First Person Narrator in Cozy Mysteries

The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha ChristieRecently, I was asked the following question, by mystery reader Garaghty:

… So, I have a strange question: Have (you) come across a cozy written from the first person point of view? I know that a feature of the cozy is that intimacy, where the reader solves right along with the likable protagonist, but I’ve noticed that most are still written in 3rd person.  I was wondering if you knew of an exception…

Curtain by Agatha ChristieThank you, Garaghty, for such an interesting question, and I hope you come to love Cozies as much as I do! My initial response was that I have read very few Cozies that have been written from a first person point of view, but the more I thought about it, the more examples I came up with that actually use the first person perspective to help immerse the reader into the setting.

Agatha Christie herself, perhaps the greatest Cozy Mystery author ever, occasionally used first person perspective, especially early in her career. Poirot’s chief assistant and friend, Captain Arthur Hastings, was her most common narrator, narrating both the first Poirot case, The Mysterious Affair at Styles, as well as the last, Curtain – if you’re interested in reading a first person point of view Cozy, the Mysterious Affair at Styles would be an excellent selection!

The Adventure of the Empty House by Sir Arthur Conan DoyleAnother excellent example of first person point of view in Cozy Mysteries is one of the earliest examples of detective fiction, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Though not considered a Cozy at the time (obviously, since the term “Cozy” wouldn’t be coined for decades), the Sherlock Holmes novels have many of the elements later covered by Cozies – an amateur (albeit brilliant, in the case of Holmes) detective, solving cases using a unique perspective not shared by the police, with relatively little graphic bloodshed or other unsavory elements. All of Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes famous cases were narrated by his faithful chronicler and assistant, Doctor Watson. Even the few mysteries where Watson was absent for part of the mystery were often recounted afterwards as Watson’s retelling of Holmes’s story, such as in The Adventure of the Empty House, when Holmes explains how he managed to survive what seemed like certain death at Reichenbach Falls.

Miss Marple: The Complete Short Stories by Agatha ChristieThat said, it is worth noting that the individual we follow in these novels is rarely the detectives themselves, but is far more often their primary assistant. I think this is because entering the mind of the detective is often too much of a risk – exposing the “inner workings” of a genius mind like Sherlock Holmes while retaining the character’s mystique might be too tall an order, even for the character’s creator! There are some exceptions – Christie did have Miss Marple narrate one story, Miss Marple Tells a Story, though portrayed as a letter to her nephew Raymond after the fact rather than as the case occurred – but these seem to be exceptions rather than the rule.

The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha ChristieEven using the assistant has the risk of making the narrator seem slow or incompetent, especially if the reader can solve the puzzle faster than the narrator. With a more traditional third-person point of view, there is always some question when exactly the detective learns who committed the crime – hardly a possibility if we know their every thought! In some circles, a relatively slow, bumbling character who only exists to ask questions for the detective to answer is often referred to as “the Watson”, despite the fact that as a medical doctor, Watson must have been quite intelligent in his own right! Unfortunately it only takes one or two cases where the narrator seems at a loss while the reader has already noticed the true culprit before a character’s credibility is seriously damaged. A more distant detective might instead reasonably claim that they were waiting for decisive evidence to move against the criminal, who they naturally identified much earlier.

Dog On It by Spencer QuinnI can think of two more books and one series that have the first person perspective right off the top of my head: Marion Babson‘s The Twelve Deaths of Christmas, Agatha Christie‘s The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, and Spencer Quinn‘s Chet and Bernie Mystery Series, although, Chet is a first tail-waggin’ narrator!

Yikes! It looks like I’ve gone a little longer than I realized on this one! Thanks again, Garaghty, for such a good question – I hope I answered it fully!

Can anyone else think of some good examples of first person point of view in Cozies? Please leave a comment!

P.S. I am getting so many great comments about mysteries that are told in the first person perspective that, rather than list them on this entry, I’m going to highlight them in the comments so that if you’re interested, you can check the authors out. Be sure to read the terrific comments!

2014 Nero Award & Black Orchid Novella Award

Murder as a Fine Art by David MorrellWell, I’ve finally posted this year’s winner on my Nero Awards page – big congratulations to David Morell for his novel, Murder as a Fine Art!

Of course, all the other nominees deserve congratulations as well – it’s a big honor to be nominated for an award as prestigious as the Nero! The Nero Awards are given out by the “Wolfe Pack”, a fan club devoted to author Rex Stout‘s “Nero Wolfe” series. This worldwide club’s members originally formed in 1977 specifically to discuss Rex Stout’s Nero Wolfe (and don’t forget Archie Goodwin!) series. The Nero has since grown into one of the most prestigious awards available in mystery fiction.

As I said before, all the nominees should be honored – here’s a full list, in case you’re interested in looking up their works!

2014 Black Orchid Awards Nominees:

Murder as a Fine Art by David Morrell (winner!)

Ask Not by Max Allan Collins

Three Can Keep a Secret by Archer Mayor

A Study in Revenge by Kieran Sheilds

A Question of Honor by Charles Todd

A Question of Honor by Charles ToddIn addition to giving out the Nero Award, the Wolfe Pack also recently awarded their Black Orchid Novella Award (which you can find on this page), presented jointly with the Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine to an outstanding shorter mystery work. This year, the winner is K.G. McAbee, for “Dyed to Death”. The chairperson for this award was Jane K. Cleland – of particular note to us Cozy Mystery fans as a very popular author in her own right, having recently released the ninth book in her popular Josie Prescott AntiquesMystery Series (Blood Rubies)!

If you’d like to take a look at more mystery awards, here is the link to my Mystery Book Awards page.

Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death Television Movie

Good news! Ian sent me a note all the way from across the pond telling me something I absolutely have GOT to share with you all. M.C. Beaton‘s first Agatha Raisin mystery has been made into a television movie. Since they are showing the movie in Great Britain on Boxing Day (December 26), we should be getting “Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death” pretty soon.

Ian:

Just in case you’re not aware, the first Agatha Raisin book ‘…and the Quiche of Death’ has been filmed and is going to be on Sky1 (in the UK at least) on Boxing Day. The trailer makes it look quite good and it stars Ashley Jensen (Extras) as Agatha.

Thank you, Ian! We won’t be seeing it for a while, but it’s great to know they have made it!

Here’s the trailer I found on YouTube:

I’m already looking forward to seeing this television movie. If you’re anything like me, you are probably wondering why Ashley Jensen (a beautiful, trim blond) is playing Agatha Raisin. Keep in mind, they had beautiful Sharon Small playing Sgt. Barbara Havers in the Inspector Lynley television shows, and that show was very good.

Again, thank you, Ian!

Elizabeth Lee, Elizabeth Kane Buzzelli, Leighann Dobbs, Kathleen Ernst, & Mary McHugh : Four (or Five?) New Cozy Mystery Authors on the Cozy Mystery Site

You all have sent me some great recommendations for Cozy Mystery authors who I should post on the site, and I don’t know why it takes me so long to finally get their pages up! Well, I have finally finished getting pages made of four authors – one of whom uses two names, thus the 4 or 5 dilemma.

A Tough Nut to Kill by Elizabeth Lee (aka Elizabeth Kane Buzzilli) Elizabeth Lee (aka Elizabeth Kane Buzzelli)  Elizabeth Lee writes the Nut House Mystery Series, which takes place in Texas. The sleuth in this series is Lindy Blanchard, a biologist. Lindy works on her family’s pecan farm as a bioengineer, trying to develop the best pecan crops her family can grow. Lindy also works in the farm’s shop, where they sell all sorts of pecan products. Oh, and Lindy also works at solving mysteries!

Dead Little Dolly by Elizabeth Kane Buzzelli (aka Elizabeth Lee) Elizabeth Kane Buzzelli (aka Elizabeth Lee)  Elizabeth Kane Buzzelli writes the Emily Kincaid Mystery Series, which takes place in Michigan. Emily is a reporter who sort of works with Dolly Wakowski, a deputy, solving crimes.

 

A Zen for Murder by Leighann Dobbs Leighann Dobbs  Leighann Dobbs writes several different Cozy Mystery series. Her Lexy Baker series features a baker who gets a lot of help from her grandmother (and her friends!) when solving crimes. Dobbs also writes the Blackmoore Sisters Romantic Cozy Mystery Series, which features two sisters who sell herbal remedies and crystals. Oh, and they can communicate with their dead grandmother. Willa Chance is a crime journalist who sees ghosts in the Mystic Notch Cozy Mystery Series. Dobbs also writes the Mooseamuck Island Mystery Series which takes place in Maine, and features two police consultants, one of whom is a retired police detective and the other, a retired psychologist. Dobbs also writes the Fancytales series (which are based on fairy tales) and the  Kate Diamond Adventure Series.

Tradition of Deceit by Kathleen Ernst Kathleen Ernst Kathleen Ernst writes the Chloe Ellefson Mystery Series, as well as several American Girl History Mystery books and American Girl mysteries for children. Ernst worked at a living museum in Wisconsin for twelve years, which sounds like the basis for her Chloe Ellefson series. Chloe is a sleuth who is the curator at a living history museum in Wisconsin, during the 1980s. Ernst has been nominated for several Agatha Awards for Best Children’s/Young Adult mysteries and she was also nominated for an Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Juvenile mystery.

Chorus Lines, Caviar, and Corpses by Mary McHugh Mary McHugh  Mary McHugh pens the Happy Hoofers Mystery Series. The Happy Hoofers are a group of friends in their fifties who love to tap dance. They love tapping so much that they now tour the world showing off their tap dancing skills. They travel to places like Russia and Spain, not just tap dancing their ways across the globe, but also solving mysteries. McHugh has written articles for the “Sophisticated Traveler” section of the New York Times.

Free, Cheap, and On Sale Christmas & Hanukkah Kindles, December 2014

Agatha Christie: Hercule Poirot's Christmas (aka Murder for Christmas)Since it’s December, I thought it would be a nice change of pace if I didn’t do the Free, Cheap, and On Sale Kindle mysteries the regular way >>> highlighting different authors. Instead, I am going to focus on the Christmas and Hanukkah Kindle mysteries that are priced so low. I found these mysteries by going to my Christmas theme lists, which you can do by clicking on the link at the end of this entry.

Here are the Free, Cheap, or On-Sale Kindle Mysteries that are Christmas or Hanukkah themed. This list is made up of the Kindle mysteries that cost less than $5.00.

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Lydia Adamson: A Cat in the Manger ….. $4.27

Lydia Adamson: A Cat in the Wings ….. $4.27

Hannah Alexander & Jill Elizabeth Nelson: Season of Danger: Silent Night, Deadly Night\Mistletoe Mayhem ….. $4.74

Tasha Alexander: Star of the East  ….. $1.99 (story )

Barbara Allan: Antiques Flee Market ….. $4.30

Barbara Allan: Antiques Slay Ride ….. $1.99 (novella)

Barbara Allan: Antiques Fruitcake ….. $1.99 (novella)

Pat Amsden: A Christmas to Die For ….. $1.99

Donna Andrews, Barb Goffman, & Marcia Talley (editors): Homicidal Holidays: Fourteen Tales of Murder and Merriment ….. $3.82

Mary Kay Andrews (Kathy Hogan Trochek): Fatal Fruitcake ….. $0.99 (story)

Carolyn Arnold: Christmas is Murder ….. $1.99

Kathleen Bacus: Six Geese a’ Slaying (Story) ….. $1.99

Isis Crawford: A Catered Christmas: A Mystery with RecipesJodie Bailey, Debby Giusti, & Susan Sleeman: Holiday Defenders ….. $4.74

Deb Baker: Murder Trims the Tree ….. $1.99 (novella)

David Baldacci: The Christmas Train ….. $4.04

Donna Ball: All that Glitters ….. $1.99  (story)

Mignon F. Ballard: How Still We See Thee Lie (aka Deadly Promise)….. $2.99

Christy Barritt: High-Stakes Holiday Reunion ….. $4.74

Christy Barritt: It Came Upon a Midnight Crime ….. $0.99

Cindy Bell: Mistletoe, Makeup and Murder ….. $2.99

Jenna Bennett: A Done Deal ….. $4.99

Ron & Janet Benrey: Season of Glory ….. $4.74

Laurien Berenson: Jingle Bell Bark ….. $4.61

William Bernhardt:  The Midnight Before Christmas ….. $1.99

Gavin Black: Dragon for Christmas ….. $3.99

Nero Blanc: A Crossworder’s Holiday ….. $1.99

Nero Blanc: A Crossworder’s Gift ….. $1.99

Nero Blanc: Wrapped Up in Crosswords ….. $3.99

Nero Blanc: A Crossworder’s Delight ….. $3.03

Katherine Hall Page: The Body in the Sleigh Cheryl Bolen: The Theft Before Christmas ….. $2.99 (novella)

Gale Borger: Totally Decked ….. $0.99 (story)

Amanda Brice: Nine Ladies Dancing (story) ….. $1.99

Christina A. Burke: Queenie Baby: Pass the Eggnog (Novella) ….. $2.99

Lynn Cahoon: If the Shoe Kills ….. $4.61

Leslie Caine (aka Barbara Block): Holly and Homicide ….. $3.99

Tori Carrington: Queens Ransom ….. $2.99

C. S. Challinor: Christmas is Murder ….. $1.99

Agatha Christie: Hercule Poirot’s Christmas (aka Murder for Christmas) ….. $1.99

Carol H. Clark & Mary H. Clark: The Christmas Thief ….. $1.99

Carol H. Clark & Mary H. Clark: Santa Cruise ….. $1.99

Christine E. Collier: Christmas at Cliffhanger Inn ….. $3.99

Christine E. Collier: A Holiday Sampler ….. $3.03

Max Allan Collins: No Cure for Death ….. $3.99

Max Allan Collins: Spree ….. $3.99

Sharon Love Cook: A Deadly Christmas Carol ….. $2.99

Lesley Cookman: Murder at Mallowan Manor ….. $0.99 (story)

Caroline Cousins: Fiddle Dee Death ….. $4.99

Laurien Berenson: Jingle Bell BarkIsis Crawford: A Catered Christmas: A Mystery with Recipes ….. $4.30

Jessie Crockett: Live Free or Die ….. $0.99

Deborah Crombie: Water Like a Stone ….. $1.99

Waverly Curtis:  A Chihuahua in Every Stocking ….. $1.99 (novella)

Kathi Daley: Christmas Crazy ….. $0.99

Kathi Daley: Christmas in Paradise ….. $2.99

Kathi Daley: Christmas Cozy ….. $2.99

Kyra Davis:  Seven Swans a’ Shooting ….. $1.99 (story)

Janet Dawson: Nobody’s Child ….. $3.99

William DeAndrea: Killed on the Ice ….. $1.99

Vicki Delany: Winter of Secrets ….. $4.99

Jana DeLeon: Eight Maids a’ Missing ….. $1.99 (story)

Susan Donovan: A Partridge in the Au Pair’s Tree ….. $1.99 (story)

Kaitlyn Dunnett (aka Kathy Lynn Emerson): A Wee Christmas HomicideTim Dorsey: When Elves Attack ….. $0.99

Charlotte Douglas: Holidays are Murder ….. $4.74

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle: The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle ….. $0.99 (story)

Caroline Dunford: The Mistletoe Mystery ….. $0.99 (story)

Kaitlyn Dunnett (aka Kathy Lynn Emerson): A Wee Christmas Homicide ….. $4.30

Barbara Early: Gold, Frankincense, and Murder ….. $0.99 (novella)

Lynette Eason: Christmas Cover-Up ….. $4.74

Lynette Eason: Holiday Hideout ….. $4.74

Mignon G. Eberhart: Postmark Murder ….. $1.99

Kathy Lynn Emerson (aka Kaitlyn Dunnett):  A Wee Christmas Homicide ….. $4.30

K.J. Emrick: The Ghost of Christmas ….. $0.99 (novella)

Loren D. Estleman: The Glass Highway ….. $1.99

Tony Fennelly: Home Dead for Christmas ….. $2.99

Jane Finnis:  Buried Too Deep (Feast of Saturnalia mystery) ….. $4.99

Joanne Fluke: Sugar Cookie Murder ….. $4.99

Joanne Fluke: Candy Cane Murders (w/Leslie Meier & Laura Levine) ….. $4.99

Joanne Fluke: Plum Pudding Murder ….. $4.92

Angie Fox: The Tenth Dark Lord a’ Leaping ….. $1.99 (story)

Andrea Frazer: Snowballs and Scotch Mist ….. $2.99

Andrea Frazer : Christmas Mourning ….. $2.99

Sara Hoskinson Frommer: Witness in Bishop Hill ….. $2.99

Carol H. Clark & Mary H. Clark: The Christmas ThiefJ. Alan Hartman (editor): The Killer Wore Cranberry ….. $2.99 (anthology)

J. Alan Hartman (editor): The Killer Wore Cranberry: A Second Helping ….. $2.25 (anthology)

J. Alan Hartman (editor): The Killer Wore Cranberry: Room for Thirds ….. $2.99 (anthology)

Anne George: Murder on a Bad Hair Day ….. $4.74

Debby Giusti, Jodie, Bailey, & Susan Sleeman: Holiday Defenders ….. $4.74

Jeanne Glidewell: The Spirit of the Season ….. $3.49 (novella)

Barb Goffman, Donna Andrews, & Marcia Talley (editors): Homicidal Holidays: Fourteen Tales of Murder and Merriment ….. $3.82

Ginny Gold: Gingerdead Man….. $2.99

Jean G. Goodhind : The Ghost of Christmas Past ….. $2.99

Edward Gorman: Murder on the Aisle ….. $2.99

Jim Green: Miss Tayke Investigates Murder Under the Mistletoe ….. $2.99 (story)

Kerry Greenwood: Forbidden Fruit ….. $4.99

Jackie Griffey: The Nelson Scandal ….. $3.99

Elly Griffiths: Ruth’s First Christmas ….. FREE (story)

Jane Haddam: A Stillness in Bethlehem ….. $1.99

Jane Haddam: Not A Creature was Stirring ….. $1.99

Parnell Hall: A Puzzle in a Pear Tree ….. $4.27

Gemma Halliday: Twelve’s Drummer Dying ….. $1.99 (story)

Joanne Fluke: Plum Pudding MurderGemma Halliday (editor?):  Cozy Christmas Capers: 19 Holiday Short Stories (anthology) ….. $1.99

Dashiell Hammett: The Thin Man ….. $1.25

Ken Harmon:  The Fat Man: A Tale of North Pole Noir ….. $3.79

Carolyn Hart: Merry, Merry Ghost ….. $4.99

Ellen Hart: Vital Lies ….. $3.99

John Harvey: Cold Light ….. $3.03

Sandra Heath: Mistletoe Mischief ….. $3.99

Steve Hockensmith: Naughty: Nine Tales of Christmas Crime ….. $2.99

Dorothy Howell: Slay Bells and Satchels ….. $4.99

John Howlett: The Christmas Spy ….. $2.99

Mary Ellen Hughes: Wreath of Deception ….. $3.99

Fergus Hume: The Coin of Edward VII ….. $2.99

Ellen Elizabeth Hunter: Murder on the Candlelight Tour ….. $3.99

Ellen Elizabeth Hunter: Christmas Wedding ….. $3.99

Ellen Elizabeth Hunter: Murder at the Holiday Flotilla ….. $3.99

Judith K. Ivie:  Drowning in Christmas ….. $2.99

Melanie Jackson: Murder on Parade ….. $2.99

Melanie Jackson: Requiem at Christmas ….. $2.99

Sue Ann Jaffarian: Ho Ho Humbug ….. $0.99 (2 short stories)

Heather Webber: Trouble Under the TreeJ.A. Jance: A Last Goodbye ….. $0.99 (novella)

Nancy Lynn Jarvis: Buying Murder ….. $2.99

Craig Johnson: Christmas in Absaroka County: Walt Longmire Christmas Stories ….. $3.79

Eleanor Cawood Jones: Death is Coming to Town: Four Murderous Holiday Tales ….. $0.99

Karin Kaufman: The Witch Tree ….. $0.99

Robin Kaye: The Goose, The Gander, and Three French Hens ….. $1.99 (story)

Diane Kelly: Death, Taxes, and Mistletoe Mayhem ….. $1.99 (novella)

Diane Kelly: Five Gold Smuggling Rings ….. $1.99 (story)

Kate Kingsbury: No Clue at the Inn ….. $3.99

Henry Kisor: Season’s Revenge: A Christmas Mystery ….. $3.99

Alanna Knight: The Dagger in the Crown ….. $4.55

Marcia Landreth: The Holiday Murders ….. $2.99

Leslie Langry: Four Killing Birds ….. $1.99 (story)

Jane Langton: The Memorial Hall Murder ….. $3.03

Kim Law: Two Turtle Island Doves ….. $1.99 (story)

Laura Levine: Candy Cane Murders (w/ Joanne Fluke & Leslie Meier) ….. $4.99

Donna Andrews, Barb Goffman, & Marcia Talley (editors): Homicidal Holidays: Fourteen Tales of Murder and MerrimentHarper Lin: Killer Christmas (Novella) ….. FREE

Christopher Lord: The Christmas Carol Murders ….. $3.99

Elaine Macko: Armed ….. $3.99

Charlotte MacLeod: The Convivial Codfish ….. $1.99

Charlotte MacLeod: Rest You Merry ….. $1.99

Charlotte MacLeod: Murder Goes Mumming ….. $3.03

H.P. Mallory: Eleven Snipers Sniping ….. $1.99 (story)

Bill Marantz: Christmas Eve Can Kill You ….. $2.99

Jeff Markowitz: It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Murder ….. $2.99

Nancy Martin: Slay Belles ….. $3.79 (novella)

Ed McBain:  The Pusher ….. $3.99

Ed McBain: Sadie When She Died ….. $3.99

Ed McBain: Ghosts ….. $3.99

Ed McBain: Eight Black Horses ….. $3.99

Ed McBain: Puss in Boots ….. $3.99

Donna McLean: A Sparrow Falls Christmas ….. $0.99 (story)

Donna McLean: A Sparrow Falls Holiday (Includes 4 stories: the above Christmas, Halloween, Valentine’s Day, & Fourth of July) ….. $2.99

Nancy Mehl: There Goes Santa Claus ….. $4.99

Leslie Meier: Mail Order Murder ….. $1.99

Leslie Meier: Christmas Cookie Murder ….. $4.99

Leslie Meier: Mistletoe Murder ….. $1.99

Leslie Meier: Candy Cane Murders (w/Joanne Fluke & Laura Levine) ….. $4.99

Doris R. Meredith: Murder by Sacrilege ….. $2.99

Jay Mims: The Five Santas ….. $2.99

Camille Minichiino: The Helium Murder ….. $3.99

David Morrell: The Spy Who Came for Christmas ….. $3.99

Meg Muldoon: Murder in Christmas River ….. $2.99

Meg Muldoon :  Madness in Christmas River ….. $3.99

Carolyn Hart: Merry, Merry Ghost Shirley Rousseau Murphy: Cat Deck the Halls ….. $1.99

Shirley Rousseau Murphy: Cat Coming Home ….. $1.99

Shirley Rousseau Murphy:  Cat Telling Tales ….. $3.79

Magdalen Nabb:  Death of an Englishman ….. $1.99

Jill Elizabeth Nelson & Hannah Alexander: Season of Danger: Silent Night, Deadly Night\Mistletoe Mayhem  ….. $4.74

Jemima Norton: The Mistletoe Bride ….. $0.99

Clare O’Donohue: Cathedral Windows ….. $2.99 (novella)

Martha Ockley: The Advent of Murder ….. $0.99

Katherine Hall Page: The Body in the Sleigh ….. $1.99

Carol Lynn Pearson: A Stranger for Christmas ….. $4.99

Joanne Pence:  The Thirteenth Santa ….. $2.99 (novella)

Joanne Pence: Cook’s Curious Christmas ….. $3.99 (novella)

Sara Penhallow:  The Christmas Tree Farm Murders ….. $2.99

Ashantay Peters: Death Under the Mistletoe ….. $2.99 (novella)

Elizabeth Peters: Trojan Gold ….. $3.99

Mary Monica Pulver: Original Sin ….. $3.99

Colin Quashie: Spirits in a Material World ….. $0.99

Sally Quilford: Mistletoe Mystery ….. $0.99

Randy Rawls:  Jingle’s Christmas ….. $2.99

Deanna Raybourn: Silent Night: A Lady Julia Christmas Novella ….. $1.99

Deanna Raybourn: Twelfth Night ….. $1.99 (novella)

David W. Robinson: Christmas Crackers ….. $2.99

David W. Robinson: A Murder for Christmas ….. $2.99

Patricia Rockwell: Papoosed ….. $2.99

Gail G. Roper: Caught in the Act ….. $4.50

Lawrence Rotch: Mistletoe and Murder ….. $2.99

Jenna Ryan: Mistletoe and Murder ….. $4.50

Lawrence Sanders: The Fourth Deadly Sin ….. $3.03

Mary Monica Pulver: Original SinIlene Schneider: Chanukah Guilt (Hanukkah) ….. $0.99

Maria E. Schneider: Executive Sick Days ….. $4.99

Mark Schweizer: The Christmas Cantata ….. $0.99 (novella-length)

Laura Scott: Her Mistletoe Protector ….. $4.74

Kate Sedley: The Christmas Wassail ….. $3.82

M.R. Sellars: Perfect Trust ….. $3.49

J.D. Shaw: Yule Be the Death of Me ….. $2.99

Connie Shelton: Sweet Holidays ….. $4.99

Connie Shelton: Holidays Can Be Murder ….. $2.99 (novella)

Susan Sleeman: Silent Night Standoff ….. $4.74

Susan Sleeman: The Christmas Witness ….. $4.74

Susan Sleeman, Jodie Bailey, & Debby Giusti: Holiday Defenders ….. $4.74

Patricia H. Sprinkle: Mystery Bred in Buckhead ….. $3.99

N.E. Sully: A Mystery & Some Mistletoe ….. $2.99 (novella)

Marcia Talley, Donna Andrews, & Barb Goffman (editors): Homicidal Holidays: Fourteen Tales of Murder and Merriment ….. $3.82

Hudson Taylor: Death of a Christmas Tree Man ….. $0.99

Nancy Tesler: Slippery Slopes and Other Deadly Things ….. $2.99

Nancy Jill Thames: Waiting for Santa ….. $3.99

Billie Thomas: Murder on the First Day of Christmas ….. $2.99

Charles Todd: The Walnut Tree: A Holiday Tale ….. $1.99

Gayle Trent (aka Amanda Lee): Claus of Death ….. $0.99

Suzanne Young: Murder by Christmas Kathy Hogan Trochek (aka Mary Kay Andrews): Fatal Fruitcake ….. $0.99 (story)

Laina Turner: Mistletoe & Murder ….. $0.99 (story)

Lea Wait: Shadows on a Maine Christmas ….. $4.99

Martin Walker: Bruno and the Carol Singers ….. $0.99 (novella)

Tamara Ward: Jade O’Reilly and the 12 Days of Christmas ….. $0.99 (story/novella)

Heather Webber: Trouble Under the Tree ….. $2.99

Marvin J. Wolf: For Whom the Shofar Blows (Hanukkah) ….. $4.99

Suzanne Young: Murder by Yew ….. $2.99

Suzanne Young: Murder by Christmas ….. $2.99

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Leslie Meier: Christmas Cookie Murder If you’re interested in seeing all of the Christmas theme mystery books, click on this link:

Christmas Mystery Book List

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(All of these Kindle Christmas mystery books are on sale right now, but I don’t know how long this will last, so please check the price before you get one. Also, if you take a look at some of the older Free and Cheap Kindle/Nook mysteries, you may find some that are still under $5.00. The links are below.)

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I try not to list Cozy Mystery authors that I have listed on at least the six previous Free and Cheap Kindle Mystery Book lists, so you might want to take a look at these latest six entries >>> some of the Cozy Mystery books may still be available at great prices:

November 2014

September 2014

August 10, 2014

July 17, 2014

June 10, 2014

May 21, 2014

For more Free and Cheap Kindle Mystery Books click here.♦

Best Selling Authors with Children’s or Young Adult Mystery Series, Part 3

Today we’ll be continuing our ongoing look at mystery series that are appropriate for children or young adults by authors who are usually thought of as mystery authors for adults.

The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau I will begin with Joelle Charbonneau. She writes the Glee Club Mystery Series and the Rebecca Robbins Mystery Series for adult mystery readers. She also writes the Testing thriller series for young adults. The first mystery in this series is called The Testing, and it introduces us to Cia Vale, a gifted graduate who has been chosen to attend a program for potential leaders of the new civilization (post-war). (It was nominated for the Agatha Award for Best Children/Young Adult mystery.) This sounds like a sci-fi mystery sereis that is aimed at young adults.

The Edge of Nowhere by Elizabeth George Most modern mystery fans are probably familiar with Elizabeth George‘s Inspector Lynley Mystery Series, but fewer are probably aware that George recently began a young adult series, the Becca King Mystery Series. The description calls it “the first young adult book.”) In The Edge of Nowhere, when young Becca accidentally discovers her stepfather’s illicit activities, she quickly finds herself stranded on Whidbey Island, just a short ferry ride from Seattle, Washington. It was nominated for both the Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Young Adult and the Agatha Award for Best Children/Young Adult mystery. The Becca King Mystery series is probably most appropriate for younger teenagers, age 13-15 or so.

The Fledgling by Jane Langton Jane Langton writes the Homer Kelly Mystery Series (for adults) which features a Harvard professor. Something I just very recently became aware of is that she is the same Jane Langton who writes the Hall Family Chronicles Mystery Series for children. These mysteries are geared for children in the fifth grade and up. The Diamond in the Window is the first in the series, and was nominated for the prestigious Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Juvenile mystery. The Fledgling is the fourth in the Hall Family Chronicles Series.

Oracles of Delphi Keep by Victoria Laurie Victoria Laurie, author of the very popular paranormal Psychic Eye Mystery Series and the Ghost Hunter Mystery Series also writes a paranormal mystery series for children. The Oracles of the Delphi Mystery Series introduces us to Ian Wigbyin in the first book called Oracles of Delphi Keep. Ian and his sister (Theo) live in Delphi Keep orphanage, on the English southern coast. Ian and Theo find a special treasure box, and from there, they are on exciting adventures, solving mysteries with their group of friends.

Virals by Kathy Reichs Kathy Reichs, author of the Temperance Brennan (Bones) Mystery Series for adults writes the Virals Series for young adults. She wrote the first two by herself, but was then joined by her son, Brendan Reichs, for the rest. This series has, as its sleuth, Tory Brennan, the niece of Temperance Brennan (Bones). Virals (the first mystery in this young adults series) was nominated for the Agatha Award for Best Children/Young Adult mystery.

The Secret of the Skeleton Key by Penny Warner (aka Penny Pike) Penny Warner‘s Code Busters Club Mystery Series stands out even among fellow Agatha nominees, as it has won once and been nominated twice more – and it would be a bit surprising if she didn’t get at least a nomination this year for the fourth book! The first book in the series, The Secret of the Skeleton Key, introduces readers to Cody, Quinn, Luke, and M.E., the members of the Code Busters, as they try to decode a message left by a neighbor – a code that could just be an SOS! The Code Busters Club series includes a number of codes within the books themselves for children to solve, and provides answers in the back if you get stuck. The Code Busters series is most appropriate for children ages 9-12.

The Pea Soup Poisonings by Nancy Means WrightFinally, Nancy Means Wright is the author of both the Mary Wollstonecraft Mystery Series and the Ruth Willmarth Mystery Series, both series are for adult mystery lovers. She is also the author of the Northern Spy Mystery Series. Inspired by the Nancy Drew mysteries, Wright’s two children-appropriate mystery novels revolve around Zoe Elwood and the Northern Spy Club of Northern Vermont. The first book, The Pea Soup Poisonings, which won the 2006 Agatha Award for Best Children/Young Adult mystery, revolves around young Zoe’s attempts to get into the Northern Spy Club by solving the possible-murder of a friend’s grandmother after eating a bowl of pea soup. The 2nd mystery book is called The Great Circus Train Robbery, and it was nominated for the very prestigious Agatha Award for Best Children/Young Adult mystery.

This is the last of this mini-series of entries. Have I missed your favorite young adult or children’s mystery series? Let me know in the comments!

Best Selling Authors with Children’s or Young Adult Mystery Series, Part 1

Best Selling Authors with Children’s or Young Adult Mystery Series, Part 2

Mystery Books for Pre Teens…

Enjoying December with All Its Preparations

December14111111115868798I have been waiting patiently for December to begin. Well, I guess it has been more like IMpatiently! Two months ago MJ wrote a couple of comments that caught my eye. I wanted to showcase her comments during December, since most of us like to do special things around our houses during December. You know, things like decorating a tree, or baking cookies >>> perhaps from a recipe out of one of our Cozy Mystery authors’ culinary mysteries!

MJ’s comment from October 15:

Autumn is my favorite season, too. I live in an area where we can enjoy fall and all its glorious colors. You should see my house! I have LOTS of fall decorations. But, I believe we had this discussion a year ago…………

MJ’s comment from October 16:

I’m obviously veering off-topic AGAIN……….But, I put up my fall decorations right after Labor Day and leave them up until after Thanksgiving, so I can get the maximum enjoyment out of them. I even have 4 different quilts/bedspreads for the bed to ‘change’ with the seasons! I REALLY like the ‘fall’ bedroom. I probably put up more fall decor than xmas decor. Fanatic?……..perhaps.

MJ’s comment from October 17:

I also change the bathrooms seasonally, putting in different shower curtains and towels for fall, winter, and spring/summer in two bathrooms.

Also wanted to mention (since I am so-o-o-o-o far off topic), there is a WONDERFUL Pumpkin Curry soup recipe at the Nestle website. It’s great for the fall season and is easy, easy easy. Even those that don’t like pumpkin love this soup. The curry makes it pop (without over powering it)!

Very Best Baking by Nestle: Pumpkin Curry Soup 

Another yummy/tasty new fall item (at least new to me) is Pepperidge Farm’s Caramel Apple Bread and also their Pumpkin Spice Bread — both are so-o-o-o good! They even make great french toast.

Well………at least the foods are ‘fall’ related!!

Most people are probably done reading this particular entry, so these fall food suggestions are probably for naught.

Nope, MJ, your suggestions are not for naught! (And, I think Pumpkin Curry soup sounds great for the winter months as well!)

Here’s my question for ALL of you: Do you have some delicious food items like MJ’s Pepperidge Farm’s breads you would share with us? Or is there a special recipe like MJ’s Nestle’s Pumpkin Curry soup you wouldn’t mind telling us about?