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All of Cleo Coyle’s Books in Order!
Who is Cleo Coyle?
Cleo Coyle is not one but two persons, as it is the pen name for American mystery writers Alice Alfonsi and her husband Marc Cerasini. Both of them are from an Italian family and grew up in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania. Alice Alfonsi worked as a journalist and book author. Marc Cerasini worked as a magazine editor, literary critic, and fiction and nonfiction author.
Together, they co-author two cozy mystery series, with the Coffeehouse Mysteries the most famous of the two. They also write The Haunted Bookshop Mystery Series, originally under the pen name Alice Kimberly before publishing it under Cleo Coyle.
How to read Cleo Coyle’s Books in Order?
The Coffeehouse Mystery Series
The Coffeehouse Mystery Series is set in and around the Village Blend, a fictional coffeehouse in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of New York City. Clare Cosi is the manager of this landmark coffeehouse, a divorcee with one adult daughter who has the little habit of getting mixed up in murder. For more details, go to The Coffeehouse Mystery Series reading order.
- On What Grounds (2003)
- Through the Grinder (2004)
- Latte Trouble (2005)
- Murder Most Frothy (2006)
- Decaffeinated Corpse (2007)
- French Pressed (2008)
- Espresso Shot (2008)
- Holiday Grind (2009)
- Roast Mortem (2010)
- Murder by Mocha (2011)
- A Brew to a Kill (2012)
- Holiday Buzz (2012)
- Billionaire Blend (2013)
- Once Upon a Grind (2014)
- Dead to the Last Drop (2015)
- Dead Cold Brew (2017)
- Shot In the Dark (2018)
- Brewed Awakening (2019)
- Honey Roasted (2022)
The Haunted Bookshop Mystery Series
- The Ghost and Mrs. McClure (2004) — Young widow Penelope Thornton-McClure and her old Aunt Sadie are making ends meet by managing a mystery book shop—a quaint Rhode Island landmark rumored to be haunted. Pen may not believe in ghosts, but she believe in good publicity—like nabbing Timothy Brennan for a book signing. But soon after the bestselling thriller writer reveals a secret about the store’s link to a 1940s murder, he keels over dead—and right in the middle of the store’s new Community Events space. Who gives Mrs. McClure the first clue that it was murder? The bookstore’s full-time ghost—a PI murdered on the very spot more than fifty years ago. Is he a figment of Pen’s overactive imagination? Or is the oddly likable fedora-wearing specter the only hope Pen has to solve the crime? You can bet your everlasting life on it…
- The Ghost and the Dead Deb (2005) — The only rule bookshop owner and widow Penelope Thornton-McClure has given ghostly hard boiled P.I. Jack Shepard is to not haunt the customers. But when hot, young author Angel Stark arrives at the store to promote her latest, a true crime novel, Jack can hardly contain himself. After all, this is his specialty! Angel’s book is an unsolved mystery about a debutante found strangled to death. And it’s filled with juicy details that point a finger at a number of people in the deb’s high society circle. But when the author winds up dead too—in precisely the same way—Pen is fast on the case…which means Jack is too. After all, a ghost detective never rests in peace.
- The Ghost and the Dead Man’s Library (2006) — Pen has just received an extremely rare collection of Edgar Allan Poe’s complete works. Rumor has it a secret code, trapped within the books’ leather-bound pages, leads to buried treasure. Well, it looks like they got the part right—because, as Pen sells off the valuable volumes, everyone who buys…dies. Once these books go missing from their owners’ cold hands, Pen will need resident ghost and hard-boiled P.I. Jack Shepard to help crack the case. The police are skeptical that the deaths involved foul play—so it’s up to them to unravel these shocking endings…
- The Ghost and the Femme Fatale (2008) — The Movie Town Theater is holding its first ever Film Noir Festival, with Pen handling book sales for the guest speakers, including screen actress Hedda Geist. The legendary femme fatale has been out of the spotlight for decades. Unfortunately, the moment she steps back into it, she’s nearly killed. Then other guests start to die, and Penelope wants to know why her little town’s Film Noir weekend has taken a truly dark turn. With local police on the wrong track, Penelope enlists the help of Jack Shepard, P.I. Okay, so Jack hasn’t had a heartbeat since 1949, when he was gunned down in what is now Pen’s store. But the hard-boiled ghost actually remembers Hedda’s dark past and Penelope’s sure he can help solve this case—even if he and his license did expire more than fifty years ago…
- The Ghost and the Haunted Mansion (2008) — Bookshop owner Penelope Thornton-McClure didn’t believe in ghosts—until she met the spirit of hard-boiled 1940s detective Jack Shepard. And when Pen’s friend and mailman, Seymour Tarnish, gets into deep trouble, Pen not only believes in her ghost—she also thinks he can help… An elderly lady of leisure has been found dead on posh Larchmont Avenue, her will recently, and suspiciously, revised to name Seymour as heir to her mansion. Just as eyes turn to him as the murderer—and Seymour gets busy settling into his ritzy digs—the mansion’s ghosts begin plaguing him. So he hires a team of parapsychologists to exorcise all the spirits from the town of Quindicott—and that includes Jack Shepard. Now Pen must act fast—because losing Jack scares Pen more than rattling chains and cold spots…
- The Ghost and the Bogus Bestseller (2018) — Bookshop owner Penelope Thornton-McClure didn’t believe in ghosts, until she was haunted by the hard-boiled spirit of 1940s private investigator Jack Shepard. Now Jack is back on the job, and Pen is eternally grateful… After an elegant new customer has a breakdown in her shop, Penelope suspects there is something bogus behind the biggest bestseller of the year. This popular potboiler is so hot that folks in her tiny Rhode Island town are dying to read it–literally. First one customer turns up dead, followed by another mysterious fatality connected to the book, which Pen discovers is more than just fiction. Now, with the help of her gumshoe ghost, Pen must solve the real-life cold case behind the bogus bestseller before the killer closes the book on her.
- The Ghost and the Haunted Portrait (2021) — While gathering a collection of vintage book cover paintings for a special event in her quaint Rhode Island bookshop, Penelope discovers a spooky portrait of a beautiful woman, one who supposedly went mad, according to town gossip. Seymour, the local mailman, falls in love with the haunting image and buys the picture, refusing to part with it, even as fatal accidents befall those around it. Is the canvas cursed? Or is something more sinister at work? For answers, Pen turns to an otherworldly source: Jack Shepard, PI. Back in the 1940s, Jack cracked a case of a killer cover artist, and (to Pen’s relief) his spirit is willing to help her solve this mystery, even if he and his license did expire decades ago.
- The Ghost and the Stolen Tears (2022) — Norma is a modern-day nomad. Living out of her van and teardrop trailer, she revels in self-reliance, solitude, and reading in the glorious peace of nature. Jovial, wise, and scrupulously honest, she’s become an uplifting presence in the little town of Quindicott, Rhode Island, where bookseller Pen is thankful to have her part-time help. But it’s Norma’s other job, working as a housekeeper at the Finch Inn, that gets her into terrible trouble. Norma is accused of stealing jewels from a guest’s room: the legendary Valentino Teardrops, an antique necklace and earring set, inherited by a young socialite. Pen doesn’t believe Norma is guilty of the crime—though the evidence is distressingly strong. And when the spirited Norma vanishes before her arrest, Pen turns to another spirit… Jack Shepard, PI, may have been gunned down decades ago, but his memory hasn’t been ghosted. Back in the 1940s, those same Valentino Teardrops starred in a bizarre case of betrayal and murder. From the look of things, history is about to repeat. Now Jack is back on the job, and Pen is eternally grateful.
- The Ghost Goes to the Dogs (2023) – Pet Mystery Week brings brisk business to Penelope’s Rhode Island bookshop, but a real mystery comes barking at her door when a lost dog turns up in a panic. Pen and her son Spencer follow the furry fugitive to a wooded area where the dog’s owner lies unconscious. Mrs. Cunningham is a warm-hearted widow who volunteers at the animal shelter and runs Buy the Book’s pet lovers book club. Why would anyone shoot such a sweet soul?
If you like Cleo Coyle, you may also want to check out Sarah Graves books, or our guide to Laura Childs’ Tea Shop Mystery series. Don’t hesitate to follow us on Twitter or Facebook to discover more book series.