An initiative of the American Library Association

Sleuths in the Stacks

By Shari Randall

In honor of National Library Week, April 8-14, we celebrate books with a library connection—either set in libraries or with a librarian detective. Who better to solve a mystery than a librarian? Tech savvy, expert researchers with a broad knowledge base and the world’s information at their fingertips, these librarians follow deviously difficult clues that lead them out of the stacks and into danger. The books set in libraries include a haunted village library, the great New York Public Library, and a library in a lighthouse.

Death Overdue

by Allison Brook

Carrie Singleton is just about done with Clover Ridge, CT until she's offered a job as the head of programs and events at the spooky local library, complete with its own librarian ghost. Her first program is presented by a retired homicide detective, Al Buckley, who claims he knows who murdered Laura Foster, a much-loved part-time library aide who was bludgeoned to death fifteen years earlier. As he invites members of the audience to share stories about Laura, he suddenly keels over and dies. Driven by guilt, Carrie’s determined to discover who murdered the detective, convinced it’s the same man who killed Laura all those years ago. Death Overdue was a Mystery Guild/Literary Guild selection and is a nominee for the Agatha award for Best Contemporary Novel.

Crooked Lane Books, 2017.

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Findings

by Mary Anna Evans

Douglass Everett is the closest thing Faye Longchamp has to a father. When he is brutally beaten during an invasion of his Florida home, archaeologist Faye is driven to find out why, especially since the thieves took nothing but her field notes. Her search for the truth takes her to Civil War reenactors, violent pothunters, and a rare book library, where she finds poignant love letters, the threat of death, and the love of her life. Book Club Central readers will enjoy Findings for its plot twists, its exploration of unusual crannies of history, and its portrayal of love in all of its forms—parental love, friendship, and once-in-a-lifetime romance.

Poisoned Pen, 2008.

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A Murder for the Books

by Victoria Gilbert

Fleeing a disastrous love affair, university librarian Amy Webber moves in with her aunt in a quiet, historic mountain town in Virginia. When inexplicable murders plunge the town into chaos, Amy and her attractive neighbor, dancer and choreographer Richard Muir, must crack open the books to reveal a cruel conspiracy and lay a turbulent past to rest. A Murder for the Books is the first installment in the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series, written by a librarian with over thirty years’ experience in the field and is thus vividly true to its library setting.

Crooked Lane Books, 2017.

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Click to Read the Booklist Review.

Murder in the Manuscript Room

by Con Lehane

When a murder desecrates the somber, book-lined halls of New York City’s iconic 42nd Street Library, Raymond Ambler, the library’s curator of crime fiction, has a personal interest in solving the crime. His quest to solve the murder is complicated by personal entanglements involving his friend―or perhaps more-than-friend―Adele Morgan. Not only does Adele’s relationship with the young woman staffer who was murdered get in the way of Ambler’s investigation, more disturbing for him is Adele’s growing interest in a darkly handsome Islamic scholar.

Minotaur, 2017.

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Never Laugh as a Hearse Goes By

by Elizabeth J. Duncan

Habitual amateur sleuth Penny Brannigan finds herself at a clerical conference at North Wales’ Gladstone's Library, the United Kingdom’s finest residential library with a stunning library downstairs and hotel rooms upstairs. But behind the ornate red sandstone facade of this most respectable of Victorian buildings, Penny encounters deception, blackmail, and murder when the bishop's secretary dies of a suspicious case of food poisoning. Never Laugh as a Hearse Goes By was a finalist for the Bloody Words Award for Canada’s best light mystery.

Minotaur, 2013.

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Reading Up a Storm

by Eva Gates

After a successful party at Bodie Island’s Lighthouse Library, librarian Lucy Richardson is ready to curl up with her cat, Charles, and a good book. But her R and R is cut short when she notices some mysterious lights leading a small boat to crash into the coast. The two seafarers survive, but one of them shows up dead ashore a few days later. Lucy is again roped into a murder investigation and this time she has a sinking feeling that it won’t be so easy. This is the third book in a cozy mystery series set in a library in a lighthouse on North Carolina’s Outer Banks by Vicky Delaney, writing as Eva Gates.

Berkley, 2016.

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Too Lucky to Live

by Annie Hogsett

Lonely and broke, sassy part-time librarian Allie Harper has just rescued PhD Tom, a hot blind guy who has a one-way ticket to 550 million dollars' worth of murder and mayhem in his grocery bag—a lottery ticket he bought to prove to a young boy that gambling doesn’t pay. What kind of luck is that? Really, really good. Really, really bad. Too many people know he won and think they deserve a share of the money—and will kill to get it. The couple go on the run and do everything they can to stay alive—and maybe get lucky in love.

Poisoned Pen, 2017.

Click to Read an Excerpt.

Visit the Author's Website.

Click to Read the Booklist Review.

Native New Englander Shari Randall is the author of the Lobster Shack mystery series coming from St. Martin's Press in 2018. She loves being the Sister in Crime's Library Liaison because the role combines two of her favorite things: writing and libraries.

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