I’m sure that none of you will be shocked when I tell you that book-loving runs in my family. My mom’s to-be-read pile takes up three entire book cases, which is only slightly more than my various waist-high stacks on the ground. She works in a bookstore too, so she has the same release-day impulse-buy problem I do. And we mail each other books constantly with notes saying, “Read me sooner!”
(Whether or not the notes’ directions are followed or not is a different story.)
But my mom is a bit more organized than I am. She keeps a meticulous record of all the books she’s read–and she started this list in 2010. She has a full decade of blurbs on hand, so she can remind herself what books were about before reading their sequels or so that she recommend titles to people and remember if she liked the book or not. It’s an intense document and I am eternally impressed by it.
And I’m going to raid it today and bring you my Mom’s favorite Cozy Mystery recommendations!
Juliet and her mom run a bakeshop in Ashland, Oregon—-Shakespeare capitol of the Pacific Northwest. Her good friend Lance (the artistic director) is put in jail for the murder of the rotten method actor and leading man. Seems “Antony” was trying to turn the board against Lance. Turns out our leading man had a past and it caught up with him. Very cute, did enough summary of characters that you could come in at #7 and still pretty much figure out what is going on with everyone. Definitely will have to read more!!!!
Lena is Camilla’s assistant and co-writer. She is living her dream of working with her idol, a famous mystery writer. When a woman shows up and threatens to expose a family secret, the women decide to figure out what Camilla’s late husband’s secret was (as Camilla has absolutely no idea what happened 40 years ago right before she arrived in the US from England to marry James). We meet a cast of characters in the town, and it keeps you guessing til the end… Very good, fast paced, I finished it in around 5 hours!! Will definitely pick up the rest of these!!!!
Shannon is our intrepid house contractor whose neighbor is found dead. “Uncle Jesse” is her best friend’s uncle, a retired Navy Seal who loved spinning tall tales. Unfortunately one about finding a priceless necklace off a sunken Spanish ship turns out to be true and this is what he was killed over. Shannon, Jane, and two other friends try to solve the murder without getting in “Thor” look-alike Eric the police chief’s way. Mac, Shannon’s carriage-house-renting writer friend is helping too! Yes, this is a series keeper (even if I can only picture/hear Colin Ferguson from the Hallmark Mystery Movie adaptation whenever Mac is on the page ;D).
Brooklyn, a bookbinder and restorer, lives in San Francisco. One of her best friends, Max, was killed 3 years ago. When a friend asks her to restore a book that was stolen from Max’s fiancee, a string of murders and dilemmas is set off. There are two psychopathic teachers at the Art Institute who are the main suspects, but when one turns up dead–and Max turns up not dead!–the past comes back to haunt them all. It was really good!!
Theodosia Browning owns a tea shop in Charleston. The real estate mogul who is buying up property and building ugly condos is interested in rejuvenating the historic district, which no one is keen on. He ends up dead after drinking a cup of tea at a tour. We meet lots of interesting characters (Drayton—who I LOVE—-Haley, Bethany, Aunt Libby, Earl Grey the dog, Jory the lawyer, Tanner the stalker/illustrator/environmentalist, Samantha, Delaine the gossip… All are wonderful!) There are twists and turn and I did not totally see the end coming. Will definitely read more!!!
–Linda, Megan’s mom
Thanks, Mom! Love you!
You can purchase any or all of these cozy mysteries by clicking on their titles above. The other books in each respective series are also listed on the books’ pages!