By Susan Hubbard
Hey, how you doin’?
Today I’m here to tell you about mystery series that have a special je ne sais quoi.
Je ne sais what? Hey, this is Jersey—we’re talkin’ Jersey Edge.
New Jersey—where the surf is high and the politics is low-down. We’re impatient, brutally honest, and, as Jon Stewart points out, we have a severed horse head on our state flag. We’re also tolerant (transgender Albanian Scientologist?—hey, whatever floats your boat); resourceful (a jet just landed in the Hudson river?—guess we better reroute the ferry over there and see what’s up); and epicurean (only turkey on Thanksgiving? Where’s the lasagna?)
And we’re funny. Really funny.
All that fabulousness makes New Jersey the most densely populated state in the Union. But if you’re not lucky enough to live here, you can still experience the Jersey edge through these mysteries:
Chris Grabenstein’s John Ceepak mysteries All the titles come from Boardwalk attractions (Tilt-a-Whirl, Whack-a-Mole) in this charming series that illustrates what the Jersey shore is really like. Guaranteed Snooki-free.
Brad Parks’s Carter Ross mysteries Set on the mean streets of Newark, these mysteries star an investigative reporter who gets to the bottom of Jersey-style corruption and murder with a blend of humor, compassion, and courage. You’ll love the colorful cast of sidekicks only Jersey could produce.
Jeff Cohen/E.J. Cooperman mysteries Jersey born and bred, Jeff/E.J. has written three different humorous mystery series, all set in the not-so-mean suburbs and small towns of the Garden State. All three will keep you guessing—and laughing—right to the final pages. The new Haunted Guesthouse series also adds a supernatural flair. Turns out even dead New Jerseyans have a sense of humor!
Wallace Stroby’s Crissa Stone thrillers Crissa Stone is a professional thief who spends her time with an ill-assorted cast of Jersey grifters and mob thugs. This is hard-boiled, noir writing at its best. Is Jimmy Hoffa buried under Giants Stadium? Crissa probably knows a guy who knows a guy who knows. Fer sure.
S.W. Hubbard’s Audrey Nealon mysteries Okay, it’s not a series yet, but I am hard at work on the sequel to Another Man’s Treasure. As an estate sale organizer, Audrey Nealon treads a line between the wealthy, privileged areas of New Jersey and the grittier milieu of struggling immigrants and troubled street people. In her upcoming adventure, Audrey’s attempts to help a mentally ill hoarder and recover a mistakenly discarded treasure lead her into peril. Click here to read the first chapter of Another Man’s Treasure, or here to sign up for my mailing list to be notified when the sequel is released.