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Touring my TBR Spreadsheet and Shelves - December 2012

>> Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Touring my TBR Spreadsheet and Shelves

This month I’m talking about Cozy Mysteries.

This week is Cozy Mystery Week hosted by Jenn at Jenn's Bookshelves.

Cozy Mystery Week

While I am focusing my reviews this week on Cozy Mysteries it’s not possible for me to have a review from all the cozy series I read. For that reason I’m using this month’s Touring post to talk about a few of my favorite cozy mystery series that I’m not reviewing this week.
Thyme of Death by Susan Wittig Albert China Bayles Herbal Mysteries by Susan Wittig Albert
This series takes place in the present day in the hill country of Texas. China Bayles used to be a high powered attorney in Houston. Fed up with the rat race, she left Houston and her legal practice to buy an herb shop in the fictional small town of Pecan Springs.

Her best friend Ruby runs the New Age shop next door and the two of them seem to spend as much time getting themselves into trouble as the do solving mysteries.

I like the way the author uses China's legal background to keep her a little bit between total amateur sleuth and legal professional. The fact that her boyfriend is an ex Texas Ranger (the legal kind, not the baseball type) and teaches criminal justice at the local college also brings in an aspect of real police work to balance China and Ruby's more than regular missteps.

Every book includes a lot of information about various herbs and plants and their practical uses. There are also recipes included.
Crocodile on the Sandbank by Elizabeth Peters Amelia Peabody Adventures by Elizabeth Peters
Set in mostly Egypt (but sometimes England or other Middle East locations) between 1884 and 1923. This series features the outspoken and often inadvertently hilarious Amelia Peabody.

The series is presented as her journals edited and published many years after they were written. In later books they are interspersed with excerpts from additional manuscripts and letters that are from the point of view of her children.

Amelia's adventures feature her and her archaeologist husband Emerson as they explore and manage excavations in Egypt at about the same time as many other famous archaeologists and explorers.

Many actual people appear throughout the books including Howard Carter who is famous for discovering King Tut's tomb in 1923.
Them Bones by Carolyn Haines Sarah Booth Delaney Mysteries by Carolyn Haines
Set in a small town in contemporary Mississippi, Dahlia House is the ancestral home of Sarah Booth Delaney's family. Sarah has returned home after giving up on an acting career in New York but the cost of keeping up the family home is proving to be tough.

There's someone else living at Dahlia House, though. The problem is that she died in 1904. Jitty is a sassy entertaining ghost who can nag Sarah and cause more trouble that some living folks can. When Jitty was alive, she was the nanny for Sarah's Great Great Grandmother. Jitty needs to help Sarah keep Dahlia House because having the house stay in the family is the only way Jitty can stick around.

This leads to some hilarious conversations and interactions. Although Jitty is often a little too concerned with getting Sarah to produce a Delaney heir, she's still a crackup. You never know how Jitty will appear. What Sarah will see Jitty wearing will often depend on Jitty's mood or motivations. It can be anything from any era, whether or not was alive at that time. Jitty's 1960's era phase was hilarious.
Murphy's Law by Rhys Bowen Molly Murphy Mysteries by Rhys Bowen
This is another historical series. Molly Murphy arrives in New York City in 1901. She's left Ireland after fighting off the advances of a wealthy landowner's son and accidentally landing herself in serious legal trouble. She meets up with Kathleen O'Conner who heading to America with her son and daughter to join her husband there. When Kathleen's health prevents her boarding the ship Molly takes the children and Kathleen's ticket.

On arrival in New York she takes the children to their father but by now the kids are wrapped around her heart and will always be a part of her life.

An unfortunate set of circumstances leave Molly as the prime suspect of a murder on Ellis Island and her efforts to clear her own name lead her to an unlikely apprenticeship with a private detective.

Are you a fan of Cozy Mysteries? What are your favorites. Be sure to head over to Jenn's Bookshelves this week to see what's up for Cozy Mystery Week,


Beth F 12/04/2012 7:07 AM  

The Sarah Booth Delaney series is new to me. I'll have to check it out.

Jan 12/04/2012 2:54 PM  

That one is new to me, too. Thanks.

Jenn's Bookshelves 12/05/2012 9:14 AM  

Oooh! More "new to me" series! Thank you!

SuziQoregon 12/22/2012 9:13 PM  

Beth:F: Oh you'd like the Sarah Booth Delaney series. Hope you give it a try. Jitty the ghost is a crackup.

Jan: same to you.

Jenn: payback - it's what you deserve ;-)

Thanks for reading. Feel free to leave a comment. I read and respond them here although not always right away. If you would prefer an email response let me know.

I do moderate comments on posts older than 14 days in order to control spam. I will approve your legitimate comments as soon as I can.

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