Mystery Novel Suggestions.


  • Premium Member

    I wouldn't mind getting some mystery LNs or full novels. There are three I see as decent adds:

    https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20575558
    First up, Sakurako-san's Investigation. It's about a beautiful woman, Sakurako, who is an Osteologist. Her and her young friend (who she calls Shounen affectionately) stumble upon bones and subsequently become involved in investigations from one volume to the next. The anime ended right as we were about to enter an arc with the series' "Moriarty" type.

    https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7787969-subete-ga-f-ni-naru
    Second, Subete Ga no F: The Perfect Insider is, I believe, part of a series of mystery novels. Everything Becomes F: The Perfect Insider was adapted as an anime a little while back.

    https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/4387707-1-shiki
    The third, Shiki. I don't really want this one much for myself, as the fantastic anime seemed to cover the story well, but I think it'd be a good add for others that haven't seen that yet, or those curious about the source material. It feels like an old school horror flick at times, at least the show did.

    I'm not super knowledgeable about unlocalized LNs, so feel free to post about any other mystery series suggestions below or chime in on these two.

    Here's a Wishlist for Localizations overall from Goodreads (I just noticed Shinseki no Yuri / From the New World, which is another great one).
    https://www.goodreads.com/list/show/42098.USA_Release_Wishlist

    I'm looking forward to the mystery focused fantasy series Rokka no Yuusha.


  • Premium Member

    I have watched the anime for The Perfect Insider (and even the J-Drama) and the anime for Beautiful Bones -Sakurako's Investigation- and would love to see the novels translated. There's a lot of fantasy on this site, and the majority of English translated LNs are Sci-Fi or Fantasy, so would love for some mystery or shojo/josei.


  • Translators

    We have at least a couple mystery fans among the translators, so while we don't have any at the moment, I'm sure there'll be interest in mystery novels going forward. I know I'll be pushing for them where possible at least. :)


  • Premium Member

    @erictbar Yeah, Josei or Seinen type stuff could be interesting. I like Nana and Solanin. I don't know what's out there like that though.

    @Sean-McCann Alright, I'll keep my fingers crossed for some mystery series. :fingers_crossed_tone2:


  • Premium Member

    I love Japanese mysteries and have read quite a few but hadn't even thought of how cool mystery Light Novels would be! I guess Another was sort of just that (though a supernatural mystery) and it was great- so yes please!!


  • Premium Member

    @the-green-death I've only read "The Decagon House Murders" by the same writer as Another {Ayatsuji?}. I have watched Another's anime adaptation.

    Have you heard of Rokka no Yuusha: Braves of the Six Flowers? That is coming out in LN form next year, and it has an anime. It's fantasy, but I hear every volume revolves around a mystery. The anime only covered vol 1.


  • Premium Member

    @Terrence Have heard of Roma No Yuusha but haven't heard much about it, sounds good though- I'm in!

    Haven't read "Decagon House" but it's in my Amazon wishlist. Have you read any Keigo Higashino? He's great! His very popular "Devotion of Suspect X" is what ignited by deep love of Japanese fiction. I read it about five years ago and now 90% of the fiction I read is Japanese! I've read most of what's been translated, except for his first one and one that I just saw at Kinokuniya today that just came out. Most of his stuff is great.

    Also really dig Natsuo Kirino, "Out" is a dark masterpiece though probably more a dark thriller than a straight mystery. Funimori Nakamora is wonderful, with my favorite being "Last Winter, We Parted". He has a new one that I've bought but not read.

    Edgawa Rampo is cool old school spooky stories, and he first Japanese mystery writer according to some sources. I've only read "Master Key" by Masako Togawa, but it was a corker and I have two more used paperbacks by her waiting on my shelf.

    "Parade" and "Villain" by Shuichi Yoshida are both very dark psychological works, and "Strangers" by Taichi Yamada is a bit supernatural but well crafted.

    Others I've enjoyed are "Confessions" by Minato (a teacher vs. her students) and "Tattoo Murder Case" by Takagi.

    I don't think either of the Murakami's (Ryu or Haruki) quite qualify as mystery writers though I like them both (though Ryu's quality ranges greatly from book to book).

    Sorry for writing so much about none light novel stuff, I just have a big passion for this stuff and never really discuss it with anyone except my girlfriend.

    Please anyone let me know about good stuff that I didn't mention!


  • Premium Member

    Nope, haven't read too many mystery writers yet. Out is on my To Reads, and a few of those other ones I'll have to check and add. I read Ryu Murakami's In the Miso Soup for a group read (it felt like the video game story Hotline Miami at times) and Haruki's Kafka on the Shore (audio book version). I love a good plot twist, especially if the suspect isn't obvious (the tropes of the mystery genre in games / movies sometimes make it easy to guess the "who" though).

    There's some great mystery / science adventure visual novel games I've read though, like the Zero Escape Nonary Game series (9 Hours 9 Persons 9 Doors is highly recommended), Ever17 + Remember 11, Ghost Trick (murder mystery where you solve it as... a ghost), Root Double, Banshee's Last Cry (IOS), and Danganronpa (the second one is particularly fun, but it requires you play DR1).

    I'm looking forward to trying the Visual Novel game Root Letter when it's price goes down (it's a missing persons mystery about pen pals, the male pal retracing the woman's steps in high school years after their exchanges ended).

    Edit: I have easy access to Malice by Keigo Higashino through my library's Hoopla, so I'll check that out someday.


  • Premium Member

    @the-green-death Thanks for these suggestions. I love mysteries, so I'll have to check some of these out! Don't think I've read many Japanese style mysteries either, so that could be a cool and new look at the genre. I've heard about Edogawa Rampo, but haven't tried any of the stories. Might pick up one of those first.


  • Premium Member

    @lazyproblems His story "The Chair" is a great Poe-ish story. Considering the Rampo pseudonym is a Japanese take on Edger Alan Poe so it's no surprise that's an influence.

    Let me know what you think!


  • Premium Member

    @Terrence Malice is pretty great IMO, hope you get to it and enjoy it! It's definitely deliberately paced (other might call it slow), as are many Japanese novels so your mileage will vary depending on how much you enjoy that. Personally I'm a big fan.

    I haven't really gotten into visual novels. I only use an iPad and iPhone and not a computer, so there's not a lot available for me outside of Phoenix Wright.


  • Premium Member

    @the-green-death I'll have to keep that in mind, thanks for the suggestion.

    For VNs on iphone or ipad, there's always Steins;Gate. It's more expensive than most games, but worth it. You could also try Corpse Party or 999 if you want something on the horror side. If you don't mind more English types of vns, there's also Lifeline, 80 Days or the Sorcery series. Those aren't strictly VNs, but they're all good and in that sort of vein.


  • Premium Member

    @the-green-death If you get the chance, try out 999 (The Novel) and Banshee's Last Cry on Ipad / Iphone. They both might have demos (Banshee's Last Cry is like 4 bucks and it has like 50 endings; lots of them are joke endings after the true end, and it's not the longest or best mystery, but it was worth a play).

    999 is great. It's about a group of people kidnapped and forced to play a game on an old Titanic esque cruise ship. Kind of Saw-esque. Has a handful of bad ends, and then an eventual "True" ending path you can go down with door choices (it is locked from the start and you need one specific ending to access it).

    9 Hours 9 Persons 9 Doors is better on other consoles (since it has actual puzzles you get to solve, and the two screen elements are great on DS), but at least you can experience the story even on IOS. There is a double pack with both Zero Escape games coming to PC (Steam), Vita, and PS4 though, and those versions alone will be fully voice acted (the second game, VLR, has full VA in its original 3DS / Vita release). The third game is terrible unfortunately. xP

    @lazyproblems 999 and Steins;Gate are excellent (is Steins on there in English now? I got it on PS3). Corpse Party I played on PSP, and it's got some scenes that are a bit tough to take. I mean, 999 has some graphic stuff in description, but the older cast makes it a little more tolerable for me (and there's more fanservicy stuff in CP I think; 999's plot is mostly straightlaced mature mystery). Corpse Party has binaural audio, and that adds to the creepy. xP


  • Premium Member

    @Terrence I totally forgot about Banshee's Last Cry, but I absolutely recommend it! That's a fantastic remake of a Super Famicom game. Great mystery and story with branching paths. It's a steal at $4.

    999 is better as a DS game, but the iOS version does a respectable job conveying the story without the puzzles. I would recommend it to those who don't have access to a PC, vita, DS or PS4. I also prefer it to Corpse Party, but I'd agree Corpse Party is scarier for those who want it.

    Haven't played ZTD yet, but everyone I've seen (not many, I've been trying to avoid spoilers) has said it's their disappointment of the year... Which is a huge bummer.

    Steins;Gate did recently come out in English on iOS, after they discussed it for about about a year. I got it for vita, but I've heard the iOS version runs well.

    I forgot to mention it earlier, but if you don't mind something quirky, there's always Hatoful Boyfriend...


  • Premium Member

    I'll pick up Steins;Gate for sure! I almost bought 999 in the past but was disappointed to discover all the puzzles were removed. That seemed a big part of the experience. Then I thought about buying a DS or Vita, then got disctracted by other things. How much worse is it without the puzzles?


  • Premium Member

    @the-green-death The puzzles contain some plot relevant banter, though mainly just fun banter. It's not a total loss I'm guessing (never played the IOS version). The draw is still the novel parts for me. I'm really curious how it handles stuff like the Funyarinpa though (ink blot test thingie in an early puzzle room; Funyarinpa is one of the fun joke options you can pick for what you think it is).

    It's just, I think it mainly takes a bit of a hit without the second screen for the narrative, but the newer releases on PS4 / PC won't likely have two screen support either, so that's par for the course now. =(


  • Premium Member

    I may just break down and buy a DS. I've been meaning to for a while and it's the only real gaming system I have interest in.


  • Premium Member

    Good choice with Steins;Gate. It's generally regarded as one of the best VNs out there. It has a slow start, but it's worth it.

    999: The Novel does a good job at conveying the bulk of things (Funyarinpa is brought up IIRC), but it does cut or shorten a couple things, so the DS version is recognized as the better experience. It was definitely made with the hardware in mind.


  • Premium Member

    I saw this mystery novel posted about on Goodreads. Has a strong reception, and the cover has an anime styled character. I don't think it's in English yet.

    https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22432940.Girls_in_the_Dark


  • Premium Member

    Shiki is, as far as I'm concerned, the most beautifully written novel in the Japanese language. Ono Fuyumi is an absolute master.

    I've dreamed of translating it for years, and would love to get a chance to do so. Not saying it'll happen, for a lot of reasons, but I'd love to do it.



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