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Mystery & Suspense

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Sometime in the last four or five decades the Powers That Be decided every movie mystery would follow basically the same plot so that viewers wouldn't have to worry about the outcome and would be able to enjoy the movie all the way through. Fortunately for those who prefer to let the future unfold itself, there are still mystery novels.

A mystery is simply something you don't know or can't understand. By the time you understand it, it's not a mystery anymore. Part of the fun of detective stories is not knowing what's going on (at least, not for sure) until the end, when sudden light dawns in the midst of the darkness and you fancy yourself a bit dull for not having picked up on the clues earlier.

Trying to figure the solution before the main characters get there is pretty fun, too, though there's another kind of satisfaction from waiting till Hercule Poirot or Sherlock Holmes or Lord Peter Wimsey reveal the criminal by name, the extent of his or her crimes, and the motivations that led them to kill, steal or lie. Though in the end, most of us probably end up in both categories, trying to figure everything out but still surprised by the truth.

Modern mystery novels tend to focus on criminal evil, fascinated by the depths humans are capable of sinking to. While older ones certainly didn't hesitate to point out man's depravity and capacity for wrongdoing, they were even more concerned with justice and the good guys who overcome the bad guys through superior wit and reason.

These are the ones we like. We don't admire Sherlock Holmes only for his formidable genius, but also for his commitment to employ it for the forces of good. Miss Marple doesn't need to solve crimes, but she does—and we rejoice every time she triumphs over a shady perpetrator. In the real world things might not always wind up so neatly, but it's nice to know in some books they always will.

Review by C. Hollis Crossman
C. Hollis Crossman used to be a child. Now he is a husband and father, teaches adult Sunday school in his Presbyterian congregation, and likes weird stuff. He might be a mythical creature, but he's definitely not a centaur. Read more of his reviews here.

 

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100-Year-Old Secret
Sherlock Files #1
by Tracy Barrett
1st edition from Square Fish Publishing
for 4th-8th grade
in Adventure Stories (Location: A04-01A)
$4.89
Adventures and Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes
by Arthur Conan Conan Doyle
from Penguin Classics
for 7th-Adult
in 19th Century Literature (Location: CLT-19C)
$9.80
Adventures and Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes
Sterling Classics
by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Unabridged from Sterling Publishing Co.
for 7th-12th grade
in Sterling Classics (Location: A04-04A)
$11.21
And Then There Were None
by Agatha Christie
from HarperCollins
Murder Mystery for 9th-Adult
in 20th & 21st Century Literature (Location: CLT-20C)
At The Villa of Reduced Circumstances
Professor Dr. von Igelfeld Entertainment - Book 3
by Alexander McCall Smith
from Anchor Books
for 9th-Adult
in 20th & 21st Century Literature (Location: CLT-20C)
$3.30 (1 in stock)
Atlas Shrugged
by Ayn Rand
50th Anniversary Edition from Signet Classics
for 10th-Adult
in 20th & 21st Century Literature (Location: CLT-20C)
$6.99
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by Cyrus Fisher
from Scholastic Inc.
for 5th-7th grade
in Historical Fiction (Location: A05-01A)
$0.90 (2 in stock)
Baffle Book
by Lassiter Wren
from David R. Godine
for 6th-12th grade
in Brain Teasers & Puzzlers (Location: CGA-07D)
$7.67
Big Over Easy
by Jasper Fforde
from Penguin Putnam
for 11th-Adult
in 20th & 21st Century Literature (Location: CLT-20C)
Black as Night
by Regina Doman
2nd edition from Chesterton Press
Modern Fairy Tale for
Bobbsey Twins #08
by Laura Lee Hope
from Grosset & Dunlap
for 1st-4th grade
in Bobbsey Twins (Location: A10-02F)
Bobbsey Twins #57
by Laura Lee Hope
from Grosset & Dunlap
for 2nd-5th grade
in Bobbsey Twins (Location: A10-02F)
$4.00 (1 in stock)
Bobbsey Twins at School
by Laura Lee Hope
from Grosset & Dunlap
for 1st-4th grade
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$6.40 (2 in stock)
Bobbsey Twins at the Seashore
by Laura Lee Hope
from Grosset & Dunlap
for 1st-4th grade
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$6.40 (1 in stock)
Bobbsey Twins in the Country
by Laura Lee Hope
from Grosset & Dunlap
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$6.40 (1 in stock)
Bobbsey Twins on a Houseboat
by Laura Lee Hope
from Grosset & Dunlap
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Bobbsey Twins on Blueberry Island
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by Laura Lee Hope
from Grosset & Dunlap
for 1st-4th grade
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Boxcar Children #01
Boxcar Children #1
by Gertrude Chandler Warner
from Albert Whitman & Company
Orphan Stories for 2nd-4th grade
in Boxcar Children (Location: A10-01F)
Bride Collector
by Ted Dekker
1st edition from Center Street
for 8th-Adult
in Clearance: Fiction (Location: ACL-FIC)
$6.00 (1 in stock)
Brit. Lit. Volume 8
by Arthur Conan Doyle, Dorothy Sayers, G. K. Chesterton, Agatha Christie
from Logos School
for 10th-12th grade
in Logos Brit. Lit. (Location: B18-14A)
Busman's Honeymoon
A Lord Peter Mystery, Book 11
by Dorothy L. Sayers
Reprint from HarperCollins
Murder Mystery for 9th-Adult
in 20th & 21st Century Literature (Location: CLT-20C)
$11.19
Calder Game
Balliet Art Mystery Series
by Blue Balliett, Brett Helquist
1st edition from Scholastic Press
for 5th-9th grade
in Adventure Stories (Location: A04-01A)
$6.00 (1 in stock)
Candymakers and the Great Chocolate Chase
by Wendy Mass
from Little, Brown & Company
for 3rd-6th grade
in Fantasy Fiction (Location: A07-02A)
Caribbean Mystery
by Agatha Christie
from William Morrow & Company
for 8th-Adult
in 20th & 21st Century Literature (Location: CLT-20C)
$9.09
Case of the Cat's Meow
An I Can Read Book Level 2
by Crosby Bonsall
from HarperCollins
Mystery/Suspense for Kindergarten-2nd grade
in I Can Read Books (Location: CPB-04B)
$2.99
Case of the Double Cross
An I Can Read Book Level 2
by Crosby Bonsall
from HarperCollins
Mystery/Suspense for Kindergarten-2nd grade
in I Can Read Books (Location: CPB-04B)
$2.99
Case of the Gasping Garbage
by Michele Torrey
2nd edition from Sterling Publishing Co.
for 3rd-6th grade
in Science Fiction (Location: A07-01A)
$4.87
Case of the Hungry Stranger
An I Can Read Book Level 2
by Crosby Bonsall
from HarperCollins
Children's Mystery for Kindergarten-2nd grade
in I Can Read Books (Location: CPB-04B)
$2.99
Chasing Vermeer
Balliet Art Mystery Series
by Blue Balliett, Brett Helquist (Illustrator)
from Scholastic Inc.
Mystery & Suspense for 4th-6th grade
in Adventure Stories (Location: A04-01A)
$5.59
Clouds of Witness
A Lord Peter Mystery, Book 2
by Dorothy Sayers
Reissue from HarperCollins
for 9th-Adult
in 20th & 21st Century Literature (Location: CLT-20C)
$10.49
Code Name Verity
by Elizabeth Wein
from Hyperion/Madison Press
for 9th-12th grade
in Historical Fiction (Location: A05-01A)
Computer Nut
by Betsy Cromer Byars
Reprint from Puffin Books
for 3rd-6th grade
in Realistic Fiction (Location: A06-01A)
$1.50 (1 in stock)
Crispin at the Edge of the World
by Avi
from Hyperion/Madison Press
for 5th-8th grade
in Historical Fiction (Location: A05-01A)
Crispin: The End of Time
by Avi
from Hyperion/Madison Press
for 5th-8th grade
in Historical Fiction (Location: A05-01A)
$4.89
Curtain: Poirot's Last Case
A Hercule Poirot Mystery
by Agatha Christie
Reprint from William Morrow & Company
for 8th-Adult
in 20th & 21st Century Literature (Location: CLT-20C)
$9.79
Daughter of Time
by Josephine Tey
1st edition from Touchstone
for 7th-Adult
in 20th & 21st Century Literature (Location: CLT-20C)
$10.50
Dead End in Norvelt
by Jack Gantos
from Square Fish Publishing
for 5th-8th grade
2012 Newbery Medal Winner
in Realistic Fiction (Location: A06-01A)
Deadly Curse of Toco-Rey
The Cooper Kids Adventure Series #6
by Frank Peretti
from Tyndale House
for 5th-9th grade
in Adventure Stories (Location: A04-01A)
Death on the Nile
by Agatha Christie
from HarperCollins
Mystery & Suspense for 8th-Adult
in 20th & 21st Century Literature (Location: CLT-20C)
$9.09
Demon in the Teahouse
by Dorothy Hoobler, Thomas Hoobler
from Puffin Books
for 4th-6th grade
in Clearance: Fiction (Location: ACL-FIC)
$2.00 (1 in stock)
Detectives in Togas
by Henry Winterfeld
from Harcourt
Humorous Historical Fiction for 4th-6th grade
in Adventure Stories (Location: A04-01A)
$6.39
Door in the Dragon's Throat
The Cooper Kids Adventure Series #1
by Frank Peretti
from Crossway Books
for 5th-9th grade
in Adventure Stories (Location: A04-01A)
Dorothy L. Sayers: The Complete Stories
by Dorothy L. Sayers
from Harper & Row
for 9th-Adult
in 20th & 21st Century Literature (Location: CLT-20C)
Dorothy's Double
by G. A. Henty
from Robinson Curriculum
for 6th-10th grade
in G. A. Henty Books (Location: A05-04A)
Double Trouble in Bugland
by William Kozwinkle
from David R. Godine
for 3rd-8th grade
in Fantasy Fiction (Location: A07-02A)
$10.47
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
Everyman's Library
by Robert Louis Stevenson
from Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.
for 9th-Adult
in 19th Century Literature (Location: CLT-19C)
Dracula
Everyman's Library
by Bram Stoker
from Alfred A. Knopf, Inc.
for 10th-Adult
in 19th Century Literature (Location: CLT-19C)
$16.10
Dumb Witness
A Hercule Poirot Mystery
by Agatha Christie
Reprint from William Morrow & Company
for 8th-Adult
in 20th & 21st Century Literature (Location: CLT-20C)
$9.79
Ear, the Eye, and the Arm
by Nancy Farmer
from Puffin Books
for 4th-6th grade
in Fantasy Fiction (Location: A07-02A)
$1.80 (1 in stock)
Enchantress of Florence
by Salman Rushdie
Reprint from Anchor Books
for 9th-Adult
in 20th & 21st Century Literature (Location: CLT-20C)
$3.90 (1 in stock)
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