The Big Book of Christmas Mysteries

The Big Book of Christmas Mysteries - Otto Penzler

As I am writing this, I have only read about half of the 59 short stories in this collection - and it is likely that I will only finish reading the other stories next year.

 

However, I love the collection of stories in this volume. Sure, some are better than others, but the editors have made an effort to select stories with a variety of themes and grouped them into sections to cater for different moods:

 

A Traditional Little Christmas

A Funny Little Christmas

A Sherlockian Little Christmas

A Pulpy Little Christmas

An Uncanny Little Christmas

A Scary Little Christmas

A Surprising Little Christmas

A Modern Little Christmas

A Puzzling Little Christmas

A Classic Little Christmas

 

Some of the stories are more well-known than others, some overlap with other collections, but overall, this is exactly the kind of collection I love to dip in and out of for a little seasonal reading. 

 

A Note on Format: I started this book on the kindle, but am awaiting a paperback copy because I love to jump from theme to theme rather than try and read this collection from cover to cover - and as much as I love my kindle, it is rather useless at flipping back and forth between sections.

 

Full list of contents:

 

A Traditional Little Christmas

THE ADVENTURE OF THE CHRISTMAS PUDDING - Agatha Christie

GOLD, FRANKINCENSE AND MURDER - Catherine Aird

BOXING UNCLEVER - Robert Barnard

THE PROOF OF THE PUDDING - Peter Lovesey

THE ADVENTURE OF THE DAUPHIN’S DOLL - Ellery Queen

MORSE’S GREATEST MYSTERY - Colin Dexter

MORE THAN FLESH AND BLOOD - Susan Moody

THE BUTLER’S CHRISTMAS EVE - Mary Roberts Rinehart

THE TRINITY CAT - Ellis Peters

 

A Funny Little Christmas

THE BURGLAR AND THE WHATSIT - Donald E. Westlake

DANCING DAN’S CHRISTMAS - Damon Runyon

A VISIT FROM ST. NICHOLAS - Ron Goulart

 

THE THIEVES WHO COULDN’T HELP SNEEZING - Thomas Hardy

RUMPOLE AND THE SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS - John Mortimer

A REVERSIBLE SANTA CLAUS - Meredith Nicholson

 

A Sherlockian Little Christmas

A SCANDAL IN WINTER - Gillian Linscott

THE CHRISTMAS CLIENT - Edward D. Hoch

THE SECRET IN THE PUDDING BAG & HERLOCK SHOLMES’S CHRISTMAS CASE -  Peter Todd

CHRISTMAS EVE - S. C. Roberts

THE ADVENTURE OF THE BLUE CARBUNCLE - Arthur Conan Doyle

 

A Pulpy Little Christmas

DEAD ON CHRISTMAS STREET - John D. MacDonald

CRIME’S CHRISTMAS CAROL - Norvell

SERENADE TO A KILLER - Joseph Commings

 

An Uncanny Little Christmas

THE HAUNTED CRESCENT  - Peter Lovesey

A CHRISTMAS IN CAMP - Edmund Cox

THE CHRISTMAS BOGEY - Pat Frank

THE KILLER CHRISTIAN - Andrew Klavan

THE GHOST’S TOUCH - Fergus Hume

A WREATH FOR MARLEY - Max Allan Collins

 

A Scary Little Christmas

THE CAROL SINGERS - Josephine Bell

WAXWORKS - Ethel Lina White

CAMBRIC TEA - Marjorie Bowen

THE 74TH TALE - Jonathan Santlofer

THE UNINNOCENT - Bradford Morrow

BLUE CHRISTMAS - Peter Robinson

 

A Surprising Little Christmas

NOEL, NOEL - Barry Perowne

DEATH ON CHRISTMAS EVE - Stanley Ellin

THE CHINESE APPLE - Joseph Shearing

 

A Modern Little Christmas

AND ALL THROUGH THE HOUSE - Ed McBain

AN EARLY CHRISTMAS - Doug Allyn

THE LIVE TREE - John Lutz

THREE-DOT PO - Sara Paretsky

MAD DOG - Dick Lochte

 

A Puzzling Little Christmas

SISTER BESSIE - Cyril Hare

THAT’S THE TICKET - Mary Higgins Clark

DEATH ON THE AIR - Ngaio Marsh

THE THIRTEENTH DAY OF CHRISTMAS - Isaac Asimov

THE CHRISTMAS KITTEN - Ed Gorman

THE SANTA CLAUS CLUB - Julian Symons

 

A Classic Little Christmas

THE FLYING STARS  - G. K. Chesterton

CHRISTMAS PARTY - Rex Stout

THE RAFFLES RELICS - E. W. Hornung

THE PRICE OF LIGHT - Ellis Peters

A PRESENT FOR SANTA SAHIB - H. R. F. Keating

THE CHRISTMAS TRAIN - Will Scott

MARKHEIM - Robert Louis Stevenson

A CHAPARRAL CHRISTMAS GIFT - O. Henry

THE CHOPHAM AFFAIR - Edgar Wallace

A CHRISTMAS TRAGEDY - Agatha Christie