A couple of months ago, I noted that the Daisy Dalrymple mystery series are “my Cadbury milk chocolate: smooth, sweet and delightfully English.” I still like that metaphor, and it got me thinking about how to classify my other favorite mystery series as different types of chocolate.
So, for your culinary/reading/book-nerd pleasure, a list:
- Dorothy Sayers’ mysteries featuring Lord Peter Wimsey and Harriet Vane are rich dark chocolate: smooth, layered and delightfully complex. (She weaves in history, politics, feminism, culture, mental health – so many subjects.)
- Spencer Quinn’s Chet and Bernie series (narrated by Chet the dog) is a handful of M&Ms: colorful, addictive and so much fun.
- The Maisie Dobbs novels by Jacqueline Winspear remind me of a good chocolate caramel: rich, bittersweet and just slightly salty.
- Tommy & Tuppence, Agatha Christie’s youthful detectives, are those Ghirardelli chocolate squares with mint inside – surprising and fun, and not too complex.
- Miss Marple, that sweet elderly sleuth, and her cases are a truffle assortment – because there are always surprises inside.
- Sherlock Holmes (in all his many iterations) is like an assortment from Burdicks, the gourmet chocolate shop in Harvard Square. These boxes always contain treats I’ve never heard of, made with exotic liqueurs – reminiscent of Holmes’ penchant for unusual cases with highly irregular details.
- Rhys Bowen’s Her Royal Spyness mysteries are Hershey’s kisses: light, sweet and uncomplicated.
- The Flavia de Luce series (pictured above) is a bar of wicked dark chocolate – since Flavia’s twin passions are for sleuthing and poison.
Any mysteries-as-chocolate you’d add to the list?