Detective Fiction

For readers and scholars


Welcome to the OSU Libraries' research guide for detective fiction! This resource will help you learn more about the history of detective, crime, and mystery fiction and its impact on popular culture and scholarship. The tabs on the left-hand side of this page will provide links to selected books, catalog subject searches, articles, special collections, and Internet resources relating to detective fiction. The final tab links to a selection of specific resources about the detectives featured in the current exhibition in Thompson Gallery, Hot on the Trail of Iconic Detectives, on view May 24 - September 17.

Note: Non-OSU users can access materials in several ways:

Accessing e-books, online journals, and databases: Present a valid form of ID and obtain a guest access card from the Circulation desk in Thompson Library to use the electronic resources on the Libraries' computers for a limited time. 

Borrowing books and other materials: Courtesy library cards are available for sustaining members of the Ohio State Alumni Association, President's Club members and members of the Friends of the Libraries (annual membership is $50). Courtesy cards are issued at the Circulation Desk of Thompson Library.

Using special collections materials: Special collections are available for use by Ohio State University faculty and students as well as visiting scholars and the general public. See the Special Collections at OSU Libraries page on this guide for more information.

Exhibition photos

Fiction Collection

The Ohio State University Libraries' collection, though primarily focused on academic titles, does include some detective and crime fiction. A helpful subject search is:

Detective and mystery stories

The Columbus Metropolitan Library is an excellent source for the latest titles in the genre. The OSUL has partnered with the CML to create a Leisure Reading Collection on the first floor of Thompson Library, and CML cards can be obtained at the Circulation Desk. Also, public library users can order books from any branch and pick them up in Thompson Library.