The best mystery series featuring antique dealers, plus a bonus

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve dealt in antiques my entire life to one degree or another. I'm currently a full time antique dealer, after retiring from owning a florist shop that also sold antiques, books, plants, and giftware. My love for dealing antiques is only matched by my passion for writing, museums, and country living. 


I wrote...

The Art Of The Decoy

By Trish Esden,

Book cover of The Art Of The Decoy

What is my book about?

The Art of the Decoy is the first novel in the Scandal Mountain Antiques Mystery series.

When Vermont antique dealer, Edie Brown, scores a job appraising a waterfowl decoy collection, she’s determined to take advantage of the situation to rebuild her family’s reputation and dwindling coffers. Only the tables turn when the collection vanishes. Accused of the theft, Edie’s terrified the fallout will land her in prison next to her mom. She convinces the client to give her five days to find the decoys before calling the authorities. With the help of her eccentric uncle and an enigmatic employee, Edie risks all to recover the birds before the FBI’s Art Crime Team or the ruthless thieves catch up with her. 

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The books I picked & why

Book cover of A Dream Of Death

Trish Esden Why did I love this book?

A Dream Of Death is the first book in the Kate Hamilton Mystery series.

It is a traditional mystery series featuring an American antique dealer in Scotland. The series has won and been nominated for several awards, and for good reason—namely, all the novels are fabulous.

A Dream Of Death is set on a remote Scottish island. As I read, it felt like I was right there with Kate Hamilton—in the manor house turned hotel, at the Tartan Ball, confronting the quirky local characters…and on the island’s turbulent shoreline that held deeply emotional memories for her.

I especially enjoyed how the exciting mysteries in the present and diary entries from the past meshed together for an exciting and unpredictable climax. 

By Connie Berry,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Dream Of Death as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

On a remote Scottish island, American antiques dealer Kate Hamilton investigates a brutal killing, staged to recreate a centuries-old unsolved murder

Autumn has come and gone on Scotland’s Isle of Glenroth, and the islanders gather for the Tartan Ball, the annual end-of-tourist-season gala. Spirits are high until an unexpected turn of events takes the floor.

A recently published novel about island history has brought hordes of tourists to the small Hebridean resort community. On the guest list is American antiques dealer Kate Hamilton. Kate returns reluctantly to the island where her husband died, determined to repair her relationship with his…


Book cover of Ruby Red Herring: An Avery Ayers Antique Mystery

Trish Esden Why did I love this book?

This is book 1 in the Avery Ayers Antique Mystery series, is a wonderful cozy mystery with a delightful cast of characters, a touch of romance, and unexpected twists and turns that make the book impossible to put down.

I highly recommend it, especially to readers who love mysteries featuring jewels, antiques, and appraising, and heroines who are both smart and struggling to recover from difficulties in their recent past. It was wisely nominated in 2022 for the Mary Higgins Clark Award. 

By Tracy Gardner,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Ruby Red Herring as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A 2022 MARY HIGGINS CLARK AWARD Nominee
 
In this Avery Ayers Antique Mystery series debut, perfect for fans of Ellery Adams and Jane K. Cleland, an antiques appraiser hunts a missing gem while probing her parents' deaths.

After her parents' deaths, Avery Ayers takes over the family business, Antiquities & Artifacts Appraised, from the home office in Lilac Grove and a branch in Manhattan. Now living back at home with her younger sister Tilly and their newly moved-in, eccentric Aunt Midge and her Afghan hound, Avery's life is filled with jewels, tapestries, paintings, and rare finds. But their world is…


Book cover of Dead Men Don't Decorate: An Old Town Antique Mystery #1

Trish Esden Why did I love this book?

The first novel in the Old Town Antiques Mystery series is a cozy mystery with a delightful setting, a bit of romance, and a fifty-something main character who dives in to find a killer after making a late life career change.

When Camille Benson hears an antique shop that previously belonged to her parents is being sold by its unlikable current owner, Roberto, she decides buy the store. But Camille doesn’t even have time to revitalize the business before she discovers Roberto’s dead body, laying in the closed shop.

From there, the mystery takes off with loads of fun characters and enough trouble to make Camille fear she may not be able to untangle it all in time to save the business. 

By Cordy Abbott,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Dead Men Don't Decorate as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Art, murder, and a secret dating back centuries collide in Cordy Abbott’s delightful cozy mystery series debut, perfect for fans of Jane K. Cleland.

Roberto Fratelli, proprietor of the antiques store Waited4You, is the meanest man in Marthasville, Virginia. So when he puts the business up for sale, the other merchants in town are overjoyed. And now the business has a prospective buyer: local resident and the newly elected mayor's mom, Camille Benson, who’s thrilled at the prospect of getting into the antiques business. During a celebration in honor of Camille’s new venture, her best friend, Opal, tells her about…


Book cover of Hidden Treasure

Trish Esden Why did I love this book?

Hidden Treasure is the thirteenth novel in the long-running Josie Prescott Antiques Mysteries series.

This novel is a great addition to the series that features not only an antique dealing main character but shows her business growing and transforming. I specifically enjoyed this novel because the mystery is centered on an older woman who has a zest for life despite her age—and I like how Josie encourages and helps her.

The novel’s fast-paced and twisty, including one particularly surprising and fun detail near the end. I highly recommended this series to lovers of cozy as well as traditional mysteries with an antique dealer as the main character. 

By Jane K. Cleland,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Hidden Treasure as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The discovery of a mysterious antique trunk leads to a disappearance—and murder—in the latest in this beloved cozy series set on the rugged New Hampshire coast, Jane K. Cleland's Hidden Treasure.

When antiques expert Josie Prescott finds a mysterious trunk, no one thinks it could lead to murder. Josie, the owner of Prescott’s Antiques & Auctions, and her new husband, Ty, have finally found their dream home, a Victorian beauty on the beach known in the town of Rocky Point as the “Gingerbread House.” It was recently vacated by Maudie Wilson, an aging widow, whose concerned nieces have moved her…


Book cover of Priceless: How I Went Undercover to Rescue the World's Stolen Treasures

Trish Esden Why did I love this book?

I promised a bonus book. Priceless is not part of a series or even fiction.

It’s a nonfiction book that is perfect for anyone who loves reading mystery series featuring antique dealers as main characters. The author is Robert K. Wittman who was the founder of the FBI’s Art Crime Team. His co-author is John Shiffman who is an award-winning investigative reporter.

I’m not going to say a lot about this book other than that it is fast-paced and fascinating. If you want to take a deep dive into the world of antiques and crime, I highly, highly recommend reading Priceless

By Robert K Wittman, John Shiffman,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Priceless as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Wall Street Journal called him “a living legend.” The London Times dubbed him “the most famous art detective in the world.”
 
In Priceless, Robert K. Wittman, the founder of the FBI’s Art Crime Team, pulls back the curtain on his remarkable career for the first time, offering a real-life international thriller to rival The Thomas Crown Affair.   
 
Rising from humble roots as the son of an antique dealer, Wittman built a twenty-year career that was nothing short of extraordinary. He went undercover, usually unarmed, to catch art thieves, scammers, and black market traders in Paris and Philadelphia, Rio and…


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Legacy of the Witch

By Kirsten Weiss,

Book cover of Legacy of the Witch

Kirsten Weiss Author Of The Mysteries of Tarot: A Work of the Imagination

New book alert!

Why am I passionate about this?

When I joined the Peace Corps in the early nineties, I wasn’t allowed to take much luggage. I decided to bring a Tarot deck, figuring I’d finally have time to learn it while parked in an Estonian forest. That Tarot deck opened up a world of Renaissance mysticism and magic, and I’ve been hooked ever since. Tarot cards and readings feature prominently in many of my cozy mystery novels, not the least of which are the Tea and Tarot mysteries. Now my imaginary Tarot reader from that series, Hyperion Night, has recently written his own Tarot guidebook, The Mysteries of Tarot.

Kirsten's book list on how to read Tarot

What is my book about?

Seeker: As societies grow increasingly fragmented, hopelessness, nihilism, division, and despair are on the rise. But there is another way—a way of mystery and magic, of wholeness and transformation. Do you dare take the first step? Our path is not for the faint-hearted, but for seekers of ancient truths...

Legacy of the Witch is a spellbinding, interactive tale of a woman’s midlife quest to understand the complexities of her own heart. A paranormal women’s fiction murder mystery for anyone who’s wondered if there might be more to their own life than meets the eye…

Legacy of the Witch

By Kirsten Weiss,

What is this book about?

Seeker: As societies grow increasingly fragmented, hopelessness, nihilism, division and despair are on the rise. But there is another way—a way of mystery and magic, of wholeness and transformation. Do you dare take the first step? Our path is not for the faint-hearted, but for seekers of ancient truths.

All April wants is to start over after her husband’s sudden death. She’s conjuring a new path—finally getting her degree and planning her new business in bucolic Pennsylvania Dutch country. Joining an online mystery school seems like harmless fun.

But when a murdered man leaves her a cryptic message, she catches…


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