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Dorothy Simpson Books In Order

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Publication Order of Inspector Thanet Books

The Night She Died (1980)Description / Buy at Amazon
Six Feet Under (1982)Description / Buy at Amazon
Puppet For A Corpse (1982)Description / Buy at Amazon
Close Her Eyes (1984)Description / Buy at Amazon
Last Seen Alive (1985)Description / Buy at Amazon
Dead on Arrival (1986)Description / Buy at Amazon
Element of Doubt (1987)Description / Buy at Amazon
Suspicious Death (1988)Description / Buy at Amazon
Dead By Morning (1989)Description / Buy at Amazon
Doomed To Die (1991)Description / Buy at Amazon
Wake the Dead (1992)Description / Buy at Amazon
No Laughing Matter (1993)Description / Buy at Amazon
Day for Dying (1995)Description / Buy at Amazon
Once Too Often (1998)Description / Buy at Amazon
Dead and Gone (1999)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Harbingers of Fear (1992)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

Valiant Doctors in the Frontier West (2020)Description / Buy at Amazon

Dorothy Simpson is a renowned novelist from the United Kingdom, who is popular for writing mystery, thriller, crime fiction, and suspense stories. She is particularly famous for her long running Inspector Thanet book series. Author Simpson was born as Dorothy Preece Simpson on June 20, 1933 in Blaenavon, Monmouthshire, Wales. She was raised in South Wales and completed her schooling from the Bridgend Grammar School. Later, Simpson studied at the Bristol University and obtained a degree in the study of modern languages. Immediately after the completion of her graduation, author Simpson relocated to Kent, where she got involved in teaching French at the Dartford College. She also taught the grammar schools of Erith between 1955 and 1962.

Author Simpson fell in love with the beautiful location of Kent so much that she decided to set it as the background of her first Inspector Thanet novel. And when she got a positive response from the audience, Simpson continued to use it in all her subsequent novels. In 1961, author Simpson got married and settled down. Until this time, Simpson did not have any plans of becoming a writer. However, she used to love reading mystery books and always looked forward to reading the well known books of prominent authors of that time. But, when she started her new job as a counselor of marriage guidance, she used to get a lot of free time aside from her work. This enabled her to try different things to kill the time. And writing was one of them. Simpson continued her counselling work between 1969 and 1982. She took a serious interest in writing from 1975 onwards and also came up with her first novel in the same year.

As the years passed, her interest in writing grew even more. And with the numerous praises and appreciations coming in from all around, Simpson’s confidence reached a new level. She wrote many novels one after the other and did not look back. Author Simpson also won the Silver Dagger Award in 1986. As of today, Simpson lives a happy life with her husband and 3 children in Maidstone, Kent. She has not come up with a new novel for a long time, but hopes to produce a new story for her fans very soon. In fact, she has even started working on a story and will be publishing it in the next few months.

Following the successful publishing of her first book in 1977, the next 3 manuscripts of author Simpson were rejected. She did not feel let down by the rejections and became determined to devote all her efforts in developing an intriguing story of murder mystery revolving around an even more intriguing sleuth. And what followed next changed the life and career of author Simpson completely. She created the characters of Inspector Thanet and Sergeant Lineham, and developed an engaging story around them. The characters and story found many takers that enabled author Simpson to come up with several more intriguing mystery stories involving the same character and set up. Author Simpson suffered from a severe case of stress injury repeatedly and this made writing difficult for. So, she stopped writing completely in 2000. However, Simpson hopes to recover and start writing again very soon.

The Inspector Thanet series written by author Simpson is comprised of a total of 15 books, which were released between the years 1980 and 1999. Each and every novel of this series features the chief protagonists in the roles of Michael Linham and Luke Thanet. In addition to these two main characters, every book consists of other important secondary characters that help to carry the stories forward. The settings are done mainly in Kent and London. The debut book of the series is entitled ‘The Night She Died’. It was released by the M. Joseph publication in the year 1980. Author Simpson has mentioned the lead characters in this book as Luke Thanet, Michael Lineham, and Julie Holmes. Its story takes place in London and Kent.

At the start of the book’s story, it is shown that many men have been enticed by Julie Holmes, including her husband a popular broadcaster from London, and her newly appointed boss in Kent. But, it comes as a great shock and surprise when her stabbed body is found lying on the floor of her home’s front hall. The stab wound cut through her overcoat and into her heart. Julie’s husband discovers her in that state just after he arrives home from his evening class. Inspector Thanet is ordered to take over the case and find the murderer. As there was no other witness at the time of Julie’s murder, Thanet suspects that her husband might not be saying the truth. After carrying out some investigation, Inspector Thanet finds comes to know that when Julie Holmes was 3 years old she had witnessed a deadly crime. And the memory of that crime was haunting her throughout her life. Everyone suspects that the same murderer might be the one who killed Julie in order to keep his secret hidden. But, Thanet knows he is very close to unraveling the real killer. He trusts his instincts more than what others say and it always leads him on the right path. And this particular case also, Thanet follows his instincts and succeeds in catching Julie Holmes’ murderer.

Another intriguing installment of the series is given the name ‘Element of Doubt’. This book was published in 1987 and features Nerine Tarrant, Luke Thanet, Roland Tarrant, Michael Lineham, Celia Speed, Damon Tarrant, and Daphne Tarrant in the main roles. At the beginning of the story of the book, it is depicted that Luke Thanet takes over the case of the mysterious death of Nerine Tarrant. Given the expertise that Thanet has in solving murder mysteries, he is pressed hard to find out whether Nerine Tarrant fell on her own from the 2nd storey balcony of her house ‘High Gables’ or somebody pushed her to death. The list of suspects is very long and Sgt. Lineham and Inspector Thanet get busy interviewing each one of them.

At first, they suspect that Roland, Nerine’s husband, killed her to take revenge from Nerine for her infidelities. They also suspect Nerine’s mother-in-law might have murdered her because she was constantly threatening to shift her to an old-age home. Also, Celia Speed could have been the one who killed Nerine as both her son and husband were having affairs with her. Nerine’s children, Daphne and Damon, also had their reasons that could have compelled them to kill their mother. Inspector Thanet knows the killer is one among these people and he has to carefully examine the motives of each one of them to reveal the identity of the killer. Sergeant Michael Lineham assist him in the investigation and plays an important role in solving the mystery.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Dorothy Simpson

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