107 NE Monroe Peoria, Illinois 61602-1070

Book 'Em

Book 'Em Mystery Readers Discussion Group

The history of Book 'Em

Book 'Em began in January of 1995 with the reading of the will of a fictional wealthy recluse and mystery buff, Orson W. Klingelmeyer. Our fictional benefactor, who enjoyed all types of mysteries  from the classics to the thrillers, to the hometown cozies, to the psychotics and exotics, to detective and police work in many different countries and lifestyles, wanted to bring together people who enjoyed reading and discussing mysteries. Mr. Klingelmeyer left us $1.37 to start a discussion group that would be called "Book 'Em," and entrusted us to pass on this legacy.

Who We Are

We are a fun mystery reader’s book club. It is not necessary to have read the book from the monthly selection to participate in the discussion, and have fun.

We meet

  • 3rd Sunday of every month at Lakeview Branch Library at 1137 W. Lake Avenue, 61614, Peoria, (309) 497-2200.
  • Time is from 2 - 4 p.m. If there is a special program, the time could be adjusted. You are always welcome to come a little earlier or stay a little later to chat.
  • All changes - date, time, and location are determined at the end of the year with the book selection and printed on the Book ‘Em bookmark.
  • If there are any changes that occur during the year, members are notified if possible, the month before, or by mail, or email.
  • Our book discussions are led by different members each month. After the discussion, we rate how good a discussion the book generated (not how we liked the book).
  • We read a Christmas mystery for December, have treats and socialize.

Book 'Em offers you the following:

  • A chance to meet interesting people who share the love of mysteries.
  • Suggestions for ideas for future books or authors to read.
  • Information on mystery events, authors and books.
  • Occasional guest speakers: authors, professionals related to subject matter
  • Bookmarks printed just for our group.

Contact us

·         Book 'Em Mystery Readers Discussion Group
Peoria Public Library – Lakeview Branch
For information call: 309-697-2451 or 657-6450

20th Year Celebration – 2015 -  We celebrated the completed writing of our own mystery book – Murder on Whiskey Row.  The book sales were a memorial fundraiser for the Friends of the Peoria Public Library in honor of our founder, Joyce Welsch. The book may be found at several local area libraries.

2017 Reading List

January, 15Brush Back by Sara Paretsky, 2015 –

V. I. Warshawski tangles with Chicago’s political bosses while investigating an old murder and it leads her straight into the vipers’ nest of Illinois politics.

February, 19Cold Cold Heart by Tami Hoag, 2015 –

            The next book after The 9th Girl – A young TV reporter captured and tortured by a serial killer who she manages to kill. - Recovering, she returns home and gets involved in investigating the unsolved cold murder case of her childhood best friend.

March, 19Killer Smile -  by Lisa Scottoline, 2004

            An Historically enlightening reminder of the internment camp relocation of over 10,000 Italian-Americans during the outbreak of World War II. Scottoline drew on her own family history to write this fantastic mystery about a stolen invention, and murder.

April, 23 – (16th is Easter)Black Robe Killings by local author Jim Conover, 2013 –

            When a third Chicago judge, in a 3 week time period, dies of flu-like symptoms, private detective Deuce Ryker is called in by the latest judge’s widow to investigate the judge’s death. He soon finds himself caught between mob gangs, dirty cops, and murder.

May, 21Love You More by Lisa Gardner, 2011 –

            State Trooper Tessa Leoni has been severely beaten, her husband is dead, and their six year old child is missing. In this D.D. Warren series, told in first person from the Troopers story, and in third person from Warren’s investigation, they race to find the missing child, the killer, and Justice.

June, 18Cutter by local author Thomas Laird, 2001 –

            A tersely written crime novel that sets Jimmy Parisi, of Chicago Homicide, after a serial killer called ‘The Farmer’ who deals in the business of supplying fresh organs to the medical black markets.  In the criminal underbelly of Chicago, ‘The Farmer’ turns his murderous rage on Parisi who is desperately trying to catch him before The Farmer kills again.



July, 16The Perfect Witness by Iris Johansen, 2014 –

             She had the perfect life. She had the perfect cover. She was the perfect witness. A woman with the strange gift of reading people’s memories has been living in the Witness Protection Program –now they have found her. But this time she will use her gift that began with her family’s betrayal. She is ready to take on her past, even if it kills her.   

August, 20Finders Keepers by Stephen King, 2015 –

            Morris Bellamy kills author John Rothstein, hiding a collection of Rothstein’s unfinished works. Bellamy is arrested and jailed for another crime. Thirty-five years later he is released, but finds some teenager has stolen his collection. A police detective and his associates are the only ones who stand in the way of Bellamy’s revenge.

September, 17

            Death Angel by Linda Fairstein, 2013 – New York City Central Park - For one killer, it’s the perfect hunting ground. Assistant DA Alexandra Cooper follows a twisting trail of clues that takes her deep into the city’s dark history – and deeper into the mind of a killer whose terrifying work has only just begun.

October, 15The Taxidermist’s Daughter by Kate Mosse, 2014 –

A wonderfully crafted mystery/thriller in the gothic tradition. This novel, set in England, is as much about the setting and environment as the story itself. It is about a fresh murder and some disappearances which may be associated with long-hidden events. The two lead characters, Connie and Harry, lend intrigue to the story plot.

November, 19The Bricklayer by Noah Boyd, 2010 –

             FBI deputy assistant director Kate Bannon tracks down Steve Vail, a maverick FBI agent who left the bureau for life as a Chicago bricklayer. A criminal gang, with a grudge against the FBI, murders an L.A. reporter and demands money to forestall future killings. An FBI agent disappears while making a payoff, and becomes the prime suspect. Vail must find him before the gang kills again. A fast paced action thriller with a character who is allowed to operate outside the rules - fun, exciting, non-stop action.

December, 17Hercule Poirot’s Christmas by Agatha Christi, 1938 –


            Hercule Poirot has been invited to join an English family coming home for Christmas. The elderly family patriarch has written his last Will; taunting his children and their spouses with its contents. When the patriarch is murdered, Hercule Poirot uses his little gray cells to make sure everyone, except the killer, has a very Merry Christmas.