100 books like Fortune and Glory

By Janet Evanovich,

Here are 100 books that Fortune and Glory fans have personally recommended if you like Fortune and Glory. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Thursday Murder Club

Why am I passionate about this?

During a time of turmoil in my life, I discovered the soul-calming world of the cozy when I happened upon the Thrush Green series by Miss Read (Doris Saint). A former fan of thrillers, my time spent in these rural British villages was a revelation. Who knew how peaceful the mundane could be when seasoned with a pinch of humor and common sense? I expanded my reading to include cozy mysteries like the ones I’ve recommended. Having reached the age of many of the ladies in these books, I appreciate even more their determination to continue to make a difference by using their unique experiences and skills.

J.B.'s book list on mature amateur sleuths who use their years of experience and wisdom to help solve crimes with aplomb

J.B. Hawker Why did J.B. love this book?

As a confirmed Anglophile, I became aware of Richard Osman’s wit and unique humor from watching British game shows where he appears as either a panelist or presenter. When I learned he had authored a book, I couldn’t wait to read it and had high expectations. The Thursday Murder Club did not disappoint.

The eclectic group of characters, from the Old Age Pensioners of the retirement village to the detectives they encounter (and frustrate), are engaging and richly developed. Even the evil-doers are written with more than the usual depth.

The plot is rich, with unexpected twists. I love a good, clean mystery that respects both the characters and the readers. Richard Osman has created a delightful series. I can’t wait for his next installment. 

By Richard Osman,

Why should I read it?

24 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 Undertaking Irene

Lois Winston Author Of Guilty as Framed

From my list on cozy & amateur sleuth mysteries when you need a laugh.

Why am I passionate about this?

I started out my writing career in romance and romantic suspense but discovered my humor gene when I wrote my first chick lit novel. Who knew I could write humor? Certainly not me! I bungle every joke I’ve ever tried to tell. But suddenly humor was flowing from my fingertips onto my computer screen. Seeing this new side to my writing, my agent suggested I try my hand at a humorous cozy mystery. Suddenly I found my true calling. I left the world of romance behind and settled into the world of murder and mayhem, complete with a large dollop of laughter.

Lois' book list on cozy & amateur sleuth mysteries when you need a laugh

Lois Winston Why did Lois love this book?

When it comes to absurdist humor, this book is a standout. I couldn’t stop laughing, beginning with the first page. Jane Delaney is known as the Death Diva. Her freelance business provides services that range from scattering loved one’s ashes to tasks that…well, let’s just say she’s got the oddest profession of any amateur sleuth I’ve ever come across, not to mention the most unusual sidekick, a neurotic poodle named Sexy Beast who plays Watson to Jane’s Sherlock. The first-person narrative comes alive with Jane’s delicious self-deprecating sense of humor and makes for the absolute best in escapist reading as Jane takes you on a hilarious journey on the road to whodunnit. 

By Pamela Burford,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Jane Delaney does things her paying customers can’t do, don’t want to do, don’t want to be seen doing, can’t bring themselves to do, and/or don’t want it to be known they’d paid someone to do. To dead people.

Life gets complicated for Jane and her Death Diva business when she’s hired to liberate a gaudy mermaid brooch from the corpse during a wake—on behalf of the rightful owner, supposedly. Well, a girl’s got to make a living, and this assignment pays better than scattering ashes, placing flowers on graves, or bawling her eyes out as a hired mourner. Unfortunately…


Book cover of Lies, Spies, and the Baker's Surprise

Lois Winston Author Of Guilty as Framed

From my list on cozy & amateur sleuth mysteries when you need a laugh.

Why am I passionate about this?

I started out my writing career in romance and romantic suspense but discovered my humor gene when I wrote my first chick lit novel. Who knew I could write humor? Certainly not me! I bungle every joke I’ve ever tried to tell. But suddenly humor was flowing from my fingertips onto my computer screen. Seeing this new side to my writing, my agent suggested I try my hand at a humorous cozy mystery. Suddenly I found my true calling. I left the world of romance behind and settled into the world of murder and mayhem, complete with a large dollop of laughter.

Lois' book list on cozy & amateur sleuth mysteries when you need a laugh

Lois Winston Why did Lois love this book?

Former investigative reporter Rick Atwood is the go-to guy for the chief of police whenever crime strikes Seaside Cove, but Rick’s precocious eleven-year-old daughter is the real star of this series. Alex is a Nancy Drew for the 21st century. Her diary entries put a smile on my face as they brought back memories of my own childhood. Her upstaging of the adults in her life made me chuckle throughout the book. Terry Ambrose is a true master at capturing what it’s like to be a young girl yearning to be taken seriously by the adults in her life, a difficult task for any author but even more so for a male author.

By Terry Ambrose,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Lies, Spies, and the Baker's Surprise as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The wedding of Seaside Cove Bed & Breakfast owner Rick Atwood and Marquetta Weiss is only days away and the B&B is abuzz with excitement. But the mood changes when Rick’s daughter Alex does a little snooping. She overhears Henry Nicholas on his cellphone with his wife, and it’s not Tara, the woman who checked in as Mrs. Nicholas.

When Alex outs Henry at breakfast, Tara explodes. She demands Henry leave immediately. He checks into the town’s motel. But the next morning, Henry is found dead in his room. Rick and Police Chief Adam Cunningham investigate the death, focusing on…


The Flower Queen: A 1970's Suspense Romance

By Kay Freeman,

Book cover of The Flower Queen: A 1970's Suspense Romance

Kay Freeman Author Of Hitman's Honey

New book alert!

Why am I passionate about this?

Author Retired art professor Tequila aficionado Weightlifter Owned by Standard Poodle Blues lover

Kay's 3 favorite reads in 2023

What is my book about?

It began with a dying husband, and it ended in a dynasty.

It took away her husband’s pain on his deathbed, kept her from losing the family farm, gave her the power to build a thriving business, but it’s illegal to grow in every state in the country in 1978.

It even brings her first love from high school back; the only problem is that he works for the FBI. Will their occupations implode their romance, or will the opposite happen?

A second chance at love, opposites attract, rags to riches heroine trope story.

The Flower Queen: A 1970's Suspense Romance

By Kay Freeman,

What is this book about?

It began with a dying husband and it ended in a dynasty.

It took away her husband’s pain on his deathbed, kept her from losing the family farm, gave her the power to build a thriving business, but it’s illegal to grow in every state in the country in 1978. It even brings her first love from high school back; the only problem he works for the FBI. Will their occupations implode their romance or will the opposite happen? A second chance at love, opposites attract , rags to riches heroine trope story.


Book cover of Ask Me No Questions

Lois Winston Author Of Guilty as Framed

From my list on cozy & amateur sleuth mysteries when you need a laugh.

Why am I passionate about this?

I started out my writing career in romance and romantic suspense but discovered my humor gene when I wrote my first chick lit novel. Who knew I could write humor? Certainly not me! I bungle every joke I’ve ever tried to tell. But suddenly humor was flowing from my fingertips onto my computer screen. Seeing this new side to my writing, my agent suggested I try my hand at a humorous cozy mystery. Suddenly I found my true calling. I left the world of romance behind and settled into the world of murder and mayhem, complete with a large dollop of laughter.

Lois' book list on cozy & amateur sleuth mysteries when you need a laugh

Lois Winston Why did Lois love this book?

When twenty-six-year-old Lady Philomena Dunbridge solves a murder that has stymied the police, she scandalizes Edwardian England. Rather than lead a dowager’s life, she escapes to America—and immediately stumbles upon another murder in need of solving. I absolutely love Lady Phil’s unique outlook on life, which had me chuckling from chapter to chapter. The verbal sparring between her and her butler, the detective assigned to the case, and the mysterious Mr. X often made me shout, “You go, girl!” And she not only excels at dropping perfect bon mots, but she goes about unraveling whodunnit with absolute panache.

By Shelley Noble,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Ask Me No Questions as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A modern woman, Lady Dunbridge is not about to let a little thing like the death of her husband ruin her social life. She's ready to take the dazzling world of Gilded Age Manhattan by storm.

From the decadence of high society balls, to the underbelly of Belmont horse racing, romance, murder, and scandals abound. Someone simply must do something. And Lady Dunbridge is happy to oblige.


Book cover of Varina Palladino's Jersey Italian Love Story

Elizabeth Amber Love Author Of Full Body Manslaughter: A Farrah Wethers Mystery

From my list on women starting over.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve spent my life recreating myself as many times as Madonna. If things aren’t working, I move on to something new. I’ll go to classes, learn something else, change careers, and struggle the whole way as I look for pieces of life that fit the puzzle of me. It takes me a lot longer to read so when I try to diversify my bookshelf and don’t always stick to my genre (as the professionals tell an author to do). What I “stick to” is finding female characters who struggle and want to give up, but somehow, something deep inside them makes them move forward one step at a time.

Elizabeth's book list on women starting over

Elizabeth Amber Love Why did Elizabeth love this book?

This isn’t a mystery, but Varina Palladino’s Jersey Italian Love Story instantly became my new favorite book.

First of all, it’s close to home for me. I’m a Jersey Girl and my grandmother married into an Italian family. The food, the colloquialisms, the (loud) holiday feasts – it’s all there.

This book has an interesting presentation as well. Each chapter begins with a few words of Jersey-Italian pidgin, traces the origins from Italian, and gives an example of how to use it properly.

Varina is a grandma who has worked herself to the bone running a gourmet food store even after her husband died. All she wants to do is take the little bit of money she’s managed to save and take one vacation to France. Her mother, her kids, the grandkids – everyone always needs her for something. There is a happy ending and a beautiful epilogue.

By Terri-Lynne DeFino,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Varina Palladino's Jersey Italian Love Story as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Varina Palladino's Jersey Italian Love Story is fun and funny, wonderfully exuberant, and incredibly wise. These endearing characters-their voices and stories- will be with me for a long time to come. I didn't want to say good-bye." -Jill McCorkle, New York Times bestselling author of Hieroglyphics

An utterly delightful and surprising family drama-think Moonstruck and My Big Fat Greek Wedding set in New Jersey-about a boisterous, complicated Italian family determined to help their widowed mother find a new boyfriend.

Lively widow Varina Paladino has lived in the same house in Wyldale, New Jersey, her entire life. The town might be…


Book cover of The Original Adventures of Hank the Cowdog

Emma Kragen Author Of The Twelve Dogs of Christmas

From my list on dog lovers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I love animals, and I always have. I was an only child, but in a house full of animals with two dogs, two cats, fish, birds, and horses. My first words were “doggie” and “kitty” respectively. I work as a filmmaker now, and it seems like sacrilege to say that I only have one cat (and no dogs), but I still ride horses, and hope to expand my personal menagerie in years to come. I am thrilled to recommend my favorite dog books spanning various stages of my life, since these have always been favorites.

Emma's book list on dog lovers

Emma Kragen Why did Emma love this book?

I devoured these books as a kid! My best friend and I played the different characters in the school yard in elementary school.

Such fun depictions of various animal characters, and it’s serialized, so the characters get to live beyond just one book. Any kid who loves dogs or animals will delight in these.

By John R Erickson, Gerald L Holmes (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Original Adventures of Hank the Cowdog as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 9, 10, 11, and 12.

What is this book about?

The popular Hank the Cowdog series is based on the humorous antics of the canine Head of Ranch Security. In this first book, Hank and his little buddy, Drover, set out to solve a series of baffling murders on the ranch. Is Hank a suspect? An Outlaw? Can he clear his good name?


Book cover of Her Royal Spyness

Harini Nagendra Author Of The Bangalore Detectives Club

From my list on historical crime books with spunky women protagonists.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m an ecologist who loves history. I love incorporating elements from the past in my non-fiction and fiction writing. I’ve learnt so much about parts of the world I have never visited from historical mysteries, especially those with strong female characters. My grandmother, born in 1907 during the British Raj, fought just to go to school. I love books that offer an insight into the lives and thoughts of fierce, feisty women like her, everyday women who did extraordinary things. Each of the books I’ve selected is the first in a series, and I hope they give you endless hours of reading pleasure, just as they did for me.

Harini's book list on historical crime books with spunky women protagonists

Harini Nagendra Why did Harini love this book?

Who wouldn’t love a fun book about royals and murder?

Lady Victoria Georgiana Charlotte Eugenie, Georgie for short, is waaay down the line of people to inherit, 34th in the queue, to be precise. And she’s flat broke. Thrown out of the Scotland castle that is her childhood home by her greedy sister-in-law, Georgie cleans homes in secret to earn a bit of money.

Things are just beginning to look up when she finds a dead Frenchman in her bathtub! If being suspected of murder is not enough, she’s also been given a job by the Queen to spy on the playboy Prince of Wales.

Georgie is irrepressible and full of spunk. She’s clumsy, makes mistakes, and fails often, but never gives up. A most relatable heroine.

By Rhys Bowen,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked Her Royal Spyness as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

THE FIRST ROYAL SPYNESS MYSTERY!

The New York Times bestselling author of the Molly Murphy and Constable Evan Evans mysteries turns her attentions to "a feisty new heroine to delight a legion of Anglophile readers."*

London, 1932. Lady Victoria Georgiana Charlotte Eugenie, 34th in line for the English throne, is flat broke. She's bolted Scotland, her greedy brother, and her fish-faced betrothed. London is a place where she'll experience freedom, learn life lessons aplenty, do a bit of spying for HRH-oh, and find a dead Frenchman in her tub. Now her new job is to clear her long family name...


Book cover of The Westing Game

Kate Michaelson Author Of Hidden Rooms

From my list on ill or disabled sleuths.

Why am I passionate about this?

I know all too well that finding a diagnosis and treating a chronic health condition can be like unraveling a mystery—maybe that’s why characters dealing with these issues make natural detectives. As a mystery writer with chronic illness, I love reading about sleuths who embody the difficulties of living with health challenges yet show the tremendous capacity we still have to contribute. Many of the sleuths on this list are confined to their homes and unable to work, so solving a mystery not only adds suspense. It gives us the satisfaction of seeing these characters find their way back into the world and rediscover their sense of purpose.

Kate's book list on ill or disabled sleuths

Kate Michaelson Why did Kate love this book?

One of my favorite characters in this middle-grade mystery has always been Chris Theodorakis, the teen boy with an unnamed neurological condition that confines him to a wheelchair and, for the most part, to his house.

Even if he can’t leave home—and even if people often look away from him when he does—Chris plays a key role in solving the mystery at the heart of the book by being a keen observer of everything that passes in front of his window. I love how this novel depicts Chris’s inner world to young readers, including his awareness of how his condition affects others’ perceptions.

More importantly, it shows how much people with disabilities and illnesses still have to offer. 

By Ellen Raskin,

Why should I read it?

11 authors picked The Westing Game as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 10, 11, 12, and 13.

What is this book about?

A Newbery Medal Winner

"A supersharp mystery...confoundingly clever, and very funny." —Booklist, starred review

 

A bizarre chain of events begins when sixteen unlikely people gather for the reading of Samuel W. Westing’s will. And though no one knows why the eccentric, game-loving millionaire has chosen a virtual stranger—and a possible murderer—to inherit his vast fortune, on things for sure: Sam Westing may be dead…but that won’t stop him from playing one last game!

Winner of the Newbery Medal
Winner of the Boston Globe/Horn Book Award
An ALA Notable Book
 

 

"Great fun for those who enjoy illusion, word play, or sleight…


Book cover of Who Censored Roger Rabbit?

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?

Like a lot of folks, I found out about this book when the movie version came out, Who Framed Roger Rabbit.

The world-building in the movie was so compelling and unique that I decided to pick up the book. And I’m so glad that I did. The plot in the book is much more complicated, and the social satire is even sharper. One of my all-time favorite noir mysteries.

By Gary K Wolf,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Who Censored Roger Rabbit? as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


Book cover of The Reformed Vampire Support Group

Paula Weston Author Of Shadows

From my list on other-worldly creatures roaming around Australia.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m Australian and there’s a big place in my heart for Australian-set stories. I read mostly for escapism, but there’s a deeper connection with tales from my own backyard. I’ve also always loved speculative fiction and I’m excited when my favourite genres and setting come together. I’m the author of five speculative fiction novels with Australian settings: the four novels in The Rephaim series (urban fantasy) and The Undercurrent (slightly futuristic/pre-apocalyptic). With The Rephaim series, I wanted to put angels, half-angels, and demons in a sunny coastal Australia setting, rather than the gloomy European forests we’re mostly used to for those types of stories. It was a lot of fun.

Paula's book list on other-worldly creatures roaming around Australia

Paula Weston Why did Paula love this book?

This witty young adult novel cleverly up-ends the traditional vampire mythology.

These Australian urban vamps are sickly, socially isolated, and barely able to defend themselves. Fifteen-year-old Nina has been a vampire since 1973. She’s part of a group of vamps who meet once a week for therapy sessions to help them refrain from attacking humans.

When one of their members is murdered, they decide to track their enemy, assuming that once the slayer sees how pathetic and harmless they are they’ll be left alone. Ill-equipped for danger, Nina and her fellow vamps stumble into a world of guns, thugs, werewolves, and vicious humans.

This is a fun read, packed with plenty of suspense, a clever plot, and a nice sprinkle of understated romance.

By Catherine Jinks,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Reformed Vampire Support Group as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12, 13, 14, and 15.

What is this book about?

The trouble with being a vampire is . . .
You can't get a decent haircut. You live on guinea-pig blood. And even worse, most of the world's population wants to kill you. For no good reason. Nina Harrison became a vampire in 1973, when she was fifteen. Since then, life's been one big drag - mostly because she spends all her time with a bunch of vampires, in a vampire therapy group.
Then one of them gets staked by an anonymous vampire slayer, and things become even worse: while tracking down the culprit, Nina and her fellow vampires end…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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