Mystery Writers Who Write Other Genres

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Jamie Canaves

Contributing Editor

Jamie Canavés is the Tailored Book Recommendations coordinator and Unusual Suspects mystery newsletter writer–in case you’re wondering what you do with a Liberal Arts degree. She’s never met a beach she didn’t like, always says yes to dessert, loves ‘80s nostalgia, all forms of entertainment, and can hold a conversation using only gifs. You can definitely talk books with her on Litsy and Goodreads. Depending on social media’s stability maybe also Twitter and Bluesky.

This post was originally published in our mystery/thriller newsletter, Unusual Suspects. Sign up for it here to get mystery news, reviews, deals, and more!

Hi mystery fans! I thought I’d mention mystery writers who also write in other genres because it’s a great way to explore in your reading life—if you already love a writer’s work in one genre it may be a good bridge into another genre.

Untamed Shore cover image

Untamed Shore by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Silvia Moreno-Garcia has finally gotten the recognition she should have gotten a long time ago for her new gothic suspense/horror novel Mexican Gothic (so good!). But she has great work in many genres: for slow-burn suspense you have Untamed Shore (Review); she has one of my favorite vampire novels with her urban fantasy Certain Dark Things (Review); for a coming-of-age with some fabulism start with her first novel Signal to Noise set in Mexico City in the ’80s; for romantic historical fantasy you’ll want to pick up The Beautiful Ones; and for historical fantasy inspired by Mexican folklore grab Gods of Jade and Shadow.

When No One is Watching by Alyssa Cole

Alyssa Cole put out her first social thriller this year, knocking it out of the park, but she was already an established romance author. And because romance is a vast genre, with many different types that Cole also writes in, there is definitely lots to explore: for a contemporary romance series that starts with an African prince the heroine mistakes for an internet scam, pick up A Princess in Theory; if you want to see an author actually pull off a historical romance set during the Civil War (spies!), start with An Extraordinary Union; and if you need some romance in your dystopia, start with Radio Silence.

Goldie Vance

Goldie Vance: The Hotel Whodunit (Goldie Vance #1) by Lilliam Rivera

Lilliam Rivera is currently writing the middle grade series Goldie Vance based off the graphic novel series. But she’s also an essayist and has YA novels that are contemporary, dystopian, and magical realism: The Education of Margot Sánchez is a great coming-of-age novel with a fantastic voice; the dystopian Dealing in Dreams explores family, addiction, and gender roles with a girl gang; Never Look Back is an Afro-Latinx retelling of the Orpheus and Eurydice Greek myth; and you can find her essay in the anthology Body Talk: 37 Voices Explore Our Radical Anatomy.

The Other Americans by Laila Lalami

Laila Lalami wrote a beautiful crime novel, The Other Americans, for fans of literary novels with a hit-and-run mystery running throughout (Review). But she also has a historical fiction novel that was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for fiction, The Moor’s Account. Her latest work is nonfiction, Conditional Citizens: On Belonging in America. And she also writes short stories, Gods and Soldiers: The Penguin Anthology of Contemporary African Writing. She has a deep catalog to dive into for anyone looking for beautiful writing.

Death Prefers Blondes by Caleb Roehrig

In the last few years Caleb Roehrig seems to have been writing up a storm. Not only does he have three YA mysteries—Death Prefers Blondes (Review); White Rabbit (Review); Last Seen Leaving—but he also has a fantasy novel for vampire fans, The Fell Of The Dark and the start to a horror series for werewolf and Riverdale fans, A Werewolf in Riverdale. For fans of short stories he is a contributor to a few anthologies: Life Is Short and Then You Die: Mystery Writers of America Presents First Encounters with MurderOut Now: Queer We Go Again!His Hideous Heart. All the work I’ve read so far is both fun and heartfelt and I always look forward to what may be coming next.