25 Christmas Murder Mysteries That Sleigh In The Best Ways

christmas murder books

This post is all about 25 must-read Christmas murder books to help you fill your quiet time, or provide tips, tricks, and secrets for handling your family this winter season ;).

christmas murder books


This post may contain affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a commission if you purchase through my links, at no extra cost to you. Please read  https://bookedandbewitched.com/disclaimer/” full disclosure for more information

Hello, my fellow elves and Christmas magic makers! Welcome to my little cozy corner of the web, Booked and Bewitched, where we chat about all things horror, gothic, and mysteries related!

This week we are discussing all things Christmas Murder Books and Mysteries related.

For those of you out there like myself who love a good Christmas murder, cozy Christmas mystery book, Christmas suspense books, Christmas psychological thriller books or Christmas-themed murder mystery books look no further because I have plenty of options for you!

So without further ado, let’s get into these Christmas Murder Books! And if you need more horror-themed entertainment choices. Go check out-

*40 Free Horror Audiobooks

*25 Nintendo Switch Horror Games

*30 Best Horror Board Games

Christmas Murder Books

1. Best-selling Christmas murder bookchristmas murder book

Midnight Clear by Mary Kay Anderson is a best-selling Christmas murder mystery for fans of the lighter crime-solving variety. While we do dive into some dark and emotional areas, this classic is a must-read for any sleuth lovers.

by Mary Kay Andrews (Author)

When the beautiful child’s mother is found murdered, the police come looking for Brian. And now, to save her brother and her holiday, Callahan — along with her irascible mom, Edna, and a gaggle of House Mouse employees — must uncover the truth and a killer, even if it means digging around the roots of her family tree and exposing the rot underneath.

2. Christmas-themed murder mystery bookschristmas themed murder mystery books

While A Court Of Sugar And Spice by Rebecca F. Kenney may walk closer to the edge of a romantic thriller, I’m still putting it on my Christmas mystery reading list, because, duh. I can’t say I’ve seen a lot of Nutcracker retellings, so I’ll have to give this one a go.

by Rebecca F. Kenney (Author)

One night, an accident brings to life one of the strange wooden dolls in Drosselmeyer’s mansion. The Nutcracker doll is a cursed Fae prince, and he pleads for the sisters’ help. During the ensuing journey into the Fae realm, Clara encounters the handsome Sugarplum Faerie, and he promises her the chance to enact all the forbidden. fantasies she has dreamed of. Meanwhile Louisa and the Nutcracker Prince battle and bicker over everything, despite the growing attraction between them. To make matters worse, the entire Seelie kingdom is under threat of conquest by the Rat King, ruler of the Dread Court.

3. Holiday mystery booksholiday mystery books

Who doesn’t enjoy a classic holiday murder mystery? An English Murder by Cyril Hare is a must-read for all you holiday crime enthusiasts.

by Cyril Hare (Author)


The snow is thick, the phone line is down, and no one is getting in or out of Warbeck Hall. All is set for a lovely Christmas, with friends and family gathered round the fire, except as the bells chime midnight, a murder is committed. But who is responsible? The scorned young lover? The lord’s passed-over cousin? The social climbing politician’s wife? The Czech history professor? The obsequious butler? And perhaps the real question is: Can they survive long enough to find out?

4. Christmas murder mystery books for adultschristmas murder mystery books for adults

I don’t know about you but sometimes you just need a lighter holiday murder mystery. And let me tell you When Elves Attack by Tim Dorsey is that and so much more.

by Tim Dorsey (Author)


More outrageous than Santa Claus in a Speedo, When Elves Attack serves up a Yuletide feast of the “pure gonzo humor” the New York Times Book Review enthusiastically attributes to this fearlessly funny writer. Think Bad Santa and National Lampoon’s Family Vacation, blend in Dorsey’s trademark appetite for destruction, and you’ve got hilarious crime fiction black comedy that anyone would be thrilled to discover stuffed in their Christmas stocking.

5. Cozy Christmas mystery books for adultscozy christmas mystery books for adults

So this classic holiday mystery is for all my fellow Agatha Christie fans out there. Death Comes At Christmas by Gladys Mitchell is a must-read hands down.

by Gladys Mitchell (Author)


Amateur sleuth Mrs Bradley investigates a puzzling Christmas crime in this classic mystery, first published in 1936 as Dead Men’s Morris

6. Best Christmas murder bookschristmas murder books

Speaking of the Queen of Mystery, did you think I’d skip this Christmas murder novel gem? Hercule Poirot’s Christmas by Agatha Christie is a must-have for all crime lovers.

by Agatha Christie (Author)


On Christmas Eve at Gorston Hall, the Lee family’s festivities are shattered by a deafening crash of furniture and a high-pitched wailing scream. Upstairs—in a locked bedroom—the tyrannical patriarch Simeon Lee lies dead in a pool of blood, his throat slashed.

7. Holiday mystery booksholiday mystery books

So if you enjoy cozy Christmas murder, with a little sleuthing, romance, and questionable backstories. In The Winter Woods by Isabelle Adler is your next read.



by Isabelle Adler (Author)

Declan Kensington isn’t really in the mood for Christmas. His latest mystery book sales are tanking, his finances are in a dismal state, and his spirits are anything but festive. Perhaps spending the holidays alone at his family lakeside cabin in the small village of Maplewood, Vermont, will provide him with much-needed peace. Then he might finally get to work on a new book and (hopefully) jumpstart his stalling writing career. When he starts receiving anonymous letters threatening him to leave, Declan realizes his solitary writer’s retreat isn’t at all what he bargained for.

8. New Christmas mystery books 2023christmas mystery books 2023

As soon as I finish Murder on the Christmas Express book I will be moving on to this one. The Christmas Jigsaw Murders by Alexandra Benedict sounds amazing and I can’t wait to read it.

by Alexandra Benedict (Author)


1st of December, renowned puzzle setter, loner, and Christmas skeptic Carla Murphy finds a hand-delivered present on her doorstep. Unwrapping it, she finds a jigsaw box with a question mark on the lid, and, inside, six jigsaw pieces. When fitted together, the pieces show part of a crime scene – blood-spattered black and white tiles and part of an outlined body. On the back of the pieces is a ‘His death takes place on the solstice unless you can put together the pieces,’ along with a clue to the location of more pieces.

9. Best Christmas mystery books Goodreadsbest christmas mystery books goodreads

Could you imagine? Receiving an Advent calendar of Christmas murders. Well, that’s exactly what we get to live vicariously through in The Deaths of December by SJI Holliday. Sounds like a rather interesting time.

by SJI Holliday (Author)

It looks like a regular advent calendar. Until DC Becky Greene starts opening doors . . . and discovers a crime scene behind almost everyone. The police hope it’s a prank. Because if it isn’t, a murderer has just surfaced – someone who’s been killing for twenty years. But why now? And why has he sent it to this police station?

As the country relaxes into festive cheer, Greene and DS Eddie Carmine must race against time to catch the killer. Because there are four doors left, and four murders will fill them. It’s shaping up to be a deadly little Christmas.

10. Must-read seasonal murder mysterycozy christmas mystery books

If seasonal murder mystery mixed with humor is more your cup of tea, you must give this one a go. A Christmas Party by Georgette Heyer is a classic mystery that should be a winter read.

by Georgette Heyer (Author)


A colorful assortment of guests at a festive holiday house party discovers there is a killer in their midst when their universally reviled host is found dead―in a room locked from the inside.

For Inspector Hemingway of Scotland Yard, the investigation is complicated by the fact that every guest is hiding something―throwing all their testimony into question and casting suspicion far and wide. The clever and daring crime will mystify readers, yet the answer is in plain sight all along…

11. Awesome Murder on the Christmas Express bookmurder on the christmas express book

So I’ll be honest, Murder On The Christmas Express by Alexandra Benedict almost lost me in the first couple of pages. But believe me, if you can get past that this is a great Christmas murder mystery.

by Alexandra Benedict (Author)


As a killer tries to pick passengers off one by one, former Met Detective Roz Parker can’t resist one last investigation, but murder in a locked room is a formidable puzzle for even the most seasoned investigator. As accusations begin to fly, the group of travelers fractures, and unexpected alliances form. Can Roz find the culprit before anyone else is lost?

12. Best Christmas murder mystery booksbest christmas murder mystery books

If you’ve been looking for something on the shorter side, Murder on Christmas Eve is a great option. This Christmas murder mystery anthology is a wonderful grouping of short stories sure to warm your cold heart.

by Cecily Gayford (Editor), Ellis Peters (Contributor), Julian Symons (Contributor), & 8 more

13. Best Christmas cozy mystery booksbest christmas cozy mystery books

Can it get any better than murder, Christmas, and dogs? Maybe, but I’ll take it. Deck The Hounds by David Rosenfelt will not only pull on your heartstrings, it’ll give you all the Christmas crime you can handle.

by David Rosenfelt (Author)


Reluctant lawyer Andy Carpenter doesn’t usually stop to help others, but seeing a dog next to a homeless man inspires him to give the pair some money to help. It’s just Andy’s luck that things don’t end there. Soon after Andy’s encounter with them, a man and a dog are attacked in the middle of the night on the street. The dog defends its new owner, and the erstwhile attacker is bitten but escapes. But the dog is quarantined and the man, Don Carrigan, is heartbroken.

14. Christmas suspense bookschristmas suspense books

As someone who grew up with the Bill Murray version of Scrooge, it has always been one of my favorite films and stories. So when I came across The Afterlife Of Holly Chase by Cynthia Hand, I knew I’d have to read it besides who doesn’t love a good retelling of a Christmas Classic?

by Cynthia Hand (Author)

On Christmas Eve five years ago, seventeen-year-old Holly Chase was visited by three Ghosts who showed her how selfish and spoiled she’d become. They tried to convince her to mend her ways. She didn’t. And then she died.

Now she’s stuck working for the top-secret company Project Scrooge—as their latest Ghost of Christmas Past. So far, Holly’s afterlife has been miserable. But this year’s Scrooge is different. This year’s Scrooge might change everything…

15. Best Christmas mystery books for adultsbest christmas mystery books for adults

If you like your Christmas mysteries to lean more toward the crime side and less murdery, The Christmas Thief by Carol Higgins Clark is a great choice.

by Mary Higgins Clark (Author), Carol Higgins Clark (Author)


From two of America’s beloved storytellers, The Christmas Thief is filled with suspense, comic characters, and holiday cheer, and is sure to delight its readers.

16. Christmas-themed murder mystery bookschristmas themed murder mystery books

The Adventures Of Christmas Pudding by Agatha Christie sits lovingly on my bookshelf along with many others. I won’t lie and say it’s always an easy read, but it truly is worth it for this Christmas murder mystery.

by Agatha Christie (Author)

In Agatha Christie’s short story, “The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding,” Poirot is asked to attend a Christmas celebration to apprehend a jewel thief who has taken advantage of an unwary eastern prince. Full of English holiday tradition and plenty of intrigue, this holiday tale first appeared in the December 12, 1923 issue of The Sketch magazine.

17. Christmas mystery books for adultschristmas mystery books for adults

You want to talk about old school, Crime At Christmas by C.H.B. Kitchin is one of the OGs of crime writing fiction.

by C. H. B. Kitchin (Author)


A Christmas party in Hampstead is rudely interrupted by a violent death. Can the murderer be one of the relatives and intimate friends celebrating the festive season in the great house? The stockbroker sleuth Malcolm Warren investigates, this brilliantly witty mystery from this classic crime writer.

18. The Christmas Murder Game bookthe christmas murder game book

Hands down, The Christmas Murder Game is one of my favorite reads of 2023. Alexandra Benedict does an amazing job of working puzzles, riddles, and easter eggs into her works for us readers and her characters.

by Alexandra Benedict (Author)


Now, Lily must compete with her estranged cousins for the twelve days of Christmas. The snow is thick, the phone lines are down, and no one is getting in or out. Lily will have to keep her wits about her because not everyone is playing fair, and there’s no telling how many will die before the winner is declared.

19. British holiday murder mystery British Holiday Murder Mystery

My love of across-the-pond mysteries is no secret, so naturally, Murder for Christmas by Francis Duncan had to be on my Christmas murder mysteries reading recommendations.

by Francis Duncan (Author)


When midnight strikes, the partygoers discover that presents aren’t the only things nestled under the tree…there’s a dead body too. A dead body that bears a striking resemblance to Father Christmas. With the snow falling and suspicions flying, it’s up to Mordecai to sniff out the culprit―and prevent anyone else from getting murdered for Christmas.

20. Recommended Christmas mysteryrecommended christmas mystery

What could go wrong in an isolated manor full of formerly convicted murderers turned household staff? Tied Up In Tinsel is a Goodreads fan favorite for all of us Christmas crime lovers out here.

by Ngaio Marsh (Author)


It’s the Christmas season in 1972, and Agatha Troy is at a house party, enjoying the local holiday pageant and also painting the host’s portrait. The painting’s coming along fine, but the pageant goes a little pear-shaped when one of the players disappears. Could one of the eccentric guests have been involved? Or could the finger of blame come to rest on one of the manor-house servants, each of whom happens to be a recent prison parolee? Inspector Alleyn is on hand to wrap up the case.

21. Christmas mystery novellabest cozy christmas mystery books

I’ve always wanted to go to an inn for Christmas, but Murder At Mistletoe Manor by Holly Bedord has me questioning my goals. If you need a Christmas crime novella to add to your bookshelf, this is a good one.

by Holly Tierney-Bedord (Author)

When all seven rooms of the inn get booked on a Tuesday night in December, Klarinda is excited about having so much business, but a little confused as well. After all, her inn normally isn’t exactly a destination hotspot. The guests have barely settled in before strange things begin happening. Is this the most accident-prone group of travelers ever, or is someone out for revenge?

22. Christmas psychological thriller bookschristmas psychological thriller books

The cover art for The Christmas Guest by Peter Swanson pulled me in, and I had to read it. If you love a twisty Christmas psychological thriller, you need to read this one.

by Peter Swanson (Author)


Over thirty years later the events of that horrific week are revisited, along with a diary from that time. What began in a small English village in 1989 reaches its ghostly conclusion in modern-day New York, many Christmas seasons later.

23. Cozy Christmas mystery bookscozy christmas mystery books

I love a good cozy Christmas murder mystery and Christmas, Criminals and Campers by Tonya Kappes is a great read for the winter season.

by Tonya Kappes (Author)


When Nadine White is found dead in the Normal Library, Abby Fawn is Detective Hank Sharp’s number one suspect.

It’s time for Mae West to put up her camping gear for the winter months and put on her sleuthing gear to figure out who is framing Abby Fawn before Abby is the ending in Nadine White’s final chapter.

24. Christmas mystery books for adultsholiday murder mystery

Nothing like a small-town cozy murder mystery to kick off the holiday season. Mistletoe Murder by Karen MacInerney is sure to give us that and much more.

by Karen MacInerney (Author)


But less than a week before Christmas, a pall falls over the festive atmosphere when local man Randy Stone turns up with a knife in his back… and a sprig of mistletoe in his hair. Local sheriff Rooster Kocurek, never the brightest bulb on the string, is convinced it’s an open-and-shut case–murder by a jealous wife–but Lucy suspects otherwise. She soon discovers that Randy’s life was more tangled than last year’s Christmas lights… and that unless she wraps up the case fast, there might be more than one funeral this holiday season.

25. Amazing holiday psychological thriller

holiday psychological thriller

Twists, turns, shocks and surprises. The Christmas Party by Mikayla Davids is a Christmas murder mystery I can’t wait to jump into.

by Mikayla Davids (Author)


On a dark and stormy December night, my family is gathered at an isolated hotel in the English countryside. We’re reuniting for the first time since the accident that shattered our lives ten years ago.

This post was all about 25 must-read Christmas murder books to help you fill your quiet time, and maybe provide tips, tricks, and secrets for handling your family this winter season ;).

 Now, go on, go play something!

christmas murder books

This website is a participant in, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to multiple .com sites. Visit our legal page for full details. 

Related Articles

90s Kid Turned Goblin, Wife, Writer, Blogger & Mom

If you’re new here, Hi! My name is NG Terrors and you’ve wandered into my strange little goblin mode space. Here I chat about horror, gothic, generally strange, and mystery stuff I love, like, or loathe. So if that sounds like you, look around and stay for a bit. Pop an anxiety pill, yell at the kids and or animals to settle down, and relax with the rest of us neurodivergent people for a while. Oh and if you’re here just to be a negative Nancy please go away, we don’t have time for that round here.

Nightingale Terrors

Personal Favorites
N.G. Terrors Currents
LEGO Brand Retail