Five Things I Look for in a Mystery Book

Mystery book photo

Next week I will be sharing four things I look for in a women’s fiction book. Today, I’m sharing the five things I look for in a mystery book. My relationship is a little different with mystery books because I’m looking for specific characteristics.


2)Heroes (Protagonist)

3)Twists and Turns


5)Problem Solving

Let’s take a look at each one.


A mystery is not a mystery without the bad guy. The criminal is the antagonist who causes all the problems. He or she keeps the detectives, private investigators and any other mystery solving sleuth on their toes.


A mystery is not a mystery without someone to save the day or night. the hero or protagonist is the person who contradicts the bad guy and brings him or her down. I look for a strong woman who has overcome obstacles to do her job like in Broken Heart by Tyora Moody. I’m a sucker for the hero who is a private investigator, writer, or librarian (like my character Dotti Wethington). According to the type of mystery, the hero may even be an innocent bystander

Twist and Turns

A mystery must keep me on my toes and this is when the twists and turns come in. I like trying to solve the mystery before the reveal. I don’t like then to be obvious.


I really like delving in when the hero keeps getting hit with challenges in the course of solving the case. These are not like twists and turns but are personal challenges. This makes for a suspenseful book and thrills the heck out of me. It also makes me root even more for the hero to solve the case and to overcome whatever obstacle in holding her back.

Problem Solving

A mystery has to have a problem (a murder, kidnapping, theft etc.) that needs to be solved to hold my attention. The problem also will need some subplot issues that has the hero going crazy to solve. I love murder and kidnapping mysteries because those have a lot of suspense and the right amount of drama.

So when I am looking for a mystery, I think of the five things I have shared with you to make sure I am picking the right book. My favorite show is Murder She Wrote, so I am drawn to cozy mysteries (like writers Susan M. Boyer, Terri L. Austin and Lyndee Walker). I also like mysteries featuring small towns and church communities (like the Victory Gospel series by Tyora Moody).

Which type of mysteries do you like? Drop a comment sharing some of the great mysteries you’ve read.

Until next time,

This Teresa at Fuzzy Findz.



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