All The Cozy Mystery Goodness

This week, on Instagram, I asked you all to vote on basically a build-your-own group cozy mystery.  I’ve saved it as a story highlight, in case you need to agonize all over again between the Vermont inn or Cotswolds vicarage setting and the toppled bookshelf or cheese knife as the murder weapon, but please ignore that I thought you all had voted for baker over writer and then it was too late to change.
It was fun to think of the cozy cliches for you to debate over and hopefully you weren’t too miserable deciding! Without further ado, here is the too long blurb for our collective cozy mystery:

In the sleepy, mountainside town of Winchester, Vermont, every night and early morning, you can find Jane Littleton concocting scrumptious confections in the warm and homey kitchen of Red Maple Inn. It’s what she always wanted, but it’s lonely, too, especially since the only other person even awake is Tom, who has been working the inn‘s overnight shift since August. He’s always ready to sample her locally famous cinnamon honey scones and, thankfully, seems more than happy to help her pass the time chatting about anything and everything while the treats bake.

Jane is content with her quiet life, but, wondering what else might be in store for her, dreams up Winchester’s first ever annual Food, Foliage, and Firelight Festival. Everyone in town seems to be delighted with the plans.  Even Jane’s quirky neighbor, Mrs. Folger, is in on the fun and has decided to knit the world’s largest tea cozy.  No one knows what’s going under it, but everyone’s too busy with their other plans- apple cider making, syrup sampling, and even barn raising- to notice.
The week before the festival, Jane, exhausted after a long night, is eager to settle in to her favorite hobby of book repair on a couple of first editions in the inn’s library.  Just as she gets comfortable in her favorite fireside armchair with her mending tape and archival glue, she is shocked to see a toppled over bookcase in the games corner. Beneath it is… a pair of slippered feet…and the accompanying dead body, with one hand holding a chess piece knight and the other a note on a ripped book page that reads, “should have kept your nose out”. Who would murder the town’s beloved children’s librarian?  Will the Festival be able to still go on? Will Jane ever notice that the adoration in Tom’s eyes is not just for her scones? After all, sometimes life in a sleepy town is the most exciting of all.
How’d we do?
It was thanks to Berkley publishing that I read my first ever cozy mystery last year and, most recently, was inspired to do this cozy mystery game after reading The Bodies in the Library, which was also gifted to me from Berkley. If you’re a mystery lover, that title is hopefully already making you smile.
The gist:  Hayley is new to her job as the curator of a first editions library and hiding the fact that she hasn’t read any of the Golden Age mysteries. She is determined to bring new ideas to reinvigorate the place, which is also her home, when she comes across…a body in the library.
This read was just so thoroughly SATISFYING. The relationships are compelling, the mystery is fun, the love story is sweet, and the Waitrose references got those crucial food moments in.  I had gone through a bit of a spell of not always wanting to pick up what I was reading, but this book happily ended that and I definitely recommend picking it up for a pick-me-up. Thanks, my cozy mystery friend. You were a good time.
Will you be reading this one? What else should I add to my cozy mystery list?

If you would like to join in on the fun, please go to the submissions page!

*If you are interested in buying any of the books mentioned here, please use my link to Powell’s Books below. Any support is deeply appreciated.

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