Cozy mysteries get a bad rap. They’re derided for being simplistic, formulaic, and predictable. And, okay, most of them are. But who cares.
Cozy mysteries are called cozy for a reason. They are cozy – they are comfortable, unsurprising and every time you read the new one in a series it’s like you are revisiting an old friend. Cozy mysteries invariably take place in small towns with an eclectic cast of characters. Some have caffeine addictions, some are addicted to desserts, some are gossips, and you’ll learn these things and want to know what these crazy people will do next!
And in these small towns, among these crazy characters, and amidst the murders, there are inevitably love triangles – good, clean love triangles – that either resolve themselves within the course of a book or come close to doing so. Rarely does the end of a cozy mystery leave you hanging. When you’re out for a read that gives you zero stress, a cozy mystery is the way to go.
What many cozy mysteries do leave the reader wondering, though, is, how many more people do these small towns have to spare? With each passing book in a series, one, two, even three people die! And, then, someone has to be arrested for these murders, so that’s one more person out of the population and into jail.
But that’s okay, because as the cast gets smaller, that can mean new, more fun eccentric characters! And often eccentric characters come with pets – pets who sometimes help solve the mysteries. Cozy mysteries have a very particular audience and the writers and publishers know their audience well. There’s cozy mysteries featuring cats, cozy mysteries that take place in a literary themed hotel, cozy mysteries based around a knitting store, a bakery, and of course a bookstore, and one series even features both a cat and a librarian! What more can an introverted reader want in a book to snuggle up with?
Cozy mysteries aren’t literary masterpieces, but they’re not supposed to be. They are escapism, pure and simple. And what’s wrong with using a book to forget about this crazy world while you sip tea and wonder if your cat, too, can solve a mystery? Nothing, absolutely nothing, is wrong with that. So if you’ve been convinced that you need a soothing, quick read that takes place in a small town, check out these series’:
- Cat in the Stacks by Miranda James (Cats! Librarian!)
- Booktown Mysteries by Lorna Barnett (Bookstore!)
- Knitting Mysteries by Maggie Sefton (Strong females! Knitting!)
- Southern Ladies Mysteries by Miranda James (Old sassy southern women!)
- Nick & Nora Mysteries by T.C. LoTempio (Cats! Sandwiches!)
- Book Retreat Mysteries by Ellery Adams (Literary themed hotel!)
- Black Cat Bookshop Mysteries by Ali Brandon (Cat! Bookstore!)
- Fat Cat Mysteries by Janet Cantrell (Cat! Bakery!)
- Raven’s Nest Series by Alison Kingsley (Bookstore! Maine coast! Quaint!)
- And of course, The Cat Who… Series by Lillian Jackson Braun (Cats! Journalist!)
Brew your tea, grab a blanket, and get cozy!
YouTube Channel: Emily May
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