100 books like A Nutcracker Nightmare

By Christina Romeril,

Here are 100 books that A Nutcracker Nightmare fans have personally recommended if you like A Nutcracker Nightmare. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Class Reunions Are Murder

Paula Charles Author Of Hammers And Homicide

From my list on cozy mysteries with strong family ties.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a cozy mystery writer and reader who loves to suss out family dynamics in the books I’m devouring. My love of genealogy and turning family stories into fiction played a large role while writing my first book, Hammers and Homicide. Wherever my husband and I travel, we search for ancestors in ancient cemeteries and try to find out more about their stories. You’ll find a few of them between the pages of my books. I hope you’ll enjoy these books, all featuring some level of family ties, as much as I did! 

Paula's book list on cozy mysteries with strong family ties

Paula Charles Why did Paula love this book?

I can’t even tell you how much I love Aunt Ginny in Libby Klein’s Poppy McAllister Mystery series! She is an absolute hoot. While I love the whole series, the first introduction to Aunt Ginny in this book remains my favorite. 

Poppy is newly widowed and a grief-stricken disaster when she receives an invitation to her high school reunion. She heads home to Cape May and her eccentric Great Aunt Ginny’s house. As they do in cozy mysteries, a murder happens, and Poppy and Aunt Ginny are on the case.

Poppy and her aunt’s relationship, paired with Aunt Ginny’s crazy antics, always leaves me wiping tears of mirth out of my eyes. Such a fun read!

By Libby Klein,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Class Reunions Are Murder as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Fans of Jana DeLeon and Joanne Fluke will love Libby Klein! For fortysomething Poppy McAllister, taking a stroll down memory lane in Cape May, New Jersey, isn't just awkward--it's deadly.
 
Newly widowed and stuck in a middle-aged funk, Poppy has been running on cookies, infomercials, and one-sided chats with her cat for months. There's no way on earth she's attending her twenty-five-year class reunion--especially after receiving a very bizarre letter from Barbie, the popular cheerleader who taunted her all through high school. At least, not until Poppy's best friend practically drags her to the event . . .
 
Using the…


Book cover of Death by Bubble Tea

Paula Charles Author Of Hammers And Homicide

From my list on cozy mysteries with strong family ties.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a cozy mystery writer and reader who loves to suss out family dynamics in the books I’m devouring. My love of genealogy and turning family stories into fiction played a large role while writing my first book, Hammers and Homicide. Wherever my husband and I travel, we search for ancestors in ancient cemeteries and try to find out more about their stories. You’ll find a few of them between the pages of my books. I hope you’ll enjoy these books, all featuring some level of family ties, as much as I did! 

Paula's book list on cozy mysteries with strong family ties

Paula Charles Why did Paula love this book?

In this book by Jennifer J. Chow, I loved how the differences between Yale Yee, the sleuth, and her cousin, Celine, not only created tension throughout the book but ultimately played on each of their strengths to solve the mystery. 

The two cousins are thrown together when quiet Yale is tapped by her dad to run the family bubble tea stand at L.A.’s night market. Loud and flamboyant Celine, a social media influencer, arrives in L.A. and gets tasked with helping Yale out.

Chow does a great job of showing the two girls' very different personalities and adding in that family tension. On top of that, the L.A. night market is fascinating! I hope this will be a long-running series!  

By Jennifer J. Chow,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Death by Bubble Tea as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Two cousins who start a food stall at their local night market get a serving of murder in this first novel of a delicious new cozy mystery series by Jennifer J. Chow, bestselling author of Mimi Lee Gets a Clue.

When Yale Yee discovers her cousin Celine is visiting from Hong Kong, she is obliged to play tour guide to a relative she hasn’t seen in twenty years. Not only that, but her father thinks it’s a wonderful idea for them to bond by running a food stall together at the Eastwood Village Night Market. Yale hasn’t cooked in years,…


Book cover of Murder at an Irish Bakery: An Enchanting Irish Mystery

Paula Charles Author Of Hammers And Homicide

From my list on cozy mysteries with strong family ties.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a cozy mystery writer and reader who loves to suss out family dynamics in the books I’m devouring. My love of genealogy and turning family stories into fiction played a large role while writing my first book, Hammers and Homicide. Wherever my husband and I travel, we search for ancestors in ancient cemeteries and try to find out more about their stories. You’ll find a few of them between the pages of my books. I hope you’ll enjoy these books, all featuring some level of family ties, as much as I did! 

Paula's book list on cozy mysteries with strong family ties

Paula Charles Why did Paula love this book?

Every time a new Irish Village Mystery by Carlene O’Connor comes out, I’m first in line at the bookstore.

I love Garda Siobhan O’Sullivan and her siblings, whom she fondly refers to as the O’Sullivan Six. In this book, the ninth in the series, I was delighted to revisit the village of Kilbane in County Cork as Siobhan and her swoon-worthy husband, Garda Macdera Flannery, follow the clues to catch a murderer who took out one of the contestants of a televised baking show.

The humor in this series always leaves me laughing out loud and ready for another visit with the O’Sullivans.   

By Carlene O'Connor,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Murder at an Irish Bakery as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Hailed as “queen of the cozy police procedural” (Publishers Weekly), USA Today bestselling author Carlene O’Connor returns to County Cork in Ireland’s lush countryside, where locals are simmering with excitement over the reality TV baking contest coming to town —until someone serves up a show-stopping murder that only Garda Siobhan O’Sullivan can solve.


“Distinctive, captivating characters match a gripping plot full of surprises. O’Connor reinforces her place among the top rank of cozy writers.” —Publishers Weekly STARRED REVIEW

In Kilbane, opinions are plentiful and rarely in alignment. But there’s one thing everyone does agree on—the bakery in the old flour…


Book cover of You Can't Candle the Truth

Paula Charles Author Of Hammers And Homicide

From my list on cozy mysteries with strong family ties.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a cozy mystery writer and reader who loves to suss out family dynamics in the books I’m devouring. My love of genealogy and turning family stories into fiction played a large role while writing my first book, Hammers and Homicide. Wherever my husband and I travel, we search for ancestors in ancient cemeteries and try to find out more about their stories. You’ll find a few of them between the pages of my books. I hope you’ll enjoy these books, all featuring some level of family ties, as much as I did! 

Paula's book list on cozy mysteries with strong family ties

Paula Charles Why did Paula love this book?

I adored Sarah E. Burr's book. Hazel and her Aunt Poppy each have their own magical “whim” that has been passed down in their bloodline. 

The characters are perfectly quirky, the setting is quaint, and the mystery has enough twists and turns to leave me satisfied. I loved that the book started out with Hazel and Poppy, but by the end, the family had grown. So, I won’t spoil anything; I’m not going to say more about that! It was a fantastic read, and I’ll be gobbling down the rest of the series. 

Book cover of Twenty Years Later

Steve Rush Author Of Blood Red Deceit

From my list on crime thrillers I've read as a chief forensic investigator.

Why am I passionate about this?

My career path led through tenure as a police detective working multiple death investigations and into forensic medicine, where I worked with the late Dr. Joseph Burton (a person I sensed was the smartest I had ever met) and Dr. Jan Garavaglia of “Dr. G: Medical Examiner” fame. A case of a homeless person’s murder triggered my interest in writing crime thrillers. I was hooked. To date, I have three published novels, received a contract for one, due for release in early 2025, and other manuscripts ready for submission likened to the five novels on my list.

Steve's book list on crime thrillers I've read as a chief forensic investigator

Steve Rush Why did Steve love this book?

"Wow!" becomes an understatement in this story. I enjoyed the challenge this author issued to the investigators called to a murder scene where more than enough DNA evidence to convict the suspect shouts, “Collect me and solve the case.” Not so fast. Twenty years later, the case remains unsolved.

I liked this story’s multiple secrets, but how might Avery Mason, a TV show host in search of a ratings boost, find the killer when the person of interest died in one of the Twin Towers on 9/11? The answer: a twist of fate.

By Charlie Donlea,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

“Excellent…Donlea tells a propulsive tale.” – The New York Times

The New York Times Best Thrillers This Season | E! NewsRecommended Books | OverdriveBiggest Books of the Month

Fans of Verity by Colleen Hoover won’t want to miss this thrilling new suspense novel from the #1 internationally bestselling author of The Girl Who Was Taken! Hiding her own dark past in plain sight, a TV reporter is determined to uncover the truth behind a gruesome murder decades after the investigation was abandoned. But TWENTY YEARS LATER, to understand the present, you need to listen to the past…

Avery Mason, host…


Book cover of This Side of Murder

Joyce Tremel Author Of Death On A Deadline

From my list on historical mysteries with women in non-traditional jobs.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve been fascinated with historical fiction, especially the World War II era, ever since I listened to my mother playing her Big Band Records. I’ve also loved mysteries since I picked up my first Nancy Drew book. Once I discovered historical mysteries, I haven’t been able to separate the two. I’ve recently expanded my interest to include the first world war. There are so many great stories that I’m afraid I’ll never get to read them all. It was really hard to narrow down my list to five books and I hope you’ll love the ones I’ve chosen for you.

Joyce's book list on historical mysteries with women in non-traditional jobs

Joyce Tremel Why did Joyce love this book?

This book is the first in the Verity Kent series set just after World War I in England.

Verity is a war widow and had worked for the Secret Service during the war. After declining an invitation to attend a party on a secluded island, she changes her mind when she receives a letter intimating that her husband had been a traitor. The partygoers are mostly former soldiers who had served under her husband.

This book has it all—a secluded island, many secrets, a storm, and a huge surprise. And I mean huge. Verity doesn’t know who she can trust but somehow manages to figure it all out. I’m way behind on reading this series but I mean to catch up soon!

By Anna Lee Huber,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A WWI widow investigates murder—and her late husband’s secrets—in “this engrossing series launch” by the Daphne Award-winning author (Publishers Weekly).
 
England, 1919. Verity Kent’s grief over the loss of her husband pierces anew when she receives a cryptic letter suggesting her beloved Sidney may have committed treason before his untimely death. Determined to dull her pain with revelry, Verity’s first impulse is to dismiss the claim. But the mystery sender knows too much—including the fact that during the war, Verity worked for the Secret Service, something not even Sidney knew. 
 
Lured to Umbersea Island to attend the engagement party of…


Book cover of The Antique Hunter's Guide to Murder

Kate Hilton Author Of Bury the Lead

From my list on amateur detective novels that keep you laughing while they keep you guessing.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve loved murder mysteries since childhood, and during the pandemic–when reading became a challenge–I returned to my first literary love, binging on one mystery series after another. Eventually, I decided to write one with my friend Elizabeth Renzetti. It’s been the most enjoyable writing experience either of us has had. I’ve written three other published novels, and I have a day job as a therapist (I like to think this helps with realistic characterization, but it also pays the bills). I write humor because I like to have fun at work, and I appreciate a good laugh when I’m reading.

Kate's book list on amateur detective novels that keep you laughing while they keep you guessing

Kate Hilton Why did Kate love this book?

Freya Lockwood is one relatable sleuth–middle-aged, divorced, empty-nesting, and wondering how her dreams for herself have vanished after passing through the meat grinder of adulthood.

I love the themes of estrangement from oneself and others in this debut cozy mystery, as well as the deep dive into the shadowy world of antiques trading from an author with significant personal experience in the field. 

By C. L. Miller,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Antique Hunter's Guide to Murder as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'A bold, bright and delightful jaunt back to the golden age of detective fiction' Janice Hallett

'A delicious read - who could resist a treasure hunt with murder at its core?' SJ Bennett

'It's a delight!' Katie Fforde

What antique would you kill for?
Freya, it's down to you to finish what I started . . .

Freya Lockwood has avoided the quaint English village in which she grew up for the last 20 years. That is until news arrives that Arthur Crockleford, antiques dealer and Freya's estranged mentor, has died . . . and the circumstances seem suspicious.

You…


Book cover of All the Queen's Men

Eric Coulson Author Of The Chrysalis Option

From my list on espionage and intrigue in Great Britain.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been in love with London and the UK since I started reading British thrillers over 40 years ago. When I finally had the chance to live in London as a US diplomat, I was able to see so many of those places that had filled my imagination for years. I have my JD from Southern Illinois University. I have worked for the US Army and the US State Department. I now support my wife Karen, who is a US Diplomat.

Eric's book list on espionage and intrigue in Great Britain

Eric Coulson Why did Eric love this book?

I love this book because it takes you behind the scenes of the Palace and what goes on there.

Located in the very heart of London, I could not get around the city without going by the Palace. This book connects you to what is happening unseen and brings that intrigue home. It really completes the London experience for me.

By SJ Bennett,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked All the Queen's Men as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“Sheer entertainment… Bennett infuses wit and an arch sensibility into her prose… This is not mere froth, it is pure confection.” — New York Times Book Review on The Windsor Knot

Amateur detective Queen Elizabeth II is back in this hugely entertaining follow-up to the bestseller The Windsor Knot, in which Her Majesty must determine how a missing painting is connected to the shocking death of a staff member inside Buckingham Palace.

At Buckingham Palace, the autumn of 2016 presages uncertain times. The Queen must deal with the fallout from the Brexit referendum, a new female prime minister, and a…


Book cover of The Thursday Murder Club

Keith Hartman Author Of The Gumshoe, the Witch, and the Virtual Corpse

From my list on unique settings for a mystery novel.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love mysteries, but I find that after a while, a lot of them tend to run together in my head. So I just love it when I find a book with a setting so unique that it sticks in my mind forever. And it’s even better when the author uses that setting to show me something new about human nature, history, or society while still delivering me a plot that keeps me turning pages.

Keith's book list on unique settings for a mystery novel

Keith Hartman Why did Keith love this book?

This was a book that I picked up because my Mom recommended it. And she struck gold with this one. The book is set in a British retirement community, where a group of old-timers spend their time trying to solve cold cases. But over the course of the book, they get themselves caught up in one very hot case. 

The POV shifts between different characters, who all have interesting voices and skill sets.

By Richard Osman,

Why should I read it?

21 authors picked The Thursday Murder Club as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A New York Times bestseller | Soon to be a major motion picture from Steven Spielberg at Amblin Entertainment

"Witty, endearing and greatly entertaining." -Wall Street Journal

"Don't trust anyone, including the four septuagenarian sleuths in Osman's own laugh-out-loud whodunit." -Parade

Four septuagenarians with a few tricks up their sleeves
A female cop with her first big case
A brutal murder
Welcome to...
THE THURSDAY MURDER CLUB

In a peaceful retirement village, four unlikely friends meet weekly in the Jigsaw Room to discuss unsolved crimes; together they call themselves the Thursday Murder Club.

When a local developer is found dead…


Book cover of Glory Be: A Glory Broussard Mystery

Rob Osler Author Of Devil's Chew Toy

From my list on whodunits with highly entertaining amateur sleuths.

Why am I passionate about this?

My first book love was Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None. The game between author and reader that centers a whodunit has always delighted me. The breadcrumb trail of clues, the misdirection, the inevitable I should have seen it! are my jam. Now an author of whodunits—I have one series published and a second on the way, along with several short stories – I read mysteries with greater scrutiny—in admiration and with a selfish desire to learn from other authors’ envious talents. Each of the books on my list excited me for their excellent storytelling. In the end, I found them just plain entertaining. I hope you do too!

Rob's book list on whodunits with highly entertaining amateur sleuths

Rob Osler Why did Rob love this book?

Up for a small-town Southern church lady amateur sleuth that kicks ass? After reading Danielle Arceneaux’s cozy-defying debut, my answer is yes!

Story hero Glory Broussard is a small-time bookie, loyal friend, exasperating mother, and intrepid detective. I found myself shaking my head, thinking Oh, no she didn’t! And loving her for it! I admire Arceneaux for crafting Glory as a complicated, hilarious, and surprising character—in other words, a stellar protagonist who is utterly and truly unique.

And there’s more. The bayou setting, Glory’s coffee shop hangout, local criminals, and small-town gossipy intrigue all meld into a steamy, irresistible plot I couldn’t get enough of.

By Danielle Arceneaux,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Glory Be as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The first in a vivid and charming crime series set in the Louisiana bayou, introducing the hilariously uncensored amateur sleuth Glory Broussard. Perfect for fans of Richard Osman's Thursday Murder Club.

*A New York Times Book Review Best Crime Novel of the Year*

*A Washington Post Best Mystery Novel of the Year*

It's a hot and sticky Sunday in Lafayette, Louisiana, and Glory has settled into her usual after-church routine, meeting gamblers at the local coffee shop, where she works as a small-time bookie. Sitting at her corner table, Glory hears that her best friend-a nun beloved by the community-has…


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