Favorite Mystery Books of 2014


This was the year of mysteries for me. In the past I never really considered myself a mystery reader at all. I grew up reading my moms suspense novels. And none of them really worked for me. About midway through the year I discovered Abby Cooper, Psychic Eye by Victoria Laurie. This is a paranormal book but still a cozy mystery (at least it’s close enough for me!). I devoured it and wanted more, more, MORE. Then one of my friends recommended the Royal Spyness mysteries by Rhys Bowen. These are historical cozy mysteries but I was completely addicted. I listen to them on audio and they are DIVINE. But soon after I started snagging more of them, eager for more cozy mysteries in my life.

My favorite mysteries of 2014 are (keep in mind that I didn’t start until halfway through the year):

Her Royal Spyness by Rhys Bowen (I’ve listened to quite a few and the first isn’t the best, but I’m listing it since it’s the first in the series). Review

Her Royal SpynessLondon 1932. Narrator Lady Victoria Georgiana Charlotte Eugenie, 34th in line for the throne, is flat broke. She bolted from Scotland — and engagement to Fishface (Prince Stiegfriend) — for London, where she has:

a) built a fire in the hearth
b) fallen for an absolutely unsuitable Irish peer
c) made a few quid housekeeping incognita, and
d) been summoned by the Queen to spy on her playboy son

When an arrogant Frenchman trying to swipe our family estate winds up dead in my bathtub, how can I clear my very long family name?

Abby Cooper, Psychic Eye by Victoria Laurie- This book started it all. I LOVE this series and each book I pick up I devour in a day. I’ve been trying to spread them out to make them last! Review

In Royal Oak, a suburb of Detroit, thirty-something Abby Cooper lives a life that’s kind of like vanilla ice cream – good enough, but a Abby Cooper, Psychic Eyelittle bland. Her work as a P.I. – Psychic Intuitive – can be rewarding, but she feels like somehow she’s missing out on the hot-fudge topping…

Now she’s getting what she wished for – when a client winds up dead and the clues start pointing in Abby’s direction.Turns out she knows too many details about the murder for her own good. To make matters worse, the hot blind date she just met is the lead investigator on the case. And gorgeous Detective Dutch Rivers is convinced she’s a fraud.

No matter how great her psychic abilities, Abby doesn’t know if she can solve this case. Unfortunately for her, though, the killer thinks she can….

Meet Your Baker by Ellie Alexander- I barely squeezed this one in! It JUST released on December 30th, but I HIGHLY recommend. I haven’t reviewed it yet, but it’ll be up very soon! 

MeetYourBakerWelcome to Torte—a friendly, small-town family bake shop where the treats are so good that, sometimes, it’s criminal…

After graduating from culinary school, Juliet Capshaw returns to her quaint hometown of Ashland, Oregon, to heal a broken heart and help her mom at the family bakery. The Oregon Shakespeare Festival is bringing in lots of tourists looking for some crumpets to go with their heroic couplets. But when one of Torte’s customers turns up dead, there’s much ado about murder…

“Sure to satisfy both dedicated foodies and ardent mystery lovers alike.”

–Jessie Crockett, author of Drizzled with Death

The victim is Nancy Hudson, the festival’s newest board member. A modern-day Lady Macbeth, Nancy has given more than a few actors and artists enough reasons to kill her…but still. The silver lining? Jules’s high school sweetheart, Thomas, is the investigator on the case. His flirtations are as delicious as ever, and Jules can’t help but want to have her cake and eat it too. But will she have her just desserts? Murder might be bad for business, but love is the sweetest treat of all…

“Alexander weaves a tasty tale of deceit, family ties, delicious pastries, and murder.” ―Edith Maxwell, author of A Tine to Live, A Tine to Die

Secondhand Spirits by Juliet Blackwell. I listened to this one on audio and the narration is excellent! It’s a fairly dark book for a cozy but it ended up being quite good! Review

Lily Ivory is not your average witch. Her spell-casting powers tend to draw mischievous spirits while keeping normal humans at a distance. But now her vintage clothing Secondhand Spiritsstore could give her a chance to make friends in San Francisco….

Lily hopes for a normal life when she opens Aunt Cora’s Closet. With her magical knack for vintage fashion -she can sense vibrations of the past from clothing and jewelry—her store becomes a big hit.

But when a client is murdered and children start disappearing from the Bay Area, Lily may be the only one who can unravel the crime. She tries to keep her identity a secret while investigating, but it’s not easy—especially under the spells of sexy “mythbuster” Max Carmichael and powerful witch Aidan Rhodes. Will Lily’s witchy ways be forced out of the closet?

Grounds to Kill by Wendy Roberts. This was another I listened to on audio and it was also another with some paranormal themes (though very, very light in this book). Review

Ground to KillBarista Jen Hanby’s coworkers give her a hard time for bringing coffee and pastries to a homeless man who sits outside her café—but she has a secret. The scruffy man is her father.

She’s also hiding the little matter of why her palm itches. But how can she explain that her hand has a mind of its own and writes messages from the beyond? Right. That’ll get her Employee of the Month.

When she finds herself scrawling your boyfriend is cheating on you! to herself on the bathroom mirror, she immediately dumps the guy. But then his little fling—who just happens to be her half sister—turns up dead, and suddenly Jen’s homeless father is the prime suspect.

Jen knows he is being framed and must take matters into her own hands to protect him. But will anyone believe that the crazy old man is innocent? Or that his spirit-writing daughter holds the truth?

Check out my favorite contemporary list for 2014.

Check out my favorite fantasy list for 2014.



  1. These sound like a lot of fun, but while I’m a huge mystery fan, I haven’t read a lot of books of that genre in 2014…hopefully this year will be a bit better. One mystery series I absolutely love is the Heather Wells series by Meg Cabot, but I don’t think it would count as hardcore mystery, since its comedy as well….will hopefully have a better mystery agenda for 2015. Happy new year, Candace!
    Madiha recently posted…2015 TBR + 2014 FavoritesMy Profile

  2. The Cozy Mystery is probably my most beloved of all genres and you’ve got a couple here I have yet to read! Hooray!!! (Although the 2000+ books sitting in my Dropbox right now are probably crying in agony at the thought of me adding more.) I recently read that first Royal Spyness book and then immediately followed it with the first of Carola Dunn’s Daisy Darlymple series. It has much the same feel but in some ways I think I’m going to end up more in love with Daisy. (I reviewed them both. Well, I’m still not sure if I “review” or just “ramble.”)
    karen recently posted…New To You 2015 Reading ChallengeMy Profile

  3. I have Grounds to Kill, and ya know what..I am going to read it for Coyer..it sounds so darn good and if it made your top list it is good enough for me. I am back from my much needed break and hope your holidays were amazing. Happy New Year my friend..here is too finding awesome reads in 2015!

  4. I love the Abby Cooper series! I’m about half way through it and hope to finish it as soon as I get a couple of review books out of the way, it’s just so fun and such a delight to read!

    Based on that, I’m going to have to check out a couple of these other ones I think :)
    Wattle recently posted…Of new beginnings (sort of)My Profile

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