As we begin to ease on into summer, I can't think of a better way to spend a
warm, sunny day than curled up with a cool glass of something delicious to
drink and a great book. There is a wonderful selection of cozy mysteries
available this month that would be just perfect for spending a day on a porch
Here are a few that caught my eye!
FIFTH AVENUE : A Gaslight Mystery #14
Berkley Prime Crime; $24.94
Midwife Sarah Brandt braves the dangers
of the tenements in nineteenth–century New York to help the impoverished
and, with Detective Sergeant Frank Malloy, bring the guilty that prey on them
to justice. Now, the latest novel in the EdgarŽ–nominated series finds
Sarah and Malloy investigating the murder of a Knickerbocker club member who
was made to pay his dues.
Sarah Brandt's family is one of the oldest in
New York City , and her father, Felix Decker, takes his position in society
very seriously. He still refuses to resign himself to his daughter being
involved with an Irish Catholic police detective. But when a member of his
private club — the very exclusive Knickerbocker — is murdered,
Decker forms an uneasy alliance with Detective Sergeant Frank Malloy to solve
the crime as discreetly as possible.
Malloy soon discovers that despite
his social standing, the deceased — Algernon Abernathy — was no
gentleman. In fact, he's left behind his own unofficial club of sorts,
populated by everyone who despised him. As he and Sarah sort through the
suspects, it becomes clear to her that her father is evaluating more than the
detective's investigative abilities, and that, on a personal level, there is
much more at stake for Malloy than discovering who revoked Abernathy's
membership — permanently.
FLEECE: A Seaside Knitters Mystery #6
It's summer in Sea Harbor , Massachusetts , and
while tourists flock to the beautiful cottages by the sea, trouble brews for
the Seaside Knitters. While one gets tangled up with a precocious relative,
another stands accused of casting a local resident off on a permanent vacation.
As Izzy Chambers and the Seaside Knitters prepare Izzy's yarn studio
for the tourist season, fellow knitter Birdie Favazza has her hands full with a
skeleton emerging from the family closet.
But it's Cass Halloran, the
lobsterwoman, whose life is most in shambles as summer begins. Not only is her
business suffering financial hardships, but Finnegan, an old friend and fellow
fisherman, is being pressured by the town to sell his seaside property—an
unkempt and eyesore area near Canary Cove. And it's Cass who stumbles over the
body of the old fisherman, covered with leaves and sea grass, and wearing the
yellow fleece vest she once made him. When, in a surprising turn of events,
Cass unwittingly becomes a suspect in his murder, the knitters rally to protect
their dear friend.
Soon the Seaside Knitters will discover that casting
their net for a killer is tricky business indeed. They'll have to keep their
wits about them as they piece together the clues, working to catch a killer
before one of their own winds up knitting behind bars.
FINAL SAIL: A
Dead–End Job Mystery #11
By Elaine Viets
Husband and wife PI team Helen Hawthorne and Phil Sagemont each
have their hands full, but only Helen has to carry drink trays—in her
latest dead–end job/undercover assignment as a stewardess on a private
To catch a jewel smuggler on a luxury yacht, Helen needs to pose
as the ship's new stewardess—but between serving drinks to the snobs,
scrubbing floors, and cleaning up after seasick passengers, she's starting to
miss dry land almost as much as she misses Phil.
While Helen's cruising
to the Bahamas , Phil's got his own job—trying to catch a sexy gold
digger who may have killed her elderly new husband for his fortune. Good thing
he's a self–proclaimed master of disguise, playing it cool as everything
from an air–conditioning repairman to a Rastafarian.
help to Phil in his case, but when she's on her own on the high seas, Helen
needs to watch her step as she searches out the smuggler—or she may end
up going from undercover to overboard.
KITTY: A Sunny and Shadow Mystery
Berkley Prime Crime; $7.99
Sunny Coolidge left her New York City
newspaper job to go back to Maine and take care of her ailing father. But
there's not much excitement—or interesting work—in Kittery Harbor .
So when Ada Spruance, the town's elderly cat lady, asks for help finding her
supposedly–winning lottery ticket, Sunny agrees. But when she arrives at
Ada 's, with a stray tomcat named Shadow tagging along, they discover the poor
woman dead at the bottom of her stairs. Was it an accident—or did Ada 's
death have to do with that missing lottery ticket, which turns out to be worth
six million dollars?
Town Constable Will Price suspects the worst. And
Sunny's reporter instincts soon drive her to do some investigating of her own.
Even Shadow seems to have a nose for detective work. Following the trail of the
purrloined ticket, Sunny and Shadow try to shed some light on a killer's dark
motives—before their own numbers are up...
GRIND: A Vintage Kitchen Mystery #1
Berkley Prime Crime; $7.99
A Hoosier to die for?
vintage cookware and cookbook collector Jaymie Leighton spies an original 1920s
Hoosier brand kitchen cabinet at an estate auction, it's love at first sight.
Despite the protests of her sister that the 19th–century
yellow–brick house they share in Michigan is already too cluttered with
Jaymie's "junk," she successfully outbids the other buyers and triumphantly
takes home her Hoosier.
But that night on the summer porch where
they've left the Hoosier to be cleaned up, a man is murdered, struck on the
head with the steel meat grinder that is part of the cabinet. Who is this
stranger—and what was he doing on their porch? Does his death have
anything to do with the Hoosier?
As the police struggle to determine
the man's identity, Jaymie can't help doing a little digging on her own,
accompanied by her three–legged Yorkie Poo, Hopalong. But in her bid to
uncover the truth about the hidden secrets of the Hoosier, Jaymie may be the
one who ends up going, going...gone.
KILLING: A Magical Cats Mystery #3
By Sophie Kelly
Everyone thinks their cats are special—but Owen and
Hercules have powers that go far beyond an adorable look or an irresistible
purr. Along with their owner, librarian Kathleen Paulson, they have an uncanny
instinct for solving crimes.
It's been raining cats and dogs in
Mayville Heights . The small town's been deluged, and now the local artists'
co–op is on the verge of flooding. Kathleen has been up all night helping
her friends move their creations to the safety of the upstairs studio.
The artwork survives, but when controversial mask maker Jaeger Merrill is found
drowned in the co–op basement, Kathleen questions whether the death was
accidental. After she discovers the artist was using an assumed name, she
realizes she can't actually assume anything about him. With the help of
handsome detective Marcus Gordon—and her cats' extraordinary powers of
detection—it's up to Kathleen to unmask a killer.
WOOD ENQUIRY: An Ivy Beasley Mystery #3
By Ann Purser
Berkley Prime Crime; $7.99
In a brand–new mystery from the author
of The Measby Murder Enquiry, the cantankerous golden years gumshoe Ivy Beasley
keeps her mental faculties sharp with a strict regimen of crime detection.
Apart from the unwelcome noise made by the morning cleaning crew, life
has been quiet at Springfields Home for the Elderly. Too quiet, in fact. Ivy
and her team of sleuths, Enquire Within, have resorted to finding lost cats,
and Gus is even threatening to return to his memoirs. But no sooner does he
attempt to put a winning phrase together than he receives a call from his
ex–wife, Katherine, who is in desperate needs of a place to hide.
Though Gus has a difficult time getting a straight answer from
Kath—just as it was in their many years of marriage—something is
most certainly afoot, and soon Enquire Within is back in business. This time
they have their hands full, not only with missing pets, but missing jewels, and
evidence of foul play uncomfortably close to their too quiet home.
FATAL: A Mall Cop Mystery #2
Berkley Prime Crime; $7.99
For mall cop E.J. Ferris, catching
customers who "forgot to pay" is quite a change of pace from her former life in
the military. But when a real crisis heats up her climate–controlled
domain, her old instincts come back quicker than last year's skinny jeans.
On good days, Fernglen Galleria is a tranquil haven of capitalist
splendor—but today is not one of those days. Arriving for her morning
shift, E.J. spots a sleeping homeless person outside the east entrance. But the
teenage boy turns out to be neither homeless nor asleep. He is, however, dead.
With half the security cameras sabotaged, no one can be sure what
happened. E.J. is determined to help solve the case—whether Homicide
Detective Helland likes it or not. Uncovering a deadly conspiracy right in her
own mall, E.J is about to catch a killer, or get put on lay–away for
BROWNIES AND BROOMSTICKS: A Magical Bakery Mystery #1
By Bailey Cates
Katie Lightfoot's tired of loafing around as
the assistant manager of an Ohio bakery. So when her aunt Lucy and uncle Ben
open a bakery in Savannah 's quaint downtown district and ask Katie to join
them, she enthusiastically agrees.
While working at the Honeybee
Bakery—named after Lucy's cat—Katie notices that her aunt is adding
mysterious herbs to her recipes. Turns out these herbal enhancements aren't
just tasty—Aunt Lucy is a witch and her recipes are actually spells!
When a curmudgeonly customer is murdered outside the Honeybee Bakery,
Uncle Ben becomes the prime suspect. With the help of handsome journalist Steve
Dawes, charming firefighter Declan McCarthy, and a few spells, Katie and Aunt
Lucy stir up some toil and trouble to clear Ben's name and find the real
MRS. JEFFRIES DEFENDS HER OWN: A Victorian Mystery #30
Berkley Prime Crime; $7.99
She keeps house for Inspector
Witherspoon...and keeps him on his toes. Everyone's awed by his Scotland Yard
successes—but they don't know about his secret weapon. No matter how
messy the murder or how dirty the deed, Mrs. Jeffries' polished detection
skills are up to the task...proving that behind every great man there's a
woman—and that a crimesolver's work is never done.
general office manager of Sutcliffe Manufacturing is murdered, no one is really
surprised. Ronald Dearman was anything but a dear man. The tyrannical bully had
more than enough enemies to go around. But who hated him enough to walk into
his office and put a bullet between his eyes?
For once, Inspector
Gerald Witherspoon doesn't get the case, it's given to another inspector. Then
someone from Mrs. Jeffries' past—someone she'd hoped to never see
again—shows up and begs for her help. Now Mrs. Jeffries must step into
the fray and stop a terrible miscarriage of justice...
Enjoy this great
group of books that are certain to make your cozy reading time a little bit
happier! (And don't forget, these make great Mother's Day presents too!)
A Personal Note: I'll be taking a small hiatus for the summer, but
will be back this fall with more cozy mysteries to suggest for your fall and
winter reading lists! Have a great summer, everyone, and as always, Cozy
2 comments posted.
Thanks, Sharon, for including FINAL SAIL in your Cozy Corner. I'm in good company.
(Elaine Viets 12:22pm May 20, 2012)
I like the Gaslight mysteries as there is a lot of historical research and social comment. The kitchen collector one sounds interesting. Ever noticed how many mysteries revolve around bookshops?
(Clare O'Beara 6:23am June 15, 2012)