Blog posts about the Rabbi Aviva Cohen Mysteries and their author Rabbi Ilene Schneider


“Miami Snow,” winner of Public Safety Writers Association best published short story of 2012, originally published in Mysterical-E, Fall, 2013: [republished in Kings River Life: ]

“Peanut Butter and Glitter,” originally published in Suspense Magazine, October, 2015: [republished in Kings River Life:]

“Perfect,” PSWA winner for best published flash fiction, 2013, and among top ten entries in Lee Loftland’s Golden Donut Entries, 2013, posted at:

“We Were Slaves,” originally published in Kings River Life, Dec. 29, 2018:


In time for Yomim Nora’im (the Days of Awe) and Yom Kippur itself, the Kindle edition of the 3rd Rabbi Aviva Cohen Mystery, YOM

KILLER, is on a limited time special sale for 99¢.

Buy it now so you’ll have one fewer regret to atone for. 😉


I am thrilled to announce my short story “Triangle” been accepted for inclusion in the anthology Jewish Noir 2, edited by Ken Wishnia and Chantelle Aimeé Osman, to be released September, 2020. The signed contract is in the mail (for real). My thanks to David Gerrold for allowing me to steal a line he posted that gave me my ending and to Terri Weiner for suggesting I use the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire as a theme.

I’ll remind all of you when the book is published.

You know you’ll need to take a break from your Pesach preparations. You know you’ll need to unwind after the Seders are over. What better way than with a Pesach-themed humorous cozy mystery? Especially when the Kindle edition of UNLEAVENED DEAD will be on sale for 99 cents.

Start: Tuesday, April 16 at 8AM Pacific time
End: Monday, April 22 at midnight, Pacific time.
Two members of Rabbi Aviva Cohen’s congregation are found dead, victims, they say, of accidental carbon monoxide poisoning. But Aviva has info that leads her to doubt it was an accident. Then, police suspect Aviva’s niece’s partner in a hit-and-run death. Aviva is sure the woman is innocent, even though her SUV has a body-sized dent on the hood. As she looks into t
he two disparate cases, Aviva discovers they may be connected, and her amateur sleuthing takes a sinister turn that involves sexual abuse, money laundering, stolen identities, and an FBI investigation. Once again, her curiosity has put her life in jeopardy.





A complete departure from my usual humorous, cozy mystery novels and humorous, noir-ish short stories, “We Were Slaves” looks at a possible alternate reality in which Isabella and Ferdinand’s army was defeated in the Iberian peninsula, leading to the fall of Christian Europe.

… or any time of year:

The three Rabbi Aviva Cohen Mysteries and TALKING DIRTY – IN YIDDISH? are available on Kindle.

Buy early and often!





As promised, here we go:




Having trouble finding the new editions of the Rabbi Aviva Cohen Mysteries on Amazon? So am I. Enter these ISBNs individually into the search box to access them:

CHANUKAH GUILT: 9781938436475

UNLEAVENED DEAD: 9781938436529

YOM KILLER: 9781938436192

I’ll post the short cut links later.


Sorry: can’t access print version of Chanukah Guilt or Kindle version of Unleavened Dead. We’ll get it together soon. I hope.


Rabbi Aviva Cohen is a twice- divorced woman of a certain age with no children and a comfortable, undemanding, and unchallenging job as the rabbi of a small congregation located  in a university town in South Jersey about 15 miles east of Philadelphia and nestled between suburban sprawl and the Pine Barrens. She juggles dealing with her unconventional family – her niece and niece’s wife and their two children, her elderly, feisty mother in Boston, and her stick-in-the-mud sister in Florida – while investigating suspicious deaths to the chagrin of  her academic-turned-police chief first ex-husband.








A review in (scroll down past the featured novels) of the original Talk Dirty Yiddish at

[Unfortunately, this edition is out-of-print, although some copies are still available. Fortunately, the new, revised, expanded version (“30% longer! 30% funnier!”), TALKING DIRTY – IN YIDDISH?, has been issued by my publisher Aakenbaaken and Kent in both paperback and Kindle ( or]

“If you have run out of words to describe your feelings about politics, the price of theater tickets or your daughter-in-law’s cooking, have I got a book for you! Talk Dirty in Yiddish by Ilene Schneider, will enable you to articulate your inner angst with surgical precision. No other language offers as many inventive curses, comical expressions and hilarious witticisms. You may know what a shmear is, but how about forshpeis or geshmakt? Each Yiddish word or expression is followed by an example of how to use it in English conversation. Why tell your annoying neighbor to pick up after her incontinent cockapoo when you can sweetly tell her (in Yiddish) to be a chandelier…hang by day and burn by night. Who would write such a book? A rabbi, of course! –Stacia Friedman”