Cozy mysteries make murder delicious

Nothing is quite as enjoyable as enjoying a little tea and cake, unless it’s enjoying two new cozy mystery books that feature both tea and cake!

Murder and tea go hand-in-hand in Charleston, S.C., and no one handles both any better than Theodosia Browning and the gang at the Indigo Tea Shop. In “Scones and Bones,” Laura Child’s 12th book in her Tea Shop Mystery series, pirates and pastries meet their match as Theodosia’s sleuthing skills are once again called into action.

A young history intern is murdered and a priceless artifact, a diamond embedded skull cup rumored to have belonged to the famous pirate Blackbeard, is stolen during the Heritage Society’s Pirates and Plunder Party. Heritage Society director Timothy Neville calls upon Theodosia to help solve the crime. As Theo and her faithful tea-master Drayton try to puzzle out who the killer might be, a new man waltzes into Theo’s life, and he just might hold the key to the mystery and possibly to Theo’s heart.

Childs again delights her readers with this fast-paced, lively novel that combines intrigue, a bit of romance, and some of the best tea-inspired recipes to be found. It's fun to catch up with the charming cast of characters who populate this Southern series, and Childs keeps her readers satisfied with creatively presented stories.

Cookies, cake and murder are the name of the game in Joanne Fluke’s latest novel, “Devil’s Food Cake Murder.” In the 14th book in Fluke’s Hannah Swenson Mystery series, readers will find coffee, cake and a spine-tingling mystery are on the menu.

Lake Eden’s favorite baker, Hannah Swenson, is up to her ears in party preparations. Not only does she have her mother’s book signing party to cater, she has been asked to cook up something delicious for the Rev. Bob Knudson and his new wife Clare’s bon voyage party.

The good reverend has brought in his friend, Matthew Walters, to fill in for him while he’s away on his honeymoon, and everything is going well until Matthew is found face-down in a plate of Red Velvet Devil’s and a bullet in the head. Hannah is once again called upon to use her powers of deduction to try to figure out who the killer is, and surprisingly, if the good revered is actually a minister at all.

As Hannah juggles clues, she also is busy juggling the two men in her life — Mike the cop and Norman the dentist — plus baking tons of cookies and cakes for the citizens of Lake Eden, Minn. A girl has got to stay busy, ya know.

Fluke never fails to charm her readership with her light and appealing mysteries, and “Devil’s Food Cake Murder” is no exception. Not only are readers treated to an interesting mystery, they are rewarded with a plethora of mouth-watering cookie and cake recipes that are included in this novel.

Part mystery, part cookbook, all great reading — who could ask for more of a cozy mystery? Check out these two mysteries from two great writers. Your appetite and your bookshelves will love you for it!