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Lusty Lady

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Tuesday, September 04, 2012

2 cozy mysteries I highly recommend

You may or may not know I'm pretty into cozy mysteries. Here are the 2 latest from series I am obsessed with, and I highly recommend both these mysteries and the series. Both are also on Twitter (@sueannjaffarian and @CleoCoyle) and are awesome.

Hide and Snoop by Sue Ann Jaffarian (Odelia Grey series)
Buy from Amazon, Kindle, Nook or IndieBound (for independent bookstores)

My review:
I've been a dedicated reader of the Odelia Grey series for a few years, so much so that picking up the latest mystery feels like revisiting old friends I haven't seen in a while. This book is my favorite so far, because it shows a lot of character and relationship development for Odelia and Greg when a young child enters their life. The office politics are ratcheted way up, as "corpse magnet" Odelia copes with not having her old boss Steele to, well, boss her around. Instead, she has the ultimate mean girl, who dumps her young niece with a horrified Odelia, but her heart is melted as fast as you can say "Cheesehead Squirrel" (the girl's nickname for Odelia). This is a fast-paced, exciting mystery that kept me guessing, as always, and tugged at my own heartstrings. Odelia is as gutsy, stubborn and outspoken as ever, but she also shows a new side of herself that reminds me why I am a fan of this series in the first place, because it's not just about murders, but about love and family and how far people will go in the name of them (and yes, sometimes that includes murder). An excellent read, and if you're new to the series, you can start with this one, though I'd recommend reading my way through the Odelia Grey series from the beginning.

A Brew to a Kill by Cleo Coyle (coffeeshop mystery series)
Buy from Amazon, Kindle, Nook or IndieBound (for independent bookstores, I'm linking to all Cleo Coyle's titles)

My review:
I'm a relatively new reader of Cleo Coyle's coffeeshop series, but it has everything I like about cozy mysteries: family, romance, small business, food and smart investigation. It also has plenty of coffee trivia and New York City ambience and in this case, food trucks, along with a dose of city politics and rivalry! The Village Blend decides to branch out with a coffee and dessert truck, which causes internal strife before Clare and her ex-husband Matteo, as well as external strife when her rival sees her as stiff competition. When her friend gets run over outside the Village Blend, it gets personal and Clare takes on a new mission to hunt down the hit and run driver, which includes posing as a wedding cake buyer. Once again, this series stays extremely current while also giving us insight into the Village Blend's and New York City's past, and ups the intrigue and personal drama between Clare, Matteo and Clare's partner Mike Quinn, when the three have to share living space. This is a fast-paced mystery with an amateur sleuth who proves she's tough but also has quite a heart, one that foodies especially will enjoy.

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