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Our 10 Top Thriller Reads in celebration of Sherlock Holmes Day

Our 10 Top Thriller Reads in celebration of Sherlock Holmes Day

This Saturday is Sherlock Holmes Day, a day for celebrating and maybe even dressing up like the greatest consulting detective of all time! Falling on the 22nd May it commemorates his creator’s birthday, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. 

Since his creation, Sherlock Holmes has captivated audiences of all ages, in a variety of adaptations. Whether you’ve seen the BBC series with Benedict Cumberbatch or attended an amateur theatre groups rendition of Hound of the Baskervilles, the iconic fictional character is widely loved and read. 

To celebrate we have gathered our top ten thrillers, from the Myron Bolitar bestseller collection to the man himself, Sherlock Holmes. Thrillers are a great way to get young teens into independent reading, John Grisham in particular is famously hard to put down. This is great especially if they are going into high school soon, enjoying reading outside of school is rare in this digital age but will greatly help them throughout their education. 

1. Sherlock Holmes – A Study in Scarlet by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 

Why not start at the beginning? First appearing in 1887, this short story details Watson and Holmes first ever meeting, in which Holmes astounds Watson with his incredible deducing skills. The story spans across London to Utah, as Conan Doyle unveils the tangled web his famous protagonist is about to unravel.

‘"There's the scarlet thread of murder running through the colourless skein of life, and our duty is to unravel it, and isolate it, and expose every inch of it.”

Sherlock Holmes was initially published in The Strand magazine or in a Christmas annual, leaving its audience waiting a while for the next instalment of the great detective and his devoted friend and associate Watson. Our boxset however has all the best stories, cherry picked and they’re all in one place, which means no waiting for the next adventure!

Shop the set here.

2.Theodore Boone – The Adduction by John Grisham 

Theodore Boone’s parents are lawyers, watching them work and fight for justice makes him wish to follow in their footsteps. Second in the Theodore Boone series, the book explores the abduction of Theodore’s best friend, April. 

When April goes missing from their small hometown, Theodore decides to put his skills to the test in his grand attempt to save his friend, inspired by his parents’ careers. This leads to some clashes with the authorities including his parents and the police. However, the story revolves around a good moral lesson and an interesting mystery story. 

This book is a great introduction to crime/law for young readers, it’s easy to follow and fast paced. Our collection also features three more Boone books so your young ones can follow from the start of his exciting journey. 

Shop the set here

3. Myron Bolitar – Deal Breaker by Harlan Coben

Myron used to be a lot of things: college basketball star, agent in the FBI all the while dating a gorgeous girl. But life has thrown him a few curve balls and now he is a sports agent, barely getting by. 

Until recently, when he landed the number one football prospect in the country. The book follows the dangerous titans of the sports agent industry as they try to get the up-and-coming football star, Christopher Steele’s record-setting contract at a discount, in any reasonable or unreasonable fashion. 

The book tackle’s adult themes of betrayal and violence however it is mixed with snappy dialogue and humorous moments making Coben’s writing hard to put down. 

I laugh in the face of death,’ Myron replied. ‘Well, maybe not laugh. More like a snicker. A quiet snicker.’”

Shop the set here.

4. Murder Most Unladylike by Robin Stevens

Set in a 1930s English boarding school for girls, the captivating first book in Robin Steven’s series is filled with suspense, mischief and mystery – think Agatha Christie meets Enid Blyton. 

Hazel Wong’s and Daisy Wells’ detective society doesn’t have much to do at Deepdean School for Girls; that is, until Hazel comes across the science mistress lying dead on the ground in the bathroom. Alarmed, Hazel alerts Daisy to the scene, but when they return to the scene of the crime, they are shocked to discover that the body has been removed. 

5. The Turn of the Screw by Henry James 

Written in 1898, The Turn of the Screw tells the story of a governess who, upon arrival at her new residence, finds the house haunted by two ghosts. They turn out to be Ms. Jessel, the children’s last governess and Peter Quint, an ex-servant of the children’s uncle. 

However, throughout the story the unnamed narrator hints that how she perceives events can be highly influenced by her imagination and emotions, leading the reader to try to deduce for themselves what is really happening. 

Shop the set here


6. If You Find This by Matthew Baker

Nicholas is a total misfit (a musical prodigy, but socially awkward). His granddad is an ex-con who hints about there being buried treasure somewhere—priceless family heirlooms—but he’s also senile, so who really knows if the treasure even exists. Once the adventure begins however, it’s hard to put this one down.

7. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson 

The effect of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde cannot be underestimated, Dr Bruce Banner anybody? From the Incredible Hulk to Eddie Murphy’s ‘The Nutty Professor’, characters with an alter ego in 20th century pop culture can be sourced back to Stevenson’s fictional creation. 

Based on a cabinet maker named Deacon Brodie who was given access to the keys of the rich and famous, due to his respectable status and extremely successful craftsmanship, which he then made copies of to rob them at night. 

For a classic, the text is easy to read and especially engaging. The themes are simple yet tackle some of the haunting questions of human morals. Dr. Jekyll is a kind well respected and intelligent scientist who dangerously meddles with the darker side of science as he wants to explore his ‘second nature’. His chemically induced alter ego Mr. Hyde causes havoc across the streets of London leading to a confusing investigation for all involved. 

“If he shall be Mr. Hyde, I shall be Mr. Seek!”

Shop the set here.

8. Classic Tales of Horror by Edgar Allen Poe

Not for the faint hearted. Those with a nervous disposition beware, this disturbing collection contains some of Poe’s best-known stories, including The Masque of the Red Death and the famous tale The Fall of the House of Usher. 

In the latter, Poe leads the audience through a tale of fear and imagination, showcases how both feed off each other. The narrator, Roderick Usher, is terrified of old mansions without there even being a specific threat. Due to the Usher family’s strange past many of their contemporary descendants suffer from insanity leading to the unravelling and curious plot of the short story. 

The tale is haunting; however, Poe’s beautiful writing makes the piece a must read for any young one interested in horror.

This also features in our horror story book collection!

Shop the set here.

9. Two Can Keep a Secret by Karen M. McManus 

This town is picture perfect… on the surface. But it’s hiding dark secrets, and before school even starts for Ellery, the protagonist, we get the feeling that all is not what it seems. 

Five years ago, her aunt went missing at the age she is now, seventeen. The same year the homecoming queen was murdered. As school gets ready to open, someone declares open season on homecoming and promises to make it as dangerous as it was five years ago. 

As the book unfolds it seems that everyone in Echo Ridge has something to hide. And the thing is secrets here are dangerous, and most people aren’t good at keeping them. It’s fair to say, at Echo Ridge it’s best to keep your secrets to yourself. 

10. Sherlock Holmes – His Last Bow by Arthur Conan Doyle

In this instalment of the great consulting detective Holmes is retired, but he receives one last assignment and is brought swiftly brought out of retirement, along with Watson. The story features a collection of reminiscences about Holmes greatest adventures. The tale has a sombre tone as it is the last time Conan Doyle wrote of Sherlock Holmes, but for his devoted fans the story is a treat.

Shop the set here.


When celebrating Sherlock Holmes day with your little ones why not host your own mini murder mystery party?

Leave clues and riddles dotted around the house and see who can find out who the culprit is. Be sure to share your adventures with us @books4us or use the #books4us. And remember to let us know what your favourite thriller is!

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