77 books like Crime at Christmas

By C. H. B. Kitchin,

Here are 77 books that Crime at Christmas fans have personally recommended if you like Crime at Christmas. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Mystery in White

Benedict Brown Author Of The Snows of Weston Moor

From my list on overlooked classic Christmas whodunits.

Why am I passionate about this?

Having grown up in a family of crime-fiction readers, I published my first murder mystery in 2019 and have created two bestselling series. My 1920s-set “Lord Edgington Investigates…” books have been a big hit for me, and I’ve just published my third Christmas book overall. But that’s not the only reason I’m qualified to recommend Christmassy whodunits. I am obsessed with Christmas and, with a little help from my four-year-old daughter, spend far too much time decorating every December. Let’s just say that my Christmas Lego village is already out of control, and someone really needs to stop me from buying any more before it takes over our house.

Benedict's book list on overlooked classic Christmas whodunits

Benedict Brown Why did Benedict love this book?

I can’t think of a more evocative start to a murder mystery than a steam train stuck in the snow on Christmas Eve. With no hope of getting to their destination, a group of unlikely allies gangs together to find shelter for the night.

Led by the mysterious Mr. Maltby of the Royal Physical Society, they survive a torturous trek through waist-high drifts and hole up in a stately home with the fires blazing but no one on the premises. There are bodies about the house, clues to be deciphered, and an ancient crime to uncover. I was overjoyed to discover this whodunit from 1937 that is full of quirky characters, unexpected twists, and more snow than any other Christmas mystery I’ve read.

By J. Jefferson Farjeon,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Mystery in White as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'The horror on the train, great though it may turn out to be, will not compare with the horror that exists here, in this house.' On Christmas Eve, heavy snowfall brings a train to a halt near the village of Hemmersby. Several passengers take shelter in a deserted country house, where the fire has been lit and the table laid for tea - but no one is at home. Trapped together for Christmas, the passengers are seeking to unravel the secrets of the empty house when a murderer strikes in their midst.


Book cover of Murder for Christmas

Benedict Brown Author Of The Snows of Weston Moor

From my list on overlooked classic Christmas whodunits.

Why am I passionate about this?

Having grown up in a family of crime-fiction readers, I published my first murder mystery in 2019 and have created two bestselling series. My 1920s-set “Lord Edgington Investigates…” books have been a big hit for me, and I’ve just published my third Christmas book overall. But that’s not the only reason I’m qualified to recommend Christmassy whodunits. I am obsessed with Christmas and, with a little help from my four-year-old daughter, spend far too much time decorating every December. Let’s just say that my Christmas Lego village is already out of control, and someone really needs to stop me from buying any more before it takes over our house.

Benedict's book list on overlooked classic Christmas whodunits

Benedict Brown Why did Benedict love this book?

An eccentric philanthropist calls a group of friends and acquaintances together for Christmas in his ancient mansion. It isn’t long before someone dressed as Father Christmas turns up dead beneath the Christmas tree. Among the crowd of mismatched suspects is Mordecai Tremaine, one-time tobacconist, fan of romantic fiction, and occasional crime-solver. Tremaine is an unusual sleuth with a touch of Sherlock Holmes’s eccentricity but an optimistic spirit that guides him through the case. There’s a truly clever twist in the finale and, of course, plenty of snow! This is another book that feels very much neglected and deserves rediscovery.

By Francis Duncan,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Murder for Christmas as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The first book in a classic Golden Age mystery series perfect for fans of Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot

When Mordecai Tremaine arrives at the country retreat of one Benedict Grame on Christmas Eve, he discovers that the revelries are in full swing in the sleepy village of Sherbroome—but so too are tensions amongst the assortment of guests.

When midnight strikes, the partygoers discover that presents aren't the only things nestled under the tree...there's a dead body too. A dead body that bears a striking resemblance to Father Christmas. With the snow falling and suspicions flying, it's up to Mordecai to…


Book cover of Another Little Christmas Murder

Benedict Brown Author Of The Snows of Weston Moor

From my list on overlooked classic Christmas whodunits.

Why am I passionate about this?

Having grown up in a family of crime-fiction readers, I published my first murder mystery in 2019 and have created two bestselling series. My 1920s-set “Lord Edgington Investigates…” books have been a big hit for me, and I’ve just published my third Christmas book overall. But that’s not the only reason I’m qualified to recommend Christmassy whodunits. I am obsessed with Christmas and, with a little help from my four-year-old daughter, spend far too much time decorating every December. Let’s just say that my Christmas Lego village is already out of control, and someone really needs to stop me from buying any more before it takes over our house.

Benedict's book list on overlooked classic Christmas whodunits

Benedict Brown Why did Benedict love this book?

This one is actually a bit of a cheat as it’s not really set at Christmas, although it is suitably snowy. In fact, it was originally published as “Another Little Murder” but has been renamed by canny publishers. I’ve included it anyway because it is such a fun book and, with its isolated, country-house setting, it certainly feels cosy enough for this time of year.

Published in 1947, it features an exceptionally likable detective called Dilys Hughes. She’s a witty, quirky, and determined protagonist who finds herself at the wonderfully named manor of Wintry Wold, just in time to investigate the death of its elderly owner. With its light touch and plenty of banter, it’s far closer to modern “cozy” whodunits than gritty, hard-boiled fiction. A really fun read to devour before Christmas arrives.

By Lorna Nicholl Morgan,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Another Little Christmas Murder as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A classic country house mystery republished for the first time in nearly seventy years. Perfect for fans of Murder at the Old Vicarage and Partners in Crime. When Dilys Hughes finds herself snowbound in the middle of a bleak and lonely stretch of Yorkshire, she has no option but to accept help from passing motorist Inigo Brown, who is on his way to visit his uncle. Arriving at his uncle's remote country house, Wintry Wold, the couple encounters a less than warm welcome from Inigo's new young aunt, Theresa. Why is she reluctant to let Inigo see his uncle, and…


Book cover of Murder in the Snow

Benedict Brown Author Of The Snows of Weston Moor

From my list on overlooked classic Christmas whodunits.

Why am I passionate about this?

Having grown up in a family of crime-fiction readers, I published my first murder mystery in 2019 and have created two bestselling series. My 1920s-set “Lord Edgington Investigates…” books have been a big hit for me, and I’ve just published my third Christmas book overall. But that’s not the only reason I’m qualified to recommend Christmassy whodunits. I am obsessed with Christmas and, with a little help from my four-year-old daughter, spend far too much time decorating every December. Let’s just say that my Christmas Lego village is already out of control, and someone really needs to stop me from buying any more before it takes over our house.

Benedict's book list on overlooked classic Christmas whodunits

Benedict Brown Why did Benedict love this book?

As much as I love mysteries that are all done and dusted in a weekend, I also enjoy the longer, slower type of whodunit where the plot unfolds over weeks and even months. Murder in the Snow kicks off at Christmastime with a murdered thug, a missing housekeeper, and a possible ghost, but psychoanalyst and amateur detective Mrs. Bradley sticks around to solve the crime.

Bradley is often compared to Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple and appeared in sixty-six novels over half a century. In contrast to Agatha Christie’s famous heroine, Mrs. Bradley is a rather witchy and sarcastic character, but I enjoyed the way she works with her nephew and his wife in this book to solve the mystery of a series of disreputable characters’ involvement in a puzzling crime.

By Gladys Mitchell,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Murder in the Snow as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This classic crime treat is the perfect Christmas gift for fans of Agatha Christie, Dorothy L. Sayers and Ngaio Marsh.

First published in 1950 as Groaning Spinney.

'A delight... An amateur sleuth to rival Miss Marple' Guardian

Mrs Bradley, sharp-eyed detective and celebrated psychiatrist, has decided to spend Christmas with her nephew at his beautiful house in the Cotswolds.

It isn't long before a mystery unfolds. There are strange events occurring in the nearby wood and local villagers are receiving anonymous threatening letters. Then the snow begins to fall - and a body is discovered.

Mrs Bradley is on the…


Book cover of Hercule Poirot's Christmas

Trevor D'Silva Author Of A Bloody Hot Summer

From my list on Agatha Christie and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

Why am I passionate about this?

Even though I’m an engineer and accountant by education, I love to write and growing up, I read many historical fiction and murder mysteries. History spanning from the Victorian Era until the mid-twentieth century has always fascinated me, and I’ve studied various events from that period. Therefore, I wrote A Bloody Hot Summer, a crime novel using some historical events as a background. The interwar years were the heyday of crime fiction, and that is why I set my novel during that period. While researching, I get to expand my knowledge regarding history, culture, art, language, and values of those times, which I add to the novel.

Trevor's book list on Agatha Christie and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Trevor D'Silva Why did Trevor love this book?

In this book, a murder takes place in a manor house just like in my novel, but during Christmas time. There is a connection to a diamond mine in South Africa, and how that played a part in the murder of the patriarch of the family. Detective Hercule Poirot has to delve into the family’s past to connect the dots and determine the motive and the identity of the killer. For those who like murders set during Christmas time, this is a novel for you.

By Agatha Christie,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Hercule Poirot's Christmas as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

It is Christmas Eve. The Lee family reunion is shattered by a deafening crash of furniture, followed by a high-pitched wailing scream. Upstairs, the tyrannical Simeon Lee lies dead in a pool of blood, his throat slashed.

But when Hercule Poirot, who is staying in the village with a friend for Christmas, offers to assist, he finds an atmosphere not of mourning but of mutual suspicion. It seems everyone had their own reason to hate the old man...


Book cover of The Likeness

Celina Grace Author Of Hushabye

From my list on kickass female detectives.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always been interested in the dark side of the human psyche and how people choose or are driven to do the awful things that some of them do. Equally, I enjoy reading and writing stories that feature strong women, who may be scared and vulnerable at times, but who are brave, intelligent, and determined to see justice done. I began writing The Kate Redman Mysteries because I wanted to write about a detective who, despite an appalling upbringing and without much care and support, really believes in her career and in protecting the underdog. In the interests of equality, I like to include quite a few female villains too. 😉

Celina's book list on kickass female detectives

Celina Grace Why did Celina love this book?

We first meet Cassie Maddox in Tana French’s debut book, In the Woods, but in her second showing, she really shows her mettle. Recovering from the betrayal she undergoes in the investigation of a brutal child’s murder in the first book, Cassie is recruited for an undercover assignment to solve another murder – but this time, it’s the death of a young woman who she eerily resembles. Cassie must pretend to be the dead woman and gain the trust and confidence of the group of charismatic oddballs who were the closest friends of the victim. I loved Donna Tartt’s The Secret History and The Likeness is something of an homage to that modern classic – with a heroine who’s brave, scrappy, and determined to see the case through to the bitter end.

By Tana French,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Likeness as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Still traumatised by her brush with a psychopath, Detective Cassie Maddox transfers out of the Murder squad and starts a relationship with fellow detective Sam O'Neill. When he calls her to the scene of his new case, she is shocked to find that the murdered girl is her double. What's more, her ID shows she is Lexie Madison - the identity Cassie used, years ago, as an undercover detective. With no leads, no suspects and no clues to Lexie's real identity, Cassie's old boss spots the opportunity of a lifetime: send Cassie undercover in her place, to tempt the killer…


Book cover of Hoshi and the Red City Circuit

Nick Walker Author Of Neuroqueer Heresies: Notes on the Neurodiversity Paradigm, Autistic Empowerment, and Postnormal Possibilities

From my list on neuroqueer speculative fiction.

Why am I passionate about this?

My first passion, as a youngster, was speculative fiction—stories and comics that set the imagination ablaze with visions of wondrous possibilities and impossibilities. Later, my experiences of being queer, transgender, and autistic led me to an academic career in which I helped create the field of Neurodiversity Studies and something called Neuroqueer Theory (which is what you get when you mix Queer Theory and neurodiversity together and shake vigorously). These days I’m back to writing fiction, including the urban fantasy webcomic Weird Luck, and I’m thrilled to find myself part of an emerging wave of neuroqueer speculative fiction. Here are some of the best so far...

Nick's book list on neuroqueer speculative fiction

Nick Walker Why did Nick love this book?

Autistic minds are uniquely suited to interface with 26th-century computers. Has this led society to appreciate autistic people? Of course not! Instead, they’ve been turned into a caste called Operators, enslaved computer programmers denied human rights. But this is starting to change, and recently-liberated Operator Hoshi Archer has a new life as a private investigator. Her latest case? A serial killer who’s ritually murdering Operators. Dora Raymaker vividly describes autistic experience in a way that no non-autistic writer could, and it was profoundly moving for me to read a book written from the viewpoint of a character whose sensory processing was so much like my own. On top of all this, Hoshi and the Red City Circuit is a gripping can’t-put-it-down detective thriller!

By Dora M. Raymaker,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Hoshi and the Red City Circuit as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Due to their unique neurology, only the enslaved Operator caste can program the quantum computers that run 26th century Red City. When three of the caste are ritually murdered, it's up to private investigator Hoshi Archer—herself a recently liberated Operator—to help the police solve the case. Things get complicated when one of the victims turns out to be Hoshi's ex-girlfriend, and power-hungry bureaucrats and old rivals stir up new problems. An immortal, amoral alien may even be involved. To unwind the plot to take over the city, Hoshi must decipher a deadly computer program and learn to communicate with the…


Book cover of Like a Sister

Elizabeth Amber Love Author Of Full Body Manslaughter: A Farrah Wethers Mystery

From my list on women starting over.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve spent my life recreating myself as many times as Madonna. If things aren’t working, I move on to something new. I’ll go to classes, learn something else, change careers, and struggle the whole way as I look for pieces of life that fit the puzzle of me. It takes me a lot longer to read so when I try to diversify my bookshelf and don’t always stick to my genre (as the professionals tell an author to do). What I “stick to” is finding female characters who struggle and want to give up, but somehow, something deep inside them makes them move forward one step at a time.

Elizabeth's book list on women starting over

Elizabeth Amber Love Why did Elizabeth love this book?

Kellye Garrett takes the fake world of reality TV, hashtags, and influencers to circle her reluctant protagonist, Lena Scott. Life and actions are judged to only have value if you have video of it to get clicks. That’s the message that stuck with me.

Lena Scott and her sister Desiree may share a father, but they could not be more different. That father is hip-hop mogul Mel Pierce known in the business as Murder Mel. The family members are in and out of each other’s lives with the same kinds of drama a blue-collar family would have; there are just bigger price tags. Lena steps out and opts for a modest life away from the family fortune and her father’s name.

When Desiree suddenly dies as a fallen from grace celebrity who appears to have overdosed, Lena doesn’t buy it. Even two years without speaking doesn’t erase how well she…

By Kellye Garrett,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Like a Sister as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this "crackling domestic suspense" filled with "wry humor and deft pacing" (Alyssa Cole), no one bats an eye when a Black reality TV star is found dead—except her estranged half-sister, whose refusal to believe the official story leads her on a dangerous search for the truth.

“A mystery that has everything I love most: an intriguing set up; an absorbing storyline that kept me guessing; a satisfying ending; and, most of all, incredibly well-developed characters I kept thinking about long after I finished the book.” ―Jasmine Guillory, Today Show

“I found out my sister was back in New York…


Book cover of In the Name of the Children: An FBI Agent's Relentless Pursuit of the Nation's Worst Predators

Dianne DeMille Author Of Path of the Devil: Camino del Diablo

From my list on true crime and corruption.

Why am I passionate about this?

As an educator and author of many books, I was asked to write a book about the spiritual journey of a DEA agent with two PIs. They were determined to end a notorious Cartel organization operating along the U.S. Southwestern border. For over five years the two Private Investigators (PI) and DEA Agent Larry Hardin prepared the case for prosecution. The case hit one roadblock after another when presented to five different U.S. Attorneys for prosecution. The books listed below will appeal to similar customers and show connections of the criminal underworld and how the judicial system function’s; finding a way to bring them to justice. News junkies, historians, and true crime enthusiasts will enjoy reading these stories told by those who investigated the activities. 

Dianne's book list on true crime and corruption

Dianne DeMille Why did Dianne love this book?

This is an excellent reading about a former FBI agent not giving up on their search to find predators. I truly honor this agent for how he never gave up on the search. From my former experience as a Special Agent with The Drug Enforcement Administration, the writers did a thorough job to focus on how the FBI Agents unselfishly dedicated long investigative hours to target the predators of children. The writers described how the FBI agent’s moral beliefs and his dedication to helping the sexually abused children; perseverance, and creative innovative investigative techniques that enable him to find the predators.

By Marilee Strong, Jeffrey L. Rinek,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked In the Name of the Children as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"The voice that narrates In the Name of the Children: An F.B.I. Agent's Relentless Pursuit of the Nation's Worst Predators, which Rinek wrote with the journalist Marilee Strong, sounds warm and humane, qualities missing from much crime writing. Their book is a professional job, filled with illuminating details about the day-to-day operations of the bureau."

—New York Times Book Review 

 

FBI Special Agent Jeff Rinek had a gift for getting child predators to confess. All he had to do was share a piece of his soul . . .

In the Name of the Children gives an unflinching look at…


Book cover of Lightseekers

Michael Stanley Author Of A Deadly Covenant

From my list on African noir thrillers.

Why are we passionate about this?

Michael Stanley is actually two people—Michael Sears and Stanley Trollip both South Africans, passionate about Africa and its cultures. We read a lot of books set in or concerning Africa. We think of African thrillers as Sunshine Noir—things are always at their most deadly in the glare of the sun! The diverse cultures generate complex character clashes and intriguingly original plots. We believe some of the best thrillers anywhere are set in Africa and written by African writers. Michael writes an article every month titled Africa Scene for the International Thrillers Writers magazine (The Big Thrill) where he interviews an author about a new thriller set in Africa.

Michael's book list on African noir thrillers

Michael Stanley Why did Michael love this book?

Loosely based on a true story, Lightseekers explores the dynamics of mob violence and how it can be manipulated. What persuaded a gang of boys at a rural university to behave as they did? Why was the response so out of proportion? How was the local politics involved and why? In this thriller we know what happened, the mystery is why and how it happened the way it did. A superb debut.

By Femi Kayode,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Lightseekers as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Waterstones Thriller of the Month 'Lightseekers is ripe with all the twists and turns you could hope for... A fast-paced thriller that offers insight into the ever present tensions in a poverty stricken community. An action-packed and spirited debut' Oyinkan Braithwaite, author of My Sister, the Serial Killer Selected as a Best Crime Novel of the Month by The Times, Sunday Times, Independent, Guardian, Observer, Financial Times and Irish Times. Winner of the 2019 UEA Crime Writing Prize, Lightseekers is the start of a major new crime series introducing investigative psychologist Dr Philip Taiwo. When three young students are brutally…


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