I don’t know about you but I need some light hearted reading right now, so I turned to my old favourite cosy mysteries. Both of these books were free at the time I brought them but Pancakes and Corpses has gone back up to 99p.
Title: Pancakes and Corpses (Peridale Cosy Cafe Mystery book 1) by Agatha Frost
Date Published: 22nd January 2017
Genre: Cosy Mystery
Soon to be divorced Julia South never expected to be caught up in solving a murder, until she discovered the body of her cafe’s most awkward customer. With a new smug Detective Inspector in town who underestimates her every move, Julia makes it her mission to discover the real murderer, before her village friends are dragged into the frame, and more bodies are discovered.
Book 1 in the Peridale Cafe Mystery series! A light, cozy mystery read with a cat loving and cafe owning female amateur sleuth, in a small village setting with quirky characters. No cliffhanger, swearing, gore or graphic scenes!
I’ve seen Agatha Frost’s books around Amazon for a while now with their cute food themed titles and fabulous covers but never quite got round to actually reading any but I needed a bit of light relief and thought why not? (Plus at the time it was free and I love me a bargain).
Our sleuth Julia moved back home to Peridale after the breakdown of her marriage and set up her life’s dream of owning her own bakery. Disaster strikes when an awkward customer is murdered and the lead suspect is one of her oldest friends. She can’t help investigating and puts herself in danger in the process.
Pancakes and Corpses is a light hearted cosy mystery which was a nice break from reality for a few hours.
It’s got everything you want in a cosy mystery. Delicious sounding food, gossipy village setting and a likeable but nosy amateur sleuth.
My only complaint was some of the more minor characters felt a little bit flat/generic but there is the potential to develop these as the series goes along.
Overall a fun start to the series and one I may carry on with in the future.
Title: Mango Cake and Murder (Mom and Christy’s Cozy Mysteries Book 1) by Christy Murphy
Date Published: 30th September 2016
Genre: Cosy Mystery
What do you get when you combine mango cake, murder, and Mom?
An unlikely recipe for a better life!
When Mom convinces Christy to ditch her “lousy” job and help with the catering business, their fledgling partnership suffers a few setbacks. One of them can’t cook, they’re short a catering van, and the guest of honor at their first party is murdered.That would be bad enough, but then, Christy’s cousin, Celia, becomes the prime suspect.
Solving a murder is no easy task, but when drunken death threats, a dashing detective, and terrifying taxidermy are added into the mix, the case becomes almost impossible to crack. Who knew a small town like Fletcher Canyon could be filled with so much craziness?
Will the disaster-prone duo find the real killer before Celia’s reputation is destroyed, or will Celia end up in prison for murder? Find out in this quick comedy cozy!
This novella is the first book in the Mom and Christy’s Cozy Mysteries series, and is a complete mystery that you can read in an hour or two. It does NOT contain strong language or graphic violence. But it does contain a cute cat!
Christy is newly divorced and living with her mother again. Her mother decides she wants to start a catering business and asks Christy to help. Their first job is catering a party for a crotchety old man who ends up getting murdered. Christy’s cousin falls under suspicion and Christy and her mom decide to investigate.
Until I read this story, I didn’t realise just how many amateur sleuths are a) in their mid to late thirties and b) newly divorced.
Mango cake and murder is a quick and fun read if you’ve got a spare couple of hours.
I have to say I’m still a little wary of when an author fictionalises themselves but it worked okay for this story. There is a bit of a Sherlock/Watson dynamic between Christy and her mother, her mother being the Sherlock in this situation.
I also like the fact that there was some more diversity than usual in this genre with Christy and her family being Filipino.
I think overall the story could have done with a little bit more editing, it suffered from that thing where there was a little too much emphasis on the more trivial things and not quite enough description.
Will I carry on with this series? I don’t know. I don’t think this story was quite strong enough to entice me to get the next in the series but if I see the next on offer I may be tempted into buying it.
What about you? What’s your go to read when you’re stressed?