Did you know that October 1 – 7 has been designated as Mystery Series Week? I certainly didn’t! One source that I read said that one of the small American independent publishers, Purple Moon Press, decided to proclaim the first full week in October to honor fictional crime solvers who consistently close the case.
Even those of us who do not normally gravitate to mysteries know some of the famous private investigators, detectives, and medical examiners who kept their creators busy devising new circumstances and locales for their favorite sleuths.
Sherlock Holmes and John Watson materialized from the fertile imagination of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. They encountered and solved crimes in the more than 50 short stories that he wrote, as well as plays, movies, and TV series.
The talents of Philip Marlow were the basis of 8 novels by author Raymond Chandler from The Big Sleep (1939) through Poodle Springs (1989).
England’s legendary Agatha Christie contributed the exploits of Hercule Poirot from The Mysterious Affair at Styles (1920) to Curtain (1975) and Miss Marple beginning with Murder at the Vicarage (1930) and ending with Sleeping Murder (1976).
Medical examiner Kay Scarpetta was introduced to a loyal fan base in the 1990s by Patricia Cornwell. To date, Scarpetta has been the heroine of two dozen books, from Postmortem (1990) to Chaos (2016).
Mystery Series have really taken off since the opening of the 21st Century. If one wants to read them in chronological order, go to the website Book Series in Order at https://www.bookseriesinorder.com/page/2/
Here are some of the characters that are now available in a series:
Armand Gamache- This French-Canadian inspector was the brainchild of author Louise Penny, who has to date written 15 books about him, from Still Life (2005) to Kingdom of the Blind (2018).
Maggie O’Dell- Nebraska author Alex Kava has written about Maggie’s exploits in 13 novels, from Before Evil through Good Night, Sweet Mother (2017).
Stephanie Plum – This bounty hunter has been the subject of 26 novels from the pen of Janet Evanovich, from One for the Money (1994) – Look Alive 25 (2018).
Jack Reacher – a former Army Military Policeman, who has solved cases in 20 books written by Lee Child. The Reacher series began with Killing Floor (1997) through Past Tense (2018).
Maisie Dobbs – a former World War I nurse, who trained in the 1920s with a psychologist and uses her skills, intuition, and Scotland Yard connections to solve crimes. Author Jacqueline Winspear has sent her on adventures in 14 books.
Lisabeth Salander – This computer hacker has three adventures to her credit, from The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2005) to The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest (2007). Her creator is Swedish novelist Stieg Larsson.
The Bellevue University Library has some of these characters available in book, audio book, and DVD format. Consider looking up your author of choice on the Book Series in Order site at https://www.bookseriesinorder.com/page/2/
Once you have the order, contact the library staff at firstname.lastname@example.org or Oconnor@bellevue.edu and let us know your format of choice. We can let you know which items we own. Those items that the library does not own can be requested through Interlibrary loan.