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Topic: What would you call this type mystery?

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Subject: What would you call this type mystery?
Date Posted: 4/12/2008 3:27 AM ET
Member Since: 10/25/2007
Posts: 3,220
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I like Tony Hillerman, Sue Grafton, Janet Evanovich, and Alexander McCall-Smith as authors. What would you call this type of mystery? I do not think that they could be called cozy. I would not call them chic lit.

Tony Hillerman's mysteries are centered around the west. Sue Grafton starts with A is for Alibi.

Janet Evanovich has the Stephanie Plum series and that is what I am referring to. I am referring to Alexander McCall-Smith's No. 1 Ladies Detective series.

Well though out mysteries, not to much blood and guts, some humor, more of the wry type of humor than anything.

Looking for clues,

Marla Maye

Date Posted: 4/12/2008 9:52 AM ET
Member Since: 12/19/2007
Posts: 2,408
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I think that Hillerman would probably be classified as procedurals because Chee and Leaphorn are police officers but they are not the typical procedural mysteries. I have seen McCall-Smith described as "cozy" though I've never read his stuff. Evanovich is technically probably "humor-thriller"? I have no idea about Grafton as I've not read any of them. One thing is certain though. They are all mysteries!
Date Posted: 4/12/2008 1:47 PM ET
Member Since: 7/14/2007
Posts: 8,942
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I agree with LeeAnne.  I think McCall-Smith's are cozies - but atypical ones since they take place in Africa.  The main character is also a detective, but again, a very atypical one.  I guess on the surface, (private detective protagonist, ongoing series in essentially the same locale) they sound a lot like the Grafton books, but they read like a cozy, and Grafton definitely does not.

Evanovich strikes me as a cross between chick-lit and mystery, and Grafton is kind of a poser.  Maybe "series mystery"?  They have continuing characters and locale, like a cozy, but aren't cozies in any other respect.  Maybe "detective series" or "private-detective series".

Last Edited on: 4/12/08 1:49 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/12/2008 6:05 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I love Alexander McCall Smith.  I guess Cozy would be the mystery category.  To me they're just general fiction.  The mysteries are usually such a minor part of the African and the Scottish series.  They're mostly about the lives of the main characters w/a  little mystery added.  The mysteries are usually non-violent. 

I call the Plum books humorous-chick-lit.  They aren't really cozies because there's usually a dead body or two, explosions etc...,  But they're funny and not really serious enough to be a mystery/thriller. 

I'm new to the whole "cozy" thing-never heard the term before joining PBS-so I could be way off on what makes a cozy a cozy. Although I believe it's a mystery w/o much violence or sex-maybe one murder-w/the actual murder not being described. But most that I've read have centered around a non-violent crime like a jewel or art theft. 

Subject: what is a cozy - answered
Date Posted: 4/22/2008 1:20 AM ET
Member Since: 10/25/2007
Posts: 3,220
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Check out the discussion thread "What is a cozy?" 08/11/07 09:36 am, under Discussion Board, Mystery Thrillers.

There is an excellent answer to this question there.

Marla Maye