While many incredible mystery reads stray into a dark and gritty territory, some readers prefer a gentler touch. Cozy mysteries offer a more lighthearted approach to mystery novels, even if most of them still center around murder. The protagonists of these books are usually women, and their sleuthing is usually a hobby or side gig. Personal interest and drama is more heavily featured in these books, as they tend to try to make the story as accessible and relatable as possible.
The crimes in these novels all tie in to the investigator’s personal experience, whether they have a job as a librarian, chef, dog groomer, etc. The stories almost always take place in a small town, and a cast of quirky characters is guaranteed.
Whether you're new to the cozy scene or you'd just like to dive a bit deeper, here are some great places to start:
Be sure to browse the stories below for our eclectic collection of charming cozy mystery books!
What happens when murder mystery enthusiasts are faced with a real murder?
Thrilling mysteries and lively sleuths bring the heat.
From classically cozy to the criminal underbelly to mysteries that are perfectly in-between—there’s something every mystery lover on this list.
A summer full of sand, suspense, and scandal.
Settle in for must-watch mysteries that are big on heart.
Prepare to enjoy the latest All-Day Breakfast Café Mystery book at your favorite brunch spot.
For those who love a tasty meal with a small side of murder and mystery.
How a haunting crime inspired an author of classic detective fiction.
Her beloved series is coming to an end.
Quirky animal cozies await.
By Orrin Grey
These delightful crossword cozies are packed with word games that you can actually solve!
These gourmand sleuths solve crime—and serve up tasty recommendations.
Her character Blanche White, an African American maid-turned-sleuth, was a favorite among mystery readers.