Sunday, September 4, 2011

Who Done It?!

I love mysteries. I love trying to figure them out before the characters do. Although the best mysteries are the ones that have so many surprising twists that you can't figure it out. But you still try.

I also really enjoy cozy mysteries, or whodunits. Yeah, there's a murder. Yes, there's someone watching you. No, everything does not go according to plan. Yes, you most likely will run into danger. But it's presented in such a fun, quirky way that it doesn't seem scary. Not like suspense thrillers.

So here I've gathered the most memorable mysteries that I've read and loved.

Detective mysteries:

Of course, I have to start with Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys. They're good on their own, each with their own set of friends and fathers and local police officers and arch enemies. But they're even better when the three of them (plus usually their aforementioned posses) team up and work on a case together. My personal favorite is A Crime for Christmas. It's actually one of my favorite books of all time. 
And don't forget about the late 70s show starring Pamela Sue Martin, Parker Stevenson, and Shaun Cassidy!
All of the books were written by Carolyn Keene. The Hardy Boys books were published under the pseudonym Franklin W. Dixon.

Another amateur sleuth who has her own book series is Trixie Belden. Along with her best friend Honey Wheeler, Trixie's brothers Mart and Brian, and Honey's adopted brother Jim, they form the Bob-Whites of the Glen, and solve mysteries around their hometown of Sleepyside.
The first six books were written by Julie Campbell Tatham. The other thirty-three were written by multiple ghost writers under the name Kathryn Kenny.

I'm sure you know who Sherlock Holmes is. The brilliant and witty detective and his sidekick Watson solve murders and other crimes in late 1800s/early 1900s London.
Written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

 I've read the Dani Ross Mysteries multiple times. Dani is a private investigator from New Orleans. When her father gets sick, she takes over his private eye business, and hires a new employee, Ben Savage. Together, they face some of the toughest and most dangerous situations Louisianna has to offer in this exciting four book series.
Written by Gilbert Morris.


Here's one you might not have heard of. The Deadly Decor Mysteries trilogy is about Haley Farrell, an interior decorator who always manages to get mixed up in the latest murder investigation. She and Dutch Merrill, a contractor and her biggest annoyance, have to work together to solve these murders before someone gets hurt or the wrong person gets blamed.
Written by Ginny Aiken.

One of my favorite book series ever is The Royal Tunbridge Wells Tea Museum Mysteries. Unfortunately, there are only two books in the series. It's unfortunate because I could read hundreds of books about these characters, they're just so lovable. Nigel, an English businessman who's career goes south and forces him to take a job at the tea museum (even though he finds it boring, and prefers coffee), and Felicity, an American who moved to England just to work at the museum, obviously have differing opinions and personalities. But, of course, they must learn to work together, not just in the museum, but in the investigation of two murders that are tied to the museum in more ways than one.
Written by Ron and Janet Benrey.

In The Book of Hours, a stand-alone novel, Brian Blackstone heads to England to honor his deceased wife's last wish, that he take care of her family's estate. This crumbling castle in a small English village holds secrets, and Brian enlists the help of the local doctor, Cecilia, to help him uncover these secrets. More is hidden there than he knows, and what he finds may be dangerous, to him and others in the town.
Written by Davis Bunn.

Finally there's the Clue books. Yes, like the board game. And the movie. And the card game. These books feature a bunch of short stories, and at the end of each one is a card, just like in the game, with a list of suspects, weapons, and rooms. Your job is to read the story, and deduce who the culprit was, what they used, and where they did it. And some of the stories are outrageously funny and confusing! There's one in which all of the guests are playing practical jokes, so not only do you have to figure out who did what, you have to figure out which one of the murders was the actual murder!! It's super fun, and makes you think.

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