Friday, January 15, 2016

Winter Reads

Winter is a great time to read books.  There is not garden calling for your attention and it gets dark early and a warm wooly blanket, a cracking fire and a cup of tea and you can spend a couple of hours getting lost in a good read.  So here are a few garden theme authors to try out.

China Bayles Mysteries
by Susan Wittig Albert
Set in the Texas town of Pecan Springs, this herbal shop owner China Bayles, escaping the big city, seems to run across dead bodies quite regularly.  Centered around her Herb shop Thyme and Seasons, this small town mystery series includes recipes and herb lore on various themes.  Recent titles include: Bittersweet and Blood Orange

The Brother Cadfael Mysteries
by Ellis Peter
Brother Cadfael is a fictional twelfth-century Welch monk and herbalist, a brother in the monastery of Saints Peter and Paul in Shrewsbury, England.  Cadfael’s adventures are centered on life in the monastery, where he grows herbs and prepares them for their medicinal and culinary uses – as well as using his skills, knowledge and sleuthing talents to solve murder mysteries.  There is also a great companion book, called Brother Cadfael’s Herb Garden: an Illustrated Companion to Medieval Plants and their uses, compiled by Rob Talbot and Robin Whiteman.

The Louise Eldridge Garden Mysteries
by Ann Ripley
Louise Eldridge is an amateur gardener, garden writer, and garden=show host with a penchant for digging up dead bodies.  Ripley’s fictions are filled with sophisticated, reliable gardening advice, arranged in separate essays, throughout the novels.  A few titles: Death of a Garden Pest, The Perennial Killer, Death of a Political Plant.

The Claire Sharples Botanical Mysteries
by Rebecca Trothenberg
Before her death in 1998, Rebecca Rothenberg wrote three mysteries featuring fictional microbiologist and plant pathologist Claire Sharples: The Dandelion Mysteries, The shy Tulip Murders, and the Bulrush Murders.  Lots of interesting botanical details are woven into the plots.

The Celia Grant Mysteries
by John Sherwood
This 10-book series (which ended in the 1990s) featured 50 something British widow and horticulturist Celia Grant.  A few titles: Menacing Groves, Bouquet of Thorns, Sunflower Plot,

One that I am currently enjoying that proves you do not need to be an enthusiast to enjoy a series is the Cat and Quilting Mysteries 
by Leanne Sweeney

Her fictional character a widow, named Jillian Hart lives in Mercy South Carolina and stumbles into mysteries related to cats.  A quilter she is also a cat lover so the cat tidbits she shares are fun and interesting.  Now I do not quilt, I can barely sew, but that does not diminish my enjoyment of these cozy mysteries. The most recent in the Cats in Trouble Series is The Cat, The Sneak and the Secret. 

1 comment:

  1. These series all sound great! I am especially curious about the China Bayles Mysteries. Thank you! -Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures


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