Will They Or Won’t They?

valentineI know romance is supposed to take the backseat plot-wise in mysteries, but in honor of Valentine’s Day I thought it’d be fun to highlight a few relationships that steal the show!

Here are a few of my favorite will-they-or-won’t-they couples from mystery series:

Cormoran Strike and Robin Ellacott – This unconventional pair is from J.K. Rowling’s/Robert Galbraith’s series and their relationship is part of the intrigue, especially after that cliffhanger ending in book 3. They so clearly need each other and I absolutely love the way Strike empowers Robin to pursue her detecting dream!

Jane Steward and Edwin Alcott – I recently got hooked on this Ellery Adams cozy series and can’t wait for the next installment, especially to see what happens next between Jane and Edwin! Edwin plays the perfect suspect-turned-love-interest and I love that he harbors a treasure trove of secrets…

Lady Emily Ashton and Colin Hargreaves – One of the things I most admire about Tasha Alexander’s Lady Emily is how modern she strives to be in Victorian England, and the best thing about Colin Hargreaves is that he completely supports her seemingly eccentric ways. Plus, I mean, he’s super hot *swoon*

Phryne Fisher and Detective Jack Robinson – Granted, this is based on the tv show (anyone know if there will be another season?!), but the chemistry between these characters is palpable. I love how they flirtatiously challenge each other so that the tension builds through every. single. episode. Not to mention that kiss!

Nichelle Clark and Joey – One great way to increase romantic tension is to add obstacles to a relationship, and LynDee Walker is masterful with reporter Nichelle and her sexy mafia boss boyfriend Joey. That they have to keep their relationship secret makes it even steamier!

Who are your favorite couples in mystery series??


Author: Kate Lansing

I write mysteries, YA novels, and short fiction. I also read A LOT, travel as much as possible, and take way too many pictures of my cat.

11 thoughts on “Will They Or Won’t They?”

  1. You mention some good ones. I love Savannah Martin and Rafe Collier in Jenna Bennet’s series. They’re married now, so it’ll be interesting. Nora Blackbird and Mick from Nancy Martin. Hmm. I seem to like when a “good” girl/guy pairs up with a naughty (at least slightly) partner!


  2. Interesting! I love reading about romantic couples in mysteries, but the serious mystery fans in my book club get distracted by this element. So now I have some great recommendations. The couple I think of first is Clare and Russ in Julia Spencer-Fleming’s series.


  3. I have a hard time picking “couples” because I think the most “valid” couples in mystery stories are the ones that are couples from the start. I mentioned this in a previous post, but somehow, once two characters become “a couple” they suddenly go from being two characters to being just one somehow. They tend to loose their individuality, their unique characteristics, and their personal strengths. Instead of complimenting each other as they once did previously, they morph into one homogenous/hybrid character or even worse, one becomes dominant (why is it always the guy?????) and one fades into a supporting role. From then on, the stories just seem to go downhill.

    I as a reader want characters to move and grow, and that is hard to do without developing “couple” relationships which we all do. Of course, there is also nothing worse that a couple who just date for 5 years……no one does that except in books. But why oh why do those “relationships” always hijack the story line? Don’t these people know anyone else that they could meet, date, and marry? You are writers — just have someone with a different job move in from an exotic place!

    My challenge to all you writers is to develop strong characters, both male and female who can stand on their own, live their own lives, do their own jobs, and develop relationships that enhance story lines. Good luck with that.


  4. Whoops, I forgot my favorite couple — characters who have managed to maintain their own individual strengths — Jane Ryland and Jake Brogan from Hank Phillippi Ryan. They have grown individually and as a couple while still maintaining their own personalities.


  5. I’ve been binge watching Agatha Raisin on Amazon/Acorn. There’s only 8 episodes in season 1 so its not that big a binge. Anyway, its about a PR guru from London who wants a simple life and moves to Cotswold but she still dresses like she’s going to work every day. She has fabulous hair and shoes like Hank Phillippi Ryan and a Scottish accent like Catriona McPherson. And she clumps around in really high heels through the fields sleuthing. So the season 1 cliffhanger is: will she and James reconcile after their wedding was spoiled by the unexpected appearance of the husband she thought was dead. It’s a cute show. Cute village characters.


  6. Thanks for all your thoughtful comments, ladies!! I have some books–and romantic couples–to read about 😉 3 no 7, that’s a great challenge for us writers, and something we definitely need to keep in mind. Jane Ryland and Jake Brogan almost made my list! Hope everyone has a wonderful Valentine’s Day! ❤


  7. Gosh, I wish I knew these people! Tim Hallinan has a couple who met and are now together in his Poke Rafferty series who I root for. I love their little piece-meal family and how desperately they need each other.

    Happy Valentine’s Day!


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