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Inspector Morse Books In Order

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Publication Order of Inspector Morse Books

Last Bus to Woodstock (1975)Description / Buy at Amazon
Last Seen Wearing (1976)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Silent World of Nicholas Quinn (1977)Description / Buy at Amazon
Service of All the Dead (1979)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Dead of Jericho (1981)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Riddle of the Third Mile (1983)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Secret of Annexe 3 (1986)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Wench Is Dead (1989)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Jewel That Was Ours (1989)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Way Through The Woods (1992)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Daughters of Cain (1994)Description / Buy at Amazon
Death Is Now My Neighbor (1996)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Remorseful Day (1999)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Inspector Morse Collections

Morse's Greatest Mystery and Other Stories (1993)Description / Buy at Amazon

When it comes to books involving mysterious crimes, it does not get better than old-fashioned stories and plots. Inspector Morse (series by Colin Dexter) is one of the best criminal mysteries books to be written. Colin is an English author born back in 1930 and has written several books. His works includes both learning books, stand alone novels and series stories like Inspector Morse. The series novels were written between 1975 and 1999. They exhibit careful plotting and Colin does not lead his readers astray. Anyone who loves books about detectives and how crime mysteries are solved will definitely like the book. Plots are well coordinated from the beginning to the end. Colin also manifests his expertise by developing and transforming his characters so that readers have a better flow of events. The series contains several books and characters. Most of the episodes are based in England. Inspector Morse is the main protagonist of the series.

Book series details

The Inspector Morse series by Colin Dexter contains a total of 13 different novels that describe different episodes. The book series starts with Last Bus to Woodstock and ends with The Remorseful Day. In general summary, the series contains several crimes, how they are planned and perpetrated and how detectives work to solve them. In the first book, two young women waiting to board a bus from Oxford to Woodstock get a lift ride. One of them (Sylvia Kaye) is found murdered in a parking lot of a club (Black Prince) in Woodstock later that night, reported by John sanders. Murder suspicions fall on various people and detectives also find out that Sylvia was physically assaulted. Although John is guilty of pornography addiction and also has evidence that shows he has been paying Sylvia for sex, he is not guilty of the murder. Detective/inspector Morse is assigned to investigate the case and finds out the lift was offered from a red car. The car is traced back to a university don named Bernard Crowther. Even though Bernard agrees to offer the lift and having extramarital affairs with another mistress, he pleads not guilty for the murder. His wife kills herself thinking her husband is the murderer. Bernard also dies of a heart attack. Later, inspector Morse finds out Bernard had sex with Sylvia, which angered his mistress Sue Widdowson. Sue committed the murder by knocking Sylvia with a lever. The other drama involves another character, Jennifer Coleby, who was Sylvia’s work mate in an insurance office. Apparently, she lives in the same apartment with Sue. The novel is filled with various mysteries and dramas as Morse tries to solve criminal activities in Oxford.

Inspector Morse is described as a criminal investigation department (CID) officer who owns a jaguar car and has a passion for music operas, beer, solving puzzles, arts and classic cars. Although he has a likable persona and believes in his guts, he also has grim temperament. He is helped by another faithful, more restrained sergeant called Lewis. In his second book of the series, Dexter introduces new mysteries surrounding strange murder and disappearances. Donald Phillipson is introduced as the man who goes to Oxford for an interview as the Headmaster of Roger Bacon School. He is involved in a conversation with a young girl, Valerie Taylor, at the bus stop. She seduces him and later turns out to be a student at the school Donald is employed. A year later, she disappears never to be seen again. Her case is however awakened after two years. Inspector Morse picks it up investigating a road accident that involved the killing of f them (Inspector Ainley). Valerie’s letter is found, although most people believe she is long dead. As investigations deepen, Morse finds out Valerie was last seen carrying her school bag and heading home by a lollipop vender. Later discoveries show that Valerie was pregnant at the time she disappeared. As the story continues Reginald, who is another teacher at the school, is murdered and three suspects are identified, with Valerie’s mother named one of them. Mrs. Phillipson is also implicated alongside David Acum who was Valerie’s French teacher.

When the series concludes in The Remorseful Day, Inspector Morse is determined to solve the murder of Yvonne Harrison which is still an unsolved case. His health is however deteriorating and he eventually dies of cardiac failure at the end of the story.

Other books in the series

As aforesaid, the Inspector Morse (series by Colin Dexter) has 13 different novels released within a period of 25 years. Some of the books in this series include The Silent World of Nicholas Quinn (1977), Service of All the Dead (1979), Dead of Jericho (1981), The Wrench Is Dead (1989) and The Daughters of Cain (1994). These novels contain many criminal cases ranging from robbery to assault, rape and murder. Colin uses various writing techniques in and plotting skills. The books describe how Inspector Morse personality and lifestyle helps him in solving crime. His puzzle solving abilities and impulsive persona allows him to quickly pick up pieces of clues and evidences to nail perpetrators. He is also a habitual beer drinker and barely eats non-fluid food. He can easily mingle with the public to spearhead investigations. The Inspector Morse book series has also been adapted into a TV series that ran between 1987 and 2000. The video series contains 33 episodes that run for two hours each, with John Thaw as Morse. The series was aired on ITV in UK and later aired for Central Independence Television. Towards the end, it was made by WGBH and Carlton. In 2012, the novel was also used to produce another series called Endeavour which featured actors like Shaun Evans (as Inspector Morse). Colin Dexter has also received various awards for his contribution towards crime fiction.


Inspector Morse is a finely plotted series that illustrate various crimes and criminal investigation procedures. It also contains many dramas, relationships and characters. The characters grow and develop across the 13 novels to become fully fledged and defined. By the time you read The Remorseful Day, you will have experience all sorts of drama, suspense and exhilarating adventures. It is simply a perfect work both in plot setting and overall setting.

Book Series In Order » Characters » Inspector Morse

4 Responses to “Inspector Morse”

  1. Catherine Lovato: 2 years ago

    Very helpful website – thank you.

    • Graeme: 2 years ago

      You’re welcome 🙂

  2. Sandra Rangel: 4 years ago

    The short stories are an afterthought. Most are slapdash and/or contrived. It appears that none were used for the TV series, not even as subplots (some of the stories are bare outlines of subplots).

  3. Gineyus: 5 years ago

    Outstanding series of novels


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