If this topic appeared before I apologize, but my mother asked me to find her some humourous crime novels such as Evanovich writes. Can anyone give me some specific titles? They should be light-hearted and easy to read but not too cute. She's not a cat lover, for instance. Thanks for the help.

Incidentally, to those who named sixties radical novels for my husband, thanks too. He read most of them and is writing the piece now.

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Oooooh, my favourite topic :o) Well, assuming she does not want anything too dark, too bizarre, or too naughty, as well as anything too cute, here are some which she might enjoy.

Two hitmen have been hired to kill an embezzler. Unfortunately, the same night a teenager is playing a trick on said embezzler's daughter. The plot is completely bonkers, the characters are outrageous, and some of the situations are laugh out loud funny. Reservoir Toads.

Dr Siri Paiboun is the very reluctant) 72 year old State Coroner in 70s Laos. It sounds very grand but, in reality, he's Laos' ONLY coroner. Oh, and he's never actually performed an autopsy before. And he doesn't really have much equipment. Well, ANY equipment. And his staff consists of a childlike male attendant and a nurse with a secret addiction to banned fan magazines. Just to make things worse, he's visited in his dreams by the spirits of the people he has performed autopsies on.

Robert Amiss is on a one year fellowship at St Martha's College for women, courtesy of his good friend "Jack" Troutbeck, who is the college bursar. When the college is left a small fortune the faculty splits into factions - the virgins, the dykes and the old women (who are, in fact, men). When the Mistress is murdered, Robert steps in to investigate, since the police, quite frankly, couldn't organise a piss-up in a brewery. Witty, wonderful dialogue, totally politically incorrect.

Vincent Rubio is a Private Eye who is addicted to basil. He’s also a velociraptor.What normal people don’t know is that the dinosaurs faked their extinction millions of years ago and are walking amongst us, cleverly disguised in latex suits. Pass me the basil.

A rather dim US Congressman visits the Eager Beaver, a topless bar where a former FBI clerk dances. Sex, power, blackmail and politics all mix with hilarious and bizarre results. Outrageously over the top characters and situations.

This book is told from the perspective of two great characters - one a precocious teenage girl called Serendipity Dahlquist, the other a world-weary, been there, done that, got the scars to prove it Private Eye.

It’s 1699 in London and the Countess of Clapham – Anastasia Ashby de le Zouche – is short of cash. In the Fleet Prison for non payment of…well, everything…she has to turn to journalism to earn a dishonest penny by unearthing, or just plain making up, scandal for the tabloids of the times.

Apartment hunting can be murder. Millionaire Cyrus has a big gap in his life that all the money in the world can't fill. Until the day when he accidentally shoplifts a self-help book and discovers that The Master has a message for him. And the message is 'Cyrus, you need to become a serial killer'.

Single women are disappearing, and the only link seems to be Handclasp House Marriage Bureau. Inspector Purbright and Sergeant Love investigate, with the unwanted help of Miss Lucilla Edith Cavell Teatime. Lonelyheart 4122 is one of a series of books set in the 1960s and 70s in the fictional town of Flaxborough. They are a wonderful mixture of English village mystery and bawdy Rabelasian humor.

John Dortmunder and gang have been hired to steal an emerald. The client is a small and newly formed African nation, who think it belongs to them. The titular owner is another small African nation. And they don't want it going missing. A real comedy of errors, with everything that could go wrong...and much more besides...going wrong, despite Dortmunder’s excellent planning.
Has she read the Southern Sisters mysteries by Anne George? The series starts with Murder on a Girls' Night Out.

Or maybe Kathy Hogan Trocheck's Callahan Garrity mysteries, starting with Every Crooked Nanny. I love the characters of some of the cleaning staff in those books.

Sarah Strohmeyer's Bubbles Yablonsky mysteries have often been compared to Janet Evanovich's, beginning with Bubble Unbound. (I don't think so, but alot of people do.)

Donna Andrews' Meg Langslow mysteries start with Murder with Peacocks.

I'm with Donna. I enjoy humorous mysteries. And, I'm sure there's tons more I could think of. If your mother tries any of the suggestions, let us know what ones she likes.
Thanks for you work on this. I'm off to find a few for her.
Let's not forget Wodehouse on Crime - classic, laugh out loud stuff.

And I second Stephen's suggestion of Westlake. His Dortmunder novels are terrific.
Great suggestions thus far...and I'd like to add a few of my favorites...how about Elaine Viets, Laura Durham, Cathy Pickens, Casey Daniels (nearly laughed myself silly with that one). Just about anything in the 'geezer lit' corner of the cozy mystery section always gives me a grin or two as well. Old people are just funny! And the older I get, the funnier they become! LOL...

Sadly I am now old enough not to find them funny at all. Just familiar! Thanks for some more great suggestions.
Donna Moore is, of course, too modest to include her own novel, Go to Helena Handbasket, but, believe me, it's hilarious.
Patricia, Karen MacInerney's Gray Whale Inn Mysteriers are light. B & B Cozies. Her first is Murder on the Rock and her second, just out is Dead and Berried. Karen is a friend of mine and a great writer. Syl
Liz Evans writes very funny books starring her haples private investigator, Grace Smith. Set in an English seaside town, the series starts with 'Barking'.
Leigh Redhead's books about private investigator and ex-stripper Simone Kirsch are also great fun. Set in Melbourne, the first book is 'Peepshow'. Although, these may be a little risque for you mother!
I have enought good suggestions for the next year. Thanks so much for your efforts.
If you have room, here are a couple of suggestion: Lawrence Block and his Bernie Rhodenbarr series. The Burglar Who Thought he was Bogart, The Burglar on the Prowl, The Burglar Who Studied Spinoza, etc. Also, Joan Hess's Maggody series (Maggody is a place in Arkansas.) These are laugh out loud funny and full of larger than life characters. P.S. I also love anything written by Carl Hiassen.
I second the nominations for Nancy Martin's Blackbird Sisters mysteries and for Lawrence Block's "The Burglar Who..." series. I'd like to add Chris Grabenstein to the list. His three Jersey shore mysteries (Mad Mouse, Tilt A Whirl and the new Whack a Mole) are really funny, with a great voice. Also a new author, Susan Goodwill, whose Briga-DOOM is about a girl trying to restore her family's classic old theater on a lake in Michigan.


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