Discussion Forums - Mystery & Thrillers

Topic: Cozy themes, a fun add-on thread (NOT a game)

Club rule - Please, if you cannot be courteous and respectful, do not post in this forum.
Page:   Unlock Forum posting with Annual Membership.
Subject: Cozy themes, a fun add-on thread (NOT a game)
Date Posted: 3/22/2009 4:59 PM ET
Member Since: 5/29/2007
Posts: 13,347
Back To Top

Since taking up cozies I've noticed the GINORMOUS number of themes.  I thought it would be fun to try and list them and to ask others too.  Some I purposely look for, like coffee series, or wine series, but other's I've been introduced to by you all here.  So I thought if I started a thread it would be both fun and helpful.  One of you may list a series I've not yet heard of.  Feel free to add on, please add on!  Ha ha.  If you want to just type it out, or add the link, include isbn's or don't, whatever you want to do.  :)  I just wonder how many themes there are.


One of the first series I read, and continue to read as the come out, is the Coffeehouse series by Cleo Coyle.  Theme, of course, is coffee

I've also enjoyed the Wine Lover's series by Michele Scott http://www.paperbackswap.com/book/author/Michele+Scott Theme, of course, is wine.  There is another wine series as well, but I've forgotten the name right now.

There's also a new series and the theme is a bookstore, the murders take place in a bookstore and are solved by the owner of the bookstore.  The author is Lorna Barnett.  http://www.paperbackswap.com/book/author/Lorna+Barrett

Last Edited on: 3/22/09 5:02 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 3/22/2009 7:57 PM ET
Member Since: 5/29/2007
Posts: 13,347
Back To Top

This series, has a theme of an advice columnist as the slueth. She's also a psychologist, so, sort of dual themed.   I've read one of the Advice Column Mysteries by Roberta Isleib.  It seems there's 3 so far.


Date Posted: 3/22/2009 10:08 PM ET
Member Since: 8/11/2006
Posts: 6,597
Back To Top

Tim Myers has five series:   http://www.stopyourekillingme.com/M_Authors/Myers_Tim.html

  • Hatteras West Inn and Lighthouse
  • Candle shop
  • specialty soap store
  • custom card shop  
  • pottery shop

Laura Childs has three cozy series:   http://www.stopyourekillingme.com/C_Authors/Childs_Laura.html

  • tea shop
  • scrapbooking shop
  • Cackleberry Club

Sammie Carter's books feature a candy shop.   http://www.stopyourekillingme.com/C_Authors/Carter_Sammi.html


Last Edited on: 3/22/09 10:51 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 3/22/2009 10:32 PM ET
Member Since: 11/13/2006
Posts: 2,346
Back To Top

Barbara Colley and Ann Purser have series about housecleaners (maid services)

Susan Wittig Albert writes about a lady who owns an herb shop




Kat (polbio) -
Date Posted: 3/23/2009 7:30 AM ET
Member Since: 10/10/2008
Posts: 3,067
Back To Top

Denise Osborn writes Feng Shui Mysteries http://stopyourekillingme.com/O_Authors/Osborne_Denise.html

Susan COnnent solves murders that happen around dogs in the Dog Lover's Mysteries, she also writes a Cat Lovers Mysteries and a Gourmet Girls series. http://stopyourekillingme.com/C_Authors/Conant_Susan.html

Veronica Black aka Maureen Peters  writes the Sister JOan Mysteries about a woman who joins a convent in her 30's and finds herself sluething. http://stopyourekillingme.com/B_Authors/Black_Veronica.html

I found one the other day that looks interesting. Cozies about a FOrensic Geologist by Sarah Andrews http://stopyourekillingme.com/A_Authors/Andrews_Sarah.html

JB Stanley has two series A Collectible Mysteries and the Supper Club Mysteries. The Collectible Mysteries are about a woman who writes articles for Collector's Weekly and slueths on the side. The Supper Club I havent read but they are about a librarian. http://stopyourekillingme.com/S_Authors/Stanley_J-B.html

Date Posted: 3/23/2009 12:52 PM ET
Member Since: 12/25/2005
Posts: 1,413
Back To Top

Animal themed  (mostly cats)

Rita Mae Brown                     Mrs. Murphy  and The Foxhunting series.  Both are good

Susan Wittig Albert               The Cottage Tales Of Beatrix Potter

Evan Marshall                        Winky and Jane

Lillian Jackson Braun          The Cat Who

Carole Nelson Douglas       Midnight Louie

Shirley Rousseau Murphy    Joe Grey series

Lydia Adamson                       Alice Nestleton  ( a cat sitter and actress)

Gilbert Morris                          I know he has a cat series, just can't remember the name of it.


Last Edited on: 3/23/09 12:57 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/23/2009 12:58 PM ET
Member Since: 12/25/2005
Posts: 1,413
Back To Top

 International  Themed

Dicey Deere         "Torrey Tunet"             Irish

Rhys Bowen         "Molly Murphy"            Irish

Maddie Hunter      "varied countries"

Rhys Bowen           Evan Evans              Welsh

Rhys Bowen           Her Royal Spyness       British

Last Edited on: 3/23/09 1:05 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/23/2009 1:08 PM ET
Member Since: 12/25/2005
Posts: 1,413
Back To Top

Culinary Themes


Diane Mott Davidson                     "Goldy"

Joanne Pence                               " Angie Amalfi"

Joanne Fluke                                 "Hannah Swenson"

Last Edited on: 3/23/09 1:09 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/23/2009 1:11 PM ET
Member Since: 12/25/2005
Posts: 1,413
Back To Top

Tamar Meyers has the  "Den of Antiquity"   (antiques/ flea market type)  series  and The Amish Inn one... (could fall under both Inns and culinary) ......can't think of the exact name of it right off the bat.

Date Posted: 3/23/2009 1:13 PM ET
Member Since: 12/25/2005
Posts: 1,413
Back To Top

Monica Ferris   has a needlework series

Date Posted: 3/23/2009 2:53 PM ET
Member Since: 4/5/2008
Posts: 2,783
Back To Top

Great Idea Julie! Thanks for making the thread.

I will add more as I get to them.

Joanna Campbell Slan does a scrapbooking theme.

Deb Baker has a doll theme for some of her cozies.

Livia Washburn does culinary mysteries too.

Aaron Elkins does a series on forensic anthropology that are cozies.

Rosemary Harris is a fairly new author but does the gardening theme.  She is up for an Agatha and just made the best sellers list.

Mary Saums has a newer series called Thistle and Twigg mysteries

Simon Brett also has some cozies out, at least a couple of series and some Christmas cozies

Jan Dunlap has a birding mystery out

Jeri Westerson has a mideival series out

Jeff Cohen has a couple of different series out

Clea Simon has a cat theme to her books

Nora Charles has a dog theme in her books

G.M. Malliet has two new cozies out

Mary Ellen Hughes does a craft theme in her books

Jane Cleland has an antiques theme

Nina Wright has a dog series (Whiskey)

Andrea Sisco has her first book A Deadly Habit (cozy with a nun as a main character)

Cathy Pickens does the Southern Fried series.

June Shaw does a canjun series.

LINKS to authors that others have mentioned.

Diane Mott Davidson

Rhys Bowen

Laura Childs

J.B. Stanley

Christine Goff

Maddy Hunter

Jo Dereske

Tim Cockey

Ann Purser

Rita Mae Brown

Joanne Fluke

Karen MacInerney

Monica Ferris

Roberta Isleib

Michele Scott

Sammi Carter

Nancy Atherton

Victoria Thompson

Cleo Coyle

Sheila Connolly

Melinda Wells

Terri Thayer

Jess Lourey

Betty Hechtman 

Rita Lakin

Laura Durham

Patricia Sprinkle

Victoria Houston

Jacqueline Winspear

Carrie Bebris

Charlaine Harris

Philip Craig

Sarah Andrews

Jacqueline (Jaki) Girdner

Mignon F. Ballard

Jill Churchill

Nancy J. Cohen

Denise Swanson

Joanna Carl

Deborah Morgan

Sharon Fiffer

Emilie Richards

Alina Adams

Sarah Shaber

Last Edited on: 4/25/09 10:17 AM ET - Total times edited: 65
Date Posted: 3/23/2009 2:55 PM ET
Member Since: 5/29/2007
Posts: 13,347
Back To Top

I always thought it would be fun to live on or visit Martha's vineyard, so when I saw a series of books called "Marha's Vineyard series" by Philip Craig, I picked up a few.  The slueth is an ex cop, but the theme seems to be (please correct me if I'm wrong, since I've just read a couple and I could be off), but the theme seems to be life on martha's vineyard, and then the murders take place during the normal life activities, like at the opera, etc. 


Date Posted: 3/23/2009 2:57 PM ET
Member Since: 5/29/2007
Posts: 13,347
Back To Top


Last Edited on: 1/14/14 3:19 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/23/2009 3:00 PM ET
Member Since: 5/29/2007
Posts: 13,347
Back To Top

I know there are a number of series where a bed and breakfast is the theme.  I hope we get them all listed here.  One of those is a B&B in Maine, The Gray Whale Inn Mystery series.  I've read 2 of them so far.  The author is Karen MacInerney.


Date Posted: 3/23/2009 3:12 PM ET
Member Since: 8/11/2006
Posts: 6,597
Back To Top

This site lists cozy mysteries according to themes:




Date Posted: 3/23/2009 4:45 PM ET
Member Since: 4/22/2005
Posts: 5,642
Back To Top

Here are few of my favorites that may not be as well known as some of the others mentioned:


J.B. Stanley writes the Collectible series featuring Molly Appleby who writes for Collector's Weekly Magazine.

Deborah Woodworth writes a series based on the Shakers and featuring Sister Rose Callahan. Well written.

Dolores Johnson writes the Mandy Dyer series. She runs a dry cleaning business.

Nageeba Davis wrote several books featuring art teacher/sculptor Maggie Kean

Carole Ann O'Marie writes the Sister Mary Helen series.

Christine Goff does a birdwatcher mystery series.

Jaqueline Girdner writes one featuring Kate Jasper, a quirky series with a lot of New Age/California twists.

Rett McPherson does the Torie O'Shea series and features genealogy.

Barbara Jaye Wilson writes a series featuring hat maker Brenda Midnight.

Mignon F. Ballard does Augustus Goodnight series. She's a guardian angel.

The Grace and Favor series by Jill Churchill takes place during the depression.

Nancy Atherton has a ghost  (Aunt Dimity) that helps Lori Shepard solve mysteries in England.

Tim Cockey's well written series featuring undertaker Hitchcock Sewell is a real hoot.

Nancy J. Cohen writes the Bad Hair Day series featuring beautician Marla Shore.

Jo Dereske does the Miss Zukas, uptight librarian series. Her friend Ruth is hilarous.

Jimmie Ruth Evan does the Trailer Park series.

Helen Chappel wrote a series featuring reporter Hollis Ball and her charming dead husband, ghost Sam Wescott.

Valerie Wolzien wrote two series, I liked the Josie Pidgeon one. It features an all-gril construction crew.

Date Posted: 3/24/2009 8:59 AM ET
Member Since: 4/5/2008
Posts: 2,783
Back To Top

Wow! Thanks Mary and everyone.  I can see my lists getting bigger already

Date Posted: 3/24/2009 1:18 PM ET
Member Since: 9/30/2006
Posts: 7,005
Back To Top

Denise Swanson writes the Scumble River series.  Main character is a school counselor.

JoAnna Carl has another candy-themed series the Chocoholic Mysteries.

Emily Brightwell has so far written 25 books in her "Inspector & Mrs. Jeffries" mysteries. 

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 3/24/2009 2:34 PM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
Back To Top

Kate Kingsbury has one in WWII England called the Manor House series.  She has another older one that takes place in the Pennyfoot Hotel

Peter King has the gourmet detective series

Joan Hess has the Maggody series (Arly is the police chief) and The Claire Malloy series (a bookstore owner)

Lee Harris has the Chris Bennett series.  Chris is a woman who was a nun.  She's left the convent, began sleuthing, met a police detective.  They marry, have a family and meanwhile Chris is still solving minor crimes.  The titles have all been holiday themed, St Patrick's Day, Christening Day, Labor Day, etc.  Not gory, not nasty, a very nice cozy series.


Date Posted: 3/24/2009 3:34 PM ET
Member Since: 8/24/2005
Posts: 504
Back To Top


Earlene Fowler has a long-running quilting series.

Margaret Grace has begun a series about miniatures: dollhouses, furniture, and such.

Parnell Hall has a crossword puzzle series.

Sarah Atwell has started a glass-blowing series.

It's an old series but still one of my favorites: Emma Lathen had a nice series featuring the senior VP of a Wall Street bank.

Date Posted: 3/24/2009 4:31 PM ET
Member Since: 9/23/2006
Posts: 6,362
Back To Top

I'm not sure the Joe Grey books are exactly cozies, although I like them well enough.

Earlene Fowler's books really aren't particularly quilt-related, except for the names.  I know they seem like they should be and maybe the first was a little more in that line but I remember being disappointed because I thought there'd be much more quilt-related detail.  (Of course, sometimes there can be too much of that sort of thing!)

Maggody just never seemed cozy to me, lol.  Maybe it is...? 

I'm trying to think of one - Kathy Hogan Trochek (sp?).  She's writing under a different name now. 

Miss Seeton!

Date Posted: 3/24/2009 7:28 PM ET
Member Since: 5/29/2007
Posts: 13,347
Back To Top

There's a series by Ann Purser and the theme is, as far as I can tell by just reading the titles, is the days of the week.  I picked up Murder on Monday, but haven't read it yet.  There's one book for every day of the week.  http://www.paperbackswap.com/book/author/Ann+Purser

Date Posted: 3/24/2009 7:36 PM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2007
Posts: 5,526
Back To Top

You can also do a search on themes at Stop You're Killing Me

I'm partial to anything having to do with food especially when they give you the recipes!

Date Posted: 3/25/2009 12:04 PM ET
Member Since: 9/23/2006
Posts: 6,362
Back To Top

I really enjoyed Helen Chappell's series.  Don't let the first book put you off. I read a review of it years ago and didn't try the series.  I read the 2nd one first this time and I did see what they meant, but that is gone in the rest of the series.

I have all 5 but haven't quite decided what to do with them since some aren't quite postable by my standards (very minor things).  The main character does drink and smoke (doesn't bother me) but there's a wonderful sense of place and she's an excellent writer.

Date Posted: 3/25/2009 1:01 PM ET
Member Since: 12/9/2006
Posts: 368
Back To Top

This is fun! Cozies are my very favorite - light reading and usually fun! Here are some not yet mentioned:

Dams, Jeanne - retired IN teacher, now living in England

Daheim, Mary- also write the "Alpine....." series featuring smalltown woman newspaper owner in Qregon

Crider, Bill - wrote the following 3 I liked, but I think he has other series as well: Truman Smith - housepainter PI in TX; Dan Rhodes - sheriff in small TX county; Carol Burns - Eng. Prof. - small TX college

Crespi, Camilla Simona Griffe - NYC ad agency worker

Avocaro, Lori - RN turned medical and other PI

Coel, Margaret - Jesuit priest and Arapho woman lawyer in WY

Churchill, Jill - widowed  suburban mom of 3 - Chicago area

Browning, Sinclair (maybe not exactly a cozy) - woman rancher and PI in AZ

Bishop, Claudia - inn owners - upstate NY

Eichler, Selma - plump almost middle-aged, quite short, widowed PI, NYC

Hall, Russ - 70ish retired teacher TX

Fleming, Jean - woman auto claims agent - southern CA

Green, Christine  - Eng. nursing investigator Kate Kinsella

Graves, Sarah - Woman former CPA, now home fixer-upper - Maine

Havill, Steven - set in the boothill and southern part of NM - 1st , Sheriff Bill Gastner & now a Hispanic woman as undersheriff

Haines, Carolyn - a "Daddy's Girl", set in Mississippi

Herndon, Nancy - woman police det. Elaina Jarvis - Los Santos, TX ( really El Paso!)

Jorgensen, Christine - horoscope advisor for lovelorn - Denver

Kahn, Sharon - rabbi's widow, part owner of bagel shop - SW of Austin,TX

Lee, Wendi - ex-marine woman PI in Boston with large extended  Italian family

Martin, Allana - trading post store owner - Big Bend area of TX

Roberts, Lora - woman freelance writer - Bay area CA

Riggs, Cynthia - 92 year old who solves mysteries - Nantucket

Schumacher, Eileen - woman civil engineer and Hispanic det. - set in Las Cruses, NM and El Paso, TX

Sullivan, Winona - nun licensed as  a PI - Dorchester, Mass.

Smith, Martin - Gypsy antique dealer Roman Grey, NJ, NY

Thurlo, Aimee  - cloistered nuns - Bernalillo, NM; one is the nun who leaves to do the necessary errands, etc. rides a motorcycle

Weir, Charlene - widowed small town KS police chief, formerly of CA

MY! I do apologize that this list is so long, but I was trying to select ones that I haven't seen on previous entries, and ones that don't get reviewed or requested much. Can you tell that I thoroughly enjoy my cozies?!!!!    Blessings   M'ann

Last Edited on: 3/25/09 1:07 PM ET - Total times edited: 1