Liturgical Mysteries series
by Mark Schweizer
Cozy Mystery

The Alto Wore Tweed
The Baritone Wore Chiffon
The Tenor Wore Tapshoes
The Soprano Wore Falsettos
The Bass Wore Scales
The Mezzo Wore Mink
The Diva Wore Diamonds
The Organist Wore Pumps
The Countertenor Wore Garlic
The Christmas Cantata
The Treble Wore Trouble
The Cantor Wore Crinolines
The Maestro Wore Mohair
The Lyric Wore Lycra
The Choir Director Wore Out: The Final Chapter

This series has a lot of books, I’m now up to book 9. I came across the series on a suggestion from a Yuks Files reader, and will be forever grateful. Police Chief Hayden Konig serves a small town in North Carolina which has a surprisingly large number of murders–hence the 15 books in the series. He is also the local church music director, and a very (hilariously) bad hard-boiled detective story writer. I am not an Episcopalian, or a classical music fan, but that doesn’t stop me from enjoying these wonderful funny mysteries. The typical book has four major aspects, all of which delight individually, and combined make for great reading. There is the mystery, of course, and the unique thing about this series is how late the murder occurs — sometimes a third of the way into the book. There is also local color–scenes from a small town of interesting characters, all fun to observe. Most if not all of the books include an almost slapstick ceremonial disaster or two, such as the burial of a race car driver (still in the car) or doves dive-bombing the congregation for a Pentecost celebration. But my favorite parts are the running hard-boiled detective stories interspersed thoughout. These are written with a liturgical/musical bent (they provide the main title) and hilariously mash up the noire detective with church themes. And to top it all off, the stories are badly written–on purpose–as fans of the Bulwer-Lytton prize will surely appreciate. (Note, if you are not familiar with Bulwer-Lytton, go here now: You will thank me.) I would quote some of my favorites, but you really deserve the pleasure of encountering them in the books. They are laugh-out-loud funny.

I highly recommend this series, once you start you’ll be hooked.

Story 4, Craft 5, Humor 5 — Click title above to see the book on Amazon.