Alex Erickson: Death by Iced Coffee

Bookstore Café #11

Alex Erickson’s most recent addition to the Bookstore Café Mystery series is Death by Iced Coffee. The story opens with owner of local Death by Coffee shop and amateur ‘just can’t help herself’ sleuth Krissy Hancock taking part in a marathon – during a heat wave. Like any sane person, she is regretting her decision, but, as a woman of integrity, she is determined to keep her promise to her friend Rita and do her part. However, she is surprised to spot Rita’s boyfriend display some rather suspicious behavior before the race even starts. Krissy does not want to jump to any conclusions, but her internal radar is pinged and she intends to look into what he could possibly be up to – but not until after the heat wave marathon of pain. Which is thankfully, but tragically, cut short when Krissy stumbles through the brutal heat and across one of the other runners lying dead on the ground. Despite the mild heat stroke, she is able to take in enough of the scene to decide that this poor man wasn’t a victim of heat stroke but rather of murder. read more

Alex Erickson: Death by Spiced Chai

Alex Erickson’s barista turned part-time sleuth, Krissey Hancock, finds herself the target of a sinister stalker in her newest book Death by Spiced Chai. Everything begins with little incidents such as the sudden appearance of cockroaches, and ominous texts about her local cop boyfriend Paul Daulton. At first, most are easily explained as either accidents or perhaps even as revenge by someone in town who has taken exception to Krissey’s history of being a tad too intrusive in her past investigations. But soon things escalate to accusations from friends and neighbors. Krissey finds her head spinning and anxiety rising as she desperately tries to clear her name left and right. Despite her efforts, things continue to escalate and eventually the police come to accuse her of vandalism of other local establishments, and then even of murder! read more

Cozy round up 2020

“Cozies certainly provide solace from many of the dark edges of the actual world.” — Edith Maxwell in Mystery Scene

I read a lot, and I read lots of cozies, partly thanks to my column in Mystery Scene.  There I am restricted to reviewing mass market paperback originals, and I am generously showered with advance reading copies.  I sort through them by reading the premise and a bit of the beginning.  If the writing doesn’t hit me quite right, I skip that one, and check out another one.  And while I certainly read many, many cozies, I am in no way claiming to have read even a comprehensive number of the books in this sub genre published this year.  For that kind of scope, I highly recommend checking out Dru’s Book Musings, which is a comprehensive review blog of all things cozy.  In addition, Dru has guest posts from authors and publishes a guide to what’s coming out, sometimes weekly. read more