It’s International Women’s Day, and we’re proud to publish so many strong women and titles featuring inspiring leading ladies! From best friends and mother and daughter sleuthing duos to a fearless traveller and an embattled cop, here’s our pick of fictional heroines who challenge stereotypes, broaden perceptions and showcase women’s capabilities and all-round amazingness. Find your favourite awesome female sleuth below!
What’s your favourite kind of fictional heroine(s)?
A) Intrepid medieval nun-sleuth
B) Strong-willed mother and daughter sleuthing duo
C) Determined cop facing her demons
D) Independent businesswoman
E) Best friends and super stylish Hollywood sleuthing duo
F) Fearless traveller and survivor
If you answered A . . . MURDER AT WHITBY ABBEY by Cassandra Clark
Have you met the indomitable Abbess Hildegard of Meaux yet? This strong-willed and independent sleuth, spy and Cistercian nun is determined to uncover the truth in this gripping medieval mystery. Hildegard of Meaux is despatched to Whitby Abbey in December, 1389, to bid to purchase a priceless holy relic. But before the bidding war can begin, a body is discovered in the monastery’s apple store shed. Something is rotten in the heart of Whitby Abbey – and we’re pretty sure Hildegard won’t rest till she finds out exactly what.
What they said . . . “Excellent . . . a standout in the crowded medieval mystery field” Publishers Weekly Starred Review
If you answered B . . . JOURNALED TO DEATH by Heather Redmond
We fell head over heels for mother and daughter sleuthing duo Mandy and Vellum Meadows in this entertaining, twisty mystery. Single mom extraordinaire Mandy Meadows scrapes by working as a barista and renting her basement apartment to her cousin, Ryan. At night, she and her teenage daughter Vellum run a successful home business creating journaling content on their popular social media channels. But Mandy’s carefully organized world comes crashing down when she finds Ryan dead in the basement. Can Mandy and Vellum clear their names and find Ryan’s killer?
What they said . . . “Will keep cozy fans guessing” Booklist
If you answered C . . . A FULL COLD MOON by Lissa Marie Redmond
Buffalo cop Lauren Riley is a fascinating, determined woman on a mission in this fast-paced police procedural. A man murdered on the streets on the night of a full cold moon triggers memories of a case she was unable to solve, and Lauren is determined not to fail again. But when she becomes involved in a shooting with a suspect, is the case about to be taken out of her hands? If you love strong yet complex, intriguing female protagonists that you can’t resist rooting for, we think you’ll find yourself firmly behind Lauren as she faces her demons and is pushed to her limits.
What they said . . . “A prime character-driven procedural with the added allure of Iceland” Kirkus Reviews
If you answered D . . . THE GARDEN CLUB MURDER by Amy Patricia Meade
Culinary caterer and independent woman Tish Tarragon manages to make running her own business while hunting down a killer seem effortless in this warm and witty cozy, which is full of simmering tensions, tantalising twists and turns, deliciously juicy motives and the most adorable Bichon Frise. Tish pulls out all the stops for her English Secret Garden-themed luncheon for Coleton Creek’s annual garden club awards, but her plans are threatened when one of the prime contenders is murdered. Have the hotly contested awards brought out a murderous streak in one of the green-fingered residents?
What they said . . . “Appealing . . . Cozy fans will have fun” Publishers Weekly
If you answered E . . . SCRIPT FOR SCANDAL by Renee Patrick
This scandalously good mystery follows best friends and glamorous sleuthing duo Lillian Frost and Edith Head as they investigate a behind-the-scenes scandal in 1930s Los Angeles. A new film is about to start shooting – but has the scriptwriter twisted fact with fiction a little too much, particularly when it comes to Lillian’s new beau, LAPD detective Gene Morrow? As well as adding a sprinkle of Hollywood magic to our reading, we are SO envious of Edith’s wardrobe! If you like your heroines feisty, sophisticated and stylish, Lillian and Edith are your new fictional idols.
What they said . . . “Exuberant tale of murder, revenge, and sartorial splendor” Publishers Weekly
If you answered F . . . THE ICE MAIDEN by Sara Sheridan
It’s 1842. What do you do if you’re stranded on an island, destitute and desperate? Stuck on Deception Island in the South Pacific, quick-witted Karina Lande disguises herself as a cabin boy and stows away on a British ship bound for Antarctica. But Karina gets a nasty surprise when she uncovers a shocking betrayal, and with conditions worsening on board, can she survive against all odds? Karina’s story becomes intertwined with some of the 20th century’s bravest Polar explorers in this chillingly absorbing tale which puts a female spin on traditionally male endeavours, and the young yet fearless Karina is our ultimate survivor.
What they said . . . “Sheridan presents a Victorian sailing adventure through time and space, narrated by a woman struggling to find her voice among men” Booklist