The Red Horse by James R. BennStarring: ex-cop Billy Boyle, an Irish American army captain serving in World War II, who's getting help for emotional and addiction issues at a special British hospital; his friend, Lieutenant "Kaz" Kazimierz, who had a heart attack during the Liberation of Paris and is in the medical wing.
What happens: Billy investigates when he witnesses a murder made to look like a suicide, and Kaz wants to get back to work in order to find his sister, who's been captured by Nazis.
Series alert: This is the "superlative" (Publishers Weekly) 15th entry in a consistently well-researched, well-plotted series.
Murder at Hotel 1911 by Audrey KeownIntroducing: Ivy Nichols, a 28-year-old hotel clerk with anxiety, who lives with the dad who raised her alone and works at the 1911-themed Tennessee hotel that was once her missing mother's family home.
What happens: An imperious hotel guest with a deadly shellfish allergy dies in the hotel dining room. When the chef, who's Ivy's good friend, is blamed and the victim's son threatens to sue the hotel, Ivy looks for the real culprit.
For fans of: fun traditional mysteries; vividly described Southern settings; characters realistically dealing with mental health issues.
Still Life by Val McDermidWhat it's about: In February 2020, DCI Karen Pirie, head of Scotland's Historic Cases Unit, investigates two cold cases and deals with skeletal remains, art forgery, secret identities, and more. Also, the killer of her true love gets out of prison, and near the novel's end, COVID-19 hits.
Series alert: Peppered with Scottish words, this entertaining 6th Karen Pirie mystery has complex characters and deft writing.
Try this next: Ann Cleeves' Vera Stanhope novels, Elly Griffiths' Ruth Galloway series, or Ian Rankin's Inspector Rebus books.
One for the Books by Jenn McKinlayStarring: Briar Creek, Connecticut library director Lindsey Norris; Sully, her fiancé and a boat captain who grew up in the small coastal town.
Wedding problems: A mishap with the guest list finds most of the town invited to the wedding, but the biggest development is that someone murders Sully's old friend, who was to perform the ceremony.
Who it's for: This 11th Library Lover's mystery is perfect for fans who've watched the romance between Lindsey and Sully grow as well as newcomers who love romantic Christmas mysteries.
Murder on Cold Street by Sherry ThomasStarring: brilliant, logical Charlotte Holmes, who pretends to have a brother, Sherlock, in order to work as a woman in Victorian London.
What happens: Just before Christmas 1886, Charlotte's friend, Scotland Yard Inspector Treadles, is charged with murder -- he's been found in a locked room with two dead men, both connected to his wife's newly inherited business, and refuses to explain what happened.
Series alert: This 5th in the Lady Sherlock series features a clever locked-room mystery, a simmering romance, and appealing characters.
Tie Die by Max TomlinsonStarring: unlicensed PI Colleen Hayes, who spent ten years in prison for killing her abusive ex and is the mother of an adult daughter in a cult.
What it's about: Though he was a British rock star as a teen, 29-year-old Steve Cook now works construction in 1978 San Francisco and is dad to a difficult 11-year-old girl.
What happens: When his daughter is kidnapped, desperate Steve turns to Colleen for help. Knowing what it's like to lose your child, Colleen investigates in this compelling, atmospheric follow-up to Vanishing in the Haight, which introduced the resilient PI.
The Night Fire by Michael ConnellyWhat happens: Retired cop Harry Bosch is given an old police file by the widow of his newly deceased mentor, who'd inexplicably and illegally taken it. LAPD detective Renée Ballard helps Bosch dig into the old case while also working the arson murder of a homeless man.
Series alert: After working together in Dark Sacred Night, Bosch and Ballard team up for the 2nd time here, in the 3rd Renée Ballard book overall and the 22nd in the popular Bosch series.
What about Mickey Haller? He makes an appearance, too! For the next in his series, look for The Law of Innocence, out this month.
Almost Midnight by Paul DoironWhat it's about: A corrections officer is killed in a Maine state prison, and a prisoner, the best friend of game warden Mike Bowditch, is injured trying to help -- but it's all related to bigger crimes outside the pen.
Series alert: Newcomers can start with this 10th Mike Bowditch novel, but to follow him from his rookie year, grab The Poacher's Son. Readers looking for the 11th and latest entry should pick up One Last Lie.
For fans of: C.J. Box, Nevada Barr, and William Kent Krueger's well-plotted mysteries featuring the great outdoors.
Nighttown by Timothy HallinanStarring: Junior Bender, a book-loving Los Angeles burglar who dabbles in detective work when his fellow thieves need help.
What happens: Breaking his rule against suspiciously lucrative jobs, Bender agrees to steal an antique doll. When he discovers that he's not the only one hired to get the doll and the competing burglar is murdered, Bender pokes around for answers.
Who it's for: If you like eccentric characters and tight plotting, pick up this "exceedingly funny" (New York Times) 7th Junior Bender mystery.
Treacherous Is the Night by Anna Lee Huber1919 England: At a séance, Madam Zozza gives wartime spy Verity Kent a warning, supposedly from a dead spy. The next morning, the medium is dead, so Verity and her estranged husband try to sort out what's going on, heading to war-torn Europe to do so.
Series alert: This is the richly detailed 2nd entry in the Verity Kent mysteries; the 4th book, A Pretty Deceit, came out in October.
For fans of: Charles Todd, Jacqueline Winspear, Ashley Weaver, and other evocative novels set in the first half of the 20th century.
Contact your librarian for more great books!