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10 Exhilarating Fantasy Mystery Books to Transport You Out of This World

Mystery? Check. Supernatural beings? Also check. 

fantasy mystery feature image

Intertwining elements of fantasy and mystery, this addictive subgenre creates captivating narratives that blend magic, mythical creatures, and otherworldly settings with the intrigue of solving a puzzling crime or unraveling a mysterious plot.

Fantasy-mystery books often feature protagonists who possess supernatural abilities or find themselves in extraordinary circumstances, adding an extra layer of complexity to the traditional mystery formula. Whether set in sprawling magical realms or hidden corners of our own world, fantasy mystery novels invite readers on thrilling journeys filled with twists, turns, and unexpected revelations.

In fantasy mystery books, authors skillfully weave together elements of both genres to create unique worlds where anything is possible, and the boundaries between reality and the fantastical blur. Readers are drawn into intricate plots where they must navigate a landscape of magic and mystery, solving clues alongside characters who grapple with both the supernatural and the unexplainable.

From uncovering ancient prophecies to solving murders in enchanted forests, the fantasy mystery genre offers a rich tapestry of storytelling that appeals to fans of both fantasy and mystery alike, providing escapism, excitement, and a sense of wonder with each turn of the page.

Books set in the everyday world can only do so much, but when you open the door to possibilities outside of this reality, you're exposing yourself to a whole new host of plot points. For example, any detective can investigate your run-of-the-mill murder mystery, but when the crime involves paranormal creatures and alternate realities? You get the picture. 

If you're interested in discovering the engrossing world of fantasy mysteries, we've selected a sampling of books to get you started.

Looking to add some extra intrigue to your TBR? Look no further than this collection of exhilarating fantasy mystery books.

rivers of london for fantasy mystery book update mm jan 2024

Rivers of London

By Ben Aaronovitch

Probationary Constable Peter Grant wants nothing more than to become a detective in London's Metropolitan Police…a goal that seems to slip further and further away as his superior plans to assign him to the Case Progression Unit. But everything changes when he's put on the case of a perplexing murder, and the exclusive information he receives comes from a ghost eyewitness. 

Detective Chief Inspector Thomas Nightingale, an investigator of magical and otherwise bizarre crimes, finds out about Peter's ability to speak to the dead. Now, as brutal yet also magical murders begin spreading across the city, Peter finds himself in the midst of a world where gods and men coexist and a once-dead evil is coming back for seconds. 

books like The Magicians

Storm Front

By Jim Butcher

Harry Dresden is a professional wizard who knows the world is full of more magical things than meets the eye. He also recognizes that most strange creatures don’t play nicely with the human population. 

When the Chicago P.D. brings him in to work with them on a double homicide involving black magic, he jumps at the opportunity to make some much-needed cash. But can he solve the case before the black mage behind it gets to him first?


First Grave on the Right

By Darynda Jones

Charley Davidson—part-time investigator and full-time grim reaper—connects with spirits to solve the injustices that led to their deaths, so they can go to the other side. She often investigates unsolved murder cases to bring the criminals to light and seek justice for her paranormal friends. 

But Charley gets distracted by the steamy dreams she's been having about a certain Entity—the one following her her whole life. Things get even weirder when Charley learns that the Entity might not even be dead after all, but something entirely different… 

The Labyrinth of Dreaming Books

The Labyrinth of Dreaming Books

By Walter Moers

Two hundred years ago, Bookhol was destroyed by a devastating fire—but the magnificent city has since been rebuilt and is once again a metropolis of storytelling and book trade. Hildegunst von Mythenmetz, known as the best writer on the continent of Zamonia, is on vacation when a message informs him that he must return to Bookholm to investigate a mystery. 

Once he arrives, Mythenmetz encounters old friends and new inhabitants of the shadowy "Invisible Theater." Follow along as Mythenmetz gets to the bottom of the mystery in this "yarn of drollery, deeper meaning, and sheer lunacy" (Rolling Stones). 

After Houdini

After Houdini

By Jeremy Holt, John Lucas and Adrian Crossa

Josef Houdini, son of the master magician Harry Houdini, is a gifted escape artist who can get himself out of any situation. But the position he was not expecting? Filling in for his father—a secretary operative stuck on a top-secret mission for the U. S. Government during WW I.

Does Josef have what it takes to save his father and make it back alive?

Blunt Force Magic

Blunt Force Magic

By Lawrence Davis

Five years after giving up his dream of fighting supernatural evils, Janzen Robinson lives a normal life as a package courier in Cleveland, Ohio. But when a dark creature is unleashed from the Abyss, Janzen is suddenly thrust back into his position as a protector—also known as an "Artificer." 

Blunt Force Magic explores the magical underbelly of Cleveland as Robinson tries to uncover why the creature was unleashed and, more importantly, how to stop it.

Death Warmed Over

Death Warmed Over

By Kevin J. Anderson

Vampires, werewolves, and other undead creatures have been released into the world by the Big Uneasy—and they are wreaking havoc. Zombie P. I. Dan Chambeaux and his human lawyer partner certainly have their work cut out for them! 

Just because he was murdered doesn't mean Chambeaux would leave his clients high and dry. Back from the dead and now busier than ever, Chambeaux's caseload includes a mummy suing the museum that put him on display, two witches seeking restitution for a curse gone wrong, and of course, his personal case…finding his own murderer.

magic for liars

Magic for Liars

By Sarah Gailey

Born powerless into a world of magic, Ivy Gamble always told herself she was perfectly happy with her magic-less life. She didn't wish at all to be more like her estranged twin sister, Tabitha, who was born with the gift. But Ivy Gamble is a liar. 

When a brutal murder is discovered at the magical institute where her sister teaches, detective Ivy Gamble reluctantly agrees to help. As she works through the case, Ivy gets pulled deeper and deeper into a world of dark magic and hidden secrets. Can Ivy find the murderer and reclaim her sister—without losing herself in the process?


The Eyre Affair

By Jasper Fforde

In this New York Times–bestselling novel, readers discover a version of Great Britain in the 1980s, in which time travel is standard, cloning extinct animals is a regular practice, and literature is taken very seriously.

Thursday Next is a renowned Special Operative in literary detection who regulates citizens committing literary crimes, such as forgetting Byronic verse. When someone decides to kidnap Jane Eyre from the pages of Brontë's novel, Thursday soon realizes she is in for the challenge of her career.   

a potion to die for by heather blake

A Potion to Die For

Carly Bell Hartwell is the owner of the Little Shop of Potions, and her product is in more demand than ever. After a loyal seer predicted a particular couple would soon divorce, husbands and wives have been flocking to her tiny store in Hitching Post, Alabama, for a potion that will ensure they stay, well, hitched. 

However, Carly quickly goes from beloved shopkeeper to number one suspect when a man drops dead in her store while clutching a potion bottle. Follow along as Carly works against the mob to clear her name—and find the real killer—before the townspeople decide her punishment should fit the crime. 

the ninth house

The Ninth House

By Leigh Bardugo

Galaxy "Alex" Stern was raised in L.A. by her hippie mom and ultimately dropped out of school to chase drug dealer boyfriends and dead-end jobs. She suddenly gets a second chance in life while in the hospital after surviving a multiple homicide. Alex is offered a chance to attend the prestigious Yale university on a full scholarship. Even though she knows there must be a catch, how could she pass up the opportunity?

But when Alex arrives in New Haven, she soon realizes the charming university is more sinister than it seems. The eight secret societies she's tasked with monitoring are practicing forbidden magic, raising the dead…and sometimes even preying on the living.