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Down the Rabbit Hole by Peter Abrahams

Grades 6-8 (375 pages) Echo Falls Mystery series

Like her idol, Sherlock Holmes, eighth grader Ingrid Levin-Hill uses her intellect to solve a murder case in her hometown Echo Falls.

 

The Wolves of Willoughby Chase by Joan Aiken

Grades 4-6 (168 pages)

Left in the care of a wicked, scheming governess, two cousins endure a perilous flight through the snow in the dark of night.

 

The Lost Treasure of the Golden Sun by Carol A. Amato

Grades 4-7 (172 pages)

Anny, who has psychic powers and her twin sister Scout visit their friend Ben, a Navajo Indian, and try to solve the mystery of a lost Spanish treasure.

 

The Last Treasure by Janet S. Anderson

Grades 5-8 (257 pages) 

Thirteen-year-old Ellsworth leaves his father to visit the relatives he has never met and eventually joins forces with Jess, his distant cousin, to uncover family secrets and search for their ancestor's hidden treasure.

 

The Clue of the Linoleum Lederhosen by M.T. Anderson

Grades 4-7 (243 pages) Sequel to Whales on Stilts

Looking forward to a vacation, Katie, Lily, and Jasper attach their flying Gyroscopic Sky Suite to the Moose Tongue Lodge and Resort, where they mingle with other child heroes found in books, and where they become embroiled in a mystery involving lederhosen-clothed quintuplets and a screaming ventriloquist.

 

Who Stole the Wizard of Oz by Avi

Grades 4-6 (116 pages)

Becky and her brother use some ingenious clues to identify the person who stole five valuable children’s books from the town’s library.

 

Windcatcher by Avi 

Grades 4-7 (124 pages)

While learning to sail during a visit to his grandmother’s at the Connecticut shore, eleven-year-old Tony becomes excited about the rumors of sunken treasure in the area and starts following a couple who seem to be making a mysterious search for something.

 

Voices at Whisper Bend by Katherine Ayres

Grades 5-8 (162 pages) American Girl History Mystery series

In their Pennsylvania town in 1942 twelve-year-old Charlotte and her classmates collect scrap metal for the war effort only to have it disappear from the school basement.

 

Goody Hall by Natalie Babbitt

Grades 4-6 (176 pages)

The new tutor at Goody Hall is pleased with his job but can’t help feeling there is something peculiar about the household.

 

What’s a Daring Detective Like Me Doing in the Doghouse? by Linda Bailey

Grades 4-6 (185 pages) Stevie Diamond series

Stevie Diamond and her friend Jessie Kulniki combine Stevie’s job walking dogs with their efforts to apprehend the prankster, who is responsible for a series of not-so-serious crimes around Vancouver.

 

Chasing Vermeer by Blue Balliett

Grades 5-8 (254 pages) Audiobook available

When seemingly unrelated and strange events start to happen and a precious Vermeer painting disappears, eleven-year-olds Petra and Calder combine their talents to solve an international art scandal.

Secret of the Underground Room by John Bellairs

Grades 5-7 (127 pages)

When Father Higgins disappears, Johnny Dixon and Professor Childermass discover disturbing clues which lead them to England and an encounter with a long-dead knight.

 

The Silver Balloon by Susan Bonners

Grades 3-6 (71 pages)

When fourth-grader, Gregory, releases a helium-filled balloon into the sky with his name and address attached, it leads to an unusual friendship and an exchange of mystery gifts.

 

Shakespeare’s Secret by Elise Broach

Grades 4-7 (250 pages) Audiobook available

Named after a character in a Shakespeare play, misfit sixth-grader Hero becomes interested in exploring this unusual connection because of a valuable diamond supposedly hidden in her new house, an intriguing neighbor, and the unexpected attention of the most popular boy in school.

 

Coffin on a Case by Eve Bunting

Grades 4-6 (105 pages)

Twelve-year-old Henry Coffin, the son of a private investigator, helps a gorgeous high school girl in her dangerous attempt to find her kidnapped mother.

 

The Hideout by Eve Bunting

Grades 5-7 (133 pages)

Feeling unloved by his mother and new stepfather, Andy hides out in a luxurious San Francisco hotel and stages his own kidnapping in order to obtain ransom money to pay for a trip to England to see his father.

 

Someone Is Hiding on Alcatraz Island by Eve Bunting

Grades 4-7 (136 pages)

When he offends the toughest gang in his San Francisco school, Danny tries to elude them by going to Alcatraz only to find himself and a Park Service employee trapped by the gang in an old prison cell block.

 

King of Murder by Betsy Cromer Byars

Grades 4-6 (115 pages) Herculeah Jones series

Herculeah meets a murder mystery writer, and has the uneasy feeling that he knows more about murder than he should.

 

Behind the Attic Wall by Sylvia Cassedy

Grades 4-7 (315 pages)

In the bleak, forbidding house of her great-aunts, neglected twelve-year-old orphan Maggie hears ghostly voices and finds magic that awakens in her the capacity to love and be loved.

 

Utterly Me, Clarice Bean by Lauren Child

Grades 2-5 (190 pages)

When someone steals the winner's trophy for the school book project, Clarice emulates her favorite book heroine, Ruby Redfort the detective.

 

Penalty Shot by Matt Christopher

Grades 3-6 (127 pages)

Jeff, already worried about losing his place on the hockey team because of low grades, suddenly finds himself the victim of sabotage in the form of forged papers.

 

Half Moon Investigations by Eoin Colfer

Grades 4-7 (290 pages) Audiobook available

Framed for a serious crime, 12-year-old Fletcher Moon has only 12 hours to find the guilty party and clear his name.

 

The Big House by Carolyn Coman

Grades 3-6 (220 pages)

Named after a character in a Shakespeare play, misfit sixth-grader Hero becomes interested in exploring this connection because of a valuable diamond supposedly hidden in her new house, an intriguing neighbor, and the unexpected attention of the most popular boy in school.

 

On the Edge by Gillian Cross

Grades 5-8 (170 pages)

Two young people discover unknown strengths inside themselves when one is kidnapped and the other tries to save him.

 

Mr. Chickee’s Funny Money by Christopher Paul Curtis

Grades 3-6 (151 pages)

Flint Future Detective Club members Steven Carter, his friend Russell, and Russell's huge dog Zoopy solve the mystery of a quadrillion-dollar bill with the image of James Brown on it.

 

The Case of the Cat with the Missing Ear collected and edited by Scott Emerson

Grades 4-6 (237 pages)

In 1887, in a San Francisco populated by dogs, retired veterinarian Dr. Edward R. Smithfield and his friend, Mr. Samuel Blackthorne, attempt to solve the mysterious disappearance of an unassuming accountant.

 

Last Shot: A Final Four Mystery by John Feinstein

Grades 5-8 (251 pages)

After winning a basketball reporting contest, eighth-graders Stevie and Susan Carol are sent to cover the Final Four tournament, where they discover that a talented player is being blackmailed into throwing the final game.

 

Mary Moon is Missing by Patricia Reilly Giff

Grades 3-5 (74 pages) Adventures of Minnie and Max

Assisted by her cat, Max, and her friend Cash, Minnie tries to find Mary Moon, a valuable racing pigeon that has disappeared just before a big race.

 

The House on the Gulf by Margaret Haddix

Grades 4-8 (201 pages)

A sixteen-year-old boy arranges a housesitting job for the summer, but he starts acting strangely after his family moves in, and his sister begins to suspect they are not supposed to be there.

 

Farewell, My Lunchbag; From the Tattered Casebook of Chet Gecko, Private Eye

by Bruce Hale

Grades 4-6 (102 pages) Chet Gecko series

When fourth-grade private eye, Chet Gecko is called to catch someone who is stealing food from the school cafeteria, he finds himself framed for the crime.

 

To Scratch a Thief by Holm & Hamel

Grades 4-6 (131 pages) Stink Files series

An enemy from Mr. Stink's past is targeting his new suburban family, and the international cat of mystery must discover the identity of his nemesis and defeat him.

 

Time Stops for No Mouse by Michael Hoeye

Grades 5-8 (250 pages) Hermux Tantamoq series

Watchmaker Hermux Tantamoq is caught up in a world of danger as he searches for Linka Perflinger, an aviatrix mouse, who disappears after bringing in a watch for repairs.

 

Following Fake Man by Barbara Ware Holmes

Grades 4-7 (228 pages)

During his summer in Maine, twelve-year-old Homer, together with his new friend Roger, is determined to find the truth about himself, his long-dead father, and a mysterious costumed man.

 

The Ghost in the Tokaido Inn by Dorothy and Thomas Hoobler

Grades 4-8 (214 pages) Sequel: The Demon in the Teahouse

While attempting to solve the mystery of a stolen jewel, Seikei, a merchant’s son who longs to be a Samurai, joins a group of Kabuki actors in eighteenth-century Japan.

 

The Sword That Cut the Burning Grass by Dorothy and Thomas Hoobler

Grades 4-8 (211 pages)

In his latest adventure in eighteenth-century Japan, fourteen-year-old samurai apprentice Seikei, with the help of a servant girl and an imperious old man, sets out to rescue the young Emperor Yasuhito from his kidnappers.

 

The Falcon’s Malteser by Anthony Horowitz

Grades 4-8 (191 pages) Diamond Brothers Mystery

After his older brother, a fledgling private detective, agrees to safeguard a package for a dwarf who does not live long, thirteen-year-old Nick scampers to solve the mystery while also trying to stay one step ahead of an assortment of thugs.

 

Stormbreaker by Anthony Horowitz

Grades 4-7 (192 pages) Audiobook available — Alex Rider series

After the death of the uncle who had been his guardian, fourteen-year-old Alex Rider is coerced to continue his uncle’s dangerous work for Britain’s intelligence agency.

 

Bunnicula by Deborah and James Howe

Grades 4-6 (98 pages) First in a series

Though scoffed at by Harold the dog, Chester the cat tries to warn his human family that their foundling baby bunny must be a vampire.

 

Hoofbeats of Danger by Holly Hughes

Grade 4-6 (130 pages) American Girl History Mystery series

In 1860, eleven-year-old Annie, who lives at the Red Buttes Pony Express station in the Nebraska Territory, asks Pony Express rider Billy Cody to help her find the person responsible for sabotaging her favorite pony, Magpie.

 

Regarding the Fountain by Kate Klise

Grades 4-7 (138 pages) First in a series

A fifth grade class uncovers a scandal when they become involved in the plans to purchase a new drinking fountain for their school.

 

Tiger, Tiger, Burning Bright by Ron Koertge

Grades 5-7 (179 pages)

Worried that his mother will send his beloved grandfather to a nursing home “for his own good,” Jesse and some of his eighth-grade classmates accompany Pappy into the mountains near their small California town to look for the tiger tracks he claims to have seen.

 

From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E. L. Konigsburg

Grades 4-7 (179 pages)

A girl and her younger brother run away from home home and take up residence at the Metropolitan Museum of Art where they come across a beautiful and mysterious statue.  Determined to discover its maker, they first have to find the statue’s former owner, the reclusive and mischievous Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, and then sort through her incredibly mixed up files.

 

Dog Days by David Lubar

Grades 3-5 (78 pages)

Long, lazy days of summer, dog days, have come at last. Larry looks forward to the two things he loves most: playing baseball and taking care of his three dogs. Then his little brother Paul interrupts the fun by dragging Larry to the scene of a mystery.

 

A Deadly Game of Magic by Joan Lowery Nixon

Grades 6-8 (148 pages)

Lisa and her three friends find themselves unwilling players in a cat-and-mouse game with a murderous magician whose identity and motivation baffle them.

 

Sea Chase by Curtis Parkinson

Grades 5-8 (185 pages)

When fifteen-year-old Brodie finds out his father has been lost overboard in the Caribbean, he decides to search for him in dangerous waters.

 

Someone Was Watching by David Patneaude

Grades 6-8 (220 pages)

When his baby sister disappears from the river near their summer home, eighth grader Chris fights the assumption that she has drowned and uncovers evidence that something entirely different has happened to her.

 

The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin

Grades 5-8 (185 pages) Audiobook available

The mysterious death of an eccentric millionaire brings together an unlikely assortment of heirs who must uncover the circumstances of his death before they can claim their inheritance.

 

Riddle of the Prairie Bride by Kathryn Reiss

Grades 4-7 (161 pages) American Girl History Mystery series

In 1878, twelve-year-old Ida Kate and her widowed father welcome a mail-order-bride and her baby to their Kansas homestead, but Ida Kate soon suspects that the bride is not the woman with whom Papa has corresponded.

 

From Charlie’s Point of View by Richard Scrimger

Grades 5-8 (278 pages)

Best friends Bernadette and Charlie begin seventh grade and help unravel the mysterious case of the Stocking Bandit.

 

Finding Lubchenko by Michael Simmons

Grades 6-8 (280 pages) Audiobook available – Sequel: The Rise of Lubchenko

When his father is framed for murder and bioterrorism, high-school junior Evan, using clues from a stolen laptop, travels from Seattle to Paris with two friends to find the real culprit.

 

Secret of the Three Treasures by Janni Lee Simner

Grades 3-5 (134 pages)

While pretending to be the heroine of her father's adventure novels, Tiernay discovers new friends, buried Revolutionary War treasure, and answers to a long-ago mystery.

 

Rage of Fire by Gloria Skurzynski and Alane Ferguson

Grades 5-7 (147 pages) National Parks Mystery series

Jack, Ashley, and their parents visit Hawaii where they meet a Vietnamese boy who is going to live with his American grandfather whom he has never met, and are pursued by the Goddess Pele.

 

The Egypt Game by Zilpha Keatly Snyder

Grades 4-6 (215 pages) Sequel: The Gypsy Game

A band of children are unaware of the role they will play in the search for a murderer when they invent a secret and elaborate game of ancient Egypt.

 

The Case of the Missing Marquess by Nancy Springer 

Grades 4-8 (216 pages) Audiobook available – Enola Holmes Mystery series

Flint Future Detective Club members Steven Carter, his friend Russell, and Russell's huge dog Zoopy solve the mystery of a quadrillion-dollar bill with the image of James Brown on it.

 

The Face in the Mirror by Stephanie S. Tolan

Grades 6-8 (214 pages)

Joining his estranged father in a professional production of Shakespeare’s “Richard III,” Jared tries to cope with acting insecurities, his obnoxious half brother, and a theater ghost.

 

Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief by Wendelin Van Draanan

Grades 4-7 (168 pages) Audiobook availableSammy Keyes series

Thirteen-year-old Sammy’s penchant for speaking her mind gets her in trouble when she involves herself in the investigation of a robbery at the “seedy” hotel across the street from the seniors’ building where she is living with her grandmother.

 

Belle Prater’s Boy by Ruth White

Grades 4-7 (196 pages) Audiobook available – Sequel: The Search for Belle Prater

When Woodrow’s mother suddenly disappears, he moves to his grandparents’ home in a small Virginia town where he befriends his cousin and together they find the strength to face the terrible losses and fears of their lives. 

 

Skater Stuntboys by Pam Withers

Grades 5-8 (191 pages)

Fifteen-year-old Jake and Peter are happy to get jobs as stunt performers on a movie set but trouble is everywhere and they have to find out who is trying to sabotage the set before something bad happens.

 

The Case of the Goblin Pearls by Laurence Yep

Grades 3-7 (179 pages) Chinatown Mystery series

Lily and her aunt, a Chinese American movie actress, join forces to solve the theft of some priceless pearls and stop the operator of a sweatshop in San Francisco’s Chinatown.

 

The E-Mail Murders by Paul Zindel

Grades 5-8 (113 pages) P.C. Hawke Mystery series

Sleuth P.C. and his friend Mackenzie decide to investigate when a serial murderer kills someone in their hotel.

 

 

Popular Mystery Series

 

 

A to Z Mysteries by Ron Roy 

        Grades 2-4

American Girl History Mysteries by various authors

        Grades 3-6

Bailey School Kids by Debbie Dadey

        Grades 2-4   

Boxcar Children Mysteries by Gertrude Chandler Warner

         Grades 3-6

Cam Jansen by David Adler

        Grades 1-3

Capital Mysteries by Ron Roy

        Grades 2-4

Chet Gecko Mysteries by Bruce Hale

        Grades 3-6

Encyclopedia Brown by Donald Sobol

        Grades 3-6

Hardy Boys by Franklin W. Dixon

        Grades 3-6

High Rise Private Eyes by Cynthia Rylant

        Grades 1-3

Jigsaw Jones Mysteries by James Preller

        Grades 2-4

Nancy Drew: Girl Detective by Carolyn Keene

        Grades 4-6

Nancy Drew Notebooks by Carolyn Keene

        Grades 2-4

Nate the Great by Marjorie Weinman Sharmat

        Grades 1-3

National Parks Mysteries by Gloria Skurzynski

        Grades 5-7

P.C. Hawke Mysteries by Paul Zindel

        Grades 5-8

Sammy Keyes by Wendelin Van Draanan

        Grades 4-7

Stevie Diamond Mysteries by Linda Bailey

        Grades 4-6

Three Investigators by various authors

        Grades 5-8

Young Mandie Mysteries by Lois Gladys Leppard

        Grades 4-7

Young Cam Jansen by David Adler (JE Adler)

        Grades 1-3