In Death series by J.D. Robb

With the recent release of Golden in Death and with some nudging from a friend (B.W.), I decided to read J.D. Robb A.K.A Nora Roberts for the first time. The main character in the In Death series is Eve Dallas, a no nonsense homicide cop in a mid-21st century (2058) New York, where beggars and prostitutes are legal as long as they have the proper licenses. Eve is emotionally closed-off, and lives and breathes her job. In the first book Naked in Death, Eve meets Roarke (just one name like Cher), a suspect in a gruesome murder, and the plot thickens. Roarke and Eve have nothing in common. She lives on a cop salary and prefers candy bars to stopping to eat a meal. He is extremely wealthy and his “auto-chef” (picture a sci-fi slot in the wall that can prepare meals for you) is stocked with only the best. Sparks fly.

I’m on book seven now. The murders are compelling, her few friends and co-workers provide some humor, her love life provides some spice, and her entire sense of self revolves around justice for the victims.

Roberts began writing the “In Death” series in 1995, and some familiar and complicated characters are woven into all the books, including “Golden in Death.” Her intricate character development and powerful storytelling give both longtime fans and newcomers the ability to drop into the series at any point and escape into Eve’s world where the street vendors sell soy dogs and Pepsi comes in recyclable tubes.

And the 50th book proves, this series truly is the gold standard. “Golden” was released on February 4, 2020 and is in the top 5 on the New York Times Bestseller list.

Charley Davidson: A Series

Finally, I’d found a series that I could enjoy and stay entertained with! Darynda Jones‘ Charley Davidson series is the perfect series for romance lovers, mystery lovers, paranormal lovers, and even action lovers! Charley Davidson is the heroine of this beloved series (Of course! It’s named after her!), and she is amazing and kicks butt! Reyes Farrow is her love interest and is drop dead amazing and swoon-worthy! Cookie is her beloved best friend who keeps Charley on her feet! Every character within this series is so amazing and likable that you can’t help but love each and everyone of them, despite their faults!

Private investigator Charlotte Davidson was born with three things: looks; a healthy respect for the male anatomy; and the rather odd job title of grim reaper. Since the age of five, she has been helping the departed solve the mysteries of their deaths so they can cross. Charley’s dealing with a being more powerful – and definitely sexier – than any spectre she’s ever come across before. With the help of a nuisance skip tracer, a dead pubescent gang member named Angel, and a lifetime supply of sarcasm, Charley sets out to solve the highest profile case of the year and discovers that dodging bullets isn’t nearly as dangerous as falling in love. –Goodreads

Darynda Jones makes it her mission in writing to portray Charley as human, even though she’s supernatural, Charley makes mistakes and suffers with the same things that anyone would–all while the dead pass through her! She struggles with her life and everything she goes through in the series, that it’s sometimes hard to read her describe how she feels. Though, Darynda Jones will make anyone laugh! Charley is a hilarious and unique character that stays the same beloved person through the whole series!

If you enjoy Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum Series, then Charley Davidson should be your next series to read! There’s twelve books out and the thirteenth and final book comes out this January! Be on the look out!!!

Look Alive Twenty Five

Stephanie Plum is a bounty hunter with attitude. In Stephanie’s opinion, toxic waste, rabid drivers, armed schizophrenics, and August heat, humidity, and hydrocarbons are all part of the great adventure of living in Jersey. She’s a product of blue-collar Trenton, where “houses and minds are proud to be narrow”, cars are American, windows are clean, and dinner is served at six.

Out of work and out of money, with her Miata repossessed and her refrigerator empty, Stephanie blackmails her bail bondsman cousin, Vinnie, into giving her a try as an apprehension agent. And that’s only the beginning of a series that will set her on the trail of fugitives. Stephanie will have to sharpen her sleuthing skills, because she’s got many a mystery to solve.

Just to complicate things, poor Stephanie has a bad case of the hots for handsome vice cop Joe Morelli, also from the “burg.” As Stephanie puts it, “There are some men who enter a woman’s life and screw it up forever. Joseph Morelli did this to me — not forever, but periodically.”And somehow, Morelli always seems to be involved in Stephanie’s cases. He may be all wrong for her, but what’s a girl to do?

Aiding and abetting Stephanie in her quest to track down and bring back those who have jumped the bond so generously put up by her cousin Vinnie is Ranger, the know-it-all, done-it-all hardcore, hardcase Cuban-American bounty hunter, dangerous dude and love interest #2.

Each book in this series is a whole story with a beginning and an ending, however there may be minor references to events that occurred earlier in the series. Therefore, with respect to the mystery alone, the books can be read out of order, if desired. However, like any long series that focuses on a core group of characters, there are various relationship changes that develop more naturally when the full length novels are read in the order in which they were published.


  • Stephanie Plum series in order by Janet Evanovich
  • One for the Money
  • Two for the Dough
  • Three to Get Deadly
  • Four to Score
  • High Five
  • Hot Six
  • Seven Up
  • Hard Eight
  • Visions of Sugar Plums (between-the-numbers holiday novella)
  • To the Nines
  • Ten Big Ones
  • Eleven on Top
  • Twelve Sharp
  • Plum Lovin’ (between-the-numbers holiday novella)
  • Lean Mean Thirteen
  • Plum Lucky (between-the-numbers holiday novella)
  • Fearless Fourteen
  • Plum Spooky (between-the-numbers novel)
  • Finger Lickin’ Fifteen
  • Sizzling Sixteen
  • Smokin’ Seventeen
  • Explosive Eighteen
  • Notorious Nineteen
  • Takedown Twenty
  • Top Secret Twenty-One
  • Tricky Twenty-Two
  • Turbo Twenty-Three
  • Hardcore Twenty-Four (November 14, 2017)

Mystery Fiction

Mystery Fiction is so broad that it is able to hold many subgenres and also manages to blend in with other genres. Mystery Fiction continues to be extremely popular. The Aurora Public Library District has both Mystery books on its shelves and through the Indiana Digital Download Center available to check out.


Agatha Christie, the Queen of Mystery herself, really shaped the genre into what it is today. She perfected the “fair play” Mystery, where readers are given the same clues as the protagonist to try to figure out the mystery for themselves. Many Mysteries are modeled after Christie’s unique style. Start with The Murder at the Vicarage.

A Cozy Mystery is a subgenre of the Mystery genre that downplays or treats humorously the violence that typically comes with a crime novel. Generally, Cozy Mysteries take place in smaller communities where characters are on a first-name basis with everyone in town. Here are some popular Cozy Mystery authors you can check out from the Aurora Public Library District:


M.C. Beaton is known for two main series starring Agatha Raisin and Hamish Macbeth, respectively. She also styles her books in the manner of “fair play,” or classic “whodunit” Mysteries. Start with Death of a Gossip.


Joanne Fluke is best-known for her Culinary Mysteries, which is a subgenre of the subgenre of Cozy Mysteries. Fluke’s novels feature some kind of food in the title as well as recipes throughout the book. Start with Chocolate Chip Cookie Murder.

Other Cozy Mystery authors include Mary Kay Andrews, Rita Mae (and Sneaky Pie) Brown, Barbara Allan, and Chris Cavender.

Another popular subgenre of Mystery Fiction is the Crime Mystery. This type of Mystery is exactly what it sounds like; the protagonist is usually a detective, or other criminal justice professional, who solves a crime or a series of crimes within the pages of the book. Crime Mysteries usually do not downplay the violence in the way that a Cozy Mystery would. Here are some popular Crime Mystery authors you can look into:


James Lee Burke is also known for two separate series featuring Private Investigator Dave Robicheaux and ex-Texas Ranger Billy Bob Holland. Burke writes “police procedurals,” which are novels about police officers doing police work. Start with The Neon Rain.


Sue Grafton is another popular Crime Mystery writer known for her “Alphabet Mysteries” series featuring Kinsey Millhone. Grafton is known for being one of the first women to enter into the previously predominately male Crime Mystery. Start with A is for Alibi.

Other notable Crime Mystery authors include Janet Evanovich, Harlan Coben, Mary Higgins Clark, Patricia Daniels Cornwell, and Lawrence Block.

Happy Reading!

Bounty Hunters, Detectives and P.I.’s, OH MY!

humor/crimeIf you are searching for a good series to read, don’t overlook the lighter side of the mystery/crime genre. Authors like Janet Evanovich, Darynda Jones and Lee Goldberg know how to write a book with a LAUGH OUT LOUD GUARANTEE !

Stephanie Plum is a bounty hunter from a working-class neighborhood in Trenton, New Jersey, who frequently finds herself on the hunt for low-lifes and barely respectable folk. Her family is a constant annoyance but also anchor her crazy life: a mother who meddles and makes an amazing pot roast, a grandmother who is “two cans short of a six-pack,” and Lula, a reformed ‘ho and Stephanie’s sometimes partner.  With twenty-two books in the series so far, I hope Janet Evanovich never stops writing this hilarious series. Start with One for the Money, hang on and enjoy the ride, be forewarned every character is armed and unbelievably funny!Stephanie Plum Series

Take Stephanie Plum and add a heart of gold, ADHD and the supernatural and you have Charlie Davidson. Charlie has seen ghosts since the day she was born, as she grew-up her cop father realized she could help solve cases (she can ask the “stiff” who killed him). Now Charlie is all grown up and running her own P.I. business, with a caffeine addiction and a wardrobe that consists of t-shirts with sayings like “better to see dead than be dead” and “I’d have a longer attention span if there weren’t so many shiny things”. Lighthearted, nonsensical, silly and sexy. The Charlie Davidson series by Darynda Jones is currently nine books long, Dirt on Ninth Grave was just released, and I got mine that very day!Charley Davidson

Most of us have seen or heard of Monk the television series, but have you read any of the Monk books written by Lee Goldberg? Adrian Monk is an obsessive-compulsive sleuth, these novels are hysterically funny with devilishly clever plots. You’d be hard-pressed to find another series  that provides so many hip and humorous moments.

All three of these outstanding series are available to borrow in print, digitally as an e-book and as an audio book.