Top 25 Cozy Mystery Books To Activate Your Sleuthing Powers This Weekend

Cozy mystery books to read now scaled

There’s nothing that screams comfort more than being entertained by the escapades of an amateur sleuth. With the attendant inexpert work and the sporadic appearance of feline and canine helps, there’s a reason cozy mystery novels are always so interesting.

If this is your first foray into this sub-genre, let me get you up to speed. Cozy mysteries skirt the line between thriller and crime, and the whodunnit element makes the stakes even higher, while still maintaining its lightheartedness. In short, it’s CSI, but without all the graphic details.

Continue reading to discover some of the best cozy mystery novels out there. I will update this post monthly with any recent reads that stand out to me, so make time to check back often. 

Here are the most interesting cozy mystery novels you should read:

1. Arsenic and Adobo by Mia P. Manansala. 

Arsenic and Adobo by Mia P Manansala

Lila Macapagal moves back home after a brutal breakup and is tasked with saving her aunt’s failing restaurant and dealing with meddling aunties. But things take a dark turn when her ex drops dead moments after they argue, and Lila becomes the prime suspect. 

With the cops against her and a shady landlord trying to evict her family, Lila must investigate on her own with the help of her aunties, best friend, and trusty dog. Best believe that the feline side-kick played his role to the tee. I could be wrong, but cozy mysteries with dogs always feel 100 times more entertaining. 

2. Flight Risk by Cherie Priest.

Flight Risk by Cherie Priest

Leda Foley, a psychic travel agent, agrees to help a man find his missing sister who disappeared with a vintage orange car and a fat sack of cash. Meanwhile, Seattle detective Grady Merritt’s lost dog turns up with a human leg in his mouth, which is linked to Leda’s new case. 

With few leads, Grady and Leda team up, using a combination of unlikely ideas, teamwork, and Klairvoyant Karaoke to solve the tangled mystery. This undeniable treat of a mystery, as described by the New York Times bestselling author Gwenda Bond, is sure to keep you on the edge of your seat.

3. A Killer Sundae by Abby Collette.

A Killer Sundae by Abby Collette

As autumn descends on Chagrin Falls, Ohio, Bronwyn Crewse, the owner of Crewse Creamery, is gearing up for the annual Harvest Time Festival. The festival promises hot-air balloons, hayrides, and delicious treats from Win’s new ice cream truck. 

But things take a dark turn when a festivalgoer is poisoned, and Win becomes a prime suspect. The victim’s bitter attitude leaves no shortage of potential culprits, and Win must use her detective skills to clear her name before winter arrives.

Related: 10 Charming Small Town Romance Books That’ll Warm Your Heart

4. Dial A for Aunties by Jessie Q. Sutanto.

Dial A for Aunties by Jessie Q Sutanto

Meddelin Chan accidentally kills her blind date, leading her meddlesome mother and aunties to dispose of the body. The task becomes difficult when the corpse is shipped in a cake cooler to the over-the-top billionaire wedding they are planning at an island resort on the California coastline. 

The family wedding business won’t let anything get in the way of perfection, not even a dead body. And, as Meddy’s ex-love appears amidst the chaos, she must evade murder charges, win her ex back, and plan a stunning wedding in one weekend. Sounds chaotic? You don’t even know half of it. If an interesting contemporary cozy mystery with drama, laughs, and thrills is on your list, then Dial A for Aunties might just be what you’re looking for. 

5. Mimi Lee Gets a Clue by Jennifer J. Chow. 

Mimi Lee Gets a clue by Jennifer Chow

Mimi Lee’s new pet grooming shop, Hollywoof, is causing quite a stir in Los Angeles. With her talking cat Marshmallow and meddling mother, Mimi has her hands full.

But when a local breeder is murdered, Mimi finds herself on the suspect list, and it’s up to her and Marshmallow to solve the case. With the help of her charming lawyer neighbor Josh, Mimi sets out to clear her name and uncover the truth.

6. Hollywood Homicide by Kellye Garrett.

Hollywood Homicide by Kellye Garrett

Dayna Anderson, a semi-famous black actress, witnesses a hit-and-run and decides to pursue the reward to help her parents keep their home. What begins as a quest for cash quickly turns into a full-blown investigation as Dayna delves into the victim’s life and hunts for the killer. 

Her search leads her to Hollywood’s notorious crime spree, where she investigates paparazzi hotspots, celebrity homes, and movie premieres. Despite the danger, Dayna relishes every moment until someone tries to kill her, and she realizes things are really about to become deadly.

7. Dogged by Death by Laura Scott.

Dogged by death by Laura Scott

Ally Winter is facing a rough time after losing her fiancé, clinic, and savings. Then, she moves back to her hometown to care for her grandfather, only to find a sleazy lawyer murdered, and the only witness is his dog, Roxy. 

Noah Jorgensen, the best detective in town, is on the case, and Ally is forced to team up with him and her crime-aficionado grandpa to solve the mystery. The only catch? Ally and Noah have a history, and her grandpa is more hindrance than a help. This is another enthralling cozy mystery with animals where the feline star takes the lead – in more ways than one, and it’s lovely. 

8. Better Off Wed by Laura Durham. 

Better Off Wed by Laura Durham

Wedding planner Annabelle Archer’s latest success is marred by the murder of a difficult mother-of-the-bride, and the prime suspect is her friend and sometime-business partner, Richard Gerard. With their careers on the line, Annabelle and Richard must find the real killer. 

The victim was one of the most loathed socialites in D.C., but Annabelle bravely navigates the wedding industry and social scene to uncover the truth. As she gets closer to the killer, Annabelle realizes she might be in over her head.

9. Renovated to Death by Frank Anthony Polito. 

Renovated to Death by Frank Anthony

Real-life domestic partners Peter “PJ” Penwell and JP Broadway star in a hit reality show called Domestic Partners, but a suspicious death during their latest renovation project turns it into a real-life mystery.

Crabby neighbors, ex-boyfriends, and reluctant partners make for a long list of suspects. The couple’s sleuthing skills will be put to the test as they work to solve the case and uncover the dark secrets of the Tudor Revival home.

10. Killer Content by Olivia Blacke.

Killer Content by Olivia Blacke

Bayou transplant Odessa Dean navigates life in Brooklyn with the help of a rent-free apartment and a job at Untapped Books & Café. However, things take a dark turn when a fellow waitress’s murder goes viral. She becomes determined to catch the killer and uncover the truth, even if it means taking matters into her own hands – and she soon discovers that she might be in way too over her head. 

11. A Wrench in the Works by Katie Carlisle.

A Wrench in the Works by Katie Carlisle

Chloe, a co-host of a popular home repair show, returns to Lighthouse Cove after ten years to film a new series with her sister Shannon, featuring special segments on Victorian style. However, trouble arises when Chloe’s co-host is stalked by his estranged wife, who also happens to be the executive producer of the show. 

When she’s found dead, Chloe and the crew are under suspicion. And, as Shannon digs deeper, she discovers a ten-year-old secret connected to Erica’s death. All signs point to her sister being the next victim, and it becomes a race against time to prevent her death. 

Related: 12 Witchy Romance Books You Won’t Regret Reading This Weekend

12. Spell Booked by Joyce Lavene.

Spell Booked by Joyce Lavene

In Wilmington, North Carolina, three witches run a curio shop named Smuggler’s Arcane, but as their magical powers fade, retirement is on the horizon. Before they can fly off to Boca Raton, they must give up their magic, recruit and train new witches, and pass on their spellbook. 

However, when Olivia dies and their spell book is stolen, Molly and Elsie must go wand-to-wand with a young, powerful witch to reclaim their spells and honor their friend. In this supernatural cozy mystery, things are not as they seem and Molly and Elise realize that they’re going to have to use more than their magic to succeed. 

13. Devil’s Chew Toy by Rob Osler.

Devil's Chew Toy by Rob Osler

Seattle teacher Hayden McCall wakes up in a stranger’s bed with a shiner and half-naked, only to be questioned by the police about Camilo Rodriguez, a missing Latino dancer. Seeking answers, Hayden teams up with Camilo’s devoted lesbian friends and finds some clues at a pet store and Ryan’s sudden wealth. 

Soon, the trail leads them to an island estate where they discover for themselves the twisted scheme behind Camilo’s disappearance and his family’s fate.

14. Aunt Dimity’s Death by Nancy Atherton.

Aunt Dimity's Death by Nancy Atherton

Lori Shepherd’s life takes an unexpected turn when she discovers that Aunt Dimity, a character from her childhood bedtime stories, was a real person. She inherits a significant estate but must solve a mystery to claim it. A treasure trove of letters in Dimity’s English cottage sets her on a quest. Aunt Dimity’s spirit guides Lori, and she discovers the power of true love in overcoming all obstacles.

15. Grounds for Murder by Tara Lush.

Grounds for Murder by Tara Lush

Barista Lana Lewis faces a latte trouble in Tara Lush’s new Coffee Shop mystery when her best employee quits before the barista championship. When Fabrizio, the arrogant java slinger who left, is found dead the next day, Lana becomes the prime suspect. 

With the help of her hippie dad, a punk rock barista, and a Shih Tzu, Lana sets out to catch the real killer and clear her name. High stakes from the beginning, this contemporary cozy mystery only gets better as the story progresses. You’ll enjoy this if you want a must-read cozy mystery with the characteristic thriller aspects and an endearing storyline. 

16. The Vampire Knitting Club by Nancy Warren.

The Vampire knitting club by Nancy Warren

Lucy Swift seeks refuge in Oxford to ponder her future, but her undead grandmother and knitting shop inheritance throw her for a loop. When she realizes Gran was murdered, Lucy must solve the case without alerting authorities to her grandmother’s undead status. 

With the help of a vampire and a detective inspector, and her trusty cat, Lucy’s life feels more tangled than a cable cardigan. If you love feline companions in cozies, then you’ll definitely gobble this up. This unlikely team has a mission, and they’re bent on discovering the truth about her grandmother’s death. 

17. The Question of the Missing Head by EJ Copperman & Jeff Cohen.

The Question of the Missing Head by EJ Copperman

Samuel Hoenig, a man with Asperger’s Syndrome, uses his unique personality to answer questions for a living. His latest question is an unusual one – who stole a preserved head? But things take a dark turn when Samuel arrives at the scene to find a murder has taken place. With a growing list of suspects and motives, Samuel faces overwhelming odds to uncover the killer. Will his powers of deduction prevail?

18. A Spell for Trouble by Esme Addison.

A Spell For Trouble by Esme Addison

After a long absence, Alexandra Daniels returns to the coastal town of Bellamy Bay to help her estranged family with their herbal apothecary business. But she soon discovers that the town is full of secrets and gossip, including rumors that her family has magical healing abilities. 

When a local is poisoned and her aunt is arrested, Alex is determined to clear her name and uncovers a web of family rivalries and forbidden affairs. But, as the case turns deadly, Alex realizes that some secrets in Bellamy Bay are worth killing for – and she might be a target.

19. Peg And Rose Solve A Murder by Laurien Berenson.

Peg and Rose solve a murder by Laurien Berenson

Rose Donovan and her sister-in-law, Peg, put aside their differences to join a local bridge club. And when one of the club’s top players is murdered, the sisters-in-law become suspects and decide to investigate. Soon enough, they discover a dark underbelly of gambling, cheating, and adultery within the club. 

As their investigation narrows down the suspect list, they realize that they may have missed a crucial detail. Now, they must rely on their newfound teamwork to catch a killer who’s no longer playing games. Honestly, Peg and Rose took their sleuthing to a whole entire level in this contemporary cozy mystery – I know you’ll enjoy it!

20. Claw Enforcement by Sofie Ryan. 

Claw Enforcement by Sofie Ryan

In North Harbor, Maine, Sarah Grayson and her rescue cat Elvis run a charming secondhand shop, where they team up with a group of quirky senior citizens called Charlotte’s Angels to solve crimes old and new.

With the town embroiled in a property development dispute, tensions are high and when a man connected to the quagmire is found dead at a reception, Sarah and her team take on the investigation. With their sleuthing skills and feline intuition, they set about unraveling the secret behind the death. 

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21. To Kill a Mocking Girl by Harper Kincaid. 

To Kill A Mocking Girl by Harper Kincaid

Quinn Victoria Caine returns to her hometown Vienna, Virginia, to start her new life as a bookbinder at her family-owned bookshop. Despite occasional encounters with her ex and former nemesis flaunting their engagement, Quinn is content. However, her peace is shattered when she finds her high school rival Tricia dead on the road. 

Quinn becomes the prime suspect but is determined to find the killer with the help of her cousin-nun and detective best friend. As things escalate and danger looms, Quinn won’t back down until she finds justice for Tricia and clears her name.

22. Farm to Trouble by Amanda Flower.

Farm to Trouble by Amanda Flower

Shiloh Bellamy left her big city job to save her family’s farm in Michigan, turning it into an organic, sustainable operation with a farm-to-table café. But when her investor is found dead, her family is blamed due to a grudge her father held. With the farmhouse falling apart and her cousin’s constant disapproval, Shiloh must clear their name and find the real killer to save her farm dreams. She’ll have to trust her investigation in a small town where rumors spread like wildfire, and every ‘fact’ might prove untrue.

23. Live and Let Chai by Bree Baker.


Everly Swan’s new café on the beach was supposed to be a fresh start, but trouble arrives when a grumpy customer is found dead with one of her tea jars next to him. As accusations and attacks pile up, Everly sets out to clear her name and save her business.

But with a charming detective discouraging her, the odds are stacked against her. Now, Everly is determined to bag the real culprit before her plans for her new café go up in smoke. This contemporary cozy mystery will thrill and delight you – don’t miss it!

24. Sex, Murder, And A Double Latte by Kyra Davis.

Sophie Katz, a tough thriller writer, suspects a reader is sneaking into her apartment to reenact scenes from her books. And, when a filmmaker friend is murdered, she thinks a copycat killer is on the loose and she’s the next target. With the police unable to help, Sophie takes matters into her own hands. With a suspicious love interest and the mark on her back, Sophie has her hands full, but she’s determined to catch the killer before they get to her.

25. A Deadly Bone To Pick by Peggy Rothschild.

A Deadly Bone to pick by Peggy Rothschild

Molly Madison, a former cop and P.I., moves to a tranquil beachside town in California with her loyal golden retriever, Harlow. But, things take a dark turn when Molly finds a severed hand during a beach walk with Noodle, a new furry friend she’s taken on training.

After being falsely accused as a suspect, Molly uses her investigative skills to find the real killer and clear her name. With two loyal pups by her side and a wealth of knowledge in this field, Molly has a good chance, but there’s a mark on her head and she needs to race against time to save herself. 

In this post, I’ve listed some really amazing cozies with different elements – featuring animals, vacation, reluctant sleuth, amongst others– and I just know you’ll love one, or two, or all.

You honestly cannot go wrong with a cozy mystery, and there are just tons of books out there waiting to be read. 

If you want some more recommendations for cozy mysteries to read, check out my post on the best cozy mysteries featuring animals – there are so many good ones on this list. 

And, if you’re in the mood for more, I wrote about the best cozy mysteries written by black people and featuring black and biracial cast.


Hi! I'm Preye ("pre" as in "prepare" and "ye" as in "Kanye"), and I am a lifelong book lover who enjoys talking about books and sharing bits and pieces of all the fascinating things I come across. I love books so much that I decided to become a developmental editor, and right now, I work with authors to help them tell their stories better. On this blog, I share everything from book recommendations to book reviews and writing tips, so feel free to stop by anytime you like!

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