We’re just about at the end of February, so it’s time to discuss our favorite Cozies that we’ve read this month!
If you read a Cozy mystery this month and want to recommend it to the rest of us, be sure to post it here! For this month, I read the first entry of Dorothy St. James’s Beloved Bookroom Mystery Series. For the reasons I want to recommend it, be sure to check out the blog entry!
So, what have you been reading that you can recommend in February? Please be sure to tell us why you liked these Cozies so much. I know we’re all always on the lookout for more particularly good Cozy Mystery authors! (If you have a lot of Cozies you think are great, please post the ones you like the most at the top of the list.)
As always, please do not tell us about the Cozy Mysteries you did not like.
What really good Cozy Mystery did you read during February 2022 that you want the rest of us to know about, and why did you enjoy it?
Ellery Adams (aka J. B. Stanley, Jennifer Stanley, & 1/2 of Lucy Arlington): Charmed Pie Shoppe Mystery Series
Connie Berry: Kate Hamilton Mystery Series (first entry A Dream of Death)
Melissa Bourbon (aka Winnie Archer & Misa Ramirez): Book Magic Mystery Series
Laura Bradford (aka Elizabeth Lynn Casey): A Friend For Hire Mystery Series AND Emergency Dessert Squad Mystery Series
Kate Collins: Goddess of Green St. Mystery Mystery Series
Cleo Coyle (aka Alice Kimberly): Coffeehouse Mystery Series
Krista Davis: Paws & Claws Mystery Series
Peggy Ehrhart: Knit & Nibble Mystery Series
Alex Erickson: Bookstore Cafe Mystery Series (first entry Death by Coffee)
Monica Ferris: Needlecraft Mystery Series
Joanne Fluke: Hannah Swensen Mystery Series
Eva Gates (aka Vicki Delany): Lighthouse Library Mystery Series
Elly Griffiths: Brighton Mystery Series (first entry The Zig Zag Girl)
Sherry Harris: Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mystery Series
Anne Hillerman: Leephorn & Chee Mystery Series
Miranda James (aka Dean James, Jimmie Ruth Evans, & Honor Hartman): Cat in the Stacks Mystery Series
Libby Klein: Poppy McAllister Mystery Series
Cynthia Kuhn: Lila Maclean Academic Mystery Series
Elizabeth Logan (aka Camille Minichino, Ada Madison, Margaret Grace, & Jean Flowers): Alaskan Diner Mystery Series
Leslie Meier: Lucy Stone Mystery Series
Alexis Morgan: Abby McCree Mystery Series
Carlene O’Connor: Irish Village Mystery Series
Richard Osmon: Thursday Murder Club (first entry The Thursday Murder Club)
Deanna Raybourn: Lady Julia Grey Mystery Series
Barbara Ross: Professional Busybody Mystery Series
Sofie Ryan (aka Sofie Kelly & Darlene Ryan for Young Adult): Second Chance Mystery Series
Dorothy St. James: Beloved Bookroom Mystery Series
Diane Vallere: Samantha Kidd Mystery Series
I will list the authors and series that have been recommended, but I urge you to read the comments below so you can see the reasons other Cozy Mystery readers thought these were their best reads of the month.
♦To access more Cozy Mystery Books Recommendations, click on this link♦
P.S. I usually don’t comment on your recommendations since they speak for themselves.
Right now, I AM reading “The Secret on Rum Runner’s Lane,” by Melissa Bourbon. It is the prequel to the “Book Magic Mysteries.”
I AM also reading “Death by Vanilla Latte,” by Alex Erickson, which is the fourth book in the “Bookstore Cafe Mysteries.” The first book in that series is “Death by Coffee.”
Strangely enough, I have yet to read “Death by Vanilla Latte,” while drinking a vanilla latte. Yes, I have a warped sense of humor (smile).
I got a book on the “Nook Free Friday” promotion from B&N by Diane Vallere – Designer Dirty Laundry (Samantha Kidd Mysteries). It reminded me of Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series. I know it’s an older series, but I thoroughly enjoyed it & am now onto the 5th book.
I loved your comment!
Personally, I happen to love older series, because once I finish one book, I can go right to the next one, right away.
Second, just because a book (or a person, for that matter) is older, does not mean that it is not worthy of one’s time.
I have a Nook…how does the Nook Free Friday work?
Suzanne, I usually see it in my Facebook feed. I just clicked on it & it got put into my Library. I believe you can also access it from the Nook Store.
Thanks for recommending! I loved the Stephanie Plum so I’ll be checking this one out!
Susy S says
My reading is way off this month, but I did read and really enjoy A Plus One for Murder by Laura Bradford. This is a new series with a ‘friend for hire theme. Amusing premise and interesting characters.
I also read the latest Sofie Ryan book, Totally Pawstruck. This is the latest in this series, and as usual it does not disappoint.
There were a few others, but these really stood out this month.
Ian Jopson says
Elly Griffiths, author of the Dr Ruth Galloway mystery series, has also written a small group (so far) of Brighton (UK) murders set around a DI Edgar Stephens and his team set in the 1950s. Also getting involved is one of his wartime colleagues, and vaudeville magician Max Mephisto as the stories usually have some theatrical connection. Start with “The Zig Zag Girl” as that introduces the various characters, many of whom reappear in following books.
So nice to see another male in the group; I know I AM not the only one (smile).
I AM intrigued by the series you mentioned, especially as I love things from across the pond.
I think I just heard another one of my To Be Read stacks topple over!!
I have read The Thursday Murder Club and The Man Who Died Twice. The first and second books by Richard Osman. Both excellent.
I read the 1st one and thoroughly enjoyed it! Waiting on the 2nd from my library 🙂
Mooney Momma says
Co-authors Judilee Butler and GaGa Gabardi have two cozies out now of a three story series. The Last Hurrah and The Lasts Slide, A Phoebe Korneal Mystery Series. Current days high in the Colorado Rockies, small town, great characters and mysteries to be solved!
Each book does not disappoint and lots to laugh about and learn a bit of Colorado History on those early, early mornings when sleep evades!
My Cozy Mystery Book Club is reading “The Broken Spine”. We meet the first Thursday of every month. So far, it is very good!
Sally Fortney says
I read The Easter Bonnet Murder by Leslie Meier. I know some people don’t like how her family treats Lucy but my dad hardly ever helped with the housework, and my brother and I didn’t help as much as we should have. Actually the super supportive families and staff of many sleuths are unreal. Lucy’s friends and family always come through when it counts.
Death by the Finish Line by Alexis Morgan had some mother/daughter conflict but most got worked out in the last book. In this one, friends, family, and police worked together to find the murder.
Murder on an Irish Farm by Carlene O’Connor had a wedding with family and friends and 2 murders, an old one and a new one. I love her brothers and sisters.
Rob Jarrad says
Danna et all: For February, I’ve read a lot of Peggy Ehrhart’s Knit and Nibble series. She has a new one out called Death of a Knit Wit. I haven’t read it yet but based on her other ones in that series, I know it will be a winner!
Monica Ferris’s Betsy Devonshire’s needlework series based in Excelsior MN is great and I just started it in order of publication so I can keep the stories and characters straight! Crewel World is first. So I’m starting that series this week as I just got most of them.
I’ll let you know in March! I’ve read some out of order and her “Drowning Spool” is great!
Becky King says
Just finished JoAnn Fluke’s newest, Carmel Roll Murder. It’s always good to be back in Lake Eden. LOTS of recipes and the ending, not the murderer, but one of the characters blew me away!
Thanks, Becky. I didn’t realize Joanne had a new Hannah Swenson coming out.
Mary Beth S. says
I have three Anne Hillerman books I had not read yet, so I read two of them. These books are part of her continuation of her father’s (Tony Hillerman) Leaphorn and Chee mysteries. Bernadette Manuelito is Chee’s wife and also a Navaho policeman. Cave of Bones AND The Tale Teller are the two books I read this month in this series, and they are rich with the details of Navaho life and beliefs as well as some cases to solve. These are 22 and 23 in the series so I have two more to read. The Author has been releasing a book each year, so I look forward to many more.
I must admit, I was never drawn to Tony Hillerman, but reading your comment, now I want to do a deep dive into his books, as well as the ones written by his daughter.
Amy S says
Connie Berry’s series about Kate Hamilton. I’ve read 2 of the books in the series and I’ve really enjoyed it so far.
I also greatly enjoy all the books by Darcie Wilde set in regency England.
Question: are you referring to the Rosalind Thorne Mysteries?
If so, then great; one of my favorite people on Planet Earth loves books set in the Regency period of England, and it gives me an opportunity to give her more gifts (yes, I love her that much). Hopefully, this shall be the year that my life partner and I can meet her son, and have dinner in her home.
K Howard says
I recommend Sherry Harris , Sarah Winston Garage Sale Mystery . I could not put
It down .
February Recommendations – 2022
Big Trouble in Little Greektown (2021) — Kate Collins
Calling all Kate Collins fans, calling all Kate Collins fans……………If you enjoyed the Flower Shop series, you will love this Goddess of Greene St. series. There are several similar character traits, the setting is in the same area, and this series involves a garden center rather than a flower shop.
These characters are especially eclectic with terrific family dynamics. The mystery story line is always well written and quite involved.
BUT, BUT, but (for the Kate Collins fans), the pièce de résistance in this story is the last sentence in the last paragraph on the last page!
I then tried to find info about the next book. On Collins Facebook page, I found the title will be, “Gone But Not For Garden”, but no release date yet. SADLY, I will probably have to wait until fall before it’s out. 🙁
This is the third book in the series. To comprehend the character dynamics, it’s important to start with the first book. To understand the last sentence in the last paragraph on the last page, you’ll need to read some of the books in the Flower Shop series.
Did anyone else read this book and have the same reaction I did?
How to Book a Murder – Cynthia Kuhn
LOVED, loved this book even though its premise of a cozy is almost identical to many other cozies. You know…………..protagonist (Emma) moves to town to help with a bookstore, etc., etc., etc. In this case it’s a family bookstore that her sister (Lucy) is managing.
This author is new to me and I was pleasantly surprised with her talent in combining an engaging mystery with wit and humor aspects. To round out the main characters is an exceptional aunt (Nora) with many talents, including writing mystery stories.
The story is set in a Colorado college community. To help the struggling bookstore, Emma becomes the event planner. As Emma is conducting a mystery dinner event at the home of a high school nemesis, the host is murdered. Since Emma and her aunt are suspects, they decide to investigate.
There are several terrific story lines, keeping the reader glued to the pages. Because of its dynamics and unique/diverse characters, this book is VERY difficult to put down. The next book, “In the Event of Murder” is scheduled to be released in August 2022. I’m REALLY looking forward to it. 🙂
Jane Darrowfield and the Madwoman Next Door – Barbara Ross
The concept of this series is really humorous which drew me to it the first place. That, and of course, the talented author, Barbara Ross.
Jane Darrowfield has set up her retirement business as a ‘professional busybody’. Now how can anyone NOT like that?!! The story is set near Cambridge, MA.
Megan recently moved into a home next door to Jane. She thinks she may becoming mentally unstable and hires Jane to help her. This mystery involves several complex layers including a house security system (also, a hidden panic room!!). This may sound boring, but actually is an interesting aspect.
The characters surrounding this mystery make this story a particularly great read. Megan is missing. Several friends and family members are viable suspects. Ross’s books always flow nicely/evenly with many twists and turns. It’s an enjoyable read.
Hi MJ – I have not read “Big Trouble in Little Greektown” yet…but I have read books 1 & 2, and book 3 is currently sitting on my TBR pile. I am really looking forward to it! This series is one of my favorite cozy series! I’ve read books 1-4 of Kate Collins’ Flower Shop series, and enjoy those (the rest of that series is sitting on my TBR as well…I plan on reading a couple more in March), but I like the Goddess of Greene St. even more!!! From one of Kate Collins’ recent newsletters, I knew a fourth book was coming out, but I didn’t know she announced the title yet…thank you for the info…I’m adding it to my to-buy list! 🙂
I’m reading Mousse and Murder by Elizabeth Logan. I’m not sure why it is not called Moose & Murder though! Maybe I’ll find out in the end. It’s the first in a new-to-me series.
I read this book a couple of years ago when it first came out. The setting is a diner. My memory may be fuzzy, but I believe a ‘mousse’ was featured in the story line. I don’t recall any ‘moose’ in the story, but I could be wrong.
I recently read No Cats Allowed by Miranda James. It’s the 7th book in the Cat in the Stacks series. Charlie is a middle-aged man who works at the college library. His large Maine Coon cat goes everywhere with him and has a starring role in all the books. If you love cats and libraries, check out this series.
I love cats and books, as well as libraries, not to mention bookstores.
And I never noticed before, but every bookstore in a Cozy Mystery is an independent bookstore. Let’s hear it for them!
I AM quite enamored with that “Cat in the Stacks Mysteries,” written by Miranda James, who is actually a man named Dean James. When I read that, I was like, wow, that must happen more than I realize.
I AM presently at the third in the “Cat in the Stacks Mysteries,” “File M for Murder,” but I want to finish a few more books first, otherwise my Currently Reading stack shall indeed, topple to the floor.
Diesel the Maine Coon is so wonderful. As someone who has three cats and so many more books, I cannot help but love this particular Cozy Mystery Series.
I started the Lady Julia Grey series with the first entry Silent in the Grave. Deanna Raybourn wrote a wonderful book. I really liked the characters abut especially the plot twists. It was just very well-written and a terrific story line. Looking forward to reading the rest. Once again I am very grateful for all the fabulous book recommendations on this site!!
Just read A Death Long Overdue by Eva Gates. Really fun read, I will be reading more.
Have also been Leonard Goldberg’s “Daughter of Sherlock Holmes Mysteries”.
They are a really fun read and I enjoy the use of very proper language.
I’ve been reading several series by Blythe Baker. Her books are great and I only discovered her recently.
Of the books I read in February, these are the ones I liked enough to recommend (I’ve recommended the first three before, so I’m going to be more brief with those):
Poppy McAllister Mystery Series by Libby Klein
This month I read books 2-4 in the series. This series starts out great, and keeps getting better. I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys quirky, eccentric characters and a lot of humor in their cozies! Despite some of the outrageous situations that Poppy finds herself wrapped up in, I find her to be a very relatable character. There is a love triangle, but from what I’ve heard from others who have read further in the series, it is resolved in the next book (book 5).
Coffeehouse Mystery Series by Cleo Coyle
I read the second book in the series, “Through the Grinder”. This is a cozy series with a bit of an edge. I thought the second book was every bit as good as the first…but the ending shocked me…more than once! It was so good!
Paw & Claws Mystery Series by Krista Davis
This month, I read book 4, “Mission Impawsible”. This time around, the town of Wagtail is hosting a matchmaking event. This series is chock full of adorable animal companions, so I highly recommend this series to animal lovers. The mystery is well-crafted and it kept me intrigued.
Charmed Pie Shoppe Mystery Series by Ellery Adams
The last books I read in February were the first two books in this series, “Pies and Prejudice” (book 1), and “Peach Pies and Alibis” (book 2). I enjoy cozies with magical elements, and this series is heavy with them…so much so, that I found the actual murder mystery to be secondary to the magical aspect of the overall storyline…which didn’t bother me in the least…I quite enjoyed these two books.
Ella Mae has left New York City to return to her hometown of Havenwood, Georgia after she discovers her husband cheating on her. Once there, she discovers that the pies she bakes are charmed (as the title of the series implies). I don’t want to say much more about that, because I don’t want to give away anything. I highly recommend this series to anyone who enjoys cozies with magic/fantasy elements. This is the third series I’ve read by Ellery Adams, and I think her writing is particularly good…it has a way of wrapping me up in the story more than usual. I’m looking forward to reading the remaining books in the series.
I love the books you mentioned in your comment, Melanie.
I have stated on this blog on several occasions, more than any other kind of Cozy Mystery theme, I especially love the Witchy/Magic(k)al/Psychic themes most of all.
I never knew of the “Charmed Pie Mysteries,” by Ellery Adams, but I had heard of her “Secret, Book & Scone Society” series, which has some Magical elements to them.
Also, as someone who is not only Cuban, bus ascribes to the phrase “Coffee Is Life,” I also have “On What Grounds,” the first in the “Coffeehouse Mysteries,” by Cleo Coyle. I have yet to begin reading it, but I knew instinctively I would enjoy it.
Also, although the Ghost theme is not my number one, I DEVOURED the “Haunted Home Renovation Mysteries,” by Juliet Blackwell. I was amazed at how much I enjoyed them, and I have a feeling they spoiled me for any Ghost themed Cozy Mystery Series.
Speaking of ghosts, I also have “The Ghost and Mrs. McClure,” written by Cleo Coyle writing as Alice Kimberley. Another one I have yet to begin reading, but as soon as I read the synopsis, I knew instinctively I would enjoy reading it very much.
Brigid Ryan says
Coyle’s Haunted Bookstore series are great fun. Enjoy!
Brigid Ryan says
I have been working my way through the Daisy Dalrymple, Verity Kent and Home Repair (Sarah Graves) series over the last few months. Most of my ‘reading’ these days is audiobooks, and I have really appreciated my Audible Plus membership. I am excited now to download Jenn McKinlay’s Killer Research, the latest in the Library series, from the library.