Friday, January 1, 2021

2020 - A Year in Review

By the title of this blog post you may think I've changed from writing about cozy mysteries to horror! 2020, what a year! However, amidst the fear and changes we still had our books to provide comfort and some sense of normalcy in a chaotic year. Some people were able to devote more time for reading, a definite plus, but I am an essential worker so I didn't have extra reading time this year. I managed to read 98 books in 2020. I also developed the Cozy Up With Kathy Party Page, a Facebook group where I held my annual Welcome to Winter Online Book Party. Here is a sampling of some of my favorite reads of 2020.

I was introduced to some new authors this past year and some wonderful series started in 2020. New to me authors include Amy Hueston who brought the Canine Confections Mystery series to the world with PAWS FOR CONCERN, and Adriana Licio who created the Homeswapper Mystery seriesand  THE WATCHMAN OF ROTHENBURG DIES.

Favorite authors came out with new delightful series too. Kate Collins introduced the Goddess of Green St. Mystery series with A STATUE OF LIMITATIONS.  and Amanda Flower created a spin off to one of her many series with the Amish Matchmaker Mystery series and MATCHMAKING CAN BE MURDER. 

Paranormal series are some of my favorite and we had several new ones this year. Melissa Bourbon brought the Book Magic Mystery series, MURDER IN DEVIL'S COVE, Cate Conte introduced the Full Moon Mystery series and WITCH HUNT, A SPELL FOR TROUBLE by Esme Addison is the first in the Enchanted Bay Mystery series and Daryl Wood Gerber debuted her Fairy Garden Mystery series with A SPRINKLING OF MURDER.

THE FATAL FINALE, the first Ella Shane Mystery series by Kathleen Marple Kalb, and MURDER AT MENA HOUSE the first Jane Wunderly Mystery series by Erica Ruth Neubauer are two new historical series by new to me authors. Indeed, it was the historical mysteries that really stood out this year. THE SILVER SHOOTER by Erin Lindsey was fantastic in so many ways, and Dianne Freeman continued the delightful  Countess of Harleigh Mystery series with A LADY'S GUIDE TO MISCHIEF AND MURDER

I was happy to see several favorite series continue with new books, Sarah Fox, Edith Maxwell, Vivien Chien, Tina Kashian, Lena Gregory, and many more. ABIDE BY ME by Jane Willan, OF MASQUES AND MURDER by Maureen Klovers, and THIS MAGICK MARMOT by Sharon Pape, were some of my favorite additions to favorite series. 

While I hesitate to name favorites, as so many mysteries are so good in so many different ways, there was one book that stood out, even among so many wonderful books. I said in my review that it was the best book I read all year, and I will still say that today, DEADLY TRAVEL by Kate Parker was the best book I read in 2020.

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