Serial Crime — with Character

Anne here talking about a mystery reading binge I've been on recently. I've always been a reader of mysteries, and still have an occasional yen to write a mystery one day. In the meantime, I enjoy reading other people's, and I thought I'd share my current faves with you, concentrating on series with ongoing characters.

I should explain that I'm not a fan of the scary/gory/horrific kind of crime novel — there's a reason I'm a romance writer; I like happy endings in my crime novels, meaning I like the scales of justice to be balanced by the end of the book. More or less. So my preference is for the kind of book called "cosy" mysteries. 

A famous crime writer whose name escapes me, commented once that in crime, it's the characters that people come back for again and again, that though readers enjoy nutting out the puzzle, afterward, they frequently forget the details of the puzzle, but not the characters. That's certainly the case with me. 

Kerry Greenwood – crime, baking and cats.

Kerry Greenwood - Earthly DelightsThis particular reading binge of mine started a while back, when I discovered Kerry Greenwood's Corinna Chapman series. I talked about her 1920's Phrynne Fisher books back here, which I've known about since the first one came out in the '90's. But this year I belatedly discovered her Corinna books, which are contemporary, not historical. And after the first, I devoured the rest of the series in short order.

They're set in the inner city of Melbourne (my home town) where you get a mix of wealthy apartment-dwellers and some lost, stolen and stray types — cats, as well as humans. There's warm-hearted, plus-sized Corinna, a former accountant now turned baker, Daniel, her sexy, mysterious boyfriend and Jason her apprentice — one of the strays I mentioned. 

The baker shop is at the bottom of a quirkily designed apartment building which houses an eclectic collection of humans, and from the second book in the series, cats, and it's this community of people that for me is the real draw card of the series. There are six books, so far, and Earthly Delights is the first. 

Louise Penny — Crime, Quebec and Characters
The next surge in my reading binge was caused by a Canadian writer, Louise Penny. Set in Quebec, much of the action takes place in the small village of Three Pines. It's an idyllic kind of village with a quirky collection of characters, often escapees from the rat race of city life. The star is the detective, Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, head of the Sûreté du Québec, thoughtful, wise and deeply human. Again, it's the characters and the community that appeal to me most.  StillLife

What I particularly enjoyed in these books, apart from the writing and the story, were the small touches of human observation, wry and sometimes gently humorous. For instance, this is from the first in Louise Penny's series — Still Life, the introduction of Gabri, the large and flamboyant gay chef who, with his partner, runs the local cafe.

Just then a large man in a frilly apron that said, "Never Trust a Skinny Cook" made his entrance through the swinging door.  Gamache was startled to see more than a passing resemblance to his grandmother.

Gabri sighed hugely and put a wan hand up to his forehead in a gesture not often seen this side of Gloria Swanson.

"Muffins?"

The question was so unexpected even Gamache was thrown off-guard. "Pardon Monsieur?"

"I have carrot, date, banana and a special tribute to Jane called 'Charles de Mills'." And with that Gabri disappeared and reappeared a moment later with a platter holding rings of muffins marvelously decorated with fruit and roses.

"They aren't Charles de Mille roses, of course. They're long dead." Gabri's face dissolved into tears and the platter lurched perilously. Only Beauvoir's quick action, fueled by desire, saved the food. 

"Desolé. Excusé-moi. I'm just so sad." Gabri collapsed on to one of the sofas, arms and legs flopping.

Gamache had the feeling that for all the dramatics, the man was sincere. He gave Gabri a moment to compose himself, fully realising it was possible Gabri had never been composed.

SilverPigsUSThere are three more crime series I want to recommend, all of which are historical. 

Lindsey Davis — Crime, Humor, In-laws and Devious Politics.
First is the Lindsey Davis "Falco" series, set in ancient Rome. The books are funny, complex, clever, beautifully researched and  also contain a gorgeous ongoing romance between Falco and his beloved Helena Justina.

Ellis Peters — Crime, Monks, Medicine and Politics.
Next is the Ellis Peters' Brother Cadfael series, which I've been reading and enjoying since the first or her medieval mysteries came out. Brother Cadfael is wise, clever, and though a monk, well seasoned by life. A wonderful series, engrossing, and rich in history. I also enjoyed the TV series of the books.

Lastly — and I'm very aware that I'm leaving out lots of wonderful books — is a newer writer — well, she's relatively new to crime, although she wrote some wonderful historical romances under the name Candice Proctor. I'm talking about C.S. Harris and her Sebastian St. Cyr series.  WhatAngelsFear

C.S. Harris  — Crime, Regency England, Romance.
Set in Regency England, these books are a delight. Clever, compelling, wonderfully researched and with a continuing romantic thread, they plunge you into the world of Regency England — both the ton and the underworld — in a wonderfully atmospheric way.

Now, there are many more wonderful mysteries, I know — the word wenches have had an ongoing conversation about them all week, which I plan to share next week, but for me, the above are the series that never fail. There are others — for instance, I adore Elizabeth P
eters' Crocodile on the Sandbank
— and why has that not been made into a movie yet? — but not all the books in the series have engrossed me as much. And I've read every Dick Francis book ever written, but I don't call that a series, because only a few have continuing characters.

But there are plenty of mysteries I've yet to read. So I'm asking you, do you read crime or mystery? If so, do you read for the puzzle or the characters, or both? Do you like series? What are your faves? Have you read any of the books mentioned above? Any recommendations?

165 thoughts on “Serial Crime — with Character”

  1. I love a good puzzle, but I never try to solve them. I’m happy to be surprised. I read cosies for the characters and the writing style, which is always fun, if not funny. And the restoration of order. Unabashedly like that!

    Reply
  2. I love a good puzzle, but I never try to solve them. I’m happy to be surprised. I read cosies for the characters and the writing style, which is always fun, if not funny. And the restoration of order. Unabashedly like that!

    Reply
  3. I love a good puzzle, but I never try to solve them. I’m happy to be surprised. I read cosies for the characters and the writing style, which is always fun, if not funny. And the restoration of order. Unabashedly like that!

    Reply
  4. I love a good puzzle, but I never try to solve them. I’m happy to be surprised. I read cosies for the characters and the writing style, which is always fun, if not funny. And the restoration of order. Unabashedly like that!

    Reply
  5. I love a good puzzle, but I never try to solve them. I’m happy to be surprised. I read cosies for the characters and the writing style, which is always fun, if not funny. And the restoration of order. Unabashedly like that!

    Reply
  6. Ah, Imelda, it’s the romance writer in you, I’m sure. The restoration of order — crimes equivalent to the happy ending. Me too.
    I do like working out the puzzle, and I often guess it before the end of the book, but what stays with me are the characters, not the details.
    Which is good, because I like to reread books.

    Reply
  7. Ah, Imelda, it’s the romance writer in you, I’m sure. The restoration of order — crimes equivalent to the happy ending. Me too.
    I do like working out the puzzle, and I often guess it before the end of the book, but what stays with me are the characters, not the details.
    Which is good, because I like to reread books.

    Reply
  8. Ah, Imelda, it’s the romance writer in you, I’m sure. The restoration of order — crimes equivalent to the happy ending. Me too.
    I do like working out the puzzle, and I often guess it before the end of the book, but what stays with me are the characters, not the details.
    Which is good, because I like to reread books.

    Reply
  9. Ah, Imelda, it’s the romance writer in you, I’m sure. The restoration of order — crimes equivalent to the happy ending. Me too.
    I do like working out the puzzle, and I often guess it before the end of the book, but what stays with me are the characters, not the details.
    Which is good, because I like to reread books.

    Reply
  10. Ah, Imelda, it’s the romance writer in you, I’m sure. The restoration of order — crimes equivalent to the happy ending. Me too.
    I do like working out the puzzle, and I often guess it before the end of the book, but what stays with me are the characters, not the details.
    Which is good, because I like to reread books.

    Reply
  11. I’ve read many of the Dick Francis books and most of Agatha Christie. Ellis Peters is one of my favorites! Love Brother Cadfael, both the book and the television series.
    Joanne Fluke’s Hannah Swensen is a baker her finds herself embroiled in murders, one book after another. The first is “Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder.” It includes recipes and tips throughout the book. It’s now my favorite chocolate chip cookie. I actually like her more for the recipes. LOL!

    Reply
  12. I’ve read many of the Dick Francis books and most of Agatha Christie. Ellis Peters is one of my favorites! Love Brother Cadfael, both the book and the television series.
    Joanne Fluke’s Hannah Swensen is a baker her finds herself embroiled in murders, one book after another. The first is “Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder.” It includes recipes and tips throughout the book. It’s now my favorite chocolate chip cookie. I actually like her more for the recipes. LOL!

    Reply
  13. I’ve read many of the Dick Francis books and most of Agatha Christie. Ellis Peters is one of my favorites! Love Brother Cadfael, both the book and the television series.
    Joanne Fluke’s Hannah Swensen is a baker her finds herself embroiled in murders, one book after another. The first is “Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder.” It includes recipes and tips throughout the book. It’s now my favorite chocolate chip cookie. I actually like her more for the recipes. LOL!

    Reply
  14. I’ve read many of the Dick Francis books and most of Agatha Christie. Ellis Peters is one of my favorites! Love Brother Cadfael, both the book and the television series.
    Joanne Fluke’s Hannah Swensen is a baker her finds herself embroiled in murders, one book after another. The first is “Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder.” It includes recipes and tips throughout the book. It’s now my favorite chocolate chip cookie. I actually like her more for the recipes. LOL!

    Reply
  15. I’ve read many of the Dick Francis books and most of Agatha Christie. Ellis Peters is one of my favorites! Love Brother Cadfael, both the book and the television series.
    Joanne Fluke’s Hannah Swensen is a baker her finds herself embroiled in murders, one book after another. The first is “Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder.” It includes recipes and tips throughout the book. It’s now my favorite chocolate chip cookie. I actually like her more for the recipes. LOL!

    Reply
  16. I’m a big fan of crime too, Anne. On the cosy-ish front I really like Jill McGown and Caroline Graham, although sadly neither seem to be still writing. Both brilliant writers, I think. If you like Louise Penney, I think you’d like both too. Was fond of Paula Gosling, too – also no longer writing, I don’t think. I loved The Silver Pigs, and read quite a few of that series before losing interest, but couldn’t come at Brother Cadfael at all …
    I also have a penchant for serial killer crime like P.J. Tracy, Tess Gerritsen and Karen Rose, all of whom have continuing characters and – phew – a happy ending.

    Reply
  17. I’m a big fan of crime too, Anne. On the cosy-ish front I really like Jill McGown and Caroline Graham, although sadly neither seem to be still writing. Both brilliant writers, I think. If you like Louise Penney, I think you’d like both too. Was fond of Paula Gosling, too – also no longer writing, I don’t think. I loved The Silver Pigs, and read quite a few of that series before losing interest, but couldn’t come at Brother Cadfael at all …
    I also have a penchant for serial killer crime like P.J. Tracy, Tess Gerritsen and Karen Rose, all of whom have continuing characters and – phew – a happy ending.

    Reply
  18. I’m a big fan of crime too, Anne. On the cosy-ish front I really like Jill McGown and Caroline Graham, although sadly neither seem to be still writing. Both brilliant writers, I think. If you like Louise Penney, I think you’d like both too. Was fond of Paula Gosling, too – also no longer writing, I don’t think. I loved The Silver Pigs, and read quite a few of that series before losing interest, but couldn’t come at Brother Cadfael at all …
    I also have a penchant for serial killer crime like P.J. Tracy, Tess Gerritsen and Karen Rose, all of whom have continuing characters and – phew – a happy ending.

    Reply
  19. I’m a big fan of crime too, Anne. On the cosy-ish front I really like Jill McGown and Caroline Graham, although sadly neither seem to be still writing. Both brilliant writers, I think. If you like Louise Penney, I think you’d like both too. Was fond of Paula Gosling, too – also no longer writing, I don’t think. I loved The Silver Pigs, and read quite a few of that series before losing interest, but couldn’t come at Brother Cadfael at all …
    I also have a penchant for serial killer crime like P.J. Tracy, Tess Gerritsen and Karen Rose, all of whom have continuing characters and – phew – a happy ending.

    Reply
  20. I’m a big fan of crime too, Anne. On the cosy-ish front I really like Jill McGown and Caroline Graham, although sadly neither seem to be still writing. Both brilliant writers, I think. If you like Louise Penney, I think you’d like both too. Was fond of Paula Gosling, too – also no longer writing, I don’t think. I loved The Silver Pigs, and read quite a few of that series before losing interest, but couldn’t come at Brother Cadfael at all …
    I also have a penchant for serial killer crime like P.J. Tracy, Tess Gerritsen and Karen Rose, all of whom have continuing characters and – phew – a happy ending.

    Reply
  21. I read a great many mysteries—most of them cozies. Among those on your list, Anne, I never miss a C. S. Harris, and I’ve recently discovered Louise Penny. My favorite mystery writer is Margaret Maron. I enjoy her Sigrid Harald books about a lone-wolf NYPD lieutenant, but her Deborah Knott mysteries (17 to date) about a North Carolina judge is my favorite mystery series. I also love Julia Spencer-Fleming’s series that centers around Clare Fergusson, an Episcopal priest, and Police Chief Russ Van Alstyne, set in Millers Kill, a small Adirondack town. Another favorite, Marie Force’s Fatal books, set in Washington, D. C., and featuring Police Detective Sam Holland and Senator Nick Cappuano, is classified as romantic suspense, but the books seem more cozy mysteries to me. It’s definitely the characters that keep me reading these series. In all three series, the main characters have rich contexts. The books are about relationships–familial, collegial, friendship, and romantic—and the setting is a vital ingredient. The mystery is important but secondary to the characters for me.

    Reply
  22. I read a great many mysteries—most of them cozies. Among those on your list, Anne, I never miss a C. S. Harris, and I’ve recently discovered Louise Penny. My favorite mystery writer is Margaret Maron. I enjoy her Sigrid Harald books about a lone-wolf NYPD lieutenant, but her Deborah Knott mysteries (17 to date) about a North Carolina judge is my favorite mystery series. I also love Julia Spencer-Fleming’s series that centers around Clare Fergusson, an Episcopal priest, and Police Chief Russ Van Alstyne, set in Millers Kill, a small Adirondack town. Another favorite, Marie Force’s Fatal books, set in Washington, D. C., and featuring Police Detective Sam Holland and Senator Nick Cappuano, is classified as romantic suspense, but the books seem more cozy mysteries to me. It’s definitely the characters that keep me reading these series. In all three series, the main characters have rich contexts. The books are about relationships–familial, collegial, friendship, and romantic—and the setting is a vital ingredient. The mystery is important but secondary to the characters for me.

    Reply
  23. I read a great many mysteries—most of them cozies. Among those on your list, Anne, I never miss a C. S. Harris, and I’ve recently discovered Louise Penny. My favorite mystery writer is Margaret Maron. I enjoy her Sigrid Harald books about a lone-wolf NYPD lieutenant, but her Deborah Knott mysteries (17 to date) about a North Carolina judge is my favorite mystery series. I also love Julia Spencer-Fleming’s series that centers around Clare Fergusson, an Episcopal priest, and Police Chief Russ Van Alstyne, set in Millers Kill, a small Adirondack town. Another favorite, Marie Force’s Fatal books, set in Washington, D. C., and featuring Police Detective Sam Holland and Senator Nick Cappuano, is classified as romantic suspense, but the books seem more cozy mysteries to me. It’s definitely the characters that keep me reading these series. In all three series, the main characters have rich contexts. The books are about relationships–familial, collegial, friendship, and romantic—and the setting is a vital ingredient. The mystery is important but secondary to the characters for me.

    Reply
  24. I read a great many mysteries—most of them cozies. Among those on your list, Anne, I never miss a C. S. Harris, and I’ve recently discovered Louise Penny. My favorite mystery writer is Margaret Maron. I enjoy her Sigrid Harald books about a lone-wolf NYPD lieutenant, but her Deborah Knott mysteries (17 to date) about a North Carolina judge is my favorite mystery series. I also love Julia Spencer-Fleming’s series that centers around Clare Fergusson, an Episcopal priest, and Police Chief Russ Van Alstyne, set in Millers Kill, a small Adirondack town. Another favorite, Marie Force’s Fatal books, set in Washington, D. C., and featuring Police Detective Sam Holland and Senator Nick Cappuano, is classified as romantic suspense, but the books seem more cozy mysteries to me. It’s definitely the characters that keep me reading these series. In all three series, the main characters have rich contexts. The books are about relationships–familial, collegial, friendship, and romantic—and the setting is a vital ingredient. The mystery is important but secondary to the characters for me.

    Reply
  25. I read a great many mysteries—most of them cozies. Among those on your list, Anne, I never miss a C. S. Harris, and I’ve recently discovered Louise Penny. My favorite mystery writer is Margaret Maron. I enjoy her Sigrid Harald books about a lone-wolf NYPD lieutenant, but her Deborah Knott mysteries (17 to date) about a North Carolina judge is my favorite mystery series. I also love Julia Spencer-Fleming’s series that centers around Clare Fergusson, an Episcopal priest, and Police Chief Russ Van Alstyne, set in Millers Kill, a small Adirondack town. Another favorite, Marie Force’s Fatal books, set in Washington, D. C., and featuring Police Detective Sam Holland and Senator Nick Cappuano, is classified as romantic suspense, but the books seem more cozy mysteries to me. It’s definitely the characters that keep me reading these series. In all three series, the main characters have rich contexts. The books are about relationships–familial, collegial, friendship, and romantic—and the setting is a vital ingredient. The mystery is important but secondary to the characters for me.

    Reply
  26. After the post on Kerry Greenwood, I devoured the books from both series. C. S. Harris is certainly one of my favorites –also Margaret Maron–again, especially the Deborah Knott mysteries. Dick Francis was a favorite. For most of my reading, if I don’t like the characters, I won’t bother to finish the book. Love your books, Anne! All have been reread more than once.

    Reply
  27. After the post on Kerry Greenwood, I devoured the books from both series. C. S. Harris is certainly one of my favorites –also Margaret Maron–again, especially the Deborah Knott mysteries. Dick Francis was a favorite. For most of my reading, if I don’t like the characters, I won’t bother to finish the book. Love your books, Anne! All have been reread more than once.

    Reply
  28. After the post on Kerry Greenwood, I devoured the books from both series. C. S. Harris is certainly one of my favorites –also Margaret Maron–again, especially the Deborah Knott mysteries. Dick Francis was a favorite. For most of my reading, if I don’t like the characters, I won’t bother to finish the book. Love your books, Anne! All have been reread more than once.

    Reply
  29. After the post on Kerry Greenwood, I devoured the books from both series. C. S. Harris is certainly one of my favorites –also Margaret Maron–again, especially the Deborah Knott mysteries. Dick Francis was a favorite. For most of my reading, if I don’t like the characters, I won’t bother to finish the book. Love your books, Anne! All have been reread more than once.

    Reply
  30. After the post on Kerry Greenwood, I devoured the books from both series. C. S. Harris is certainly one of my favorites –also Margaret Maron–again, especially the Deborah Knott mysteries. Dick Francis was a favorite. For most of my reading, if I don’t like the characters, I won’t bother to finish the book. Love your books, Anne! All have been reread more than once.

    Reply
  31. I generally prefer mysteries to crime, with a one exception. One of my favorite historical mystery series is by Sharon Kay Penman, and begins with The Queen’s Man. (The Queen in question is Eleanor of Aquitaine, after Henry’s death, when she’s serving as justiciar in Richard’s absence.) Another favorite series (which has more books) is Linda Fairstein’s Alexandra Cooper series. The main character holds the same position as a Manhattan Assistant District Attorney and head of the Special Victims Unit that Ms. Fairstein held for 25 years, and the books contain marvelous historical tidbits about New York City.

    Reply
  32. I generally prefer mysteries to crime, with a one exception. One of my favorite historical mystery series is by Sharon Kay Penman, and begins with The Queen’s Man. (The Queen in question is Eleanor of Aquitaine, after Henry’s death, when she’s serving as justiciar in Richard’s absence.) Another favorite series (which has more books) is Linda Fairstein’s Alexandra Cooper series. The main character holds the same position as a Manhattan Assistant District Attorney and head of the Special Victims Unit that Ms. Fairstein held for 25 years, and the books contain marvelous historical tidbits about New York City.

    Reply
  33. I generally prefer mysteries to crime, with a one exception. One of my favorite historical mystery series is by Sharon Kay Penman, and begins with The Queen’s Man. (The Queen in question is Eleanor of Aquitaine, after Henry’s death, when she’s serving as justiciar in Richard’s absence.) Another favorite series (which has more books) is Linda Fairstein’s Alexandra Cooper series. The main character holds the same position as a Manhattan Assistant District Attorney and head of the Special Victims Unit that Ms. Fairstein held for 25 years, and the books contain marvelous historical tidbits about New York City.

    Reply
  34. I generally prefer mysteries to crime, with a one exception. One of my favorite historical mystery series is by Sharon Kay Penman, and begins with The Queen’s Man. (The Queen in question is Eleanor of Aquitaine, after Henry’s death, when she’s serving as justiciar in Richard’s absence.) Another favorite series (which has more books) is Linda Fairstein’s Alexandra Cooper series. The main character holds the same position as a Manhattan Assistant District Attorney and head of the Special Victims Unit that Ms. Fairstein held for 25 years, and the books contain marvelous historical tidbits about New York City.

    Reply
  35. I generally prefer mysteries to crime, with a one exception. One of my favorite historical mystery series is by Sharon Kay Penman, and begins with The Queen’s Man. (The Queen in question is Eleanor of Aquitaine, after Henry’s death, when she’s serving as justiciar in Richard’s absence.) Another favorite series (which has more books) is Linda Fairstein’s Alexandra Cooper series. The main character holds the same position as a Manhattan Assistant District Attorney and head of the Special Victims Unit that Ms. Fairstein held for 25 years, and the books contain marvelous historical tidbits about New York City.

    Reply
  36. I read Robert B Parker’s Spenser novels from the beginning because of the characters. I am so sorry there will be no more.
    I reread something from Dorothy Sayers’s Lord Peter Wimsey series every few months; I think Murder Must Advertise is my favorite.
    Of current writers I really like Jacqueline Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs series. Subtle, literate and purposeful, with a sure sense of place and time.
    I also like Nick Drake’s series set in Ancient Egypt, beginning with Nefertiti.
    It’s not for the puzzles (about which I really don’t care), it’s for characters and ambience. All give me that sense of being swept away to a different place and time and into a different mindset.

    Reply
  37. I read Robert B Parker’s Spenser novels from the beginning because of the characters. I am so sorry there will be no more.
    I reread something from Dorothy Sayers’s Lord Peter Wimsey series every few months; I think Murder Must Advertise is my favorite.
    Of current writers I really like Jacqueline Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs series. Subtle, literate and purposeful, with a sure sense of place and time.
    I also like Nick Drake’s series set in Ancient Egypt, beginning with Nefertiti.
    It’s not for the puzzles (about which I really don’t care), it’s for characters and ambience. All give me that sense of being swept away to a different place and time and into a different mindset.

    Reply
  38. I read Robert B Parker’s Spenser novels from the beginning because of the characters. I am so sorry there will be no more.
    I reread something from Dorothy Sayers’s Lord Peter Wimsey series every few months; I think Murder Must Advertise is my favorite.
    Of current writers I really like Jacqueline Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs series. Subtle, literate and purposeful, with a sure sense of place and time.
    I also like Nick Drake’s series set in Ancient Egypt, beginning with Nefertiti.
    It’s not for the puzzles (about which I really don’t care), it’s for characters and ambience. All give me that sense of being swept away to a different place and time and into a different mindset.

    Reply
  39. I read Robert B Parker’s Spenser novels from the beginning because of the characters. I am so sorry there will be no more.
    I reread something from Dorothy Sayers’s Lord Peter Wimsey series every few months; I think Murder Must Advertise is my favorite.
    Of current writers I really like Jacqueline Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs series. Subtle, literate and purposeful, with a sure sense of place and time.
    I also like Nick Drake’s series set in Ancient Egypt, beginning with Nefertiti.
    It’s not for the puzzles (about which I really don’t care), it’s for characters and ambience. All give me that sense of being swept away to a different place and time and into a different mindset.

    Reply
  40. I read Robert B Parker’s Spenser novels from the beginning because of the characters. I am so sorry there will be no more.
    I reread something from Dorothy Sayers’s Lord Peter Wimsey series every few months; I think Murder Must Advertise is my favorite.
    Of current writers I really like Jacqueline Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs series. Subtle, literate and purposeful, with a sure sense of place and time.
    I also like Nick Drake’s series set in Ancient Egypt, beginning with Nefertiti.
    It’s not for the puzzles (about which I really don’t care), it’s for characters and ambience. All give me that sense of being swept away to a different place and time and into a different mindset.

    Reply
  41. Judy, I got a friend of mine reading the Ellis Peters’ Cadfael books when I lent her the DVDs of the TV show. She and her husband loved them, then scarfed up the books.
    Thanks for the recommendation of Joanna Fluke’s books. I hadn’t heard of them at all. I’ll chase that first one up.

    Reply
  42. Judy, I got a friend of mine reading the Ellis Peters’ Cadfael books when I lent her the DVDs of the TV show. She and her husband loved them, then scarfed up the books.
    Thanks for the recommendation of Joanna Fluke’s books. I hadn’t heard of them at all. I’ll chase that first one up.

    Reply
  43. Judy, I got a friend of mine reading the Ellis Peters’ Cadfael books when I lent her the DVDs of the TV show. She and her husband loved them, then scarfed up the books.
    Thanks for the recommendation of Joanna Fluke’s books. I hadn’t heard of them at all. I’ll chase that first one up.

    Reply
  44. Judy, I got a friend of mine reading the Ellis Peters’ Cadfael books when I lent her the DVDs of the TV show. She and her husband loved them, then scarfed up the books.
    Thanks for the recommendation of Joanna Fluke’s books. I hadn’t heard of them at all. I’ll chase that first one up.

    Reply
  45. Judy, I got a friend of mine reading the Ellis Peters’ Cadfael books when I lent her the DVDs of the TV show. She and her husband loved them, then scarfed up the books.
    Thanks for the recommendation of Joanna Fluke’s books. I hadn’t heard of them at all. I’ll chase that first one up.

    Reply
  46. Hi Jessica. I know Carolyn Graham, of course – mainly because so many of her books have been adapted for TV. I haven’t noticed them in the shops, but have often though I should chase her up. I’ve never read Jill McGown. I’ll chase her up, too — thanks. And I used to enjoy Paula Gosling’s books, too.
    Interesting you didn’t like the Brother Cadfael books. I wonder, was it your own historical knowledge that got in the way? Or simply that his character didn’t appeal. I confess I have a fondness for the books simply because I was in England when the first one (I think it was her first) was out in paperback, and I bought it because of the title – An Excellent Mystery.
    I also have Tess Gerritsen, though I haven’t glommed onto her as much. Series killers aren’t my cuppa.

    Reply
  47. Hi Jessica. I know Carolyn Graham, of course – mainly because so many of her books have been adapted for TV. I haven’t noticed them in the shops, but have often though I should chase her up. I’ve never read Jill McGown. I’ll chase her up, too — thanks. And I used to enjoy Paula Gosling’s books, too.
    Interesting you didn’t like the Brother Cadfael books. I wonder, was it your own historical knowledge that got in the way? Or simply that his character didn’t appeal. I confess I have a fondness for the books simply because I was in England when the first one (I think it was her first) was out in paperback, and I bought it because of the title – An Excellent Mystery.
    I also have Tess Gerritsen, though I haven’t glommed onto her as much. Series killers aren’t my cuppa.

    Reply
  48. Hi Jessica. I know Carolyn Graham, of course – mainly because so many of her books have been adapted for TV. I haven’t noticed them in the shops, but have often though I should chase her up. I’ve never read Jill McGown. I’ll chase her up, too — thanks. And I used to enjoy Paula Gosling’s books, too.
    Interesting you didn’t like the Brother Cadfael books. I wonder, was it your own historical knowledge that got in the way? Or simply that his character didn’t appeal. I confess I have a fondness for the books simply because I was in England when the first one (I think it was her first) was out in paperback, and I bought it because of the title – An Excellent Mystery.
    I also have Tess Gerritsen, though I haven’t glommed onto her as much. Series killers aren’t my cuppa.

    Reply
  49. Hi Jessica. I know Carolyn Graham, of course – mainly because so many of her books have been adapted for TV. I haven’t noticed them in the shops, but have often though I should chase her up. I’ve never read Jill McGown. I’ll chase her up, too — thanks. And I used to enjoy Paula Gosling’s books, too.
    Interesting you didn’t like the Brother Cadfael books. I wonder, was it your own historical knowledge that got in the way? Or simply that his character didn’t appeal. I confess I have a fondness for the books simply because I was in England when the first one (I think it was her first) was out in paperback, and I bought it because of the title – An Excellent Mystery.
    I also have Tess Gerritsen, though I haven’t glommed onto her as much. Series killers aren’t my cuppa.

    Reply
  50. Hi Jessica. I know Carolyn Graham, of course – mainly because so many of her books have been adapted for TV. I haven’t noticed them in the shops, but have often though I should chase her up. I’ve never read Jill McGown. I’ll chase her up, too — thanks. And I used to enjoy Paula Gosling’s books, too.
    Interesting you didn’t like the Brother Cadfael books. I wonder, was it your own historical knowledge that got in the way? Or simply that his character didn’t appeal. I confess I have a fondness for the books simply because I was in England when the first one (I think it was her first) was out in paperback, and I bought it because of the title – An Excellent Mystery.
    I also have Tess Gerritsen, though I haven’t glommed onto her as much. Series killers aren’t my cuppa.

    Reply
  51. Janga, thanks for the Margaret Maron recommendation. I’ll definitely chase her up. I love finding new-to-me authors who a) I like and b) have a backlist to glom. I’m reeeealy hoping I like the Deborah Knott series — 17 books! Woo hoo!
    I’ll also chase up Julia Spencer-Fleming and Marie Force (great name for a crime writer!) Thank you.

    Reply
  52. Janga, thanks for the Margaret Maron recommendation. I’ll definitely chase her up. I love finding new-to-me authors who a) I like and b) have a backlist to glom. I’m reeeealy hoping I like the Deborah Knott series — 17 books! Woo hoo!
    I’ll also chase up Julia Spencer-Fleming and Marie Force (great name for a crime writer!) Thank you.

    Reply
  53. Janga, thanks for the Margaret Maron recommendation. I’ll definitely chase her up. I love finding new-to-me authors who a) I like and b) have a backlist to glom. I’m reeeealy hoping I like the Deborah Knott series — 17 books! Woo hoo!
    I’ll also chase up Julia Spencer-Fleming and Marie Force (great name for a crime writer!) Thank you.

    Reply
  54. Janga, thanks for the Margaret Maron recommendation. I’ll definitely chase her up. I love finding new-to-me authors who a) I like and b) have a backlist to glom. I’m reeeealy hoping I like the Deborah Knott series — 17 books! Woo hoo!
    I’ll also chase up Julia Spencer-Fleming and Marie Force (great name for a crime writer!) Thank you.

    Reply
  55. Janga, thanks for the Margaret Maron recommendation. I’ll definitely chase her up. I love finding new-to-me authors who a) I like and b) have a backlist to glom. I’m reeeealy hoping I like the Deborah Knott series — 17 books! Woo hoo!
    I’ll also chase up Julia Spencer-Fleming and Marie Force (great name for a crime writer!) Thank you.

    Reply
  56. Thanks, Isobel — Tracy Grant, eh? I’ll look her up.
    Interesting how many mystery writers are women. Or is it simply that the ones by women go deeper into character and relationships, which is what women enjoy?

    Reply
  57. Thanks, Isobel — Tracy Grant, eh? I’ll look her up.
    Interesting how many mystery writers are women. Or is it simply that the ones by women go deeper into character and relationships, which is what women enjoy?

    Reply
  58. Thanks, Isobel — Tracy Grant, eh? I’ll look her up.
    Interesting how many mystery writers are women. Or is it simply that the ones by women go deeper into character and relationships, which is what women enjoy?

    Reply
  59. Thanks, Isobel — Tracy Grant, eh? I’ll look her up.
    Interesting how many mystery writers are women. Or is it simply that the ones by women go deeper into character and relationships, which is what women enjoy?

    Reply
  60. Thanks, Isobel — Tracy Grant, eh? I’ll look her up.
    Interesting how many mystery writers are women. Or is it simply that the ones by women go deeper into character and relationships, which is what women enjoy?

    Reply
  61. Aw, Jean, you’re a sweetheart for saying that — thank you.
    And you’re another Margaret Maron fan? I might just order her first Deborah Knott one on line right now.
    I agree with you about having to like characters to keep reading. I find it very hard to keep reading if a main character is someone I actively dislike. Difficult is different — for instance Cracker (TV forensic pychologist) as played by Robbie Coltrane is a complex, difficult, immensely flawed character, but I do care about what happens to him.

    Reply
  62. Aw, Jean, you’re a sweetheart for saying that — thank you.
    And you’re another Margaret Maron fan? I might just order her first Deborah Knott one on line right now.
    I agree with you about having to like characters to keep reading. I find it very hard to keep reading if a main character is someone I actively dislike. Difficult is different — for instance Cracker (TV forensic pychologist) as played by Robbie Coltrane is a complex, difficult, immensely flawed character, but I do care about what happens to him.

    Reply
  63. Aw, Jean, you’re a sweetheart for saying that — thank you.
    And you’re another Margaret Maron fan? I might just order her first Deborah Knott one on line right now.
    I agree with you about having to like characters to keep reading. I find it very hard to keep reading if a main character is someone I actively dislike. Difficult is different — for instance Cracker (TV forensic pychologist) as played by Robbie Coltrane is a complex, difficult, immensely flawed character, but I do care about what happens to him.

    Reply
  64. Aw, Jean, you’re a sweetheart for saying that — thank you.
    And you’re another Margaret Maron fan? I might just order her first Deborah Knott one on line right now.
    I agree with you about having to like characters to keep reading. I find it very hard to keep reading if a main character is someone I actively dislike. Difficult is different — for instance Cracker (TV forensic pychologist) as played by Robbie Coltrane is a complex, difficult, immensely flawed character, but I do care about what happens to him.

    Reply
  65. Aw, Jean, you’re a sweetheart for saying that — thank you.
    And you’re another Margaret Maron fan? I might just order her first Deborah Knott one on line right now.
    I agree with you about having to like characters to keep reading. I find it very hard to keep reading if a main character is someone I actively dislike. Difficult is different — for instance Cracker (TV forensic pychologist) as played by Robbie Coltrane is a complex, difficult, immensely flawed character, but I do care about what happens to him.

    Reply
  66. Susannah, I think I’ve read the Queen’s Man but it was ages ago. I know I’ve read some by Sharon Kay Penman.
    I’ve never read any of Linda Fairstein, or even heard of her — so thanks for the recommendation. So many books never make it to Australian bookshops, so thank goodness for on-line discussions and on-line bookstores.

    Reply
  67. Susannah, I think I’ve read the Queen’s Man but it was ages ago. I know I’ve read some by Sharon Kay Penman.
    I’ve never read any of Linda Fairstein, or even heard of her — so thanks for the recommendation. So many books never make it to Australian bookshops, so thank goodness for on-line discussions and on-line bookstores.

    Reply
  68. Susannah, I think I’ve read the Queen’s Man but it was ages ago. I know I’ve read some by Sharon Kay Penman.
    I’ve never read any of Linda Fairstein, or even heard of her — so thanks for the recommendation. So many books never make it to Australian bookshops, so thank goodness for on-line discussions and on-line bookstores.

    Reply
  69. Susannah, I think I’ve read the Queen’s Man but it was ages ago. I know I’ve read some by Sharon Kay Penman.
    I’ve never read any of Linda Fairstein, or even heard of her — so thanks for the recommendation. So many books never make it to Australian bookshops, so thank goodness for on-line discussions and on-line bookstores.

    Reply
  70. Susannah, I think I’ve read the Queen’s Man but it was ages ago. I know I’ve read some by Sharon Kay Penman.
    I’ve never read any of Linda Fairstein, or even heard of her — so thanks for the recommendation. So many books never make it to Australian bookshops, so thank goodness for on-line discussions and on-line bookstores.

    Reply
  71. Janice, I have a handful of Robert B Parker books on my shelves, slightly shabby and well-read.
    As for Dorothy Sayers, for some reason I never got into them. She’s a fave of so many of my friends and I did read one or two, but never glommed the rest. But that was a long time ago. It might be time to take another look at them.
    Those books came up in our wenchly discussion that I’m posting on Monday, as did Jacqueline Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs, which I haven’t read.

    Reply
  72. Janice, I have a handful of Robert B Parker books on my shelves, slightly shabby and well-read.
    As for Dorothy Sayers, for some reason I never got into them. She’s a fave of so many of my friends and I did read one or two, but never glommed the rest. But that was a long time ago. It might be time to take another look at them.
    Those books came up in our wenchly discussion that I’m posting on Monday, as did Jacqueline Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs, which I haven’t read.

    Reply
  73. Janice, I have a handful of Robert B Parker books on my shelves, slightly shabby and well-read.
    As for Dorothy Sayers, for some reason I never got into them. She’s a fave of so many of my friends and I did read one or two, but never glommed the rest. But that was a long time ago. It might be time to take another look at them.
    Those books came up in our wenchly discussion that I’m posting on Monday, as did Jacqueline Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs, which I haven’t read.

    Reply
  74. Janice, I have a handful of Robert B Parker books on my shelves, slightly shabby and well-read.
    As for Dorothy Sayers, for some reason I never got into them. She’s a fave of so many of my friends and I did read one or two, but never glommed the rest. But that was a long time ago. It might be time to take another look at them.
    Those books came up in our wenchly discussion that I’m posting on Monday, as did Jacqueline Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs, which I haven’t read.

    Reply
  75. Janice, I have a handful of Robert B Parker books on my shelves, slightly shabby and well-read.
    As for Dorothy Sayers, for some reason I never got into them. She’s a fave of so many of my friends and I did read one or two, but never glommed the rest. But that was a long time ago. It might be time to take another look at them.
    Those books came up in our wenchly discussion that I’m posting on Monday, as did Jacqueline Winspear’s Maisie Dobbs, which I haven’t read.

    Reply
  76. I recently finished re-reading some of Georgette Heyer mysteries My favorite is Why Shoot a Butler.
    I reccommend the Maisie Dobbs series…her latest is on my TBR pile.
    Also the Daisy Dalrymple series by Carolla Dunn…also in the 30s.
    There are so many good mysteries to read.

    Reply
  77. I recently finished re-reading some of Georgette Heyer mysteries My favorite is Why Shoot a Butler.
    I reccommend the Maisie Dobbs series…her latest is on my TBR pile.
    Also the Daisy Dalrymple series by Carolla Dunn…also in the 30s.
    There are so many good mysteries to read.

    Reply
  78. I recently finished re-reading some of Georgette Heyer mysteries My favorite is Why Shoot a Butler.
    I reccommend the Maisie Dobbs series…her latest is on my TBR pile.
    Also the Daisy Dalrymple series by Carolla Dunn…also in the 30s.
    There are so many good mysteries to read.

    Reply
  79. I recently finished re-reading some of Georgette Heyer mysteries My favorite is Why Shoot a Butler.
    I reccommend the Maisie Dobbs series…her latest is on my TBR pile.
    Also the Daisy Dalrymple series by Carolla Dunn…also in the 30s.
    There are so many good mysteries to read.

    Reply
  80. I recently finished re-reading some of Georgette Heyer mysteries My favorite is Why Shoot a Butler.
    I reccommend the Maisie Dobbs series…her latest is on my TBR pile.
    Also the Daisy Dalrymple series by Carolla Dunn…also in the 30s.
    There are so many good mysteries to read.

    Reply
  81. Heyer’s Why Shoot a Butler is a good book, I agree, Louis.
    Several people have mentioned the Maisie Dobbs series and also Daisy Dalrymple — clearly I am destined to read them. 😉

    Reply
  82. Heyer’s Why Shoot a Butler is a good book, I agree, Louis.
    Several people have mentioned the Maisie Dobbs series and also Daisy Dalrymple — clearly I am destined to read them. 😉

    Reply
  83. Heyer’s Why Shoot a Butler is a good book, I agree, Louis.
    Several people have mentioned the Maisie Dobbs series and also Daisy Dalrymple — clearly I am destined to read them. 😉

    Reply
  84. Heyer’s Why Shoot a Butler is a good book, I agree, Louis.
    Several people have mentioned the Maisie Dobbs series and also Daisy Dalrymple — clearly I am destined to read them. 😉

    Reply
  85. Heyer’s Why Shoot a Butler is a good book, I agree, Louis.
    Several people have mentioned the Maisie Dobbs series and also Daisy Dalrymple — clearly I am destined to read them. 😉

    Reply
  86. Hi Anne,
    I really enjoyed this post. One of my special treats is a Corinna Chapman mystery. I love the combination of mystery , fascinating characters and food that make these a luscious indulgence.
    As for the Falco novels – I’ve got every one! Found ‘The Silver Pigs’ in the library the year after it came out and have been buying them all as they are published – sadly only about one a year. Davis does a fantastic job of bringing ancient Rome to life. Such great characters too.
    Other faces – the Daisy Dalrymple stories and some of the older books by Georgette Heyer and Dorothy L Sayers. So many books – so little time.

    Reply
  87. Hi Anne,
    I really enjoyed this post. One of my special treats is a Corinna Chapman mystery. I love the combination of mystery , fascinating characters and food that make these a luscious indulgence.
    As for the Falco novels – I’ve got every one! Found ‘The Silver Pigs’ in the library the year after it came out and have been buying them all as they are published – sadly only about one a year. Davis does a fantastic job of bringing ancient Rome to life. Such great characters too.
    Other faces – the Daisy Dalrymple stories and some of the older books by Georgette Heyer and Dorothy L Sayers. So many books – so little time.

    Reply
  88. Hi Anne,
    I really enjoyed this post. One of my special treats is a Corinna Chapman mystery. I love the combination of mystery , fascinating characters and food that make these a luscious indulgence.
    As for the Falco novels – I’ve got every one! Found ‘The Silver Pigs’ in the library the year after it came out and have been buying them all as they are published – sadly only about one a year. Davis does a fantastic job of bringing ancient Rome to life. Such great characters too.
    Other faces – the Daisy Dalrymple stories and some of the older books by Georgette Heyer and Dorothy L Sayers. So many books – so little time.

    Reply
  89. Hi Anne,
    I really enjoyed this post. One of my special treats is a Corinna Chapman mystery. I love the combination of mystery , fascinating characters and food that make these a luscious indulgence.
    As for the Falco novels – I’ve got every one! Found ‘The Silver Pigs’ in the library the year after it came out and have been buying them all as they are published – sadly only about one a year. Davis does a fantastic job of bringing ancient Rome to life. Such great characters too.
    Other faces – the Daisy Dalrymple stories and some of the older books by Georgette Heyer and Dorothy L Sayers. So many books – so little time.

    Reply
  90. Hi Anne,
    I really enjoyed this post. One of my special treats is a Corinna Chapman mystery. I love the combination of mystery , fascinating characters and food that make these a luscious indulgence.
    As for the Falco novels – I’ve got every one! Found ‘The Silver Pigs’ in the library the year after it came out and have been buying them all as they are published – sadly only about one a year. Davis does a fantastic job of bringing ancient Rome to life. Such great characters too.
    Other faces – the Daisy Dalrymple stories and some of the older books by Georgette Heyer and Dorothy L Sayers. So many books – so little time.

    Reply
  91. Annie, I suspect you meant faves, not faces — both times. LOL.
    Next time you come to Melbourne, you’ll have to check out Corinna territory — a lot of the places mentioned in the book are real. As are some of the restaurants.
    Have you read the Rants page on Linsey Davis’s web page? Very funny.
    And you’re another person recommending Daisy Dalrymple — I’ll definitely have to chase her up. Thanks for dropping by.

    Reply
  92. Annie, I suspect you meant faves, not faces — both times. LOL.
    Next time you come to Melbourne, you’ll have to check out Corinna territory — a lot of the places mentioned in the book are real. As are some of the restaurants.
    Have you read the Rants page on Linsey Davis’s web page? Very funny.
    And you’re another person recommending Daisy Dalrymple — I’ll definitely have to chase her up. Thanks for dropping by.

    Reply
  93. Annie, I suspect you meant faves, not faces — both times. LOL.
    Next time you come to Melbourne, you’ll have to check out Corinna territory — a lot of the places mentioned in the book are real. As are some of the restaurants.
    Have you read the Rants page on Linsey Davis’s web page? Very funny.
    And you’re another person recommending Daisy Dalrymple — I’ll definitely have to chase her up. Thanks for dropping by.

    Reply
  94. Annie, I suspect you meant faves, not faces — both times. LOL.
    Next time you come to Melbourne, you’ll have to check out Corinna territory — a lot of the places mentioned in the book are real. As are some of the restaurants.
    Have you read the Rants page on Linsey Davis’s web page? Very funny.
    And you’re another person recommending Daisy Dalrymple — I’ll definitely have to chase her up. Thanks for dropping by.

    Reply
  95. Annie, I suspect you meant faves, not faces — both times. LOL.
    Next time you come to Melbourne, you’ll have to check out Corinna territory — a lot of the places mentioned in the book are real. As are some of the restaurants.
    Have you read the Rants page on Linsey Davis’s web page? Very funny.
    And you’re another person recommending Daisy Dalrymple — I’ll definitely have to chase her up. Thanks for dropping by.

    Reply
  96. Have you read ‘The Thin Woman” by Dorothy Cannell? There are quite a few sequels, but it was the first one that caught me. Had me laughing out loud at times. And it was the characters and the setting that have stayed with me.
    Thanks to the other writers who have suggested authors I have not tried yet. And I agree that Jacqueline Winspear (Maisie Dobbs), C.S. Harris (St. Cyr), and Louise Penney (Three Pines) are among the best of the current authors.
    Thanks for the post.

    Reply
  97. Have you read ‘The Thin Woman” by Dorothy Cannell? There are quite a few sequels, but it was the first one that caught me. Had me laughing out loud at times. And it was the characters and the setting that have stayed with me.
    Thanks to the other writers who have suggested authors I have not tried yet. And I agree that Jacqueline Winspear (Maisie Dobbs), C.S. Harris (St. Cyr), and Louise Penney (Three Pines) are among the best of the current authors.
    Thanks for the post.

    Reply
  98. Have you read ‘The Thin Woman” by Dorothy Cannell? There are quite a few sequels, but it was the first one that caught me. Had me laughing out loud at times. And it was the characters and the setting that have stayed with me.
    Thanks to the other writers who have suggested authors I have not tried yet. And I agree that Jacqueline Winspear (Maisie Dobbs), C.S. Harris (St. Cyr), and Louise Penney (Three Pines) are among the best of the current authors.
    Thanks for the post.

    Reply
  99. Have you read ‘The Thin Woman” by Dorothy Cannell? There are quite a few sequels, but it was the first one that caught me. Had me laughing out loud at times. And it was the characters and the setting that have stayed with me.
    Thanks to the other writers who have suggested authors I have not tried yet. And I agree that Jacqueline Winspear (Maisie Dobbs), C.S. Harris (St. Cyr), and Louise Penney (Three Pines) are among the best of the current authors.
    Thanks for the post.

    Reply
  100. Have you read ‘The Thin Woman” by Dorothy Cannell? There are quite a few sequels, but it was the first one that caught me. Had me laughing out loud at times. And it was the characters and the setting that have stayed with me.
    Thanks to the other writers who have suggested authors I have not tried yet. And I agree that Jacqueline Winspear (Maisie Dobbs), C.S. Harris (St. Cyr), and Louise Penney (Three Pines) are among the best of the current authors.
    Thanks for the post.

    Reply
  101. Lord Peter will always be my favorite by far and Nine Tailors is the best of the bunch. Only mystery I’ve ever read where I didn’t figure out who did it until the very last pages.
    Not quite cozy, but a detective who is so wonderfully oddball and quirky you either love or hate him is Pendergast, wonderfully written by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child. He was introduced in Relic and has really grown and developed since then. He’s a great character.
    Other than that, I don’t read them much anymore because I find I want an ending to my stories. So many aren’t self contained but just a prelude to another story. I at least need an end to the one I’m reading. Maybe I’ll give one or two on your list a try though. They do sound interesting.

    Reply
  102. Lord Peter will always be my favorite by far and Nine Tailors is the best of the bunch. Only mystery I’ve ever read where I didn’t figure out who did it until the very last pages.
    Not quite cozy, but a detective who is so wonderfully oddball and quirky you either love or hate him is Pendergast, wonderfully written by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child. He was introduced in Relic and has really grown and developed since then. He’s a great character.
    Other than that, I don’t read them much anymore because I find I want an ending to my stories. So many aren’t self contained but just a prelude to another story. I at least need an end to the one I’m reading. Maybe I’ll give one or two on your list a try though. They do sound interesting.

    Reply
  103. Lord Peter will always be my favorite by far and Nine Tailors is the best of the bunch. Only mystery I’ve ever read where I didn’t figure out who did it until the very last pages.
    Not quite cozy, but a detective who is so wonderfully oddball and quirky you either love or hate him is Pendergast, wonderfully written by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child. He was introduced in Relic and has really grown and developed since then. He’s a great character.
    Other than that, I don’t read them much anymore because I find I want an ending to my stories. So many aren’t self contained but just a prelude to another story. I at least need an end to the one I’m reading. Maybe I’ll give one or two on your list a try though. They do sound interesting.

    Reply
  104. Lord Peter will always be my favorite by far and Nine Tailors is the best of the bunch. Only mystery I’ve ever read where I didn’t figure out who did it until the very last pages.
    Not quite cozy, but a detective who is so wonderfully oddball and quirky you either love or hate him is Pendergast, wonderfully written by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child. He was introduced in Relic and has really grown and developed since then. He’s a great character.
    Other than that, I don’t read them much anymore because I find I want an ending to my stories. So many aren’t self contained but just a prelude to another story. I at least need an end to the one I’m reading. Maybe I’ll give one or two on your list a try though. They do sound interesting.

    Reply
  105. Lord Peter will always be my favorite by far and Nine Tailors is the best of the bunch. Only mystery I’ve ever read where I didn’t figure out who did it until the very last pages.
    Not quite cozy, but a detective who is so wonderfully oddball and quirky you either love or hate him is Pendergast, wonderfully written by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child. He was introduced in Relic and has really grown and developed since then. He’s a great character.
    Other than that, I don’t read them much anymore because I find I want an ending to my stories. So many aren’t self contained but just a prelude to another story. I at least need an end to the one I’m reading. Maybe I’ll give one or two on your list a try though. They do sound interesting.

    Reply
  106. I have to confess to mostly reading crime – strange for someone purporting to write romance!I think it comes from years of listening to audible books on the commute to and from work.
    Agree with your choices of Kerry Greenwood (I am reading the first Corinna book at the moment)and Lindsey Davis.
    But the stand out crime writer for me is James Lee Burke, particularly his Dave Robicheaux novels set in Louisiana. They are hard,unlovely stories but Burke is almost a literary writer in his ability to evoke the feel of place and the sense of character. Having been to New Orleans I can identify so well with his writing. Mesmeric

    Reply
  107. I have to confess to mostly reading crime – strange for someone purporting to write romance!I think it comes from years of listening to audible books on the commute to and from work.
    Agree with your choices of Kerry Greenwood (I am reading the first Corinna book at the moment)and Lindsey Davis.
    But the stand out crime writer for me is James Lee Burke, particularly his Dave Robicheaux novels set in Louisiana. They are hard,unlovely stories but Burke is almost a literary writer in his ability to evoke the feel of place and the sense of character. Having been to New Orleans I can identify so well with his writing. Mesmeric

    Reply
  108. I have to confess to mostly reading crime – strange for someone purporting to write romance!I think it comes from years of listening to audible books on the commute to and from work.
    Agree with your choices of Kerry Greenwood (I am reading the first Corinna book at the moment)and Lindsey Davis.
    But the stand out crime writer for me is James Lee Burke, particularly his Dave Robicheaux novels set in Louisiana. They are hard,unlovely stories but Burke is almost a literary writer in his ability to evoke the feel of place and the sense of character. Having been to New Orleans I can identify so well with his writing. Mesmeric

    Reply
  109. I have to confess to mostly reading crime – strange for someone purporting to write romance!I think it comes from years of listening to audible books on the commute to and from work.
    Agree with your choices of Kerry Greenwood (I am reading the first Corinna book at the moment)and Lindsey Davis.
    But the stand out crime writer for me is James Lee Burke, particularly his Dave Robicheaux novels set in Louisiana. They are hard,unlovely stories but Burke is almost a literary writer in his ability to evoke the feel of place and the sense of character. Having been to New Orleans I can identify so well with his writing. Mesmeric

    Reply
  110. I have to confess to mostly reading crime – strange for someone purporting to write romance!I think it comes from years of listening to audible books on the commute to and from work.
    Agree with your choices of Kerry Greenwood (I am reading the first Corinna book at the moment)and Lindsey Davis.
    But the stand out crime writer for me is James Lee Burke, particularly his Dave Robicheaux novels set in Louisiana. They are hard,unlovely stories but Burke is almost a literary writer in his ability to evoke the feel of place and the sense of character. Having been to New Orleans I can identify so well with his writing. Mesmeric

    Reply
  111. Diane, I haven’t read the Thin Woman — or even heard of it, but a book that makes people laugh sounds like a winner to me.
    Theo, thanks for that recommendation — I’ll look out for that Prendergast book, too. I too prefer an ending to my stories — maybe that’s why I’ve stopped reading some series. Interesting point.
    Alison, thanks for that James Lee Burke suggestion. I’ve never heard of those books, and clearly I should have.

    Reply
  112. Diane, I haven’t read the Thin Woman — or even heard of it, but a book that makes people laugh sounds like a winner to me.
    Theo, thanks for that recommendation — I’ll look out for that Prendergast book, too. I too prefer an ending to my stories — maybe that’s why I’ve stopped reading some series. Interesting point.
    Alison, thanks for that James Lee Burke suggestion. I’ve never heard of those books, and clearly I should have.

    Reply
  113. Diane, I haven’t read the Thin Woman — or even heard of it, but a book that makes people laugh sounds like a winner to me.
    Theo, thanks for that recommendation — I’ll look out for that Prendergast book, too. I too prefer an ending to my stories — maybe that’s why I’ve stopped reading some series. Interesting point.
    Alison, thanks for that James Lee Burke suggestion. I’ve never heard of those books, and clearly I should have.

    Reply
  114. Diane, I haven’t read the Thin Woman — or even heard of it, but a book that makes people laugh sounds like a winner to me.
    Theo, thanks for that recommendation — I’ll look out for that Prendergast book, too. I too prefer an ending to my stories — maybe that’s why I’ve stopped reading some series. Interesting point.
    Alison, thanks for that James Lee Burke suggestion. I’ve never heard of those books, and clearly I should have.

    Reply
  115. Diane, I haven’t read the Thin Woman — or even heard of it, but a book that makes people laugh sounds like a winner to me.
    Theo, thanks for that recommendation — I’ll look out for that Prendergast book, too. I too prefer an ending to my stories — maybe that’s why I’ve stopped reading some series. Interesting point.
    Alison, thanks for that James Lee Burke suggestion. I’ve never heard of those books, and clearly I should have.

    Reply
  116. Having grown up reading Agatha Christie, Dorothy L Sayers and Ngaio Marsh, I absolutely adore cosy crime mysteries. I tend to steer clear of gory crime novels (although I must admit to really enjoying Tess Gerritsen – even if I did skip the gory parts.)
    I absolutely adore Carola Dunn’s Daisy Dalrymple series (and thank you, Anne for introducing me to Kerry Greenwood’s Phryne Fisher and Corinna Chapman via this blog!), Simon Brett’s Fethering mysteries about two ladies of a certain age solving crimes in small rural villages around England, Hazel Holt’s wonderful Mrs Malory mysteries about an academic who always ends up embroiled in some kind of crime and the Agatha Raisin mysteries by MC Beaton.

    Reply
  117. Having grown up reading Agatha Christie, Dorothy L Sayers and Ngaio Marsh, I absolutely adore cosy crime mysteries. I tend to steer clear of gory crime novels (although I must admit to really enjoying Tess Gerritsen – even if I did skip the gory parts.)
    I absolutely adore Carola Dunn’s Daisy Dalrymple series (and thank you, Anne for introducing me to Kerry Greenwood’s Phryne Fisher and Corinna Chapman via this blog!), Simon Brett’s Fethering mysteries about two ladies of a certain age solving crimes in small rural villages around England, Hazel Holt’s wonderful Mrs Malory mysteries about an academic who always ends up embroiled in some kind of crime and the Agatha Raisin mysteries by MC Beaton.

    Reply
  118. Having grown up reading Agatha Christie, Dorothy L Sayers and Ngaio Marsh, I absolutely adore cosy crime mysteries. I tend to steer clear of gory crime novels (although I must admit to really enjoying Tess Gerritsen – even if I did skip the gory parts.)
    I absolutely adore Carola Dunn’s Daisy Dalrymple series (and thank you, Anne for introducing me to Kerry Greenwood’s Phryne Fisher and Corinna Chapman via this blog!), Simon Brett’s Fethering mysteries about two ladies of a certain age solving crimes in small rural villages around England, Hazel Holt’s wonderful Mrs Malory mysteries about an academic who always ends up embroiled in some kind of crime and the Agatha Raisin mysteries by MC Beaton.

    Reply
  119. Having grown up reading Agatha Christie, Dorothy L Sayers and Ngaio Marsh, I absolutely adore cosy crime mysteries. I tend to steer clear of gory crime novels (although I must admit to really enjoying Tess Gerritsen – even if I did skip the gory parts.)
    I absolutely adore Carola Dunn’s Daisy Dalrymple series (and thank you, Anne for introducing me to Kerry Greenwood’s Phryne Fisher and Corinna Chapman via this blog!), Simon Brett’s Fethering mysteries about two ladies of a certain age solving crimes in small rural villages around England, Hazel Holt’s wonderful Mrs Malory mysteries about an academic who always ends up embroiled in some kind of crime and the Agatha Raisin mysteries by MC Beaton.

    Reply
  120. Having grown up reading Agatha Christie, Dorothy L Sayers and Ngaio Marsh, I absolutely adore cosy crime mysteries. I tend to steer clear of gory crime novels (although I must admit to really enjoying Tess Gerritsen – even if I did skip the gory parts.)
    I absolutely adore Carola Dunn’s Daisy Dalrymple series (and thank you, Anne for introducing me to Kerry Greenwood’s Phryne Fisher and Corinna Chapman via this blog!), Simon Brett’s Fethering mysteries about two ladies of a certain age solving crimes in small rural villages around England, Hazel Holt’s wonderful Mrs Malory mysteries about an academic who always ends up embroiled in some kind of crime and the Agatha Raisin mysteries by MC Beaton.

    Reply
  121. Julie, thanks for reminding me of the Simon Brett books. I used to read his theatre ones and enjoyed them very much for the touches of humour, as well as the mystery. I haven’t come across his Fethering ones.
    And Hazel Holt is new to me as well. Thanks.

    Reply
  122. Julie, thanks for reminding me of the Simon Brett books. I used to read his theatre ones and enjoyed them very much for the touches of humour, as well as the mystery. I haven’t come across his Fethering ones.
    And Hazel Holt is new to me as well. Thanks.

    Reply
  123. Julie, thanks for reminding me of the Simon Brett books. I used to read his theatre ones and enjoyed them very much for the touches of humour, as well as the mystery. I haven’t come across his Fethering ones.
    And Hazel Holt is new to me as well. Thanks.

    Reply
  124. Julie, thanks for reminding me of the Simon Brett books. I used to read his theatre ones and enjoyed them very much for the touches of humour, as well as the mystery. I haven’t come across his Fethering ones.
    And Hazel Holt is new to me as well. Thanks.

    Reply
  125. Julie, thanks for reminding me of the Simon Brett books. I used to read his theatre ones and enjoyed them very much for the touches of humour, as well as the mystery. I haven’t come across his Fethering ones.
    And Hazel Holt is new to me as well. Thanks.

    Reply
  126. Artemisia has discovered Martin Walker’s lovely French countryside Bruno mysteries. There’s only 4 to date, and I am so looking forward to more. It starts with Bruno, Chief of Police, and goes to The Dark Vineyard and Black Diamond. There’s more to France than Paris! For cozies, try Nancy Atherton’s charming Aunt Dimity series. Starts with Aunt Dimity’s Death. Yes, Aunt Dimity is deceased. And keep an eye on the stuffed bunny. And thanks for all the ideas! (So many books, so little time.) Nobody mentioned Laurie R. King’s Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes books?

    Reply
  127. Artemisia has discovered Martin Walker’s lovely French countryside Bruno mysteries. There’s only 4 to date, and I am so looking forward to more. It starts with Bruno, Chief of Police, and goes to The Dark Vineyard and Black Diamond. There’s more to France than Paris! For cozies, try Nancy Atherton’s charming Aunt Dimity series. Starts with Aunt Dimity’s Death. Yes, Aunt Dimity is deceased. And keep an eye on the stuffed bunny. And thanks for all the ideas! (So many books, so little time.) Nobody mentioned Laurie R. King’s Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes books?

    Reply
  128. Artemisia has discovered Martin Walker’s lovely French countryside Bruno mysteries. There’s only 4 to date, and I am so looking forward to more. It starts with Bruno, Chief of Police, and goes to The Dark Vineyard and Black Diamond. There’s more to France than Paris! For cozies, try Nancy Atherton’s charming Aunt Dimity series. Starts with Aunt Dimity’s Death. Yes, Aunt Dimity is deceased. And keep an eye on the stuffed bunny. And thanks for all the ideas! (So many books, so little time.) Nobody mentioned Laurie R. King’s Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes books?

    Reply
  129. Artemisia has discovered Martin Walker’s lovely French countryside Bruno mysteries. There’s only 4 to date, and I am so looking forward to more. It starts with Bruno, Chief of Police, and goes to The Dark Vineyard and Black Diamond. There’s more to France than Paris! For cozies, try Nancy Atherton’s charming Aunt Dimity series. Starts with Aunt Dimity’s Death. Yes, Aunt Dimity is deceased. And keep an eye on the stuffed bunny. And thanks for all the ideas! (So many books, so little time.) Nobody mentioned Laurie R. King’s Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes books?

    Reply
  130. Artemisia has discovered Martin Walker’s lovely French countryside Bruno mysteries. There’s only 4 to date, and I am so looking forward to more. It starts with Bruno, Chief of Police, and goes to The Dark Vineyard and Black Diamond. There’s more to France than Paris! For cozies, try Nancy Atherton’s charming Aunt Dimity series. Starts with Aunt Dimity’s Death. Yes, Aunt Dimity is deceased. And keep an eye on the stuffed bunny. And thanks for all the ideas! (So many books, so little time.) Nobody mentioned Laurie R. King’s Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes books?

    Reply
  131. There are so many! I have just started reading the Corinna Chapman books, and I just read the fourth book of the Marcus Didius Falco series as well.
    I love Deanna Raybourn and the India Black series by Carol Carr is a lot of fun too. I am a little surprised that no one has yet mentioned Amelia Peabody – so much fun, set in the late 19th century and early 20th century!

    Reply
  132. There are so many! I have just started reading the Corinna Chapman books, and I just read the fourth book of the Marcus Didius Falco series as well.
    I love Deanna Raybourn and the India Black series by Carol Carr is a lot of fun too. I am a little surprised that no one has yet mentioned Amelia Peabody – so much fun, set in the late 19th century and early 20th century!

    Reply
  133. There are so many! I have just started reading the Corinna Chapman books, and I just read the fourth book of the Marcus Didius Falco series as well.
    I love Deanna Raybourn and the India Black series by Carol Carr is a lot of fun too. I am a little surprised that no one has yet mentioned Amelia Peabody – so much fun, set in the late 19th century and early 20th century!

    Reply
  134. There are so many! I have just started reading the Corinna Chapman books, and I just read the fourth book of the Marcus Didius Falco series as well.
    I love Deanna Raybourn and the India Black series by Carol Carr is a lot of fun too. I am a little surprised that no one has yet mentioned Amelia Peabody – so much fun, set in the late 19th century and early 20th century!

    Reply
  135. There are so many! I have just started reading the Corinna Chapman books, and I just read the fourth book of the Marcus Didius Falco series as well.
    I love Deanna Raybourn and the India Black series by Carol Carr is a lot of fun too. I am a little surprised that no one has yet mentioned Amelia Peabody – so much fun, set in the late 19th century and early 20th century!

    Reply
  136. Oh, and meant to say that I love the Julia Spencer-Fleming series too. I don’t read a lot of contemporary mysteries but her series is great!

    Reply
  137. Oh, and meant to say that I love the Julia Spencer-Fleming series too. I don’t read a lot of contemporary mysteries but her series is great!

    Reply
  138. Oh, and meant to say that I love the Julia Spencer-Fleming series too. I don’t read a lot of contemporary mysteries but her series is great!

    Reply
  139. Oh, and meant to say that I love the Julia Spencer-Fleming series too. I don’t read a lot of contemporary mysteries but her series is great!

    Reply
  140. Oh, and meant to say that I love the Julia Spencer-Fleming series too. I don’t read a lot of contemporary mysteries but her series is great!

    Reply

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