Image features a map of Arizona against a beige background with the text "Books set in Arizona" above it. Surrounding the map are illustrations of books in various orientations.

Books Set in Arizona

Our journey through the 50 states continues with a stop in Arizona!

Book Club Pick – Arizona

Starting Over in Sedona by Lynne M. Spreen

Starting Over in Sedona by Lynne M. Spreen book cover

What is Starting Over in Sedona about?

Broke and lonely, she has one more shot at happiness. There’s only one problem.

Tired of grieving, Sue Weston is excited when her estranged sister promises to leave her the family homestead in Sedona, Arizona. Is this her chance to emerge from sorrow and start living again? With Roseanne, it’s never that simple.

Rafael Palacios has been given the chance of a lifetime. His dying friend, Roseanne, has promised to leave him her property, a priceless red rock mesa with a killer view. He will sell it to the highest bidder and buy himself the security he’s been seeking all his life.

When Sue and Rafael meet at Roseanne’s deathbed, they’re horrified to discover they’re both inheriting the land. Now, they’re pitted against each other, even as they resist the greatest love of their lives.

Lynne M. Spreen on Literary Escapes Podcast

Want to know more about Lynne and her books? Listen to this conversation on the Literary Escapes Podcast!

More Sweet Reads Set in Arizona

Enjoy this additional selection of books set in Arizona, spanning cozy mystery, sweet romance, and memoir. Perfect for easy reading, these delightful tales promise happy, hopeful endings.

Which one will you choose for a literary escape to Arizona?

Wait For It by Jenn McKinlay

Wait for It by Jenn McKinlay book cover

Genre: Romance

Stuck in a dreary Boston winter, Annabelle Martin would like nothing more than to run away from her current life. She’s not even thirty years old, twice-divorced, and has just dodged a marriage proposal… from her ex-husband. When she’s offered her dream job as creative director at a cutting-edge graphic design studio in Phoenix, she jumps at the opportunity to start over.
When she arrives in the Valley of the Sun, Annabelle is instantly intrigued by her anonymous landlord. Based on the cranky, handwritten notes Nick Daire leaves her, she assumes he is an old, rich curmudgeon. Annabelle is shocked when she finally meets Nick and discovers that he’s her age and uses a wheelchair. Nick suffered from a stroke a year ago, and while there’s no physical reason for him not to recover, he is struggling to overcome the paralyzing fear that has kept him a prisoner in his own home.
Despite her promise to herself not to get involved, Annabelle finds herself irresistibly drawn to Nick. And soon she wonders if she and Nick might help each other find the courage to embrace life, happiness, and true love.

Golden Hour of You and Me by K Jamila

Golden Hour of You and Me by K Jamila book cover

Genre: Romance

Sheyanne Shaw hates nothing more than she hates her hometown of Flagstaff, Arizona.

Except maybe being forced to return to it. After escaping her estranged relationship with her father, leaving behind her brother and her best friends, she returns after four years away. All to help her father in sorting out the house and the stables she grew up on. But she is not just greeted by him and the demons she tried so hard to leave behind.

Liam Landon never thought he’d step foot in such a small town.

Raised in the city of Vegas, the small town was not what he expected. Hired to help Mr. Shaw manage his finances, he can’t turn down the opportunity to help out his grandparents and start building a life for himself. While traveling for the job isn’t unheard of as a freelancer, it’s a bit different to be expected to stay for three months. Liam is open to it—only to be met with the absolute spitfire of his boss’s daughter.

Kissed by CJ Shane

Kissed by CJ Shane book cover

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Cat Miranda returns to her childhood home in Bisbee, Arizona, to take over her brother’s art gallery following his untimely death. On her first night home, an intruder breaks in. Cat quickly realizes that she is being targeted by a murderer with links to an 8-foot tall painting in the gallery titled “Kissed.”

In her struggle to stay safe, Cat finds an ally in Miles Trevelyan, a charming visiting British scholar. The heat rises with more assaults on Cat and between Cat and Miles, too, as their feelings for each other grow. Can they discover what is behind the painting “Kissed” before Cat becomes the next victim?

Half Broke Horses by Jeannette Walls

Half Broke Horses by Jeannette Walls book cover

Genre: Memoir

“Those old cows knew trouble was coming before we did.”

So begins the story of Lily Casey Smith, Jeannette Walls’s no-nonsense, resourceful, and spectacularly compelling grandmother. By age six, Lily was helping her father break horses. At fifteen, she left home to teach in a frontier town—riding five hundred miles on her pony, alone, to get to her job. She learned to drive a car and fly a plane. And, with her husband, Jim, she ran a vast ranch in Arizona. She raised two children, one who is Jeannette’s memorable mother, Rosemary Smith Walls, unforgettably portrayed in The Glass Castle.

Lily survived tornadoes, droughts, floods, the Great Depression, and the most heartbreaking personal tragedy. She bristled at prejudice of all kinds—against women, Native Americans, and anyone else who didn’t fit the mold. Rosemary Smith Walls always told Jeannette that she was like her grandmother, and in this true-life novel, Jeannette Walls channels that kindred spirit. Half Broke Horses is Laura Ingalls Wilder for adults, as riveting and dramatic as Isak Dinesen’s Out of Africa or Beryl Markham’s West with the Night.

Something Shady at Sunshine Haven by Kris Bock

Something Shady at Sunshine Haven by Kris Bock book cover

Genre: Cozy Mystery

She’s pursued the most dangerous news stories around the world. But can she survive going home?

Injured in a bombing, war correspondent Kate Tessler returns to her hometown in Arizona to recover. For the first time in her life, she’s starting to feel her age of nearly fifty despite living like a teenager again: staying in her childhood bedroom with only a cat for company, trying to understand why her sister resents her so much, and running into people who still refer to her as Kitty. The hardest part? Seeing her once-sharp and witty mother stuck in an Alzheimer’s unit.

When an old friend asks her to investigate suspicious deaths at the nursing home, Kate limps into action. Is a self-appointed “Angel of Mercy” killing patients to end their suffering? Are family members hastening their inheritance? Is an employee extorting money and removing the witnesses? Kate uses her journalism skills to track clues, but the puzzle pieces simply won’t fit.

If Kate can’t uncover the truth quickly, her mother could be next on the killer’s list.

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