Okay, here's a completely useless post on the completely useless question of which fictional town I'd rather live in: St. Mary Mead or Sea Harbor.
St. Mary Mead, England: Picturesque small village where Miss Marple lives and a short list of dead bodies pile up whose murders she solves. Country beauty might be outweighed by a higher-then-average chance of being murdered by some outwardly-normal-appearing-yet-bloodthirsty killer. On the other hand, as a nosy spinster lady who talks to her cats and dogs, volunteers, and drinks tea, I'm practically a resident already. On the third hand, those thatched cottages are probably quite damp and cold in the winter. On the fourth hand, most are living in what Barbara Pym would term "genteel poverty," and goodness knows I fit that bill. It would be nice to be surrounded by others in the same boat. And need I mention charming men with charming accents? On the fifth hand, no one would look askance at eccentric spinster lady taking her dog(s) with her everywhere.
Sea Harbor, MA: Picturesque small village on Cape Ann where the Seaside Knitting Studio is hub for a diverse group of women who are best friends and who solve murders while eating good chow every Thursday night and never spilling food on the very expensive yarn. Shore beauty might be outweighed by a higher-than-average chance of being murdered....but dinner on the Endicotts' deck every Friday sounds delicious. Downside--they are the kind of knitters who assume anyone who knits must want to master every item that can conceivably be knit, and they practically force poor Cass into making a shawl. I get my dander up very easily, so this would cheese me a bit if they tried to push me into knitting socks. On the other hand, being surrounded by people who know you intimately and still care and check on you to make sure you haven't been murdered sounds good. On the third hand, no one apparently suffers to live on a budget in Sea Harbor, so there's no way I could live there on my paltry salary. On the fourth hand, long walks on the beach with frolicking dogs sounds perfect (can you tell I'm in one of my tired-of-living-in-the-hot-desert funks?). On the fifth hand, less-than-charming Boston accents (no offense).
Hmm. Can't decide. I think I'd be happy in either place. As long as I wasn't one of the murdered victims. That would stink.