There is something so comforting about a cozy mystery, especially during the chilly days of late fall and winter. You make a hot cup of coffee, tea, or cocoa and sit in a comfy chair—perhaps with a warm and fuzzy blanket—and you grab your cozy mystery and escape into a story that you know will be about a charming small town with interesting and sometimes quirky characters. And best of all—a murder mystery!
Sometimes shortened to “cozies,” cozy mysteries are the “gentle reads” of the mystery genre. Usually set in small villages or communities and featuring amateur or unlikely detectives, the absence of graphic violence, sexual content, and profanity gives “cozies” their wide appeal. They make for quick, lighthearted reads in contrast to unsentimental, realistic or gritty detective fiction.
Here are some newer “cozies” available to borrow from your Library’s collection; plenty more can be obtained in ebook format on Overdrive and Hoopla, by just using the search terms “cozy mysteries.”
The Book of Candlelight by Ellery Adams
The owner of a local book store finds an old diary that somehow holds a clue to several recent, suspicious deaths in her small town.
Christmas Cupcake Murder by Joanne Fluke
While Hannah speeds through a lengthy holiday checklist, drama in town grows like Santa’s waistline on Christmas Eve. Her sister Andrea wants to stave off the blues by helping out at The Cookie Jar, Michele’s love life is becoming complicated, Lisa needs Hannah’s advice, and Delores has a Christmas secret she’s not willing to share. But nothing dampens the holiday mood more than the chilling mystery surrounding the man found near death in an abandoned storefront two doors down from Hannah’s bakery.
Coached to Death by Victoria Laurie
Cat Cooper never imagined selling off her in-demand marketing firm would mean going from the pinnacle of success to a walking hot mess. Gouged from an unexpected divorce, Cat suddenly finds herself struggling through a new career as a business-savvy life coach for the hopelessly adrift in East Hampton and contending with Heather Holland—a spiteful neighbor who will do anything to bully her out of town. But her second act may very well continue behind bars when Heather’s dead body turns up next to a shattered punchbowl . . . and Cat’s pinned as the murderer.
Death at High Tide: An Island Sisters Mystery by Hannah Dennison
The delightful first installment in the “Island Sisters” series featuring two sisters who inherit an old hotel in the remote Isles of Scilly off the coast of Cornwall and find it full of intrigue, danger, and romance.
Death by Chocolate Frosted Doughnut by Sarah Graves
When a pirate festival blows into their small town, bakeshop owners Jacobia “Jake” Tiptree and her best friend Ellie White expect they’ll be busy baking up a storm, but instead they find themselves marooned in a new murder investigation after someone kills a well-known food writer and TV personality.
Death of a Wandering Wolf by Julia Buckley
Hana Keller finds her new purchase — a valuable wolf figure — causing more trouble than it is worth when she discovers a tracking device on it that leads to murder and puts her in the crosshairs of a calculating killer.
Death on the Page by Essie Lang
Thousand Islands bookstore owner Shelby Cox investigates the slaying of a true-crime writer who may have learned too much about a murder case that should have stayed shut.
Egg Drop Dead by Vivien Chien
It was supposed to be a fancy, intimate dinner party by the pool. Instead, Lana Lee’s first-ever catering event turns into full-course madness when a domestic worker is found dead.
15 Minutes of Flame by Christin Brecher
The discovery of a skeleton in the walls of her friend’s Nantucket home leads Stella to investigate the town’s intricate history and leaves her to wonder who is friend and who is foe as she tries to solve this centuries-old murder.
Gingerdead Man by Maya Corrigan
When a man playing Santa is poisoned by one of her cookies at the Dickens of a Holiday festival, Val Deniston’s reputation is on the line and she and her granddad must race against time to catch a cookie-cutter killer.
Handbook for Homicide by Lorna Barrett
Tricia Miles must swim against the tide to catch a killer when bookshop Haven’t Got A Clue’s assistant manager is accused of murder.
An Incantation of Cats (unabridged book on CD) by Clea Simon
After a man turns up dead, a fledging witch detective uses her three magical cats to determine who is growing a rare, poisonous root that appears and disappears, in the second novel of the series following A Spell of Murder.
The Last Curtain Call: A Haunted Home Renovation Mystery by Juliet Blackwell
When murder delays her plans to bring the Crockett Theatre back to life, Mel Turner discovers that the former owner of the Theatre died under mysterious circumstances, and that there just might be a connection to the ghost haunting her own attic, the case takes a new turn—one that could bring down the curtain for the last time.
Mimi Lee Gets a Clue by Jennifer J. Chow
Owner of a pet grooming business, Mimi Lee, after the local breeder she exposed for mistreating Chihuahuas is murdered, must clear her name with the help of her talking cat, Marshmallow, who is the only one who can get her out of this mess.
Murder in an Irish Cottage by Carlene O’Connor
In a remote – and superstitious – village in County Cork, Ireland, Garda Siobhán O’Sullivan must solve a murder where the prime suspects are fairies.
Playing the Devil by R.J. Lee
A sequel to Grand Slam Murders finds investigative reporter Wendy Winchester opening a new bridge club that is thrown into turmoil by the murder of a brutish local with numerous enemies.
To the Land of Long Lost Friends by Alexander McCall Smith
Mma Ramotswe’s efforts to help an old friend’s daughter are complicated by family drama, Charlie’s girlfriend’s apparent preference for Fanwell and the schemes of nemesis Violet Sephotho.
-Archana, Adult Services & Acquisitions Librarian