Friday, February 13, 2015

Romance & Mystery

Tomorrow is Valentine's Day. Personally, I'm not a fan of this particular holiday...although I do appreciate the sale on Valentine's candy that will start on the 15th! That being said, I do like some romance in my mysteries. I guess that's not too surprizing in that I like romance novels as well.

When it comes to mysteries, cozies in particular, romance comes in several forms. One form has our protagonist meet her romantic partner at the start of the series, but circumstances (or their own opinions) keep them apart. This "will they or won't they" is probably my favorite form of mystery romance. Sometimes, this form changes. As the series progresses the couples sometime finally get together, sometimes they even get married. The romance between upper class hotel owner Cecily Sinclair and her butler, Baxter in Edwardian England is my favorite example of this sort of romance and can be found in the Penneyfoot Hotel Mystery series by Kate Kingsbury. Kate Carlisle also gives us a memorable couple with Brooklyn Wainwright and Derek Stone in her Bibliophile series. And I certainly cannot leave out Amelia Peabody and Radcliffe Emerson from Elizabeth Peters' Amelia Peabody Mystery series.

As in life, not all romantic couples in books last. Some series start with one romantic liaison which ends and our heroine finds a new love...or she keeps looking. Carole Nelson Douglas deftly handles this switch in the Midnight Louie Mystery series. Krista Davis explores this form in her Domestic Diva series.

Sometimes our authors give us a variety of possible romantic partners. Juliet Blackwell gives my favorite version of this romantic form in her Witchcraft series...although now I think Lily has found "the one". (He certainly is my pick!) Sometimes, the author has her heroine keep more than one romantic interest at the same time, specifically Joanne Fluke and the Hannah Swensen Mystery series.

While several of these romantic styles eventually lead to marriage, much more rare is the mystery series that starts with our romantic couple already wed. Cate Price has tackled this form in the Deadly Notions Mystery series. Peg Marberg also started her Interior Design Mystery series with a married couple.

What about you? Do you like some romance with your mystery? Do you have a preference as to romantic form? Who are some of your favorite couples?


  1. Interesting post, and thanks for the mention, Kathy. Happy Valentine's Day (even if it's not your thing!)

  2. Thanks! I hope you're having a great day!