Regular price: $24.47

Free with 30-day trial
Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month
OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

There’s nothing more mysterious than a locked box. Whether it’s a literal strongbox, an empty coffin, the inner workings of a scientist’s mind, or an underground prison cell, there are those who will use any means necessary to unlock the secrets of The Mystery Box.

With this anthology, best-selling author Brad Meltzer introduces 21 original stories from today’s most prominent mystery writers. In Laura Lippman’s "Waco 1982", a young reporter stuck with a seemingly mundane assignment on lost-and-found boxes unwittingly discovers a dark crime. In Joseph Finder’s "Heirloom", a scheming neighbor frightens the new couple on the block with an unnerving tale of buried treasure. In R. L. Stine’s "High Stakes", a man on his honeymoon gets drawn into a bizarre bet involving a coffin, a bet he may pay for with his life.

From the foothills of Mount Fuji to Georgia’s Okefenokee Swamp, from a physics laboratory in wartime Leipzig to an unusual fitness club in Boca Raton, these sometimes terrifying, sometimes funny, and always suspenseful tales will keep you riveted. (The complete list of narrators includes Joe Barrett and Donald Corren.)

©2013 Mystery Writers of America, Inc. (P)2013 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"The consistently high quality of the 22 selections will lead many to hope the MWA will sponsor more volumes in this vein." (Publishers Weekly, starred review of Mystery Writers of America Presents: The Prosecution Rests)

More from the same

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 3.3 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    82
  • 4 Stars
    108
  • 3 Stars
    142
  • 2 Stars
    57
  • 1 Stars
    38

Performance

  • 3.6 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    90
  • 4 Stars
    119
  • 3 Stars
    101
  • 2 Stars
    37
  • 1 Stars
    21

Story

  • 3.3 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    73
  • 4 Stars
    87
  • 3 Stars
    121
  • 2 Stars
    60
  • 1 Stars
    31
Sort by:
  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Susan
  • Winnipeg, MB, Canada
  • 08-18-15

Interesting box stories

Good collection of stories using a box as the main interest. Authors delivered as well as narrators.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Sharon
  • United States
  • 05-10-13

Worth the Credit

Some stories were surely better than others, but I still enjoyed the book. I especially liked Karen Slaughter, Joseph Finer, S. W. Hubbard and R.L. Stein. Glad I gave it a try!

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Linda
  • PITTSBURGH, PA, United States
  • 08-16-14

Odd collection

I agree with the other reviewers that many of the stories are contrived to fit the box theme. Many are not mysteries. However, I think the theme is interesting, and the collection worth the credit. All are well written and narrated.

The 1st story is my favorite. The Most Private Detective is my next most favorite. A number of others were very interesting as well.
The last one, about the world record, is explicit and raunchy, so beware.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Phillip
  • GRANT, AL, United States
  • 05-09-14

Not much of a mystery in these stories

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

If the mysteries had any mystery behind them. The stories were okay, but maybe the focus should have been on fewer but more robust stories.

Would you ever listen to anything by Brad Meltzer (editor) again?

Not one of these collections.

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of the narrators?

The narrators were okay, the stories just lacked teeth.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Mystery Writers of America Presents The Mystery Box?

I would have cut the quantity of stories in half.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Wonderful Collection

What made the experience of listening to Mystery Writers of America Presents The Mystery Box the most enjoyable?

The stories are great. Not all of them are equal and some I liked less, but there are so many of them that are excellent and extremely enjoyable to listen to.

Have you listened to any of the narrators’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

A very well narrated group of stories. Performances were generally fun to hear.

If you could rename Mystery Writers of America Presents The Mystery Box, what would you call it?

Pandora's Gift

Any additional comments?

I still haven't finished all of these wonderful contributions, but most have been very enjoyable. I would encourage any mystery lover to acquire this wonderful collection.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

A Mixed Box

Any additional comments?

It's hard to rate a mixed bag of stories, since some of them will likely be more to one's liking than others. Such is the case with this book. <br/><br/>Some of the stories are delightfully clever with happy, triumphant endings. Some of them are humorous, almost like long jokes with unexpected punchlines. Some of them are deeply haunting and socially insightful, and some of them stick with you because they are horrible and ugly, like skunk stink. You wish you could scrub them out of your brain, but you will never be able to. Alas, these are the risks we take when we read new authors. <br/><br/>Overall, will you like this book? Parts of it. If you're a cozy mystery fan, this book is probably not for you. These mysteries are not cozy. If you're a noir-fan, you'll like this a bit more. If you're up for a fair bit of mind-twisting, then plunge right in. <br/><br/>Content warning for those who care: Various stories in this book contain extreme profanity, adult content, and troubling themes.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Worth every penny!

Would you listen to Mystery Writers of America Presents The Mystery Box again? Why?

Yes, I definitely would listen to this title again. The collection of short storie was the best well rounded collection I have ever heard.

Any additional comments?

The short story “Remmy Rothstein Toes the Line (annotated)” by Karin Slaughter was by far the most interesting, funny, crazy, impossible to describe short story ever written in my opinion. Your missing out if you pass this one up.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Stellar collection trashed by last story

I enjoyed every story until I was blindsided by the filthy language in the last story. What made it even worse was that it was written and narrated by women. I served in the artillery during the Vietnam era and never heard such a filthy mouth. What would have been 5 stars yet.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Some stories didn't really have an ending.

What disappointed you about Mystery Writers of America Presents The Mystery Box?

I couldn't finish the book, but I made it about halfway through. A couple of the stories were good or very good, but some seemed to just stop without a conclusion. I thought I had listened pretty closely to the stories but all of a sudden another story was starting and I was lost. I went backward and listened again, but it was the same sort of non-ending.<br/><br/>I don't usually listen to short stories and will hardly ever get an abridged version of a book, so maybe it's just not "my" genre. I want to have the ending fairly well explained. I'm not a dummy; I can understand implications, but I need more than these stories gave me.

What could Brad Meltzer (editor) have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Picked different stories.

What aspect of the narrators’s performance would you have changed?

I had no problem with any of the narrators.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

Out of the stories I listened to, I really enjoyed at least two, and pretty much liked another couple. But it wasn't enough to go on and listen to the rest.

Any additional comments?

No.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

where is the mystery

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

make the stories mysteries instead of terrible short stories that are more psychological than any mystery

Has Mystery Writers of America Presents The Mystery Box turned you off from other books in this genre?

no I love a good mystery when there is a plot etc.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

the reader was good

Any additional comments?

don't waste your money on this buy a true mystery book