I don’t know what it’s like where you are, but here we have just had snow, snow, snow and more snow. And now ice. Everyone is tired of it and I can understand the idea of “March Break”. Many folks will be heading off for a cruise and those of us who aren’t can dream about being on one…. Whether you are reading these mysteries in a deck chair, or your living room chair by the fire, these are fun reads.
Boris Akunin – Murder on the Leviathan. Our Russian detective teams up with French Police Inspector Gauche onboard the Leviathan’s maiden cruise from England to India.
Conrad Allen – a series featuring George Porter Dillman and Genevieve Masefield, two detectives hired by the Cunard Line. All of the series are wonderfully nostalgic and feature some of the great Cunard ships. They make a great detecting couple.
Barbara D’Amato – Catherine “Cat” Marsala, a Chicago sleuth, is aboard a 62 foot yacht on Lake Michigan in Hard Tack. A murder during a sudden storm means that one of the twelve passengers did the deed. By the way, “Cat” can’t swim…
Carolyn Hart – Set Sail for Murder is a mystery cruise with a real murder. Henri O is on a luxurious Baltic cruise with great ports of call. This is a top-notch mystery from a prolific writer.
Sue Henry – Death Takes A Passage. Jessie Arnold has left her sled dogs behind and joined her friend, Alaska State Trooper Alex Jensen on an Inland Passage voyage. This time it’s Alex who is the major sleuth. Could the problems onboard have anything to do with the fact that there are 15 tons of gold in the ship’s hold?
Two anthologies – Murder on Deck, compiled by Rosemary Herbert and Death Cruise, compiled by Lawrence Block. Both contain ship-board stories by the genre’s great writers.
John Dickson Carr – Two sailing stories, Nine – and Death Makes Ten and The Blind Barber. The Blind Barber, with Dr. Fell, is a great combination of mystery and humor.
Ngaio Marsh – Singing in the Shrouds. Some say its Marsh’s best. Nine passengers, including Scotland Yard Inspector Alleyn, are onboard a cargo ship headed for South Africa.
Michael Innes –The Daffodil Affair. The plot is preposterous, the motive strange. It’s weird, even for Innes. Somehow, due to a set of circumstances beyond his control, C.I.D. Inspector Appleby winds up on a ship headed for South America.
Elliot Pattison – Bone Rattler. This is a historical novel featuring Duncan McCallum, a Scottish prisoner being transported to the New World at the time of the French and Indian War. Two murders are committed while at sea and since McCallum is a medical man he is asked by the ship’s captain to investigate. The crimes are unsolved when the ship arrives in America, and he continues to search for the killers on land.