The voting for round two of our Summer Showdown ended yesterday. So, which genre won?

Well, you spent all morning doing a much-needed cleanup of your bookshelves, the books on your TBR mocking you from their places on the shelves because you’d much rather be out in your hammock, enjoying the sun with a good book. Finally, you just broke and decided that you’d done enough tidying. It was time to grab one of those volumes by the covers and read away.

However, before you could even choose a book, the sky cracked open outside and rain started pouring all over that sunny little oasis you’d been eyeing. Not to be dissuaded, because you definitely earned a few hours with your nose in a book, you swipe a novel off the shelf anyway and make a beeline to the rocking chair on your back porch. Sitting there, gazing out at the darkened sky, with the rain keeping a steady rhythm around you, you realize that this is actually the perfect weather to start your new book because you picked a Mystery and something dark and dreary is about to take place.

And what Mystery did you choose? Well, that’s up to you. Here are five options we’ve set aside that we think you should keep in mind.

First up we have Liver Let Die by Liz Lipperman, the first of her Jordan McAllister Mysteries. Jordan works writing personal ads for a small-time newspaper and dreams of one day being a big-name sports columnist. When the local food critic gets sick and needs someone to fill in, she jumps at the opportunity. You’ve got to start somewhere, right? Well, the next thing Jordan knows there’s a dead body underneath her apartment stairwell with her name literally on it (and her phone number—yay). Now she’s the prime suspect, as well as the main course on the murder menu.

Next up is Tempest in the Tea Leaves by Kari Lee Townsend. Sunny Meadows is a psychic who decides she’s tired of life in the Big Apple and so she moves to the quaint town of Divinity, where she hopes to make a living telling the fortunes of the quirky townsfolk there. The action picks up a little too fast for Sunny’s liking when she sits down to do a reading for the local librarian and what she finds at the bottom of the teacup is not what anyone wants to hear… And when her visions come true and the librarian is found dead, Detective Mitch Stone is convinced the fortune sounds more like incrimination than divination.

Our last Mystery on the cozier side of things is A Grave Roast by A.N. Sage. This one centers around Piper Addison, a witch who can’t witch to save her life… which is rather unfortunate when a body is discovered in the alley behind her cafe and all of the evidence points to Piper. It doesn’t help either, that the local sheriff isn’t exactly keen on the more paranormal inhabitants of his town of Orchard Hollow. When a mysterious envelope lands on Piper’s doorstep, she has a decision to make: go behind the sheriff’s back and try to clear her name, or spend her fortieth birthday in a prison cell.

Murder at the Princess’ Palace by Amanda McCabe is next and for this one we’ll have to travel all the way back to 1558. Kate Haywood is the daughter of the chief musician in the employ of Princess Elizabeth during the tumultuous reign of Queen Mary. The princess has been confined to Hatfield House to find solace in the simpler things, but that solace doesn’t stay long when an envoy of the queen is found dead on the grounds. Acting as Elizabeth’s eyes and ears, Kate is sent out on the trail of a killer whose mission could destroy her family, friends—and the future of England.

Finally, the last recommendation we have for you today is The Business of Blood by Kerrigan Byrne. It’s also a Historical Mystery, but one set in 1890 instead. Fiona Mahoney has fallen into the business of cleaning up everything that’s left after dead bodies have been carted away. It’s been two years since she scrubbed away the blood of her childhood best friend, Mary, who was unfortunately the last victim of the infamous Jack the Ripper. When she’s called to a murder in the middle of the night, the crime scene feels eerily familiar. She finds a clue in the blood that she’s certain will help track down who has done this, and though Inspector Croft insists that she doesn’t, she places herself firmly on the case and in the path of the murderer.

So, which case will you be joining in on? We’d love to hear from you down in the comments! And don’t forget, the next round is happening now, so go and vote on Facebook or Instagram through midday on Saturday (7/15)!


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