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Murphy Books In Order

Publication Order of Murphy Books

Murphy (1987) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Murphy's Gold (1988) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Murphy's Herd (1989) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Murphy's War (1990) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Murphy's Stand (1993) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Murphy's Ambush (1995) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Murphy's Trail (1996) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle


The Murphy series is a series of young adult and western novels written by the famous American author Gary Paulsen. It is comprised of a total of 7 novels published between the years 1987 and 1996. Author Gary Paulsen wrote the first 4 novels of the series on his own and was later joined by another author named Brian Burks in writing the remaining three novels of the series. All the novels of the series feature the main protagonist in the form of Al Murphy, who is described by the author as the sheriff of the town of Cincherville. Author Gary has said that although he has written the novels of the series under the young adult genre, there are not unfit or the adults as they can also enjoy it reading. Gary started writing the series in the year 1987 and eventually published the first novel of the series in the same year. Author Brian Burks joined him in the fifth novel of the series and co-authored the remaining books. Finally, the two authors concluded the Murphy series after writing and publishing the 7th novel of the series in the year 1996. The first novel of the series is called ‘Murphy’ in which author Gary Paulsen has introduced the primary characters. Apart from the first novel, all the remaining 6 novels are written as sequels to the initial setup of the series.

After being introduced as the main protagonist of the series and the sheriff of Cincherville in the first novel of the series, Al Murphy is asked by a woman to find his missing husband in the second novel of the series. He takes up the job and sets out to search for the missing husband of the woman. Later, he finds his dead body and decides to avenge his death in order to fulfill the promise that he had given to the woman. When author Brian Burks joins Gary Paulsen to write the next novels of the series, they together describe Al Murphy as becoming a frequent drinker and drifting away because of the sudden death of his wife. While still drifting away, he witnesses a murder taking place and goes to help the sheriff in-charge of the case for catching the murder. Al Murphy meets the sister of the victim called Christine, who believes that a rival merchant of her brother named Gibson called for the murder of her brother at the hands of local goons. Soon, Murphy finds himself back on track and joins the sheriff in order to take Gibson out and solve the murder case. The next novel of the series written by authors Brian Burks and Gary Paulsen shows Murphy leaving his life as a lawman behind and quitting from the post of the sheriff of Cincherville. But, when he moves to New Mexico, he is seen as looking a new badge. Eventually, he goes after goes after a murderous gang in order to bring them down as they were involved in the double murder of a rancher’s wife and his daughter.

The first novel of the Murphy series written by author Gary Paulsen in collaboration with author Brian Burks was published under the title ‘Murphy’. It was published by the Pocket Books publishing house in the year 1987. The plot of this novel introduces Al Murphy as the main protagonist of the series and the sheriff of the town of Cincherville. Throughout the plot of the novel, he appears to be the only person in the whole town standing against the chaos and striving to bring back peace in the town of Cincherville. Later, he comes across the dead body of a girl who was raped and murdered by a brutal killer. The killer does not seem to stop at this as he keeps on killing victims after victims. Being the sheriff of the town, Al Murphy sees to it that no one gets away with murder. Soon, it is discovered that Colorado is held bin the glittering grip of the Gold fever It was clear that the desperate prospectors will make use of all the possible things in order to steal a goldmine as they were fueled by greed. When Al Murphy takes a look into the case, he suspects that gold might be the reason behind the recent disappearance of a victim. After a little while, he comes across a killer who was willing to declare his claim by killing all those who came in his way. After waiting for a long time because of his involvement in the murder investigations in the city, Murphy finally gets the time to marry Midge, who is described by the authors as the owner of a cafe in Cincherville town. When she moves to Casper, Wyoming while Al Murphy remains away from the ranch, someone uses the opportunity to kill MIdge in order to make Murphy pay for his activities against the criminals. The incident breaks him from the inside and he starts drinking and drifting. As the intention of the killer in destroying the life of Murphy appears to get fulfilled, he retaliates back and once again takes up his post as the sheriff. He vows with a great determination to catch the one who killed his wife and make him pay for his brutal act.

One of the other novel of the series was published in the year 1996 by the Thorndike Press publishing house. It was titled ‘Murphy’s Trail’ and continued to depict the life of Al Murphy as the sheriff of Clincherville. He did not care about whether he had jurisdiction as a sheriff in the Arizona Territory or not because he was willing to help Risa Villabisencio after being asked by her to do so. He was under the debt to her and her husband Santiago, who had saved his life by nursing him when he was wounded in a gun battle. Santiago used to work as a lawyer by profession and also served as the leader of a small community in San Patricio, Mexico and its surrounding areas. When he saw that the justice was not getting served properly by the local law, he tried to enlist the help of the governor. Al Murphy comes to know that Santiago and his 2 sons were headed to meet the U.S. marshal in Vera Cruz with the intention of reporting the crimes of the cattleman Ben King. Ben had recently murdered a couple of Mexican goat herders. However, it is learned that Santiago never reached to Tucson. Sheriff Al Murphy finds his vehicle with blood spread all over the seats, but there were no signs of Santiago and his sons. Following all the possible leads that he could, Murphy tries to retrace the trail of Santiago. However, it seemed by very difficult for Murphy to fight single-handedly against Ben King and his men, he was lucky enough to get help from the most unlikely of his allies whenever he least expected for it. This time too, he was helped by one of his allies in order to save Santiago and his sons from the King and his men.

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