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21 Crime Novels That Will Definitely Turn You Into Sherlock Holmes

Will you be able to get to the bottom of these?

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We recently asked members of the BuzzFeed Community to share what the best crime novel they ever read was. We got a bunch of responses, but here are the ones that are absolutely thrilling.

1. Murder on the Orient Express: A Hercule Poirot Mystery by Agatha Christie

"[I pick] Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie. It's one of her greatest mystery novels and is being turned into a film this year. Private detective Hercule Poirot is on the Orient Express, which is stopped in the middle of the night by snow. The next morning — one of the many passengers — an American tycoon is found murdered in his cabin, with the door locked from the inside. Stuck in the middle of nowhere, and travelling with a murderer, Poirot has to find the killer before he — or she — strikes again."


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2. Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King

"Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King is so amazingly terrifying." —lenolina23

"This story is chilling and filled with plot twists that literally made me gasp. The entire trilogy is riveting. I couldn't put any of the books down." —ashleyb45512dc8c

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3. The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware

"The Woman in Cabin 10 is a perfect crime novel to read on a dark, stormy night." —brookeb624

"Incredibly shocking twist, and a truly unique murder mystery." —Butterflybutts91

"All her books are amazing, but this one is something different. It's haunting, terrifying, surprising, and makes you feel so claustrophobic that intensifies every part of the story." —Sarah Hollenbeck, Facebook

"This author, Ruth Ware, sure knows how to write a page turner!!! 📖 This one is an edge of your seat thriller, set on the most beautiful yacht in the world...Full of great characters and twists, y'all should check it out!" —Reese Witherspoon, Instagram

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4. The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith, aka J.K. Rowling

"I personally really enjoyed The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith (JK Rowling under a pseudonym). The characters are believable and almost painfully real in true Rowling fashion. The story is both intriguing but also just a little bit heartwarming. It's a great book if you love crime fiction but hate the nightmares it'll give you." —katierjeanes

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5. Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter

"Pretty Girls is one of my absolute favorite mystery/crime books. It grabs you from the beginning and doesn't let go. The story is about a family whose daughter went missing 17 years ago, now another death has happened in the family and they're somehow related. I finished it in three days and seriously did not want it to end. The characters feel so real, the story is set in modern time (which I absolutely loved), and the entire effort and development that Slaughter put into this is incredible. Do yourself a favor and check this one out ASAP." —Kevin Smith, BuzzFeed

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6. Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn

"Sharp Objects is the best book period. It's so artfully written. The whole book is just an ongoing poem. I didn't want it to end." —tabithamayer88

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7. The Last Victim: A True-Life Journey into the Mind of the Serial Killer by Jason Moss

"I read this for a research project my sophomore year. It was insanely creepy to read all about what really goes on in a serial killer's mind. The fact that the author Jason Moss killed himself on June 6th, 2006 (6/6/06) makes it even more haunting." —ryenmdetoro

Get this from Amazon for ~$15.


9. Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders by Vincent Bugliosi

"For real crime, Helter Skelter, hands down. My mom got it for me for Christmas two or so years ago, with the distinct note not to read it at night. So, I didn't and I still had nightmares. For some reason, reading about these events and these people takes on a whole new spin. You get so much more immersed in the story.

[This book] is incredibly well-written and well-detailed. [The author was] the lead prosecutor against Manson and his followers. Every time I read it, I find something new and then it freaks me out enough that I'm out of the genre for a while. But I never have any regrets." —jailindaniel

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10. Behind Closed Doors by B. A. Paris

"I don't want to say too much, but it was incredible. So many unexpected twists. When I finished the book I didn't even know what to do with myself. I just sat there stunned for the longest time." —kaylar401220a44

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11. In Cold Blood by Truman Capote

"I could not put this book down! I love true crime, and I love fiction so this book was the best of both worlds. It actually made me go out after reading it to do some investigating, and see what really happened to the Clutter family. Capote's feelings for murderer Perry is very obvious in the book, and it really does make you feel for Perry and his upbringing." — ashley79boyd

"[This book] is based on a true story. The way that Capote writes makes it seem like you are reading an extremely intense novel. I would sit on the couch and forget I was reading for like three hours because I was engrossed in the book. It really makes you think, and not want to live in the middle of nowhere. I absolutely loved it!" —arcadiag

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12. Defending Jacob by William Landay

“By the end, I was reading and saying out loud, ‘No! Nooooo!!!! No!’ It was so good I had to take a moment and think about life when I finished it.” — monicag475fcea33

"Wonderfully written, well-developed plot, and unexpected turns. A very thought-provoking psychological drama. It definitely was a conversation starter after my husband and I both read it." —lindsayb42bb479a4

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13. The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

"This book easily made my top five favorites within the first hundred pages. The story takes so many turns, and hits every scene with such artistic clarity. When I got to the ending, I was literally talking out loud like I'd binge watched a TV show and made it to the finale. So. Freaking. GOOD." —hannahs4532cc907

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14. The Killer Inside Me by Jim Thompson

"The Killer Inside Me is the BEST crime novel. The glimpse into the mind of a brutal maniac does not pull punches, and it satisfies you to the very end." — jakew4a3cfc8a5

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15. I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga

"This entire series is amazing! It's worth the read, and it's just hard to put down once you start. There's the lovable character and the amazing details that will help you visualize the scene, even if it's a tad bit gory. You'll feel sorry for the protagonist because his dad put him through so much as a kid through his early teens." —naya45431bcf3

Get it from Amazon for $6.


16. Confessions by Kanae Minato

"[This one is] a lesser known novel but more people should give it a chance! It's about a student who kills a teacher's child, and the mother's revenge. It had me gasping out loud." —c0ryjean

Get this from Amazon for $8.

17. Relic by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

"Relic by Preston and Child is the perfect mix of mystery, horror and real life knowledge. Plus I love how every chapter is a different perspective of a character." —alexisr17

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18. Still Missing by Chevy Stevens

"I have read a lot of crime books and normally I can predict the endings, who the killer is, and that sort of stuff. This book however, kept me guessing all the way through." —shannans4f4636e44

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19. The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha Christie

"The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha Christie was her first book and introduced Hercule Poirot. Just when I thought I figured out "whodunit," she put in a twist and threw me off. I love mysteries, and after reading this I realized she truly is the queen of mystery." —Vicki Asato, Facebook

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20. The Firm by John Grisham

"I became obsessed with The Firm after seeing a coworker read it every day at lunch. She said she only had time to read during lunch, and she read this book for weeks. I got a copy and at first it was a little slow, but I kept with it, and could hardly put it down. When I finally did I was sad because it was so good. I've read it about 10 more times since. Went to see the movie and was so disappointed."


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21. Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil by Melina Marchetta

"I can't recommend Melina Marchetta's Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil enough. It's fiction, but it has that ripped-from-the-headlines feel that will stay it in your mind long, long after you turn the final page. It makes you think (sometimes to your own discomfort) about the ‘guilty until proven innocent’ way the media treats terrorism suspects, and the lasting consequences such portrayals have on both individuals and society. And, the final reveal will take your breath away."


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Note: Entries have been edited for clarity and length.

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