If you enjoy cozy mysteries, but are looking for something with a different twist, with a bit of quirkiness, you really need to meet Flavia de Luce, the heroine of a long-running series of books by Alan Bradley. The hook is that the detective is a precocious 11-year old girl with an expert knowledge of chemistry, especially poisons. Set in a post-World War II English village, Flavia lives with her father and a pair of irritating sisters in their ancestral home. Call her inquisitive, or even nosy, but Flavia’s knowledge of her neighbors’ eccentricities comes in handy as dead bodies keep turning up. The books are best read in order, so start with The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie.
“Cozy” mysteries are one of the most popular genres in the Aurora Public Library District. Cozies are perfect for light summer reading and for long, cold winter nights. If you’re not familiar with the cozy genre, these books are the “gentle reads” of the mystery titles – no gore or graphic content. The crime is typically solved by an amateur detective who happens to stumble across a dead body from time to time, and the setting is often a small, quaint village. Each series may have a large number of books; however, even the best of series eventually come to an end. That’s why we’re always on the lookout for new series of Cozies. Here are the newest additions to our cozy collection – the first books in brand-new series.
The Library District has lots of ongoing series of cozies featuring themes like cooking, bookshops, pets, or even chocolate! Just jump in and see which authors you enjoy. There are great resources online about this genre, so don’t forget that we can also borrow from other libraries, if you find a series we don’t have. Here’s a great website to check out if you want to see the amazing variety of books in this gentle category: Cozy Mystery List
Well, I’m inspired to drink a cup of tea now that I know January is National Hot Tea Month!
Turn on the kettle, drop in the tea leaves and settle into one of Laura Childs’ cozy Tea Shop mysteries. The long-running series began with Death by Darjeeling and Gunpowder Green and continues through Broken Bone China, published in 2019.
You’ll also want to check out The Charms of Tea: Reminiscences and Recipes by Victoria magazine. The book includes information about serving tea, suggested menus and recipes, and charming tea passages from literary classics like Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Don’t forget that the library also has copies of Tea Time magazine to turn to for inspiration!
Don’t worry if you’re more of a non-fiction reader! You can learn about how the English managed to smuggle tea out of China in For All the Tea in China by Sarah Rose.
Make sure you include your children and grandchildren in a tea party this month, and share one of these children’s books with them.
Cloud Tea Monkeys by Mal Peet and Elspeth Graham is a short chapter book with the delightful feel of a legend or fable.
Of course, there are also tea-themed books for the very youngest readers.