I started a lot of different detective series this last couple of years, but for most of them, I only read one book and never came back to the series. I thought it would be a good idea to make a list of all the series I have started (and a couple I want to try) and focus on continuing them this year.
In no particular order:
Galileo Series ガリレオシリーズ – Professor Manabu Yukawa 湯川学
Author: Keigo Higashino 東野圭吾
Books read so far: 5/9
I have mixed feelings towards this series. I loved most of the stories so far, meaning that the murder mystery and the investigation are always good, but I am not a fan of professor Yukawa. I liked the duo Kusanagi-Yukawa present in the first books, but the introduction of a new character (police officer Kaoru) in the 4th volume broke this dynamic. I will continue the series because I love Higashino’s style and I am always there for a good murder story, but I don’t like this series as much as I expected.
Akira Hamura Series 葉村晶シリーズ – Detective Akira Hamura 葉村晶
Author: Nanami Wakatake 若竹七海
Books read so far: 0/8
I know nothing about this series, except that it looks great, that I love the cover art, and that I want to read it. I bought the last book by accident (I didn’t know it was part of the series), and it came with an adorable booklet showcasing all the books of the series and Akira Hamura’s career history. This made me immediately want to read the whole series!
Hayato Inukai Series 犬養隼人シリーズ – Detective Hayato Inukai 犬養隼人
Author: Shichiri Nakayama 中山七里
Books read so far: 1/5
I just read one book of the series and liked it, though it is not exactly what I was looking for. It is more a large-scaled police investigation than an investigation based on deduction and skills. In other words, it is more about catching the murderer than finding who is the murderer. I still liked it, and I will certainly keep on reading it, even if it is not a priority right now.
Maison de Police Series メゾン・ド・ポリス – Detective Hiyori Makino 牧野ひより
Author: Miaki Kato 加藤実秋
Books read so far: 1/6
I found this series funny and refreshing. I really like the concept of the series: retired professionals and experts of crime are living together in a shared house. They help young detective Hiyori Makino to solve her cases. The tone is rather light and humoristic, and while I prefer more serious cases than those presented in the first book, I will continue this series for sure.
Sadato Sakata Series 佐方貞人シリーズ – Prosecutor Sadato Sakata 佐方貞人
Author: Yuko Yuzuki 柚月裕子
Books read so far: 1/4
To be honest, I don’t know why I didn’t continue this series right away, I remember loving the book I read (it was a collection of short stories). I particularly loved the main character, prosecutor Sadato Sakata, who has a calm personality and a thorough way of investigating. Also, the fact that he is a prosecutor rather than a police officer, makes the series different from the usual detective series. Continuing this series is now on my list of priorities!
Saburo Sugimura Series 杉村三郎シリーズ – Detective Saburo Sugimura 杉村三郎
Author: Miyuki Miyabe 宮部みゆき
Books read so far: 1/6
I only read the first book of the series, and at that point, Saburo Sugimura is not a detective, just a nice guy who works at his father-in-law company. While he does investigate in this first novel, he does it without any particular means or skill, which made for a rather slow paced and maybe unexcited detective story. However, I loved Saburo Sugimura and there is something in the author’s writing and the atmosphere of the book that makes me want to read the whole series!
Cold Case Seminar Series (?) 継続捜査ゼミシリーズ – Professor Kobayakawa 小早川
Author: Bin Konno 今野敏
Books read so far: 1/2
There are only two books in this series so far, so I don’t know if it will develop farther, but I hope it will. I loved the first book, I found the idea new and unique: A former police detective now professor solves cold cases with his five students. The book was mainly based on dialogues (the characters discussing the case) and was a quick and easy read. (I don’t know how to translate 継続捜査 so I went for “cold case” but obviously, this is not an official translation).
Kiyoshi Mitarai Series 御手洗潔シリーズ – Detective Kiyoshi Mitarai 御手洗潔
Author: Soji Shimada 島田荘司
Books read so far: 0/30
I don’t know much about this series, apart from the fact that it is very popular and that several books have been translated into English. I believe that if we count short stories as well, Soji Shimada has written more than 50 stories featuring detective Mitarai. I cannot believe that I still haven’t tried this series!
Ikagawa City Series 烏賊川市シリーズ – Detective Morio Ukai 鵜飼杜夫
Author: Tokuya Higashigawa 東川篤哉
Books read so far: 3/8
Detective Ukai is certainly the least reliable detective of this list, but that is what makes him so lovable. I love the characters of this series and overall enjoy the tone and atmosphere of the books. I do find that it tends to go too far in the humoristic direction, some passages being very funny and others a bit too much. But overall, I like this series and I will certainly read all the books available.
Kogoro Akechi Series 明智小五郎シリーズ – Detective Kogoro Akechi 明智小五郎
Author: Edogawa Rampo 江戸川乱歩
Books read so far: 3/12
My reading challenge for 2021 is to read one book of the series each month. I am doing well so far, though the books are getting longer and longer and reading them takes me a lot of time. I love the series, it has a very different tone and style from the contemporary series listed here. I should be able to finish the series this year 🙂
And that’s it! I hope I haven’t forgotten anything. In the next months, I will focus on continuing and maybe finishing some of the series listed above. (And maybe look for new ones as well! Any suggestions are most welcome 😄)