14 Mystery Books Your Kids Won't Be Able to Put Down
For young bookworms and children who are just getting comfortable with chapter books, the mystery genre is almost always the best way to go. Chock-full of suspenseful plots that make little ones want to continue turning the page long after bedtime, it's no wonder that books steeped in clues and capers are often at the top of readers' lists.
Whether you have a kid at home who can't get through books fast enough or your kiddo is reluctant when it comes to cracking open the cover, these just-for-kids mystery books are interesting enough to keep just about anyone's attention. Scroll through to get a look at and shop some of our favorite titles!
Geared toward kids 12 and up, Chasing Vermeer ($7 and up) centers on how seemingly unrelated events bring the characters Petra and Calder together. Eventually, they find themselves in the middle of an international art scandal and rely on a series of clues to find the real culprits.
Murder Is Bad Manners
Set in a 1930s boarding school, Murder Is Bad Manners ($8) is about two best friends who form a secret detective agency. Their only issue? There's nothing to investigate . . . until they find their science teacher's body! Kids 10 and up will love this book by Robin Stevens.
Clubhouse Mysteries: Lost in the Tunnel of Time
Children 8 and up will love this story about the Underground Railroad, which happened to tunnel right under Ziggy's hometown in Clubhouse Mysteries: Lost in the Tunnel of Time ($6 and up).
The Case of the Missing Marquess
Perfect for kids between 9 and 12 years old, The Case of the Missing Marquess ($7 and up) follows Enola Holmes — yep, sister to the detective Sherlock Holmes! — on her mission to find her mom, who's mysteriously disappeared in London. Suddenly caught up in the kidnapping of a young marquess, Enola has to use her wits to escape the bad guys.
The Fairy-Tale Detectives Kids: The Sisters Grimm
A great option for readers 9 and up, The Fairy-Tale Detectives Kids: The Sisters Grimm ($8 and up) follows orphaned sisters, Sabrina and Daphne, who are sent to live with their mysterious grandmother in a town in New York known for inexplicable crimes.
From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler
A classic book that many read in school, From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler ($8 and up) centers on Claudia and her younger brother, Jamie, who run away only to escape "right into a mystery that made headlines!" This beloved title is perfect for kids ages 6 to 10.
The Hardy Boys and The Tower Treasure
An oldie but a goodie for kiddos ages 8 and up, The Hardy Boys and The Tower Treasure ($8 and up) will get even the most reluctant reader interested with this mystery that begins with a dying criminal confessing his loot has been stored in a secret tower.
Nancy Drew and the Mystery of the Old Clock
The first book in the iconic series, Nancy Drew and the Mystery of the Old Clock ($8 and up) follows a teenage sleuth on a hunt for a missing will. Readers 8 and up will absolutely fall in love with these books by Carolyn Keene.
Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief Kids
Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief Kids ($7 and up) tells the story of a girl who sees a crime happening IRL. Determined to catch the perpetrator, she goes to great lengths to track down the mysterious man. Or is he the one following her? Kids 10 and up should read to find out.
The Westing Game
This Newbery Medal winner can be best described as "a bizarre chain of events [that] begins when sixteen unlikely people gather for the reading of Samuel W. Westing's will." The Westing Game ($8 and up) is sure to leave kids 10 and up on the edge of their seats.