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Writers Read Mysteries by Jacqueline Corcoran

Today I’m delighted to welcome Jacqueline Corcoran as today’s Writers Read blogger.  She’s an avid mystery reader and the author of several books.  Here’s what she says about her mysteries:

“My own published mysteries are on the grittier side and feature female protagonists, who are in their early 20’s and are angst-ridden: A Month of Sundays (Whimsical Publications) and Backlit (Etopia Press).  I also have a YA mystery out, Memoir of Death (Etopia Press).”

They sound interesting, don’t they? If you’d like to enter to win an electronic copy of one of Jacqueline Corcoran’s mystery novels (you get to choose), do one or more of the following actions (each action receives one chance; you can receive to 3 chances to win):

*Comment on this post.

*Follow this blog (or mention in your comment that you follow this blog already).

*Tweet this post (with @WriteNowCoach somewhere in the tweet).

The drawing will be held Monday, July 2 at noon and the winner will be announced here (and in the newsletter) on Tuesday. Good luck!

Writers Read Mysteries by Jacqueline Corcoran

Thank you, Rochelle, for allowing me to share my taste in mysteries with your blog readers. I have read almost exclusively in the mystery genre since 1990 so that’s 22 years of reading mysteries. But I was a big fan of mysteries as a child and teen, as well. I read my first Nancy Drew at six years old and my first Agatha Christie at twelve, so I’ve been at this for a long time!

My recommended mystery list ranges from cozies to traditional and to legal thrillers. One element that does unite these mysteries is that they are all part of longstanding series, so I will list them by author. The nice part about my choice of authors is if you like them, you will have lots of great books waiting for you. Just so you know my perspective, I read almost exclusively female authors with female protagonists since I can identify better that way with the main character.

Karin Slaughter is a great storyteller in the Southern tradition, featuring Atlanta and its rural environs. The series revolves around a female doctor but other characters, such as Georgia State agents and a rural police officer, assume leadership roles in some of the books. Karin’s work is not for the faint of heart as her stories can get pretty tough and violent, but her characters are all compelling (everyone has an interesting backstory).

Michael Connolly is the only male on my list. He writes two series I really enjoy: his homicide detective Harry Bosch and the Mickey Haller legal thrillers. Michael is a journalist by trade but knows his procedural details well, and can usually be counted on for an unexpected twist at the end.

Linda Fairstein writes about a Manhattan sexual assault prosecutor who, with her sidekick homicide investigator, investigates murders. In her more recent and longer works, Linda features an aspect of New York City geography or architecture, which allows the reader a more in-depth view into the city’s history. The ongoing and unadmitted crush that the main character has on her sidekick is getting pretty excruciating though!

Perri O’Shaughnessy is a sister team of writers, one of whom is a lawyer, and they can always be relied upon to give a startling twist that involves legal rulings and procedure. The Nevada setting is beautiful, and single-parent mother lead character, Nina Reilly, always has something going on in her love life.

On the cozier side, Leslie Meier features a rural Massachusetts, amateur sleuth, Lucy Stone. I greatly admire Linda’s ability to weave in the details of family and small-town life with a good mystery.

Laura Levine writes comic mysteries featuring junk-food loving Jaine Austen and her cat Prozac who live in Los Angeles. The mysteries are clever, usually feature some aspect of “the biz” and L.A. culture, and some of the humor will have you laughing out loud.

Laurien Berenson might have stopped writing her Melanie Travis cozy series since there hasn’t been one out in a few years, but she has many books to her name. If you are a dog lover, you may enjoy reading about the standard poodles that the main character and her family show. Melanie is a very likeable main character, who, at the start of the series, is raising her child as a single-parent after her husband leaves her. Despite what appears as an initial grim circumstance, Laurien’s books are cute and light, truly in the cozy tradition.

I’m now a reviewer for New Mystery Reader magazine so I’ll be reading what I’m sent through them.  Right now, I’m reading Gone Missing by Linda Castillo for review.

I read too quickly to buy mysteries, and there’s many that I can’t get into and don’t finish. As a result, my books are all from the library. That means I’m pleasantly surprised to find new releases of my favorite series at the different libraries I troll, and tend to read whatever shows up.  But I know Karin Slaughter has a new book, Criminal, and so does Laura Levine, Death of a Neighborhood Witch, so I hope to find those on my library’s New Releases shelf soon.

About the Author: I was born to Irish and Welsh parents in England, but I’ve lived in the U.S. for most of my life–in California, Michigan, Texas, and now in Alexandria, Virginia with my family. I am a social worker, psychotherapist and professor (at Virginia Commonwealth University), as well as an author.  My published work includes eleven textbooks, three non-fiction trade titles, and four novels.  More information is available at




1 Response

  1. Kathy Czarniak

    Although I have followed The Write Now! Coach Blogs for some time, I don’t often comment; however, winning a copy of Corcorans mysteries would be great fun! I am trying to pick different genres to read this summer and since my last read that came close to a mystery was Devil in the White City (although I think it is classified as Historal Fiction?) I am going to pick from this list. I am leaning towards Leslie Meier, or Lucy Stone based on the description – thanks Jacqueline & Rochelle!

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