Sunday, March 27, 2011
The 7 Best Cozy Mystery Series
Cozy mystery novels are often rich in humor, lack the gory and bloody police-procedural details, and have an ongoing theme in which the hero or heroine run a specialized business or have a unique hobby - such as owning their own bakery or bookstore business, or even being a wine connoisseur.
In most cases, the amateur sleuth enlists the help of a local detective or policeman to help them solve the crimes and nail the killers.
Cozy mysteries have generated quite the following in recent years - after all, not only are most cozy mysteries humorous, but as you read through the series, you'll find yourself growing quite personal with the characters and their backgrounds!
After having read hundreds and hundreds of novels throughout the years, I've made a list of my all-time favorite cozy mystery series. Nearly all the books in each of these series are guaranteed to please! Give them a try - I promise you won't regret it!
1) Agatha Raisin series by M.C. Beaton
Most of the characters in this series find Agatha annoying, which makes the series hilarious. As a reader, you can't help but laugh and admire her. There are currently 23 books in the Agatha Raisin series, starting with Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death (1992).
Here are the first four books in the Agatha Raisin series. Click on the pictures of the books below to review them in more detail on Amazon.com.
2) Hamish MacBeth series by M.C. Beaton
Each book in this series is short, fun, and immensely enjoyable - everything a cozy should be. There are currently 28 books in the Hamish MacBeth series, starting with Death of a Gossip (1985).
Here are the first four books in the Hamish MacBeth series. Click on the pictures of the books below to review them in more detail on Amazon.com.
3) Coffeehouse series by Cleo Coyle
True coffee lovers will love this series - each book is packed with amazing coffee tips and recipes for baked goods. There are currently 11 novels in the Coffeehouse series, with the first novel entitled On What Grounds (2003).
Here are the first four books in the Coffeehouse series. Click on the pictures of the books below to review them in more detail on Amazon.com.
4) Aunt Dimity series by Nancy Atherton
The Aunt Dimity series is ultimately the coziest in its genre because the plots rarely involve death. Instead, the novels relate romantic stories that are beautifully told, and are guaranteed to leave you feeling satisfied, warm, and fuzzy. There are currently 18 books in this series, beginning with Aunt Dimity's Death (1992).
Here are the first four books in the Aunt Dimity series. Click on the pictures of the books below to review them in more detail on Amazon.com.
5) Haunted Bookshop by Alice Kimberly
This series combines classic detective noir with contemporary cozy mystery elements, made all the more entertaining with Jack's 1930s lingo that Penelope is constantly needing Jack to translate for her. Currently, there are only 6 books in this series, beginning with The Ghost and Mrs. McClure (2004). (Also, Alice Kimberly and author Cleo Coyle are actually one and the same!)
Below are the first 4 books in the Haunted Bookshop series. Click on the pictures of the books below to review them in more detail on Amazon.com.
6) Molly Masters by Leslie O'Kane
Leslie O'Kane is also Leslie Caine, author of the Domestic Bliss mystery series. Although O'Kane's mysteries under the older pseudonym have been discontinued, they are still great for laughs. There are 7 books total in the series (if you can still find them) beginning with Death and Faxes (1996) and ending with Death of a PTA Goddess (2002).
Here are the first 4 books in the Molly Masters series. Click on the pictures of the books below to review them in more detail on Amazon.com.
*Honorable Mention* Den of Antiquity by Tamar Myers
This series deserves an "Honorable Mention" because the quality of the stories have significantly declined with the latter installments. The first 13 books in this series are hilarious and enjoyable, but the novels start to make less sense and become progressively worse beginning with Death of a Rug Lord (2008). Although I'll no longer read this series, it deserves to be on the list for being one of my favorites for several years. There are 16 books in the series, starting with Larceny and Old Lace (1996) and ending with The Glass is Always Greener (2011).
Below are the first 4 books in the Den of Antiquity series. Click on the pictures of the books below to review them in more detail on Amazon.com.
What are your favorite cozy mystery series? Have you read any of the books mentioned in this article, and if so, what are your thoughts? Share your ideas with us in the comments section below!
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