mystery booksVia Galleycat came this news, that Amazon has put out a new list of mystery books to supplement their ‘100 Books to Read in a Lifetime’ feature. The books run the gamut from classic to modern, more genre-ish to literary. Of the 100 listed titles, I’ve read about a quarter.

As is typical of such lists, debate will likely rage over the included titles. Gillian Flynn’s trendy Gone Girl over her vastly superior earlier work, Dark Places? Mary Higgins Clark? Really?

Anyway, if you’re looking for somewhere to get started, here are my top 5 favs from the list:

Before I Go To Sleep by S.J. Watson: A woman with amnesia tries to reconstruct the mystery of her life. The catch? She can’t form new memories either, so she has to get caught up to speed on her progress via a daily journal which slowly builds clues.

Get Shorty by Elmore Leonard: I have never been a huge Leonard fan, but my dad worships this guy and says he is one of the best contemporary noir authors there is. This is his most known title.

And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie: A mystery classic wherein a pool of suspects is killed off one by one, eliminating them from contention as the murderer.

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier: A woman is curious about her husband’s first wife. There is more to it than that, of course, and I wouldn’t say this is a mystery novel in the classic sense, but the twist ending blew my mind when I first read it years ago.

The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith: A charming series featuring a lady detective who lives and works in Botswana.