All Mystery

Nothing piques our curiosity quite like a good mystery.  It’s why so many of us grew up playing detective alongside our fictional favorites.  Typically, mystery stories begin with a crime, offer several suspects and scenarios through the story, and culminate in a surprise ending.

Mystery Subgenre List


Classic Mystery

These mysteries are some of the very earliest stories of the genre. Not to mention, the settings of these stories roam around the globe and through the ages, offering the reader the chance to disappear into another world.

Cozy Mystery

These mysteries tend to be lighthearted. Although murder may occur, it is never presented in grim detail. Crimes are typically solved by amateur detectives rather than professionals. Crimes typically occur in small towns where everyone knows everyone else.  These mysteries rarely include sex, profanity, or violence. 


This subgenre is characterized by an investigator – whether professional or amateur – who is trying to solve a mystery. The key difference between detective fiction and police procedurals is a lack of direct ties to the police. Detective fiction showcases an investigator who runs a detective agency of sorts, and who may work with the police, but not for them. 

Hard Boiled

This subgenre of mystery is exactly as it sounds; hardcore. These books feature an overworked detective who is fighting their own demons. These mysteries may include violence, sex, or graphic scenes. 

Historical Mystery

Historical mystery is simply a mystery story set in a historic time period. 

Humorous Mystery

These stories have suspenseful storylines, assorted characters and surprise twists that add up to great entertainment.  Sprinkle in a little humor for the perfect mix of intrigue and amusement. These stories are guaranteed to provoke laughter. 

Inspirational Mystery

These mysteries can face their inspirational dilemma in different ways, depending on how the author tackles it. It can be complex to show the messy debates of good versus sin. It can be dark to show sin’s terrible effects. Or it can be lighthearted to affirm good’s triumph over evil. 


To craft a list of really good mysteries, the first thing you must do is define the term mystery.  This genre puts its emphasis on solving a puzzling event – often a crime or murder but not always. 


Noir Mystery focuses on the classic detective story: a tragically flawed detective in a trench coat trying to solve a crime. 

Police Stories

These mysteries focus on police investigations. They tend to be highly researched to show how actual police investigations function. They often include autopsy reports and forensic science. These stories may switch points of view between the detectives and the perpetrator of the crime. 

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