What is a Cozy Mystery?

I have a lot of leeway to dwell on stupid things right now, being…I don’t know, like “between sick”?  My throat started to bother me last night.  It’s still bothering me, but apart from that, I feel fine.  It’s not even sore, it feels more irritated.  But what’s super weird is when I open my mouth, like to talk to Spirit, I sound like death warmed over.  You would think I was dying.

I guess if this is as bad as it gets, if I can keep it contained to a little throat irritation, I’ll be happy.

So as I download a million MORE books on my Kindle that I won’t have time for, I wonder what exactly constitutes a cozy mystery.  And why is it called that?  Any book you can curl up and get cozy with.  But a mystery?  Those usually entail murder.  So like, a cozy book revolving around killers and death?  Seems a little at odds with itself, doesn’t it?

But I have figured out a few things they have in common.  Like food.  Holy crap, is it all about the food.  And the authors seriously bend over backwards to invent every possible name for every possible friggin’ pastry…I wonder how many of them are frustrated bakers.  Or are mixing up desserts with sex.  Some of them are too much about the food and not enough about the mystery.

Seem to always be a woman character, too.  Often older.  If there’s any with a guy sleuth, I haven’t found them.  Is this because the author is an older woman?  You’re supposed to write what you know, right?  Are they supposed to give a unique perspective?  Doubt it, cause there are thousands of them baking in itty bitty towns across the country.

Next: not only do the police NOT stop them from what should technically be interfering in an investigation, but often they encourage it.  And not just once, cause a lot of these books are series.  So….murder tends to follow these Murder She Wrote copycats all over the place.  Doesn’t that make anyone suspicious?  Good grief, make these meddling bitches move!

Also, cats are generally involved.  Don’t get me wrong, I love cats.  But in one I read, the cat, and all her kitty friends, solved the mystery, while nudging their human companions to figure it out.  That’s not even a mystery to me….that would fall under paranormal…something?  Animal Farm for the faint hearted, maybe.

Don’t get me wrong.  I do enjoy cozy mysteries once in a while.  They’re a quick read, and some have pretty clever plots.  But they can also be so cliche, or as I mentioned above, so much about the food and the cats, or so desperate to go for witty banter instead of the actual story, they get annoying.  And that’s when I want a good, solid, NOT SO COZY mystery, or maybe some flat-out horror, to take off the sugary edge.

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