book lists bookish posts

Favorite YA mysteries

yaThe Agency series by YS Lee: I looove these books. Mary Quinn is a great main character, and Lee is such a deft writer when it comes to both the historical details and the mysteries (two things it is easy to get wrong). This series is wonderfully immersive, and Lee recognizes Mary’s liminal, somewhat precarious status while also not letting that limit who she is and what she does.

Palace of Spies & sequels by Sarah Zettel: I can’t think of any other YA books set in Georgian England (and why not! It’s such an interesting time period), and I’ve really been liking Peggy’s story. They’re slightly frothy mysteries that are engaging for the historical fiction fan.

Jackaby by William Ritter: A historical supernatural mystery, with a Sherlock-like main character. This sounds like a lot of buzz words, but Ritter manages to pull the story into something cohesive and interesting. The second book is out now, but I haven’t read it yet.

Flavia de Luce series by Alan Bradley: I hesitated over whether to add this series for two reasons. First, I don’t actually love them quite as much as other readers seem to. Second, they’re usually considered adult rather than YA. However, I think that for the right teen reader, Flavia’s exploits would be hugely fun.

The Ashbury High series by Jaclyn Moriarty: Some of the books in this series are more mystery-y than others, but all of them are hugely delightful and The Murder of Bindy MacKenzie is 1) a mystery and 2) MY FAVORITE so they’re going on the list anyway.

Heist Society by Ally Carter: While heist books aren’t exactly the same thing as mysteries, this series from Carter does have a mystery aspect to it. It’s light, fun reading, and I’ve really enjoyed this series.

The Caged Graves by Dianne K Salerni: I read this book for the Cybils a few years ago and was surprised by just how much I liked this historical mystery. Both the characters and the details of time and place worked well for me, and I liked the way the mystery was set up.

Looking at this list, it seems woefully lacking in any kind of diversity, aside from YS Lee’s books. Any suggestions for #ownvoices YA mysteries?

By Maureen LaFerney

My name is Maureen. I currently work as a library assistant in a public library in the Indianapolis area, and also just so happen to be a voracious reader. I frequently end up under a cat.

One reply on “Favorite YA mysteries”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.