Susan Wittig Albert: The China Bayles Series

Written by Susan Wittig Albert

AMATEUR SLEUTH. Albert writes a traditional/cozy-ish series set in Pecan Springs, a fictional small town in the Texas hill country. China Bayles, her heroine, is a former criminal attorney who decided she’d had enough of the justice system. She now owns a store, Thyme and Seasons, that sells herbs. In addition, as the series goes on, she and her friend Ruby start a tearoom and a catering business. With all this going on, she still can’t seem to stay away from crime, particularly when a friend or family member is involved. The books are written in the first person and China takes the reader into her confidence as she narrates the story so there is plenty of background and you can pretty much pick up the series at any point. They do qualify as cozies, complete with recipes, but China can be gruff and occasionally abrasive. I find her no nonsense attitude wears well and I enjoy the herbal lore that finds its way into the books.

China Bayles
Thyme of Death (1992)
Witches’ Bane
Hangman’s Root
Rosemary Remembered
Rueful Death
Love Lies Bleeding
Chile Death
Lavender Lies
Mistletoe Man
Bloodroot
Indigo Dying
A Dilly of a Death
Dead Man’s Bones
Bleeding Hearts
Spanish Dagger
Nightshade
Wormwood
Holly Blues
Mourning Gloria
Cat’s Claw
Widow’s Tears
Death Comes Quickly
Bittersweet
Blood Orange (2016)

Sandra Jordan