Closed Circle Mysteries

Laura picked the topic this week, so we’re digging into one of her favourite tropes: the locked room mystery. Of course, the first thing we learned was that Laura had been using that term wrong: a locked room mystery technically only applies to mysteries featuring literal locked rooms. She was thinking of symbolic locked rooms like characters stuck on an island or another similar setting. Basically, if there is a low number of characters and they are can’t get away, Laura is intrigued! This list is for fans of Ruth Ware, Lucy Foley, Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None, and anyone who likes a good suspenseful read. You’ll find typical mysteries and more unusual ones, where authors mixed in other genres like science fiction. Some are most strict closed circles than others, but all follow the general conventions of this genre. And finally, there are two titles that are not murder mysteries like the rest but do have the same contained setting and small cast of characters (and the same tension!).

Listen to the episode on your favourite podcast platform by searching for Read This Next or watch on our YouTube channel. Place your TPBL holds for print books through our online catalogue, or search for eBooks through cloudLibrary. For full details about these titles and all the books we’ve mentioned on the show, go to

We had lots of digressions this episode! Nicole mentions The Prestige, Laura shouts out the movie Moon, and below is Laura’s super nerdy tracking mystery facets chart.

Book descriptions and covers via NoveList & GoodReads. Got a comment or theme request? Email us at

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