International Mystery Book Group

Interested in joining? Contact Katharyn Jones by email or call (269) 585-8711

The International Mystery Book Group is a drop-in book discussion group that enjoys traveling the world vicariously through mystery novels. Our informal discussions last one hour.

We meet at the library at 7 PM on the second Thursday of every month year-round. See below for current season titles, and check out our events calendar for upcoming reads! The selected read will be available each month at the Adult Information Desk.


September 13th

My Lady Judge by Cora Harrison,

Set in Medieval Ireland 

On the first eve of May, 1509, hundreds of people from the Burren climbed the gouged-out limestone terraces of Mullaghmore Mountain to celebrate the great May Day festival. But one man did not come back down the steeply spiraling path. His body lay exposed to the ravens and wolves on the bare, lonely mountain for two nights… and no one spoke of him, or told what they had seen. And when Mara, a woman appointed by King Turlough Don O’Brien to be judge and lawgiver to the stony kingdom, comes to investigate, she is met with a wall of silence.

October 11th

The Shape of the Water by Andrea Camilleri

Set in Sicily, Italy

The goats of Vigŕta once grazed on the trash-strewn site still known as the Pasture. Now local enterprise of a different sort flourishes: drug dealers and prostitutes of every flavor. But their discreet trade is upset when two employees of the Splendour Refuse Collection Company discover the body of engineer Silvio Luparello, one of the local movers and shakers, apparently deceased in flagrante at the Pasture. The coroner’s verdict is death from natural causes – refreshingly unusual for Sicily. But Inspector Salvo Montalbano, as honest as he is streetwise and as scathing to fools and villains as he is compassionate to their victims, is not ready to close the case – even though he’s being pressured by Vigŕta’s police chief, judge, and bishop.

November 8th

The Oxford Murders by Guillermo Martínez

Set in Oxford, England

The Oxford Murders has been hailed as “a remarkable feat” (Time Out London) and its author as “one of Argentina’s most distinctive voices” (The Times Literary Supplement). It begins on a summer day in Oxford, when a young Argentine graduate student finds his landlady-an elderly woman who helped crack the Enigma Code during World War II -murdered in cold blood. Meanwhile, a renowned Oxford logician receives an anonymous note bearing a circle and the words “the first of a series.” As the murders begin to pile up and more symbols are revealed, it is up to this unlikely pair to decipher the pattern before the killer strikes again.

December 13th

To celebrate the holiday season, Portage District Library’s sleuths will be shelving our magnifying glasses and enjoying an International Mystery Movie! Everyone is welcome to join us for fun, film, and food. 

Optional: Bring a caper you already have memorized if you would like to participate in the Annual Book Exchange. If you wish to show off your baking, feel free to bring some of those extra cookies you have around the house!

January 10th

In Cold Pursuit by Sarah Andrews

Set in Antarctica 

Valena Walker is a dedicated master’s student in geology headed to Antarctica to study glaciology with the venerable Dr. Emmett Vanderzee. When an unexpected death interrupts the doctor’s research, Valena quickly realizes that in order to avoid being shipped north immediately and having her grant canceled, she must embrace the role of detective and work to clear his name—-and save herself in the process.

February 7th

The Dry by Jane Harper

Set in Australia

After getting a note demanding his presence, Federal Agent Aaron Falk arrives in his hometown for the first time in decades to attend the funeral of his best friend, Luke. Twenty years ago when Falk was accused of murder, Luke was his alibi. Falk and his father fled under a cloud of suspicion, saved from prosecution only because of Luke’s steadfast claim that the boys had been together at the time of the crime. But now more than one person knows they didn’t tell the truth back then, and Luke is dead. Amid the worst drought in a century, Falk and the local detective question what really happened to Luke. 

March 14th

Buried in a Bog by Sheila Connolly

Set in Modern Ireland

Honoring the wish of her late grandmother, Maura Donovan visits the small Irish village where her Gran was born—though she never expected to get bogged down in a murder mystery. Nor had she planned to take a job in one of the local pubs, but she finds herself excited to get to know the people who knew her Gran. In the pub, she’s swamped with drink orders as everyone in town gathers to talk about the recent discovery of a nearly one-hundred-year-old body in a nearby bog. When Maura realizes she may know something about the dead man—and that the body’s connected to another, more recent, death—she fears she’s about to become mired in a homicide investigation. After she discovers the death is connected to another from almost a century earlier, Maura has a sinking feeling she may really be getting in over her head… 

April 11th

The Thieves of Heaven by Richard Doetsch

In a small, heavily fortified room just north of the Sistine Chapel, a master thief is about to strike. All he needs is an instant–to steal the most important treasure in the Vatican museum: two antique keys–one gold, one silver–that protect the secret of salvation….
But a surprise awaits Michael St. Pierre deep inside the Vatican, an ancient secret so explosive, it sends him running for his life—from the streets of Rome to a small stone church in Israel—with two stolen keys and a terrible realization: the consequences of his desperate, brazen act are far greater than he could ever have imagined. 

May 9th

For month of May we will celebrate surviving another Michigan winter with Readers’ Choice Night! It could be a Solve the Puzzle, Solve the Mystery Party. It could be an extra-special mystery read. It could be a movie viewing. Most importantly, you—the reader—gets to decide! 

Readers’ Choice Night will be selected at our March 2019 discussion. Final plans will be announced at our April 2019 discussion. Everyone is welcome!

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