We’re just about at the end of May, 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 Sally Goldenbaum’s Seaside Knitters 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 May? 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 May 2021 that you want the rest of us to know about, and why did you enjoy it?
Winnie Archer (aka Melissa Bourbon & Misa Ramirez): Bread Shop Mystery Series
Laura Gale Black: Antique Bookshop Mystery Series (first entry For Whom the Book Tolls)
Anna Celeste Burke: Seaview Cottages Cozy Mystery Series (first entry A Body on Fitzgerald’s Bluff)
Eve Calder: Cookie House Mystery Series
E.J. Copperman (aka Jeffrey Cohen): An Agent to the Paws Mystery Series
Jeanne M. Dams: Dorothy Martin Mystery Series
Reagan Davis: Knitorious Cozy Mystery Series (first entry Knit One Murder Two)
Vicki Delany (aka Eva Gates): Year-Round Christmas Mystery Series
Jana DeLeon: Miss Fortune Mystery Series
Amanda Flower (aka Isabella Alan): Amish Candy Shop Mystery Series
Eva Gates (aka Vicki Delany): Lighthouse Library Mystery Series
Daryl Wood Gerber (aka Avery Aames): Cookbook Nook Mystery Series
Anna Gerard (aka Diane A.S. Stuckart and Ali Brandon): Georgia B&B Mystery Series
Sally Goldenbaum: Seaside Knitters Mystery Series AND Queen Bees Quilt Shop Mystery Series
Traci Hall: Scottish Shire Mystery Series (first entry Murder in a Scottish Shire)
Diane Kelly: House-Flipper Mystery Series
Edith Maxwell (aka Maddie Day & Tace Baker): Quaker Midwife Mystery Series
Jenn McKinlay (aka Josie Belle & Lucy Lawrence): Cupcake Bakery Mystery Series
Sonia Parin: Evie Parker Mystery Series (first entry House Party Murder Rap)
Rosie Point: Bite-Sized Bakery Cozy Mystery Series (first entry Murder by Chocolate)
David Rosenfelt: Andy Carpenter Mystery Series
Sofie Ryan (aka Sofie Kelly & Darlene Ryan for Young Adult): Second Chance Cat Mystery Series
Joanna Campbell Slan: Cara Mia Delgatto Mystery Series
Marty Wingate: First Edition Library 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.
We read By Book or By Crook by Eva Gates for the Cozy Mystery Book Club at the library where I work. I really liked it! I liked the main character very much and the lighthouse library and Charles. I also liked that it was by the ocean and I did some research to learn about the Outer Banks. I finished the second book two days ago.
I really enjoy this series and just finished the latest installment- they just keep getting better!
Jane L says
I’m currently reading “Murder in a Scottish Shire” by Traci Hall. It’s about a young woman who owns a yarn store in the seaside village of Nairn, Scotland. It starts off strong with several crises happening at one time and then neatly intertwines the various problems like a Celtic knot. I am thoroughly enjoying it and would highly recommend it.
I, too, like this Lighthouse Library series by Eva Gates (Vicki Delany). Although, some stories are better than others. I just finished “Deadly Ever After”, and thought it was one of the best books in this series.
The author gives a ‘shout out’ to Ellen Bryon on page 201. A character mentions Ellen as one of her favorite authors as she is checking out books.
Ellen, if your reading this blog this month — take note! :)(although you may already know it).
Terry Adams says
Marty Wingate’s *Murder Is a Must.” Good solid writing & characterizations. Plus mystery lovers will enjoy the references to Golden Age writers, particularly the women.
Rita McDonnell says
I binge read Anna Celeste Burke’s Seaview Cottage Cozy series.
Enjoyed it very much. I am hoping it is going to be continued.
Also binge read Sonia Parin’s Evie Parker series. It is considered a 1920’s Historical Cozy. I am finding out I like the 1920’s , didn’t think I did.
Karen N says
I’ve been working my way thru the Andy Carpenter series by David Rosenfeld. I describe Andy as a smart a$$ Perry Mason with quirky and lovable friends plus an ex-police officer wife who keeps him on track. The plots keep you guessing although there is a bit more bloodshed than your typical cozy. However, there is plenty of humor to make up for it. A big plus for dog lovers is the author has rescued thousands of dogs thru his Tara Foundation and that also plays a part in the books
Dee Peterson says
Just finished this book and looking forward to reading the next one in the series. 😊
Sally Fortney says
I read Lemon Drop Dead by Amanda Flower. Since I’m not a lemon lover, the recipes weren’t as interesting as usual. I enjoy reading about Bailey and her friends and family as well as the pig, kitten, and bunny. This novel added a cute little girl who I hope will continue in other books.
I also read Mrs. Morris and the Sorceress by Traci Wilton. This take on The Ghost and Mrs. Muir is set in Salem and very enjoyable. Stay safe and well.
A second to Sally’s recommendation………….
Amanda Flower writes soooooo many books. What a fertile mind for diverse mysteries! This Candy Shop series is particularly entertaining. The Lemon Drop Dead story is a fun (often witty) read and a continuation of varied characters. Flower ends this book with a story line yet to be determined. It piques the reader’s interest in reading the next installment.
Teresa A says
Jana DeLeon’s Miss Fortune series is wonderful! It’s like Nancy Drew combined with the Apple Dumpling Gang. Set in Louisiana, the protagonist, Fortune, is a CIA agent hiding out in Louisiana under an assumed identity, who meets two elderly ladies who happen to be former military themselves, and are always snooping around about the latest crime in their town. Hijinks, shenanigans, humor, a murder that is never graphic, a bit of a love story between the protagonist and the deputy of the town, who’s always trying to keep the troublesome threesome out of police business. The romance is clean and the stories are fun. Well paced books that have some hair raising escapades and narrow escapes. Very enjoyable!
Tanya Henderson DeLong says
I just finished this series and I’m having a terrible time finding a replacement!!!
Parker Brown-Nesbit says
I just finished Claw Enforcement by Sofie Ryan. It’s the 7th book in the Second Chance Cat series. The mystery of whodunit came as a real surprise to me.
As always, her characters are warm, funny and real: Elvis (the cat, not the singer) is his usual adorable kitty self, and the ending is very sweet. Looking forward to the next one
Paula Catherine says
The bite sized bakery mystery series
By: Rosie Point
Ruby Holmes and a baking partner Bee partnered up to have a traveling bakery food truck. The plans were to stop in charming New England town, parking their truck, staying in cozy B&Bs and baking delicious cookies, cupcakes and cakes. Ruby’s employment history was so far from this venture: she was an investigative reporter and Bee’s history is rather secretive. Despite their age differences they get along well and compliment each other.
When Ruby’s first date begins with a dead body the baking pair begin their foray into crime solving. Small towns have their own secrets.
The series is really enjoyable, and I would recommend this fun read.
Another recommended series follows:
A Knitorious Murder Mysteries by
Raegan Davis (pseudonym) is the author of a knitting based series .
Megan is a soon-to-be-ex-wife, and former full-time mom who has worked part-time at the local yarn store for the last 17 years. Her only child is in her first year of university. The series takes place in a small charming town in Canada called Harmony Lake.
Megan and her friends seem to be addicted to TV murder mysteries so when a murder occurs her TV learned skills are put to the test.
She and her husband stayed together until their daughter went away to college so she is looking forward to her future, without said husband.
The first book was free to read on Prime.
I liked the first book, characters are fun and Knitted Knockers (free prosthetics for women with mastectomies) are mentioned.
Marie L says
I read Death by Cashmere on your recommendation and liked it. Thank you.
Danna - cozy mystery list says
Marie, you’re welcome!
Jeanne Buffy says
Enjoyed Vicki Delany’s Christmas mysteries. Reading Lauren Elliott’s latest book.
B. West says
I’ve enjoyed the Cara Mia Delgatto cozies by Joanna Campbell Slan. These are a spin-off of her Kiki Lowenstein cozies which I also greatly enjoyed. First in the Series (of 7) is Tear Down and Die. Good friends, good times working in a place where everything is up-cycled or re-cycled in very clever ways. Anyone who likes crafts should enjoy this series, I would think.
Mary isadoria says
I just love a good mystery book.
Danna - cozy mystery list says
Mary, that’s definitely a recommendation I can agree with!
Barbara Grunwald says
Just discovered E. J. Copperman’s new series about a Broadway agent who represents animal actors. The first book in the series, Dog Dish of Doom, is laugh-out-loud writing and a good whodunnit!
Linda MH says
I read both books in this series. They were lots of fun. I wish the author would write a third book.
I just finished the first book in his new series (released in January, I believe). It is called Inherit the Shoes. This author’s usual subtle humor is evident throughout. Very entertaining. I’m hoping he’s working on a second book.
Barb E. says
I’m recommending The Quaker Midwife Mystery series by Edith Maxwell. I just finished A Changing Light, which is book #7. I have enjoyed the main character so much from the first book to the latest. These are set in the late 19th century and are informative as well as entertaining.
Although I had read each Seaside Knitters book as they came out (Danna’s recommendation), I was unaware of Goldenbaum’s 3 Queen Bee’s Quilt Shop books. They were written before the Seaside Knitters series and originally published under different titles. So I read them this month. It was fun to see the many similarities between the two series. I liked the characters in the Queen Bees every bit as well too.
Janice G says
I had a hard time picking my favorites as I read a lot of good books this month. For Batter or Worse is the latest in Jenn McKinlay’s cupcake series. Mel and Joe are planning their wedding at the resort where her former employee Oz, is the head pastry chef. When the very unpleasant head chef is murdered, Oz becomes the main suspect due to a public argument between the two chefs. The whole gang is determined to clear Oz so that the wedding can go ahead as planned.
Death Gone a Rye is the latest book by Winnie Archer. Ivy has a lot of detecting to do after the president of the local schoolboard is murdered and a new policeman in town suspects her boyfriend. Since the sheriff is on her honeymoon with Ivy’s brother, she is not available to keep the policeman in check as he refuses to look at any other suspects in the murder of a woman with many enemies. The solution of this mystery is a real surprise.
I also read two books in the house flipping series by Diane Kelly. Dead in the Doorway is the second book in this series. Whitney goes to the house that she and her cousin Buck just bought but is unable to open the front door. When she gets inside from the garage door, she finds the body of an elderly woman- one of the people that she met in the cul de sac where the house is located. Whitney as been befriended by the other families on the street and discovers that none of them cared for this woman even though they included her in all of their activities. This series is interesting in that the homicide detective does not discourage Whitney’s involvement in sleuthing but asks her to keep him informed of what is going on in the neighborhood. In the third book in the series Murder With a View, Whitney and Buck buy a former Motel at a tax sale and decide to convert into condominiums that will hopefully make them a lot of money since they will be in a prime area of Nashville, close to the Ryman auditorium and other attractions. When they go to start work, they find someone squatting at the motel and moving on to another room, they find the body of an up and coming country music star. Their construction site quickly becomes a shrine with fans lining the sidewalks and leaving flowers and other memorials. As Whitney investigates, she finds that there are a lot of different perceptions of the singer from sweet loving guy to egotist who has allowed fame to go to his head. There are a lot of characters to keep up with but it is a very interesting story – and a few chapters written by Whitney’s cat Sawdust.
Janice and I are usually on the same page as to our cozy likes.
The Cupcake series is often recommended on this site. Kudos to McKinlay for a VERY creative (and WEIRD!) murder method. Also, the mystery story aspect winds up about 3/4 the way through the book. The last few chapters are devoted to the personal lives of the protagonists (Mel and Angie). Weep away, folks!!
I add a ‘second’ to Janice’s recommendation for “Death Gone A-Rye”. It’s a cover to cover entertaining read.
I read the first in a new series by Laura Gail Black called For Whom the Book Tolls. I thought it was very good and have an advance copy of the second book on my Kindle.
Mary M says
I discovered your site today. What a joy! I expect to come back often.
I recently finished A Dark and Stormy Night by Jeanne M. Dams. The setting is beautiful and, as Dorothy Martin points out, fraught. Terrible weather and personal histories collide to bring an old murder to the surface.
I’m a long-time fan of Jeanne M. Dams and am re-reading several of my favorites. It’s been fun revisiting the characters. I also appreciate the glossary of English slang for US readers at the end of her book.
Danna - cozy mystery list says
Mary, welcome! Thanks for the recommendation as well!
May Recommendations – 2021
This is a little late because family was visiting over the holiday. YAY!
Tale of Two Cookies — Eve Calder
Kate McGuire is part owner of a Cookie Bakery in Coral Cay, Florida. A friend from her previous life in NYC is planning a wedding in Coral Cay. However the groom has disappeared.
WOW! This is a convoluted story with so many curves and subplots. I LOVED it. The story is entwined around many contrasting characters. Actually I made a ‘stab at’ the outcome around page 77. I was surprised at how close I came to figuring it out.
You’ll love the main characters in this series, especially Maxi who owns a floral shop in the same neighborhood as the Cookie Shop. She is quite unique and more-or-less Kate’s sidekick. Then there’s Oliver – the ‘community’ dog. A delight.
This author writes a very clever series. I doubt you’d be disappointed in any of the books.
Wining and Dining. – Daryl Gerber
Jenna Hart is the owner of the Cookbook Club and Café. She is also budding artist and is a finalist in a local art and wine festival. One of the other artist’s is murdered.
The characters are well developed — their interactions keep the reader engaged in the story. It is well plotted with twists and surprises. It flows nicely, making it a quick read. Also, Gerber is a gifted descriptive writer. One can feel the beauty and ambiance of Crystal Grove!
Peaches and Screams –Anna Gerard
Nina Fleet owns a B&B in a small touristy Georgia community. She is an ex-wife of a pro golfer. This is a strong character developed with intelligence and compassion Nina has decided to add some wedding events to her B&B. She sets up a booth at a local bridal expo where a friend is murdered at the end of the event..
Through a prior arrangement, actor Harry Wescott sometimes resides on the third floor of the B&B. The home was previously owned by his aunt and he spent much time there in his youth. Harry and Nina are friends, and work together to solve the murder because an acquaintance, who they believe is innocent, is arrested for the murder.
The intriguing plot keeps the reader guessing. I really thought the culprit was a TOTAL surprise, certainly not on my radar.
I found the beginning of the story moved along quite slowly. BUT hang in there, because it really progresses along quickly after a while.
Danna - cozy mystery list says
MJ, I hope the family visit went well!