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Write mysteries? Must read mystery and crime novels

Mystery Reading Challenge

Try a mystery (crime) reading challenge

If you are writing a mystery or a crime novel, you probably are–or should be–an avid mystery reader. Your growing to-be-read pile is groaning, your full bookshelf of unread mysteries is sagging. A reading challenge may be the very thing to jump-start that reading frenzy; and, as you know, reading mysteries can be pretty instructional.

I have a huge interest in reading books where a crime or mystery is at the forefront; Edgar Allan Poe has been a favorite author since my early teen years. Today I’m a huge fan of Michael Connelly, Harlan Coben, John Hart and Thomas H. Cook for starters, but I must admit my reading has plummeted over the last few years. Unfortunately, not so my book-buying capability. I have a LOT of books to read. Maybe this challenge help me feel a little less guilty.

Details for the 2013 Mystery Crime Reading Challenge

Looks like 61 mystery-lovin’ readers have signed up so far, so there’s a nice sized community in place for this year’s challenge. The challenge is hosted by Amy over at The Crafty Book Nerd and is pretty darn simple as these things go:

  • The reading challenge runs one year (Jan – Dec 2013).
  • Novels, short stories or authors who with book in the mystery/crime genre are included.
  • A novel is anything over 100 pages. (5 short stories = 1 novel).
  • You can add a link(s) to your post showing the progress. (No blog? Track your reading via Goodreads or Flickr.)
  • Drawing for a $25 gift card (Barnes & Noble) each month for participants who link their progress provided.
  • Rankings are achieved at the end of the year according to your final book tally and a secret prize will be given to the one who reads the most books.

Now, don’t go by what I’ve written here. For the specific details, make sure you view and sign up via the 2013 Mystery/Crime Reading Challenge official page.

My mystery and crime books

Mystery writer Michael Connelly

Michael Connelly

Okay, I’m going to make this a quick preliminary tour of those leaning, stacked, and fallen-to-the-floor books that are screaming for my attention:

  • Every Harlan Coben book that has remained unread
  • At least 2-3 of Thomas H. Cook’s books
  • Michael Connelley’s books since about 2006 or 2007 (Could he not be quite so prolific?)
  • John Hart’s last two novels
  • The complete works of Edgar Allan Poe (Yes, it’s a definite reread.)
  • Back issues of the annual Best American Short Story collections
  • At least one Sherlock Holmes novel
  • Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray

That’s enough for now but here’s my project reading list for the mystery (crime) challenge to go with my Classics Club project page and the Short Story Reading Challenge project page. To read more about this challenge or to sign up, go here. The reading challenges I’ve chosen for 2013 all allow for my books to count for each challenge, so that’s a good thing.

What? What rank do I want? Well, Chief (25) or Sherlock (30) would be terrific but realistically I figure Sergeant (10) or Lieutenant (15). Thanks to Crafty Book Nerd for this challenge. Click on the authors photos for their latest or upcoming book.

Mystery writer Harlan Coben

Harlan Coben

Mystery writer John Hart

John Hart

Mystery writer Thomas H. Cook

Thomas H. Cook

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Who are your favorite authors or mystery books? Share your thoughts and comments below.

  • IMAGES & AFFILIATE CREDITS: book covers and titles via Amazon.com affiliate program; Photos courtesy author’s webpages.

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