels in your life? Check out recommendations for the best mystery book club books, and then explore some of the best mystery book subscription services. If that doesn’t satisfy you, sign up for TBR: Tailored Book Recommendations! TBR is a personalized book recommendation service that send you books you’ll love to read.

Here’s how it works: Simply fill out the reader survey and let us know what you want more of–such as feminist mystery novels–and what you’re not keen on. Then, an expert Biblioligist will read your responses and recommend three books just for you. Receive your recommendation letter via email in about two weeks, or opt to receive your recommendations as brand new hardcovers from our partner, Print: A Bookstore in Portland, ME in about three to four weeks. Learn more and sign up now!