Lately, I’ve only been in the mood for silly books — and nothing hits the spot more than an outrageously funny mystery. Of courses Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series is one of my go-tos, but there are plenty of other funny mystery books that strike that perfect balance between mystery and absurdity.
These nine funny mystery books are all as hilarious as they are twisty and puzzling. Feel free to pick your poison: whether you’re in the mood for a quirky cozy or something with a more grim sense of humor, you’ll be laughing out loud in no time.
Finlay Donovan is Killing It by Elle Cosimano
When struggling mystery writer Finlay Donovan learns that she’s in jeopardy of losing custody of her kids, she is desperate to find a job with stable income. Being a hired assassin was not exactly what she had in mind, but that’s what fate — or, rather, a stranger at Panera — offers her. But when someone else kills her target before she can untangle herself from the whole business, she’s forced to hide the body and find the murderer before she’s accused of the crime.
Posted to Death (Simon Kirby-Jones #1) by Dean James
American Simon Kirby-Jones hopes to settle into a quiet life blending in as a totally normal expat in an English village. Difficult when you’re a gay vampire, but somehow he manages. But when a murder upends his charming neighborhood, he’s forced to uncover the secrets — and culprit — behind the shocking crime.
Hollywood Homicide (Detective by Day #1) by Kellye Garrett
Following a financial rough patch, all actress Dayna Anderson wants is to help her parents keep the family home. After witnessing a hit-and-run, Dayna is determined to catch the killer — at first for the reward money but later to avenge the victim’s untimely death. But the further Dayna descends into Hollywood’s criminal underbelly, the more she puts herself in danger of being permanently silenced.
Fan Fiction by Brent Spiner (October 5, St. Martin’s Press)
The year is 1991, and a fictional version of Star Trek actor Brent Spiner receives a series of threatening packages at his trailer. Rather than wait for an incompetent detective to fail at catching the criminal, Brent goes on a mission to catch the stalker himself — preferably before they find and kill him. Darkly comedic, this mystery blurs the line between fandom and obsession and examines what happens when celebrity worship becomes unhinged.
Dial A for Aunties by Jesse Q. Sutanto
Meddelin “Meddy” Chan didn’t mean to kill her blind date, but, well…accidents happen. It’s up to her aunties and their family wedding business to keep Meddy from getting charged for murder and maybe even help her find a happily-ever-after with her ex-boyfriend.
Somebody Killed His Editor (Holmes and Moriarty #1) by Josh Lanyon
After his boyfriend and agent break up with him right after his 40th birthday, mystery writer Christopher Homes feels like life couldn’t get worse. He realizes how wrong he is when he finds his editor murdered in the woods. Life always has a way of hitting a new rock bottom. With the help of an old flame who returns to his life, can Christopher bring the murderer to justice and clear his name?
Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency (Dirk Gently #1) by Douglas Adams
Dirk Gently is a private investigator with an unusual theory about the interconnectedness of the universe. When an unexplainable murder occurs, Dirk believes the key to proving his theory — and maybe even saving humanity — lies in solving it.
My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkin Braithwaite
If you like macabre humor, then this one’s for you. After her sister Ayoola kills her third boyfriend “out of self-defense,” Korede begins to suspect something sinister is afoot. Rather than go to the police and risk her sister getting arrested, Korede reluctantly agrees to help Ayoola clean up the bodies. But when Ayoola starts dating a doctor who Korede has feelings for, Korede is forced to choose between protecting her sister from prosecution or saving her crush’s life.
Tuesday Mooney Talks to Ghosts by Kate Racculia
Data researcher Tuesday Mooney prefers an antisocial life, if she can help it. But when an eccentric billionaire dies, setting off a citywide scavenger hunt for his fortune, Tuesday is roped into the mayhem. Along with an unlikely group of aspiring treasure hunters, Tuesday must use her wits and strength to find the prize before anyone else can.
If you’re looking for more funny mystery books, you can’t go wrong with cozies. Check out 25 of the Best Cozy Mystery Series to find the next addition to your TBR pile.