The Atlantic

The Books Briefing: A Study in Sleuthing

Mysteries and their histories: Your weekly guide to the best in books
Source: Kirsty Wigglesworth / AP

Many thrillers trace a strange or catastrophic event back to its surprising source. But what catalysts lead to those stories being written in the first place? Walter Mosley’s mystery-writing career was set off by a single simile from an older giant of the genre. Celeste Ng’s haunting novels draw unexpected lessons from the surreal, unexplained illustrations of . Charles Willeford’s

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