Cozy Mysteries for Fall

by Ruth G.

Ah, Fall!  Time for hot spiced cider, gingerbread cookies, jigsaw puzzles, and cozy mysteries. It’s the time of year that we talk about curling up with a good book. Which is kinda funny because I was just listening to the (audie-nominated) “Seriously… I’m Kidding” last night, (while I was doing a jigsaw puzzle) and Ellen DeGeneres commented on the whole “curling up with a book” thing:

It’s an awkward position to be curled up… We don’t curl up to do other things.  We never say we’re gonna curl up and surf the Internet or curl up and knit. In fact, if you’re curling up while you’re doing anything besides reading you might want to look into Boniva.

So, just to clarify: the curling up is totally optional.  How about try “cozying up” to mysteries with an Autumnal flavor:


A Batter of Life and Deathbatter, by Ellie Alexander

It’s autumn in Ashland, Oregon-’tis the season for a spiced hot apple cider with a serving (or two) of Torte’s famous peach cobbler. It’s also the perfect time for Jules Capshaw to promote her family’s beloved bake shop by competing in The Pastry Channel’s reality show, Take the Cake . The prize is $25,000. But as Jules quickly learns, some people would kill for that kind of dough. Literally.



litterThe Litter of the Law, by Rita Mae Brown
During an autumn scenic drive in rural Crozet, Virginia, Mary Minor “Harry” Haristeen and husband Fair discover the body of a murdered accountant lying in a cornfield. Rooting out the guilty murderer in the treacherous center of a lucrative conspiracy requires Harry’s farmer’s wisdom–along with the quick wits and extraordinary senses of Sneaky Pie, Pewter, and Tucker.


fudgeFive-Alarm Fudgeby Christine DeSmet.
It’s autumn in Fishers’ Harbor, Wisconsin, and fudge shop owner Ava Oosterling is busy preparing for the harvest festival and a visit from some royal relatives who live in Belgium. According to Ava’s grandpa, a famous divinity fudge recipe from the 1860s is hidden somewhere in a local historical church–a treat fit for a prince.<br> <br> But when a fire in the church reveals the body of a murdered man, it looks like someone is willing to go to any length to possess the valuable secret to the divinity fudge…


knitA Finely Knit Murder by Sally Goldenbaum.
Seaside Knitter Birdie Favazza is thrilled that her granddaughter Gabby will be visiting for the fall and attending the Sea Harbor Community Day School…but not everyone is happy with the direction the school is taking. Outspoken board member Blythe Westerland has sparked tempers with her determination to unravel the current administration. Then, on the evening of an elegant school event, Blythe’s body is found near the school boathouse…


Sealed with a Killsealed by Lucy Lawrence.
Autumn in New England brings out the tourists. When Brenna Miller gets stuck as the tour guide for a group of leaf peepers, she tries to make the best of it. But it’s hard to stay enthusiastic after the trail leads them straight to a dead body.




Wicked Autumnwicked, by G. M. Malliet

What could be more dangerous than cozy village life in the English countryside? </p> <p>Max Tudor has adapted well to his post as vicar of St. Edwold’s in the idyllic village of Nether Monkslip. The quiet village seems the perfect home for Max, who has fled a harrowing past as an MI5 agent. Now he has found a measure of peace among urban escapees and yoga practitioners, artists and crafters and New Agers. But this new-found serenity is quickly shattered when the highly vocal and unpopular president of the Women’s Institute turns up dead at the Harvest Fayre.


dirt‘Til Dirt Do Us Part, by Edith Maxwell
Autumn has descended on Westbury, Massachusetts, but the mood at the Farm-to-Table Dinner in Cam’s newly built barn is unseasonably chilly. Local entrepreneur Irene Burr made a lot of enemies with her plan to buy Westbury’s Old Town Hall and replace it with a textile museum–enough enemies to fill out a list of suspects when the wealthy widow turns up dead in a neighboring farm.


Cantankerous spinster Ivy Beasley has quickly learned that spending her golden years in the quaint village of Barrington won’t be as quiet as she thought. Ivy hasn’t been in assisted living at Springfields for long, but she’s already found new friends, formed a detective agency, and solved a murder. And as autumn falls, Ivy and her team are asked to investigate a mysterious death in the village of Measby-in between card games, of course.


Autumn’s crisp bite is in the air, but Miss Julia soon discovers that, alas, leaves aren’t the only things falling. James, Hazel Marie’s housekeeper, has taken a nasty tumble down some stairs. How can Hazel Marie feed and take care of him—not to mention a husband, son, and twin baby girls—when she barely knows how to boil water? Miss Julia promptly organizes the ladies of Abbotsville to give Hazel Marie cooking lessons. But before she can relax, Hazel Marie’s shady preacher-uncle turns up—just as Miss Julia learns that James has roped young Lloyd into an Internet scam…

maizeA Killer Maize, by Paige Shelton
 The last person Becca expects to run into at the Swayton County Fall Festival is her ex-husband, Scott Triplett, who’s operating a shooting gallery. Honesty was not always Scott’s policy, and their unexpected reunion is further complicated when the festival becomes a crime scene. On Becca’s second day there, Ferris wheel operator Virgil Morrison is found hanging from his rickety ride, dead from a gunshot.


Were those too warm and fuzzy? Need something a little creepier? (But not too creepy?) Try a cozy mystery with a Halloween setting:

What do YOU like to read in the Fall?



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