Books for Mature Teens and Adults

Theme: Problem Solvers

Drawing Conclusions - (ISBN: 978-0802119797)

by Donna Leon

Commisario Guido Brunetti solves the reason for mysterious clothing found in the apartment of an elderly Venetian woman in this mystery. It explores secret help for abused women, a possible murder by being frightened to death, and details of life in Brunetti’s beloved Venice in his 20th mystery appearance. Try other mysteries by Donna Leon that feature this tireless commisario if you enjoyed this one.

I Beat the Odds - (ISBN: 978-1592406388)

by Michael Oher

Oher tells the inspirational story of how he went from being homeless to being a football great in this touching biography. He traveled from a poor, drug-ridden family to fame with the help of an adoptive family and his practice of looking for models to emulate. He used football as his goal, not only to play with the pros, but also to get out of the welfare cycle that engulfed his family. What personal qualities did he demonstrate throughout the course of this book?

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime - (ISBN: 978-1400032716)

by Mark Haddon

A young boy who suffers from Asperger’s Syndrome sets out on his own to solve the mystery of who killed his neighbor’s dog. Battling not only the paucity of clues in the case but also his own compulsive behavior, Christopher follows a Holmesian course to discover the real killer after he himself is jailed for the crime. The book is a great window into the mind of an autistic person and is the result of his therapist’s encouraging him to write about his adventures in crime solving. He does indeed find the killer, and in a sense, he finds a way to exist in a world where he can only understand numbers.

The Digital Fortress - (ISBN: 978-0312944926)

by Dan Brown

The National Security Agency faces a major dilemma when it encounters a code it cannot break. If broken, the code would smash the complete U.S. intelligence machine. The one key to breaking the code and saving humanity lies on the ring finger of a “dead” man. Or is he dead? Find out what problem solvers can do on the digital level to solve and create messes that impact both cyber space and the real world in this exciting page-turner.

The Outsourced Self - (ISBN: 978-0805088892)

by Arlie Russell Hochschild

Hochschild examines how personal parts of contemporary life are now in the hands of corporate moneymakers. From organizations that plan and give birthday parties for your children to wedding planners to advanced-pay funeral services, our lives are now losing the personal touches that make us human. Contemporary living is now at the level of any dystopian novel! What can thoughtful citizens do to combat this take-over of our personal selves? Read this thoughtful account of Rent-a-Friends and life coaches to find her suggestions of how to get back our individual lives.

About Face - (ISBN: 978-0143116592)

by Donna Leon

Artificial Intelligence for Advanced Problem Solving Techniques - (ISBN: 978-1599047058)

by Dimitris Vrakas

The Einstein Paradox: And Other Science Mysteries Solved By Sherlock Holmes - (ISBN: 978-0738200231)

by Colin Bruce

The Tapir's Morning Bath: Mysteries of the Tropical Rain Forest and the Scientists Who Are Trying to Solve Them - (ISBN: 978-0395979976)

by Elizabeth Royte

Activities for this Theme

Read about how science is used to solve mysteries.


If you have overcome some personal difficulties, check with your community to see if you might share your reasons for success with young people in your area.