We’re just about at the end of November, 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 Elizabeth Daly’s Henry Gamadge 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 November? 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 November 2021 that you want the rest of us to know about, and why did you enjoy it?
Victoria Abbott (Writing duo Mary Jane Maffini & daughter Victoria Maffini): Book Collectors Mystery Series
Ellie Alexander (aka Kate Dyer-Seeley): Sloan Krause Mystery Series
Donna Andrews: Meg Langslow Mystery Series
Ginger Bolton: Deputy Donut Mystery Series
Veronica Bond: Dinner and a Murder Mystery Series (first entry Death in Castle Dark)
Rhys Bowen: Royal Spyness Mystery Series
Catherine Bruns: Italian Chef Mystery Series
Lucy Burdette (aka Roberta Isleib): Key West Food Critic Mystery Series
Elizabeth Daly: Henry Gamadge Mystery Series
Maria DiRico (aka Ellen Byron): Catering Hall Mystery Series
Peggy Ehrhart: Knit & Nibble Mystery Series
Amanda Flower (aka Isabella Alan): Amish Matchmaker Mystery Series
Jacqueline Frost (aka Julie Chase, Julie Anne Lindsey, & Bree Baker): Christmas Tree Farm Mystery Series
Kerry Greenwood: Phryne Fisher Mystery Series
Betty Hechtman: Yarn Retreat Mystery Series
Miranda James (aka Dean James, Jimmie Ruth Evans, & Honor Hartman): Cat in the Stacks Mystery Series
Karen MacInerney: Gray Whale Inn Mystery Series
Jenn McKinlay (aka Josie Belle & Lucy Lawrence): Library Lover’s Mystery Series
Roger Thorogood: The Marlow Murder Club
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.
I quite enjoyed “Death in Castle Dark” by Veronica Bond. It’s about a murder mystery troupe living and working in a castle. It was well written with some good twists. Discovered Bond is a pseudonym for Julia Buckley whom I also enjoy.
Susy S says
My reading has been way down this month (I went shopping for and bought a new sewing/quilting machine…), but I did really like:
It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Murder by Maria DiRico
Killer Research by Jenn McKinlay
Marriage Can be Mischief by Amanda Flower
and I discovered the Deputy Donut series by Ginger Bolton and have read the first three in the series with two more on my shelves and the third on my Christmas list. All of these books have strong, likeable, intelligent women as the lead character with a nice group of supporting characters.
Roger Thorogood (originator of Death In Paradise) has begun a new series of mystery books. First to come is ‘The Marlow Murder Club’. 73 year old Judith Potts lives by the river and one evening, while skinny dipping, witnesses a murder. The police don’t find anything so it’s up to her and some friends to solve the mystery.
Chris O’Donoghue has the latest of his Inspector Sonny Russell novels out. Published by Boghopper Books (I think he self publishes) these are 1950s police procedurals, and often involve plotlines from previous books.
Richard Osman has the second of his Thursday Murder Club books out. The Man Who Died Twice.
Fortney, Sally says
I read God Rest Ye, Royal Gentlemen by Rhys Bowen. I always love Georgie, Darcy, and the regular characters but really appreciated the portraits of the royal family in this one. I also liked hearing about English Christmas customs.
Also read A Scone of Contention by Lucy Burdette. This book some of the main characters go to Scotland but we also hear from people back in Key West.
Ginger Martin says
I love the Yarn Retreat Mysteries by Betty Hechtman. Great storylines.
I have been enjoying the Gray Whale Inn Mystery series by Karen MacInerney. Love the Maine Locations, the characters on Cranberry Island and the puzzles she presents. I am on #6: Death Runs Adrift. The first book in the series is Murder on the Rocks.
::sigh:: I am sad. I reserve the next book in a series I like from the library as I’m reading the current book. Just discovered there are no more in the Haunted Souvenir Shop series. 🙁
November Recommendations – 2021
Slashing Through the Snow – Jacqueline Frost
Ahhhhh…………want the ambiance of a Christmas read? Then this is the book for you! After all, it’s set in Mistletoe. Maine!! ‘Holly’ (of course!) helps to manage the family B&B. The victim is a critic for a New England magazine. The accused is ‘Cookie’, an elderly friend. That part of the story is pretty implausible, given her age, lack of motive, and inability to lift anything heavy.
However, it’s a fun read, written with much wit. Characters are so enjoyable. There are several festivities to set the holiday mood. It’s a good/enjoyable mystery with an ending that is surprising.
It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Murder — Maria DiRico (Ellen Byron)
ANOTHER holiday read! LOVE this series. The diverse characters make this a must read series. Mia Carina is managing an events and catering hall in Queens with her father. Her family has ties to the mafia, but Mia tries to keep everyone on the ‘straight and narrow’. There is a lot of wit, plus humorous scenes, as there is a neighborhood holiday lighting contest. Mia’s mother shows up after a five year absence, creating an acrimonious situation.
This is a convoluted and complicated mystery — a norm for this author. She is a GREAT storyteller with numerous twists and plotlines. The victim is impersonating someone he’s not. This creates much distress in a mob family. There are soooo many layers to unfold.
Another holiday mood setter with a story that doesn’t disappoint.
The Cure for What Ales You — Ellie Alexander
This series is set in the Northwest. The community has created a Bavarian ambiance, featuring two breweries. Sloan Kraus has grown up in the foster system and knows little of her past. This book is the fifth in the series with a thread that has run through all the stories. It’s finally resolved in this story. When this author (Dyer-Seeley) wrote a continuing thread in another series, it ended when it was resolved. I don’t know if that will happen this time or not. But I wouldn’t be surprised if it was. I hope not because I can see a lot more stories with these characters.
A housekeeper in a nearby hotel is murdered. It appears there may be ties to Sloan’s past. Her 16 yr. old son, Alex, is also put in danger. Although that part of the story goes off-kilter.
Sloan is a smart, but conflicted character with so much depth. She works in a microbrewery. It’s important to read this series from the beginning.
Killer Research — Jenn McKinlay
A mystery by McKinlay is ALWAYS good! ‘NUFF SAID! :). This is the 12th book in the Library Lovers Mysteries.
The Enemy You Gnocci — Catherine Bruns
Tis the season, folks! Again – a holiday setting. The community is celebrating a ‘Festival of Lights’. Tessa Esposito is a chef and owns an Italian restaurant. She is preparing for a Breakfast with Santa event on Christmas Eve. A much disliked new owner of a nearby coffee house is murdered. In his short time in town he’s made several enemies. A friend of Tessa’s is considered the prime suspect.
Tessa’s cousin (Gabby) is ready and waiting to help Tessa to find the real culprit. Gabby’s brother, Gino, is a police detective. The story creates a family vibe with these close relationships.
Bruns has developed some unique vibrant characters, making the story an exciting read. It’s sprinkled with a lot of humor and some romance. The mystery plot and subplots flow so nicely with several twists. Again, an ending that most likely will surprise you. I must add — it’s a page turner and difficult to put down (so beware of reading it late at night!). Enjoy!!
HAPPY HOLIDAYS, everyone!! 🙂 🙂
Susy S says
I am addicted to all the series you mentioned except for the book by Catherine Burns. I have not yet read any of her books, and if she is like most of my authors, she has a large number for me to HAVE to buy! You and I seem to have very similar taste, and you have never steered me wrong.
Thanks for your recommendations.
I REALLY like this series by Catherine Brun – Italian Chef Mystery
I tried the first book in another of her series and it didn’t appeal to me. I can’t remember why right now. Usually it’s the characters that click or don’t.
I know we all have different tastes, so others may be fascinated with a series that didn’t work for me.
Generally speaking, most of the time if I like one series by an author, I like the other series written by them. Case in point, – Jenn McKinlay and Ellen Byron.
Susy S says
You are so right about those two.
I have also found that authors who have written series I love, also write series where I don’t like the characters, so I don’t like the series. One author (DK) who used to be a favorite, currently has two series going that I just cannot get past the first few chapters of the first book.
Have read so many but Finlay Donovan is Killing it was one of the best. By new at least to me, author Ellie Cosimano. Highly recommend it.
Donna Rowe says
I’ve been catching up on Miranda James Cat in the Stacks series via audiobook. The latest one I’ve listened to was book 9, “Claws for Concern.”
I wish I had started this series with the audiobooks rather than simply reading the first six, good as they were. Erin Bennett really brings the characters to life! It’s like hanging out with old friends. I often found myself making comments about what a character said–mostly Charlie, the main one–as if he was there in person and I was speaking directly to him. Love him and love his Maine Coon, Diesel!
Rob J says
Dear Danna et all:
My reading this month has centered on Peggy Ehrhart’s Knit and Nibble series and I’ve read them all except of course for the 8th work
which is out in March of next year. She has a delightful dynamic duo of best friends that solve the town’s murder mysteries as the chief of police is barely competent. The supporting cast of characters are equally delightful.
Also Anne Perry (may or may not be considered a cozy) writes several series but my favs are Charlotte and Thomas Pitt and their
coterie of friends and family that work with them. Anne also writes mysteries for Christmas that feature her characters in her other
books that work to solve the Christmas offerings. An excellent side
bar of works that feature your favorite Anne Perry characters.
I enjoy Miranda James’ Cat in the Stacks mysteries as well. As you
can see, I’m a voracious reader and I love my authors!
I only have one recommendation for November… Victoria Abbott’s Book Collector Mystery Series
I read the five books in this series. Each one features a different mystery author (Agatha Christie, Dorothy Sayers, etc.) in some way. Jordan Bingham gets a job (including room and board) acquiring hard-to-find editions of books for her curmudgeonly employer, Vera Van Alst. Each book in the series contains a plot involving the acquisition of rare editions from the author named in the title. The mysteries of each book in the series are also modeled after that author’s style.
The storylines kept me intrigued. I thought the mysteries were well-crafted and accented by an interesting cast of characters. Jordan was raised by her uncles, who aren’t exactly on the right side of the law, but are willing to help their niece as needed. Jordan uses tips and tricks from her uncles (as well as a set of lock picks given to her for her sixteenth birthday), to assist in her sleuthing. There is a fair amount of humor throughout as well. I found books 2, 3 & 4 particularly difficult to put down…I couldn’t wait to find out what would happen next, and to see how (if) everything would be resolved…the journey getting there was entertaining.
I love that series, too.
Love the latest Deputy Donut book. Hope the series continues.
Susy S says
I just discovered this series this past month and have read the first four with the next two awaiting my attention.
Michael C says
This month I am happy to report having read almost the entire series of Kerry Greenwood’s Phryne Fisher series. Kerry is from Australia, and her mysteries are set in the 1920’s in the Melbourne area. Phryne is a character and a force of nature. I had thought I had read most every plot there is in a mystery, but how wrong I was! Kerry is quite innovative writer. I lost a lot of sleep and didn’t get a lot done because I couldn’t put the books down!
Lynette LeDoux says
Reading through the Bruno Courreges series by Martin Walker. The setting, references to cooking and gardening, the life in the rural community keep it all very interesting.